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hear the cry of blood, more than he will the cry of the saints before his blood was shed. For the very deed of murder for religion fake, hath the reward of vengeance in it.
So that God, the righteous judge, must needs do right to reward every one according to his works ; so that the suffering of persecution and death for truth's fake, as these faints did, as John speaketh of, shall have a blessed reward, as is faid in verse 11. Those that were under the altar for the word of God, and the testimony they held, they had white robes given unto every one of them ; and it was said to them, Rest yet for a little season, until their fellow servants also and their bretheren thai should be killed as they were, should be fulfiled. So that
you the seed of faith may know that these souls that were sain under the altar, were not yet in heaven, neither are those white robes yet put upon them, notwithstanding it is said, there were white robes given them. For furely if those fouls had been in the heaven of glory with their white robes of the righteousness of faith upon them, God would never have bid them rest a little season until their fellow servants, and brethren were killed, as they were.
So that it may be clear to you that have faith in the death of the soul, and of a resurrection, that there are no fouls go to heaven without bodies. So that souls cannot go to heaven, and put on white robes to stand in the presence of God, without bodies.
So that these fouls which cried for vengeance must lie still in the earth and rest a season, untill the rest of the feed of faith hath paffed from death, as you have. So that God may raise you all together, and cloath you all with white robes of righteousness and immortality, and glory, at the resurrection at the end of the world. - So that you may all be rewarded and clothed with white robes together, and not some ferved this year, and other some the next, but you shall all be happy together.
So that you must rest yet a little seafon, untill all things are accomplished, and then I will bless you with an everlasting crown of life, because you suffered death for my name, in witnessing to me, and I will avenge your blood upon mine and your enemies, that persecuted and put me and you to death.
They shall have their reward also, which reward of their deeds will amount to no less than to eternal damnation, where the black and dark fire of hell shall burn in their fouls to eternity - which shall cause them to cry, Oh the eternity, the eternity, with forrow, pain and shame. . And when you faints shall receive your eternal joys, then shall your enemies receive their eternal forrows which is not yet, neither will it be until all things be fulfilled which the scriptures have foretold of, which cannot be long, as men do vainly imagine, because the true witness of the spirit is now extant in the world, who hath declared and made manifest the mystery of the true God becoming flesh, and what the right devil is, with many other heavenly mysteries.
So that you that have faith in this commission of the spirit, shall at the end of the world receive, with the rest of the faints, white robes with them, and you will not think it long; for faith doth look upon eternity as real, as if it were in present being. So that John might say by his revelation in his vision, that he
faw under the altar the souls of them that were sain for the word of God, &c. and the white robe's that were given unto them. Because he by faith knew that God will give those that are cloathed with the white robes of the righteousness of faith, a crown of everlasting joy and glory, at the end of the world, which is as fure as if it were in present being Therefore by faith he may say he saw the saints that suffered for the testimony of Jesus, to have white robes given them, as if the thing were already done; for when things are certain to be done, and nothing can prevent it, a man may say it is done.
So it is with faith, it knowing that nothing can prevent God's design and purpose, in that he hath determined to save and bless those the seed of Adam, and to destroy and curse those the feed of the Serpent, to eternity.
So that eternity is looked upon by the feed of faith to be in present being. And this was John's revelation in the vision which he saw in the opening of the fifth seal.
CH A P. XX.
TOW in verse 12. John faw when he opened the sixth seal, He beheld, and
lo there was a great earthquake, and the sun became black as fackcloth of hair, and the moon became as blood.
I have opened the meaning of the earthquake, and of the sun being as black as fackcloth of hair, and the moon like blood: these things I have opened already in the Interpretation of the eleventh chapter of the Revelatinon, so that I shall say no more of it here.
And as for the latter part of this chapter, it is only a prophecy of the end of the world. Only this, I shall give you a word or two, to shew what is meant by the heavens being departed as a scroll when it is rolled together, as it is said in verse 14. and Ifaiab xxxiv. 4.
The meaning is this, that the clouds of heaven, and the air, and the influence of the stars of heaven, shall be rolled up as a scroll; for the clouds and air have spread themselves over the face of the sky, so they may be called the heavens ; for were it not for the clouds to scatter the rain on the earth, and the air to blow upon the creatures here on earth, all creatures would die. So that man and beasts, and all creatures do possess a heaven in themselves, even from the influence of the clouds and the air. So that the clouds and the air is that heaven that God will at the end of the world roll up like a scroll.
Also God will take away the fun, moon, and stars, so that they shall not penetrate their light and heat through the air and clouds of heaven, not to give any refreshment to the feed of the serpent, who shall be left here in this earth in utter darkness. For this earth shall be the place of hell for the reprobate seed to be in to eternity; so that they shall cry unto the mountains and rocks to fall upon them, to hide them from the wrath of the Lamb. That is they could with that the mountains and rocks would crush them to pieces, so that they might be hid as to have no being at all ; seeing the clouds and the air which overspread the heaven which did refreih our lives, which made our lives to live in heaven allo;
but now this is rolled up like a scroll, there is nothing but black darknefs, with out air or wind, which makes us burn like fire and brimstone, we having no refreshings from the heavens; so that it would be happy for us if the mountains and rocks would fall upon us, that we might be hid, or have no sensible being
And this well be the state of the reprobate feed at the end of the world: and this is the true meaning of the heaven being rolled up like a scroll, and not the fixed element; for the fixed element hath an earth standing upon it, which shall stand to eternity. Only this, the sun, moon and stars that gave light on this side the sky, shall be taken from the heaven, so that nothing but darkness shall remain for ever and ever.
But the element which we called heaven, shall stand to eternity ; but that heaven as must be rolled up like a scroll, it is the air and clouds of heaven, as aforesaid. So much concerning the interpretation of the chief things in chap. vi.
CH A P. XXI.
[N chap, vii. 1. it is said, And after these things I saw four angels standing on
the four corners of the earth, holding the four winds of the earth, that the wind jould not blow on the earth, nor on the sea, nor on any tree.
These four angels that John saw in the vision, which had power to hold the four winds, that the wind might not blow, they were four angels of
pure reason, who had a commission from God to hold the four winds, that they should not blow upon the earth, nor upon the sea, nor upon any tree ; for if God should but take away the four winds from blowing upon the earth, sea, and trees, all creatures would immediately perish and die. So that these four angels which John saw in the vision, who had such power over the four winds, it was only to signify what shall be at the end of the world. Then shall these four angels execute their office, so that the four winds shall not blow.
But there is something else to be done in the interim, for though the four angels have their commission from God to do that work, yet they must stay till fuch time as another work must be done; as you may see in verse 2. And John Saw another angel ascending from the east, having the seal of the living God, and be cryed with a loud voice to the four angels, to whom it was given to hurt the earth, and the sea,
Now this angel that ascended from the east, it was Christ himself, he having the seal of the living God: he must needs have the seal of the living God, he being the living God himself. He gave order to the other four angels, that they should not put their commission in execution until he had sealed the fervants of God in their foreheads. For it is Christ that lealed every servant of his in their foreheads in that they do receive the holy spirit of promise, whereby they are sealed up unto the day of redemption. And when the soul is sealed, and can witness in his spirit the assurance of his falvation, he may be said to be sealed in his forehead. And as for John's saying, this angel that had the seal of the living God, he
afcended from the east, it is spoken with relation of Christ's coming out of the east at his birth, to work the redemption for those that he now doth seal, with the seal of the living God. That is, with his own holy spirit, witnessing to their spirits the assurance of eternal life by his death; which they by faith do set to their feal, so that they by faith do seal to the truth of the thing, and he doth seal the assurance of everlasting life unto their consciences; and this is the seal of the living God in their foreheads.
And in verse 4. John heard the number of them which were sealed, and there were sealed an hundred and forty and four thousand, of all the tribes of the children of Ifrael.
Now it is not to be understood that John did mean exactly such a number and no more, that were sealed. But if the spirit of revelation will call a hundred hundred thousand, but a hundred and forty four thousand, who shall gainsay it? But in regard there is an equal number spoken of by John of every tribe, it is, according to reason's account, no more than one hundred and forty and four thousand, that were sealed of the twelve tribes of Israel. Therefore whether they were more or less sealed with the seal of the living God, I shall not dispute the thing; neither is it much material to know; so that I shall pass by the rehearsing of the tribes, and come to verse 9. where it is said, After this I bebeld, and lo a great multitude which no man could number, of all nations, and kindred, and people, and tongues, stood before the throne, and before the Lamb, cloathed in white robes, and palms in their hands.
This great multitude which no man could number, they were the Gentiles that were brought to the faith of the gospel in the time of the apostles commission, which did last a matter of three hundred years, then were all tongues, nations,
, kindred, and people brought to the faith of Jesus. And these were that great multitude which John saw in the vision, which no man could number. These were those that John saw stand before the throne, and before the - Lamb; these were those he saw cloathed in white robes.
Now what these white robes are I have shewed before; not but that there hath, and will be many thousands of the Gentiles, tongues, and nations since that time, that will be saved. But these that John saw in the vision, it was chiefly those faints in the apostles commission, and it was them that he saw, in verse 10.
cry with a loud voice, saying, Salvation to our God which fitteth upon the throne, and unto the Lamb. And in verse 11. All the angels stood round about the throne, and about the elders, and the four beasts, so that all the boly angels, and the elders, and the four beasts fell on their faces and worsbiped God.
So that the angels, and the elders, and the four beasts had faces, else they could not fall on their faces to worship God. For God hath a face of his own, and those that worship him must have faces also; else they cannot worship God; also they must have a tongue to say, Blessing, and glory, and wisdom, thanksgiving, and bonour, and power, and might, be unto our God for ever and ever, Amen. So that angels, elders, and those four beasts had tongues to praise the living God.
Now John being in great amaze in the vision to see such innumerable multitudes which no man could number, to stand before the throne of God, all in white robes,
he, in verle 14. asketh one of the elders what thele be that are arrayed in white robes? And he said unto John, These are they which came out of great tribulation, and have washed their robes, and made them white in the blood of the Lamb.
Now what is meant by the white robes, and being washed in the blood of the Lamb, I have shewed before, and what is meant by the throne; so that to the end of chap. vii. it is only to signify the glory of the redeemed ones, were and are washed in their souls here in this life in the blood of Christ. They shall serve him day and night in his temple in heaven, and stand before his throne of glory where he is. Neither shall there be any more hunger, nor thirst, neither shall the heat of persecution light any more upon them ; nor the natural sun to offend them any more by its extream heat ; for in this kingdom of heaven where the Lamb is, in the midst of the throne, he shall feed them, and shall lead them unto living fountains of water ; and God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes. This is that glorious and happy condition that all the saints shall have, who have got those white robes of the righteousness of faith, being washed in the blood of the Lamb. And this will be at the end of time, yet faith doth look upon this condition immediately after the end of this natural life. Therefore faid by John, as if the thing was already done and accomplished to him ; and to every one that is gone out of this world it is so, but to us that are alive, it is not yet accomplished. So much for the interpretation of chap. vii.
N chap. viii. 1. it is said, And when he had opened the seventh seal, there was filence in heaven about the space of half an hour. Now I would have the reader to understand, that these seven seals which were opened in heaven, they were those seven seals that were on the back side of the book of life, as I shewed before; which were the seven churches of Asia. Likewise it is Christ that doth open the seven seals; and at the opening of every
seal John saw some extraordinary sight in heaven, either destruction upon the wicked, and persecution upon the saints, or blessings upon the faints. So that the opening of every seal produced something new to John in his vision. But in the opening of the seventh seal, there was silence in heaven about the space of half an hour. That is, there was a little space of time between the opening of the other six seals, before this seventh seal was opened. So that John had some little space of time before the opening of the seventh seal was shewed unto him. And this is that he calls silence in heaven about the space of half an hour. It might be forty hours for ought we know; but if he faith half an hour, who shall gainsay it? But sure I am, it was a little space of time between the opening of the other six feals, before the seventh seal was opened unto his understanding, for he made no stop in opening the fix feals before. And as there was something did follow upon the opening of every one of the fix feals, so there doth follow fomething upon the opening of the seventh seal. For in verse 2. John saw the seven angels which stood before God, and to them were given seven trumpets. These feven angels which John faw in the vision, I declare they were the