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THE SANCTUARY CLEANSED-OR EPOCH OF
DESIGN OF THE DIFFERENT VISIONS OF DANIEL.
Having already shown, from the seventh chapter of Daniel and other portions of scripture, that the time of the establishment of the universal, everlasting kingdom of God is near, the way is now prepared for the discussion of another point, viz., the epoch of the kingdom.
The first revelation of the events of futurity made to Daniel, was communicated to him in relation to Nebuchadnezzar's dream, Dan. 2d chapter. That divine communication assures us, that after the existence of four such kingdoms as those predicted in that dream, the God of heaven will set up a kingdom, which shall never be destroyed. But that revelation gave no intimation of the changes which were to take place in those kingdoms, and the time of the reign or triumph of the various powers, as signs of the approach of that kingdom. This deficiency, however, was supplied by the vision in the seventh chapter, where the various changes of the Roman kingdom are pointed out, and the specific period of the reign of the little horn, as the precursor of the kingdom of God, is distinctly named. The exact fulfilment of those 1260 years, and the subsequent events, affords conclusive evidence of the near approach of the glorious event. But yet a deficiency remains : No intimation is given in either of the foregoing revelations as to the time when the great work is to be accomplished, and the kingdom be established. But the vision in the eighth chapter supplies this deficiency.
The vision in the eighth chapter, unlike the former, commences with the reign of the MedoPersian monarchy. The design of the vision of the four beasts, was, to give a connected chain of events from the days of Daniel, down to the little horn of the fourth beast, and his destruction at the second coming of Christ; and also to give the time of his reign, as a part of the Roman beast, together with the circumstances which are to fix the date of the 1260 years. The little horn, his character and conduct, having been thus predicted ; the next vision is designed to present his origin, and the means by which he should become mighty, and also to determine the time of his destruction.
THE RAM AND GOAT-HIS FOUR HORNS AND THB
Dan. 8th chap., verses 3, 4. “Then I lifted up mine eyes, and saw, and, behold, there stood before the river a ram which had two horns; and the two horns were high; but one was higher than the other; and the higher came up last. I saw the ram pushing westward, and northward,
and southward ; so that no beast might stand be fore him, neither was there any that could deliver out of his hand; but he did according to his will, and became great." The above is explained, verse 20th. “ The ram which thou sawest having two horns, are the kings of Media and Persia." The kingdoms of the Medes and Persians were united under Cyrus, the Persian general, by whom Babylon was taken, and became one of the most powerful kingdoms of antiquity.
Verses 5-8. "And as I was considering, behold, an he-goat came from the west, on the face of the whole earth, and he touched not the ground; and the goat had a notable horn between his eyes. And he came to the ram, and ran unto him in the fury of his power. And I saw him come close unto the ram, and he was moved with choler against him, and smote the ram, and brake his two horns ;-and there was none that could deliver the ram out of his hand. Therefore the he-goat waxed great; and when he was strong the great horn was broken; and for it came up four notable ones, toward the four winds of heaven.” This passage is explained in the 21st and 22d verses. “And the rough goat is the king of Grecia; and the great horn that is between his eyes, is the first king. Now that being broken, whereas four stood up for it, four kingdoms shall stand up out of the nation, but not in his power." All expositors, I believe, are agreed that this text points out the Macedonian kingdom; and the notable horn, Alexander the Great; who, in the height of his conquests, sud. denly died at Babylon, and whose dominion was divided among four of his generals, towards the four winds :-Persia in the east; Macedon or Greece in the west; Syria in the north; and Egypt in the south. For further particulars, see Rollin's Ancient History.
Verses 9-12th. “And out of one of them came forth a little horn, which waxed exceeding great, toward the south, and toward the east, and toward the pleasant land. And it waxed great, even to the host of heaven; and it cast down some of the host and of the stars to the ground, and stamped upon them. Yea, he magnified himself even to the prince of the host, and by him the daily sacrifice was taken away, and the place of his sanctuary was cast down. And an host was given him against the daily sacrifice by reason of transgression, and it cast down truth to the ground, and it practised and prospered.” The above is explained, verses 230—25th. “And in the latter time of their kingdom, when the transgressors are come to the full, a king of fierce countenance, and understanding dark sentences, shall stand up. And his power shall be mighty, but not by his own power; and he shall destroy wonderfully, and shall prosper, and practise, and shall destroy the mighty and the holy people. And through his policy also he shall cause craft to prosper in his hand ; and he shall magnify himself in his heart, and by peace shall destroy many; he shall also stand up against the Prince of princes; but he shall be broken without hand.”
The question to be discussed, is, Who or what is represented by the little horn, which came forth out of one of the four notable horns ? • Some say, “ Antiochus Epiphanes.” But to this I object-1. Because Antiochus, instead of being another kingdom, growing out of the Syrian government, was that horn or government itself. 2. It never has yet been shown that Antiochus trod under foot, as it is assumed he did, the sanctuary and the host, for 2300 days. It is not known precisely how long he oppressed the Jews. But if the period is 2300 literal days, those who thus apply it are bound to show a literal fulfilment.
Again, it is said, “ Mohammedism, and it came out of the northern division, Syria; because in Syria its first exploits were performed." I deny it. And even if it could be proved that its “first drama of wickedness" was acted in Syria, still an insurmountable difficulty remains. · Mohammedism did not originate in or come out of Syria, but Arabia. And in Arabia the Mohammedan religion was first promulgated and gained a footing.
What, then, is represented by the little horn? I reply, In the seventh chapter it has been demonstrated to mean the Papal system. And it means the same thing in this place. . +
The little horn was to come out of one of the notable horns in the “LATTER time of their. (the four horns) kingdom, when the transgressors (northern barbarians) had come to the full.” A. D. 325, Constantine, the Roman emperor, became sole master of the Roman world, and from that time openly and decidedly espoused the Christian cause. From that time a flood of worldly riches, honor and power, flowed in upon the church. The man of sin began rapidly to develop himself. A D. 330, he removed the seat of empire from Rome