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The Story of the Seer of Patmos - Contents
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    The struggle between truth and error has always been a bitter one. No great light has ever shone upon the earth for which the archenemy has not had a counterfeit, containing enough of the truth to make it palatable to those whose taste for spiritual food is not the keenest; and yet, with all this, God has used, these very deceptions, to reveal the greatness of His love. The student of prophecy should bear in mind that before John was allowed to hear the trumpets, Christ was presented as full of righteousness.SSP 161.1

    God plans from eternity; and while Satan worked hard for the utter destruction of all things, yet the guiding hand of Jehovah still controlled affairs; and preceding the setting up of the papacy, the eye of the Infinite One saw those who would give the last message to the world and see the triumph of truth. Thus MarginAnd there was war in heaven: Michael and his angels fought against the dragon; and the dragon fought and his angels. Revelation 12:7.
    Hebrews 12:4.
    Luke 2:32.
    Matthew 24:24.
    2 Corinthians 11:14, 15.
    2 Thessalonians 2:10-12.
    Proverbs 4:18, 19.
    Revelation 8:3.
    Matthew 22:11, 12.
    Romans 4:5-7.
    Matthew 6:22, 23.
    Mark 4:4, 14.
    Psalm 19:4.
    Romans 10:18.
    Romans 1:19, 20.
    Acts 13:47.
    He said, It is a light thing that thou shouldest be my servant to raise up the tribes of Jacob, and to restore the preserved of Israel: I will also give thee for a light to the Gentiles, that thou mayest be my salvation unto the end of the earth. Isaiah 49:6.
    when the “mystery of iniquity” thought to reign supreme, it found that the seed of truth, which would inevitably cause its overthrow, had already been planted by God, in the Western Empire. Events which took place in the eastern third of the world, and which finally centered about Constantinople, the capital of the Eastern Empire, show, with equal clearness, the wonderful foresight and wisdom of the Saviour. Satan may be rich in resources, but the God of heaven knows a thousand ways to thwart his every scheme. The history of the fifth trumpet is another exemplification of this fact.
    SSP 161.2

    The barbarian hordes had spent their strength in the overthrow of the Western Empire, and had, in the course of a few years, laid aside their savage ways, and assumed the manners of the conquered people with whom they lived. But the Eastern Empire was as full of weakness and pollution as the Western, and its downfall was just as certain, although it came in an entirely different way. “The fifth angel sounded, and I saw a star fall from heaven unto the earth: and to him was given the key of the bottomless pit.” The north of Asia had sent forth its hordes of barbarians, who passed like waves of the sea over the entire continent of Europe, even to the British Isles. From the central portion of western Asia, the Gospel was spread as the life and light of all mankind.SSP 162.1

    Near the close of the sixth century there was born in Mecca, of the princes of Arabia, a man who claimed direct descent from Ishmael, the son of Abraham. This man was Mohammed, the son of Abdallah, and the founder of a MarginBecause thy rage against me and thy tumult is come up into mine ears, therefore will I put my hook in thy nose, and my bridle in thy lips, and I will turn thee back by the way by which thou camest. 2 Kings 19:28.
    Isaiah 37:29.
    I say unto you, That many shall come from the east and west, and shall sit down with Abraham, and Isaac, and Jacob, in the kingdom of heaven. Matthew 8:11.
    Jesus knew from the beginning who they were that believed not, and who should betray him. John 6:64.
    Isaiah 37:26-29.
    While they promise them liberty, they themselves are the servants of corruption: for of whom a man is overcome, of the same is he brought in bondage. 2 Peter 2:19.
    I will deliver them to be removed into all the kingdoms of the earth for their hurt, to be a reproach and a proverb, a taunt and a curse, in all places whither I shall drive them. Jeremiah 24:9, 10.
    And the fifth angel sounded, and I saw a star fall from heaven unto the earth: and to him was given the key of the bottomless pit. Revelation 9:1.
    Ezekiel 26:20.
    Ezekiel 39:2-4.
    The Gentiles shall see thy righteousness, and all kings thy glory: and thou shalt be called by a new name, which the mouth of the Lord shall name. Isaiah 62:1, 2.
    The princes are rebellious, and companions of thieves: every one loveth gifts, and followeth after rewards: they judge not the fatherless, neither doth the cause of the widow come unto them. Isaiah 1:23.
    faith, which, to-day has many thousand adherents. “Arabia,” says Gibbon, “was free; the adjacent kingdoms were shaken by the storms of conquest and tyranny, and persecuted sects fled to the happy land where they might profess what they believed, and practice what they professed.” In Arabia were gathered, at this time, Christians, Jews, Persian fire-worshipers, and representatives of all sects and beliefs.
    SSP 162.2

    Mohammed was acquainted with them all as he mingled in the thoroughfares of Mecca, and in his journeys to Damascus, and seaports of Syria.SSP 163.1

    Mohammed was of a serious mind, and it was his custom to retire one; month each year to a cave, a few miles from Mecca, where he gave himself to; fasting and prayer. On his return from one of these seasons of seclusion he announced his belief in one God, and that Mohammed was the prophet of God. This was the beginning of Islamism. The prophet first taught in his own family, and gradually gained a number of converts. His flight, from Mecca, called the Hegira, [a. d.622] is the era of his glory, and the date from which the Mohammedans compute their time. In opposition to the forms and ceremonies of the numerous worshipers who congregated at Mecca, and to the professed Christians who revered the images of saints and martyrs, the simple principles of the new religious leader called for prayer, fasting, and alms. Five times a day, his followers all over the world turn their eyes toward Mecca, and lift their hearts in prayer. MarginBut were mingled among the heathen, and learned their works. Psalm 106:35-42.
    Therefore speak unto them, and say unto them, Thus saith the Lord God; Every man of the house of Israel that setteth up his idols in his heart, and putteth the stumbling-block of his iniquity before his face, and cometh to the prophet; I the Lord will answer him that cometh according to the multitude of his idols;
    That I may take the house of Israel in their own heart, because they are all estranged from me through their idols.
    And if the prophet be deceived when he hath spoken a thing, I the Lord have deceived that prophet, and I will stretch out my hand upon him, and will destroy him from the midst of my people Israel.
    And they shall bear the punishment of their iniquity: the punishment of the prophet shall be even as the punishment of him that seeketh unto him. Ezekiel 14:4-10.
    Paradise, where the pleasures of this life are enjoyed in an exaggerated form throughout eternity, is the reward held out to the faithful. Wherever the followers of Mohammed met the foreigner, there was a single rule of action. “Confess,” said the Mussulman, “that there is but one God, and that Mohammed is His prophet; pay tribute, or choose death.” The atoning blood of Christ was spurned. Jesus was a prophet, they thought; but He, like Moses, was inferior to Mohammed. The Bible of the Christians was replaced by the Koran. True, the simple faith and austere practices of the Mohammedans were, to all outward appearances, a reform over the apostasy of the Greek Catholics; but in the rejection of Christ, the Mohammedan had nothing in which to place his faith, save in his own ability to obtain righteousness by works. So while the papacy was exalting man in the West, and perfecting its system of self-righteousness, the new religion of the East was propagating, under another name, the same device of the devil to destroy the souls of men.
    SSP 163.2

    The Arabs, or the Saracens, had never exercised any influence in the earth. In the history of nations, these free men of the desert had passed with scarcely a notice. Mohammedanism united the scattered tribes, and sent them forth as the conquerors of nations. The rapid progress which attended the Saracen arms was due, in great measure, to the strife between the Romans and Chosroes, the head of the modern Persian Empire. This strife resulted in the fall MarginThe way of peace they know not; and there is no judgment in their goings: they have made them crooked paths: whosoever goeth therein shall not know peace. Isaiah 59:3-8.
    Wherefore have we fasted, say they, and thou seest not? wherefore have we afflicted our soul, and thou takest no knowledge? Behold, in the day of your fast ye find pleasure, and exact all your labours.
    Behold, ye fast for strife and debate, and to smite with the fist of wickedness: ye shall not fast as ye do this day, to make your voice to be heard on high. Isaiah 58:3-7.
    There came forth a spirit, and stood before the Lord, and said, I will persuade him.
    And the Lord said unto him, Wherewith? And he said, I will go forth, and I will be a lying spirit in the mouth of all his prophets. And he said, Thou shalt persuade him, and prevail also: go forth, and do so. 1 Kings 22:21, 22.
    of the latter. Modern Persia had stood as a barrier wall, keeping in check the power of Mohammed; but when that power fell, the barrier was gone, the “bottomless pit” opened, and the Saracens deluged the world. When the “bottomless pit” was opened, there arose a smoke which hid the face of the sun. The figure is a strong one, representing the darkening effect of Mohammedanism, as it spread over the face of the earth.
    SSP 164.1

    This same characteristic is emphasized in the symbols used throughout the history. “There came out of the smoke locusts upon the earth.” The Saracens themselves are called locusts by the prophet John, and the doctrine which impelled their actions was as a dense smoke, issuing out of a furnace. The work of these locust-like warriors is described in the eighth plague, sent upon the land of Egypt in the days when Pharaoh refused to let Israel go. “I will bring the locusts into thy coast: and they shall cover the face of the earth, that one cannot be able to see the earth: and they shall eat the residue of that which is escaped, ...and shall eat every tree which groweth for you out of the field: and they shall fill thy houses, and the houses of all thy servants, and the houses of all the Egyptians.”SSP 165.1

    The wisdom of Solomon led him to say, “The locusts have no king, yet go they forth all of them by bands.” In using this one figure the divine historian tells the whole story of the Saracen conquest. There was no king, there was no organized government; but there was one common faith which bound the hordes of Arabia to their caliph. When Mohammed first advocated MarginAnd he opened the bottomless pit; and there arose a smoke out of the pit, as the smoke of a great furnace; and the sun and the air were darkened by reason of the smoke of the pit. Revelation 9:2.
    And there came out of the smoke locusts upon the earth: and unto them was given power, as the scorpions of the earth have power. Revelation 9:3
    And the locusts went up over all the land of Egypt, and rested in all the coasts of Egypt: very grievous were they; before them there were no such locusts as they, neither after them shall be such.
    For they covered the face of the whole earth, so that the land was darkened; and they did eat every herb of the land, and all the fruit of the trees which the hail had left: and there remained not any green thing in the trees, or in the herbs of the field, through all the land of Egypt. Exodus 10:12-15.
    He gave also their increase unto the caterpillar, and their labour unto the locust. Psalm 78:46.
    He spake, and the locusts came, and caterpillars, and that without number. Psalm 105:34.
    Proverbs 30:27.
    In those days there was no king in Israel, but every man did that which was right in his own eyes. Judges 17:6.
    his doctrine, he gained adherents by the power of argument; but this process soon became too slow for his ambition, and arms were taken to defend and extend the territory of the new religion. In the course of a few years, Persia, Syria, Egypt, Africa and Spain had been conquered by Saracen arms. It was in 632 that Caled, the lieutenant of the first caliph, began the conquest of Persia. His efforts were crowned with victory. To every man was offered death, or the acceptance of the Mohammedan doctrine. With the sword above their heads, multitudes thanked God for Mohammed, His prophet.
    SSP 165.2

    When the tribes of Arabia were gathered for the conquest of Syria, the caliph Abubeker instructed the chiefs of the army as follows: “When you fight the battles of the Lord, acquit yourselves like men, without turning your backs; but let not your victory be stained with the blood of women or children. Destroy no palm trees, nor burn any fields of corn. Cut down no fruit trees, nor do any mischief to cattle, only such as you kill to eat.... As you go on, you will find some religious persons who live retired in monasteries, and propose to themselves to serve God that way; let them alone, and neither kill them nor destroy their monasteries: and you will find another sort of people that belong to the synagogue of Satan, who have shaven crowns; be sure you cleave their skulls, and give them no quarter till they either turn Mohammedan or pay tribute.”SSP 166.1

    It would seem that God put a spirit of gentleness into the hearts of these warriors toward MarginThus saith the Lord concerning the prophets that make my people err, that bite with their teeth, and cry, Peace; and he that putteth not into their mouths, they even prepare war against him.
    Therefore night shall be unto you, that ye shall not have a vision; and it shall be dark unto you, that ye shall not divine; and the sun shall go down over the prophets, and the day shall be dark over them.
    Then shall the seers be ashamed, and the diviners confounded: yea; they shall all cover their lips; for there is no answer of God. Micah 3:4-7.
    That I have set before you life and death. Deuteronomy 30:19.
    And it was commanded them that they should not hurt the grass of the earth, neither any green thing, neither any tree; but only those men which have not the seal of God in their foreheads. Revelation 9:4.
    No weapon that is formed against thee shall prosper; and every tongue that shall rise against thee in judgment thou shalt condemn. This is the heritage of the servants of the Lord, and their righteousness is of me, saith the Lord. Isaiah 54:17.
    those Christians, who, in the solitudes of Syria, were keeping the law of God; but the tonsured priests and monks were to be slain without mercy, unless they accepted the faith of Mohammed and paid tribute. Syria was soon wholly in the hands of the Saracens.
    SSP 166.2

    In 638 the conquest of Egypt was begun. The conquest of Africa, from the Nile to the Atlantic, was attempted by the caliph Othman in 647; but the Moors were not conquered until the beginning of the next century, and then the Moslem faith was accepted from Syria to the Straits of Gibraltar. In 711 the Arabs crossed these straits into Spain, and the horn of the Crescent, the Moslem standard, reached the Pyrenees. Thus the power of their arms was extended. They had hoped to encircle the Mediterranean, and, having driven out the papacy, to seat Mohammedanism in place of Christianity in the City of Seven Hills. But in 732 a. d., the onward progress of the Saracens was checked by Charles Martel, in the battle of Tours, in France, and relinquishing the hope of gaining Europe on the west, the Mohammedans retreated into Spain. Here they established schools, and by the cultivation of the arts and sciences, won, by the intellect, what they had failed to gain by the sword. It was from Toledo, Salerno, and other Spanish centers of learning, that the light of scientific knowledge shone into the darkness of Europe during the Middle Ages, and acted its part in breaking the strength of the papacy at the dawn of the Reformation.SSP 167.1

    This is the history of the Saracens as they marched south and west. They gradually lost MarginWhen a man’s ways please the Lord, he maketh even his enemies to be at peace with him. Proverbs 16:7.
    For before these days rose up Theudas, boasting himself to be somebody; to whom a number of men, about four hundred, joined themselves: who was slain; and all, as many as obeyed him, were scattered, and brought to nought.
    After this man rose up Judas of Galilee in the days of the taxing, and drew away much people after him: he also perished; and all, even as many as obeyed him, were dispersed.
    And now I say unto you, Refrain from these men, and let them alone: for if this counsel or this work be of men, it will come to nought. Acts 5:36-38.
    They have spoken words, swearing falsely in making a covenant: thus judgment springeth up as hemlock in the furrows of the field. Hosea 10:4.
    Though he be fruitful among his brethren, an east wind shall come, the wind of the Lord shall come up from the wilderness, and his spring shall become dry, and his fountain shall be dried up: he shall spoil the treasure of all pleasant vessels. Hosea 13:15.
    their warlike characteristics, and conquered by the power of the intellect. The attacks on the Eastern Empire were of a different character. The constant pressure and oft-repeated assaults of the Saracens led men to wish for death. To the Saracens who fell in battle was given the sure promise of a life in paradise. This made them unmindful of death, and especially in the East the Saracens stung men with their false doctrines, and tormented them by repeated attacks.
    SSP 167.2

    Only forty-six years after the flight of Mohammed from Mecca, (a. d. 668), the Saracen army appeared under the walls of Constantinople. They were especially anxious to gain possession of this center of wealth and commerce, and there was a saying among the followers of the prophet, that the first army which besieged the city should have its sins forgiven. With this inducement ever before them, the troops landed and formed the siege. But they had underestimated the strength of the fortress, and were dismayed by the use of fire, recently introduced into Grecian warfare. On the approach of winter, they retreated; but for six summers, in succession, the siege was carried on without success. MarginDestroy, O Lord, and divide their tongues: for I have seen violence and strife in the city.
    Day and night they go about it upon the walls thereof: mischief also and sorrow are in the midst of it.
    Wickedness is in the midst thereof: deceit and guile depart not from her streets. Psalm 55 9-11.
    Their poison is like the poison of a serpent: they are like the deaf adder that stoppeth her ear. Psalm 58:4.
    They have sharpened their tongues like a serpent; adders’ poison is under their lips. Psalm 140:3.
    Which long for death, but it cometh not; and dig for it more than for hid treasures;
    Which rejoice exceedingly, and are glad, when they can find the grave. Job 3:21, 22.
    For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows. 1 Timothy 6:10.
    He casteth forth his ice like morsels: who can stand before his cold? Psalm 147:17.
    An inheritance may be gotten hastily at the beginning; but the end thereof shall not be blessed. Proverbs 20:21.
    Finally in 677 a thirty years’ truce was signed by the Greeks and Saracens at Damascus.
    SSP 168.1

    During the years 716 and 718 a Saracen army again overran Asia Minor, crossed the Hellespont, and for the first time, landed on European soil. History states, that the general stood at the head of one hundred and twenty thousand Arabs and Persians, and that one thousand eight hundred ships approached the Bosporus, both armies intending to attack the capital at the same moment. Again Greek fire saved the threatened empire. The citizens of Constantinople loaded ships with combustibles, sent these into the midst of the fleet of the enemy, and the Arabs with their arms and vessels were consumed by the flames or the waves. The following winter was unusually severe, and this, together with the aid rendered the Greeks by an army of Bulgarians, and the report of still stronger forces who were arming in the West, made it advisable to give up, this second attempt, to capture Constantinople. These were the “locusts” that spread over the face of the earth. Like the insect from which they are named, they devoured everything that came in their way, and stung men as a scorpion stings with its tail.SSP 169.1

    The failure of the Arabs to capture Constantinople during these years was due to the absence of a centralized government; for the Saracens were still controlled by caliphs; and jealousy had led to the elevation of several leaders, each faction having its following. They went, as Solomon said of the locusts, in bands without a king. The dash of the Arab cavalry is proverbial in history. Arabia is considered to MarginBehold, therefore I will deliver thee to the men of the east for a possession, and they shall set their palaces in thee, and make their dwellings in thee: they shall eat thy fruit, and they shall drink thy milk. Ezekiel 25:4.
    Thy crowned are as the locusts, and thy captains as the great grasshoppers, which camp in the hedges in the cold day, but when the sun ariseth they flee away, and their place is not known where they are. Nahum 3:17.
    Thou shalt carry much seed out into the field, and shalt gather but little in; for the locust shall consume it. Deuteronomy 28:38.
    Without counsel purposes are disappointed: but in the multitude of counsellors they are established. Proverbs 15:22.
    They said, Nay; but we will have a king over us;
    That we also may be like all the nations; and that our king may judge us, and go out before us, and fight our battles. 1 Samuel 8:19, 20.
    be the home of the horse; and Gibbon says (chapter 50): “These horses are educated in the tents, among the children of the Arabs, with a tender familiarity, which trains them in the habits of gentleness and attachment. They are accustomed only to walk or to gallop; their sensations are not blunted by the incessant abuse of the spur and the whip; their powers are preserved for the moments of flight and pursuit; but no sooner do they feel the touch of the hand, or the stirrup, than they dart away with the swiftness of the wind; and if their friend be dismounted in the rapid career, they instantly stop till he has recovered his seat.” Since so much of the success of these human locusts depended upon the steeds which they rode, it is not surprising that the prophet John saw them “like unto horses prepared unto battle;” and it is also not surprising to find that the tail of a horse was often used as an ensign by the Bedouin chiefs. The crown worn by the Arab, was the turban which was unfurled when Mohammed became prince of Medina, and “to assume which is proverbially to turn Mussulman.” Personally the Arab is grave and dignified; “his speech is slow, weighty, and concise; he is seldom provoked to laughter, his only gesture is that of stroking his beard, the venerable symbol of manhood.” Though they wore long hair, which to the European has the appearance of effeminacy, yet from the days of Ishmael, a tenderness mingled with the savage nature of the lion, seems to have characterized the men of the desert Gibbon, in his. graphic description of the Arab, nicely illustrates this fact in these words: “If a Bedouin discovers from afar a solitary MarginTheir horses also are swifter than the leopards, and are more fierce than the evening wolves: and their horsemen shall spread themselves, and their horsemen shall come from far; they shall fly as the eagle that hasteth to eat. Habakkuk 1:8.
    Zechariah 10:3.
    I hearkened and heard, but they spake not aright: no man repented him of his wickedness, saying, What have I done? every one turned to his course, as the horse rusheth into the battle. Jeremiah 8:6.
    The horse is prepared against the day of battle: but Safety is of the Lord. Proverbs 21:31.
    And to them it was given that they should not kill them, but that they should be tormented five months; and their torment was as the torment of a scorpion, when he striketh a man.
    And in those days shall men seek death, and shall not find it; and shall desire to die, and death shall flee from them.
    And the shapes of the locusts were tike unto horses prepared unto battle; and on their heads were as it were crowns like gold, and their faces were as the faces of men.
    And they had hair as the hair of women, and their teeth were as the teeth of lions.
    And they had breastplates, as it were breastplates of iron; and the sound of their wings was as the sound of chariots of many horses running to battle.
    And they had tails like unto scorpions, and there were stings in their tails: and their power was to hurt men five months.
    Revelation 9:5-10.
    Death and life are in the power of the tongue. Proverbs 18:21.
    If a man have long hair, it is a shame unto him. 1 Corinthians 11:14.
    He will be a wild man; his hand will be against every man, and every man’s hand against him; and he shall dwell in the presence of all his brethren. Genesis 16:12.
    traveler, he rides furiously against him, crying with a loud voice, ‘Undress thyself, thy aunt [my wife] is without a garment.’ A ready submission entitles him to mercy; resistance will provoke the aggressor, and his own blood must expiate the blood which he presumes to shed in legitimate defence. A single robber, or a few associates, are branded with their genuine name; but the exploits of a numerous band assume the character of a lawful and honorable war. The temper of a people thus armed against mankind, was doubly inflamed by the domestic license of rapine, murder, and revenge.” The breastplates of iron, spoken of by John, refer to the cuirasses with which the soldiers were provided from the days of Mohammed.
    SSP 169.2

    Enough has been said to show the vividness of the prophetic description of the charge of the Arab cavalry, who were armed with scimiters, protected by cuirasses, and seated on horses swift as the wind.SSP 171.1

    “They had a king over them, which is the angel of the bottomless pit, whose name is ...Destroyer.” This character might in truth be imputed to the Arab caliphs, who directed the armies for so many years after the death of Mohammed; but it is especially applicable to Othman, the founder of the Ottoman Empire. This, the first attempted centralization of government was the outgrowth of the doctrines of Mohammed. “Othman,” says the historian, “possessed, and perhaps surpassed, the ordinary virtues of a soldier; and the circumstances of time and place were propitious to his independence and success.” The close of the thirteenth century was near. The Crusades had MarginAnd unto him that smiteth thee on the one cheek offer also the other; and him that taketh away thy cloke forbid not to take thy coat also.
    Give to every man that asketh of thee; and of him that taketh away thy goods ask them not again. Luke 6:29, 30.
    An evil man seeketh only rebellion: therefore a cruel messenger shall be sent against him. Proverbs 17:11.
    A man that hath friends must shew himself friendly: and there is a friend that sticketh closer than a brother. Proverbs 18:24.
    Order ye the buckler and shield, and draw near to battle.
    Harness the horses; and get up, ye horsemen, and stand forth with your helmets; furbish the spears, and put on the brigandines. Jeremiah 46:3, 4.
    And they had a king over them which is the angel of the bottom. Less pit, whose name in the He brew tongue is Abaddon, but in the Greek tongue hath his name Apollyon. Revelation 9:11.
    He beholdeth all high things: he is a king over all the children of pride. Job 41:34.
    I chose out their way, and sat chief, and dwelt as a king in the army. Job 29:25.
    thrust Europe against the Turks in a most reckless manner. Constantinople had numerous emperors, but the Greek government grew weaker, and the time of its destruction was stealthily approaching. “It was on July 27 a. d., 1299,” says Gibbon, “that Othman first invaded the territory of Nicomedia; and the singular accuracy of the date seems to disclose some foresight of the rapid and destructive growth of the monster.” More than human foresight recorded this date with such definiteness. To the prophet on Patmos, it had been revealed that “their power was to hurt men five months.”
    SSP 171.2

    Five prophetic months is the equivalent of one hundred and fifty literal years, one day meaning a year, and counting thirty days to the month. Since the exact day for the beginning of this power is given, the expiration of the five months may be reckoned to the day. It closed July 27, 1449. It is these dates which enable the student of the trumpets, to locate the events which take place under each trumpet. These dates are “nails in a sure place” for both the first and the second woe.SSP 172.1

    To show that in 1299 power was given “to hurt men five months” we have the testimony of historians. After speaking of the invasion by Othman of Nicomedia, which was the eastern frontier of the Greek Empire, Gibbon continues: “The annals of the twenty-seven years of his reign would exhibit a repetition of the same inroads; and his hereditary troops were multiplied in each campaign by the accession of captives and volunteers.” The successors of Othman, the founder of the Ottoman Empire, each pushed his conquests MarginThe residue of the number of archers, the mighty men of the children of Kedar, shall be diminished: for the Lord God of Israel hath spoken it. Isaiah 21:17.
    Tell ye, and bring them near; yea, let them take counsel together: who hath declared this from ancient time? who hath told it from that time? have not I the Lord? And there is no God else beside me; a just God and a Saviour; there is none beside me. Isaiah 45:21.
    five months.
    Genesis 7:11. The flood began the 17th day of the 2nd month.
    Genesis 8:3, 4. Waters abated the 17th day of the 7th month.
    Genesis 7:24. The flood continued 150 days, hence 150 days-5 months.
    Each day for a year. Numbers 14:34.
    July 27,1299 plus 150 years-July 27, 1449.
    Ezra 9:8.
    Calling a ravenous bird from the east, the man that executeth my counsel from a far country: yea, I have spoken it, I will also bring it to pass; I have purposed it, I will also do it. Isaiah 46:11.
    Ye have plowed wickedness, ye have reaped iniquity; ye have eaten the fruit of lies: because thou didst trust in thy way, in the multitude of thy mighty men. Hosea 10:13.
    nearer to the coveted seat of power. A regular standing army of twenty-five thousand Moslems was organized by the son of Othman. Asia Minor was completely in his hands, and the seven churches referred to in the first chapter of Revelation were desecrated by the religion of Mohammed. So near was the Turkish rule to the throne that in 1346 Orchan, the successor of Othman, demanded and obtained, as a wife, the daughter of the Greek emperor, and the princess left her home in Constantinople to live in the harem of the Turk. Between 1360 and 1389, the third sovereign of the Turks, conquered, Thrace, and fixed the capital of his empire and his religion at Adrianople, almost within the shadow of Constantinople. Never before had the Greek Empire been surrounded on all sides by the foe. The fourth king, Bajazet by name, was surnamed Ilderim, or “the lightning,” because of the fiery energy of his soul, and the rapidity of his destructive marches. Constantinople was sorely pressed, and were not the hand of God recognized, the fact that the downfall was delayed for another fifty years might seem a mere accident. Called to contend with a Scythian force from the East, the Turks were obliged to postpone activities in Greece for a number of years. The Byzantine court, instead MarginHe shall enter also into the glorious land, and many countries shall be overthrown: but these shall escape out of his hand, even Edom, and Moab, and the chief of the children of Ammon.
    He shall stretch forth his hand also upon the countries: and the land of Egypt shall not escape.
    But he shall have power over the treasures of gold and of silver, and over all the precious things of Egypt: and the Libyans and the Ethiopians shall be at his steps. Daniel 11:41-43.
    And he said unto them, I beheld Satan as lightning fall from heaven. Luke 10:18.
    Heaven and earth shall pass away, but my words shall not pass away. Matthew 24:35.
    His lord was wroth, and delivered him to the tormentors, till he should pay all that was due unto him. Matthew 18:34.
    of profiting by the imminent danger, grew weaker. The one hundred and fifty years of torment, not destruction, was about to close. “One woe is past; and, behold, there come two woes more hereafter.” The restraining hand of God had held contending forces in check, waiting, waiting, until the extreme limit of time, for men to acknowledge the righteousness of Jehovah. But at the sounding of the sixth trumpet a voice was heard from the four horns of the altar,-the altar before which Christ offers the prayers of saints,-saying, “Loose the four angels which are bound in the great river Euphrates.” During the one hundred and fifty years, the Turks had power to torment, but when their armies seemed on the very verge of victory over the Greek Empire, their force was abated by troubles from the regions of the Euphrates. (See Gibbon, Chap. 65). The time was coming when they would not only torment, but kill. In 1448 the death of John Palæologus left the throne of Constantinople in a weak and precarious condition. Constantine, his successor, could claim no territory beyond the limits of the city, and the throne was already held by virtue of the grace of Amurath, the Turkish ruler. The gracious approbation of the Turkish sultan announced the supremacy of Constantine, and the approaching downfall of the Eastern Empire. The Turkish power had been bound, in a measure, by Rome; for as long as Rome held Constantinople, the Saracen power was limited in the East. When the sultan dictated to Rome, then, were fulfilled the words, “Loose the four angels which are bound in the great river Euphrates.” These words seem especially to refer MarginOne woe is past; and, behold, there come two woes more here after. Revelation 9:12.
    In the fourth generation they shall come hither again: for the iniquity of the Amorites is not yet full. Genesis 15:16.
    Another angel came and stood at the altar, having a golden censer; and there was given unto him much incense, that he should offer it with the prayers of all saints upon the golden altar which was before the throne. Revelation 8:3.
    Who can bring a clean thing out of an unclean? not one.
    Seeing his days are determined, the number of his months are with thee, thou hast appointed his bounds that he cannot pass;
    Turn from him, that he may rest, till he shall accomplish, as an hireling, his day. Job 14:4-6.
    The steps of his strength shall be straitened, and his own counsel shall cast him down.
    For he is cast into a net by his own feet, and he walketh upon a snare.
    The gin shall take him by the heel, and the robber shall prevail against him.
    The snare is laid for him in the ground, and trap for him in the way. Job 18:7-10.
    And the sixth angel sounded, and I heard a voice from the four horns of the golden attar which is before God,
    Saying to the sixth angel which had the trumpet, Loose the four angels which are bound in the great river Euphrates. Revelation 9:13, 14
    to Bagdad, Damascus, Aleppo and Iconium,-four sultanies bordering on the region of the Euphrates. No power could now resist, and the Moslem ruler soon gained the long coveted fortress on the Bosporus. The death of Amurath in 1451, and the succession of Mohammed II., a wily man full of ambition and restless of restraint, did not retard the conquest. Mohammed’s one design was to capture Constantinople. “Peace was on his lips but war was in his heart,” and every energy was bent toward the accomplishment of this design. At midnight he once started from his bed, and demanded the immediate attendance of his prime vizier. The man came trembling, fearing the detection of some previous crime. He made his offering to the sultan, but was met with the words, “I ask a present far more valuable and important,-Constantinople.” Mohammed II. tested the loyalty of his soldiers, warned his ministers against the bribery of the Romans, studied the art of war and the use of firearms. He engaged the services of a founder of cannon, who promised weapons that could batter down the walls of the city. In April, 1453, the memorable siege was formed. At the sound of the war trumpet, the forces of Mohammed II. were increased by swarms of fearless fanatics until, as Phranza has said, the besieging army numbered two hundred and fifty-eight thousand. Constantinople fell; the last vestige of Roman greatness was gone, and the Moslem conquerors trampled the religion of Rome in the dust. This memorable event affected all future history. The fall shocked Europe; and the convulsions had not passed, before the light of the Reformation broke the MarginSo I returned, and considered all the oppressions that are done under the sun: and behold the tears of such as were oppressed, and they had no comforter; and on the side of their oppressors there was power; but they had no comforter. Ecclesiastes 4:1.
    My horn shalt thou exalt like the horn of an unicorn. Psalm 92:10.
    Moreover I saw under the sun the place of judgment, that wickedness was there; and the place of righteousness, that iniquity was there. Ecclesiastes 3:16.
    For a dream cometh through the multitude of business. Ecclesiastes 5:3.
    Lo, this only have I found, that God hath made man upright; but they have sought out many inventions. Ecclesiastes 7:29.
    Daniel 2:40, 41.
    Thus saith the Lord God; Remove the diadem, and take off the crown: this shall not be the same: exalt him that is low, and abase him that is high.
    I will overturn, overturn, overturn, it: and it shall be no more, until he come whose right it is; and I will give it him. Ezekiel 21:26, 27.
    And the four angels were loosed, which were prepared for an hour, and a day, and a month, and a year, for to slay the third part of men.
    And the number of the army of the horsemen were two hundred thousand thousand: and I heard the number of them.
    And thus I saw the horses in the vision, and them that sat on them, having breastplates of fire, and of iacinth, and brimstone: and the heads of the horses were as the heads of lions; and out of their mouths issued fire and smoke and brimstone. Revelation 9:15-17
    darkness which shrouded the Western Empire. While the smoke from the “bottomless pit” was settling over the East, streaks of light heralded a coming dawn in the nations of Europe.
    SSP 172.2

    The characteristics, given by the prophet in describing the Turkish forces under the second woe, are similar to the description of the cavalry who fought for Mohammed under the first woe. The breastplate of iron and the scimiter of the Saracens, had been replaced by the firearms of the Turks, but the fury of the charge in the fifteenth century had lost none of the terrors of those earlier horsemen. Fire, smoke, and brimstone issued from the mouths of these warriors. The discharge of the firearms, as seen by the prophet in vision, appeared like fire issuing from the mouths of the horses. The power was also in their tail. Isaiah says, “The ancient and honorable, he is the head; and the prophet that teacheth lies, he is the tail.” Their military valor was one thing in favor of the Turks; the unity of the faith in Mohammed and the zeal inspired by that prophet to kill the “infidels” (Christians), was a factor equally as potent.SSP 176.1

    The power which came on the stage of action July 27, 1449, was to bear sway for an hour and a day and a month and a year,-three hundred ninety-one years and fifteen days, literally speaking. MarginBy these three was the third part of men killed, by the fire, and by the smoke, and by the brimstone, which issued out of their mouths.
    For their power is in their mouth, and in their tails: for their tails were like unto serpents, and had heads, and with them they do hurt. Revelation 9:18, 19.
    Hast thou given the horse strength? hast thou clothed his neck with thunder? Job 39:19-25.
    explanation of Revelation 9:15.
    I have appointed thee each day for a year. Ezekiel 4:6.
    1 prophetic day=1 year, or 360 literal days.
    1 prophetic hour=1-24 of 360 days, or 15 days.
    1 prophetic day=1 literal year.
    1 prophetic month=30 literal years.
    1 prophetic year=360 literal years.
    360 years plus 30 years plus 1 year=391 years.
    Total, 391 years and 15 days.
    July 27, 1449, plus 391 years, 15 days=Aug. 11, 1840.
    This is a wonderful prophecy, the only one in the Bible where the time of the fulfillment is given to the very day. At the end of this period, Turkey would cease to be an independent power. Three hundred and ninety-one years and fifteen days from July 27, 1449, brings us to August 11, 1840. There are four great waymarks in the world’s history connected with Constantinople. First, when it was founded in 330 a. d. second, its capture by the Turks July 27, 1449; third, when the sultan of Turkey signed away his independence August 11, 1840. There is no date given for the fourth great waymark; namely, when the capital of Turkey will be removed from Constantinople to Jerusalem “between the seas in the glorious holy mountain.”
    SSP 176.2

    In 1838 Josiah Litch and William Miller, after a careful study of the prophecies, came to the conclusion that on this last date nations might expect to see the Turkish sultan surrender his power. This prophecy was published to the world, but there were events transpiring which also called the attention of nations to Constantinople. The sultan of Turkey and Mehemet Ali, pasha of Egypt, were at war, the pasha refusing an indemnity demanded by the ruler of Turkey. In 1839 the pasha was victorious in battle over the Turkish army, and he sent another force under command of his son into Syria and Asia Minor, and threatened to carry his victorious arms against Constantinople. At this juncture, England, Austria, Prussia and Russia, combined in the demand that the pasha should confine himself to Syria and Egypt. A council of these four powers was held July 15, 1840. The ruler of Turkey agreed to abide by their Marginfour waymarks in the history of constantinople.
    1st. The dragon gave him his power, and his seat, and great authority. Revelation 13:2.
    2nd. Loose the four angels which are bound in the great river Euphrates. Revelation 9:14.
    3rd. And the four angels were loosed, which were prepared for an hour, and a day, and a month, and a year. Revelation 9:15.
    4th. And he shall plant the tabernacles of his palace between the seas in the glorious holy mountain yet he shall come to his end, and none shall help him. Daniel 11:45.
    I have declared the former things from the beginning; and they went forth out of my mouth, and I shewed them; I did them suddenly, and they came to pass. Isaiah 48:3-6.
    Whoso is wise, and will observe these things, even they shall understand the lovingkindness of the Lord. Psalm 107:43.
    For they know not to do right, saith the Lord, who store up violence and robbery in their palaces.
    Therefore thus saith the Lord God; An adversary there shall be even round about the land; and he shall bring down thy strength from thee, and thy palaces shall be spoiled. Amos 3:10, 11.
    decision, and was only too glad to have his life saved by their intervention. He thereby voluntarily surrendered all rights into the hands of the combined forces of Western Europe. In the official document drawn up by the representatives of the nations concerned, are these words: “It having been felt that all the zealous labors of the conferences of London in the settlement of the pasha’s pretensions were useless, and that the only public way was to have recourse to coercive measures to reduce him to obedience in case he persisted in not listening to pacific overtures, the powers have, together with the Ottoman plenipotentiary, drawn up and signed a treaty whereby the sultan offers the pasha the hereditary government of Egypt, ...the pasha, on his part, evacuating all other parts of the sultan’s dominions now occupied by him and returning the Ottoman fleet.... If the pasha refuses to accede to them, it is evident that the evil consequences to fall upon him will be attributable solely to his own fault.”
    SSP 177.1

    This treaty was signed, and the ultimatum was officially put in the power of Mehemet Ali on August 11, 1840. Since that time Turkey has been known everywhere as the “Sick Man of the East.” Daniel prophesied concerning him, saying, “He shall plant the tabernacles of his palace between the seas in the glorious holy mountain; yet he shall come to his end, and none shall help him.” At any moment, when the jealous powers of Europe can decide, either peaceably, or in battle, which one of them shall occupy Constantinople, the “Sick Man” will speedily take his departure from Europe. That movement, for which nations are now on the MarginAll the men of thy confederacy have brought thee even to the border: the men that were at peace with thee have deceived thee, and prevailed against thee; they that eat thy bread have laid a wound under thee: there is none understanding in him. Obadiah 7.
    His mischief shall return upon his own head, and his violent dealing shall come down upon his own pate. Psalm 7:16.
    He shall spread forth his hands in the midst of them, as he that swimmeth spreadeth forth his hands to swim: and he shall bring down their pride together with the spoils of their hands.
    And the fortress of the high fort of thy walls shall he bring down, lay low, and bring to the ground, even to the dust. Isaiah 25:11, 12.
    Daniel 11:45.
    He shall come to his end, and none shall help him.
    And at that time shall Michael stand up, the great prince which standeth for the children of thy people: and there shall be a time of trouble, such as never was since there was a nation even to that same time: and at that time thy people shall be delivered, every one that shall be found written in the book. Daniel 11:45; 12:1.
    Revelation 7:1.
    There shall be signs in the sun, and in the moon, and in the stars; and upon the earth distress of nations, with perplexity; the sea and the waves roaring;
    Men’s hearts failing them for fear, and for looking after those things which are coming on the earth: for the powers of heaven shall be shaken.
    And then shall they see the Son of man coming in a cloud with power and great glory. Luke 21:25-27.
    alert, will be the sign of still more important changes in the heavenly court.
    SSP 178.1

    The importance of the prophecy, and the exactness with which it was fulfilled, to the very day, should lead to a careful investigation of that divine history, which circles about the years 1840 to 1844. Its study will lead men to look for changes in the heavens as well as upon earth; for when the capital of Turkey is removed to Palestine, then Christ, finishing His work in the sanctuary, throws His censer on the earth as a signal for the final dissolution of all things.SSP 179.1

    The closing words of the ninth chapter are a sad commentary on the condition of the world, and although the revelation of Jesus Christ is given in the Word, in nature, and may be read in the relation of nations to each other, yet “the rest of the men which were not killed by these plagues yet repented not of the works of their hands, that they should not worship devils, and idols of gold, and silver, and brass, and stone, and of wood.... Neither repented they of their murders, nor of their sorceries, nor of their fornication, nor of their thefts.”SSP 179.2

    As the end draws near iniquity waxes greater. The fall of nations has ever been used as a symbol of the final destruction of the earth. Men see these things and yet continue in their idolatry, their theft, and their fornication. How precious in the sight of the Lord is that little company who by faith see Jesus, and following Him in His work above, reflect His character to the world! The faithful ones are to-day being sealed; for we are nearing the close of time, and eternity will soon open to the redeemed. MarginBut sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear. 1 Peter 3:15.
    The angel took the censer, and filled it with fire of the altar, and cast it into the earth: and there were voices, and thunderings, and lightnings, and an earthquake. Revelation 8:5.
    John 15:5.
    Isaiah 5:12.
    And the rest of the men which were not killed by these plagues yet repented not of the works of their hands, that they should not worship devils, and idols of gold, and silver, and brass, and stone, and of wood: which neither can see, nor hear, nor walk:
    Neither repented they of their murders, nor of their sorceries nor of their fornication, nor of their thefts. Revelation 9:20, 21.
    Evil men and seducers shall wax worse and worse, deceiving, and being deceived. 2 Timothy 3:13.
    They shall be mine, saith the Lord of hosts, in that day when I make up my jewels; and I will spare them, as a man spareth his own son that serveth him. Malachi 3:17.
    The Lord said unto him, Go through the midst of the city, through the midst of Jerusalem, and set a mark upon the foreheads of the men that sigh and that cry for all the abominations that be done in the midst thereof. Ezekiel 9:4.
    SSP 179.3

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