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Lecture FORTY-First.

Daniel here mentions one among the many crimes of Antiochus, his casting down truth to the ground. This clause ought to be joined with the former; for Antiochus could not deprive God of his lawful worship without abolishing sound doctrine. The angel seems here to express the reason for the destruction of the sanctuary, because the worship of God depended upon the teaching of the law, which is here understood by the word “truth.” This passage then states that no religion is pleasing to God unless founded on truth; for God, according to the uniform teaching of the Scriptures, does not desire to be worshipped according to man’s caprice, but rather tries the obedience of men by prescribing what he demands and approves, lest men should pass over these bounds. We must here remark the union which Daniel now establishes between the overthrow and abolition of the worship of God, and the casting down of truth to the ground, when it neither obtains its proper rank, nor subdues all mortals to itself.

It may be read, he will east down truth in the earth; thus making a distinction between heaven and earth. And if we like to read it so, the sense will be — truth still remains stable although it perishes in the earth, because it has its station in heaven. Thus the sense would be — after the abolition of the worship of God, and the cessation of the sacrifices, piety could no longer exist among mortals. At length he adds, he shall succeed and prosper The first word here implies execution. God wished on the whole to admonish his Church concerning the prosperous success of Antiochus, lest the faithful should be dispirited at beholding the impious tyranny so petulantly and wantonly polluting God’s temple, and utterly destroying his religion, as if he had provoked God himself to the contest. For this conduct was equivalent to a direct declaration of war against God. For his success would trouble all the pious, as if the tyrant was superior to God himself. Hence this prediction would warn the faithful against the novelty or suddenness of anything which might occur. It follows, —

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