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phemed the God of heaven, because of their pains and their sores, and repented not of their deeds.” ....
The fifth vial brings a judgment upon the seat or throne of the beast, επί τον Θρωνον του Θηρίου. The result is darkness, thick darkness, as under the fifth trumpet. And the figure seems to represent that state of things which has long existed, and may be seen at this day in Papal countries. The hearts and minds of the ecclesiastical rulers are darkened, as by a judicial blindness from the Lord like Judah of old, they cannot see, neither can they understand, for their hearts have been made fat: and all sense and perception of spiritual things, appears to have been taken away from them. The seat or throne of the beast, refers to the seat of authority, or Papal governors; and the judgment is further to be discovered, in that spirit of indifference and of scepticism, which prevailed generally among the great and the learned, throughout the Roman Catholic continent, before the French Revolution. France had become the great emporium of infidelity and atheism : it was deemed by her wits, and by many of the higher classes, the test of superior intellect, to throw off the Christian religion. Atheistical opinions spread. Priestcraft, and then the priests themselves, were ridiculed, derided, and held up to general scorn— and then religion itself was brought into disrepute :
till at length the connecting links of society were loosened, and in process of time, the Revolution of 1789 burst forth with all its horrors. Thus may be traced the plagues of the five first vials.
The vials are found throughout to run nearly parallel with the trumpets; and the circumstances related of the five first, are too short and general, to justify any minute and particular application of them, to historical events. The two last vials, however, ga more into detail, as will be seen by the following chapter and the seventh, like the sixth seal, and like the seventh trumpet, announces the judgment at Messiah's coming.
Vials of Wrath concluded Sixth Vial+The River Euphrates-The Three Unclean Spirits, like is Frogs-Seventh Vial.-Rev. xvi. 12-21. rotid
Rev. xvi. 12. And the sixth angel poured out his vial upon the great river Euphrates: and the water thereof was dried up, that the way of the kings of the east might be prepared."
As the sixth trumpet has reference to the river Euphrates, so also has the sixth vial. And as, under the sixth trumpet the Turkish empire was founded, so commentators have supposed, that under the sixth vial that empire is destroyed, to make a way or passage, for the converted Jews (here called the kings of the east) to return into their own land."
If the type be accurately examined, it will be found hardly to admit of this interpretation. The Turkish empire, though founded under the sixth trumpet, is in no wise whatever identified with the river Euphrates, which under the sixth vial is dried up; neither is it described as being founded upon that river; nor is it formed by the waters of it; but it is formed
through the instrumentality of certain angels or messengers, who under the sixth trumpet were loosed from that river, having been before bound up in it. Had the four Turkish dynasties been typified as the waters of the Euphrates, the sixth trumpet must have represented those waters, as flowing out from the bed of the river, extending themselves over its banks, aud upon the countries round about. And in that case, the drying up of the waters, would indicate the exhaustion, or wasting away of that empire. But the symbol is far different. Four messengers are loosed from the river, to execute a judgment upon the lands. The drying up of the waters, therefore, cannot affect countries far beyond the waters of the river; and which have been subdued, and are possessed by the messengers who were loosed from the river. And if the integrity of the type be regarded, it may be asserted, without fear of contradiction, that whatever may be intended by the river Euphrates, and by the drying up of its waters, the overthrow or exhaustion of the Turkish empire, cannot possibly be signified. It being therefore necessary to seek for some other explanation, the following considerations are suggested:
The river Euphrates was the boundary of the land of Canaan. It separated the Jews from the Gentiles; and d possibly the interpretation of the symbol, may
depend upon this circumstance. The Jews, by their rejection of Messiah, are now separated from the Church of Christ, which spiritually is the Canaan of this day. The Gentile Christians are now dwelling in this mystical Canaan, as the acknowledged children of faithful Abraham; inasmuch as being Christ's, they are Abraham's seed, and heirs according to the promise, (Gal. iii. 29.) But if the unbelief of the Jews were removed, they would return into the śpiritual land of promise, even into that mystical Canaan which is now enjoyed only by Gentiles. It is very far from improbable, that the kings of the east, spoken of in this passage, are indeed the children of Judahs We see the veil of ignorance and unbelief upon their hearts unto this day-but it is evidently removing and when it is indeed removed, they will enter into their rest freely with us; and then, according to the promise, we shall all, as one fold under one shepherd, sit down together in the kingdom prepared for us, with Abraham, and with Isaac, and with Jacob.
this be the meaning of the symbol, the waters of the mystic Enphrates, are now drying up before our eyes. for the ignorance and unbelief under which the Jews have been held for so many centuries, seem now to be passing away.
Verses 13, 14.-"And I saw three unclean spirits like frogs, come out of the mouth of the dragon, and out of the