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Bp.Newton's scheme is much less objectionable. That valuable commentator clearly saw, that the
the edict of Nantz I detest as much as Mr. Bicheno himself can do: but mere abhorrence is no argument. Not to mention other objections, there is one prominent defect in this scheme, which seems to me to render the whole of it untenable. The second beast or the false prophet, for Mr. Bicheno very justly maintains their identity, is to be overthrown at the battle of Armageddon under the last vial; and the Ottoman empire, for so Mr. Bicheno with equal propriety understands the mystic Euphrates, is to be subverted under the sixth vial. But the Ottoman empire is not yet subverted; therefore the sixth vial is not yet poured out: and, if the sixth vial be not yet poured out, of course the seventh is not: and, if the seventh be not, the fulse prophet is not yet overthrown: and, if he be not yet overthrown, he is now in existence. The tyranny of the Capets however is already overthrown: therefore that tyranny cannot be the second beast. Signs of the Times, Part i. p. 17-25.
In his reply to me, Mr. Bicheno gives up the idea that the second. beast symbolizes the tyranny of the Capets; and now asserts, that he represents the tyrannical power or monarchy of France, abstracted from every consideration of the dynasty which directed the power of that kingdom, in short, the tyranny of France from Pepin even to Napoleon. This alteration, it is true, removes my objection; but it renders Mr. Bicheno's scheme altogether contradictory. It makes the beast at once the patron and the persecutor of the witnesses: their patron, when (according to another part of the scheme) the slain witnesses revived under the protection of revolutionary France; their persecutor, when (likewise according to the scheme) they were slain by the instrumentality of the Capetian tyranny, But see this matter discussed at large in my answer to Mr. Bicheno.
Mr. Lowman thinks, that the second beast symbolizes the German ecclesiastical electors, prince-bishops, baronial-abbots, and other ecclesiastico-temporal states that resemble in their con
two apocalyptic beasts instead of being at utter enmity with each other, were united in the closest bonds of friendship. Having therefore adopted the opinion that the first beast was the Papacy, he concluded that the second was the Roman Church; thus injudiciously separating what ought never to have been divided, and thus rending (as it were) the head from the body*. The fact is, what might appear a contradiction till it was actually fulfilled, the two beasts are two universal empires, not only existing together each under its proper and distinct head, but mutually supporting and strengthening each other. Daniel however declares, that the tenhorned beast is the last universal empire; and yet St. John represents this very beast as co-existing with another beast, or another universal empire : for, that the two beasts are two. powers perfectly
stitution the bishopric of Rome united with St. Peter's patrimony. Independent of every other objection that might be made to this scheme, it has received a practical confutation. The recently adopted system of secularization, for the purpose of indemnifying (as it is called) those German temporal princes who have been despoiled of their territories by the robberies of France, has effectually slain this supposed sceond beast previous to the war of Armageddon, under the seventh vial, to which period his overthrow is assigned by the prophet. Hence' it is manifest, that the second beast certainly cannot be what Mr. Lowman supposes him to be." Paraph. in loc.
* Mr. Mede more judiciously supposes the second beast to be the Roman pontiff with his clergy. "Bestia bicornis, sive "pseudoproleta, pontifex est Romanus cum suo clero.", Com. Apoc. in hoc.
distinct from each other, is manifest, not only from their different symbolical conformation, but from the express words of the prophet: "I beheld," says he," another beast," Hence it is plain, that the second apocalyptic beast cannot be a temporal universal empire both because it is physically impossible, that two temporal empires, each univer sal so far as the Church is concerned, should exist together; and because, if the second beast of the Apocalypse were a temporal empire, it would be a fifth temporal empire, whereas Daniel declares that there shall only be four. But, if the second beast be not a temporal empire, it must be a spiritual empire; for nothing but a spiritual empire can coexist with a temporal empire. Accordingly we find this to be the very case: for St. John, as if to prevent the possibility of error, explicitly informs us, that the second beast should be a false prophet*, or an ecclesiastical power; which, under the pretence of a divine commission, should grievously corrupt the genuine Gospel of Christ†.
Here then we have a plain prediction of some spiritual power, which should come in the name of God as a sound evangelical prophet or preacher; which should arrogate to itself universal or catholic
* Compare Rev. xiii. 12-17. with Rev. xix. 20.
+"The false prophet," says Bp. Newton very justly," is a body or succession of men propagating false doctrines, and "teaching lies for sacred truths." The second beast is manifestly styled a false prophet in direct opposition to the to mystic wit nesses, who are the true prophets of God.
authority in religious matters; which should coexist upon the most friendly terms with the tenhorned temporal empire, instigating it to persecute, during the space of 42 prophetic months or 1260 years, all such as should dare to dispute its usurped domination; and which, in short, should solve the symbolical problem of two contemporary beasts, by exhibiting to the world the singular spectacle, of a complete empire within an empire. Where we are to look for this power, since the great Roman beast was divided into ten horns and during the period of his existence under his last secular head, the Carlovingian line of feudal Emperors, let the im partial voice of history determine; and that voice without hesitation will declare, that the catholic church of Rome, the spiritual empire of which the Pope is the allowed head, can alone answer to the prophetic description of such a power*. At its first rise, the Papacy appears in the book of Daniel only as a little horn springing out of the first
*The Papists, by a wonderful fatality, have constant styled themselves Catholics, and their particular church the catholic Church; thus holding themselves forth as members of the body of the second beust, or catholic ecclesiastical empire. In this sense of the word, we readily concede to them the title of Catholics; in its genuine sense, as importing members of the spiritual body of Christ, we claim the title no less than themsolves. These pretended Catholics the Church of England uniformly denominates Papists; and, as I have no inclination to uncatholicise myself, I have throughout the present work adopted her phraseology in preference to the more fashionable one of the day.
or secular beast: but that little horn is represented as soon becoming exceeding powerful, and as influencing the actions of the whole beast. When the saints were given into its hand in the year 606, the papal kingdom became an universal spiritual empire; and, as such, it is represented by St. John under the symbol of a distinct beast having a proper head and horns of his own. That the little horn of the Roman beast typifies the same power as the second apocalyptic beast, is manifest indeed from this circumstance: Daniel, who fully delineates the character of the little horn, is entirely silent respecting the two-horned beast; and St. John, who as fully delineates the character of the two-horned beast, is entirely silent respecting the little horn. Accordingly we find, that the little horn and the two-horned beast, act precisely in the same capacity; each exercising all the power of the first beast before him, each being a false seer or prophet, and each perishing in one common destruction with the first or secular beast*.
1. The second beast sprung up out of the earth, and is described as being another beast perfectly distinct from the first-In the language of the Apocalypse, the earth denotes the Roman empire† :
* Compare Dan. vii. 8, 11, 21, 25, 26. with Rev. xiii. 5, 7, 12, 15, 16, 17. and xix. 20.
Mr. Mede and Bp. Newton suppose, that the beast rising out of the earth means, that the power typified by the beast should grow up like a plant silently and without noise, intimating further