Julian Period, 4799. Vulgar Era,


11 Having the glory of God: and her light was like Asia Minor. unto a stone most precious, even like a jasper stone, clear as crystal;

12 And had a wall great and high, and had twelve gates, and at the gates twelve angels, and names written thereon, which are the names of the twelve tribes of the children of Israel:

13 On the east three gates; on the north three gates; on the south three gates; and on the west three gates.

14 And the wall of the city had twelve foundations, and in them the namas of the twelve apostles of the Lamb. 15 And he that talked with me had a golden reed to measure the city, and the gates thereof, and the walls thereof.

16 And the city lieth four-square, and the length is as large as the breadth and he measured the city with the reed, twelve thousand furlongs. The length, and the breadth, and the height of it are equal.

17 And he measured the wall thereof, an hundred and forty and four cubits, according to the measure of a man, that is of the angel.

18 And the building of the wall of it was of jasper; and the city was pure gold, like unto clear glass.

19 And the foundations of the wall of the city were garnished with all manner of precious stones. The first foundation was jasper; the second, sapphire; the third, a chalcedony; the fourth, an emerald:

20 The fifth, sardonyx; the sixth, sardius; the seventh, chrysolite; the eighth, beryl; the ninth, a topaz ; the tenth, a chrysoprasus; the eleventh, a jacinth; the twelfth, an amethyst.

21 And the twelve gates were twelve pearls; every several gate was of one pearl; and the street of the city was pure gold, as it were transparent glass.

22 And I saw no temple therein: for the Lord God Almighty, and the Lamb, are the temple of it.

23 And the city had no need of the sun, neither of the moon, to shine in it: for the glory of God did lighten it, and the Lamb is the light thereof.

24 And the nations of them which are saved shall walk in the light of it: and the kings of the earth do bring their glory and honour into it.

25 And the gates of it shall not be shut at all by day: for there shall be no night there.

26 And they shall bring the glory and honour of the nations into it.

27 And there shall in no wise enter into it any thing that defileth, neither whatsoever worketh abomination, or maketh a lie: but they which are written in the Lamb's book of life.

Julian Period, 4799. Vulgar Era, 96.

1 And he shewed me a pure river of water of life, clear Asia Miae. as crystal, proceeding out of the throne of God and of the Lamb.

2 In the midst of the street of it, and on either side of the river, was there the tree of life, which bare twelve manner of fruits, and yielded her fruit every month: and the leaves of the tree were for the healing of the nations.

3 And there shall be no more curse: but the throne of God and of the Lamb shall be in it; and his servants shall serve him:

4 And they shall see his face; and his name shall be in their foreheads.

5 And there shall be no night there; and they need no candle, neither light of the sun; for the Lord God giveth them light and they shall reign for ever and ever.

6 And he said unto me, These sayings are faithful and true; and the Lord God of the holy prophets sent his angel to shew unto his servant the things which must shortly be done.

7 Behold I come quickly: blessed is he that keepeth the sayings of the prophecy of this book.

8 And I John saw these things, and heard them. And when I had heard and seen, I fell down to worship before the feet of the angel which shewed me these things.

9 Then saith he unto me, See thou do it not: for I am thy fellow-servant, and of thy brethren the prophets, and of them which keep the sayings of this book: worship God.

§ 53. REV. Xxii. 10-15.

Christ declares that the Prophecies of the Revelation are
not to be sealed up, as they are intended for the Know-
ledge and Improvement of the whole human Race.

10 And he saith unto me, Seal not the sayings of the
prophecy of this book: for the time is at hand.

1 He that is unjust, let him be unjust still and he which is filthy, let him be filthy still: and he that is righteous, let him be righteous still: and he that is holy, let him be holy still.

12 And, behold, I come quickly; and my reward is with me, to give every man according as his work shall be. 13 I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end, the first and the last.

14 Blessed are they that do his commandments, that they may have right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the city.

15 For without are dogs, and sorcerers, and whoremongers, and murderers, and idolaters, and whosoever loveth and maketh a lie.

Julian Period, 4799.

§ 54. REV. xxii. 16-19. and part of 20. Vulgar Era, Christ now makes his last Appeal by the Spirit of Prophecy


to the World-by again declaring both his Divinity and
Humanity inviting all Mankind into the Christian
Church-commanding them to make the Scriptures their
Guide, and announcing his future Advent.

16 I Jesus have sent mine angel to testify unto you
these things in the churches. I am the root and the off-
spring of David, and the bright and morning star.

17 And the Spirit and the bride say, Come. And let him that heareth say, Come. And let him that is athirst, come and whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely.

18 For I testify unto every man that heareth the words of the prophecy of this book, If any man shall add unto these things, God shall add unto him the plagues that are written in this book:

19 And if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life, and out of the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book.

20 He which testifieth these things saith, Surely I come quickly; Amen.

$ 55.

REV. xxii. part of ver. 20, and 21.
St. John concludes the Apocalypse with an ardent Aspira-
tion for the coming of Christ-and a Prayer for a Bless-
ing on the Churches.

-Even so, come, Lord Jesus.

21 The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you all. Amen.

Asia Minor.


St. John writes this Epistle", to confute the Errors of the
false Teachers, and their different Sects-against the

37 The place which has here been assigned in this arrange-
ment to the Epistles of St. John, will excite much surprise
among those who have been accustomed, with the generality of
commentators, to fix an earlier date, and arrange them before
the Apocalypse. In the absence of all positive and decisive
evidence of the precise year in which they were written, we are
unable to depend, with satisfaction, upon the conjectural ar-
guments by which both an early or a late date may be defended.
Many reasons, however, have suggested themselves, which ap-
pear to be sufficient to justify the conclusion which I have here
adopted, that the Epistles of St. John were written immedi-
ately before the compilation of his Gospel, and after the Reve-
lations, at the close of the life of the apostle, and consequently
at the termination of the apostolic age.

When the Holy Spirit inspired the various writers of the
Old and New Testament, it imparted only the instructions and


Y y

Julian Period, 4799. Vulgar Era,


Doceta, who denied the Humanity of Christ, (chap. iv. Asia Mint
3.)-asserting that his Body and Sufferings were not

prophecies which were necessary for the benefit of the uni-
versal Church. It did not so interfere with the natural or ac-
quired talents of the favoured persons, whom it elevated above
the rest of mankind, that their peculiar or characteristic modes
of expression should be necessarily altered. Isaiah was a
nobleman and a courtier, and his refined and polished lan-
guage declares his education, as well as his native genius.
Amos was a herdsman; and though there is the same super-
human internal evidence that the Spirit of Prophecy rested on
him also, though none of the prophets has more magnificently
described the Deity, though his sentiments are elevated, and
his diction splendid, he is still distinguished by the use of
images which are drawn from rural life; and by phrases which
are not characteristic either of the study of the schools of the
prophets, or of the courtesy of a king's palace. Every one
of the sacred writers is distinguished from his inspired brethren
by some internal proofs of his vocation, or habits, or educa-
tion: and if the external evidence of the truth and authenticity
of the various books of Scripture were not taken into consi
deration, sufficient arguments might be adduced in their de-
fence, from a careful comparison of the contents of the sacred

This consideration will possibly assist us in the attempt to
discover, from internal evidence, whether it is not probable
that the Apocalypse was written before the Epistles of St. John.
The former book abounds with Hebraisms, and with images
derived from the Jewish traditions and peculiarities. Though
neither the Septuagint nor the New Testament are written in
purely attic Greek, not one book of either volume is so full of
the solecisms in question as the Apocalypse; whereas the Epistles
and Gospel of St. John are written both correctly and ele-
gantly. It is true that the three books are proved to be the
work of the same author, by their general agreement, both in
style and expression; and Wetstein, Horne, and Dr. Lardner,
have collected numerous instances of this coincidence: but the
chief barbarisms of the Apocalypse are to be found neither in
the Epistles, nor the Gospel of St. John. In this respect they
are remarkably distinguished from each other: and while the
common adoption of certain forms of speech, demonstrates
the whole of the books in question to be the work of one writer,
the insertion of so many peculiar idioms and Hebraisms in the
one, appear to justify our conclusion, that it must have been
written at a period when the author was not so well versed in
the elegances and purity of the language in which he wrote.
He seems as if he thought in one language, and wrote in an.
other; or, as if he had attempted for the first time to write in
a language in which he made a subsequent improvement. This,
in literature, is not an unfrequent case. The triple sentence,
for instance, and the balanced periods, which so remarkably
characterise the style of the Rambler, and the Lives of the
Poets, were perceptible in the early works of Dr. Johnson; and
afford internal evidence that they were written by him; while
the grossness and puerility of his Marmor Norfolciense, are
such as he would have blushed to have acknowledged in his ma-
turer years. In the early Poems of Milton we may trace, and
that not faintly, "the towering thought," and hear "the liv
ing lyre," of the days of his ripened genius; yet he could not
have written, at that splendid period, the pretty conceits which

[blocks in formation]

real, but imaginary-against the Cerinthians and Ebio- Asia Minor. nites, who contended that he was a mere Man, and that

adorn or disgrace his juvenile Poems on the Passion and the

But it is not only the internal evidence which induces me to
place the Apocalypse before the Epistles of St. John. The cir-
cumstances of the apostle's life sufficiently account for the more
frequent adoption of Hebraisms in the former book. He was a
native Jew, and probably continued within the precincts of the
Holy Land longer than any of the apostles. Neither he, nor
any of the twelve, appear to have left Palestine during the
Pauline persecutions. When James was made Bishop of Jeru-
salem, in the Herodian persecution, after the Apostle James
was beheaded, and Peter had been cast into prison, it is pro-
bable, as I have endeavoured to shew in the notes to the 10th
chapter of this arrangement, that all the apostles left Jerusalem,
and John among the number. He was present however at the
council in that city, and there could not have been time, during
that short interval, for the establishment of the Churches in
Asia, which are said to have acknowledged him as their foun-
der. It seems probable that he continued either in Jerusalem,
or within the precincts of Palestine, till the destruction of the
city. Throughout that part of the Acts of the Apostles which
relates the travels of St. Paul, St. John is not once mentioned;
and no salutation is sent to him in any of the epistles which St.
Paul wrote from Rome to the Churches of Asia; not even in
his Epistle to the Ephesians, nor in the epistles which, in the
latter part of his life, he wrote to Timothy in Ephesus, while
Paul was alive. I agree therefore with the opinion of Mack-
night, and others, that John probably remained in Judea till he
saw Jerusalem encompassed with armies, and observed the
other signs of its approaching ruin, foretold by his divine
Master. Lampe (Prolegomena to St. John's Gospel, lib. i.
cap. 3.) is of the same opinion, and fixes the time of his de-
parture in the last year of Nero, in which he is confirmed by
the Chronicon Paschale. During the whole of this period he
would have conversed in his native language, among his own
people: neither can we assign any reason for his adopting the
Greek language, or for cultivating it with peculiar attention at
this period. Baronius and Dr. Lardner would place the retire-
ment of the apostle from Judea after the martyrdom of St. Paul
and St. Peter; this would make a difference of a few years only.
A more important question is, whether St. John lived exclu-
sively among the Greek cities of Asia, in the interval between
the overthrow of Jerusalem, and his banishment to Patmos in
the last year of Domitian. This cannot be satisfactorily de-
cided. The learned Mill places some dependance upon the
tradition, that this apostle travelled into Parthia and India.
His first epistle was called by Augustine, the Epistle to the
Parthians; and the Jesuits letters, cited by Baronius, affirm
that the people of a town in India believed the Gospel to bave
been preached there by St. John; and the same is asserted, as
I find in a note in Lampe, by the people of a town in Arabia.
It is not probable that he would immediately establish himself
at Ephesus; as Timothy, who is generally declared by the
ecclesiastical historians to have been bishop of that place, was
probably still alive. Others, whose opinion is strongly con-
demned by Lampe, have been of opinion that St. John did not
take up his residence at Ephesus till ngar the end of the reign
of Domitian. This opinion seems to be most supported by the

« ElőzőTovább »