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Different comings of Christ
SOME OF THE MOST IMPORTANT NOTES, IN THE FOLLOW-
The testimonies kindly given, by those Divines, to
whose inspection and advice the manuscript of the first edition of this work was submitted, will not be here inserted;" (as they were inserted in the first edition;) except the two following, as a specimen of them.
Rev. Dr. Hermenway's. “Having heard a considerable part of the Dissertation above mentioned read, I can heartily concur with the others, who have recommended the publication of it, as ingenious, seasonable, and highly worthy of the public attention.
Moses HEMMENWAY." Wells, Nov. 28, 1809.
Rev. Dr. Thayer's. “Having attended to a Dissertation in manuscript, of Rev. E. Smith, on the Prophecies, relative to Antichrist and the last days; including a Treatise on the seven Vials; I am fully of opinion, that new light is thrown upon the subject; that the predictions, and the events stated as their fulfilment, better accord with each other, than in any publication that I have seen upon the interesting subject. The work appears to be handsomely and judiciously executed; and calculated to afford important and necessary instruction and warning to the present generation. For these reasons it is wished that it may be made public.
ELIAU THAYER." Kingston, July 2, 1810.
TO THE SECOND EDITION.
SINCE the publishing of the first edition of this work, the signs of the limes continue to be very interesting. And the evidence, that a new era of affairs has indeed commenced, is decisive. Nothing has occurred to evince that any material point in this publication, is incorrect. As far as the author has understood, the sentiments of it have niet with general approbation. He is hence encouraged, as the first edition has for some time been disposed of, and a second has been requested, to submit this to the public.
The work has been diligently revised, and enlarged. A new chapter has been inserted, on the Revelation of St. John: And one on the millennial Kingdom of Christ: A new section also, on Ezekiel's chambers of Imagery: And a section on the illegitimale dynasty in modern France. Some other sections are revised, and enlarged. To some of the vials, especially the fifth, considerable additional attention has been paid. In the chapter on the Revelation, two charts are given, to facilitate the explanation of this mystical book. An introductory chapter was prepared, to ascertain the origin and use of the figurative language found in the Bible, and to explain many of the symbols usual in prophetic imagery. But this has since been given to the pubjic in a small separate publication, as A Key to the figurative language found in the sacred Scriptures. Hence it is here omitied.
The late signal reverses in the affairs of the French Empire, it is believed, furnish no serious objection against the views given of that Empire, as the last head of the secular Roman Beast. They indeed furnish the fulfilment of a feature, found in the prophecies, relative to this last part of the Roman Power, which, till lately, has been wanting;-chat "the feet and tocs” of the great image should be "part of iron, and part of clay;" that "the kingdom should be parily strong, and partly broken.” That the earth should help the women, (the Church) and occa. sionally open her mouth, and swallow up the foods, cast from the mouth of the dragon, with a view 10 sweep her from the world. That "he wrath of man shall praise God,” when he comes down in the last days, to save all the meek of the earih; "and the remainder of that wrath,” or what would exceed the divine purposes, "he will restrain.” That after the infidel Power, Dan, xi, 36–45, shall have done according to his will, and have magnified himself above every god, or legitimate ruler, and
spoken marvellous things against the God of gods, and Jesus Christ; after the same nation shall have received a god, or ruler, whom their fathers knew not;—an emperor of foreign descent; and shall have been led by him to overrun the most strong holds of neighboring nations; and this foreign god shall have divided out the Roman earth for gain, to his vassal kings of an hour,“ at the time of the end, (when these things are thus far accomplished,) a kingdom of the south shall push, (bute) at him; and a kingdom of the north shall come against him like a whirla wind, which prostrates all in its way. A whirlwind, or tornado, for so many centuries predicted, composed of a vast coalition of powers, might be expected to sweep its way, and prostrate opposition.
An incipient fulfilment of these prophetic strokes, has of lato caused a smile upon the face of the world; and revived hopes, which had become almost extinct. To how great a degrec these reverses may proceed, God only knows. Should the brokenness of this last part of the Roman Power be now made in a considerable degree as conspicuous, as has been hîs antecedent strength; (as the text seems to warrant us to expect; "the kingdom shall be partly strong and partly broken,") that wicked Power would indeed, for the present, be prostrated! But should this be the case, should all the horns of the Antichristian Beast be torn off, and the wretch lie bleeding and fainting; yet it appears evident that all his work is not yet done. This great Roman Beast does not go into his final perdition, till the battle of that great day of God, which is subsequent to the restoration of the Jews to Palestine.
The enormous Power, or Influence, symbolized by the Beast from the bottomless pit, probably depends on no one man;though it has been accomniodated hitherto with a leader truly prepared for the work of judgment. In the first reign of the im. perial head of the Roman Beast, emperors were set up, and deposed, and numbers slain, in thick succession. And it repeatedly seemed as though destruction had fallen upon the Empire. Still that imperial head continued. That genius of the people coninued, which would be governed by nothing short of a military despotism. And this, we may expect, will be the case, henceforth, on the Roman earth, till the Millennium. Should revolu. tion succeed revolution, it would not alter the case.
The principles of atheism, licentiousness, and disorganization, taught and supported in a profound system, and which constitute the very essence of the Beast from the bottomless pit, are so extensively and deeply disseminated, that the infernal current of them will not be effectually controled nor regulated, even though prime leaders be destroyed, and the earth open her mouth and swallow up their foods of efficient rage! The fountain of the extensive mischief remaining, it will, in some shape, fill all up again. The nature of the Beast from the bottomless pit is not changed. It rests on the broad basis of a