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fhall obey (fpeaking of Antichrift.) The terrible and dreadful Pomp of this Army is largely defcribed by the Prophet Joel and Nabum, and fome fmall touches of it in Habakkuk, Zephaniah, Daniel and Zachary'; which, because it may appear to be a new and unwarrantable Affertion, I fhall endeavour to ftrengthen by two or three Confiderations. The Prophecy then of Joel has not been yet perfectly fulfilled, either in the Deftruction of the City and People of the Jews, by Nebuchadnezzar, or in that by Titus Vefpafian. Now this Expreffion is much like that of our Saviour, Mark 13. 19. In thofe Days fhall be Afflictions, Such as was not from the Beginning of the Creation which God created, even to this time, nor ever fhall be. Which Words, as they relate indeed to the Deftruction of Jerufalem by the Romans, yet are ultimately to be compleated at the End of the World: So likewife those of the Prophet. Joel. For in v. 2. a Day which is called The Day of the Lord, is defcribed as a Day of Darkness, and of Gloominess, of Clouds, and of thick Darkness: And this fhall herein confift, that a mighty and a strong People, of whom there has not been ever the like, neither shall be any more to all Eternity, hall come upon Jerufalem as the Morn ing Spread upon the Mountains. 2dly, From the 12th to the 16th Verse of the 2d Chap ter, the Prophet gives Counsel how the Inhabitants of Jerufalem ought to behave themselves, and what they ought to do to be exempted from the Calamity, which does
does not fo properly agree to the Babylonish Expedition, becaufe it was known out of the Prophet, that not only at that time, there would be no Remedy; but that the Jews were bound, according to God's Will, to furrender themselves up to the Babylonians; which, when they refused to do, the King, together with the Nobles, made their Mifery fall heavier upon themselves, their City, and their People, Fer. 21.9. 38. 2. 52. 7, 8, 9, 10, 11. Further, in the 17th Verfe foel profecutes the Counsel, by advifing the Priests to weep between the Porch and the Altar, and to fay, Spare thy People, O Lord! &c. whereupon follows in the 18th Verfe, to the 27th, the Anfwer of this. Prayer, viz. that God would be jealous for his Land, and pity his People. Now it is not found that either the Priefts did then make fuch a Prayer, or that the promised Anfwer followed; the Temple, City, and whole Land being utterly deftroy'd and made defolate. Neither did this at all come to pass in the Destruction from the Romans; for the Temple was deftroy'd some Weeks before the City, and then no Relief followed, but fuch a Defolation as continueth to this very Day. 3dly, If the Promife of the Effufion of the Spirit upon all Flesh, v. 28. be accomplished fully and ultimately (as fome contend) at Pentecoft, then it was accomplished full Forty Years before the Defolation; which nevertheless the Prophet fays must come after. This Prophecy then is yet to be fulfilled; and what
can be meant by this great and terrible Army, but that of Antichrift, who is the Confummation of the Curfe, and who by the Magical Power of his Spirit fhall unite all his Followers in the Principle and Powers of Hell; to which also we may reasonably refer all thofe great Things in Prophecy, which cannot with any Congruity be apply'd to any other notable Period of Hiftory. The Prophet Joel begins in fuch a manner, as plainly to point out to us the laft and great Affliction of the Church. Compare Chap. 1. v. 2. Chap. 2. 2. with Dan. 12. 1. Matth. 24. 21. In the 4th Verfe of the firft Chapter, he nameth Four grand Caufes of the great Defolation. The Palmer-worm, Locuft, Canker-worm, and Caterpiller By which Four Species of Infects, which are frequently the natural Caufes of a Famine, he does probably point out to us Four grand Divifions of the Antichriftian Army. The Three last of these being apply'd in Scripture by way of Comparison to Men, we need not doubt but that the firft, bears the fame Relation in this Place. These Four Divisions may march under Antichrift their Head, at fome Distance from each other; the Second plundering what was left by the First'; the Third what was left by the Second; and the Fourth utterly confuming what. was left by the Third. These may properly be typified by the Four Angels, mentioned Rev. 9. 14, 15. and may really be under the Influence of the Four dark Hie
rarchies, mentioned Eph. 6. 12. Moreover,
which precedes the great Day of Humiliation on the Tenth; and fhews that a Miniftry will go forth to convince the World of Sin, Ifa. 58. 1. call them to a folemn Repentance and Humiliation, and forewarn them and prepare them against the coming of Antichrift, that they may be ready to oppose him. V. 2. A Day of Darknefs, &c. See Zeph. 1. 15. A Fire devoureth before them, and behind them a Flame burneth. Hence it appears, that they are the fame with the Judgments mentioned before, Chap. 1. v. 4. otherwise the Land devoured by those, could not have been as Eden before the Face of thefe. The Fire may be eával, and the Flame "Adus, which are reprefented marching together in the Northern Army, Rev. 6. 8. compared with Zech. 6.3, 6. Ifa. 28. 15, 18. It is obfervable in the fame Place of the Revelations, that Daval and "Adus, or the Northern Army, deftroy by Four Means, paura,
Javáre, and Sad 7 neign & ghs which, as they are the fame mention'd Ezek. 14. 21. fo may they very well correfpond to the Four Kinds of Evils enumerated Joel Chap. 1. 4. it being certain that Antichrift, the End and Accomplishment of the Four Beafts, contains in himfelf, and comes in the Properties of all the Four, Rev. 13.2..
V. 4. The Appearance of them is as the Appearance of Horfes, Jer. 6. 23. 8. 16. As Horfemen fo fhall they run, Ezek, 28. 4, 15. Hab. 1. 8. Expreffions denoting their Strength and Agility.