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Am very fenfible the greatest part of what is I offered in the following Elay, may be found in ESPESESCS Treatises already Publised, and accordingly I bave mentioned the Authors: and yet possibly the Reader may find some things suggested, here and there, which he bas not met with before. However it does not fall to every ones share to have the Books cited ; and some of them are rarely to be seen in New-England: besides, the Collating many things thus tegetber, will save both time and pains to such as have Libraries, and want Leisure to search them.
If any pould inquire what occafion there is at this time of the Day for an Oration against Popery ; is the Protestant Interest in any bazard from that Quarter ? I answer, the Church Militant will never be out of danger, and therefore fhe has Watchmen set upon her Walls ; * And tho' our LORD JESUS CHRIST will certainly make good bis great Promise; That the Gates of Hell joall never be able to prevail against His Church, ( Mat. xvi. 18. & Dan. ii. 44. ) Yet I know of no other Charter that any of the Protestant Churches in particular have for
their Security, than what runs with a quam diu fe tene gelferint,or in the words of the Prophet Azariah, 2 Chron. xv. 2. Hear ye me Ala, and all Judah, and Benjamin, The LORD is with you (or will be with you, for it may be transated in the future Tense) while you be with Him. Besides which, the unsearchable Sovereignty of GOD in His Dispensations of this Nature, is always to be remembred Quo adored. What became of the seven famous Churches in Asia, those Golden Candlesticks among whom the Son of GOD once walked? Where are the flourishing and numerous Christian Churches that were sometime fince in Bohemia, Hungaria & Piedmont? But Oh! thou Enemy! whatDesolations haft thou wrought in our Days in France ? The time was *, when the Reformed could there count two thousand one hundred & fifty Churches; in most of these two Ministers, in some five ; the Church of Orleans had feven thoufand Communicants : But their Bodies now lye dead in the Street of the great City, &c. Rev. xi. 7, 8. In the Year 1686. not a single Church left, or a reformed Minister to be seen in all that Kingdom. As to Great Britain : He must be a Stranger to the British History that does not know how frequently our Holy Religion, together with the Civil Liberties of the Nation, bas been in the utmost danger from the Days of Queen Elisabeth ; fumetimes by secret Attempts, at other times by open Violence, thra' the Influence of the Jesuits, with their Affociates, and other Emiffarys of the Church of Rome. And thoʻour British Mountain,by the Divine Favour feemas
at present to stand frong, by the Settlement of the Imperial Crown of Great Britain in the Primcefs Sophia, and the Heirs of Her Body being Protestants; Yet where is the Seer, that dare say.to our Jerusalem, ber Warfare is Accomplished ? Who among us can tell how long these Halcyon-days will last ? Or, whether the Clouds may not return after the Rain. A great & learned Divine * speaking of the Romish Church has these words, “ The common 66. Enemy is still in Being, and hath great power in the « World, and we know not what advantages our too.com « mon Iniquities may from the Justice of a righteous GOD “ give him against us, so that we bave no reason to be “ Secure". And tho' the Man of Sin, from the Days of the blesed Reformation especially, has been consuming by the Breath of CHRIST's Mouth, yet he will not be destroyed till the Brightness of His coming. . . And’tis the Opinion of many Judicious Divines,That immediately before the final Ruine of Antichrist there will be such a time (tho' a short one ) for Distress of Nations, and of Tribulation to the Church of GOD, as the Ages past never saw.
How near these great & last Changes of the Cburch and World are, with the exact time you order wherein they are to be. Accomplished, are Matters too high for our Prophetical Chronologers : Whatever tbey may pretend to, the
Arrows are beyond them: there is no fixing the certain Time for the Events of any Prophefy before the · Accomplishment: ( at the End it hall Speak, Habak. ii. 3.)
* Mr. Howe in his Sermon on the sth. Nov. 1703:
And because we know not when these things, or the coming of the Son of Man skall be, therefore the Churches, and all private Christians are folemnly charged ( and it is at their utmost Perih, if they negle&t it) to Watch & Pray, Mark xiii.13. & ult.to be Sober & Vigilant, i Pet.v.8. Diligent, that they may be found of Him in Peace, without Spot & Blameless, 2 Pet.iii. 14. And not led away with the Error of the wicked. And to mention no more, it is Observable, that the Church of Philadelphia, who had a gracious Promise of being kept from (or in) the hour of Temptation that should come upon all the World, to try them that dwell on the Earth is yet awfully Admonished in those words, Behold I come quickly, hold fast that which thou hast, that no Man (or no one, undtis ) take thy Crown, Rev. iii. 6, 10, 11.
I bave done with the Preface when I have said, that the Reader must not expect here to find any thing like a general Charge against the Romish Church, (such a work wou'd fill Volumns, and has actually so done : ) The Design of the Esay being only to open two Articles of her Indictment; and yet Ex Pede Herculem from a Foot by the rule of proportion we may make an Estimate of the Man of Sin.
An ESS A Y to Explain that Passage in the Revelations, Chap. XVIII.v.13.
and Slaves and Souls of Men; with an Application thereof to the Church of Rome.
T being a Matter of such mighty Consequence to the People of GOD in the
several Ages of the Church plainly to disI
cover Anti-chrift, that so “they might
not touch the unclean thing", but be
separate ; 'Tis not to be wonderd at, that the Holy Ghost in giving the Character of Mystical Babylon, the Mother of Harlots,&c. should descend to such Particulars as we meet with in this, and the preceding Chapter. For here we find the Apoftate Church described from her Posture, Sitting, V. 3. I saw a Woman Sit, &c. thus old Babylon Sat as a Queen : Her Garb & Attire, v. 4. The was arrayed with Purple, and deckt with Gold, and precious Stones, &c. Notice is also taken of her Complexion, and Condition ; She was Scarlet Coloured,and drunk with B