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lows in the chapter decides, that the ultimate fulfilment of its contents was to be in the last days.
The celebrated Mr. Scott, in his notes upon verse 8th, where Gud promises the Church, that no oppres. sor shall pass through her any more; (a promise, which clearly relates to the Millennium,) says; “Eat the passage, no doubt, refers to events yet future; which will more signally accomplish it."
In this chapter, we find the following interesting prediction. Verse 6. "Änd a bastard shall devell in Ashdod; and I will cut off the pride of the Philistines.” Ashdod was a great and capital city of the Philistine's. Here was thcir temple of Dagon, to which the ark of God was carried, when it was taken by the Philistines in the days of ihe advanced age of Eli; 1 Sam. iv, and v. Here God plagued the Ashdodites, on account of the ark, till they were obliged to send it out of their country. Here Dagon fell before the ark, and broke off his head and hands. And here Samson, after a scene of captivity :o the lords of the Philistines, and being brought forth to make sport for them, on the day of a great festival to Dagon, overturned their temple, and siew thousands of the enemies of the Church. Those things were not without niystical inport, relative to the salvation of the gospel Church. Ashdod then, is a striking name given to some leading nation in the Papal communion, at the time when God is about to cut off the pride of the Papal Philistines, or of Mystery Babylon.
A bastard dwelling there, must denote some great and very unusual character, or dynasty, there set up; one out of the line of legal saccession. Nothing is known to have taken place, in the ancient literal Ash. dod, which even afforded a typical fulfilment of this part of the burden of the prophecy. Upon this bastard of Ashdod, expositors have been sparing. One, upon the passage, says, "Jonathan, one of the Maccabees, took it and destroyed many of the Philistines.” But what then? Jonathans did not dwell in Ashdod. And it is a singular compliment paid to him, io intimate, that he was the bastard of that place. Popl observes,
“Some say, Alexander was, by Olimpia’s confession , declared to be a bastard; and that he is here pointed at.” But there are objections to this exposition. The passage is no doubt mystical, and not literal;—even if it were a given point that Alexander was not the son of Philip of Macedon, but was of illegitimate issue;-a point, however, which I apprehend is not conceded. But Alexander did not dwell in Ashdod He inerely swept across this, as he did the other cities of Palestine, in his victorious flight into the east. Pool dissented front the opinion of its being Alexander; and rather thought it meant strangers dwelling there, with no right of inheritance. But he hint no instance of such an event. . And such an event, even if we could ascertain that some men had dwelt there, without much if any right of inheritance, could not be expected to be a subject of solemn prophecy, nor to be noted under such an appellation. The fulfilment of this prediction, I appre. hend, was still future when Pool wrote his annotations; and that it has recently begun to be fulfilled in the new French dynasty, in the infidel Empire; the god whom their fathers knew not, Dan. xi, 38, 39; the strange god, whom they should acknowledge, and increase with glory; and who should cause them to rule over many, and divide the earth for gain. Such a dynasty, of foreign extraction, is most strikingly represented by the prophetic appellation of bastard; though it should be continued in a succession of men, upon the imperial throne: And still more strikingly, (if possible,) should succeeding emperors be from different families; according to the rank of generals; or the length of their swords.
We may then, with some confidence pronounce, that we have seen the event of a bastard's dwelling in Ashdod, in the assumed imperial government, in a most noted capital of the land of the Papal Philistines; or in France. And the event has operated, according to the text, to cut off the pride of the Papal Philistines! This illegitimate dynasty, perched on the ruins of the Capits, has indeed humbled the pride of the modern Philistines, or of Papal Europe.
The prophet proceeds. “And I will take away his blood out of his mouth, and his abominations from be. tween his teeth. But he, that remaineth, even he shall be for our God; and he shall be as a governor in Judah; and Ekron as a Jebusite." The first of this verse may apply either to the bastard; or to Ashdod; and is strikingly applicable in either casa. Both may be represented as fed on human blood.
The Papal Ashdod has been “drunken with the blood of the saints.” And the bastard, in his turn, may be said to have fed on blood and carnage, in wantonly spilling the blood of millions. And all this blood is, by righteous Heaven, to be avenged. When the Lord comes out of his place, to punish the world for their iniquity, the earth shall disclose her blood, and no longer cover her slain. Then "he that remaineth shall be for our God.” God will then "turn to the remnant of the people, a pure language, that they may all call upon the name of the Lord, and serve him with one consent.” And they shall be as governors, yea, as kings and priests unto God. “And Ekron shall be as a Jeb. usite.” A remnant, even among the most hostile na. tions, shall be left, shall be converted, and shall unite in the true Church; even as a remnant of the Jebusites (a tribe of the Canaanites near Jerusalem) was spared, and incorporated with the Jews. The pious Araunah, who offered David his threshing floor for a place to build an altar, was one of these natives of the land.
“And I will encamp about mine house, because of the army, because of him that passeth by, and because of him, that returneth; and no oppressors shall pass through them any more: For now have I seen with mine eyes.” The Lord, as a Man of war, in the time of this battle of that great day of God Almighty, will camp about his Church, because of the perils of the times. He will destroy every oppressor; representing himself after the manner of men, as having personally come; and as having seen, and avenged the injuries of his people.
A new paragraph, in the chapter, begins. Christ in bis humiliation comes to the daughter of Zion, riding
upon an ass. This was literally sulälled, when Christ rode into Jerusalem. And it is to be mystically ful. filled, in his people, when they shall be left, in the midst of the earth, an aflicted and poor people, as the prophet expresses it, at the close of the battle of the great day; with whom the Millennium will begin; and the meek shall inherit the earth. Then, as the next verse informs, Christ will have cut off the chariot, the horse, and the battlebow; and he will speak peace to the heathen; and his dominion shall be from sea to sea; and from the river to the ends of the earth. The Jews, as it then follows, will have come forth, as prisoners of hope, from the pit, in which is no water of salvation. God will have bent Judah for him; and filled his bow with Ephraim; or the Jews and the ten tribes will be recovered, and united. At which time he will raise up the sons of Zion against the sons of Greece; and make the former as the sword of a mighty man. (Sec remarks on Zech. ix, 11-14, in the last part of the note, page 286.) The Lord will now be seen over the tribes of the people of his ancient covenant. He will be seen as their Protector against the vast coalition formed against them. His arrow shall go forth as the lightning; he shall blow the trumpet; and go as whiri. winds of the south. “And the Lord their God sball save them in that day, as the flock of his people; for they shall be as stones of a crown, lifted up, as an en. sign upon his land;” or as most rich gems in the crown of Christ, rendered most conspicuous to the nations. The blessedness of the Millennium follows, and closes the chapter. "For how great is bis goodness, and how great is his beauty? Corn shall make the young men cheerful; and new wine the maids.” Blessings, spiritual and temporal, shall fill the world.
Thus we have a modern Hadrach, and a Damascus, -on which the burden of the word of the Lord, or the heavy judgment of his word, rests. We have beheld a modern Ashdod, with its illegitimate dynasty; a mean of cutting off the pride of the Papal enemies of the Church. But the Dagon of Ashdod will be found prostrate in ruin, with his hands and head broken off,
before the ark of the Lord. Should the lords of the Philistines for a short season even captivate the ark of the God of Israel, they will find it too mighty for them; and it will soon rise out of their hands. And Sampson will eventually subvert the pillars of their boasted temple; and crush and bury them under its ruins.
Some other Prophecies in the Old Testament, rela
tive to the last expedition, and the overthrow of Antichrist; and the ruin of the enemies of the Church.
The Most High addresses Gog, Art thou he, of whom I have spoken in old times by my servants the prophets of Israel, who prophesied in those days many years, that I would bring thee against them? (Ezek. xxxviii, 17.) This terrible Power of the last days then, was much predicted by the ancient prophets in Israel. The same idea we find in Rev. x, 7. After the seven thun. ders had uttered their voices, and the Angel had sworn that the time should not be yet, or should not be prolonged, he adds; But in the days of the voice of the seventh angel, when he shall begin to sound, the mystery of God shall be finished, as he hath declared to his servants the prophets. This finishing of the mystery of iniquity, at the beginning of the seventh trum: pet, involves the destruction of Antichrist. And this is what God had revealed to the ancient prophets. The phrase relative to the preparing of the enemies of the Church for the seventh vial, Rev. xvi, 14, To gather them to the battle of that great day of God Almighty, implies that it is a day well known, as being much predicted in the prophets. We may then open the books of the prophets with an assurance that we may there find the overthrow of Antichrist.
I shall now note a few of the passages which relate to this event.
The prophet Joel describes a terrible scene, which he calls, The day of the Lord; a day of darkness and