may be a struggle between France and Italy to decide the point. The unclean daemon-spirit about ere long to issue from the Mouth of the False Prophet will enlighten us still further in relation to it. Were the Italians to get the city, they could not retain it long; for apart from the reason, that no ninth form can be constitutionally recognized, is the fact that there is one standing at the door, whose mission it is to destroy the city that it may "be found no more at all" (Rev 18:21). This will effectually settle all controversy about Rome, and put a quietus upon the Roman Question forevermore.
Such is the manifestation of the third phase of the Frog-Sign as far as it has been displayed to this February, 1868. In a short time the last of the 1260 and 1335 years will have expired; at all events, these numbers of years will have elapsed since the issue of Justinian, the Dragonemperor's, Decretal Epistle to the Bishop of Rome, a.d. 533, constituting him the Chief Seer, or Prophet, or Spiritual Head of the Ecclesiastical Body of the Roman world: and since the confirmation of this appointment by Phocas, a.d. 607, respectively. As we have seen, the three phases of the Frog-Sign have had three successive beginnings, each signalized by a war; the first began in 1853, resulting in the Crimean war; the second, in 1859, in the Italian war; and the third, in 1867, in the invasion of the Roman States. But the Frog-Sign is not yet complete. The prophecy seems to require "a simultaneous going forth" of all the three daemon-spirits to the kings of the earth and of the whole habitable: to convene them contemporaneously to encounter some great and urgent danger, that threatens, if not overcome, to subvert and destroy all their "legitimate interests". Among the influences brought into exceedingly prominent activity will doubtless be the Franco-Papal, or the unclean froglike daemon-spirit that issues from the Mouth of the False Prophet. When the crisis is formed, the Prophet of the Great City will be in high feather, exerting himself in the presence of the Beast, with all the spiritual influence he possesses over the millions of Antichristendom, to induce them to join in the crusade preached, as the grand rally of "the earth and the whole habitable" against the great and pressing terror of the situation.
The "kings of the earth" are the rulers of middle, eastern, and northern Europe; and those of "the whole habitable", western and southern Europe, with other outlying regions, whose powers are Apocalyptically symbolized. But, what is the Great Terror that throws the Dragon, the Beast, and the False Prophet, into such tumultuous alarm, that their several governments should seek to excite the whole world simultaneously to war? The answer to this important question will form the subject of the third part of the prophecy of this Sixth Vial.
1. The Thieflike Advent
"Behold, I come as a thief" -- Verse 15.
The position of this announcement of the thieflike advent in the prophecy, is remarkable. It stands between the going forth of the Froglike Spirits, and the gathering of the kings into Armageddon. This indicates, that the Advent takes place before the gathering into that place or country.
But, who is it that comes as a thief? This must be answered Apocalyptically. This prophecy is introduced by directing the reader's attention to ch. 1:4, 8, to him, "who is, and who was, and who is coming". In this latter text, this august personage styles himself, ho pantokrator, the Almighty One: and in verse 13, "one like to a Son of Man," "he that liveth, and was dead, and is living for the aions of the aions" (verse 18). The Son-of-Man similitude, whose "voice is as the sound of many waters," or "the voice of a multitude," the One Body of which the anointed Jesus is the Head, is the Omega and the End, "who is to come".
The Coming One, who makes his entrance stealthily, is not merely a single individual; but a body of individuals, consisting of the kings of the earth and their Prince (ch. 1:5) to prepare whose way, the Great River Euphrates has been dried up. It is the body of Earth's future kings, who will all be conformed to the Christ Image (Rom. 8:29; 1 John 3:2). They constitute the Mighty Angel, heaven-descended, who had been clothed with cloud (ch. 10:1); and from whose glory the earth is illuminated (ch. 18:1). This angel-body of kings is constituently exhibited ch. 19:11-16. In this place, it is shown to be constituted of the hosts in the heaven accompanying their Commander in war. He and they together illustrate the name, "King of kings and Lord of lords" -- the Seven Spirits of the Deity manifested in the Saints.
Such is "the Man who is the Angel" (ch. 21:17) who comes as a thief -- the Man whose measure is 144 cubits. But, to whom is he to come as a thief? Certainly not to the constituents of his own body, which would be coming to himself. No; he comes upon the Dragon, the Beast, and the False Prophet, as a thief. He breaks in unexpectedly into the Great City by way of the dried up channel of the great Ottoman Euphrates. He plants himself in the limits of the Turkish territory, where he makes all necessary preparations for "the war of the great day of the Deity who is almighty". The exhausted condition of the Ottoman Power is favorable to this preparation of the way. It was dried up for this very purpose, namely, that after the drying up was sufficiently advanced, the way might be prepared to carry into effect what is to follow. This glorious and terrible man can make no progress until he is prepared. When he is created and perfected, he is the way prepared. "I am" said Jesus, "the way;" and this man with a mission, and therefore, man and angel, must be conformed to him as the model. But, if he be a man not yet created, who was that, who eighteen hundred years ago said in the text, "Behold, I come as a thief"? Who is indicated by the personal pronoun "I"? The answer to this is the Eternal Spirit, figuratively represented in ch. 5:6, by "a Lamb as it had been slain, having Seven Horns and Seven Eyes" -- the Eternal Spirit, manifested in the glorified Jesus, who is to the One Body as the acorn to the oak. The Alpha, the First, the Beginning, is the Deity manifested in flesh justified by spirit, and called Jesus Christ; the Omega, the End, and the Last, is also the Deity manifested in flesh, justified by spirit, and styled, in Eph. 4:13, "the Perfect Man, the measure of the stature of the fulness of the Christ".
This Perfect man comes into Babylon the Great as a thief. A thief gets into the house as quietly and noiselessly as possible; and chooses a time when he supposes all the inmates are fast asleep, and consequently off their guard. Having opened a door, or effected an entrance of some sort, he prepares to carry off the spoil. All his preparations for this are done with great caution and carefulness, so as not to awake the sleepers; from whom, the little light he employs is averted, lest its stimulus should disturb their slumbers. This is as a thief comes, and exactly illustrates the coming of the "One like to a Son of Man". He does not come into Babylon like a descending balloon from the clouds, with all eyes fixed upon him, and wondering where he is going to alight! A thief does not come after this fashion.
Thus, "the day of the Lord so cometh as a thief in the night: for when they shall say, Peace and safety; then sudden destruction cometh upon them -- and they shall not escape. But ye, brethren," continues Paul in 1 Thess. 5:3, 4, "are not in darkness, that that day should overtake you as a thief". We see from this, the class upon whom the coming is as a thief -- it is upon them who are in darkness. While the Perfect Man is being developed, the Dragon, the Beast, and the Roman Prophet, will be saying, "Peace and safety;" and the last especially, as the organ of Catholicity, in heart saying, "I sit queen and no widow, and shall see no sorrow". These are all in the dark, doting upon speculations none of which will be realized, but only the reverse.
But, when, where, and how, is the Perfect Man apocalypsed, or revealed? As to the when, the answer is, in the interval between the arrival of the Lord Jesus, and the coming in upon the Dragon, the Beast, and the False Prophet as a thief, after the type of Cyrus and his companion kings. In this interval, the real Sons of the Deity are manifested, and separated from mere pretenders to Sonship. It is the interval termed in ch. 11:18, "the time of the dead that they should be judged"; and, in ch. 20:12, 13, also referred to in the words, "I saw the dead, small and great, who had stood, hestotas, before the Deity; and the books had been opened; and another book had been opened, which is that of the life: and the dead had been judged by the things which had been written in the books, according to their works" -- hekastos, "every one:" parallel with which likewise is ch. 22:12, in which it is written, "Behold, I come quickly: and my reward is with me to give back (apothounai) to every one as his work shall be" -- as his work shall on inspection be found to be. It is in this time, styled by Peter, in 1 Peter 2:12, "the Day of Inspection," hemera episkopes, that the Rainbowed Angel, or Perfect Man, is to be made manifest, and developed into being. "The apocalypse of the Sons of Deity" (Rom. 8:19), which is "the adoption" or "redemption of our body" (v. 23), cannot occur in the absence of our Lord Jesus Christ, because he is "the resurrection and the life"; and till he revisits the earth, there can be neither.
He is no longer simply the earthborn body that was crucified and buried. After he came forth from the tomb, which of itself under the law was defiling to the party buried, and to any living person who should touch him, Jesus was also upon the third day "justified by spirit," or "made perfect," in ascending by the power of the Spirit from the earthborn nature, to consubstantiality of substance with the Father, "who is spirit" (John 4:24). Thus freed from all earthiness, he became spirit, upon the principle he had laid down in his discourse to Nicodemus, that "that which has been born out of the Spirit is spirit" (John 3:6). Hence, the perfected Jesus is the Spirit-Nucleus of the Perfect Man to be revealed, or apocalypsed. The Lord Jesus comes not as a thief to them that are watching. He is "the Lord the Spirit" for whom they are waiting and earnestly looking; knowing that he comes when the 1335 years are expired, "in the Time of the End", and before the gathering of the hosts of the nations in the field of Armageddon.
Such is in brief the answer to the inquiry when is the mighty angelman to be apocalypsed, or developed into visible existence? The next question is where is his development to ensue? And here I may refer the reader to what I have already written in Vol. 3 pp. 178-187. It would not be right to reproduce these eight pages in this place. It will be enough to refer to them, and to remark that the development of the Rainbowed Angel is the same thing as the development of the Perfect Man, whose constituents are "the kings from a Sun's risings". I would, however, remind the reader, that Habakkuk informs us, that "Eloah shall come in from Teman, and the Holy One from Mount Paran; and that while he is in Teman, he will also be in Sinai, in the holy" (Psa. 68:17). "Yahweh, says Moses, "came in from Sinai, and rose up from Seir unto them; he caused to shine forth from Mount Paran, and he came with ten thousands of the holy". These localities are in the north-western corner of Arabia, and south of the Palestinian pachalik of the Little Horn of the Goat's Euphratean empire. Further to the northwest is Egypt, also a province of the Great River Euphrates. In this wilderness region of the South, bounded by the Suez Canal, the Mediterranean, and the Red Sea from the Gulf of Suez to the Gulf of Akaba, the Arabian Desert, and Palestine; situate and being in the land promised to Abraham and his Seed -- it appears to me, from the testimony already in the hands of the reader, the King of the Jews will first manifest his presence, not to the world at large; which will not know of his being there, or, if told the fact, would not believe it; but to those, whom "the blood of the covenant" brings before his tribunal. This southern region of which as King of the Jews he is king, therefore, "King of the South," is the locality of that tribunal, or judgment seat (bema, not thronos), before which we must all stand that we may be made manifest. The locality of the Throne (thronos) is Jerusalem, about 280 miles in a straight line from Sinai. Mount Zion is the place of "the Great White Throne" (ch. 20:11; 4:2). This is not ascended until the victorious King of the Jews and his Perfect Man of 144 cubits, or thousands, have wrested the city out of the hands of the Little Horn of the Goat (Dan. 8:9, 11, 23, 25. We have not now to do with this; but with the bema, or Supreme Court, the judicial bench, styled in Rom. 14:10, and 2 Cor. 5:10, "the Judgment Seat of Christ". All who have made a covenant with Yahweh by sacrifice, and in any way related to "the Covenants of Promise," will be gathered (Psa. 50:5) and stand before this; but it will only be the chosen few, "the called, and chosen, and faithful," who will be admitted to share in the honor, dignities, and glory of the name of Yahweh in Jerusalem enthroned (Jer. 3:17). Let the reader note well this distinction between the Throne and the Judgment Seat, their different localities, and