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    A RESTORATION FORETOLD

    In the prophecy of Daniel, chapter 2, is the declaration that the God of Heaven shall set up a kingdom. By a comparison of the scriptures, we learn that this refers to a restoration of the kingdom which was overturned on account of the wickedness of Israel.RDAC 47.4

    And here a controversy has arisen, one party affirming that the expression “these kings,” in verse 44, refers to the four kingdoms without defining either, and that the fulfillment shows that it refers to the fourth, to wit, the Roman. In other words, that the God of Heaven set up this kingdom at or near the first advent of the Saviour. In favor of this view it is further said that the feet and toes, or divided state of the Roman Empire, are not called kings in this chapter, and, therefore, it must refer to those which are called kings. This reasoning we think is faulty. For,RDAC 48.1

    1. If “these kings” refers to the four parts of the image, that is, to Babylon, Persia, Greece, and Rome, then it could not be fulfilled if set up in the days of the fourth, or Roman. It was not, then, set up in the days of Babylon, nor of Persia, nor of Greece; and the phrase, “these kings,” cannot refer to the fourth one, the Roman.RDAC 48.2

    2. The margin of Daniel 2:44, has “Chald., their days.” Dr. Clarke says that from Daniel 2:4, to the end of chapter 7, it was written in Chaldee, or Syro-Chaldaic. The reader will notice that in these chapters, the margin constantly refers to the Chaldee, while the margin of the rest of the book refers to the Hebrew. Therefore, the literal, original reading is, “In their days shall the God of Heaven set up a kingdom.” No one can doubt that the pronoun “they,” in verse 43, refers to the powers represented by the toes of the image. And in verse 44, “their” certainly refers to the same. These divisions of verse 43 are the only antecedent of “their” in verse 44.RDAC 48.3

    3. But that the divisions of the Roman Kingdom do themselves mean kingdoms, we learn from Daniel 7, wherein is shown four great beasts, representing four kingdoms, as in Daniel 2. The fourth, the strongest of all, with great iron teeth, is the same as the iron part of the image; and the ten horns, the same as the toes of the image. But these horns are, in chapter 7:24, called ten kings, or kingdoms.RDAC 49.1

    4. The “stone” of the dream of chapter 2, is a symbol of this kingdom which the God of Heaven shall set up. But in the order of events, this stone is not brought into notice until after the development of the feet and toes of the image. Thus, the first that was seen of the stone, in the dream, it “smote the image upon his feet” that were of iron and clay, and the interpretation says, “In the days of these kings shall the God of Heaven set up a kingdom.” Now there is no harmony of the prophecy in any view that does not make “these kings” refer to the divisions of the Roman Empire.RDAC 49.2

    5. There is no force in the objection that has been urged, that the “ten kings” have not existed in the form and number necessary to fulfill the prophecy, if they were the kings referred to. The prophecy says, “They shall mingle themselves with the seed of men; but they shall not cleave one to another, even as iron is not mixed with clay.” This certainly contemplates a state of change, without the possibility of consolidation; just what has always been seen in the European States which grew up out of the ruins of the Roman Empire. And this is further shown in chapter 7:8, where the prophet beheld “another little horn” come up among them; then there were at that time eleven in all; and before this last one were three of the first plucked up; which left in view seven of the original horns, and eight in all. The prophecy evidently reveals the fact that in the days of the kingdoms rising out of the Roman Kingdom should the God of Heaven set up a kingdom; and though there may sometimes be more and sometimes less than ten, it does not destroy their identity as “these kings,” as this transition was clearly pointed out.RDAC 49.3

    6. A confirmation of this view is found in the fact that the prophecies of the two chapters are not only identical in their main features, but their finale is the same. In the second chapter, the God of Heaven sets up a kingdom; which, as will be hereafter shown, is fulfilled by his investing the Lord Jesus with kingly power; and it “shall not be left to other people,” that is, it shall be given to a people who shall possess it forever, without losing it or leaving it to others. And so of chapter 7, the vision concludes with giving the kingdom and dominion to the Son of man; and the interpretation concludes with giving the kingdom to the saints. But in this latter chapter it is clearly shown that the dominion passes from one of these beasts to another, and so on through the four; that the fourth is divided as represented by the horns, and the dominion, of course, is then found in these divisions. But “another little horn” arises, which takes great authority, and wears out the saints of the Most High. The characteristics of this little horn plainly show it to be the papal power, or ecclesiastical government of Rome, and this wearing out of the saints of the Most High was fulfilled in the unparalleled persecution carried on against those who believed and obeyed the word of God, contrary to the dogmas of the Roman Catholic power. But it is after the action of this little horn in persecuting the saints that the kingdom is given to them. And, therefore, any theory which has the kingdom set up, and the saints inducted into it before the papal persecution, must be wrong.RDAC 50.1

    Bishop Newton, in tracing the parallel between the second and seventh chapters of Daniel, says:—RDAC 51.1

    “The legs of iron, and the fourth beast with great iron teeth, correspond exactly; and as iron breaketh in pieces all other metals, so the fourth beast devoured, and brake in pieces, and stamped the residue with the feet of it; and they were both, therefore, equally proper representatives of the fourth kingdom, or the Roman, which was stronger and more powerful than all the former kingdoms. The ten toes, too, and the ten horns, were alike fit emblems of the ten kingdoms, which arose out of the divisions of the Roman Empire.”RDAC 51.2

    In his Dissertation on Chapter 2, he says:—RDAC 51.3

    “The Roman Empire was at length divided into ten lesser kingdoms, answering to the ten toes of the image, as we shall see hereafter. These kingdoms retained much of the old Roman strength, and manifested it upon several occasions.”RDAC 51.4

    And, after giving his own enumeration of these ten kingdoms, he remarks upon the change or transition we have noticed:—RDAC 51.5

    “Not that there were constantly ten kingdoms; they were sometimes more and sometimes fewer; but, as Sir Isaac Newton says, ‘Whatever was their number afterward, they are still called the ten kings from their first number.’”RDAC 51.6

    Bishop Newton gives five different enumerations of the ten kingdoms, of different writers, to wit, Machiavel the historian, Mr. Mede, Bishop Lloyd, Sir Isaac Newton, and his own. And while the difference of these enumerations may raise a query in some minds, they are in truth but a confirmation of the view we advocate. And so he says:—RDAC 51.7

    “The few variations in these accounts must be ascribed to the great disorder and confusion of the times, one kingdom falling, and another rising, and scarce any subsisting for a long while together. As a learned writer [Danbuz on Revelation 13] remarks, ‘All these kingdoms were variously divided either by conquest or inheritance. However, as if that number of ten had been fatal in the Roman dominions, it hath been taken notice of upon particular occasions. As about a. d. one thousand two hundred and forty, by Everard, bishop of Saltsburg, in the diet of Ratisbon. At the time of the Reformation, they were also ten. So that the Roman Empire was divided into ten, first and last.’ Mr. Whiston, who published his Essay on the Revelation of St. John, in the year one thousand seven hundred and six, further observes ‘that as the number of the kingdoms, into which the Roman Empire in Europe, agreeably to the ancient prophecies, was originally divided a. d. four hundred and fifty-six, was exactly ten; so it is also very nearly returned again to the same condition; and at present is divided into ten grand or principal kingdoms or States. For, though there are many more great kingdoms or dominions in Europe besides, yet they are out of the bounds of the old Roman Empire, and so not so directly within our present inquiry.’”1Bishop Newton’s Dissertations on the Prophecies, Northampton, Mass., 1796. Dis. 13 and 14, pp. 165, 182, 183.RDAC 52.1

    And so it appears that, though writing at different times far apart from each other, and viewing them under different circumstances, while great changes were effected among these powers, they yet all speak of them as “the ten kingdoms.” And this marks the wonderful precision of the fulfillment of this prophecy, while transition and change was ever going on, as marked out by the prophecy, their identity as “these kings” is unmistakable. Indeed, there is no point on which historians and commentators better agree than this; the wonderful uniformity with which they call the divisions of the Roman Empire, represented by the feet and toes of the image of Daniel 2, “the ten kingdoms.”RDAC 52.2

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