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Taking this to be the blessed temple, which is to be opened to let out the seven angels of the wrath of God, let us next inquire when it was built, how it came to be shut up on earth, and when it is to be finally opened for the reception of all the children of God, never more to be shut? It was built by Christ himself, in the first century, when, at that time, he eliablished the word of God in his church. It remained open, and continually received, all who, by at holy life and conversation, became worthy to enter into it, until it was spread, in a manner, over the whole earth. And it was shut upon earth, or “ caught up unto God and to his throne*,' as the prophet elsewhere expresses it, in the seventh century, when the church, ungratefully and foolishly, deserting the word of the true God, fell into Mohamedan fatalism, filth, and sensuality, and Papal corruption and idolatry; and thereby discarded its holy High Priest. And it will continue thus fhut up, until the seven angels shall be ready to come out of it, when it shall be opened.
But although opened, it is to be fo “ filled with "smoke, from the glory and from the power of God, so that no man shall be able to enter into it, till the “ seven piagues of the seven angels shall be fülos filled :” meaning, as I humbly apprehend, from considering the different texts upon the subject, that as neither the reformation of the church, nor the atonement of Christ, to divine justice, will fully be completed, nor the wrath of God upon the ungodly, fully appeased; so no mant, the saints and martyrs, excepted, shall be able to enter into it, until those purposes shall be entirely accomplished," or the & seven plagues of the leven angels”? ? be fulfilled. These purposes will not be accomplished, according
* Rev. xii.
of Rev. vii. 15.
to St. Paul, until Christ “ shall put down all rule, " and all authority, and power. For he must “ reign until he haih put all his enemies under his “ feet. The last enemy that shall be destroyed is « death. And when all things Thall be subdued
unto him, then shall the Son also himself be sub“ ject unto Him that put all things under him, that “ God may be all in all*.” In the same path with this great apogle, the prophet travels without the least deviation, and places the final opening of this temple, that the redeemed, through · Christ, may enter, after the seven vials and the utter destruction of all his enemies, even of Satan and death itself; even after the destruction of the world, the last resurrection and judgment, and the creation of the new heavens and the new earth; and then represents its.gf " coming down from God with the new “ Jerusalem, and the blessed reign of God, and the “ Lamb in it, for ever and ever.”
• SIXTEENTH CHAPTER OF THE REVELATION. . On the seven Vials of the Wrath of God. AND I heard a great voice sea; and it became as the out of the temple, saying unto
blood of a dead man : and
blood of a de: the feven angels. 'Go your every living loul died in the ways, and pour out the vials
sea. of the wrath of God upon the 4 And the third angel earth. "
poured out his vial upon the 2. And the first went, and
rivers and fountains of wapoured out his vial upon the ters, and they became blood. earth; and there fell a noi 5 And I heard the angel fome and grievous fore upon
of the waters say, Thou art the men which had the mark
righteous, O Lord, which pf the beast, and upon them
art, and wait, and shalt be, which worshipped his image.
because thou hast judged 3 And the second angel
thus. poured out his vial upon the 6. For they have shed the
* ? Cor. XV. 24, 25, 26, 23.
+ Rev. xix. 3. ,
blood of saints, and prophets, 14 For they are the fpirits and thou hast given them of devils, working miracles, blood to drink; for they are which go forth unto ' the worthy.
kings of the earth and of the 7 And I heard another whole world, to gather them out of the altar say, Even so, to the battle of the great day Lord God Almighty; true of God Almighty. and righteous, are thy judg- 15 Behold, I come as a 'ments.
thief. Blessed is he that 8 And the fourth ang é watcheth, and keepeth his poured out his vial upon the garments, left he walk 'naked, fun; and power was given and they fee his shame. unto him to scorch men with 16 And he gathered them fire,
together into à place called 9 And men were scorched in the Hebrew tongue Arwith great heat, and blaf- mageddon. phemed the name of God, 17 And the seventh angel which had power over these poured out his vial into the plagues : and 'they repented air; and there came a great not to give him glory. voice out of the temple of
10 And the fifth angel heaven, from the throne, laypoured out his vial upon the ing, It is done. seat of the beast; and his 18. And there were voices, kingdom was full of darkness; and thunders, and lightnings; and they gnawed their tongues and there was a great earthfor painly
. quake, such as was pot fince 11 And blafphemed the men were upon the earth, fo God of heaven because of mighty an earthquake, and to their pains and their fores, and great, repented not of their deeds. 19. And the great city was
12 And the sixth angel divided into three parts, and poured out his vial upon the the cities of the nations fell: great river Euphrates; and and great Babylon came in the water thereof was dried remembrance before God, to up, that the way of the kings give unto her the cup of the of the East might be prepared. wine of the fierceness of his
13. And I saw three un. wrath. clean spirits like frogs come 20 And every island filed out of the mouth of the away, and the mountains. dragon, and out of the mouth were not found. of the beast, and out of the 21 And there fell upon miouth of the false prophet, men a great hail out of hea
ven, every stone about the , the plagne of the hail; for weight of a talent: and men the plague thereof was exblafphemed God because of ceeding great,
Ver. 1.-" And I heard a great voice out of 65 the temple of heaven, saying to the seven $6 angels, Go your way, and pour out the vials “ of the wrath of God upon the earth."
Ver. 2.-" And the first angel went and " poured out his vial on the earth; and there “ fell a noisome and grievous fore on the men 66 which had the mark of the beast, and upon « them which worshipped his image.”
WE have seen that the prophetic contents of the seven seals, relating to the rise and exaltation of the church over the heathen world, were revealed by Christ himself; and the visitations of God upon the church, by angels; but here we find that the last plagues, or the last tremendous judgments of an offended God, represented under the figures of " the seven vials of " his wrath," are revealed to the prophet, by a great voice out of the temple “ of heaven," or immediately from GOD HIMSELF. Hence, alone, there is reason to expect, that they are to be more exemplary and more decisive, than any of his former judgments upon the children of men, since the flood. But to remove all doubt upon this point, the vials are expressly called * " the last plaques.” They are to be G full of the wrath of God, who liveth for ever ss and evergh." And we are told*, that “ when. " the seventh angel (having the third and last woe
* Rev. xv. 1.
+ Ibid. 7.
Rev. x. 7.
s trumpet) shall begin to sound, the mystery of God " thall be finished, as he has declared to his servants " the prophets.” And, moreover, that when the seventh angel shall have “ poured out his vial into " the air * " there shall come “a grcat voice out of c. the temple of heaven, from the throne, saying, “ IT IS DONE.”
Such being the decisive and tremendous nature of these vials, it is a question worthy of consideration, upon whom they are to be poured out? There is no reason to believe, from any part of holy writ, that they are to be emptied upon that remnant of mankind, who shall “ fear God, and give him the glory.” Indeed this is the very condition offered by Christ himself, upon the performance of which they thould avoid the threatening judgmentsyf. Belides, these are " the children of promisex," " the children of “ God $.” “ And God will not break his promise, “ nor destroy his children :" " for God will dwell. 66 with them, and they shall be his people ll." These vials, then, are destined to be poured out upon the hardened and incorrigible “ children of disobe“ dience,” in whom Satan “ worketh," and has persuaded" them to believe they can live - without Go God in the world.”
Another question, which is of great importance, is, when is it, that the prophet gives us reason to, look for their effects? We have seen that he has divided his subject into three periods of events, inder the allegories of seals, trumpets, and vials. The events of the two firit, we have also seen, have come to pais, and the prophecies respecting them been ful: filled in the order foretold. Nothing then remains but the events of the third period, or of the seven
Rev. xiv.7. xi. 18. xix. 5. ; ili. 26. Rev. xxi. 3. & Eph. ii. 2.