Ellen G. White Writings

<< Back Forward >>

«Back «Hit «Prev. Pub. «Pg   Pg» Next Pub.» Hit» Forward»

The Seven Heads of Revelation 12, 13, and 17, Page 26

only the papacy, as for instance, the leopard beast of chapter 13. Then the expressions, “is not,” and “shall ascend out of the bottomless pit,” or “is not, and yet is,” or “is not, even he is the eighth,” must refer to some great changes to take place in the Roman Empire, subsequently to its pagan form. What these changes were is clearly set forth in another prophecy concerning Rome, given us in the eighth chapter of Daniel, to a brief consideration of which the attention of the reader is now invited. Here Rome throughout its entire history is represented by the single symbol of a horn, little at first, but waxing exceeding great, and finally being broken without hand, the same as is said of the great image of chapter 2, when the stone smites it upon the feet. But Rome went through some very wonderful metamorphoses; and the prophecy undertakes to note these changes without destroying the unity of the symbol. It is all the while one horn; but it appears in two characters apparently antagonistic to each other. One phase which the empire had long maintained was suddenly met by a hostile influence which arose in the empire itself, and which completely changed it over into another phase; and this, though prompted by the same spirit, was apparently the deadly antagonist of the first. The symbol is viewed as an oppressor of the church, and in its first phase is called “the daily” (desolation), and in its second phase, “the transgression of desolation.” The first was pagan, the second professedly Christian. And this change could be accomplished only by the taking away of paganism by the corrupted form of Christianity which finally took possession of the Roman world. Rome in its pagan form was a persecutor of the people of God, first in the persons of the Jews, and, secondly, in the persons of Christians. And in its papal form, it persecuted more terribly still, true Christians who refused to follow the apostasy. But between the gradual undermining and overthrow of paganism, and the degeneracy of a professedly Christian church into a persecuting power, there must have been a period during which Christians ceased to be the

«Back «Hit «Prev. Pub. «Pg   Pg» Next Pub.» Hit» Forward»