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Dissertation 3.


Daniel 7:8

The Expositor who sympathizes most with our Lecturer among writers of our own day, is the late Professor Lee, of Cambridge. In his translations of the Hebrew Scriptures he is unrivaled; no scholar of our age can approach him in the extent of his learning or the soundness of his erudition. His expository system of the prophecies of Daniel and St. John will meet in these days with the most vehement condemnation, and it happily does not fall within the province of the Editor of these Lectures to express any other opinion, than that they throw light upon the views of our Reformer. It will be sufficient at present to refer the reader to his valuable work, entitled “An Inquiry into the Nature, Progress, and End of Prophecy,” Cambridge, 1849. He discusses the subject of our second volume from page 152, to page 230, and translates the Hebrew and Chaldee text of Daniel, adding valuable explanatory notes. Before the student is competent to pass an opinion on the Professor’s hermeneutical conclusions, he should be intimately familiar with his elaborate verbal criticisms.

The fourth kingdom he holds to be the Roman, and specifies, especially, “the Lower Roman Empire;” the ten horns are “a series of kings, each serves constituting a universal empire for the time being” The Little Horn is said to be “the latter rule of the Roman power,” (p. 165.) All reference to Antiochus Epiphanes is denied; and the argument is concluded by the following sentence, — “By every consideration, therefore, it is evident that the Little Horn of Daniel’s seventh and eighth chapters is identically the same, and that this symbolized that system of Roman rule which ruined Jerusalem, and then made war upon the sainted servants and followers of the Son of man; and in this he prospered and practiced, until he in his turn fell, as did his predecessors, to rise no more at all,” (p. 168.)

This vision has been ably and fully illustrated by Professor Bush of New York, in “the Hierophant,” 1844; and as the American Professor’s “exposition” is exceedingly clear, and full, and instructive, a few quotations from it are inserted here. “We propose, if possible, to ascertain the true character of the judgment here depicted, and by a careful collation of other Scriptures to determine its relations to the series of events connected with the second coming of Christ and its grand cognate futurities.” “This Little Horn,” he asserts, “is unquestionably the ecclesiastical power of the Papacy,” and “the judgment commences a considerable time prior to the transition of the beast from his pagan to his Christian state.”... “This horn did not arise till after the empire received its deadly wound by the hands of the Goths.” This divergence from the sentiments of our Reformer compels us to avoid quoting at greater length Professor Bush’s scheme of interpretation. It is ably planned and carefully executed. He supposes the Little Horn to prevail against the saints for 1260 years; adding, “nothing is more notorious than that the Roman Empire, after subsisting not far from the space of 1260 years from its foundation, did succumb to the sword of its Gothic invader, and about A.D. 476 became imperially extinct, under its then existing head.” This forms another period for the supposed termination of the 1260 years, very different from that usually maintained by British authors. It is said to be renewed again in the time of Charlemagne, and the testimony of Sigonius, Hist. de Reg. Ital., Book 4, page 1.58, is quoted in proof of this. See Hierophant, page 156.

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