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think that God hath fet forth us the Apostles, &c.
that our Bleffed Lord exprefly afferted, that Elias there meant was already come, Mat. 17. 12. To which I Anfwer, That our Lord meant no more than that John the Baptift, the Power and Spirit of Elias, or Elias in the Spirit was come, but not in the Body; in which that he was yet to appear before his Second Coming, our Saviour himself doth not deny, but rather plainly affert. For when the Disciples taking our Saviour's Words in too large a Senfe, asked him, How then Say the Scribes that Elias must first come? Our Lord anfwers, that Elias fhall come, and shall restore all Things; which Words being spoken in the future Tenfe, cannot be apply'd to John the Baptift who was already come, but had not reftored all Things, which is ftill referved to the Coming of Elias in Perfon at the End of the World, or the times of Reftitution of all Things, which God has spoken by the Mouth of all his Prophets fince the World began, Acts 3. 21. And the Author of the Book of Eccluf. 48. 10. feems plainly to understand the Prophecy of Malachy, concerning the Perfon of Elias, of whom he had been speaking, saying, that be was ordained for Reproofs in their times, to pacifie the Wrath of the Lord's Judgment, before it break forth into Fury; and to turn the Heart of the Father to the Son, and to restore the Tribes of Ifrael.---Thefe then are the two Olive-Trees, and the two Candlesticks, standing before the God of the Earth, Rev. 11. 4. Zech. 4. 3. called Olive-Trees from the Divine Unation, as
being anointed Kings and Priests in Christ's Kingdom; and Candlesticks, as bearing in them the burning and fhining Light of the Spirit of Truth, who is the Light of the World; in which Sense the Seven Churches, Rev. 1. 20. are alfo called Candlesticks. And whereas Grotius upon the Place, has brought it as an Argument to prove, that hereby are not meant Two Perfons, but Two Churches, because they are called Candlesticks, which the Angel interprets to be Churches, Rev. 1. 20. we have, I think, as good a Reafon to conclude they are Perfons, because they are called Olive-Trees, which Zech. 4. 14. are interpreted of Two Perfons, Jofbuah and Zerubbabel. Many Scripture-Characters of particular Perfons being applicable to Churches (as may be fhewn at large) and vice verfa. But to proceed, in St. John's Account of these Two Witneffes, If any Man will hurt these (Rev. 11. 5.) .e. make any Attempt upon their Perfons, either by natural or magical Violence, Fire proceedeth out of their Mouth (a plain Allufion to what Elijah did, 2 Kings 1.) and devoureth their Enemies; and if any Man will hurt them, he must in this manner be killed. V.6. Thefe have Power to fhut Heaven that it rain not in the Days of their Prophecy; (plainly alluding to what Elijah did, 1 Kings 17.1. 18. 1, 41. as in the following Words to Mofes's turning the Waters into Blood, Exod. 7.17.) and have Power over Waters to turn them into Blood, and to fmite the Earth with all Plagues as often us they will. Which Words
may, I think, fairly be understood in a literal Senfe, without any Violence to the Text of the Nature of Things. V.7. And when they fhall have finished their Testimony, the Beast that afcends out of the bottomless Pit (i. e. Antichrift) fhall make War against them (with more Violence than before) and shall overcome them and kill them. V. 8. And their dead Bodies fhall lie in the Streets (i. e. in one of the Streets, by an ufual Hebraifm) of the great City which spiritually is called Sodom and Egypt, where alfo our Lord was crucified. This Great City is unquestionably Jerufalem, called Sodom, Ifa. 1. 10. and may poffibly be meant by Egypt in many Places of Prophetical Scripture. But that which puts it beyond all doubt is, that diftinguifhing Character of being the Place where our Lord was crucified, which has been moft violently wrefted by our Modern Expofitors to fignifie Rome, or Christendom. V.9. And they of the People and Kindreds, and Tongues and Nations, fhall fee their dead Bodies three Days and half, and fhall not fuffer their dead Bodies to be put in Graves. God in this refpect making their Madnefs fubfervient to his Glory. For by being thus expofed in the open Street, their Refurrection and Afcenfion fhall be the more vifible and confpicuous to all that behold them. V. 10. And they that dwell upon the Earth (i. e. The Antichriftian Company) shall rejoyce, over them, and shall make merry and fend Gifts to one another Cas in time of Publick Joy, Hefter 9. 19, 22. Neb. 8. 10-12.) because these two Prophets
tormented them that dwell on the Earth; (as
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