Page images

and deftruction of this antichriftian power; p. 391, &c. The fecond woe of the Othman empire must -end, before the third woe can be poured out upon the kingdom of the beaft; ibid. The divine judgments upon the kingdom of the beaft difplayed under variety of figures and reprefentations; p. 391, 392. Antichrift and his feat both to be deftroyed by fire; p. 393. About the time. of the fall of the Othman empire and of the Chriftian Antichrift, the converfion and restoration of the Jews; p. 394, 395. The proper order of these events; p. 395, 396. After the deftruction of Antichrift the glorious millennium commences, or the kingdom of Chrift upon earth for a thousand years; p. 396, 397. Beft to forbear all curious inquiries into this fubject; p. 397, 398. After the thousand years and the general judgment, the world to be deftroyed, and the new heaven and the new earth to fucceed; p. 398. Conclufion; the corruptions of popery being fo particularly foretold, we have the lefs reafon to be furprised and offended at them; ibid. The gofpel will finally prevail over all enemies and oppofers; p. 399.


p. 399-416.

From thefe inftances of the truth of prophecy may be inferred the truth of revelation; p. 399, 400. A fummary view of the prophecies now fulfilling in the world; p. 400-402. A large quotation from Dr. Clarke tending to confirm and illuftrate the fame subject; p. 402-412. No room for any poffible forgery of the prophecies; p. 412. The harmony, variety, and beauty of the prophetic writings; ibid. Tho' fome parts are obfcure for good reafons, yet others are fufficiently clear, and the perfect completion will produce a perfect understanding of all the prophecies; p. 412, 413. Human learning requifite to explain the prophecies, and particularly a compe


tent knowledge of hiftory; p. 413. The patrons of infidelity are only pretenders to learning and knowledge; p. 414. Modern infidelity worfe even than that of the Jews; ibid. So many inftances of prophecies and their completions, the strongest atteftations of a divine revelation; p. 414, 415. Miracles

and other proofs of the truth of the Chriftian religion; p. 415, 416. Prophecies accomplished the greatest of all miracles; p. 416. Conclufion; p. 416, 417.








E Jewish church, confifting only of a fingle nation, and living under a theocracy or the immegovernment of God, experienced continual interns of a particular extraordinary providence in its nd protection, and was from time to time inftructprophets raised up and fent one after another as ns required. But the Chriftian church being deto comprehend the whole world, was like the at firft erected by miracle, but like the world too e governed by a general ordinary providence, by hed laws, and the mediation of fecoud caufes. ifference in the nature and conftitution of the urches, is the reason why prophecies, and miand other fupernatural powers, which were confo long, and repeated fo frequently in the Jewish were in the Chriftian church confined to the

rufalem unto Antioch. One of them, named Agabus (ver. 28.) foretold the great dearth, which came to pass in the days of Claudius Cæfar. The fame prophet foretold likewife (Acts XXI. 10, 11.) the bonds and imprisonment of St. Paul. Philip the evangelift had alfo (ver. 9.) four daughters, virgins, which did prophefy. Prophetic as well as other fpiritual gifts abounded in the primitive church; their fons and their daughters did prophefy, (Acts II. 17.) their young men fare vifions, and their old men dreamed dreams. But the only prophecies, which the Spirit of God hath thought fit to record and preferve, are fome delivered by our bleffed Saviour himself, and by his apoftles, particularly St. Paul and St. John.

Our bleffed Saviour, as he was the great fubject of prophecy, fo was an illuftrious prophet himfelf; as he excelled in all other fpiritual gifts and graces, fo was eminent in this alfo; and gave ample proofs of his divine commiffion by his prophecies as well as by his miracles. What he faid upon one occafion, is equally applicable to all his predictions, that their accomplishment is a fufficient atteftation of his being the Meffiah; (John XIII. 19.) Now I tell you before it come, that when it is come to pass, ye may believe that I am he He foretold not only his own paffion, death, and refurrection, but alfo the manner and circumftances of them, that he fhould be betrayed by one of the twelve, even by Judas Ifcariot the fon of Simon; that all the reft fhould be offended becaufe of him that very night, and notwithftanding their proteftations to the contrary fhould forfake him and fly: that Peter particularly, who was more zealous and eager than the reft, before the cock crew twice, fhould deny him thrice; that he fhould be betrayed to the chief priefts, and be delivered to the Gentiles to mock, and to fcourge, to fpit upon, and to kill him; that he should be crucified, and the third day thould rife again, and appear to his difciples in Galilee. He foretold that his apoftles fhould be enabled of plain fishers to become fishers of men; that they fhould be indued with power from on high to fpeak with new tongues and to work miracles; that they fhould go forth into all nations, and publish the glad tidings of the gofpel unto



Etermoft parts of the earth. He foretold the perons and fufferings which his difciples fhould un, and particularly by what manner of death Peter old age fhould glorify God, and that John should e till after the deftruction of Jerufalem. He old the rejection of the Jews and the calling of the les; that the kingdom of heaven fhould be taken from the former, and be given to the latter, who I bring forth the fruits thereof; that the number of fciples from finall beginnings thould increase wonly, as a little feed groweth into a tree, and a little leaveneth the whole lump; that his church fhall founded upon a rock, that it should stand for ever, ll the powers of hell fhould not prevail against it. things were moft of them contrary to all human rances, and impoffible to be forefeen by human nce or effected by human power; and he must be ughly acquainted with the hearts of men, and with rection and difpofition of future events, who could I them with fuch certainty and exactnefs: and fome em are actually accomplishing in the world at this

t time.

: none of our Saviour's prophecies are more reable than those relating to the destruction of Jeruas none are more proper and pertinent to the of thefe difcourfes: and we will confider them as · ie in the twenty fourth chapter of St. Matthew, g in alfo what is fuperadded by the other evangelifts parallel occafions. Thefe prophecies were deliby our Saviour about forty years, and were comI to writing by St. Matthew about thirty years, they were to take effect. St. Matthew's is univerllowed to be the (1) firft of the four Gofpels; the time, as it is always placed the first in order. It ritten, as (2) moft writers affirm, in the eighth fter the afcenfion of our Saviour. It must have been

« PreviousContinue »