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Now a leopard is a speckled or spoted creature. Now this beast is said to be like unto a leopard, in regard of the policy which he did exercise to gain the people to fight for him and his image; for he seemed to the people to be very religious and zealous in worship, but it was to images of wood and stone.
Yet this form of worship and command he gave to the people to worship the image, they were as white spots of righteousness. And his threatning of those that would not bow down to worship the image, these were his black spots; fo that he in this regard may be said to be like a leopard, that is, spotted black and white; black to the faints, but white to those that received the mark of the beaft in his right hand, or in his forehead; and in this regard he may be said to be like a leopard.
Secondly, He is said to have feet as it were the feet of a bear, that is, he acted as a bear doth with his feet. That is, to claw and break the bones of that in pieces which he hath power over ; for the strength and mischief of a bear it lieth most in his feet. So was it with the beast, he by his command to worship the image which he set up, did claw and break the bones of those saints that would not fall down and worship the image, by persecution, imprisonment, and death itself; and in this regard he may be said to have feet as it were the feet of a bear.
Thirdly, It is said, And his mouth was as the mouth of a lion ; the meaning is this, he acted with his mouth as the mouth of a lion doth. That is, as the mouth of a lion doth roar with such an exceeding great and terrible noise, that the beasts of the forrests exceedingly fear and tremble at the noise of the lion, that cometh out of his mouth ; fo likewise the roaring noise that came out of this beast's mouth made all the saints in Asia at that time to fear and tremble; for there was gone out of this beast's mouth great blasphemy, as in verse 5. And a command went out of his mouth that they should worship the dragon, who gave
bis power, seat, and authority unto this beast.
And in regard the dragon's power, feat, and authority was given and established upon this beast, there went a command out of this beast's mouth, that all people should worship the beast, as they did the dragon, as in verse 4.
of this chapter. So that the mouth of this beast may be said to be like the mouth of a lion; for these his commands to worship devils, and blasphemies against the living God, proceeded out of the beast's mouth, even as the floods of water did out of the dragon's mouth; and in this regard the beast may be said to have a mouth like the mouth of a lion.
Now it is to be observed, that this beast had one of his heads as it were wounded anto death. Now it is to be minded, that it was but as it were, nor was thought unto death, but his head was not quite dead ; if it had, he would have done no more mischief to the saints; but his deadly wound was healed, so that the world did the more wonder after him, saying, Who is like unto the beast? Who is able to make war with him?
Now I would have the feed of faith to mind who it was that did give this beast that deadly wound in his head, and yet was healed again. It was the faith and patience of the saints that did give him this deadly wound, in that they would
not worship the beast, nor his image, but did suffer persecution unto the death joyfully. So that this beast was sick with torment of soul, in that he could not bring them from the faith of Jesus, to worship devils, nor to submit to his will, so that he was wounded almost to death. So that he was weary of persecuting the saints, his conscience being so wounded he gave over persecuting for a season, until his conscience was healed again.
And though it be said, that he had a wound by a sword, and did live, it was no other sword but the sword of the spirit, which was in the saints; even the faith of Jesus, which enabled them to suffer with chearfulness the spoiling of their goods, and not loving their lives unto the death, rather than to worship the beast, or his image. And this was that deadly wound that the beast had in his head; and this was the first day, and one of the ten days tribulation the saints did undergo. For when men suffer meerly for their faith of Jesus, or in innocency of mind in matter of worship, they do by their sufferings wound the persecutors fouls more, than if they should turn again and fight with a sword of steel. So that it was the saints patient sufferings that did give this beast as John speaketh of, that deadly wound in his head.
But after a season his deadly wound was healed. That is, after the plague of his heart was over, that he saw he hould not die, he grew worse, much like Pharaoh, when Mofes had taken away the plague from him and his people, his heart was hardened, and made more cruel and worse. So was it with this beast, when his conscience had the fear of the present death taken off him, so that he was healed as to that; then he grew worse than he was before. For now his mouth uttered blasphemy, and power was given unto him, to continue forty two months, as in verse 5.
These forty two months have relation to the ten persecutions, which did last a matter of three hundred years. For the spirit and power of this beast, did run through the loins of all them seven heads; they all being partakers of the dragon's power, seat and authority. For it runs through the loins of all wicked beasts, or wicked head magistrates. For they have all the spirit of reason, even the spirit of the dragon, though not in such a measure as the dragon hath. So that the power of this beast should continue in himself, and in others forty two months; that was all the days of the ten persecutions, which time was the fame, as the two prophets did prophesy, which is said to be forty two months; which time was as long as the apostles commission did last, about three hundred years, as aforesaid, and as I have shewed in the Interpretation of the eleventh of the Revelation.
CH A P. XXXVI.
UT in verse 6. the beast that was healed of his deadly wound, he opened
his mouth in blasphemy against God, to blaspheme his name, and his tabernacle, and them that dwelt in beaven.
So that you may see now this beast was healed of his wound, he was worse, and blafphemed more against the living God, and against his tabernacle; which tabernacle was the body of Christ. And those that dwelt in heaven are the
faints, who worihiped by faith in tabernacle of God, which is in heaven, therefore said to dwell in heaven; and in verse 7. It is given him, that is the beast aforesaid, to make war with the saints, and to overcome them, and power was given him over all kindreds, and tongues, and nations.
Now the beast being recovered of that wound the saints did give him, he comes on afresh and makes war against them; not only in blaspheming against the living God, or living Jesus, whom the faints did worship and ferve, and would not worship, and serve him. Therefore he makes war with the faints, and overcomes them. That is, causeth all those he could light of, to deny their faith in Jesus, and worship as he would have them, or else thy must be put to death; so that he did overcome many of the saints, and put them to death; for power was given him over all kindreds, tongues, and nations. That is, he had power over all other people, but those that worshiped Jesus, to command them to worship him, and that worship he did set up, and all people but the saints did obey; fome for fear, and some for love, but all did obey to worship the beaft, only those that had faith in Jesus; therefore they were overcome and killed by the beast
. But the others, the kindreds, tongues, and nations, faved their lives, for the world wandered after the beast, his power was fo great. So that all that dwell upon the earth shall worship him, whose names are not written in the book of life of the Lamb, hain from the foundation of of the world, as in verse 8.
The meaning is this, that the spirit of reason in this beast, and in all other beasts, or head magistrates that are of the feed of the serpent, should have such power over the dark reason of man, to worship him, and the image he doth set up. And the whole world lying in ignorance and darkness, they are through ignorance ready and willing to worship any thing, that the fpirit of reason in the head migistrate shall command them.
And the ignorance and darknefs of men, in point of worship, is fo numerous, that hardly any can be seen in the world but idolaters. So that it
So that it may be said, that all that dwell on the earth do worship the beast, none excepted but those whose mames are written in the book of life, which are but few in comparison. For the worshipers of the true God are but few in comparison of those that worship the devil. For the spirit of reason is the devil, and what image or form of worship is set up by the spirit of reason in the head magistrate, having no commission from God, it is but of the devil's setting up. And whoever doth bow down to worship in that manner and form, they do but worship the beast and his image, and so worship devils.
And is not the whole world at this day, as well as at that time, as well those that profess themselves Christians, as well as Heathens, Turks, and Pagans under that darkness of mind, as to worship false gods, idols, and devils? So that the whole world may be said to worship the beast and his image, though not all one kind of image ; for every opinion of religion in the world hath one image or other to worship, instead of God. And it must needs be fo, because the world doth not know the true God in his form and nature, therefore they worship devils instead of God, though in divers forms and manner. But I would have the feed of faith to mind, that when I say all the world,
are excep though they be in the world; as Christ said, I pray not for the world, but for them thou hast given me out of the world, and that thou wouldest keep them from the evil of the world. So that the scriptures do never count the faints the world, though they be in the world; so that the scriptures may fay, that all the world wandered after the beast, for all the world doth wander after one false worship or other, but those that have their names written in the book of life.
Now how shall a man know that his name is written in the book of life, but in that he knoweth the true God, and how to worship the true God without any idolatry? Can he know things of this nature but by à commission from God? Surely no.
And here lieth the comfort that the feed of faith have in this life by a commiffion from God; by faith they know their names were written in the book of life, from the foundation of the world. That is, they are to look no father than the beginning of the world, that is, to the first Adam; they being of his feed are not counted by the revelation of faith, to be the world; it is the seed of the ferpent that is called by the spirit the world, and not the seed of Adam. So that the feed of faith are those that died in the first Adam, yet their names were written in his seed ; and Christ the second Adam, he being the quickening spirit of that seed.
And as the feed of faith was dead in the first Adam, so likewise the same seed is quickened again by the second Adam, and so made alive again, and may be said to be written in the book of life of the Lamb, Nain from the foundation of the world.
It is said from the foundation of the world, with relation to righteous Abel being Nain. So that whoever is of Adam's seed, is of Abel's feed; and whoever is of Abel's seed, he may be said to have his name written in the book of life of the Lamb, hain from the foundation of the world; for the feed of faith doth go no further to find his name written in the book of life, than to righteous Abel. For whoever goeth further to find his eternal life, he will come short of it, and never find it.
I give this hint to the feed of faith, only to let them see where the book of life is, and where they may find their names written, and not to go as rovers beyond the foundation of the world, but go to the first Adam as Moses speaketh of, and not as the imagination of the reason doth. For whoever goeth beyond Adam to find his name written in the book of life, he will never find it. So much for the interpretation of the eighth verse.
Shall pass by the two following verses, there being nothing in them but what
is commonly known; therefore in the next place I shall come to verse 11. where it is said, And I bebeld another beast coming up out of the earth, and he had two horns like a lamb, and he spake as a dragon.
This beast is said to come out of the earth, because his power and dominion was most upon dry land; therefore said to come up out of the earth, as the other
beait did arile out OI
lamne spirit of reaion in a high nature, as the other beast had, and as the dragon had, and walked in the fame steps, or worse, than the other beast did, and exercised the same authority or worse than the dragon did ; yet he had two horns like a lamb. That is, he did appear at his first coming into his feat, more lamb-like than the other beast whose deadly wound was healed, did. That is, he made a shew at his first appearance, as if he would have been more meek and merciful to the saints that worshiped Jesus, than the other beast was. So that the saints had some little hopes that he would have let them exercise their worship, buy and sell, and trade, without taking the mark of the beast in their foreheads, or in their hands. And it is very like they had some little space of time at his first coming in, to worship, buy and fell, and trade; for it is not to be understood, that the saints were always persecuted and put to death ; if they had, they would have been all extirpated out of the world before three hundred years were expired ; so that there was sometimes more liberty than at others, as there hath been in all ages. So that the two horns of his power did seem to be like a lamb, as if they would do but little hurt ; for no man doth so much fear the horns of a lamb, as they do the horns of a bull ; for the horns signify power.
Now these two horns like a lamb, they did signify quietnefs in religion, and peace in the civil state. So that this beast appearing with two horns like a lamb, it gave great hopes to the saints that they should have liberty of confcience to worship Jesus, and peace in the natural or temporal state, to buy and sell, and trade freely one with the other; as these two powers did fignify the spiritual power, and the temporal power, they being the two horns like a lamb.
But this beast be spake as a dragon. And in verse 12. He exerciseth all the power of the first beast before him, and causeth the earth, and them that dwell therein, to worship the first beast, whose deadly wound was healed.
Now what the power of the first beast was, I have shewed before. But in verse 13. And he doth great wonders, so that he maketh fire come down from heaven on the earth, in the sight of men. Now these wonders that were done by this beast who had two horns like a lamb, they were but counterfit wonders, and no real thing; for the imagination of man may do seemingly great things to the sight of the dark mind of man; there may be wonderful strange things produced by the imagination of reason, when the mind is'exercised upon a religious score, they may do seeming wonders and miracles, as they do by their imagination upon a natural account.
Did not the magicians and southsayers in Egypt, by their imagination do many feming miracles, as Moses did ? Did not they cause frogs seemingly to appear before Pharoah, as Moses did, and many other things as Moses did ? But this the reader may understand, that the frogs that Mofes brought upon Pharaoh, they were real substances alive ; but the magicians frogs which they brought up in the sight of Pharaoh, they were but shadows like frogs, without substance ; but the mind of Pharaoh and his people being ignorant and dark, took the shadow for substance. But if men's minds be not as dark as pitch, they may know that the Egyptians