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good Providence continue to be our D: fence and Protection. But for Earthquake they have been more common in many Parts of Europe and America within thei: few Years, than they have been for some Ages before.
ANOTHER Sign is the Persecutivas which the faithful Witnesses of the Truth of God shall suffer from the Opposition those that have corrupted the Truth by th: Workings of the Antichriftian Spirit, v. Then shall they deliver you (the Teachers ani Affertors of Apoftolical Truth) up to be flikted, and shall kill you, and you fhall be bates of all Men for my Name's sake. And r. 10. many jhall be offended, and shall betraj one avther, and bate one another. Upon which
Words I shall mention no other Commen * Cat.:15. than that of St. Cyril of Jerusalem
li Schon hearest that Bishops contend again
Bishops, and Priefts against Priests, and
People against People, even to Blood, “ be not disturbed at it ; for it was foretold cs that it should come to pass. (And again
Amongst the Apostles themselves there was Treachery, and doeft thou won der that there is Variance amongst Bishops?
ANOTHER Sign is, v. 11. Many Falle Prophet's fhall arise, and shall deceive many. This Sign in particular has been visibly fulfilled in the sight of all Men, by one of the most notorious and remarkable Instances of De. lufion that ever was acted in any period of the Church, a Delusion masked under fo
vast a Mixture of noble Primitive and Evan
gelical Truths, and such Appearances of · Piety and dis-interested Zeal for God that it
deceiv'd many well-meaning pious Souls, who followed them in the Simplicity of their
Hearts. These may, I think, in the most į proper Sense be called False Prophets, though : they taught and published many great and
noble Truths. Prophets, I think they may sein be called, in the common Acceptation of the
ceni, Word, for Persons that speak' by the Di * re&ion and Assistance of some supernatural Agent. For this I am perswaded was their Case, neither can I be induced to think that
the whole was a Sham and Contrivance of > some cunning Leaders amongst them who
were at the Bottom of the whole Design, to serve some By-ends of their own; and I be· lieve it appears by this Time, that there have been fundry Things done amongst them, that greatly exceed the Powers of Nature. Secondly, They are False Prophets, as having not justify'd their Mission by that decisive Miracle to which they made their * See, The last and most folemn Appeal. And Lastly, New Prethey may be called False, as speaking in and tenders to by a * false Spirit, and making those very examin'd
Prophecy Truths they uttered subservient to the pro- and their moting of Error and Falsehood, as might Pretences be shown at large, and which I fear will be Shewn to be but too fadly evident by the lamentable Ef groundless feats which it has and will have according to by N.
and false, the different Impressions which it has made Spinckes, upon the Minds and Principles of different M. A. Persons. I cannot pass by this Sign, with- Printed for
R. Sare, qui Р
1709. Offichies' itirit of Pathusiasm
out taking Notice of St. Cyril's Comment : on it, p. 209. as being but too apposite our Case upon another Confideration, M. False Prophets (or Teachers) shall arise and..
Men (says he) are fallen from “ the true Faith, some confounding the Persons of the Ever-blessed Trinity
, a. the Patripassians and Sabellians, others e
king the Blessed Jesus to be a meer Cri † So do ture, as the t Arians : And formerly Her the Soci
ticks were detected and made manifeft, nians of
now the Church is full of private lurkir our Time. “ Hereticks. Men are fallen from the True
“ and have itching Ears, if you preach them pleasing Doctrines, and prophel
. “ smooth things, they run after you, an. "hear you with Greediness. But tell ther. ,
of Repentance, Mortification, and th: “ Love of God, they all forsake you. Me.
are fallen oft from good Works, and h rather secm good than be fo. This is th: falling away, (viz. that is mention'. 2 The]]. 2. 3.) and the Enemy (viz. Anti christ) cannot be far of.
The next Sign is v. 12. That because of the abundance of iniquity, the love of many shall wa cold. Upon this faith St. Cyril, Ibid. “ Can
any here present say, that he does in all Respects love his Neighbour with Since rity? Are not our Words very often
fričadiy, our Countenances smiling, S and our Eyes chearful, whilst the Heart
contrives Deceit, and he that speak
Peace, has War in his Heart.. (A little after).." The Want of brotherly Love wil
make Way for Antichrist. The Devil makes Divisions and Strife amongst Men, that the Enemy (viz. Antichrist) may be more easily let in. The fame Account given by Lactantius of the Times preling the Reign of Antichrift, pag. 646. There shall be fo little Righteousnefs in the World, and such Abundance of Covetousness, Impiety and Luft, that the few good Men that shall be left shall become a Prey to the Wicked. They shall live in Plenty, whilst the Righteous shall labour under Contempt and Poverty; Right shall be oppressed, the Laws shall lose their Force, there shall be neither Sincerity, nor Peace, nor common Civility, nor Truth among Men. he same Account is given by Methodius Parensis, * And alas! who is there at this day at may not take up Feremiah's Lamenta- * P,396.
Orthodox.) on, chap. 9. and wish in the Bitterness of
Édit.Bafil. is Soul for a Lodging of way-faring Men, in the 'ent retirement of a wilderness, that he might ave his people and go from them. For they be all dulterers (loving the World, and the Riches nd Pleasures of it more than God) Fam.4.4. in Assembly of treacherous men, they bend their ingues like bowes for lies, but they are not valiant or the truth upon the Earth. Take
ye ne of his neighbour, and trust ye not in any brober, for every brother will utterly supplant, and very neighbour will walk with slanders, and they vill deceive every one his neigbour, and will not peak the truth; they have taught their tongue to peak lies, and weary themselves to commit ini
quity ; their tongue is as an arrow shot out, it Speakerb deceit ; one speakerb peaceably to his Neigh, bour with his mouth, but in beart be hayeth wait, v. 2, 3, 4, 8.
But you will say, if these be the infallible Tokens, whereby we are to judge of the near approach of that Time; How comes it to pass that fo many Holy and Good Men have been mistaken in their Judgments about it? Since so many of the Ancient Fathers, who have written about these Matters, have taken Pains to apply them all to their own Times, and to perfwade themselves and others, that the Day of the Lord was at hand ? To this I anfwer, That the Illustrious Ideas which the Ancients had receiv'd from the Holy Scriprures as then understood, and from the Traditions of their Venerable Predeceffors in the Faith, concerning the Glorious Kingdom of the Messiah, and the Reftitution of Nature (which will be the Confequences of the Great Amiction) were so transporting and ravishing, that their inflamed Affections could not chuse but outrun, or at least lay a strong Byass upon their Judgments, and make them often believe, that what they wish'd to be so near at hand, could not be far off. So even the Disciples themselves, as soon as ever our Lord was Risen from the Dead, could not chuse but think that the Kingdom should immediately be restor’d to Israel, Act. 1. 6. But if we, upon whom the Ends of the World are coinc, have not the same long