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ferences, Litanies, Devotions, and Hymns, which Mr. Shipley has strung together, much less do we design to pollute our pages by extracts from them. Had our space allowed, we would gladly have contrasted with Mr. Shipley's appeal to Catholic custom, in defence of the “ direct” and “indirect” forms of Invocation, some of those striking passages adduced by Archbishop Usher from the writings of Theophylact and of Chrysostom, in which they urge upon their readers or hearers the consideration that “God would be petitioned unto by us that are guilty, in our own cause, rather than by others for us;" and remind them that when Peter and James came to our Lord for the woman of Canaan, “He did not yield, but when she herself did remain, He presently gave that which was desired.” But we have already, we trust, said enough to expose the true character of Mr. Shipley's compilation. We will only add a recommendation to the Editor, ere he again parades the confession that he would “prefer to be wrong with the goodly company of the Fathers of the fourth and following early ages of the Church, than to be right with the Protestant Reformers of the sixteenth century,' to adopt some better methods than those to which he appears to have had recourse in the present instance, to make sure of his premises before he proclaims to the world his conclusions.
ARMAGEDDON. To the Editor of the Christian Observer. SIR, --I have received a MS. paper from my excellent friend, the Rev. E. Biley of Nice, on the very difficult subject with which I have headed this letter, of Armageddon. The paper is probably too long, and in an elaborate form otherwise perhaps not quite suited, for your Periodical. But it contains suggestions alike original and interesting; and which, I incline to think, point to the true solution of the difficulty. The more intelligent, therefore, of your readers (at least such as take an interest in prophetic subjects) will probably be thankful to see a brief abstract of it. Accordingly, though I have not received my friend's authorisation for so doing, -and cannot indeed obtain it without much delay, as he is abroad, I know not where,-I will take the responsibility on myself, and send an abstract; very much, however, in brief.
It will be remembered that the word Armageddon, or, as it is
variously written in other editions of the Greek original, Armagedon, or Harmageddon, occurs in verse 16 of chap. xvi. of the Apocalypse; where events are told of as destined to occur incipiently under the Sixth Vial, and to have completion, it would seem, under the Seventh and last Vial. Under the Sixth it had been declared by the revealing Angel, that, contemporarily with the drying up of the waters of the Euphrates, there should go forth three deluding spirits from out of the mouths of the Dragon, the Beast, and the False Prophet, the result of which would be “the gathering together of the kings of the earth, and of the whole world, to the war (tóleuov) of that great day of God Almighty.” This drying up of the waters of the Euphrates, Mr. Biley agrees with me in understanding to mean the gradual drying up of the Turkish and Mahometan power; and also, in agreement with me, that the three deluding spirits which were to go forth are the spirits of Infidelity, Popery, and Priestcraft: the fulfilment of both which predictions, so understood, during the last thirty years, has been notorious. Then next comes verse 15, with its solemn warning, and intimation of the imminent nearness, at the time intended, of Christ's coming: “Behold I come as a thief; blessed is he that watcheth and keepeth his garments, lest he walk naked, and they see his shame;" and then verse 16, containing the word in question: “And they (the three deluding spirits apparently) gathered them together (i.e. the kings of the earth) to the place which is called in the Hebrew tongue, Armageddon.”
Evidently what is designated in verse 14 as “the war of the great day of God Almighty,” is by verse 16 locally connected with the place Armageddon there spoken of. And thus the said final war, the result of which is described in what follows under the Seventh Vial, has long been called the War of Armageddon.
But what the meaning of that word, which is evidently meant to be one of real significance ?
It is of course a compound word; compounded apparently of Ar and Mageddo, or (with one d) Magedo; the Hebrew words answer. ing to which may be somewhat variously represented. Thus, as regards Ar, the Greek or English vowel a might be supposed to answer either to the Hebrew X, 1, or y. Now, taking X, no possible sense to suit will be found to attach to 78. On the other hand, with 17 as the prefix, we have the Hebrew word 77 signifying a mountain. And accordingly, by perhaps most Apocalyptic commentators of repute, e.g. Vitringa and Grotius, this view of it has been adopted. And, in explanation of the other part of the word, referring to the verb 772 (gādad) which signifies either to gather or to destroy, the one, Grotius, supposes Armageddon to mean the mountain of gathering; the other, Vitringa, the mountain of destruction.
But against this Mr. Biley objects, that the Hebrew word for mountain is generally 7107 (Hor) with the ☺ and the aspirate; and the ap is never used as its equivalent in the Septuagint. Moreover, so explained, Armageddon becomes a word of quite indefinite local signification; seeing that any mountain may be a mountain of gathering, any mountain a mountain of destruction; whereas Armageddon here is evidently intended to be a definite local designative. And if, to obviate this objection, the suggestion be added, as in fact it has by some been added, that the locality of Megiddo may perhaps thereby be intimated, which place was the scene of the great battle in which Sisera was vanquished (as well as that of King Josiah's defeat in later years by the Egyptians), and may in fact have derived its name from 772, as having been the local scene of that great slaughter, Mr. Biley objects that we nowhere read of the mountain of Megiddo, but only of the valley of Megiddo, or the waters of Megiddo ; Megiddo being a locality in the great plain of Esdraelon.
Hence my friend has felt constrained to try the prefix of y to the 7, as indicating the more probably intended Hebrew original to the Ar in Armageddon; with which as the first letter, the Hebrew word may mean a city. For, though the Hebrew for city is usually with a yod, between the first and last letters of the word for city (thus, 7'y), yet, as Gesenius says, 7 is its equivalent. So axin the city of Moab; besides that the plural of Ty is phy. Further, with regard to the other part of the word Armagedon (the reading being preferred with one d, and the ending on passed over as a mere terminative), Mr. Biley suggests that it is to be looked on as a derivative from me, a verb which in Arabic means to excel in honor ; the noun substantive, with the same letters, which signifies nobility, honor, being the equivalent, Gesenius says, of the Hebrew 722, as m and n are often interchanged in Hebrew and Arabic. This word is used in 1 Kings i. 35 and Dan. ix. 25, to signify a prince. Thus derived, the word Armageddon, or Armagedon, might mean either a city excellent in dignity, or a city of a prince, a royal city; and, if written with the aspirate, Harmageddon, the city of the prince.
Thus far, I believe, Mr. Biley had been anticipated in his suggestions. For I have found a MS. note of my own, written about the time of the Crimean war, mentioning that some writers had applied the word, thus derived and explained, to Sebastopol, the siege of which was then proceeding; as if the war of Armageddon might mean the war of that imperial city, Sebastopol.
But in his application of the prophecy Mr. Biley is, I believe, original; or, I should rather perhaps say, in his applications of it. For he proposes the alternative of two interpretations.
1st, He suggests that the war of Constantinople may be hereby prefigured; Constantinople having been the Roman Sebastopol, or City of Augustus; not to add its celebrity and excelling dignity above all other capital cities from its very situation ;-an excellence so eloquently set forth by Gibbon, in reference to the past, and so fully recognized in the great political world at the present time. An explanation this, Mr. Biley observes, which well suits the Apocalyptic context, speaking of the drying up of the waters of the mystic Euphrates, or power of the Turkish empire; the very key to which power is the possession of Constantinople.
Or rather, 2dly, (for this is what, with reason I think, my friend himself prefers) it may mean Jerusalem, so often told of in Holy Scripture, as what is destined, after the Jews' conversion, to be the city of which “ glorious things" will be spoken, and the “city of the great King.” So by our Lord himself (Matt. v. 35), as well as in the Old Testament. Particularly let Dan. ix. 25 be here noted, where, together with the prediction of his sufferings, Jesus Christ is called Messiah the Prince, the same Hebrew word 720 being used as here, for Prince; also Ezekiel’s prophecy in his last chapters, which speak of Messiah entering his redeemed city as its recognized Prince. But this, not till after that terrible, universal, final war, the locality of which more than one of the Old Testament prophets seem to point to as Jerusalem.—And who can help being struck with the fact of that Holy City having strangely become more and more during the last twenty or thirty years an object of high interest in the eyes of all Christendom? or, again, with the obvious fact, that the war which sooner or later must supervene on the breaking up of the Turkish Empire, will necessarily involve the Holy Land, and its Holy City Jerusalem ?
I onght not to conclude without observing that, on all points of Hebrew criticism that are involved in the subject, Mr. Biley fortifies his positions most elaborately, and at large.
I am, Mr. Editor, faithfully yours,
E. B. ELLIOTT.
NOTICES OF BOOKS.
Bible Animals. By the Rev. T. G. Wood, M.A., F.L.S., 8c. London : Longmans. 1869.—The contents of this valuable book may already be familiar to a good many of our readers, who may have taken it in as it appeared in numbers. We would, however, be very glad to promote the circulation of it amongst those who are not acquainted with it. It is full of most interesting information, peculiarly well calculated to amuse aud instruct young people, and would form a most admirable present or school prize, abounding as it does with excellent illustrations. The Biblical student, too, of riper years, will find it a most useful adjunct to his library, as great pains have manifestly been taken to present the results of considerable learning, and to exhibit the researches of recent travellers, such as Dr. Tristram, Sir S. Baker, and others. We extract a very curious remark about the Cat:
" It is a very remarkable circumstance that the word cat is not once mentioned in the whole of the Canonical Scriptures, and only once in the Apocrypha. The Egyptians, as is well known, kept cats domesti. cated in their houses, a fact which is mentioned by Herodotus, B. II. ch. 66, 67. There is no prohibition of the animal, even indirectly, in the Mosaic law; but it may be the case that the Israelites repudiated the cat simply because it was favoured by their former masters. The only passage in the Apocrypha is a passing allusion in Baruch (vi. 22) where it is said of the idols, that bats and birds shall sit on their bodies, and the cats also.'
The Student's Book of Common Prayer: with an historical and explanatory Treatise. By William Gilson Humphry, B.D., 8c. London : Bell and Daldy; Cambridge: Deighton. 1869. – Mr. Humphry is one of the Ritual Commissioners. In his treatise, which forms an appendix to the Prayer-Book, he has embodied a good deal of useful information, in small compass, about the history of the Prayer-Book, and has supplied a great number of the original collects and prayers from which our own are taken. We do not notice much that would not be already familiar to students of ritual works, but the condensed manner in which what is said is presented will make it a handy book of reference just now when such questions are so much discussed.
Heaven's Whispers in the Storm. By the late Rev. Francis J. Jameson, M.A., Rector of Coton. With a Memoir of the Author. London : Hunt. 1869.—The author of this little work was a brother SO “faithful and beloved” in the Chnrch, that it is with peculiar interest we call the attention of our readers to it. “He, being dead, yet speaketh” to many friends, in these brief essays, his utterances in his last lingering illness. In such readers they will awaken much fond recollection of the author, and will form a touching and appropriate memorial of him; perhaps awakening regret that one so holy and so exemplary should have been so early removed, when the need of the Church for such is sore,—but regret mingled with glad thoughts, that “visions have dawned on him of the rest that remaineth for the people of God.” Sorrow and trial, however, are 80 universal, that many others may be glad to avail themselves of the comfort and instruction which this little volume is well calculated to impart out of the fulness of the author's own experience.
England versus Rome. A Brief Handbook of the Roman Catholic Controversy. By H. B. Swete, M.A., Fellow of Gonville and Caius College, Cambridge. London: Rivingtons. 1868.- We have much pleasure in recommending this little manual which Mr. Swete has put forth. The chief questions which separate the Church of England from Rome are discussed in a very temperate manner, and with sufficient learning. “The views of both Churches have been expressed in the language of their own authoritative documents.” The assertions and arguments of Romish doctors and councils in sapport of their opinions are alleged, and the counter-statements by which these assertions and arguments are met are carefully marshalled in reply. As a brief specimen of the author's method, we refer to his seventh chapter, “On the Language of Common Prayer.” He first adduces the statements of the Council of Trent on this subject, and in a parallel column the doctrine of our 24th Article; to these he