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power hath belieged or let guard upon the waters, and to the waters becometh as bitter as gall or wormwood to those that shall drink of those rivers or fountains of water which are besieged. They become as bitter as gall or wormwood, and many men died of the waters, in that they were bitter. They were bitter indeed, in that many men lost their lives, in attempting to drink of them. That is, they were Nain by the king of Affyria's hoft, who was that star, whose name is called by John's Revelation, wormwood. And the rivers and fountains of waters which he besieged, or any other power, is called bitter wormwood or gall, and who ever was seen to drink of these waters fo besieged, they were Nain. Therefore said to die of the waters, because they were bitter, as aforesaid. So much for the founding of the three angles.
Now I would have the reader to understand, that there are other kings that besieged the waters and fountains of Samaria, and Judah, Moab, and Egypt, and divers other kingdoms, so that their waters became wormwood and bitter. So that many men died of the waters, they being made bitter, in that they were besieged by the enemy. So that what king or power soever did act after the fame nature and manner as the star did, aforesaid, it may all be called but one star, which name of the star is called wormwood, which made the waters bitter, as aforesaid ; fo that many men died of the waters, and this was at the founding of the third Angel. So that what things have been acted of that nature by any other kings besides the king of Affyria, between the founding of the third angel and the fourth angel, they are all included under one star.
For at the founding of every angel, there is some differing judgment did Follow upon it. So that these three angles that founded, they were fulfilled in the time of the law. But at the founding of the fourth angel, the law and the gospel are joined together. That is, the end of the law and the beginning of the gospel, were now tyed close together as one thing, by the founding of the fourth angel. Only this I would have the reader to understand, that the same judgments were acted upon the earth in the other angels sounding, in the time of the gospel, as there was in the time of the law, only they differ something in every angel's sounding. And as the law is involved in the gospel
, so hath John involved those three angels that founded in the time of the law, into the ministry of the seven churches of Asia; which are called by the Revelation of John, in the vision, seven angels; therefore I shall proceed to open unto you that can ainderstand, when the fourth angel did found.
CH A P. XXV.
ERSE 12. And the fourth angel founded, and the third part of the sun
was smitten, and the third part of the moon, and the third part of the stars, so as the third part of them was darkned, and the day shone not for a third part of it, and the night likewise.
The meaning I declare is this, it is spoken with relation to Christ, and John the Baptist, and the rulers of the Jews. The third part of the sun being smitten, it was with relation to Christ's fufferings, he being the fun of righteousness, and
and the head of the gospel; that heavenly light that shined from him, it was as the light of the fun to all thofe that believed him. But he being smitten with persecution and suffering while he lived, it may be said that the third part of the sun was darkened. So that the sun could not shine so bright as it would have done ; for never any man spake like him, neither had ever any man that wisdom and power as he had ; therefore it is said in scripture, Never any man spake like this man. Neither did any man speak forth that wisdom as he did; for he is said to be the wisdom of God. He must needs be the wisdom of God, he being God himself, as I have shewed before.
Yet for all this he was smitten with sufferings, so that his wisdom and righteousness could not shine forth fo bright and clear, as it would have done, only a third part of it did shine. That is, truth took place in the hearts of some few that did believe him; so that the light of heaven did not shine into the hearts of the generality of the people of the Jews, because they saw such sufferings did attend the believing in him.
Therefore it is laid, many believed on him, but durft not confess him, because of the sufferings they saw would follow.
So that this Jesus which fignifies the sun, was smitten with persecution and sufferings in the time of his ministry, that there could but a third part of his heavenly light shine upon the people of the Jews; and happy were those that this light did shine upon. But the generality of the people did smite this fun with persecution, so that they could see no heavenly light in him at all, so that the sun did not shine upon them at all
. So that he became as darkness unto them, not yielding them any true spiritual and heavenly peace in their souls; so that the light of this sun shined not at all upon their hearts, but was darkness unto them.
For this was he that did make their hearts fat, so that they might not see any saving light in him ; for they were to smite the fun with envy and malice, so that he might not shine upon their souls any of that heavenly light which was in him. Therefore he spake in parables and dark sentences, that they might not understand; but unto his disciples it was given them to understand the mysteries of the kingdom. So that a third part of the sun of righteousness did shine upon their souls; but the rest, or other part of the sun, it did never shine upon the presecutors who had smitten him, nor the generality of the people, but was as darkness upon their minds. And this is the spiritual meaning of the sun being smitten at the founding of the fourth angel.
The moon also was smitten, so that a third part of her did shine.
Now I would have the feed of faith to understand what is meant by the moon. This moon I declare it doth signify the law of Moses, as the gospel doth the Son of God, which was Jesus. And as the gospel of Jesus was, or Jesus himself was the sun that was smitten, as aforesaid ; so likewise John the Baptist did signify the moon, because he was the last prophet of the law, as I have shewed in the Interpretation of the eleventh chapter of the Revelation. And he being smitten and put in prison, and afterwards put to death, the third part of the moon may be said to be smitten,
the light or righteousness of the law, a third part of it was darkened when John the Baptist was smitten, he fignifying the moon, as he was the last prophet of the law. Also the rulers of the Jews were the third part of the stars that were darkened also, for they were smitten also at the founding of the fourth angel ; that is, they were smitten with fear, trouble, and wrath in their minds, that righteousness could not be had by the law; so that the light, joy, and peace that they received before by the righteousness of the law, it is now smitten and darkened. For by the preaching of John the Baptist, who tells them of another righteousness than that of the law, even the righteousness of faith in the Son of God. So that he bids them bring forth fruits of repentance, that is, a better fruit than that of the law; that is, a better righteousness than the righteousness of the law. Therefore he tells them that he which did follow after him, meaning Christ, whose shoe latchets he was not worthy to unloose, that they should look and mind him, he would tell them of a righteousness of faith, which was a better righteousness than that of the law, which would yield them more peace and satisfaction to their minds, than the righteousness of the law would; for the righteousness of the law, though performed very exactly, it will be but as the light of the moon in mens minds. But the righteousness of faith, which the gospel signifies, it shines in the mind of man as the sun at noon day. So that the worshipers in the law were the third part of the stars that were smitten, at the fourth angel's founding; and this fourth angel founded until the destruction of Jerusalem. For as the sun was smitten, as aforesaid, fo likewise the moon and stars were smitten also.
The moon was smitten first in John the Baptist, he being the last prophet of the law, as aforesaid; he smote the hearts of the rulers of the Jews with the declaration of a Christ that would bring another righteousness and worship, than that of the law, which would yield them more peace, if they could believe; so that they became so smitten in their minds, that they fell a perfecuting and smote him, and smote the fun also. But in a while after the moon and stars were smitten themselves. That is, at the destruction of Jerusalem by the Romans, the moon and stars were smitten. That is, the worship of the law of Moses which signifies the moon, it was smitten. And the rulers of the Jews, which were the stars, were smitten by the Romans. So that a third part of the moon hath been darkened ever since, and a third part of the stars have been darkened ever since. For the worship of the law, which signifies the moon, was never set up since not in his brightness, neither hath the stars, that is, the rulers of the Jews, any power to set up that worship of the law, or to punish any that do not submit unto it. So that the third part of the stars are so smitten, that they are become darkened. So that you that have faith may know, that the gospel which did signify the sun, was smitten and darkened when Jesus was smitten at his first coming, to the day of his death ; therefore called by the Revelation of John, the third part of the sun was smitten and darkened, and shined not for a third part of the day.
Likewise the law, that signifies the moon, it was smitten and darkened, first in John the Baptist, and so were the stars also. But afterwards at the destruction
of Jerusalem, the moon and stars were both smitten and darkened; fo that a third
part of the moon and stars did give no light in the night; because the light of the natural moon and stars, it is their proper place when they shine, to give light in the night. But I have spoken more of the moon in the Interpretation of the eleventh of the Revelation, therefore I shall speak no more of it here. Only this, to remind the seed of faith what great judgments did ensue upon the sounding of this fourth angel; persecution of the gospel, persecution of the law, and destruction of the Jews, which were the stars. These things were at the founding of the fourth angel. You whose understandings are inlightened, may fee what hath followed upon the sounding of the trumpet of these four angels; and how this fourth angel it sounded half upon the law of Moses, and half upon the gospel of Jesus.
So that now there are three angels more to found, and great woes will follow upon it; as it is said in the last verse of this chapter, Woe, woe, woe to the inhabitants of the earth, by reason of the other voices of the trumpets of the three angels that are yet to found. So that there will follow a great woe upon the founding of these three angels, which I shall unfold in order as they follow in the next chapter. So I shall fay no more of this, I having given the interpretation in short of all the chief things of concernment in the eighth chapter.
CHA P. XXVI.
HAP. ix. At the sounding of the fifth angel, in verse 1. Foun saw a star
Now this star that fell from heaven unto the earth, it was that beast or king that did arise out of the fea, which is spoken of Revelation xiii. 1. This beast was one of Herod's, the dragon's sons, and the next beast that did arife after him; and this beast he was like a leopard, and he had seven heads and ten horns, and the dragon gave him his power and authority, and this beast had crowns upon his ten horns; and upon his heads the name of blasphemy. So that he was furnished with the dragon's power and authority, and his blasphemy, to despise the living God, and to persecute the faints, as his father the dragon did when he persecuted Christ at his birth, and made war with the remnant of his feed. So that this beast which arose out of the sea, he may be said to be a star that fell from heaven unto the earth, because he was one of the dragon's fons; for John faith, be saw a wonder in heaven, a great red dragon that persecuted the woman; which red dargon was no other but Herod. And this star which fell from heaven unto the earth, it was Herod's first born fon, therefore called a ftar that fell from heaven unto the earth. It is said to fall from heaven, because this star was of the same seed or nature as the dragon was of. For it is said by John, that he saw a wonder in heaven, a great red dragon ; this red dragon is said to be in heaven, because he had the spirit or seed of the fallen angel in him in a great and extraordinary measure, which angel was first in heaven, he being created an angel of light, but was thrown down unto this earth when he deceived Eve. Neither did H 2
that angel that deceived her, ever ascend up into heaven again to this day, nor never shall. But Herod and his sons, and all wicked kings and rulers, they being of the fallen angel's feed, they may be said to fall from heaven; and they being of his feed, they may be called a dragon, and fatan, a ferpent, a devil, and stars ; though they act several ways, yet all from one root; that is, from one seed, even from the spirit or seed of the fallen angel, as aforesaid.
Therefore if any head magistrate or man doth act after the manner of a dragon, he may be said to be a dragon, as Herod. And if any man act after the manner of a subtle serpent, as those Jews did that tempted Christ, they may be called ferpents. And if man act the part of a devil, as Judas did, he may be called a devil. And if any king doth act as a star that burneth like a lamp, or more worse, this star did, that fell at the founding of the fifth angel, they may be called stars that fall from heaven unto the earth. Because, as I said before, the original or father of all wickedness even the fallen angel, he was thrown down from heaven unto this earth. And the dragon, serpent, devil, and stars, they being of his feed, they may be said by the Revelation of John, to fall from heaven unto this earth; for when the angel was thrown down from heaven unto this earth, his feed was all thrown down unto this earth with him. And this earth hath, and is the devil's kingdom ever since, and will be to the end of the world, And in this sense it may be said that this star fell from heaven unto the earth, and to him, that is unto this star, was given the key of the bottomless pit.
And in verse 2. it is said, And be opened the bottomless pit, and there arose a fmoke out of the pit as the smoke of a great furnace, and the sun, and the air were darkened by reason of the smoke of the pit.
This bottomless,pit here spoken of, it is the imagination of reason in man; for the imagination of man's heart is continually evil, or bottomless, or topless. That is, the imagination of reason cannot find out what God is, nor where he is; nor what the devil is, nor where he is, notwithstanding he is the devil himself. That is, the spirit of reason, which is the soul of man, is the devil; and the imaginations that proceed from it, is that bottomless pit the scriptures speaketh of. It is bottomless, because it is eternal; for that which is eternal hath no end, therefore no bottom, so called by the spirit a bottomless pit; and he that had the key of the bottomless pit, was the star aforesaid. The meaning is this, he may be said to open the bottomless pit, in that he had power given himn to command the dark reason and imaginations of the idolatrous peoples hearts, to come forth to fight for his crown and dignity, and for the image and worship which he did set up. Now he had power given him of the angel of the bottomless pit, that is, from the fallen angel aforesaid; he being the angel of the bottomless pit, as it is faid in verse 11. of this chapter, And they had a king over them, which is the angel of the bottomless pit, whose name is Abaddon, &c.
No I would have the reader to understand, that from this king, the angel of the bottomless pit, did Herod, the dragon, receive his power; he being that beast that did ascend our of the bottomless pit, which is spoken of in chapter xi. of the Revelation, which I have opened already. And this dragon gave his power to this star, so that the angel of the bottomless pit did give power to his own seed,