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people, by those arts of deception which they would employ, and those fictitious miracles which they would perform. Now every man, conversant in ecclesiastical history, knows, that the period, when the facerdotal body first arrived at great opulence and power, was fertile in false miracles, and that in a variety of ways they deceived the people, in order to swell that opulence, and to ex-,
tend that power.
The prophet having informed us, that the two-horned Beaft would be successful in the delusions which he would practise, and in his endeavours to arrive at great influence; next proceeds to state what would be the use, which he would make of that influence when acquired. He says to them that dwell on the earth, that they should make an image to the Beast, which had the wound by a fiord and did livé. That the suggestions of the antichristian priesthood would be listened to, and their wishes carried into execution, the prophet foretells in the following verfe. And he had power to give life unto the image of the Beast, that the image of the Beast fhould both speak, and cause that as many as would not worship the image of the Beast should be killed. What this image of the Beast is, an extract from Mr. Evanson will shew. • The apoftate ecclefiaftics, by their in' trigues and influence, procured an image of the Civil
Power to be set up, and were able to give it such an 'active energy, that it could utter decrees and ordi
nances, and caused those, who refused to worship, that * is, to pay implicit obedience to it in all religious con
cerns, to be put to death.–Such an image of temporal * power, contrary to every principle, not of Christianity • only, but even of found policy, did the Latin emperors erect, and all the succeeding princes of Europe uphold, when they established the Hierarchy and its courts of
spiritual jurisdiction. The authority of ecclefiaftics, with respect both to this world and the next, is altogether groundless and imaginary. Yet the Hierarchy once formed, with much artifice and by degrees, ac
quired to itself the power of infli&ting the severest 'penalties on those it deemed delinquents, and even of 'condemning them to the most barbarous deaths.' The image of the Beast, says a learned apocalyptical writer of the last century, is “an Ecclesiastical Power,
equal to the Secular Power for the universality of its * jurisdiction. Indeed what kind of power within the same bounds and territories can it possibly be, but eccle• siastical, that can be a living image of the Secular, exercising supreme authority at the same time with it, and
in the same places, as this is described ?' Thus prior to the dissolution of the Roman empire, the patriarchs,
archbishops, and bishops, had their ranks and places • every where according to the divisions of the provinces
of the state; and the name of the ecclefiaftical dioceses did arise from the distinction of the several civil dio
ceses of the empire by Constantine. And it is estab* lished by the canons of two fynods, that if any city * were newly raised by the emperor, the ecclesiastical
dignities there should be conformed to it. So that the • church and state did run parallel to one another
through the whole body of the Roman empire, just • like the arteries and veins in the body of man, and * observed the same proportion every where to one
another18.' When Christianity,' says Sir Michael Foster, . became the established religion of the empire, * and church and state became one body, considered
Let. to bp. Hurd, p. 57 *8 Creslener's Dem, of the Pr. Appl. of the Apoc. p. 246.
* only in different views and under different relations ; the eccleßaftical and civil laws of the empire flowed • from one and the same source, Imperial rescripts "9.'
And he caused all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and bond, to receive a mark in their right hands, or in their foreheads. We must understand,' says bp. Newton, that it was customary among the 'ancients, for fervants to receive the mark of their mafter, and soldiers of their general, and those who were devoted to any particular deity, of the particular deity to. whom they were devoted.' Hence, says Dr. Lancaster, such marks became marks of servitude. Now the • hand,' says he is the symbol of action and hard la-, 'bour: the forehead signifies the public profession. The
whole shews, that it is required that all men give assist*ance to pursue the designs of the Beast and its false
Prophet, or at least to make a public profession of fer• vitude.' And that no man might buy or fill, fave he that had the mark, or the name of the Beast, or the number of his name. • That which does the best open the
mystery of these expressions,' says Dr. Creslener, is • that observation of Grotius upon this place, that it was a common fashion in St. John's time for every Heathen God to have a particular society, or fraternity belonging to him; and the way of admitting any into ' these fraternities was, 1. By giving them some hieroglyphic mark in their hands or forehead, which was accounted sacred to that particular God; as that of an * ivy-leaf to own themselves of the fraternity of Bac
chus. 2. By fealing them with the letters of the name of 'that God. And 3. with that number, which the Greek • letters of their name did make up; for the numeral cy
'pliers of the Greeks were the letters of the alphabet 20.
Those who have the Mark of the Beast,' I am again quoting from Dr. Lancaster, ‘may be such whose con*Jtant purpose it is to defend the worship of the Beast, * being active and vigorous therein. Those who have • the Name of the Beast are such who are known to be ' slaves or followers by his name being called upon them; the imposing of a name betokening the subjec'tion of the party named to the imposer. And therefore • slaves were new named by their masters, and marked, * anciently, with their masters names, that it might be ' publicly known whose slaves they were. Those who
have the Number of the Name of the Beast may be such as are his worshippers in a private manner, and discover • themselves to be so by some private mark.–To pro• hibit persons from buying and selling is to banish them from public fociety, and to exclude them from the
benefit or protection of the laws. And this has been * done by the false Prophet against those who would not * embrace his religion, or submit to his authority.'
* If,' says Mr. Evanson, 'We understand the prophet's buying and selling in the literal sense, the excommuni'cation of heretics, that is, of those who profess not the
theological tenets by law established, affords us the 'most convincing proof of the full completion of this
part of the prophetic vision. But it is to be observed, * that the language of this prophecy is almost every ' where figurative. And, since the apostate church is ' called the city Babylon, and, in the eighteenth chapter, • is represented as carrying on a most extensive and
to Dem. of the Pr. Appl. of the Apoc. p. 274. Thus the name of • Thouth or the Egyptian Mercury was signified by the number 1218; the name of Jupiter, as Hapxin or the beginning of things, by the number 717; and the name of the Sun, as nus goud, or 'engs the author of rain, by ! the uumber 608.' Bp. Nawton,
gainful traffic, and her teachers are described as mer: chants: the causing that no man might buy or sell who
wore not the badge of servitude to the religion of the • civil magistrate, may, with great reason, be interpreted 'to signify the prohibiting all persons from giving or
receiving any religious instructions, but what were * conformable to that standard of belief, which the ruling powers, for the time being, decreed to be truly orthodox 21 .'
That the influence of the two-horned Beast, the re. presentative of the antichristian priesthood, has for centuries been diminishing, that his power is now greatly decayed, and that the existing circumstances of the world threaten the downfal of every remnant of spiritual usurpation, are circumstances which may be reflected on with no small degree of pleasure, by the friend of liberty, by the advocate of free inquiry, and the genuine lover of the gospel.
After the two-horned and the ten-horned Beasts have been so diffusely illustrated, the symbol of the Dragon ought not to be passed over altogether in filence; and the rather, because the passage cited from bp. Hurd, wherein he asserts it to be the symbol of the Old Roman Government in its Pagan state, stands in need of explication.
With respect to the Dragon, that is mentioned in se. veral parts of ch. xii. and xiii. what the prelate asserts is perfectly true; for there its meaning is manifestly restricted; being described with the emblems of the Ro. man Empire, as having seven heads and ten horns, and seven crowns upon his heads 22. But it follows not
& Let. to bp. Hurd, P. 59.
** XII. 3. Wolfius upon this verse (in his Curæ Philologicæ) thinks it 'worthy of remark, that, in the time of St. John, the Dragon began to be represented on the military standards of the Roman emperors.