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النشر الإلكتروني

In prosecuting this inquiry into the prophetic history of the jews of the latter times, I could not avoid perceiving the intimate connection it has with that of popery, particularly towards the end of THE INDIGNATION, and in the circumstances connected with the emancipation of Israel out of the bondage of the spiritual Egypt. This necessarily led to an extension of inquiry into the

prophetic history farther than was at first designed.

The representation I have given of popery, though of a dark and sombre hue, is such as history warrants, and all protestant commentators are agreed in. And though for much the same reasons given above, it will be equally unavailing to the persons most deeply concerned in it, yet it may be not so (at such a time as this) to the friends of true religion, in putting them upon their guard against those efforts of the expiring beast which are foretold, and may ere long be carried to a length at present very little suspected by many, although the indications of their approach are even now manifestly visible.

The memorable events of the last twenty years have opened quite a new prospect into the regions of prophecy, where before all was wrapped in silence, and impenetrable clouds and darkness. Newton, and the troop of commentators in his company, have passed through a wide and (at that time) barren tract of this country, in a full trot; as not having found any objects of sufficient distinctness in the thick mist (then circumfused around the judgment of the great whore,) to which the expository telescope could be lifted up with any tolerable clearness of vision. But since that time the haze has begun to break, and many of the nearer objects have been defined, and the rude masses of shade have been opened out into their various forms and respective colours : and even the distant points in the prospect are falling, one after another, within reach of the powers of the instrument.

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presume to hope that a representation in a great measure new, has been given here of the strong

features of popery, by the application of a great many of the ancient prophecies, some of them perhaps not less applicable to the mystical BABYLON, and Sodom, and Egypt,* of St John, than those he has himself applied, in his very concise view of the prophecies of the christian times, which for obvious reasons did not admit of many

• Rev. xi. &.

such references, nor require much light at the time when he wrote. But by his quoting a few, and alluding to other passages in the prophets, it appears to have been his design to point out to us the sources, from whence (in due time) a strong and luminous illustration of his dark hieroglyphics and mystical language might be derived.

As I conceive the subject to be at this time of peculiar interest to all protestants, when we see the arm of Providence making very extraordinary movements in the quarters of the catholice, in every country cohere they are to be furnd,t I wishi. ed this view of “the controversy of Sion,”. and the speedily approaching decision of it, to be ada pted to the use of persons not accommodated with better assistances, and of littie leisure for extended inquiry, who are commonly apt to take up their opinions of religion upon trust, without examination. For their use I have studied plainness and perspicuity rather than stile, and have thrown into the form of notes whatever refer. ences to the greek text, or latin authorities of popish authors, &c. appeared necessary for illustration or proofs ; and have always given the sense of such quotations along with them. For

+ Matt. xxiv, 28.

the same reason I have fixed the price of this publication so low as barely to pay its own ex: pences, even if it should meet with a favorable acceptance; and if it does not, I have no objection to the loss that may accrue, in what I consider as an humble attempt to assist the cause of truth, and so far at least commendable, though it should not be very successful.

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