söndag 16 februari 2014

Judgment, therefore, begins with the harlot, as in privileges the house of God. Part 3.




Part 3


The Two Babylons

Alexander Hislop
Chapter V
Section VI
The Sign of the Cross
There is yet one more symbol of the Romish worship to be noticed, and that is the sign of the cross. In the Papal system as is well known, the sign of the cross and the image of the cross are all in all. No prayer can be said, no worship engaged in, no step almost can be taken, without the frequent use of the sign of the cross. The cross is looked upon as the grand charm, as the great refuge in every season of danger, in every hour of temptation as the infallible preservative from all the powers of darkness. The cross is adored with all the homage due only to the Most High; and for any one to call it, in the hearing of a genuine Romanist, by the Scriptural term, ”the accursed tree,” is a mortal offence. To say that such superstitious feeling for the sign of the cross, such worship as Rome pays to a wooden or a metal cross, ever grew out of the saying of Paul, ”God forbid that I should glory, save in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ”–that is, in the doctrine of Christ crucified–is a mere absurdity, a shallow subterfuge and pretence. The magic virtues attributed to the so-called sign of the cross, the worship bestowed on it, never came from such a source. The same sign of the cross that Rome now worships was used in the Babylonian Mysteries, was applied by Paganism to the same magic purposes, was honoured with the same honours. That which is now called the Christian cross was originally no Christian emblem at all, but was the mystic Tau of the Chaldeans and Egyptians–the true original form of the letter T–the initial of the name of Tammuz–which, in Hebrew, radically the same as ancient Chaldee, was found on coins. That mystic Tau was marked in baptism on the foreheads of those initiated in the Mysteries, * and was used in every variety of way as a most sacred symbol.
* TERTULLIAN, De Proescript. Hoeret. The language of Tertullian implies that those who were initiated by baptism in the Mysteries were marked on the forehead in the same way, as his Christian countrymen in Africa, who had begun by this time to be marked in baptism with the sign of the cross.
To identify Tammuz with the sun it was joined sometimes to the circle of the sun; sometimes it was inserted in the circle. Whether the Maltese cross, which the Romish bishops append to their names as a symbol of their episcopal dignity, is the letter T, may be doubtful; but there seems no reason to doubt that that Maltese cross is an express symbol of the sun; for Layard found it as a sacred symbol in Nineveh in such a connection as led him to identify it with the sun. The mystic Tau, as the symbol of the great divinity, was called ”the sign of life”; it was used as an amulet over the heart; it was marked on the official garments of the priests, as on the official garments of the priests of Rome; it was borne by kings in their hand, as a token of their dignity or divinely-conferred authority. The Vestal virgins of Pagan Rome wore it suspended from their necklaces, as the nuns do now. The Egyptians did the same, and many of the barbarous nations with whom they had intercourse, as the Egyptian monuments bear witness. In reference to the adorning of some of these tribes, Wilkinson thus writes: ”The girdle was sometimes highly ornamented; men as well as women wore earrings; and they frequently had a small cross suspended to a necklace, or to the collar of their dress. The adoption of this last was not peculiar to them; it was also appended to, or figured upon, the robes of the Rot-n-no; and traces of it may be seen in the fancy ornaments of the Rebo, showing that it was already in use as early as the fifteenth century before the Christian era.” There is hardly a Pagan tribe where the cross has not been found. The cross was worshipped by the Pagan Celts long before the incarnation and death of Christ. ”It is a fact,” says Maurice, ”not less remarkable than well-attested, that the Druids in their groves were accustomed to select the most stately and beautiful tree as an emblem of the Deity they adored, and having cut the side branches, they affixed two of the largest of them to the highest part of the trunk, in such a manner that those branches extended on each side like the arms of a man, and, together with the body, presented the appearance of a HUGE CROSS, and on the bark, in several places, was also inscribed the letter Thau.” It was worshipped in Mexico for ages before the Roman Catholic missionaries set foot there, large stone crosses being erected, probably to the ”god of rain.” The cross thus widely worshipped, or regarded as a sacred emblem, was the unequivocal symbol of Bacchus, the Babylonian Messiah, for he was represented with a head-band covered with crosses. This symbol of the Babylonian god is reverenced at this day in all the wide wastes of Tartary, where Buddhism prevails, and the way in which it is represented among them forms a striking commentary on the language applied by Rome to the Cross. ”The cross,” says Colonel Wilford, in the Asiatic Researches, ”though not an object of worship among the Baud’has or Buddhists, is a favourite emblem and device among them. It is exactly the cross of the Manicheans, with leaves and flowers springing from it. This cross, putting forth leaves and flowers (and fruit also, as I am told), is called the divine tree, the tree of the gods, the tree of life and knowledge, and productive of whatever is good and desirable, and is placed in the terrestrial paradise.” Compare this with the language of Rome applied to the cross, and it will be seen how exact is the coincidence. In the Office of the Cross, it is called the ”Tree of life,” and the worshippers are taught thus to address it: ”Hail, O Cross, triumphal wood, true salvation of the world, among trees there is none like thee in leaf, flower, and bud…O Cross, our only hope, increase righteousness to the godly and pardon the offences of the guilty.” *
* The above was actually versified by the Romanisers in the Church of England, and published along with much besides from the same source, some years ago, in a volume entitled Devotions on the Passion. The London Record, of April, 1842, gave the following as a specimen of the ”Devotions” provided by these ”wolves in sheep’s clothing” for members of the Church of England:–
”O faithful cross, thou peerless tree,
No forest yields the like of thee,
Leaf, flower, and bud;
Sweet is the wood, and sweet the weight,
And sweet the nails that penetrate
Thee, thou sweet wood.”
Can any one, reading the gospel narrative of the crucifixion, possibly believe that that narrative of itself could ever germinate into such extravagance of ”leaf, flower, and bud,” as thus appears in this Roman Office? But when it is considered that the Buddhist, like the Babylonian cross, was the recognised emblem of Tammuz, who was known as the mistletoe branch, or ”All-heal,” then it is easy to see how the sacred Initial should be represented as covered with leaves, and how Rome, in adopting it, should call it the ”Medicine which preserves the healthful, heals the sick, and does what mere human power alone could never do.”
Now, this Pagan symbol seems first to have crept into the Christian Church in Egypt, and generally into Africa. A statement of Tertullian, about the middle of the third century, shows how much, by that time, the Church of Carthage was infected with the old leaven. Egypt especially, which was never thoroughly evangelised, appears to have taken the lead in bringing in this Pagan symbol. The first form of that which is called the Christian Cross, found on Christian monuments there, is the unequivocal Pagan Tau, or Egyptian ”Sign of life.” Let the reader peruse the following statement of Sir G. Wilkinson: ”A still more curious fact may be mentioned respecting this hieroglyphical character [the Tau], that the early Christians of Egypt adopted it in lieu of the cross, which was afterwards substituted for it, prefixing it to inscriptions in the same manner as the cross in later times. For, though Dr. Young had some scruples in believing the statement of Sir A. Edmonstone, that it holds that position in the sepulchres of the great Oasis, I can attest that such is the case, and that numerous inscriptions, headed by the Tau, are preserved to the present day on early Christian monuments.” The drift of this statement is evidently this, that in Egypt the earliest form of that which has since been called the cross, was no other than the ”Crux Ansata,” or ”Sign of life,” borne by Osiris and all the Egyptian gods; that the ansa or ”handle” was afterwards dispensed with, and that it became the simple Tau, or ordinary cross, as it appears at this day, and that the design of its first employment on the sepulchres, therefore, could have no reference to the crucifixion of the Nazarene, but was simply the result of the attachment to old and long-cherished Pagan symbols, which is always strong in those who, with the adoption of the Christian name and profession, are still, to a large extent, Pagan in heart and feeling. This, and this only, is the origin of the worship of the ”cross.”
This, no doubt, will appear all very strange and very incredible to those who have read Church history, as most have done to a large extent, even amongst Protestants, through Romish spectacles; and especially to those who call to mind the famous story told of the miraculous appearance of the cross to Constantine on the day before the decisive victory at the Milvian bridge, that decided the fortunes of avowed Paganism and nominal Christianity. That story, as commonly told, if true, would certainly give a Divine sanction to the reverence for the cross. But that story, when sifted to the bottom, according to the common version of it, will be found to be based on a delusion–a delusion, however, into which so good a man as Milner has allowed himself to fall. Milner’s account is as follows: ”Constantine, marching from France into Italy against Maxentius, in an expedition which was likely either to exalt or to ruin him, was oppressed with anxiety. Some god he thought needful to protect him; the God of the Christians he was most inclined to respect, but he wanted some satisfactory proof of His real existence and power, and he neither understood the means of acquiring this, nor could he be content with the atheistic indifference in which so many generals and heroes since his time have acquiesced. He prayed, he implored with such vehemence and importunity, and God left him not unanswered. While he was marching with his forces in the afternoon, the trophy of the cross appeared very luminous in the heavens, brighter than the sun, with this inscription, ‘Conquer by this.’ He and his soldiers were astonished at the sight; but he continued pondering on the event till night. And Christ appeared to him when asleep with the same sign of the cross, and directed him to make use of the symbol as his military ensign.” Such is the statement of Milner. Now, in regard to the ”trophy of the cross,” a few words will suffice to show that it is utterly unfounded. I do not think it necessary to dispute the fact of some miraculous sign having been given. There may, or there may not, have been on this occasion a ”dignus vindice nodus,” a crisis worthy of a Divine interposition. Whether, however, there was anything out of the ordinary course, I do not inquire. But this I say, on the supposition that Constantine in this matter acted in good faith, and that there actually was a miraculous appearance in the heavens, that it as not the sign of the cross that was seen, but quite a different thing, the name of Christ. That this was the case, we have at once the testimony of Lactantius, who was the tutor of Constantine’s son Crispus–the earliest author who gives any account of the matter, and the indisputable evidence of the standards of Constantine themselves, as handed down to us on medals struck at the time. The testimony of Lactantius is most decisive: ”Constantine was warned in a dream to make the celestial sign of God upon his solders’ shields, and so to join battle. He did as he was bid, and with the transverse letter X circumflecting the head of it, he marks Christ on their shields. Equipped with this sign, his army takes the sword.” Now, the letter X was just the initial of the name of Christ, being equivalent in Greek to CH. If, therefore, Constantine did as he was bid, when he made ”the celestial sign of God” in the form of ”the letter X,” it was that ”letter X,” as the symbol of ”Christ” and not the sign of the cross, which he saw in the heavens. When the Labarum, or far-famed standard of Constantine itself, properly so called, was made, we have the evidence of Ambrose, the well-known Bishop of Milan, that that standard was formed on the very principle contained in the statement of Lactantius–viz., simply to display the Redeemer’s name. He calls it ”Labarum, hoc est Christi sacratum nomine signum.”–”The Labarum, that is, the ensign consecrated by the NAME of Christ.” *
* Epistle of Ambrose to the Emperor Theodosius about the proposal to restore the Pagan altar of Victory in the Roman Senate. The subject of the Labarum has been much confused through ignorance of the meaning of the word. Bryant assumes (and I was myself formerly led away by the assumption) that it was applied to the standard bearing the crescent and the cross, but he produces no evidence for the assumption; and I am now satisfied that none can be produced. The name Labarum, which is generally believed to have come from the East, treated as an Oriental word, gives forth its meaning at once. It evidently comes from Lab, ”to vibrate,” or ”move to and fro,” and ar ”to be active.” Interpreted thus, Labarum signifies simply a banner or flag, ”waving to and fro” in the wind, and this entirely agrees with the language of Ambrose ”an ensign consecrated by the name of Christ,” which implies a banner.
There is not the slightest allusion to any cross–to anything but the simple name of Christ. While we have these testimonies of Lactantius and Ambrose, when we come to examine the standard of Constantine, we find the accounts of both authors fully borne out; we find that that standard, bearing on it these very words, ”Hoc signo victor eris,” ”In this sign thou shalt be a conqueror,” said to have been addressed from heaven to the emperor, has nothing at all in the shape of a cross, but ”the letter X.” In the Roman Catacombs, on a Christian monument to ”Sinphonia and her sons,” there is a distinct allusion to the story of the vision; but that allusion also shows that the X, and not the cross, was regarded as the ”heavenly sign.” The words at the head of the inscription are these: ”In Hoc Vinces [In this thou shalt overcome] X.” Nothing whatever but the X is here given as the ”Victorious Sign.” There are some examples, no doubt, of Constantine’s standard, in which there is a cross-bar, from which the flag is suspended, that contains that ”letter X”; and Eusebius, who wrote when superstition and apostacy were working, tries hard to make it appear that that cross-bar was the essential element in the ensign of Constantine. But this is obviously a mistake; that cross-bar was nothing new, nothing peculiar to Constantine’s standard. Tertullian shows that that cross-bar was found long before on the vexillum, the Roman Pagan standard, that carried a flag; and it was used simply for the purpose of displaying that flag. If, therefore, that cross-bar was the ”celestial sign,” it needed no voice from heaven to direct Constantine to make it; nor would the making or displaying of it have excited any particular attention on the part of those who saw it. We find no evidence at all that the famous legend, ”In this overcome,” has any reference to this cross-bar; but we find evidence the most decisive that that legend does refer to the X. Now, that that X was not intended as the sign of the cross, but as the initial of Christ’s name, is manifest from this, that the Greek P, equivalent to our R, is inserted in the middle of it, making by their union CHR. The standard of Constantine, then, was just the name of Christ. Whether the device came from earth or from heaven–whether it was suggested by human wisdom or Divine, supposing that Constantine was sincere in his Christian profession, nothing more was implied in it than a literal embodiment of the sentiment of the Psalmist, ”In the name of the Lord will we display our banners.” To display that name on the standards of Imperial Rome was a thing absolutely new; and the sight of that name, there can be little doubt, nerved the Christian soldiers in Constantine’s army with more than usual fire to fight and conquer at the Milvian bridge.
In the above remarks I have gone on the supposition that Constantine acted in good faith as a Christian. His good faith, however, has been questioned; and I am not without my suspicions that the X may have been intended to have one meaning to the Christians and another to the Pagans. It is certain that the X was the symbol of the god Ham in Egypt, and as such was exhibited on the breast of his image. Whichever view be taken, however, of Constantine’s sincerity, the supposed Divine warrant for reverencing the sign of the cross entirely falls to the ground. In regard to the X, there is no doubt that, by the Christians who knew nothing of secret plots or devices, it was generally taken, as Lactantius declares, as equivalent to the name of ”Christ.” In this view, therefore, it had no very great attractions for the Pagans, who, even in worshipping Horus, had always been accustomed to make use of the mystic tau or cross, as the ”sign of life,” or the magical charm that secured all that was good, and warded off everything that was evil. When, therefore, multitudes of the Pagans, on the conversion of Constantine, flocked into the Church, like the semi-Pagans of Egypt, they brought along with them their predilection for the old symbol. The consequence was, that in no great length of time, as apostacy proceeded, the X which in itself was not an unnatural symbol of Christ, the true Messiah, and which had once been regarded as such, was allowed to go entirely into disuse, and the Tau, the sign of the cross, the indisputable sign of Tammuz, the false Messiah, was everywhere substituted in its stead. Thus, by the ”sign of the cross,” Christ has been crucified anew by those who profess to be His disciples. Now, if these things be matter of historic fact, who can wonder that, in the Romish Church, ”the sign of the cross” has always and everywhere been seen to be such an instrument of rank superstition and delusion?
There is more, much more, in the rites and ceremonies of Rome that might be brought to elucidate our subject. But the above may suffice. *
* If the above remarks be well founded, surely it cannot be right that this sign of the cross, or emblem of Tammuz, should be used in Christian baptism. At the period of the Revolution, a Royal Commission, appointed to inquire into the Rites and Ceremonies of the Church of England, numbering among its members eight or ten bishops, strongly recommended that the use of the cross, as tending to superstition, should be laid aside. If such a recommendation was given then, and that by such authority as members of the Church of England must respect, how much ought that recommendation to be enforced by the new light which Providence has cast on the subject!


The Two Babylons
Alexander Hislop
Chapter VI
Section I
The Sovereign Pontiff
The gift of the ministry is one of the greatest gifts which Christ has bestowed upon the world. It is in reference to this that the Psalmist, predicting the ascension of Christ, thus loftily speaks of its blessed results: ”Thou hast ascended up on high: Thou hast led captivity captive; Thou hast received gifts for men, even for the rebellious, that the Lord God might dwell among them” (Eph 4:8-11). The Church of Rome, at its first planting, had the divinely bestowed gift of a Scriptural ministry and government; and then ”its faith was spoken of throughout the whole world”; its works of righteousness were both rich and abundant. But, in an evil hour, the Babylonian element was admitted into its ministry, and thenceforth, that which had been intended as a blessing, was converted into a curse. Since then, instead of sanctifying men, it has only been the means of demoralising them, and making them ”twofold more the children of hell” than they would have been had they been left simply to themselves.
If there be any who imagine that there is some occult and mysterious virtue in an apostolic succession that comes through the Papacy, let them seriously consider the real character of the Pope’s own orders, and of those of his bishops and clergy. From the Pope downwards, all can be shown to be now radically Babylonian. The College of Cardinals, with the Pope at its head, is just the counterpart of the Pagan College of Pontiffs, with its ”Pontifex Maximus,” or ”Sovereign Pontiff,” which had existed in Rome from the earliest times, and which is known to have been framed on the model of the grand original Council of Pontiffs at Babylon. The Pope now pretends to supremacy in the Church as the successor of Peter, to whom it is alleged that our Lord exclusively committed the keys of the kingdom of heaven. But here is the important fact that, till the Pope was invested with the title, which for a thousand years had had attached to it the power of the keys of Janus and Cybele, * no such claim to pre-eminence, or anything approaching to it, was ever publicly made on his part, on the ground of his being the possessor of the keys bestowed on Peter.
* It was only in the second century before the Christian era that the worship of Cybele, under that name, was introduced into Rome; but the same goddess, under the name of Cardea, with the ”power of the key,” was worshipped in Rome, along with Janus, ages before. OVID’s Fasti
Very early, indeed, did the bishop of Rome show a proud and ambitious spirit; but, for the first three centuries, their claim for superior honour was founded simply on the dignity of their see, as being that of the imperial city, the capital of the Roman world. When, however, the seat of empire was removed to the East, and Constantinople threatened to eclipse Rome, some new ground for maintaining the dignity of the Bishop of Rome must be sought. That new ground was found, when, about 378, the Pope fell heir to the keys that were the symbols of two well-known Pagan divinities at Rome. Janus bore a key, and Cybele bore a key; and these are the two keys that the Pope emblazons on his arms as the ensigns of his spiritual authority. How the Pope came to be regarded as wielding the power of these keys will appear in the sequel; but that he did, in the popular apprehension, become entitled to that power at the period referred to is certain. Now, when he had come, in the estimation of the Pagans, to occupy the place of the representatives of Janus and Cybele, and therefore to be entitled to bear their keys, the Pope saw that if he could only get it believed among the Christians that Peter alone had the power of the keys, and that he was Peter’s successor, then the sight of these keys would keep up the delusion, and thus, though the temporal dignity of Rome as a city should decay, his own dignity as the Bishop of Rome would be more firmly established than ever. On this policy it is evident he acted. Some time was allowed to pass away, and then, when the secret working of the Mystery of iniquity had prepared the way for it, for the first time did the Pope publicly assert his pre-eminence, as founded on the keys given to Peter. About 378 was he raised to the position which gave him, in Pagan estimation, the power of the keys referred to. In 432, and not before, did he publicly lay claim to the possession of Peter’s keys. This, surely, is a striking coincidence. Does the reader ask how it was possible that men could give credit to such a baseless assumption? The words of Scripture, in regard to this very subject, give a very solemn but satisfactory answer (2 Thess 2:10,11): ”Because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved…For this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie.” Few lies could be more gross; but, in course of time, it came to be widely believed; and now, as the statue of Jupiter is worshipped at Rome as the veritable image of Peter, so the keys of Janus and Cybele have for ages been devoutly believed to represent the keys of the same apostle.
While nothing but judicial infatuation can account for the credulity of the Christians in regarding these keys as emblems of an exclusive power given by Christ to the Pope through Peter, it is not difficult to see how the Pagans would rally round the Pope all the more readily when they heard him found his power on the possession of Peter’s keys. The keys that the Pope bore were the keys of a ”Peter” well known to the Pagans initiated in the Chaldean Mysteries. That Peter the apostle was ever Bishop of Rome has been proved again and again to be an arrant fable. That he ever even set foot in Rome is at the best highly doubtful. His visit to that city rests on no better authority than that of a writer at the end of the second century or beginning of the third–viz., the author of the work called The Clementines, who gravely tells us that on the occasion of his visit, finding Simon Magus there, the apostle challenged him to give proof of his miraculous or magical powers, whereupon the sorcerer flew up into the air, and Peter brought him down in such hast that his leg was broken. All historians of repute have at once rejected this story of the apostolic encounter with the magician as being destitute of all contemporary evidence; but as the visit of Peter to Rome rests on the same authority, it must stand or fall along with it, or, at least, it must be admitted to be extremely doubtful. But, while this is the case with Peter the Christian, it can be shown to be by no means doubtful that before the Christian era, and downwards, there was a ”Peter” at Rome, who occupied the highest place in the Pagan priesthood. The priest who explained the Mysteries to the initiated was sometimes called by a Greek term, the Hierophant; but in primitive Chaldee, the real language of the Mysteries, his title, as pronounced without the points, was ”Peter”–i.e., ”the interpreter.” As the revealer of that which was hidden, nothing was more natural than that, while opening up the esoteric doctrine of the Mysteries, he should be decorated with the keys of the two divinities whose mysteries he unfolded. *
* The Turkish Mufties, or ”interpreters” of the Koran, derive that name from the very same verb as that from which comes Miftah, a key.
Thus we may see how the keys of Janus and Cybele would come to be known as the keys of Peter, the ”interpreter” of the Mysteries. Yea, we have the strongest evidence that, in countries far removed from one another, and far distant from Rome, these keys were known by initiated Pagans not merely as the ”keys of Peter,” but as the keys of a Peter identified with Rome. In the Eleusinian Mysteries at Athens, when the candidates for initiation were instructed in the secret doctrine of Paganism, the explanation of that doctrine was read to them out of a book called by ordinary writers the ”Book Petroma”; that is, as we are told, a book formed of stone. But this is evidently just a play upon words, according to the usual spirit of Paganism, intended to amuse the vulgar. The nature of the case, and the history of the Mysteries, alike show that this book could be none other than the ”Book Pet-Roma”; that is, the ”Book of the Grand Interpreter,” in other words, of Hermes Trismegistus, the great ”Interpreter of the Gods.” In Egypt, from which Athens derived its religion, the books of Hermes were regarded as the divine fountain of all true knowledge of the Mysteries. * In Egypt, therefore, Hermes was looked up to in this very character of Grand Interpreter, or ”Peter-Roma.” ** In Athens, Hermes, as its well known, occupied precisely the same place, *** and, of course, in the sacred language, must have been known by the same title.
* The following are the authorities for the statement in the text: ”Jamblichus says that Hermes [i.e., the Egyptian] was the god of all celestial knowledge, which, being communicated by him to his priests, authorised them to inscribe their commentaries with the name of Hermes” (WILKINSON). Again, according to the fabulous accounts of the Egyptian Mercury, he was reported…to have taught men the proper mode of approaching the Deity with prayers and sacrifice (WILKINSON). Hermes Trismegistus seems to have been regarded as a new incarnation of Thoth, and possessed of higher honours. The principal books of this Hermes, according to Clemens of Alexandria, were treated by the Egyptians with the most profound respect, and carried in their religious processions (CLEM., ALEX., Strom.).
** In Egypt, ”Petr” was used in this very sense. See BUNSEN, Hieroglyph, where Ptr is said to signify ”to show.” The interpreter was called Hierophantes, which has the very idea of ”showing” in it.
*** The Athenian or Grecian Hermes is celebrated as ”The source of invention…He bestows, too, mathesis on souls, by unfolding the will of the father of Jupiter, and this he accomplishes as the angel or messenger of Jupiter…He is the guardian of disciplines, because the invention of geometry, reasoning, and language is referred to this god. He presides, therefore, over every species of erudition, leading us to an intelligible essence from this mortal abode, governing the different herds of souls” (PROCLUS in Commentary on First Alcibiades, TAYLOR’S Orphic Hymns). The Grecian Hermes was so essentially the revealer or interpreter of divine things, that Hermeneutes, an interpreter, was currently said to come from his name (HYGINUS).
The priest, therefore, that in the name of Hermes explained the Mysteries, must have been decked not only with the keys of Peter, but with the keys of ”Peter-Roma.” Here, then, the famous ”Book of Stone” begins to appear in a new light, and not only so, but to shed new light on one of the darkest and most puzzling passages of Papal history. It has always been a matter of amazement to candid historical inquirers how it could ever have come to pass that the name of Peter should be associated with Rome in the way in which it is found from the fourth century downwards–how so many in different countries had been led to believe that Peter, who was an ”apostle of the circumcision,” had apostatised from his Divine commission, and become bishop of a Gentile Church, and that he should be the spiritual ruler in Rome, when no satisfactory evidence could be found for his ever having been in Rome at all. But the book of ”Peter-Roma” accounts for what otherwise is entirely inexplicable. The existence of such a title was too valuable to be overlooked by the Papacy; and, according to its usual policy, it was sure, if it had the opportunity, to turn it to the account of its own aggrandisement. And that opportunity it had. When the Pope came, as he did, into intimate connection with the Pagan priesthood; when they came at last, as we shall see they did, under his control, what more natural than to seek not only to reconcile Paganism and Christianity, but to make it appear that the Pagan ”Peter-Roma,” with his keys, meant ”Peter of Rome,” and that that ”Peter of Rome” was the very apostle to whom the Lord Jesus Christ gave the ”keys of the kingdom of heaven”? Hence, from the mere jingle of words, persons and things essentially different were confounded; and Paganism and Christianity jumbled together, that the towering ambition of a wicked priest might be gratified; and so, to the blinded Christians of the apostacy, the Pope was the representative of Peter the apostle, while to the initiated pagans, he was only the representative of Peter, the interpreter of their well known Mysteries. Thus was the Pope the express counterpart of ”Janus, the double-faced.” Oh! what an emphasis of meaning in the Scriptural expression, as applied to the Papacy, ”The Mystery of Iniquity”!
The reader will now be prepared to understand how it is that the Pope’s Grand Council of State, which assists him in the government of the Church, comes to be called the College of Cardinals. The term Cardinal is derived from Cardo, a hinge. Janus, whose key the Pope bears, was the god of doors and hinges, and was called Patulcius, and Clusius ”the opener and the shutter.” This had a blasphemous meaning, for he was worshipped at Rome as the grand mediator. Whatever important business was in hand, whatever deity was to be invoked, an invocation first of all must be addressed to Janus, who was recognised as the ”God of gods,” in whose mysterious divinity the characters of father and son were combined, and without that no prayer could be heard–the ”door of heaven” could not be opened. It was this same god whose worship prevailed so exceedingly in Asia Minor at the time when our Lord sent, by his servant John, the seven Apocalyptic messages to the churches established in that region. And, therefore, in one of these messages we find Him tacitly rebuking the profane ascription of His own peculiar dignity to that divinity, and asserting His exclusive claim to the prerogative usually attributed to His rival. Thus, Revelation 3:7 ”And to the angel of the church in Philadelphia write: These things saith he that is holy, he that is true, he that hath the key of David, he that openeth, and no man shutteth; and shutteth, and no man openeth.” Now, to this Janus, as Mediator, worshipped in Asia Minor, and equally, from very early times, in Rome, belonged the government of the world; and, ”all power in heaven, in earth, and the sea,” according to Pagan ideas, was vested in him. In this character he was said to have ”jus vertendi cardinis”–the ”power of turning the hinge”–of opening the doors of heaven, or of opening or shutting the gates of peace or war upon earth. The Pope, therefore, when he set up as the High-priest of Janus, assumed also the ”jus vertendi cardinis,” ”the power of turning the hinge,”–of opening and shutting in the blasphemous Pagan sense. Slowly and cautiously at first was this power asserted; but the foundation being laid, steadily, century after century, was the grand superstructure of priestly power erected upon it. The Pagans, who saw what strides, under Papal directions, Christianity, as professed in Rome, was making towards Paganism, were more than content to recognise the Pope as possessing this power; they gladly encouraged him to rise, step by step, to the full height of the blasphemous pretensions befitting the representative of Janus–pretensions which, as all men know, are now, by the unanimous consent of Western Apostate Christendom, recognised as inherent in the office of the Bishop of Rome. To enable the Pope, however, to rise to the full plenitude of power which he now asserts, the co-operation of others was needed. When his power increased, when his dominion extended, and especially after he became a temporal sovereign, the key of Janus became too heavy for his single hand–he needed some to share with him the power of the ”hinge.” Hence his privy councillors, his high functionaries of state, who were associated with him in the government of the Church and the world, got the now well known title of ”Cardinals”–the priests of the ”hinge.” This title had been previously borne by the high officials of the Roman Emperor, who, as ”Pontifex Maximus,” had been himself the representative of Janus, and who delegated his powers to servants of his own. Even in the reign of Theodosius, the Christian Emperor of Rome, the title of Cardinal was borne by his Prime Minister. But now both the name and the power implied in the name have long since disappeared from all civil functionaries of temporal sovereigns; and those only who aid the Pope in wielding the key of Janus–in opening and shutting–are known by the title of Cardinals, or priests of the ”hinge.”
I have said that the Pope became the representative of Janus, who, it is evident, was none other than the Babylonian Messiah. If the reader only considers the blasphemous assumptions of the Papacy, he will see how exactly it has copied from its original. In the countries where the Babylonian system was most thoroughly developed, we find the Sovereign Pontiff of the Babylonian god invested with the very attributes now ascribed to the Pope. Is the Pope called ”God upon earth,” the ”Vice-God,” and ”Vicar of Jesus Christ”? The King in Egypt, who was Sovereign Pontiff, * was, says Wilkinson, regarded with the highest reverence as ”THE REPRESENTATIVE OF THE DIVINITY ON EARTH.”
* Wilkinson shows that the king had the right of enacting laws, and of managing all the affairs of religion and the State, which proves him to have been Sovereign Pontiff.
Is the Pope ”Infallible,” and does the Church of Rome, in consequence, boast that it has always been ”unchanged and unchangeable”? The same was the case with the Chaldean Pontiff, and the system over which he presided. The Sovereign Pontiff, says the writer just quoted, was believed to be ”INCAPABLE OF ERROR,” * and, in consequence, there was ”the greatest respect for the sanctity of old edicts”; and hence, no doubt, also the origin of the custom that ”the laws of the Medes and Persians could not be altered.” Does the Pope receive the adorations of the Cardinals? The king of Babylon, as Sovereign Pontiff, was adored in like manner. **
* WILKINSON’S Egyptians. ”The Infallibility” was a natural result of the popular belief in regard to the relation in which the Sovereign stood to the gods: for, says Diodorus Siculus, speaking of Egypt, the king was believed to be ”a partaker of the divine nature.”
** From the statement of LAYARD (Nineveh and its Remains and Nineveh and Babylon), it appears that as the king of Egypt was the ”Head of the religion and the state,” so was the king of Assyria, which included Babylon. Then we have evidence that he was worshipped. The sacred images are represented as adoring him, which could not have been the case if his own subjects did not pay their homage in that way. Then the adoration claimed by Alexander the Great evidently came from this source. It was directly in imitation of the adoration paid to the Persian kings that he required such homage. From Xenophon we have evidence that this Persian custom came from Babylon. It was when Cyrus had entered Babylon that the Persians, for the first time, testified their homage to him by adoration; for, ”before this,” says Xenophon (Cyropoed), ”none of the Persians had given adoration to Cyrus.”
Are kings and ambassadors required to kiss the Pope’s slipper? This, too, is copied from the same pattern; for, says Professor Gaussen, quoting Strabo and Herodotus, ”the kings of Chaldea wore on their feet slippers which the kings they conquered used to kiss.” In kind, is the Pope addressed by the title of ”Your Holiness”? So also was the Pagan Pontiff of Rome. The title seems to have been common to all Pontiffs. Symmachus, the last Pagan representative of the Roman Emperor, as Sovereign Pontiff, addressing one of his colleagues or fellow-pontiffs, on a step of promotion he was about to obtain, says, ”I hear that YOUR HOLINESS (sanctitatem tuam) is to be called out by the sacred letters.”
Peter’s keys have now been restored to their rightful owner. Peter’s chair must also go along with them. That far-famed chair came from the very same quarter as the cross-keys. The very same reason that led the Pope to assume the Chaldean keys naturally led him also to take possession of the vacant chair of the Pagan Pontifex Maximus. As the Pontifex, by virtue of his office, had been the Hierophant, or Interpreter of the Mysteries, his chair of office was as well entitled to be called ”Peter’s” chair as the Pagan keys to be called ”the keys of Peter”; and so it was called accordingly. The real pedigree of the far-famed chair of Peter will appear from the following fact: ”The Romans had,” says Bower, ”as they thought, till the year 1662, a pregnant proof, not only of Peter’s erecting their chair, but of his sitting in it himself; for, till that year, the very chair on which they believed, or would make others believe, he had sat, was shown and exposed to public adoration on the 18th of January, the festival of the said chair. But while it was cleaning, in order to set it up in some conspicuous place of the Vatican, the twelve labours of Hercules unluckily appeared on it!” and so it had to be laid aside. The partisans of the Papacy were not a little disconcerted by this discovery; but they tried to put the best face on the matter they could. ”Our worship,” said Giacomo Bartolini, in his Sacred Antiquities of Rome, while relating the circumstances of the discovery, ”Our worship, however, was not misplaced, since it was not to the wood we paid it, but to the prince of the apostles, St. Peter,” that had been supposed to sit in it. Whatever the reader may think of this apology for chair-worship, he will surely at least perceive, taking this in connection with what we have already seen, that the hoary fable of Peter’s chair is fairly exploded. In modern times, Rome seems to have been rather unfortunate in regard to Peter’s chair; for, even after that which bore the twelve labours of Hercules had been condemned and cast aside, as unfit to bear the light that the Reformation had poured upon the darkness of the Holy See, that which was chosen to replace it was destined to reveal still more ludicrously the barefaced impostures of the Papacy. The former chair was borrowed from the Pagans; the next appears to have been purloined from the Mussulmans; for when the French soldiers under General Bonaparte took possession of Rome in 1795, they found on the back of it, in Arabic, this well known sentence of the Koran, ”There is no God but God, and Mahomet is His Prophet.”
The Pope has not merely a chair to sit in; but he has a chair to be carried in, in pomp and state, on men’s shoulders, when he pays a visit to St. Peter’s, or any of the churches of Rome. Thus does an eye-witness describe such a pageant on the Lord’s Day, in the headquarters of Papal idolatry: ”The drums were heard beating without. The guns of the soldiers rung on the stone pavement of the house of God, as, at the bidding of their officer, they grounded, shouldered, and presented arms. How unlike the Sabbath–how unlike religion–how unlike the suitable preparation to receive a minister of the meek and lowly Jesus! Now, moving slowly up, between the two armed lines of soldiers, appeared a long procession of ecclesiastics, bishops, canons, and cardinals, preceding the Roman pontiff, who was borne on a gilded chair, clad in vestments resplendent as the sun. His bearers were twelve men clad in crimson, being immediately preceded by several persons carrying a cross, his mitre, his triple crown, and other insignia of his office. As he was borne along on the shoulders of men, amid the gaping crowds, his head was shaded or canopied by two immense fans, made of peacocks’ feathers, which were borne by two attendants.” Thus it is with the Sovereign Pontiff of Rome at this day; only that, frequently, over and above being shaded by the fan, which is just the ”Mystic fan of Bacchus,” his chair of state is also covered with a regular canopy. Now, look back through the vista of three thousand years, and see how the Sovereign Pontiff of Egypt used to pay a visit to the temple of his god. ”Having reached the precincts of the temple,” says Wilkinson, ”the guards and royal attendants selected to be the representatives of the whole army entered the courts…Military bands played the favourite airs of the country; and the numerous standards of the different regiments, the banners floating on the wind, the bright lustre of arms, the immense concourse of people, and the imposing majesty of the lofty towers of the propylaea, decked with their bright-coloured flags, streaming above the cornice, presented a scene seldom, we may say, equalled on any occasion, in any country. The most striking feature of this pompous ceremony was the brilliant cortege of the monarch, who was either borne in his chair of state by the principal officers of state, under a rich canopy, or walked on foot, overshadowed with rich flabella and fans of waving plumes.”
So much for Peter’s chair and Peter’s keys. Now Janus, whose key the Pope usurped with that of his wife or mother Cybele, was also Dagon. Janus, the two-headed god, ”who had lived in two worlds,” was the Babylonian divinity as an incarnation of Noah. Dagon, the fish-god, represented that deity as a manifestation of the same patriarch who had lived so long in the waters of the deluge. As the Pope bears the key of Janus, so he wears the mitre of Dagon. The excavations of Nineveh have put this beyond all possibility of doubt. The Papal mitre is entirely different from the mitre of Aaron and the Jewish high priests. That mitre was a turban. The two-horned mitre, which the Pope wears, when he sits on the high altar at Rome and receives the adoration of the Cardinals, is the very mitre worn by Dagon, the fish-god of the Philistines and Babylonians. There were two ways in which Dagon was anciently represented. The one was when he was depicted as half-man half-fish; the upper part being entirely human, the under part ending in the tail of a fish. The other was, when, to use the words of Layard, ”the head of the fish formed a mitre above that of the man, while its scaly, fan-like tail fell as a cloak behind, leaving the human limbs and feet exposed.” Of Dagon in this form Layard gives a representation in his last work; and no one who examines his mitre, and compares it with the Pope’s as given in Elliot’s Horoe, can doubt for a moment that from that, and no other source, has the pontifical mitre been derived. The gaping jaws of the fish surmounting the head of the man at Nineveh are the unmistakable counterpart of the horns of the Pope’s mitre at Rome. Thus was it in the East, at least five hundred years before the Christian era. The same seems to have been the case also in Egypt; for Wilkinson, speaking of a fish of the species of Siluris, says ”that one of the Genii of the Egyptian Pantheon appears under a human form, with the head of this fish.” In the West, at a later period, we have evidence that the Pagans had detached the fish-head mitre from the body of the fish, and used that mitre alone to adorn the head of the great Mediatorial god; for on several Maltese Pagan coins that god, with the well-known attributes of Osiris, is represented with nothing of the fish save the mitre on his head; very nearly in the same form as the mitre of the Pope, or of a Papal bishop at this day. Even in China, the same practice of wearing the fish-head mitre had evidently once prevailed; for the very counterpart of the Papal mitre, as worn by the Chinese Emperor, has subsisted to modern times. ”Is it known,” asks a well-read author of the present day, in a private communication to me, ”that the Emperor of China, in all ages, even to the present year, as high priest of the nation, once a year prays for and blesses the whole nation, having his priestly robes on and his mitre on his head, the same, the very same, as that worn by the Roman Pontiff for near 1200 years? Such is the fact.” The reader must bear in mind, that even in Japan, still farther distant from Babel than China itself, one of the divinities is represented with the same symbol of might as prevailed in Assyria–even the bull’s horns, and is called ”The ox-headed Prince of Heaven.” If the symbol of Nimrod, as Kronos, ”The Horned one,” is thus found in Japan, it cannot be surprising that the symbol of Dagon should be found in China.
But there is another symbol of the Pope’s power which must not be overlooked, and that is the pontifical crosier. Whence came the crosier? The answer to this, in the first place, is, that the Pope stole it from the Roman augur. The classical reader may remember, that when the Roman augurs consulted the heavens, or took prognostics from the aspect of the sky, there was a certain instrument with which it was indispensable that they should be equipped. That instrument with which they described the portion of the heavens on which their observations were to be made, was curved at the one end, and was called ”lituus.” Now, so manifestly was the ”lituus,” or crooked rod of the Roman augurs, identical with the pontifical crosier, that Roman Catholic writers themselves, writing in the Dark Ages, at a time when disguise was thought unnecessary, did not hesitate to use the term ”lituus” as a synonym for the crosier. Thus a Papal writer describes a certain Pope or Papal bishop as ”mitra lituoque decorus,” adorned with the mitre and the augur’s rod, meaning thereby that he was ”adorned with the mitre and the crosier.” But this lituus, or divining-rod, of the Roman augurs, was, as is well known, borrowed from the Etruscans, who, again, had derived it, along with their religion, from the Assyrians. As the Roman augur was distinguished by his crooked rod, so the Chaldean soothsayers and priests, in the performance of their magic rites, were generally equipped with a crook or crosier. This magic crook can be traced up directly to the first king of Babylon, that is, Nimrod, who, as stated by Berosus, was the first that bore the title of a Shepherd-king. In Hebrew, or the Chaldee of the days of Abraham, ”Nimrod the Shepherd,” is just Nimrod ”He-Roe”; and from this title of the ”mighty hunter before the Lord,” have no doubt been derived, both the name of Hero itself, and all that Hero-worship which has since overspread the world. Certain it is that Nimrod’s deified successors have generally been represented with the crook or crosier. This was the case in Babylon and Nineveh, as the extant monuments show. In Layard, it may be seen in a more ornate form, and nearly resembling the papal crosier as borne at this day. * This was the case in Egypt, after the Babylonian power was established there, as the statues of Osiris with his crosier bear witness, ** Osiris himself being frequently represented as a crosier with an eye above it.
* Nineveh and Babylon. Layard seems to think the instrument referred to, which is borne by the king, ”attired as high priest in his sacrificial robes,” a sickle; but any one who attentively examines it will see that it is a crosier, adorned with studs, as is commonly the case even now with the Roman crosiers, only, that instead of being held erect, it is held downwards.
** The well known name Pharaoh, the title of the Pontiff-kings of Egypt, is just the Egyptian form of the Hebrew He-Roe. Pharaoh in Genesis, without the points, is ”Phe-Roe.” Phe is the Egyptian definite article. It was not shepherd-kings that the Egyptians abhorred, but Roi-Tzan, ”shepherds of cattle” (Gen 46:34). Without the article Roe, a ”shepherd,” is manifestly the original of the French Roi, a king, whence the adjective royal; and from Ro, which signifies to ”act the shepherd,” which is frequently pronounced Reg–(with Sh, which signifies ”He who is,” or ”who does,” affixed)–comes Regah, ”He who acts the shepherd,” whence the Latin Rex, and Regal.
This is the case among the Negroes of Africa, whose god, called the Fetiche, is represented in the form of a crosier, as is evident from the following words of Hurd: ”They place Fetiches before their doors, and these titular deities are made in the form of grapples or hooks, which we generally make use of to shake our fruit trees.” This is the case at this hour in Thibet, where the Lamas or Theros bear, as stated by the Jesuit Huc, a crosier, as the ensign of their office. This is the case even in the far-distant Japan, where, in a description of the idols of the great temple of Miaco, the spiritual capital, we find this statement: ”Their heads are adorned with rays of glory, and some of them have shepherds’ crooks in their hands, pointing out that they are the guardians of mankind against all the machinations of evil spirits.” The crosier of the Pope, then, which he bears as an emblem of his office, as the great shepherd of the sheep, is neither more nor less than the augur’s crooked staff, or magic rod of the priests of Nimrod.
Now, what say the worshippers of the apostolic succession to all this? What think they now of their vaunted orders as derived from Peter of Rome? Surely they have much reason to be proud of them. But what, I further ask, would even the old Pagan priests say who left the stage of time while the martyrs were still battling against their gods, and, rather than symbolise with them, ”loved not their lives unto the death,” if they were to see the present aspect of the so-called Church of European Christendom? What would Belshazzar himself say, if it were possible for him to ”revisit the glimpses of the moon,” and enter St. Peter’s at Rome, and see the Pope in his pontificals, in all his pomp and glory? Surely he would conclude that he had only entered one of his own well known temples, and that all things continued as they were at Babylon, on that memorable night, when he saw with astonished eyes the handwriting on the wall: ”Mene, mene, tekel, Upharsin.”


The Two Babylons
Alexander Hislop
Chapter VI
Section II
Priests, Monks, and Nuns
If the head be corrupt, so also must be the membersIf the Pope be essentially Pagan, what else can be the character of his clergy? If they derive their orders from a radically corrupted source, these orders must partake of the corruption of the source from which they flow. This might be inferred independently of any special evidence; but the evidence in regard to the Pagan character of the Pope’s clergy is as complete as that in regard to the Pope himself. In whatever light the subject is viewed, this will be very apparent.
There is a direct contrast between the character of the ministers of Christ, and that of the Papal priesthood. When Christ commissioned His servants, it was ”to feed His sheep, to feed His lambs,” and that with the Word of God, which testifies of Himself, and contains the words of eternal life. When the Pope ordains his clergy, he takes them bound to prohibit, except in special circumstances, the reading of the Word of God ”in the vulgar tongue,” that is, in a language which the people can understand. He gives them, indeed, a commission; and what is it? It is couched in these astounding words: ”Receive the power of sacrificing for the living and the dead.” What blasphemy could be worse than this? What more derogatory to the one sacrifice of Christ, whereby ”He hath perfected for ever them that are sanctified”? (Heb 10:14) This is the real distinguishing function of the popish priesthood. At the remembrance that this power, in these very words, had been conferred on him, when ordained to the priesthood, Luther used, in after years, with a shudder, to express his astonishment that ”the earth had not opened its mouth and swallowed up both him who uttered these words, and him to whom they were addressed.” The sacrifice which the papal priesthood are empowered to offer, as a ”true propitiatory sacrifice” for the sins of the living and the dead, is just the ”unbloody sacrifice” of the mass, which was offered up in Babylon long before it was ever heard of in Rome.
Now, while Semiramis, the real original of the Chaldean Queen of Heaven, to whom the ”unbloody sacrifice” of the mass was first offered, was in her own person, as we have already seen, the very paragon of impurity, she at the same time affected the greatest favour for that kind of sanctity which looks down with contempt on God’s holy ordinance of marriage. The Mysteries over which she presided were scenes of the rankest pollution; and yet the higher orders of the priesthood were bound to a life of celibacy, as a life of peculiar and pre-eminent holiness. Strange though it may seem, yet the voice of antiquity assigns to that abandoned queen the invention of clerical celibacy, and that in the most stringent form. In some countries, as in Egypt, human nature asserted its rights, and though the general system of Babylon was retained, the yoke of celibacy was abolished, and the priesthood were permitted to marry. But every scholar knows that when the worship of Cybele, the Babylonian goddess, was introduced into Pagan Rome, it was introduced in its primitive form, with its celibate clergy. When the Pope appropriated to himself so much that was peculiar to the worship of that goddess, from the very same source, also, he introduced into the priesthood under his authority the binding obligation of celibacy. The introduction of such a principle into the Christian Church had been distinctly predicted as one grand mark of the apostacy, when men should ”depart from the faith, and speaking lies in hypocrisy, having their consciences seared with a hot iron, should forbid to marry.” The effects of its introduction were most disastrous. The records of all nations where priestly celibacy has been introduced have proved that, instead of ministering to the purity of those condemned to it, it has only plunged them in the deepest pollution. The history of Thibet, and China, and Japan, where the Babylonian institute of priestly celibacy has prevailed from time immemorial, bears testimony to the abominations that have flowed from it. The excesses committed by the celibate priests of Bacchus in Pagan Rome in their secret Mysteries, were such that the Senate felt called upon to expel them from the bounds of the Roman republic. In Papal Rome the same abominations have flowed from priestly celibacy, in connection with the corrupt and corrupting system of the confessional, insomuch that all men who have examined the subject have been compelled to admire the amazing significance of the name divinely bestowed on it, both in a literal and figurative sense, ”Babylon the Great, THE MOTHER OF HARLOTS AND ABOMINATIONS OF THE EARTH.” *
* Revelation 17:5. The Rev. M. H. Seymour shows that in 1836 the whole number of births in Rome was 4373, while of these no fewer than 3160 were foundlings! What enormous profligacy does this reveal!–”Moral Results of the Romish System,” in Evenings with Romanists.
Out of a thousand facts of a similar kind, let one only be adduced, vouched for by the distinguished Roman Catholic historian De Thou. When Pope Paul V meditated the suppression of the licensed brothels in the ”Holy City,” the Roman Senate petitioned against his carrying his design into effect, on the ground that the existence of such places was the only means of hindering the priests from seducing their wives and daughters!!
These celibate priests have all a certain mark set upon them at their ordination; and that is the clerical tonsure. The tonsure is the first part of the ceremony of ordination; and it is held to be a most important element in connection with the orders of the Romish clergy. When, after long contendings, the Picts were at last brought to submit to the Bishop of Rome, the acceptance of this tonsure as the tonsure of St. Peter on the part of the clergy was the visible symbol of that submission. Naitan, the Pictish king, having assembled the nobles of his court and the pastors of his church, thus addressed them: ”I recommend all the clergy of my kingdom to receive the tonsure.” Then, without delay, as Bede informs us, this important revolution was accomplished by royal authority. He sent agents into every province, and caused all the ministers and monks to receive the circular tonsure, according to the Roman fashion, and thus to submit to Peter, ”the most blessed Prince of the apostles.” ”It was the mark,” says Merle D’Aubigne, ”that Popes stamped not on the forehead, but on the crown. A royal proclamation, and a few clips of the scissors, placed the Scotch, like a flock of sheep, beneath the crook of the shepherd of the Tiber.” Now, as Rome set so much importance on this tonsure, let it be asked what was the meaning of it? It was the visible inauguration of those who submitted to it as the priests of Bacchus. This tonsure cannot have the slightest pretence to Christian authority. It was indeed the ”tonsure of Peter,” but not of the Peter of Galilee, but of the Chaldean ”Peter” of the Mysteries. He was a tonsured priest, for so was the god whose Mysteries he revealed. Centuries before the Christian era, thus spoke Herodotus of the Babylonian tonsure: ”The Arabians acknowledge no other gods than Bacchus and Urania [i.e., the Queen of Heaven], and they say that their hair was cut in the same manner as Bacchus’ is cut; now, they cut it in a circular form, shaving it around the temples.” What, then, could have led to this tonsure of Bacchus? Everything in his history was mystically or hieroglyphically represented, and that in such a way as none but the initiated could understand. One of the things that occupied the most important place in the Mysteries was the mutilation to which he was subjected when he was put to death. In memory of that, he was lamented with bitter weeping every year, as ”Rosh-Gheza,” ”the mutilated Prince.” But ”Rosh-Gheza” also signified the ”clipped or shaved head.” Therefore he was himself represented either with the one or the other form of tonsure; and his priests, for the same reason, at their ordination had their heads either clipped or shaven. Over all the world, where the traces of the Chaldean system are found, this tonsure or shaving of the head is always found along with it. The priests of Osiris, the Egyptian Bacchus, were always distinguished by the shaving of their heads. In Pagan Rome, in India, and even in China, the distinguishing mark of the Babylonian priesthood was the shaven head. Thus Gautama Buddha, who lived at least 540 years before Christ, when setting up the sect of Buddhism in India which spread to the remotest regions of the East, first shaved his own head, in obedience, as he pretended, to a Divine command, and then set to work to get others to imitate his example. One of the very titles by which he was called was that of the ”Shaved-head.” ”The shaved-head,” says one of the Purans, ”that he might perform the orders of Vishnu, formed a number of disciples, and of shaved-heads like himself.” The high antiquity of this tonsure may be seen from the enactment in the Mosaic law against it. The Jewish priests were expressly forbidden to make any baldness upon their heads (Lev 21:5), which sufficiently shows that, even so early as the time of Moses, the ”shaved-head” had been already introduced. In the Church of Rome the heads of the ordinary priests are only clipped, the heads of the monks or regular clergy are shaven, but both alike, at their consecration, receive the circular tonsure, thereby identifying them, beyond all possibility of doubt, with Bacchus, ”the mutilated Prince.” *
* It has been already shown that among the Chaldeans the one term ”Zero” signified at once ”a circle” and ”the seed.” ”Suro,” ”the seed,” in India, as we have seen, was the sun-divinity incarnate. When that seed was represented in human form, to identify him with the sun, he was represented with the circle, the well known emblem of the sun’s annual course, on some part of his person. Thus our own god Thor was represented with a blazing circle on his breast. (WILSON’S Parsi Religion) In Persia and Assyria the circle was represented sometimes on the breast, sometimes round the waist, and sometimes in the hand of the sun-divinity. (BRYANT and LAYARD’S Nineveh and Babylon) In India it is represented at the tip of the finger. (MOOR’S Pantheon, ”Vishnu”) Hence the circle became the emblem of Tammuz born again, or ”the seed.” The circular tonsure of Bacchus was doubtless intended to point him out as ”Zero,” or ”the seed,” the grand deliverer. And the circle of light around the head of the so-called pictures of Christ was evidently just a different form of the very same thing, and borrowed from the very same source. The ceremony of tonsure, says Maurice, referring to the practice of that ceremony in India, ”was an old practice of the priests of Mithra, who in their tonsures imitated the solar disk.” (Antiquities) As the sun-god was the great lamented god, and had his hair cut in a circular form, and the priests who lamented him had their hair cut in a similar manner, so in different countries those who lamented the dead and cut off their hair in honour of them, cut it in a circular form. There were traces of that in Greece, as appears from the Electra of Sophocles; and Herodotus particularly refers to it as practised among the Scythians when giving an account of a royal funeral among that people. ”The body,” says he, ”is enclosed in wax. They then place it on a carriage, and remove it to another district, where the persons who receive it, like the Royal Scythians, cut off a part of their ear, shave their heads in a circular form,” &c. (Hist.) Now, while the Pope, as the grand representative of the false Messiah, received the circular tonsure himself, so all his priests to identify them with the same system are required to submit to the same circular tonsure, to mark them in their measure and their own sphere as representatives of that same false Messiah.
Now, if the priests of Rome take away the key of knowledge, and lock up the Bible from the people; if they are ordained to offer the Chaldean sacrifice in honour of the Pagan Queen of Heaven; if they are bound by the Chaldean law of celibacy, that plunges them in profligacy; if, in short, they are all marked at their consecration with the distinguishing mark of the priests of the Chaldean Bacchus, what right, what possible right, can they have to be called ministers of Christ?
But Rome has not only her ordinary secular clergy, as they are called; she has also, as every one knows, other religious orders of a different kind. She has innumerable armies of monks and nuns all engaged in her service. Where can there be shown the least warrant for such an institution in Scripture? In the religion of the Babylonian Messiah their institution was from the earliest times. In that system there were monks and nuns in abundance. In Thibet and Japan, where the Chaldean system was early introduced, monasteries are still to be found, and with the same disastrous results to morals as in Papal Europe. *
* There are some, and Protestants, too, who begin to speak of what they call the benefits of monasteries in rude times, as if they were hurtful only when they fall into ”decrepitude and corruption”! Enforced celibacy, which lies at the foundation of the monastic system, is of the very essence of the Apostacy, which is divinely characterised as the ”Mystery of Iniquity.” Let such Protestants read 1 Timothy 4:1-3, and surely they will never speak more of the abominations of the monasteries as coming only from their ”decrepitude”!
In Scandinavia, the priestesses of Freya, who were generally kings’ daughters, whose duty it was to watch the sacred fire, and who were bound to perpetual virginity, were just an order of nuns. In Athens there were virgins maintained at the public expense, who were strictly bound to single life. In Pagan Rome, the Vestal virgins, who had the same duty to perform as the priestesses of Freya, occupied a similar position. Even in Peru, during the reign of the Incas, the same system prevailed, and showed so remarkable an analogy, as to indicate that the Vestals of Rome, the nuns of the Papacy, and the Holy Virgins of Peru, must have sprung from a common origin. Thus does Prescott refer to the Peruvian nunneries: ”Another singular analogy with Roman Catholic institutions is presented by the virgins of the sun, the elect, as they were called. These were young maidens dedicated to the service of the deity, who at a tender age were taken from their homes, and introduced into convents, where they were placed under the care of certain elderly matrons, mamaconas, * who had grown grey within their walls. It was their duty to watch over the sacred fire obtained at the festival of Raymi. From the moment they entered the establishment they were cut off from all communication with the world, even with their own family and friends…Woe to the unhappy maiden who was detected in an intrigue! by the stern law of the Incas she was to be buried alive.”
* Mamacona, ”Mother Priestess,” is almost pure Hebrew, being derived from Am a ”mother,” and Cohn, ”a priest,” only with the feminine termination. Our own Mamma, as well as that of Peru, is just the Hebrew Am reduplicated. It is singular that the usual style and title of the Lady Abbess in Ireland is the ”Reverend Mother.” The term Nun itself is a Chaldean word. Ninus, the son in Chaldee is either Nin or Non. Now, the feminine of Non, a ”son,” is Nonna, a ”daughter,” which is just the Popish canonical name for a ”Nun,” and Nonnus, in like manner, was in early times the designation for a monk in the East. (GIESELER)
This was precisely the fate of the Roman Vestal who was proved to have violated her vow. Neither in Peru, however, nor in Pagan Rome was the obligation to virginity so stringent as in the Papacy. It was not perpetual, and therefore not so exceedingly demoralising. After a time, the nuns might be delivered from their confinement, and marry; from all hopes of which they are absolutely cut off in the Church of Rome. In all these cases, however, it is plain that the principle on which these institutions were founded was originally the same. ”One is astonished,” adds Prescott, ”to find so close a resemblance between the institutions of the American Indian, the ancient Roman, and the modern Catholic.”
Prescott finds it difficult to account for this resemblance; but the one little sentence from the prophet Jeremiah, which was quoted at the commencement of this inquiry, accounts for it completely: ”Babylon hath been a golden cup in the Lord’s hand, that hath made ALL THE EARTH drunken” (Jer 51:7). This is the Rosetta stone that has helped already to bring to light so much of the secret iniquity of the Papacy, and that is destined still further to decipher the dark mysteries of every system of heathen mythology that either has been or that is. The statement of this text can be proved to be a literal fact. It can be proved that the idolatry of the whole earth is one, that the sacred language of all nations is radically Chaldean–that the GREAT GODS of every country and clime are called by Babylonian names–and that all the Paganisms of the human race are only a wicked and deliberate, but yet most instructive corruption of the primeval gospel first preached in Eden, and through Noah, afterwards conveyed to all mankind. The system, first concocted in Babylon, and thence conveyed to the ends of the earth, has been modified and diluted in different ages and countries. In Papal Rome only is it now found nearly pure and entire. But yet, amid all the seeming variety of heathenism, there is an astonishing oneness and identity, bearing testimony to the truth of God’s Word. The overthrow of all idolatry cannot now be distant. But before the idols of the heathens shall be finally cast to the moles and to the bats, I am persuaded that they will be made to fall down and worship ”the Lord the king,” to bear testimony to His glorious truth, and with one loud and united acclaim, ascribe salvation, and glory, and honour, and power unto Him that sitteth upon the throne, and to the Lamb, for ever and ever.


The Two Babylons
Alexander Hislop
Chapter VII
The Two Developments Historically and Prophetically Considered
Hitherto we have considered the history of the Two Babylons chiefly in detail. Now we are to view them as organised systems. The idolatrous system of the ancient Babylon assumed different phases in different periods of its history. In the prophetic description of the modern Babylon, there is evidently also a development of different powers at different times. Do these two developments bear any typical relation to each other? Yes, they do. When we bring the religious history of the ancient Babylonian Paganism to bear on the prophetic symbols that shadow forth the organised working of idolatry in Rome, it will be found that it casts as much light on this view of the subject as on that which has hitherto engaged our attention. The powers of iniquity at work in the modern Babylon are specifically described in chapters 12 and 13 of the Revelation; and they are as follows:–I. The Great Red Dragon; II. The Beast that comes up out of the sea; III. The Beast that ascendeth out of the earth; and IV. The Image of the Beast. In all these respects it will be found, on inquiry, that, in regard to succession and order of development, the Paganism of the Old Testament Babylon was the exact type of the Paganism of the new.
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Section I
The Great Red Dragon
This formidable enemy of the truth is particularly described in Revelation 12:3–”And there appeared another wonder in heaven, a great red dragon.” It is admitted on all hands that this is the first grand enemy that in Gospel times assaulted the Christian Church. If the terms in which it is described, and the deeds attributed to it, are considered, it will be found that there is a great analogy between it and the first enemy of all, that appeared against the ancient Church of God soon after the Flood. The term dragon, according to the associations currently connected with it, is somewhat apt to mislead the reader, by recalling to his mind the fabulous dragons of the Dark Ages, equipped with wings. At the time this Divine description was given, the term dragon had no such meaning among either profane or sacred writers. ”The dragon of the Greeks,” says Pausanias, ”was only a large snake”; and the context shows that this is the very case here; for what in the third verse is called a ”dragon,” in the fourteenth is simply described as a ”serpent.” Then the word rendered ”Red” properly means ”Fiery”; so that the ”Red Dragon” signifies the ”Fiery Serpent” or ”Serpent of Fire.” Exactly so does it appear to have been in the first form of idolatry, that, under the patronage of Nimrod, appeared in the ancient world. The ”Serpent of Fire” in the plains of Shinar seems to have been the grand object of worship. There is the strongest evidence that apostacy among the sons of Noah began in fire-worship, and that in connection with the symbol of the serpent.
We have seen already, on different occasions, that fire was worshipped as the enlightener and the purifier. Now, it was thus at the very beginning; for Nimrod is singled out by the voice of antiquity as commencing this fire-worship. The identity of Nimrod and Ninus has already been proved; and under the name of Ninus, also, he is represented as originating the same practice. In a fragment of Apollodorus it is said that ”Ninus taught the Assyrians to worship fire.” The sun, as the great source of light and heat, was worshipped under the name of Baal. Now, the fact that the sun, under that name, was worshipped in the earliest ages of the world, shows the audacious character of these first beginnings of apostacy. Men have spoken as if the worship of the sun and of the heavenly bodies was a very excusable thing, into which the human race might very readily and very innocently fall. But how stands the fact? According to the primitive language of mankind, the sun was called ”Shemesh”–that is, ”the Servant”–that name, no doubt, being divinely given, to keep the world in mind of the great truth that, however glorious was the orb of day, it was, after all, the appointed Minister of the bounty of the great unseen Creator to His creatures upon earth. Men knew this, and yet with the full knowledge of it, they put the servant in the place of the Master; and called the sun Baal–that is, the Lord–and worshipped him accordingly. What a meaning, then, in the saying of Paul, that, ”when they knew God, they glorified Him not as God”; but ”changed the truth of God into a lie, and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator, who is God over all, blessed for ever.” The beginning, then, of sun-worship, and of the worship of the host of heaven, was a sin against the light–a presumptuous, heaven-daring sin. As the sun in the heavens was the great object of worship, so fire was worshipped as its earthly representative. To this primeval fire-worship Vitruvius alludes when he says that ”men were first formed into states and communities by meeting around fires.” And this is exactly in conformity with what we have already seen in regard to Phoroneus, whom we have identified with Nimrod, that while he was said to be the ”inventor of fire,” he was also regarded as the first that ”gathered mankind into communities.”
Along with the sun, as the great fire-god, and, in due time, identified with him, was the serpent worshipped. ”In the mythology of the primitive world,” says Owen, ”the serpent is universally the symbol of the sun.” In Egypt, one of the commonest symbols of the sun, or sun-god, is a disc with a serpent around it. The original reason of that identification seems just to have been that, as the sun was the great enlightener of the physical world, so the serpent was held to have been the great enlightener of the spiritual, by giving mankind the ”knowledge of good and evil.” This, of course, implies tremendous depravity on the part of the ring-leaders in such a system, considering the period when it began; but such appears to have been the real meaning of the identification. At all events, we have evidence, both Scriptural and profane, for the fact, that the worship of the serpent began side by side with the worship of fire and the sun. The inspired statement of Paul seems decisive on the subject. It was, he says, ”when men knew God, but glorified Him not as God,” that they changed the glory of God, not only into an image made like to corruptible man, but into the likeness of ”creeping things”–that is, of serpents (Rom 1:23). With this profane history exactly coincides. Of profane writers, Sanchuniathon, the Phoenician, who is believed to have lived about the time of Joshua, says–”Thoth first attributed something of the divine nature to the serpent and the serpent tribe, in which he was followed by the Phoenicians and Egyptians. For this animal was esteemed by him to be the most spiritual of all the reptiles, and of a FIERY nature, inasmuch as it exhibits an incredible celerity, moving by its spirit, without either hands or feet…Moreover, it is long-lived, and has the quality of RENEWING ITS YOUTH…as Thoth has laid down in the sacred books; upon which accounts this animal is introduced in the sacred rites and Mysteries.”
Now, Thoth, it will be remembered, was the counsellor of Thamus, that is, Nimrod. From this statement, then, we are led to the conclusion that serpent-worship was a part of the primeval apostacy of Nimrod. The ”FIERY NATURE” of the serpent, alluded to in the above extract, is continually celebrated by the heathen poets. Thus Virgil, ”availing himself,” as the author of Pompeii remarks, ”of the divine nature attributed to serpents,” describes the sacred serpent that came from the tomb of Anchises, when his son Aeneas had been sacrificing before it, in such terms as illustrate at once the language of the Phoenician, and the ”Fiery Serpent” of the passage before us:–
”Scarce had he finished, when, with speckled pride,
A serpent from the tomb began to glide;
His hugy bulk on seven high volumes rolled,
Blue was his breadth of back, but streaked with scaly gold.
Thus, riding on his curls, he seemed to pass
A rolling fire along, and singe the grass.”
It is not wonderful, then, the fire-worship and serpent-worship should be conjoined. The serpent, also, as ”renewing its youth” every year, was plausibly represented to those who wished an excuse for idolatry as a meet emblem of the sun, the great regenerator, who every year regenerates and renews the face of nature, and who, when deified, was worshipped as the grand Regenerator of the souls of men.
In the chapter under consideration, the ”great fiery serpent” is represented with all the emblems of royalty. All its heads are encircled with ”crowns or diadems”; and so in Egypt, the serpent of fire, or serpent of the sun, in Greek was called the Basilisk, that is, the ”royal serpent,” to identify it with Moloch, which name, while it recalls the ideas both of fire and blood, properly signifies ”the King.” The Basilisk was always, among the Egyptians, and among many nations besides, regarded as ”the very type of majesty and dominion.” As such, its image was worn affixed to the head-dress of the Egyptian monarchs; and it was not lawful for any one else to wear it. The sun identified with this serpent was called ”P’ouro,” which signifies at one ”the Fire” and ”the King,” and from this very name the epithet ”Purros,” the ”Fiery,” is given to the ”Great seven-crowned serpent” of our text. *
* The word Purros in the text does not exclude the idea of ”Red,” for the sun-god was painted red to identify him with Moloch, at once the god of fire and god of blood.–(WILKINSON). The primary leading idea, however, is that of Fire.
Thus was the Sun, the Great Fire-god, identified with the Serpent. But he had also a human representative, and that was Tammuz, for whom the daughters of Israel lamented, in other words Nimrod. We have already seen the identity of Nimrod and Zoroaster. Now, Zoroaster was not only the head of the Chaldean Mysteries, but, as all admit, the head of the fire-worshippers.(seenote below) The title given to Nimrod, as the first of the Babylonian kings, by Berosus, indicates the same thing. That title is Alorus, that is, ”the god of fire.” As Nimrod, ”the god of fire,” was Molk-Gheber, or, ”the Mighty king,” inasmuch as he was the first who was called Moloch, or King, and the first who began to be ”mighty” (Gheber) on the earth, we see at once how it was that the ”passing through the fire to Moloch” originated, and how the god of fire among the Romans came to be called ”Mulkiber.” *
* Commonly spelled Mulciber (OVID, Art. Am.); but the Roman c was hard. From the epithet ”Gheber,” the Parsees, or fire-worshippers of India, are still called ”Guebres.”
It was only after his death, however, that he appears to have been deified. Then, retrospectively, he was worshipped as the child of the Sun, or the Sun incarnate. In his own life-time, however, he set up no higher pretensions than that of being Bol-Khan, or Priest of Baal, from which the other name of the Roman fire-god Vulcan is evidently derived. Everything in the history of Vulcan exactly agrees with that of Nimrod. Vulcan was ”the most ugly and deformed” of all the gods. Nimrod, over all the world, is represented with the features and complexion of a negro. Though Vulcan was so ugly, that when he sought a wife, ”all the beautiful goddesses rejected him with horror”; yet ”Destiny, the irrevocable, interposed, and pronounced the decree, by which [Venus] the most beautiful of the goddesses, was united to the most unsightly of the gods.” So, in spite of the black and Cushite features of Nimrod, he had for his queen Semiramis, the most beautiful of women. The wife of Vulcan was noted for her infidelities and licentiousness; the wife of Nimrod was the very same. * Vulcan was the head and chief of the Cyclops, that is, ”the kings of flame.” **
* Nimrod, as universal king, was Khuk-hold, ”King of the world.” As such, the emblem of his power was the bull’s horns. Hence the origin of the Cuckhold’s horns.
** Kuclops, from Khuk, ”king,” and Lohb, ”flame.” The image of the great god was represented with three eyes–one in the forehead; hence the story of the Cyclops with the one eye in the forehead.
Nimrod was the head of the fire-worshippers. Vulcan was the forger of the thunderbolts by which such havoc was made among the enemies of the gods. Ninus, or Nimrod, in his wars with the king of Bactria, seems to have carried on the conflict in a similar way. From Arnobius we learn, that when the Assyrians under Ninus made war against the Bactrians, the warfare was waged not only by the sword and bodily strength, but by magic and by means derived from the secret instructions of the Chaldeans. When it is known that the historical Cyclops are, by the historian Castor, traced up to the very time of Saturn or Belus, the first king of Babylon, and when we learn that Jupiter (who was worshipped in the very same character as Ninus, ”the child”), when fighting against the Titans, ”received from the Cyclops aid” by means of ”dazzling lightnings and thunders,” we may have some pretty clear idea of the magic arts derived from the Chaldean Mysteries, which Ninus employed against the Bactrian king. There is evidence that, down to a late period, the priests of the Chaldean Mysteries knew the composition of the formidable Greek fire, which burned under water, and the secret of which has been lost; and there can be little doubt that Nimrod, in erecting his power, availed himself of such or similar scientific secrets, which he and his associates alone possessed.
In these, and other respects yet to be noticed, there is an exact coincidence between Vulcan, the god of fire of the Romans, and Nimrod, the fire-god of Babylon. In the case of the classic Vulcan, it is only in his character of the fire-god as a physical agent that he is popularly represented. But it was in his spiritual aspects, in cleansing and regenerating the souls of men, that the fire-worship told most effectually on the world. The power, the popularity, and skill of Nimrod, as well as the seductive nature of the system itself, enabled him to spread the delusive doctrine far and wide, as he was represented under the well-known name of Phaethon, (see note below) as on the point of ”setting the whole world on fire,” or (without the poetical metaphor) of involving all mankind in the guilt of fire-worship. The extraordinary prevalence of the worship of the fire-god in the early ages of the world, is proved by legends found over all the earth, and by facts in almost every clime. Thus, in Mexico, the natives relate, that in primeval times, just after the first age, the world was burnt up with fire. As their history, like the Egyptian, was written in Hieroglyphics, it is plain that this must be symbolically understood. In India, they have a legend to the very same effect, though somewhat varied in its form. The Brahmins say that, in a very remote period of the past, one of the gods shone with such insufferable splendour, ”inflicting distress on the universe by his effulgent beams, brighter than a thousand worlds,” * that, unless another more potent god had interposed and cut off his head, the result would have been most disastrous.
* SKANDA PURAN, and PADMA PURAN, apud KENNEDY’S Hindoo Mythology, p. 275. In the myth, this divinity is represented as the fifth head of Brahma; but as this head is represented as having gained the knowledge that made him so insufferably proud by perusing the Vedas produced by the other four heads of Brahma, that shows that he must have been regarded as having a distinct individuality.
In the Druidic Triads of the old British Bards, there is distinct reference to the same event. They say that in primeval times a ”tempest of fire arose, which split the earth asunder to the great deep,” from which none escaped but ”the select company shut up together in the enclosure with the strong door,” with the great ”patriarch distinguished for his integrity,” that is evidently with Shem, the leader of the faithful–who preserved their ”integrity” when so many made shipwreck of faith and a good conscience. These stories all point to one and the same period, and they show how powerful had been this form of apostacy. The Papal purgatory and the fires of St. John’s Eve, which we have already considered, and many other fables or practices still extant, are just so many relics of the same ancient superstition.
It will be observed, however, that the Great Red Dragon, or Great Fiery Serpent, is represented as standing before the Woman with the crown of twelve stars, that is, the true Church of God, ”To devour her child as soon as it should be born.” Now, this is in exact accordance with the character of the Great Head of the system of fire-worship. Nimrod, as the representative of the devouring fire to which human victims, and especially children, were offered in sacrifice, was regarded as the great child-devourer. Though, at his first deification, he was set up himself as Ninus, or the child, yet, as the first of mankind that was deified, he was, of course, the actual father of all the Babylonian gods; and, therefore, in that character he was afterwards universally regarded. *
* Phaethon, though the child of the sun, is also called the Father of the gods. (LACTANTIUS, De Falsa Religione) In Egypt, too, Vulcan was the Father of the gods. (AMMIANUS MARCELLINUS)
As the Father of the gods, he was, as we have seen, called Kronos; and every one knows that the classical story of Kronos was just this, that, ”he devoured his sons as soon as they were born.” Such is the analogy between type and antitype. This legend has a further and deeper meaning; but, as applied to Nimrod, or ”The Horned One,” it just refers to the fact, that, as the representative of Moloch or Baal, infants were the most acceptable offerings at his altar. We have ample and melancholy evidence on this subject from the records of antiquity. ”The Phenicians,” says Eusebius, ”every year sacrificed their beloved and only-begotten children to Kronos or Saturn, and the Rhodians also often did the same.” Diodorus Siculus states that the Carthaginians, on one occasion, when besieged by the Sicilians, and sore pressed, in order to rectify, as they supposed, their error in having somewhat departed from the ancient custom of Carthage, in this respect, hastily ”chose out two hundred of the noblest of their children, and publicly sacrificed them” to this god. There is reason to believe that the same practice obtained in our own land in the times of the Druids. We know that they offered human sacrifices to their bloody gods. We have evidence that they made ”their children pass through the fire to Moloch,” and that makes it highly probable that they also offered them in sacrifice; for, from Jeremiah 32:35, compared with Jeremiah 19:5, we find that these two things were parts of one and the same system. The god whom the Druids worshipped was Baal, as the blazing Baal-fires show, and the last-cited passage proves that children were offered in sacrifice to Baal. When ”the fruit of the body” was thus offered, it was ”for the sin of the soul.” And it was a principle of the Mosaic law, a principle no doubt derived from the patriarchal faith, that the priest must partake of whatever was offered as a sin-offering (Num 18:9,10). Hence, the priests of Nimrod or Baal were necessarily required to eat of the human sacrifices; and thus it has come to pass that ”Cahna-Bal,” * the ”Priest of Baal,” is the established word in our own tongue for a devourer of human flesh. **
* The word Cahna is the emphatic form of Cahn. Cahn is ”a priest,” Cahna is ”the priest.”
** From the historian Castor (in Armenian translation of EUSEBIUS) we learn that it was under Bel, or Belus, that is Baal, that the Cyclops lived; and the Scholiast on Aeschylus states that these Cyclops were the brethren of Kronos, who was also Bel or Bal, as we have elsewhere seen. The eye in their forehead shows that originally this name was a name of the great god; for that eye in India and Greece is found the characteristic of the supreme divinity. The Cyclops, then, had been representatives of that God–in other words, priests, and priests of Bel or Bal. Now, we find that the Cyclops were well-known as cannibals, Referre ritus Cyclopum, ”to bring back the rites of the Cyclops,” meaning to revive the practice of eating human flesh. (OVID, Metam.)
Now, the ancient traditions relate that the apostates who joined in the rebellion of Nimrod made war upon the faithful among the sons of Noah. Power and numbers were on the side of the fire-worshippers. But on the side of Shem and the faithful was the mighty power of God’s Spirit. Therefore many were convinced of their sin, arrested in their evil career; and victory, as we have already seen, declared for the saints. The power of Nimrod came to an end, * and with that, for a time, the worship of the sun, and the fiery serpent associated with it.
* The wars of the giants against heaven, referred to in ancient heathen writers, had primary reference to this war against the saints; for men cannot make war upon God except by attacking the people of God. The ancient writer Eupolemus, as quoted by Eusebius (Praeparatio Evang.), states, that the builders of the tower of Babel were these giants; which statement amounts nearly to the same thing as the conclusion to which we have already come, for we have seen that the ”mighty ones” of Nimrod were ”the giants” of antiquity. Epiphanius records that Nimrod was a ringleader among these giants, and that ”conspiracy, sedition, and tyranny were carried on under him.” From the very necessity of the case, the faithful must have suffered most, as being most opposed to his ambitious and sacrilegious schemes. That Nimrod’s reign terminated in some very signal catastrophe, we have seen abundant reason already to conclude. The following statement of Syncellus confirms the conclusions to which we have already come as to the nature of that catastrophe; referring to the arresting of the tower-building scheme, Syncellus (Chronographia) proceeds thus: ”But Nimrod would still obstinately stay (when most of the other tower-builders were dispersed), and reside upon the spot; nor could he be withdrawn from the tower, still having the command over no contemptible body of men. Upon this, we are informed, that the tower, being beat upon by violent winds, gave way, and by the just judgment of God, crushed him to pieces.” Though this could not be literally true, for the tower stood for many ages, yet there is a considerable amount of tradition to the effect that the tower in which Nimrod gloried was overthrown by wind, which gives reason to suspect that this story, when properly understood, had a real meaning in it. Take it figuratively, and remembering that the same word which signifies the wind signifies also the Spirit of God, it becomes highly probable that the meaning is, that his lofty and ambitious scheme, by which, in Scriptural language, he was seeking to ”mount up to heaven,” and ”set his nest among the stars,” was overthrown for a time by the Spirit of God, as we have already concluded, and that, in that overthrow he himself perished.
The case was exactly as stated here in regard to the antitype (Rev 12:9): ”The great dragon,” or fiery serpent, was ”cast out of heaven to the earth, and his angels were cast out with him”; that is, the Head of the fire-worship, and all his associates and underlings, were cast down from the power and glory to which they had been raised. Then was the time when the whole gods of the classic Pantheon of Greece were fain to flee and hide themselves from the wrath of their adversaries. Then it was, that, in India, Indra, the king of the gods, Surya, the god of the sun, Agni, the god of fire, and all the rabble rout of the Hindu Olympus, were driven from heaven, wandered over the earth, or hid themselves, in forests, disconsolate, and ready to ”perish of hunger.” Then it was that Phaethon, while driving the chariot of the sun, when on the point of setting the world on fire, was smitten by the Supreme God, and cast headlong to the earth, while his sisters, the daughters of the sun, inconsolably lamented him, as, ”the women wept for Tammuz.” Then it was, as the reader must be prepared to see, that Vulcan, or Molk-Gheber, the classic ”god of fire,” was so ignominiously hurled down from heaven, as he himself relates in Homer, speaking of the wrath of the King of Heaven, which in this instance must mean God Most High:–
”I felt his matchless might,
Hurled headlong downwards from the ethereal height;
Tossed all the day in rapid circles round,
Nor, till the sun descended, touched the ground.
Breathless I fell, in giddy motion lost.
The Sinthians raised me on the Lemnian coast.”
The lines, in which Milton refers to this same downfall, though he gives it another application, still more beautifully describe the greatness of the overthrow:–
”In Ausonian land
Men called him Mulciber; and how he fell
From heaven, they fabled. Thrown by angry Jove
Sheer o’er the crystal battlements; from morn
To noon he fell, from noon to dewy eve,
A summer’s day; and, with the setting sun,
Dropped from the zenith, like a falling star.
On Lemnos, the Aegean isle.”
Paradise Lost
These words very strikingly show the tremendous fall of Molk-Gheber, or Nimrod, ”the Mighty King,” when ”suddenly he was cast down from the height of his power, and was deprived at once of his kingdom and his life.” *
* The Greek poets speak of two downfalls of Vulcan. In the one case he was cast down by Jupiter, in the other by Juno. When Jupiter cast him down, it was for rebellion; when Juno did so, one of the reasons specially singled out for doing so was his ”malformation,” that is, his ugliness. (HOMER’S Hymn to Apollo) How exactly does this agree with the story of Nimrod: First he was personally cast down, when, by Divine authority, he was slain. Then he was cast down, in effigy, by Juno, when his image was degraded from the arms of the Queen of Heaven, to make way for the fairer child.
Now, to this overthrow there is very manifest allusion in the prophetic apostrophe of Isaiah to the king of Babylon, exulting over his approaching downfall: ”How art thou fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning”! The Babylonian king pretended to be a representative of Nimrod or Phaethon; and the prophet, in these words, informs him, that, as certainly as the god in whom he gloried had been cast down from his high estate, so certainly should he. In the classic story, Phaethon is said to have been consumed with lightning (and, as we shall see by-and-by, Aesculapius also died the same death); but the lightning is a mere metaphor for the wrath of God, under which his life and his kingdom had come to an end. When the history is examined, and the figure stripped off, it turns out, as we have already seen, that he was judicially slain with the sword. *
* Though Orpheus was commonly represented as having been torn in pieces, he too was fabled to have been killed by lightning. (PAUSANIAS, Boeotica) When Zoroaster died, he also is said in the myth to have perished by lightning (SUIDAS); and therefore, in accordance with that myth, he is represented as charging his countrymen to preserve not his body, but his ”ashes.” The death by lightning, however, is evidently a mere figure.
Such is the language of the prophecy, and so exactly does it correspond with the character, and deeds, and fate of the ancient type. How does it suit the antitype? Could the power of Pagan Imperial Rome–that power that first persecuted the Church of Christ, that stood by its soldiers around the tomb of the Son of God Himself, to devour Him, if it had been possible, when He should be brought forth, as the first-begotten from the dead, * to rule all nations–be represented by a ”Fiery Serpent”?
* The birth of the Man-child, as given above, is different from that usually given: but let the reader consider if the view which I have taken does not meet all the requirements of the case. I think there will be but few who will assent to the opinion of Mr. Elliot, which in substance amounts to this, that the Man-child was Constantine the Great, and that when Christianity, in his person sat down on the throne of Imperial Rome, that was the fulfilment of the saying, that the child brought forth by the woman, amid such pangs of travail, was ”caught up to God and His throne.” When Constantine came to the empire, the Church indeed, as foretold in Daniel 11:34, ”was holpen with a little help”; but that was all. The Christianity of Constantine was but of a very doubtful kind, the Pagans seeing nothing in it to hinder but that when he died, he should be enrolled among their gods. (EUTROPIUS) But even though it had been better, the description of the woman’s child is far too high for Constantine, or any Christian emperor that succeeded him on the imperial throne. ”The Man-child, born to rule all nations with a rod of iron,” is unequivocally Christ (see Psalms 2:9; Rev 19:15). True believers, as one with Him in a subordinate sense, share in that honour (Rev 2:27); but to Christ alone, properly, does that prerogative belong; and I think it must be evident that it is His birth that is here referred to. But those who have contended for this view have done injustice to their cause by representing this passage as referring to His literal birth in Bethlehem. When Christ was born in Bethlehem, no doubt Herod endeavoured to cut Him off, and Herod was a subject of the Roman Empire. But it was not from any respect to Caesar that he did so, but simply from fear of danger to his own dignity as King of Judea. So little did Caesar sympathise with the slaughter of the children of Bethlehem, that it is recorded that Augustus, on hearing of it, remarked that it was ”better to be Herod’s hog than to be his child.” (MACROBIUS, Saturnalia) Then, even if it were admitted that Herod’s bloody attempt to cut off the infant Saviour was symbolised by the Roman dragon, ”standing ready to devour the child as soon as it should be born,” where was there anything that could correspond to the statement that the child, to save it from that dragon, ”was caught up to God and His Throne”? The flight of Joseph and Mary with the Child into Egypt could never answer to such language. Moreover, it is worthy of special note, that when the Lord Jesus was born in Bethlehem, He was born, in a very important sense only as ”King of the Jews.” ”Where is He that is born King of the Jews?” was the inquiry of the wise men that came from the East to seek Him. All His life long, He appeared in no other character; and when He died, the inscription on His cross ran in these terms: ”This is the King of the Jews.” Now, this was no accidental thing. Paul tells us (Rom 15:8) that ”Jesus Christ was a minister of the circumcision for the truth of God, to confirm the promises made unto the fathers.” Our Lord Himself plainly declared the same thing. ”I am not sent,” said He to the Syrophoenician woman, ”save to the lost sheep of the house of Israel”; and, in sending out His disciples during His personal ministry, this was the charge which He gave them: ”Go not in the way of the Gentiles, and into any city of the Samaritans enter ye not.” It was only when He was ”begotten from the dead,” and ”declared to be the Son of God with power,” by His victory over the grave, that He was revealed as ”the Man-child, born to rule all nations.” Then said He to His disciples, when He had risen, and was about to ascend on high: ”All power is given unto Me in heaven and in earth: go ye therefore, and teach allnations.” To this glorious ”birth” from the tomb, and to the birth-pangs of His Church that preceded it, our Lord Himself made distinct allusion on the night before He was betrayed (John 16:20-22). ”Verily, verily, I say unto you, That ye shall weep and lament, but the world shall rejoice; and ye shall be sorrowful, but your sorrow shall be turned into joy. A woman when she is in travail hath sorrow, because her hour is come; but as soon as she is delivered of the child, she remembereth no more the anguish, for joy that a MAN is born into the world. And ye now therefore have sorrow; but I will see you again, and your heart shall rejoice.” Here the grief of the apostles, and, of course, all the true Church that sympathised with them during the hour and power of darkness, is compared to the pangs of a travailing woman; and their joy, when the Saviour should see them again after His resurrection, to the joy of a mother when safely delivered of a Man-child. Can there be a doubt, then, what the symbol before us means, when the woman is represented as travailing in pain to be delivered of a ”Man-child, that was to rule all nations,” and when it is said that that ”Man-child was caught up to God and His Throne”?
Nothing could more lucidly show it forth. Among the lords many, and the gods many, worshipped in the imperial city, the two grand objects of worship were the ”Eternal Fire,” kept perpetually burning in the temple of Vesta, and the sacred Epidaurian Serpent. In Pagan Rome, this fire-worship and serpent-worship were sometimes separate, sometimes conjoined; but both occupied a pre-eminent place in Roman esteem. The fire of Vesta was regarded as one of the grand safeguards of the empire. It was pretended to have been brought from Troy by Aeneas, who had it confided to his care by the shade of Hector, and was kept with the most jealous care by the Vestal virgins, who, for their charge of it, were honoured with the highest honours. The temple where it was kept, says Augustine, ”was the most sacred and most reverenced of all the temples of Rome.” The fire that was so jealously guarded in that temple, and on which so much was believed to depend, was regarded in the very same light as by the old Babylonian fire-worshippers. It was looked upon as the purifier, and in April every year, at the Palilia, or feast of Pales, both men and cattle, for this purpose, were made to pass through the fire. The Epidaurian snake, that the Romans worshipped along with the fire, was looked on as the divine representation of Aesculapius, the child of the Sun. Aesculapius, whom that sacred snake represented, was evidently, just another name for the great Babylonian god. His fate was exactly the same as that of Phaethon. He was said to have been smitten with lightning for raising the dead. It is evident that this could never have been the case in a physical sense, nor could it easily have been believed to be so. But view it in a spiritual sense, and then the statement is just this, that he was believed to raise men who were dead in trespasses and sins to newness of life. Now, this was exactly what Phaethon was pretending to do, when he was smitten for setting the world on fire. In the Babylonian system there was a symbolical death, that all the initiated had to pass through, before they got the new life which was implied in regeneration, and that just to declare that they had passed from death unto life. As the passing through the fire was both a purgation from sin and the means of regeneration, so it was also for raising the dead that Phaethon was smitten. Then, as Aesculapius was the child of the Sun, so was Phaethon. *
* The birth of Aesculapius in the myth was just the same as that of Bacchus. His mother was consumed by lightning, and the infant was rescued from the lightning that consumed her, as Bacchus was snatched from the flames that burnt up his mother.–LEMPRIERE
To symbolise this relationship, the head of the image of Aesculapius was generally encircled with rays. The Pope thus encircles the heads of the pretended images of Christ; but the real source of these irradiations is patent to all acquainted either with the literature or the art of Rome. Thus speaks Virgil of Latinus:–
”And now, in pomp, the peaceful kings appear,
Four steeds the chariot of Latinus bear,
Twelve golden beams around his temples play,
To mark his lineage from the god of day.”
The ”golden beams” around the head of Aesculapius were intended to mark the same, to point him out as the child of the Sun, or the Sun incarnate. The ”golden beams” around the heads of pictures and images called by the name of Christ, were intended to show the Pagans that they might safely worship them, as the images of their well-known divinities, though called by a different name. Now Aesculapius, in a time of deadly pestilence, had been invited from Epidaurus to Rome. The god, under the form of a larger serpent, entered the ship that was sent to convey him to Rome, and having safely arrived in the Tiber, was solemnly inaugurated as the guardian god of the Romans. From that time forth, in private as well as in public, the worship of the Epidaurian snake, the serpent that represented the Sun-divinity incarnate, in other words, the ”Serpent of Fire,” became nearly universal. In almost every house the sacred serpent, which was a harmless sort, was to be found. ”These serpents nestled about the domestic altars,” says the author of Pompeii, ”and came out, like dogs or cats, to be patted by the visitors, and beg for something to eat. Nay, at table, if we may build upon insulated passages, they crept about the cups of the guests, and, in hot weather, ladies would use them as live boas, and twist them round their necks for the sake of coolness…These sacred animals made war on the rats and mice, and thus kept down one species of vermin; but as they bore a charmed life, and no one laid violent hands on them, they multiplied so fast, that, like the monkeys of Benares, they became an intolerable nuisance. The frequent fires at Rome were the only things that kept them under.” Some pictures represent Roman fire-worship and serpent-worship at once separate and conjoined. The reason of the double representation of the god I cannot here enter into, but it must be evident, from the words of Virgil already quoted, that the figures having their heads encircled with rays, represent the fire-god, or Sun-divinity; and what is worthy of special note is, that these fire-gods are black, * the colour thereby identifying them with the Ethiopian or black Phaethon; while, as the author of Pompeii himself admits, these same black fire-gods are represented by two huge serpents.
* ”All the faces in his (MAZOIS’) engraving are quite black.” (Pompeii) In India, the infant Crishna (emphatically the black god), in the arms of the goddess Devaki, is represented with the woolly hair and marked features of the Negro or African race.
Now, if this worship of the sacred serpent of the Sun, the great fire-god, was so universal in Rome, what symbol could more graphically portray the idolatrous power of Pagan Imperial Rome than the ”Great Fiery Serpent”? No doubt it was to set forth this very thing that the Imperial standard itself–the standard of the Pagan Emperor of Rome, as Pontifex Maximus, Head of the great system of fire-worship and serpent-worship–was a serpent elevated on a lofty pole, and so coloured, as to exhibit it as a recognised symbol of fire-worship. (see note below)
As Christianity spread in the Roman Empire, the powers of light and darkness came into collision (Rev 12:7,8): ”Michael and his angels fought against the dragon; and the dragon fought and his angels, and prevailed not; neither was their place found any more in heaven. And the great dragon was cast out;…he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him.” The ”great serpent of fire” was cast out, when, by the decree of Gratian, Paganism throughout the Roman empire was abolished–when the fires of Vesta were extinguished, and the revenues of the Vestal virgins were confiscated–when the Roman Emperor (who though for more than a century and a half a professor of Christianity, had been ”Pontifex Maximus,” the very head of the idolatry of Rome, and as such, on high occasions, appearing invested with all the idolatrous insignia of Paganism), through force of conscience abolished his own office. While Nimrod was personally and literally slain by the sword, it was through the sword of the Spirit that Shem overcame the system of fire-worship, and so bowed the hearts of men, as to cause it for a time to be utterly extinguished. In like manner did the Dragon of fire, in the Roman Empire, receive a deadly wound from a sword, and that the sword of the Spirit, which is the Word of God. There is thus far an exact analogy between the type and the antitype.
But not only is there this analogy. It turns out, when the records of history are searched to the bottom, that when the head of the Pagan idolatry of Rome was slain with the sword by the extinction of the office of Pontifex Maximus, the last Roman Pontifex Maximus was the ACTUAL, LEGITIMATE, SOLE REPRESENTATIVE OF NIMROD and his idolatrous system then existing. To make this clear, a brief glance at the Roman history is necessary. In common with all the earth, Rome at a very early prehistoric period, had drunk deep of Babylon’s ”golden cup.” But above and beyond all other nations, it had had a connection with the idolatry of Babylon that put it in a position peculiar and alone. Long before the days of Romulus, a representative of the Babylonian Messiah, called by his name, had fixed his temple as a god, and his palace as a king, on one of those very heights which came to be included within the walls of that city which Remus and his brother were destined to found. On the Capitoline hill, so famed in after-days as the great high place of Roman worship, Saturnia, or the city of Saturn, the great Chaldean god, had in the days of dim and distant antiquity been erected. Some revolution had then taken place–the graven images of Babylon had been abolished–the erecting of any idol had been sternly prohibited, * and when the twin founders of the now world-renowned city reared its humble walls, the city and the palace of their Babylonian predecessor had long lain in ruins.
* PLUTARCH (in Hist. Numoe) states, that Numa forbade the making of images, and that for 170 years after the founding of Rome, no images were allowed in the Roman temples.
The ruined state of this sacred city, even in the remote age of Evander, is alluded to by Virgil. Referring to the time when Aeneas is said to have visited that ancient Italian king, thus he speaks:–
”Then saw two heaps of ruins; once they stood
Two stately towns on either side the flood;
Saturnia and Janicula’s remains;
And either place the founder’s name retains.”
The deadly wound, however, thus given to the Chaldean system, was destined to be healed. A colony of Etruscans, earnestly attached to the Chaldean idolatry, had migrated, some say from Asia Minor, others from Greece, and settled in the immediate neighbourhood of Rome. They were ultimately incorporated in the Roman state, but long before this political union took place they exercised the most powerful influence on the religion of the Romans. From the very first their skill in augury, soothsaying, and all science, real or pretended, that the augurs or soothsayers monopolised, made the Romans look up to them with respect. It is admitted on all hands that the Romans derived their knowledge of augury, which occupied so prominent a place in every public transaction in which they engaged, chiefly from the Tuscans, that is, the people of Etruria, and at first none but natives of that country were permitted to exercise the office of a Haruspex, which had respect to all the rites essentially involved in sacrifice. Wars and disputes arose between Rome and the Etruscans; but still the highest of the noble youths of Rome were sent to Etruria to be instructed in the sacred science which flourished there. The consequence was, that under the influence of men whose minds were moulded by those who clung to the ancient idol-worship, the Romans were brought back again to much of that idolatry which they had formerly repudiated and cast off. Though Numa, therefore, in setting up his religious system, so far deferred to the prevailing feeling of his day and forbade image-worship, yet in consequence of the alliance subsisting between Rome and Etruria in sacred things, matters were put in train for the ultimate subversion of that prohibition. The college of Pontiffs, of which he laid the foundation, in process of time came to be substantially an Etruscan college, and the Sovereign Pontiff that presided over that college, and that controlled all the public and private religious rites of the Roman people in all essential respects, became in spirit and in practice an Etruscan Pontiff.
Still the Sovereign Pontiff of Rome, even after the Etruscan idolatry was absorbed into the Roman system, was only an offshoot from the grand original Babylonian system. He was a devoted worshipper of the Babylonian god; but he was not the legitimate representative of that God. The true legitimate Babylonian Pontiff had his seat beyond the bounds of the Roman empire. That seat, after the death of Belshazzar, and the expulsion of the Chaldean priesthood from Babylon by the Medo-Persian kings, was at Pergamos, where afterwards was one of the seven churches of Asia. * There, in consequence, for many centuries was ”Satan’s seat” (Rev 2:13). There, under favour of the deified ** kings of Pergamos, was his favourite abode, there was the worship of Aesculapius, under the form of the serpent, celebrated with frantic orgies and excesses, that elsewhere were kept under some measure of restraint.
* BARKER and AINSWORTH’S Lares and Penates of Cilicia. Barker says, ”The defeated Chaldeans fled to Asia Minor, and fixed their central college at Pergamos.” Phrygia, that was so remarkable for the worship of Cybele and Atys, formed part of the Kingdom of Pergamos. Mysia also was another, and the Mysians, in the Paschal Chronicle, are said to be descended from Nimrod. The words are, ”Nebrod, the huntsman and giant–from whence came the Mysians.” Lydia, also, from which Livy and Herodotus say the Etrurians came, formed part of the same kingdom. For the fact that Mysia, Lydia, and Phrygia were constituent parts of the kingdom of Pergamos, see SMITH’s Classical Dictionary.
** The kings of Pergamos, in whose dominions the Chaldean Magi found an asylum, were evidently by them, and by the general voice of Paganism that sympathised with them, put into the vacant place which Belshazzar and his predecessors had occupied. They were hailed as the representatives of the old Babylonian god. This is evident from the statements of Pausanias. First, he quotes the following words from the oracle of a prophetess called Phaennis, in reference to the Gauls: ”But divinity will still more seriously afflict those that dwell near the sea. However, in a short time after, Jupiter will send them a defender, the beloved son of a Jove-nourished bull, who will bring destruction on all the Gauls.” Then on this he comments as follows: ”Phaennis, in this oracle, means by the son of a bull, Attalus, king of Pergamos, whom the oracle of Apollo called Taurokeron,” or bull-horned. This title given by the Delphian god, proves that Attalus, in whose dominions the Magi had their seat, had been set up and recognised in the very character of Bacchus, the Head of the Magi. Thus the vacant seat of Belshazzar was filled, and the broken chain of the Chaldean succession renewed.
At first, the Roman Pontiff had no immediate connection with Pergamos and the hierarchy there; yet, in course of time, the Pontificate of Rome and the Pontificate of Pergamos came to be identified. Pergamos itself became part and parcel of the Roman empire, when Attalus III, the last of its kings, at his death, left by will all his dominions to the Roman people, BC 133. For some time after the kingdom of Pergamos was merged in the Roman dominions, there was no one who could set himself openly and advisedly to lay claim to all the dignity inherent in the old title of the kings of Pergamos. The original powers even of the Roman Pontiffs seem to have been by that time abridged, but when Julius Caesar, who had previously been elected Pontifex Maximus, became also, as Emperor, the supreme civil ruler of the Romans, then, as head of the Roman state, and head of the Roman religion, all the powers and functions of the true legitimate Babylonian Pontiff were supremely vested in him, and he found himself in a position to assert these powers. Then he seems to have laid claim to the divine dignity of Attalus, as well as the kingdom that Attalus had bequeathed to the Romans, as centering in himself; for his well-known watchword, ”Venus Genetrix,” which meant that Venus was the mother of the Julian race, appears to have been intended to make him ”The Son” of the great goddess, even as the ”Bull-horned” Attalus had been regarded. *
* The deification of the emperors that continued in succession from the days of Divus Julius, or the ”Deified Julius,” can be traced to no cause so likely as their representing the ”Bull-horned” Attalus both as Pontiff and Sovereign.
Then, on certain occasions, in the exercise of his high pontifical office, he appeared of course in all the pomp of the Babylonian costume, as Belshazzar himself might have done, in robes of scarlet, with the crosier of Nimrod in his hand, wearing the mitre of Dagon and bearing the keys of Janus and Cybele. *
* That the key was one of the symbols used in the Mysteries, the reader will find on consulting TAYLOR’S Note on Orphic Hymn to Pluto, where that divinity is spoken of as ”keeper of the keys.” Now the Pontifex, as ”Hierophant,” was ”arrayed in the habit and adorned with the symbols of the great Creator of the world, of whom in these Mysteries he was supposed to be the substitute.” (MAURICE’S Antiquities) The Primeval or Creative god was mystically represented as Androgyne, as combining in his own person both sexes (Ibid.), being therefore both Janus and Cybele at the same time. In opening up the Mysteries, therefore, of this mysterious divinity, it was natural that the Pontifex should bear the key of both these divinities. Janus himself, however, as well as Pluto, was often represented with more than one key.
Thus did matter continue, as already stated, even under so-called Christian emperors; who, as a salve to their consciences, appointed a heathen as their substitute in the performance of the more directly idolatrous functions of the pontificate (that substitute, however, acting in their name and by their authority), until the reign of Gratian, who, as shown by Gibbon, was the first that refused to be arrayed in the idolatrous pontifical attire, or to act as Pontifex. Now, from all this it is evident that, when Paganism in the Roman empire was abolished, when the office of Pontifex Maximus was suppressed, and all the dignitaries of paganism were cast down from their seats of influence and of power, which they had still been allowed in some measure to retain, that was not merely the casting down of the Fiery Dragon of Rome, but the casting down of the Fiery Dragon of Babylon. It was just the enacting over again, in a symbolical sense, upon the true and sole legitimate successor of Nimrod, what had taken place upon himself, when the greatness of his downfall gave rise to the exclamation, ”How art thou fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning”!


Notes

Zoroaster, the Head of the Fire-Worshippers
That Zoroaster was head of the fire-worshippers, the following, among other evidence, may prove. Not to mention that the name Zoroaster is almost a synonym for a fire-worshipper, the testimony of Plutarch is of weight: ”Plutarch acknowledges that Zoroaster among the Chaldeans instituted the Magi, in imitation of whom the Persians also had their (Magi). * The Arabian History also relates that Zaradussit, or Zerdusht, did not for the first time institute, but (only) reform the religion of the Persians and Magi, who had been divided into many sects.”
* The great antiquity of the institution of the Magi is proved from the statement of Aristotle already referred to, as preserved in Theopompus, which makes them to have been ”more ancient than the Egyptians,” whose antiquity is well known. (Theopompi Fragmenta in MULLER).
The testimony of Agathias is to the same effect. He gives it as his opinion that the worship of fire came from the Chaldeans to the Persians. That the Magi among the Persians were the guardians of ”the sacred and eternal fire” may be assumed from Curtius, who says that fire was carried before them ”on silver altars”; from the statement of Strabo (Geograph.), that ”the Magi kept upon the altar a quantity of ashes and an immortal fire,” and of Herodotus, that ”without them, no sacrifice could be offered.” The fire-worship was an essential part of the system of the Persian Magi (WILSON, Parsee Religion). This fire-worship the Persian Magi did not pretend to have invented; but their popular story carried the origin of it up to the days of Hoshang, the father of Tahmurs, who founded Babylon (WILSON)–i.e., the time of Nimrod. In confirmation of this, we have seen that a fragment of Apollodorus makes Ninus the head of the fire-worshipper, Layard, quoting this fragment, supposes Ninus to be different from Zoroaster (Nineveh and its Remains); but it can be proved, that though many others bore the name of Zoroaster, the lines of evidence all converge, so as to demonstrate that Ninus and Nimrod and Zoroaster were one. The legends of Zoroaster show that he was known not only as a Magus, but as a Warrior (ARNOBIUS). Plato says that Eros Armenius (whom CLERICUS, De Chaldaeis, states to have been the same as the fourth Zoroaster) died and rose again after ten days, having been killed in battle; and that what he pretended to have learned in Hades, he communicated to men in his new life (PLATO, De Republica). We have seen the death of Nimrod, the original Zoroaster, was not that of a warrior slain in battle; but yet this legend of the warrior Zoroaster is entirely in favour of the supposition that the original Zoroaster, the original Head of the Magi, was not a priest merely, but a warrior-king. Everywhere are the Zoroastrians, or fire-worshippers, called Guebres or Gabrs. Now, Genesis 10:8 proves that Nimrod was the first of the ”Gabrs.”
As Zoroaster was head of the fire-worshippers, so Tammuz was evidently the same. We have seen evidence already that sufficiently proves the identity of Tammuz and Nimrod; but a few words may still more decisively prove it, and cast further light on the primitive fire-worship. 1. In the first place, Tammuz and Adonis are proved to be the same divinity. Jerome, who lived in Palestine when the rites of Tammuz were observed, up to the very time when he wrote, expressly identifies Tammuz and Adonis, in his Commentary on Ezekiel, where the Jewish women are represented as weeping for Tammuz; and the testimony of Jerome on this subject is universally admitted. Then the mode in which the rites of Tammuz or Adonis were celebrated in Syria was essentially the same as the rites of Osiris. The statement of Lucian (De Dea Syria) strikingly shows this, and Bunsen distinctly admits it. The identity of Osiris and Nimrod has been largely proved in the body of this work. When, therefore, Tammuz or Adonis is identified with Osiris, the identification of Tammuz with Nimrod follows of course. And then this entirely agrees with the language of Bion, in his Lament for Adonis, where he represents Venus as going in a frenzy of grief, like a Bacchant, after the death of Adonis, through the woods and valleys, and ”calling upon her Assyrian husband.” It equally agrees with the statement of Maimonides, that when Tammuz was put to death, the grand scene of weeping for that death was in the temple of Babylon. 2. Now, if Tammuz was Nimrod, the examination of the meaning of the name confirms the connection of Nimrod with the first fire-worship. After what has already been advanced, there needs no argument to show that, as the Chaldeans were the first who introduced the name and power of kings (SYNCELLUS), and as Nimrod was unquestionably the first of these kings, and the first, consequently, that bore the title of Moloch, or king, so it was in honour of him that the ”children were made to pass through the fire to Moloch.” But the intention of that passing through the fire was undoubtedly to purify. The name Tammuz has evidently reference to this, for it signifies ”to perfect,” that is, ”to purify” * ”by fire”; and if Nimrod was, as the Paschal Chronicle, and the general voice of antiquity, represent him to have been, the originator of fire-worship, this name very exactly expresses his character in that respect.
* From tam, ”to perfect,” and muz, ”to burn.” To be ”pure in heart” in Scripture is just the same as to be ”perfect in heart.” The well-known name Deucalion, as connected with the flood, seems to be a correlative term of the water-worshippers. Dukh-kaleh signifies ”to purify by washing,” from Dikh, ”to wash” (CLAVIS STOCKII), and Khaleh, ”to complete,” or ”perfect.” The noun from the latter verb, found in 2 Chronicles 4:21, shows that the root means ”to purify,” ”perfect gold” being in the Septuagint justly rendered ”pure gold.” There is a name sometimes applied to the king of the gods that has some bearing on this subject. That name is ”Akmon.” What is the meaning of it? It is evidently just the Chaldee form of the Hebrew Khmn, ”the burner,” which becomes Akmon in the same way as the Hebrew Dem, ”blood,” in Chaldee becomes ”Adem.” Hesychius says that Akmon is Kronos, sub voce ”Akmon.” In Virgil (Aeneid) we find this name compounded so as to be an exact synonym for Tammuz, Pyracmon being the name of one of the three famous Cyclops whom the poet introduces. We have seen that the original Cyclops were Kronos and his brethren, and deriving the name from ”Pur,” the Chaldee form of Bur, ”to purify,” and ”Akmon,” it just signifies ”The purifying burner.”
It is evident, however, from the Zoroastrian verse, elsewhere quoted, that fire itself was worshipped as Tammuz, for it is called the ”Father that perfected all things.” In one respect this represented fire as the Creative god; but in another, there can be no doubt that it had reference to the ”perfecting” of men by ”purifying” them. And especially it perfected those whom it consumed. This was the very idea that, from time immemorial until very recently, led so many widows in India to immolate themselves on the funeral piles of their husbands, the woman who thus burned herself being counted blessed, because she became Suttee *–i.e., ”Pure by burning.”
* MOOR’S Pantheon, ”Siva.” The epithet for a woman that burns herself is spelled ”Sati,” but is pronounced ”Suttee,” as above.
And this also, no doubt, reconciled the parents who actually sacrificed their children to Moloch, to the cruel sacrifice, the belief being cherished that the fire that consumed them also ”perfected” them, and made them meet for eternal happiness. As both the passing through the fire, and the burning in the fire, were essential rites in the worship of Moloch or Nimrod, this is an argument that Nimrod was Tammuz. As the priest and representative of the perfecting or purifying fire, it was he that carried on the work of perfecting or purifying by fire, and so he was called by its name.
When we turn to the legends of India, we find evidence to the very same effect as that which we have seen with regard to Zoroaster and Tammuz as head of the fire-worshippers. The fifth head of Brahma, that was cut off for inflicting distress on the three worlds, by the ”effulgence of its dazzling beams,” referred to in the text of this work, identifies itself with Nimrod. The fact that that fifth head was represented as having read the Vedas, or sacred books produced by the other four heads, shows, I think, a succession. *
* The Indian Vedas that now exist do not seem to be of very great antiquity as written documents; but the legend goes much further back than anything that took place in India. The antiquity of writing seems to be very great, but whether or not there was any written religious document in Nimrod’s day, a Veda there must have been; for what is the meaning of the word ”Veda”? It is evidently just the same as the Anglo-Saxon Edda with the digamma prefixed, and both alike evidently come from ”Ed” a ”Testimony,” a ”Religious Record,” or ”confession of Faith.” Such a ”Record” or ”Confession,” either ”oral” or ”written,” must have existed from the beginning.
Now, coming down from Noah, what would that succession be? We have evidence from Berosus, that, in the days of Belus–that is, Nimrod–the custom of making representations like that of two-headed Janus, had begun. Assume, then, that Noah, as having lived in two worlds, has his two heads. Ham is the third, Cush the fourth, and Nimrod is, of course, the fifth. And this fifth head was cut off for doing the very thing for which Nimrod actually was cut off. I suspect that this Indian myth is the key to open up the meaning of a statement of Plutarch, which, according to the terms of it, as it stands, is visibly absurd. It is as follows: Plutarch (in the fourth book of his Symposiaca) says that ”the Egyptians were of the opinion that darkness was prior to light, and that the latter [viz. light] was produced from mice, in the fifth generation, at the time of the new moon.” In India, we find that ”a new moon” was produced in a different sense from the ordinary meaning of that term, and that the production of that new moon was not only important in Indian mythology, but evidently agreed in time with the period when the fifth head of Brahma scorched the world with its insufferable splendour. The account of its production runs thus: that the gods and mankind were entirely discontented with the moon which they had got, ”Because it gave no light,” and besides the plants were poor and the fruits of no use, and that therefore they churned the White sea [or, as it is commonly expressed, "they churned the ocean"], when all things were mingled–i.e., were thrown into confusion, and that then a new moon, with a new regent, was appointed, which brought in an entirely new system of things (Asiatic Researches). From MAURICE’s Indian Antiquities, we learn that at this very time of the churning of the ocean, the earth was set on fire, and a great conflagration was the result. But the name of the moon in India is Soma, or Som (for the final a is only a breathing, and the word is found in the name of the famous temple of Somnaut, which name signifies ”Lord of the Moon”), and the moon in India is male. As this transaction is symbolical, the question naturally arises, who could be meant by the moon, or regent of the moon, who was cast off in the fifth generation of the world? The name Som shows at once who he must have been. Som is just the name of Shem; for Shem’s name comes from Shom, ”to appoint,” and is legitimately represented either by the name Som, or Sem, as it is in Greek; and it was precisely to get rid of Shem (either after his father’s death, or when the infirmities of old age were coming upon him) as the great instructor of the world, that is, as the great diffuser of spiritual light, that in the fifth generation the world was thrown into confusion and the earth set on fire. The propriety of Shem’s being compared to the moon will appear if we consider the way in which his father Noah was evidently symbolised. The head of a family is divinely compared to the sun, as in the dream of Joseph (Gen 37:9), and it may be easily conceived how Noah would, by his posterity in general, be looked up to as occupying the paramount place as the Sun of the world; and accordingly Bryant, Davies, Faber, and others, have agreed in recognising Noah as so symbolised by Paganism. When, however, his younger son–for Shem was younger than Japhet–(Gen 10:21) was substituted for his father, to whom the world had looked up in comparison of the ”greater light,” Shem would naturally, especially by those who disliked him and rebelled against him, be compared to ”the lesser light,” or the moon. *
* ”As to the kingdom, the Oriental Oneirocritics, jointly say, that the sun is the symbol of the king, and the moon of the next to him in power.” This sentence extracted from DAUBUZ’s Symbolical Dictionary, illustrated with judicious notes by my learned friend, the Rev. A. Forbes, London, shows that the conclusion to which I had come before seeing it, in regard to the symbolical meaning of the moon, is entirely in harmony with Oriental modes of thinking.
Now, the production of light by mice at this period, comes in exactly to confirm this deduction. A mouse in Chaldee is ”Aakbar”; and Gheber, or Kheber, in Arabic, Turkish, and some of the other eastern dialects, becomes ”Akbar,” as in the well-known Moslem saying, ”Allar Akbar,” ”God is Great.” So that the whole statement of Plutarch, when stripped of its nonsensical garb, just amounts to this, that light was produced by the Guebres or fire-worshippers, when Nimrod was set up in opposition to Shem, as the representative of Noah, and the great enlightener of the world.
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The Story of Phaethon
The identity of Phaethon and Nimrod has much to support it besides the prima facie evidence arising from the statement that Phaethon was an Ethiopian or Cushite, and the resemblance of his fate, in being cast down from heaven while driving the chariot of the sun, as ”the child of the Sun,” to the casting down of Molk-Gheber, whose very name, as the god of fire, identifies him with Nimrod. 1. Phaethon is said by Apollodorus to have been the son of Tithonus; but if the meaning of the name Tithonus be examined, it will be evident that he was Tithonus himself. Tithonus was the husband of Aurora (DYMOCK). In the physical sense, as we have already seen, Aur-ora signifies ”The awakener of the light”; to correspond with this Tithonus signifies ”The kindler of light,” or ”setter on fire.” *
* From Tzet or Tzit, ”to kindle,” or ”set on fire,” which in Chaldee becomes Tit, and Thon, ”to give.”
Now ”Phaethon, the son of Tithonus,” is in Chaldee ”Phaethon Bar Tithon.” But this also signifies ”Phaethon, the son that set on fire.” Assuming, then, the identity of Phaethon and Tithonus, this goes far to identify Phaethon with Nimrod; for Homer, as we have seen (Odyssey), mentions the marriage of Aurora with Orion, the mighty Hunter, whose identity with Nimrod is established. Then the name of the celebrated son that sprang from the union between Aurora and Tithonus, shows that Tithonus, in his original character, must have been indeed the same as ”the mighty hunter” of Scripture, for the name of that son was Memnon (MARTIAL and OVID, Metam.), which signifies ”The son of the spotted one,” * thereby identifying the father with Nimrod, whose emblem was the spotted leopard’s skin.
* From Mem or Mom, ”spotted,” and Non, ”a son.”
As Ninus or Nimrod, was worshipped as the son of his own wife, and that wife Aurora, the goddess of the dawn, we see how exact is the reference to Phaethon, when Isaiah, speaking of the King of Babylon, who was his representative, says, ”How art thou fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning” (Isa 14:12). The marriage of Orion with Aurora; in other words, his setting up as ”The kindler of light,” or becoming the ”author of fire-worship,” is said by Homer to have been the cause of his death, he having in consequence perished under the wrath of the gods. 2. That Phaethon was currently represented as the son of Aurora, the common story, as related by Ovid, sufficiently proves. While Phaethon claimed to be the son of Phoebus, or the sun, he was reproached with being only the son of Merops–i.e., of the mortal husband of his mother Clymene (OVID, Metam.). The story implies that that mother gave herself out to be Aurora, not in the physical sense of that term, but in its mystical sense; as ”The woman pregnant with light”; and, consequently, her son was held up as the great ”Light-bringer” who was to enlighten the world,–”Lucifer, the son of the morning,” who was the pretended enlightener of the souls of men. The name Lucifer, in Isaiah, is the very word from which Eleleus, one of the names of Bacchus, evidently comes. It comes from ”Helel,” which signifies ”to irradiate” or ”to bring light,” and is equivalent to the name Tithon. Now we have evidence that Lucifer, the son of Aurora, or the morning, was worshipped in the very same character as Nimrod, when he appeared in his new character as a little child.
This Phaethon, or Lucifer, who was cast down is further proved to be Janus; for Janus is called ”Pater Matutinus” (HORACE); and the meaning of this name will appear in one of its aspects when the meaning of the name of the Dea Matuta is ascertained. Dea Matuta signifies ”The kindling or Light-bringing goddess,” * and accordingly, by Priscian, she is identified with Aurora.
* Matuta comes from the same word as Tithonus–i.e., Tzet, Tzit, or Tzut, which in Chaldee becomes Tet, Tit, or Tut, ”to light” or ”set on fire.” From Tit, ”to set on fire,” comes the Latin Titio, ”a firebrand”; and from Tut, with the formative M prefixed, comes Matuta–just as from Nasseh, ”to forget,” with the same formative prefixed, comes Manasseh, ”forgetting,” the name of the eldest son of Joseph (Gen 41:51). The root of this verb is commonly given as ”Itzt”; but see BAKER’S Lexicon, where it is also given as ”Tzt.” It is evidently from this root that the Sanscrit ”Suttee” already referred to comes.
Matutinus is evidently just the correlate of Matuta, goddess of the morning; Janus, therefore, as Matutinus, is ”Lucifer, son of the morning.” But further, Matuta is identified with Ino, after she had plunged into the sea, and had, along with her son Melikerta, been changed into a sea-divinity. Consequently her son Melikerta, ”king of the walled city,” is the same as Janus Matutinus, or Lucifer, Phaethon, or Nimrod.
There is still another link by which Melikerta, the sea-divinity, or Janus Matutinus, is identified with the primitive god of the fire-worshippers. The most common name of Ino, or Matuta, after she had passed through the waters, was Leukothoe (OVID, Metam.). Now, Leukothoe or Leukothea has a double meaning, as it is derived either from ”Lukhoth,” which signifies ”to light,” or ”set on fire,” or from Lukoth ”to glean.” In the Maltese medal, the ear of corn, at the side of the goddess, which is more commonly held in her hand, while really referring in its hidden meaning to her being the Mother of Bar, ”the son,” to the uninitiated exhibits her as Spicilega, or ”The Gleaner,”–”the popular name,” says Hyde, ”for the female with the ear of wheat represented in the constellation Virgo.” In Bryant, Cybele is represented with two or three ears of corn in her hand; for as there were three peculiarly distinguished Bacchuses, there were consequently as many ”Bars,” and she might therefore be represented with one, two, or three ears in her hand. But to revert to the Maltese medal just referred to, the flames coming out of the head of Lukothea, the ”Gleaner,” show that, though she has passed through the waters, she is still Lukhothea, ”the Burner,” or ”Light-giver.” And the rays around the mitre of the god on the reverse entirely agree with the character of that god as Eleleus, or Phaethon–in other words, as ”The Shining Bar.” Now, this ”Shining Bar,” as Melikerta, ”king of the walled city,” occupies the very place of ”Ala-Mahozim,” whose representative the Pope is elsewhere proved to be. But he is equally the sea-divinity, who in that capacity wears the mitre of Dagon. The fish-head mitre which the Pope wears shows that, in this character also, as the ”Beast from the sea,” he is the unquestionable representative of Melikerta.
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The Roman Imperial Standard of the Dragon a Symbol of Fire- worship
The passage of Ammianus Marcellinus, that speaks of that standard, calls it ”purpureum signum draconis.” On this may be raised the question, Has the epithet purpureum, as describing the colour of the dragon, any reference to fire? The following extract from Salverte may cast some light upon it: ”The dragon figured among the military ensigns of the Assyrians. Cyrus caused it to be adopted by the Persians and Medes. Under the Roman emperors, and under the emperors of Byzantium, each cohort or centuria bore for an ensign a dragon.” There is no doubt that the dragon or serpent standard of the Assyrians and Persians had reference to fire-worship, the worship of fire and the serpent being mixed up together in both these countries. As the Romans, therefore, borrowed these standards evidently from these sources, it is to be presumed that they viewed them in the very same light as those from whom they borrowed them, especially as that light was so exactly in harmony with their own system of fire-worship. The epithet purpureus or ”purple” does not indeed naturally convey the idea of fire-colour to us. But it does convey the idea of red; and red in one shade or another, among idolatrous nations, has almost with one consent been used to represent fire. The Egyptians (BUNSEN), the Hindoos (MOOR’S Pantheon, ”Brahma”), the Assyrians (LAYARD’S Nineveh), all represented fire by red. The Persians evidently did the same, for when Quintus Curtius describes the Magi as following ”the sacred and eternal fire,” he describes the 365 youths, who formed the train of these Magi, as clad in ”scarlet garments,” the colour of these garments, no doubt, having reference to the fire whose ministers they were. Puniceus is equivalent to purpureus, for it was in Phenicia [six] that the purpura, or purple-fish, was originally found. The colour derived from that purple-fish was scarlet, and it is the very name of that Phoenician purple-fish, ”arguna,” that is used in Daniel 5:16 and 19, where it is said that he that should interpret the handwriting on the wall should ”be clothed in scarlet.” The Tyrians had the art of making true purples, as well as scarlet; and there seems no doubt that purpureus is frequently used in the ordinary sense attached to our word purple. But the original meaning of the epithet is scarlet; and as bright scarlet colour is a natural colour to represent fire, so we have reason to believe that that colour, when used for robes of state among the Tyrians, had special reference to fire; for the Tyrian Hercules, who was regarded as the inventor of purple (BRYANT), was regarded as ”King of Fire,” (NONNUS, Dionysiaca). Now, when we find that the purpura of Tyre produced the scarlet colour which naturally represented fire, and that puniceus, which is equivalent to purpureus, is evidently used for scarlet, there is nothing that forbids us to understand purpureus in the same sense here, but rather requires it. But even though it were admitted that the tinge was deeper, and purpureus meant the true purple, as red, of which it is a shade, is the established colour of fire, and as the serpent was the universally acknowledged symbol of fire-worship, the probability is strong that the use of a red dragon as the Imperial standard of Rome was designed as an emblem of that system of fire-worship on which the safety of the empire was believed so vitally to hinge.


The Two Babylons
Alexander Hislop
Chapter VII
Section II
The Beast from the Sea
The next great enemy introduced to our notice is the Beast from the Sea (Rev 13:1): ”I stood,” says John, ”upon the sand of the sea-shore, and saw a beast rise up out of the sea.” The seven heads and ten horns on this beast, as on the great dragon, show that this power is essentially the same beast, but that it has undergone a circumstantial change. In the old Babylonian system, after the worship of the god of fire, there speedily followed the worship of the god of water or the sea. As the world formerly was in danger of being burnt up, so now it was in equal danger of being drowned. In the Mexican story it is said to have actually been so. First, say they, it was destroyed by fire, and then it was destroyed by water. The Druidic mythology gives the same account; for the Bards affirm that the dreadful tempest of fire that split the earth asunder, was rapidly succeeded by the bursting of the Lake Llion, when the waters of the abyss poured forth and ”overwhelmed the whole world.” In Greece we meet with the very same story. Diodorus Siculus tells us that, in former times, ”a monster called Aegides, who vomited flames, appeared in Phrygia; hence spreading along Mount Taurus, the conflagration burnt down all the woods as far as India; then, with a retrograde course, swept the forests of Mount Lebanon, and extended as far as Egypt and Africa; at last a stop was put to it by Minerva. The Phrygians remembered well this CONFLAGRATION and the FLOOD which FOLLOWED it.” Ovid, too, has a clear allusion to the same fact of the fire-worship being speedily followed by the worship of water, in his fable of the transformation of Cycnus. He represents King Cycnus, an attached friend of Phaethon, and consequently of fire-worship, as, after his friend’s death, hating the fire, and taking to the contrary element that of water, through fear, and so being transformed into a swan. In India, the great deluge, which occupies so conspicuous a place in its mythology, evidently has the same symbolical meaning, although the story of Noah is mixed up with it; for it was during that deluge that ”the lost Vedas,” or sacred books, were recovered, by means of the great god, under the form of a FISH. The ”loss of the Vedas” had evidently taken place at that very time of terrible disaster to the gods, when, according to the Purans, a great enemy of these gods, called Durgu, ”abolished all religious ceremonies, the Brahmins, through fear, forsook the reading of the Veda,…fire lost its energy, and the terrified stars retired from sight”; in other words, when idolatry, fire-worship, and the worship of the host of heaven had been suppressed. When we turn to Babylon itself, we find there also substantially the same account. In Berosus, the deluge is represented as coming after the time of Alorus, or the ”god of fire,” that is, Nimrod, which shows that there, too, this deluge was symbolical. Now, out of this deluge emerged Dagon, the fish-god, or god of the sea. The origin of the worship of Dagon, as shown by Berosus, was founded upon a legend, that, at a remote period of the past, when men were sunk in barbarism, there came up a BEAST CALLED OANNES FROM THE RED SEA, or Persian Gulf–half-man, half-fish–that civilised the Babylonians, taught them arts and sciences, and instructed them in politics and religion. The worship of Dagon was introduced by the very parties–Nimrod, of course, excepted–who had previously seduced the world into the worship of fire. In the secret Mysteries that were then set up, while in the first instance, no doubt, professing the greatest antipathy to the prescribed worship of fire, they sought to regain their influence and power by scenic representations of the awful scenes of the Flood, in which Noah was introduced under the name of Dagon, or the Fish-god–scenes in which the whole family of man, both from the nature of the event and their common connection with the second father of the human race, could not fail to feel a deep interest. The concocters of these Mysteries saw that if they could only bring men back again to idolatry in any shape, they could soon work that idolatry so as substantially to re-establish the very system that had been put down. Thus it was, that, as soon as the way was prepared for it, Tammuz was introduced as one who had allowed himself to be slain for the good of mankind. A distinction was made between good serpents and bad serpents, one kind being represented as the serpent of Agathodaemon, or the good divinity, another as the serpent of Cacodaemon, or the evil one. *
* WILKINSON. In Egypt, the Uraeus, or the Cerastes, was the good serpent, the Apophis the evil one.
It was easy, then, to lead men on by degrees to believe that, in spite of all appearances to the contrary, Tammuz, instead of being the patron of serpent-worship in any evil sense, was in reality the grand enemy of the Apophis, or great malignant serpent that envied the happiness of mankind, and that in fact he was the very seed of the woman who was destined to bruise the serpent’s head. By means of the metempsychosis, it was just as easy to identify Nimrod and Noah, and to make it appear that the great patriarch, in the person of this his favoured descendant, had graciously condescended to become incarnate anew, as Dagon, that he might bring mankind back again to the blessings they had lost when Nimrod was slain. Certain it is, that Dagon was worshipped in the Chaldean Mysteries, wherever they were established, in a character that represented both the one and the other.
In the previous system, the grand mode of purification had been by fire. Now, it was by water that men were to be purified. Then began the doctrine of baptismal regeneration, connected, as we have seen, with the passing of Noah through the waters of the Flood. Then began the reverence for holy wells, holy lakes, holy rivers, which is to be found wherever these exist on the earth; which is not only to be traced among the Parsees, who, along with the worship of fire, worship also the Zereparankard, or Caspian Sea, and among the Hindoos, who worship the purifying waters of the Ganges, and who count it the grand passport to heaven, to leave their dying relatives to be smothered in its stream; but which is seen in full force at this day in Popish Ireland, in the universal reverence for holy wells, and the annual pilgrimages to Loch Dergh, to wash away sin in its blessed waters; and which manifestly lingers also among ourselves, in the popular superstition about witches which shines out in the well-known line of Burns–
”A running stream they daurna cross.”
So much for the worship of water. Along with the water-worship, however, the old worship of fire was soon incorporated again. In the Mysteries, both modes of purification were conjoined. Though water-baptism was held to regenerate, yet purification by fire was still held to be indispensable; * and, long ages after baptismal regeneration had been established, the children were still made ”to pass through the fire to Moloch.” This double purification both by fire and water was practised in Mexico, among the followers of Wodan. This double purification was also commonly practised among the old Pagan Romans; ** and, in course of time, almost everywhere throughout the Pagan world, both the fire-worship and serpent-worship of Nimrod, which had been put down, was re-established in a new form, with all its old and many additional abominations besides.
* The name Tammuz, as applied to Nimrod or Osiris, was equivalent to Alorus or the ”god of fire,” and seems to have been given to him as the great purifier by fire. Tammuz is derived from tam, ”to make perfect,” and muz, ”fire,” and signifies ”Fire the perfecter,” or ”the perfecting fire.” To this meaning of the name, as well as to the character of Nimrod as the Father of the gods, the Zoroastrian verse alludes when it says: ”All things are the progeny of ONE FIRE. The Father perfected all things, and delivered them to the second mind, whom all nations of men call the first.” (CORY’S Fragments) Here Fire is declared to be the Father of all; for all things are said to be its progeny, and it is also called the ”perfecter of all things.” The second mind is evidently the child who displaced Nimrod’s image as an object of worship; but yet the agency of Nimrod, as the first of the gods, and the fire-god, was held indispensable for ”perfecting” men. And hence, too, no doubt, the necessity of the fire of Purgatory to ”perfect” men’s souls at last, and to purge away all the sins that they have carried with them into the unseen world.
** OVID, Fasti. It was not a little interesting to me, after being led by strict induction from circumstantial evidence to the conclusion that the purgation by fire was derived from the fire-worship of Adon or Tammuz, and that by water had reference to Noah’s Flood, to find an express statement in Ovid, that such was the actual belief at Rome in his day. After mentioning, in the passage to which the above citation refers, various fanciful reasons for the twofold purgation by fire and water, he concludes thus: ”For my part, I do not believe them; there are some (however) who say that the one is intended to commemorate Phaethon, and the other the flood of Deucalion.”
If, however, any one should still think it unlikely that the worship of Noah should be mingled in the ancient world with the worship of the Queen of Heaven and her son, let him open his eyes to what is taking place in Italy at this hour [in 1856] in regard to the worship of that patriarch and the Roman Queen of Heaven. The following, kindly sent me by Lord John Scott, as confirmatory of the views propounded in these pages, appeared in the Morning Herald, October 26, 1855: ”AN ARCHBISHOP’S PRAYER TO THE PATRIARCH NOAH.-POPERY IN TURIN.–For several consecutive years the vintage has been almost entirely destroyed in Tuscany, in consequence of the prevalent disease. The Archbishop of Florence has conceived the idea of arresting this plague by directing prayers to be offered, not to God, but to the patriarch Noah; and he has just published a collection, containing eight forms of supplication, addressed to this distinguished personage of the ancient covenant. ‘Most holy patriarch Noah!’ is the language of one of these prayers, ‘who didst employ thyself in thy long career in cultivating the vine, and gratifying the human race with that precious beverage, which allays the thirst, restores the strength, and enlivens the spirits of us all, deign to regard our vines, which, following thine example, we have cultivated hitherto; and, while thou beholdest them languishing and blighted by that disastrous visitation, which, before the vintage, destroys the fruit (in severe punishment for many blasphemies and other enormous sins we have committed), have compassion on us, and, prostrate before the lofty throne of God, who has promised to His children the fruits of the earth, and an abundance of corn and wine, entreat Him on our behalf; promise Him in our name, that, with the aid of Divine grace, we will forsake the ways of vice and sin, that we will no longer abuse His sacred gifts, and will scrupulously observe His holy law, and that of our holy Mother, the Catholic Church,’ &c. The collection concludes with a new prayer, addressed to the Virgin Mary, who is invoked in these words: ‘O immaculate Mary, behold our fields and vineyards! and, should it seem to thee that we merit so great a favour, stay, we beseech thee, this terrible plague, which, inflicted for our sins, renders our fields unfruitful, and deprives our vines of the honours of the vintage,’ &c. The work contains a vignette, representing the patriarch Noah presiding over the operations of the vintage, as well as a notification from the Archbishop, granting an indulgence of forty days to all who shall devoutly recite the prayers in question.–Christian Times” In view of such rank Paganism as this, well may the noble Lord already referred to remark, that surely here is the world turned backwards, and the worship of the old god Bacchus unmistakably restored!
Now, this god of the sea, when his worship had been firmly re-established, and all formidable opposition had been put down, was worshipped also as the great god of war, who, though he had died for the good of mankind, now that he had risen again, was absolutely invincible. In memory of this new incarnation, the 25th of December, otherwise Christmas Day, was, as we have already seen, celebrated in Pagan Rome as ”Natalis Solis invicti,” ”the birth-day of the Unconquered Sun.” We have equally seen that the very name of the Roman god of war is just the name of Nimrod; for Mars and Mavors, the two well-known names of the Roman war-god, are evidently just the Roman forms of the Chaldee ”Mar” or ”Mavor,” the Rebel. Thus terrible and invincible was Nimrod when he reappeared as Dagon, the beast from the sea. If the reader looks at what is said in Revelation 13:3, he will see precisely the same thing: ”And I saw one of his heads as it were wounded unto death; and his deadly wound was healed: and all the world wondered after the beast. And they worshipped the dragon, which gave power unto the beast, and they worshipped the beast, saying, Who is like unto the beast? who is able to make war with him?” Such, in all respects, is the analogy between the language of the prophecy and the ancient Babylonian type.
Do we find, then, anything corresponding to this in the religious history of the Roman empire after the fall of the old Paganism of that empire? Exactly in every respect. No sooner was Paganism legally abolished, the eternal fire of Vesta extinguished, and the old serpent cast down from the seat of power, where so long he had sat secure, than he tried the most vigorous means to regain his influence and authority. Finding that persecution of Christianity, as such, in the meantime would not do to destroy the church symbolised by the sun-clothed Woman, he made another tack (Rev 12:15): ”And the serpent cast out of his mouth a flood of water after the woman, that he might cause her to be carried away of the flood.” The symbol here is certainly very remarkable. If this was the dragon of fire, it might have been expected that it would have been represented, according to popular myths, as vomiting fire after the woman. But it is not so. It was a flood of water that he cast out of his mouth. What could this mean? As the water came out of the mouth of the dragon–that must mean doctrine, and of course, false doctrine. But is there nothing more specific than this? A single glance at the old Babylonian type will show that the water cast out of the mouth of the serpent must be the water of baptismal regeneration. Now, it was precisely at this time, when the old Paganism was suppressed, that the doctrine of regenerating men by baptism, which had been working in the Christian Church before, threatened to spread like a deluge over the face of the Roman empire. *
* From about AD 360, to the time of the Emperor Justinian, about 550, we have evidence both of the promulgation of this doctrine, and also of the deep hold it came at last to take of professing Christians.
It was then precisely that our Lord Jesus Christ began to be popularly called Ichthys, that is, ”the Fish,” manifestly to identify him with Dagon. At the end of the fourth century, and from that time forward, it was taught, that he who had been washed in the baptismal font was thereby born again, and made pure as the virgin snow.
This flood issued not merely from the mouth of Satan, the old serpent, but from the mouth of him who came to be recognised by the Pagans of Rome as the visible head of the old Roman Paganism. When the Roman fire-worship was suppressed, we have seen that the office of Pontifex Maximus, the head of that Paganism, was abolished. That was ”the wounding unto death” of the head of the Fiery Dragon. But scarcely had that head received its deadly wound, when it began to be healed again. Within a few years after the Pagan title of Pontifex had been abolished, it was revived, and that by the very Emperor that had abolished it, and was bestowed, with all the Pagan associations clustering around it, upon the Bishop of Rome, who, from that time forward, became the grand agent in pouring over professing Christendom, first the ruinous doctrine of baptismal regeneration, and then all the other doctrines of Paganism derived from ancient Babylon. When this Pagan title was bestowed on the Roman bishop, it was not as a mere empty title of honour it was bestowed, but as a title to which formidable power was annexed. To the authority of the Bishop of Rome in this new character, as Pontifex, when associated ”with five or seven other bishops” as his counsellors, bishops, and even metropolitans of foreign churches over extensive regions of the West, in Gaul not less than in Italy, were subjected; and civil pains were attached to those who refused to submit to his pontifical decisions. Great was the danger to the cause of truth and righteousness when such power was, by imperial authority, vested in the Roman bishop, and that a bishop so willing to give himself to the propagation of false doctrine. Formidable, however, as the danger was, the true Church, the Bride, the Lamb’s wife (so far as that Church was found within the bounds of the Western Empire), was wonderfully protected from it. That Church was for a time saved from the peril, not merely by the mountain fastnesses in which many of its devoted members found an asylum, as Jovinian, Vigilantius, and the Waldenses, and such-like faithful ones, in the wilderness among the Cottian Alps, and other secluded regions of Europe, but also not a little, by a signal interposition of Divine Providence in its behalf. That interposition is referred to in these words (Rev 12:16): ”The earth opened her mouth and swallowed up the flood, which the dragon cast out of his mouth.” What means the symbol of the ”earth’s opening its mouth”? In the natural world, when the earth opens its mouth, there is an earthquake; and an ”earthquake,” according to the figurative language of the Apocalypse, as all admit, just means a great political convulsion. Now, when we examine the history of the period in question, we find that the fact exactly agrees with the prefiguration; that soon after the Bishop of Rome because Pontiff, and, as Pontiff, set himself so zealously to bring in Paganism into the Church, those political convulsions began in the civil empire of Rome, which never ceased till the framework of that empire was broken up, and it was shattered to pieces. But for this the spiritual power of the Papacy might have been firmly established over all the nations of the West, long before the time it actually was so. It is clear, that immediately after Damasus, the Roman bishop, received his pontifical power, the predicted ”apostacy” (1 Tim 4:3), so far as Rome was concerned, was broadly developed. Then were men ”forbidden to marry,” * and ”commanded to abstain from meats.”
* The celibacy of the clergy was enacted by Syricius, Bishop of Rome, AD 385. (GIESELER)
Then, with a factitious doctrine of sin, a factitious holiness also was inculcated, and people were led to believe that all baptised persons were necessarily regenerated. Had the Roman Empire of the West remained under one civil head, backed by that civil head, the Bishop of Rome might very soon have infected all parts of that empire with the Pagan corruption he had evidently given himself up to propagate. Considering the cruelty with which Jovinian, and all who opposed the Pagan doctrines in regard to marriage and abstinence, were treated by the Pontifex of Rome, under favour of the imperial power, it may easily be seen how serious would have been the consequences to the cause of truth in the Western Empire had this state of matters been allowed to pursue its natural course. But now the great Lord of the Church interfered. The ”revolt of the Goths,” and the sack of Rome by Alaric the Goth in 410, gave that shock to the Roman Empire which issued, by 476, in its complete upbreaking and the extinction of the imperial power. Although, therefore, in pursuance of the policy previously inaugurated, the Bishop of Rome was formally recognised, by an imperial edict in 445, as ”Head of all the Churches of the West,” all bishops being commanded ”to hold and observe as a law whatever it should please the Bishop of Rome to ordain or decree”; the convulsions of the empire, and the extinction, soon thereafter, of the imperial power itself, to a large extent nullified the disastrous effects of this edict. The ”earth’s opening its mouth,” then–in other words, the breaking up of the Roman Empire into so many independent sovereignties–was a benefit to true religion, and prevented the flood of error and corruption, that had its source in Rome, from flowing as fast and as far as it would otherwise have done. When many different wills in the different countries were substituted for the one will of the Emperor, on which the Sovereign Pontiff leaned, the influence of that Pontiff was greatly neutralised. ”Under these circumstances,” says Gieseler, referring to the influence of Rome in the different kingdoms into which the empire was divided, ”under these circumstances, the Popes could not directly interfere in ecclesiastical matters; and their communications with the established Church of the country depended entirely on the royal pleasure.” The Papacy at last overcame the effects of the earthquake, and the kingdoms of the West were engulfed in that flood of error that came out of the mouth of the dragon. But the overthrow of the imperial power, when so zealously propping up the spiritual despotism of Rome, gave the true Church in the West a lengthened period of comparative freedom, which otherwise it could not have had. The Dark Ages would have come sooner, and the darkness would have been more intense, but for the Goths and Vandals, and the political convulsions that attended their irruptions. They were raised up to scourge an apostatising community, not to persecute the saints of the Most High, though these, too, may have occasionally suffered in the common distress. The hand of Providence may be distinctly seen, in that, at so critical a moment, the earth opened its mouth and helped the woman.
To return, however, to the memorable period when the pontifical title was bestowed on the Bishop of Rome. The circumstances in which that Pagan title was bestowed upon Pope Damasus, were such as might have been not a little trying to the faith and integrity of a much better man than he. Though Paganism was legally abolished in the Western Empire of Rome, yet in the city of the Seven Hills it was still rampant, insomuch that Jerome, who knew it well, writing of Rome at this very period, calls it ”the sink of all superstitions.” The consequence was, that, while everywhere else throughout the empire the Imperial edict for the abolition of Paganism was respected, in Rome itself it was, to a large extent, a dead letter. Symmachus, the prefect of the city, and the highest patrician families, as well as the masses of the people, were fanatically devoted to the old religion; and, therefore, the Emperor found it necessary, in spite of the law, to connive at the idolatry of the Romans. How strong was the hold that Paganism had in the Imperial city, even after the fire of Vesta was extinguished, and State support was withdrawn from the Vestals, the reader may perceive from the following words of Gibbon: ”The image and altar of Victory were indeed removed from the Senate-house; but the Emperor yet spared the statues of the gods which were exposed to public view; four hundred and twenty-four temples or chapels still remained to satisfy the devotion of the people, and in every quarter of Rome the delicacy of the Christians was offended by the fumes of idolatrous sacrifice.” Thus strong was Paganism in Rome, even after State support was withdrawn about 376. But look forward only about fifty years, and see what has become of it. The name of Paganism has almost entirely disappeared; insomuch that the younger Theodosius, in an edict issued AD 423, uses these words: ”The Pagans that remain, although now we may believe there are none.” The words of Gibbon in reference to this are very striking. While fully admitting that, notwithstanding the Imperial laws made against Paganism, ”no peculiar hardships” were imposed on ”the sectaries who credulously received the fables of Ovid, and obstinately rejected the miracles of the Gospel,” he expresses his surprise at the rapidity of the revolution that took place among the Romans from Paganism to Christianity. ”The ruin of Paganism,” he says–and his dates are from AD 378, the year when the Bishop of Rome was made Pontifex, to 395–”The ruin of Paganism, in the age of Theodosius, is perhaps the only example of the total extirpation of any ancient and popular superstition; and may therefore deserve to be considered as a singular event in the history of the human mind.”…After referring to the hasty conversion of the senate, he thus proceeds: ”The edifying example of the Anician family [in embracing Christianity] was soon imitated by the rest of the nobility…The citizens who subsisted by their own industry, and the populace who were supported by the public liberality, filled the churches of the Lateran and Vatican with an incessant throng of devout proselytes. The decrees of the senate, which proscribed the worship of idols, were ratified by the general consent of the Romans; the splendour of the capitol was defaced, and the solitary temples were abandoned to ruin and contempt. Rome submitted to the yoke of the Gospel…The generation that arose in the world, after the promulgation of Imperial laws, was ATTRACTED within the pale of the Catholic Church, and so RAPID, yet so GENTLE was the fall of Paganism, that only twenty-eight years after the death of Theodosius [the elder], the faint and minute vestiges were no longer visible to the eye of the legislator.” Now, how can this great and rapid revolution be accounted for? Is it because the Word of the Lord has had free course and been glorified? Then, what means the new aspect that the Roman Church has now begun to assume? In exact proportion as Paganism has disappeared from without the Church, in the very same proportion it appears within it. Pagan dresses for the priests, Pagan festivals for the people, Pagan doctrines and ideas of all sorts, are everywhere in vogue. The testimony of the same historian, who has spoken so decisively about the rapid conversion of the Romans to the profession of the Gospel, is not less decisive on this point. In his account of the Roman Church, under the head of ”Introduction of Pagan Ceremonies,” he thus speaks: ”As the objects of religion were gradually reduced to the standard of the imagination, the rites and ceremonies were introduced that seemed most powerfully to effect the senses of the vulgar. If, in the beginning of the fifth century, Tertullian or Lactantius had been suddenly raised from the dead, to assist at the festival of some popular saint or martyr, they would have gazed with astonishment and indignation on the profane spectacle which had succeeded to the pure and spiritual worship of a Christian congregation. As soon as the doors of the church were thrown open, they must have been offended by the smoke of incense, the perfume of flowers, and the glare of lamps and tapers, which diffused at noon-day a gaudy, superfluous, and, in their opinion, sacrilegious light.” Gibbon has a great deal more to the same effect. Now, can any one believe that this was accidental? No. It was evidently the result of that unprincipled policy, of which, in the course of this inquiry, we have already seen such innumerable instances on the part of the Papacy. *
* Gibbon distinctly admits this. ”It must ingenuously be confessed,” says he, ”that the ministers of the Catholic Church imitated the profane model they were so impatient to destroy.”
Pope Damasus saw that, in a city pre-eminently given to idolatry, if he was to maintain the Gospel pure and entire, he must be willing to bear the cross, to encounter hatred and ill-will, to endure hardness as a good soldier of Jesus Christ. On the other hand, he could not but equally see, that if bearing the title, around which, for so many ages, all the hopes and affections of Paganism had clustered, he should give its votaries reason to believe that he was willing to act up to the original spirit of that title, he might count on popularity, aggrandisement and glory. Which alternative, then, was Damasus likely to choose? The man that came into the bishopric of Rome, as a thief and a robber, over the dead bodies of above a hundred of his opponents, could not hesitate as to the election he should make. The result shows that he had acted in character, that, in assuming the Pagan title of Pontifex, he had set himself at whatever sacrifice of truth to justify his claims to that title in the eyes of the Pagans, as the legitimate representative of their long line of pontiffs. There is no possibility of accounting for the facts on any other supposition. It is evident also that he and his successors were ACCEPTED in that character by the Pagans, who, in flocking into the Roman Church, and rallying around the new Pontiff, did not change their creed or worship, but brought both into the Church along with them. The reader has seen how complete and perfect is the copy of the old Babylonian Paganism, which, under the patronage of the Popes, has been introduced into the Roman Church. He has seen that the god whom the Papacy worships as the Son of the Highest, is not only, in spite of a Divine command, worshipped under the form of an image, made, as in the days of avowed Paganism, by art and man’s device, but that attributes are ascribed to Him which are the very opposite of those which belong to the merciful Saviour, but which attributes are precisely those which were ascribed to Moloch, the fire-god, or Ala Mahozim, ”the god of fortifications.” He has seen that, about the very time when the Bishop of Rome was invested with the Pagan title of Pontifex, the Saviour began to be called Ichthys, or ”the Fish,” thereby identifying Him with Dagon, or the Fish-god; and that, ever since, advancing step by step, as circumstances would permit, what has gone under the name of the worship of Christ, has just been the worship of that same Babylonian divinity, with all its rites and pomps and ceremonies, precisely as in ancient Babylon. Lastly, he has seen that the Sovereign Pontiff of the so-called Christian Church of Rome has so wrought out the title bestowed upon him in the end of the fourth century, as to be now dignified, as for centuries he has been, with the very ”names of blasphemy” originally bestowed on the old Babylonian pontiffs. *
* The reader who has seen the first edition of this work, will perceive that, in the above reasoning, I found nothing upon the formal appointment by Gratian of the Pope as Pontifex, with direct authority over the Pagans, as was done in that edition. That is not because I do not believe that such an appointment was made, but because, at the present moment, some obscurity rests on the subject. The Rev. Barcroft Boake, a very learned minister of the Church of England in Ceylon, when in this country, communicated to me his researches on the subject, which have made me hesitate to assert that there was any formal authority given to the Bishop of Rome over the Pagans by Gratian. At the same time, I am still convinced that the original statement was substantially true. The late Mr. Jones, in the Journal of Prophecy, not only referred to the Appendix to the Codex Theodosianus, in proof of such an appointment, but, in elucidation of the words of the Codex, asserted in express terms that there was a contest for the office of Pontifex, and that there were two candidates, the one a Pagan, Symmachus, who had previously been Valentinian’s deputy, and the other the Bishop of Rome. (Quarterly Journal of Prophecy, Oct. 1852) I have not been able to find Mr. Jones’s authority for this statement; but the statement is so circumstantial, that it cannot easily be called in question without impugning the veracity of him that made it. I have found Mr. Jones in error on divers points, but in no error of such a nature as this; and the character of the man forbids such a supposition. Moreover, the language of the Appendix cannot easily admit of any other interpretation. But, even though there were no formal appointment of Bishop Damasus to a pontificate extending over the Pagans, yet it is clear that, by the rescript of Gratian (the authenticity of which is fully admitted by the accurate Gieseler), he was made the supreme spiritual authority in the Western Empire in all religious questions. When, therefore, in the year 400, Pagan priests were, by the Christian Emperor of the West, from political motives, ”acknowledged as public officers” (Cod. Theod., ad POMPEJANUM, Procons), these Pagan priests necessarily came under the jurisdiction of the Bishop of Rome, as there was then no other tribunal but his for determining all matters affecting religion. In the text, however I have made no allusion to this. The argument, as I think the reader will admit, is sufficiently decisive without it.
Now, if the circumstance in which the Pope has risen to all this height of power and blasphemous assumption, be compared with a prediction in Daniel, which, for want of the true key has never been understood, I think the reader will see how literally in the history of the Popes of Rome that prediction has been fulfilled. The prediction to which I allude is that which refers to what is commonly called the ”Wilful King” as described in Daniel 11:36, and succeeding verses. That ”Wilful King” is admitted on all hands to be a king that arises in Gospel times, and in Christendom, but has generally been supposed to be an Infidel Antichrist, not only opposing the truth but opposing Popery as well, and every thing that assumed the very name of Christianity. But now, let the prediction be read in the light of the facts that have passed in review before us, and it will be seen how very different is the case (v 36): ”And the king shall do according to his will; and he shall exalt himself and magnify himself above every god, and shall speak marvellous things against the God of gods, and shall prosper till the indignation be accomplished: for that that is determined shall be done. Neither shall he regard the god of his fathers, nor the desire of women, nor regard any god: for he shall magnify himself above all.” So far these words give an exact description of the Papacy, with its pride, its blasphemy, and forced celibacy and virginity. But the words that follow, according to any sense that the commentators have put upon them, have never hitherto been found capable of being made to agree either with the theory that the Pope was intended, or any other theory whatever. Let them, however, only be literally rendered, and compared with the Papal history, and all is clear, consistent, and harmonious. The inspired seer has declared that, in the Church of Christ, some one shall arise who shall not only aspire to a great height, but shall actually reach it, so that ”he shall do according to his will”; his will shall be supreme in opposition to all law, human and Divine. Now, if this king is to be a pretended successor of the fisherman of Galilee, the question would naturally arise, How could it be possible that he should ever have the means of rising to such a height of power? The words that follow give a distinct answer to that question: ”He shall not REGARD * any god, for he shall magnify himself above all. BUT, in establishing himself, shall he honour the god of fortifications (Ala Mahozim), and a god, whom his fathers knew not, shall he honour with gold and silver, and with precious stones and pleasant things. Thus shall he make into strengthening bulwarks ** [for himself] the people of a strange god, whom he shall acknowledge and increase with glory; and he shall cause them to rule over many, and he shall divide the land for gain.”
* The reader will observe, it is not said he shall not worship any god; the reverse is evident; but that he shall not regard any, that his own glory is his highest end.
** The word here is the same as above rendered ”fortifications.”
Such is the prophecy. Now, this is exactly what the Pope did. Self-aggrandisement has ever been the grand principle of the Papacy; and, in ”establishing” himself, it was just the ”god of Fortifications” that he honoured. The worship of that god he introduced into the Roman Church; and, by so doing, he converted that which otherwise would have been a source of weakness to him, into the very tower of his strength–he made the very Paganism of Rome by which he was surrounded the bulwark of his power. When once it was proved that the Pope was willing to adopt Paganism under Christian names, the Pagans and Pagan priests would be his most hearty and staunch defenders. And when the Pope began to wield lordly power over the Christians, who were the men that he would recommend–that he would promote–that he would advance to honour and power? Just the very people most devoted to ”the worship of the strange god” which he had introduced into the Christian Church. Gratitude and self-interest alike would conspire to this. Jovinian, and all who resisted the Pagan ideas and Pagan practices, were excommunicated and persecuted. Those only who were heartily attached to the apostacy (and none could now be more so than genuine Pagans) were favoured and advanced. Such men were sent from Rome in all directions, even as far as Britain, to restore the reign of Paganism–they were magnified with high titles, the lands were divided among them, and all to promote ”the gain” of the Romish see, to bring in ”Peter’s pence” from the ends of the earth to the Roman Pontiff. But it is still further said, that the self-magnifying king was to ”honour a god, whom his fathers knew not, with gold and silver and precious stones.” The principle on which transubstantiation was founded is unquestionably a Babylonian principle, but there is no evidence that that principle was applied in the way in which it has been by the Papacy. Certain it is, that we have evidence that no such wafer-god as the Papacy worships was ever worshipped in Pagan Rome. ”Was any man ever so mad,” says Cicero, who himself was a Roman augur and a priest–”was any man ever so mad as to take that which he feeds on for a god?” Cicero could not have said this if anything like wafer-worship had been established in Rome. But what was too absurd for Pagan Romans is no absurdity at all for the Pope. The host, or consecrated wafer, is the great god of the Romish Church. That host is enshrined in a box adorned with gold and silver and precious stones. And thus it is manifest that ”a god” whom even the Pope’s Pagan ”fathers knew not,” he at this day honours in the very way that the terms of the prediction imply that he would. Thus, in every respect, when the Pope was invested with the Pagan title of Pontifex, and set himself to make that title a reality, he exactly fulfilled the prediction of Daniel recorded more than 900 years before.
But to return to the Apocalyptic symbols. It was out of the mouth of the ”Fiery Dragon” that ”the flood of water” was discharged. The Pope, as he is now, was at the close of the fourth century the only representative of Belshazzar, or Nimrod, on the earth; for the Pagans manifestly ACCEPTED him as such. He was equally, of course, the legitimate successor of the Roman ”Dragon of fire.” When, therefore, on being dignified with the title of Pontifex, he set himself to propagate the old Babylonian doctrine of baptismal regeneration, that was just a direct and formal fulfilment of the Divine words, that the great Fiery Dragon should ”cast out of his mouth a flood of water to carry away the Woman with the flood.” He, and those who co-operated with him in this cause, paved the way for the erecting of that tremendous civil and spiritual despotism which began to stand forth full in the face of Europe in AD 606, when, amid the convulsions and confusions of the nations tossed like a tempestuous sea, the Pope of Rome was made Universal Bishop; and when the ten chief kingdoms of Europe recognised him as Christ’s Vicar upon earth, the only centre of unity, the only source of stability to their thrones. Then by his own act and deed, and by the consent of the UNIVERSAL PAGANISM of Rome, he was actually the representative of Dagon; and as he bears upon his head at this day the mitre of Dagon, so there is reason to believe he did then. *
* It is from this period only that the well-known 1260 days can begin to be counted; for not before did the Pope appear as Head of the ten-horned beast, and head of the Universal Church. The reader will observe that though the beast above referred to has passed through the sea, it still retains its primitive characteristic. The head of the apostacy at first was Kronos, ”The Horned One.” The head of the apostacy is Kronos still, for he is the beast ”with seven head and ten horns.”
Could there, then, be a more exact fulfilment of chapter 13:1 ”And I stood upon the sand of the sea, and saw a beast rise up out of the sea, having seven heads and ten horns, and upon his horns ten crowns, and upon his heads the names of blasphemy…And I saw one of his heads as it had been wounded to death; and his deadly wound was healed, and all the world wondered after the beast”?


The Two Babylons
Alexander Hislop
Chapter VII
Section III
The Beast from the Earth
This beast is presented to our notice (Rev 13:11): ”And I beheld another beast coming up out of the earth; and he had two horns like a lamb, and he spake as a serpent.” Though this beast is mentioned after the beast from the sea, it does not follow that he came into existence after the sea-beast. The work he did seems to show the very contrary; for it is by his instrumentality that mankind are led (v 12) ”to worship the first beast” after that beast had received the deadly wound, which shows that he must have been in existence before. The reason that he is mentioned second, is just because, as he exercises all the powers of the first beast, and leads all men to worship him, so he could not properly be described till that beast had first appeared on the stage. Now, in ancient Chaldea there was the type, also, of this. That god was called in Babylon Nebo, in Egypt Nub or Num, * and among the Romans Numa, for Numa Pompilius, the great priest-king of the Romans, occupied precisely the position of the Babylonian Nebo.
* In Egypt, especially among the Greek-speaking population, the Egyptian b frequently passed into an m.
Among the Etrurians, from whom the Romans derived the most of their rites, he was called Tages, and of this Tages it is particularly recorded, that just as John saw the beast under consideration ”come up out of the earth,” so Tages was a child suddenly and miraculously born out of a furrow or hole in the ground. In Egypt, this God was represented with the head and horns of a ram. In Etruria he seems to have been represented in a somewhat similar way; for there we find a Divine and miraculous child exhibited wearing the ram’s horns. The name Nebo, the grand distinctive name of this god, signifies ”The Prophet,” and as such, he gave oracles, practised augury, pretended to miraculous powers, and was an adept in magic. He was the great wonder-worker, and answered exactly to the terms of the prophecy, when it is said (v 13), ”he doeth great wonders, and causeth fire to come down from heaven in the sight of men.” It was in this very character that the Etrurian Tages was known; for it was he who was said to have taught the Romans augury, and all the superstition and wonder-working jugglery connected therewith. As in recent times, we hear of weeping images and winking Madonnas, and innumerable prodigies besides, continually occurring in the Romish Church, in proof of this papal dogma or that, so was it also in the system of Babylon. There is hardly a form of ”pious fraud” or saintly imposture practised at this day on the banks of the Tiber, that cannot be proved to have had its counterpart on the banks of the Euphrates, or in the systems that came from it. Has the image of the Virgin been seen to shed tears? Many a tear was shed by the Pagan images. To these tender-hearted idols Lucan alludes, when, speaking of the prodigies that occurred during the civil wars, he says:–
”Tears shed by gods, our country’s patrons,
And sweat from Lares, told the city’s woes.”
Virgil also refers to the same, when he says:–
”The weeping statues did the wars foretell,
And holy sweat from brazen idols fell.”
When in the consulship of Appius Claudius, and Marcus Perpenna, Publius Crassus was slain in a battle with Aristonicus, Apollo’s statue at Cumae shed tears for four days without intermission. The gods had also their merry moods, as well as their weeping fits. If Rome counts it a divine accomplishment for the sacred image of her Madonna to ”wink,” it was surely not less becoming in the sacred images of Paganism to relax their features into an occasional grin. That they did so, we have abundant testimony. Psellus tells us that, when the priests put forth their magic powers, ”then statues laughed, and lamps were spontaneously enkindled.” When the images made merry, however, they seemed to have inspired other feelings than those of merriment into the breasts of those who beheld them. ”The Theurgists,” says Salverte, ”caused the appearance of the gods in the air, in the midst of gaseous vapour, disengaged from fire. The Theurgis Maximus undoubtedly made use of a secret analogous to this, when, in the fumes of the incense which he burned before the statue of Hecate, the image was seen to laugh so naturally as to fill the spectators with terror.” There were times, however, when different feelings were inspired. Has the image of the Madonna been made to look benignantly upon a favoured worshipper, and send him home assured that his prayer was heard? So did the statues of the Egyptian Isis. They were so framed, that the goddess could shake the silver serpent on her forehead, and nod assent to those who had preferred their petitions in such a way as pleased her. We read of Romish saints that showed their miraculous powers by crossing rivers or the sea in most unlikely conveyances. Thus, of St. Raymond it is written that he was transported over the sea on his cloak. Paganism is not a whit behind in this matter; for it is recorded of a Buddhist saint, Sura Acharya, that, when ”he used to visit his flocks west of the Indus, he floated himself across the stream upon his mantle.” Nay, the gods and high priests of Paganism showed far more buoyancy than even this. There is a holy man, at this day, in the Church of Rome, somewhere on the Continent, who rejoices in the name of St. Cubertin, who so overflows with spirituality, that when he engages in his devotions there is no keeping his body down to the ground, but, spite of all the laws of gravity, it rises several feet into the air. So was it also with the renowned St. Francis of Assisi, Petrus a Martina, and Francis of Macerata, some centuries ago. But both St. Cubertin and St. Francis and his fellows are far from being original in this superhuman devotion. The priests and magicians in the Chaldean Mysteries anticipated them not merely by centuries, but by thousands of years. Coelius Rhodiginus says, ”that, according to the Chaldeans, luminous rays, emanating from the soul, do sometimes divinely penetrate the body, which is then of itself raised above the earth, and that this was the case with Zoroaster.” The disciples of Jamblichus asserted that they had often witnessed the same miracle in the case of their master, who, when he prayed was raised to the height of ten cubits from the earth. The greatest miracle which Rome pretends to work, is when, by the repetition of five magic words, she professes to bring down the body, blood, soul, and divinity of our Lord Jesus Christ from heaven, to make Him really and corporeally present in the sacrament of the altar. The Chaldean priests pretended, by their magic spells, in like manner, to bring down their divinities into their statues, so that their ”real presence” should be visibly manifested in them. This they called ”the making of gods”; and from this no doubt comes the blasphemous saying of the Popish priests, that they have power ”to create their Creator.” There is no evidence, so far as I have been able to find, that, in the Babylonian system, the thin round cake of wafer, the ”unbloody sacrifice of the mass,” was ever regarded in any other light than as a symbol, that ever it was held to be changed into the god whom it represented. But yet the doctrine of transubstantiation is clearly of the very essence of Magic, which pretended, on the pronunciation of a few potent words, to change one substance into another, or by a dexterous juggle, wholly to remove one substance, and to substitute another in its place. Further, the Pope, in the plenitude of his power, assumes the right of wielding the lightnings of Jehovah, and of blasting by his ”fulminations” whoever offends him. Kings, and whole nations, believing in this power, have trembled and bowed before him, through fear of being scathed by his spiritual thunders. The priests of Paganism assumed the very same power; and, to enforce the belief of their spiritual power, they even attempted to bring down the literal lightnings from heaven; yea, there seems some reason to believe that they actually succeeded, and anticipated the splendid discovery of Dr. Franklin. Numa Pompilius is said to have done so with complete success. Tullus Hostilius, his successor, imitating his example, perished in the attempt, himself and his whole family being struck, like Professor Reichman in recent times, with the lightning he was endeavouring to draw down. * Such were the wonder-working powers attributed in the Divine Word to the beast that was to come up from the earth; and by the old Babylonian type these very powers were all pretended to be exercised.
* The means appointed for drawing down the lightning were described in the books of the Etrurian Tages. Numa had copied from these books, and had left commentaries behind him on the subject, which Tallus had misunderstood, and hence the catastrophe.
Now, in remembrance of the birth of the god out of a ”hole in the earth,” the Mysteries were frequently celebrated in caves under ground. This was the case in Persia, where, just as Tages was said to be born out of the ground, Mithra was in like manner fabled to have been produced from a cave in the earth. *
* JUSTIN MARTYR. It is remarkable that, as Mithra was born out of a cave, so the idolatrous nominal Christians of the East represent our Saviour as having in like manner been born in a a cave. (See KITTO’s Cyclopoedia, ”Bethlehem”) There is not the least hint of such a thing in the Scripture.
Numa of Rome himself pretended to get all his revelations from the Nymph Egeria, in a cave. In these caves men were first initiated in the secret Mysteries, and by the signs and lying wonders there presented to them, they were led back, after the death of Nimrod, to the worship of that god in its new form. This Apocalyptic beast, then, that ”comes up out of the earth,” agrees in all respects with that ancient god born from a ”hole in the ground”; for no words could more exactly describe his doing than the words of the prediction (v 13): ”He doeth great wonders, and causeth fire to come down from heaven in the sight of men,…and he causeth the earth and them that dwell therein to worship the first beast, whose deadly wound was healed.” This wonder-working beast, called Nebo, or ”The Prophet,” as the prophet of idolatry, was, of course, the ”false prophet.” By comparing the passage before us with Revelation 19:20, it will be manifest that this beast that ”came up out of the earth” is expressly called by that very name: ”And the beast was taken, and with him the false prophet that wrought miracles before him, with which he deceived them that received the mark of the beast, and them that worshipped his image.” As it was the ”beast from the earth” that ”wrought miracles” before the first beast, this shows that ”the beast from the earth” is the ”false prophet”; in other words, is ”Nebo.”
If we examine the history of the Roman empire, we shall find that here also there is a precise accordance between type and antitype. When the deadly wound of Paganism was healed, and the old Pagan title of Pontiff was restored, it was, through means of the corrupt clergy, symbolised, as is generally believed, and justly under the image of a beast with horns, like a lamb; according to the saying of our Lord, ”Beware of false prophets, that shall come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves.” The clergy, as a corporate body, consisted of two grand divisions–the regular and secular clergy answering to the two horns or powers of the beast, and combining also, at a very early period, both temporal and spiritual powers. The bishops, as heads of these clergy, had large temporal powers, long before the Pope gained his temporal crown. We have the distinct evidence of both Guizot and Gibbon to this effect. After showing that before the fifth century, the clergy had not only become distinct from, but independent of the people, Guizot adds: ”The Christian clergy had moreover another and very different source of influence. The bishops and priests became the principal municipal magistrates…If you open the code, either of Theodosius or Justinian, you will find numerous regulations which remit municipal affairs to the clergy and the bishops.” Guizot makes several quotations. The following extract from the Justinian code is sufficient to show how ample was the civil power bestowed upon the bishops: ”With respect to the yearly affairs of cities, whether they concern the ordinary revenues of the city, either from funds arising from the property of the city, or from private gifts or legacies, or from any other source; whether public works, or depots of provisions or aqueducts, or the maintenance of baths or ports, or the construction of walls or towers, or the repairing of bridges or roads, or trials, in which the city may be engaged in reference to public or private interests, we ordain as follows:–The very pious bishop, and three notables, chosen from among the first men of the city, shall meet together; they shall each year examine the works done; they shall take care that those who conduct them, or who have conducted them, shall regulate them with precision, render their accounts, and show that they have duly performed their engagements in the administration, whether of the public monuments, or of the sums appointed for provisions or baths, or of expenses in the maintenance of roads, aqueducts, or any other work.” Here is a large list of functions laid on the spiritual shoulders of ”the very pious bishop,” not one of which is even hinted at in the Divine enumeration of the duties of a bishop, as contained in the Word of God. (See 1 Timothy 3:1-7; and Titus 1:5-9.) How did the bishops, who were originally appointed for purely spiritual objects, contrive to grasp at such a large amount of temporal authority? From Gibbon we get light as to the real origin of what Guizot calls this ”prodigious power.” The author of the Decline and Fall shows, that soon after Constantine’s time, ”the Church” [and consequently the bishops, especially when they assumed to be a separate order from the other clergy] gained great temporal power through the right of asylum, which had belonged to the Pagan temples, being transferred by the Emperors to the Christian churches. His words are: ”The fugitive, and even the guilty, were permitted to implore either the justice or mercy of the Deity and His ministers.” Thus was the foundation laid of the invasion of the rights of the civil magistrate by ecclesiastics, and thus were they encouraged to grasp at all the powers of the State. Thus, also, as is justly observed by the authoress of Rome in the 19th Century, speaking of the right of asylum, were ”the altars perverted into protection towards the very crimes they were raised to banish from the world.” This is a very striking thing, as showing how the temporal power of the Papacy, in its very first beginnings, was founded on ”lawlessness,” and is an additional proof to the many that might be alleged, that the Head of the Roman system, to whom all bishops are subject is indeed ”The Lawless One” (2 Thess 2:8), predicted in Scripture as the recognised Head of the ”Mystery of Iniquity.” All this temporal power came into the hands of men, who, while professing to be ministers of Christ, and followers of the Lamb, were seeking simply their own aggrandisement, and, to secure that aggrandisement, did not hesitate to betray the cause which they professed to serve. The spiritual power which they wielded over the souls of men, and the secular power which they gained in the affairs of the world, were both alike used in opposition to the cause of pure religion and undefiled. At first these false prophets, in leading men astray, and seeking to unite Paganism and Christianity, wrought under-ground, mining like the mole in the dark, and secretly perverting the simple, according to the saying of Paul, ”The Mystery of Iniquity doth already work.” But by-and-by, towards the end of the fourth century, when the minds of men had been pretty well prepared, and the aspects of things seemed to be favourable for it, the wolves in sheep’s clothing appeared above ground, brought their secret doctrines and practices, by little and little, into the light of day, and century after century, as their power increased, by means of all ”deceivableness of unrighteousness,” and ”signs and lying wonders,” deluded the minds of the worldly Christians, made them believe that their anathema was equivalent to the curse of God; in other words, that they could ”bring down fire from heaven,” and thus ”caused the earth, and them that dwelt therein, to worship the beast whose deadly wound was healed.” *
* Though the Pope be the great Jupiter Tonans of the Papacy, and ”fulminates” from the Vatican, as his predecessor was formerly believed to do from the Capitol, yet it is not he in reality that brings down the fire from heaven, but his clergy. But for the influence of the clergy in everywhere blinding the minds of the people, the Papal thunders would be but ”bruta fulmina” after all. The symbol, therefore, is most exact, when it attributes the ”bringing down of the fire from heaven,” to the beast from the earth, rather than to the beast from the sea.
When ”the deadly wound” of the Pagan beast was healed, and the beast from the sea appeared, it is said that this beast from the earth became the recognised, accredited executor of the will of the great sea beast (v 12), ”And he exerciseth all the power of the first beast before him,” literally ”in his presence”–under his inspection. Considering who the first beast is, there is great force in this expression ”in his presence.” The beast that comes up from the sea, is ”the little horn,” that ”has eyes like the eyes of man” (Dan 7:8); it is Janus Tuens, ”All-seeing Janus,” in other words, the Universal Bishop or ”Universal Overseer,” who, from his throne on the seven hills, by means of the organised system of the confessional, sees and knows all that is done, to be the utmost bounds of his wide dominion. Now, it was just exactly about the time that the Pope became universal bishop, that the custom began of systematically investing the chief bishops of the Western empire with the Papal livery, the pallium, ”for the purpose,” says Gieseler, ”of symbolising and strengthening their connection with the Church of Rome.” *
* GIESELER. From Gieseler we learn that so early as 501, the Bishop of Rome had laid the foundation of the corporation of bishops by the bestowal of the pallium; but, at the same time, he expressly states that it was only about 602, at the `63 ascent of Phocas to the imperial throne–that Phocas that made the Pope Universal Bishop–that the Popes began to bestow the pallium, that is, of course, systematically, and on a large scale.
That pallium, worn on the shoulders of the bishops, while on the one hand it was the livery of the Pope, and bound those who received it to act as the functionaries of Rome, deriving all their authority from him, and exercising it under his superintendence, as the ”Bishop of bishops,” on the other hand, was in reality the visible investiture of these wolves with the sheep’s clothing. For what was the pallium of the Papal bishop? It was a dress made of wool, blessed by the Pope, taken from the holy lambs kept by the nuns of St. Agnes, and woven by their sacred hands, that it might be bestowed on those whom the Popes delighted to honour, for the purpose, as one of themselves expressed it, of ”joining them to our society in the one pastoral sheepfold.” *
* GIESELER, ”Papacy”). The reader who peruses the early letters of the Popes in bestowing the pallium, will not fail to observe the wide difference of meaning between ”the one pastoral sheepfold” above referred to, and ”the one sheepfold” of our Lord. The former really means a sheepfold consisting of pastors or shepherds. The papal letters unequivocally imply the organisation of the bishops, as a distinct corporation, altogether independent of the Church, and dependent only on the Papacy, which seems remarkably to agree with the terms of the prediction in regard to the beast from the earth.
Thus commissioned, thus ordained by the universal Bishop, they did their work effectually, and brought the earth and them that dwelt in it, ”to worship the beast that received the wound by a sword and did live.” This was a part of this beast’s predicted work. But there was another, and not less important, which remains for consideration.


The Two Babylons
Alexander Hislop
Chapter VII
Section IV
The Image of the Beast
Not merely does the beast from the earth lead the world to worship the first beast, but (v 14) he prevails on them that dwell on the earth to make ”an IMAGE to the beast, which had the wound by a sword, and did live.” In meditating for many years on what might be implied in ”the image of the beast,” I could never find the least satisfaction in all the theories that had ever been propounded, till I fell in with an unpretending but valuable work, which I have noticed already, entitled An Original Interpretation of the Apocalypse. That work, evidently the production of a penetrating mind deeply read in the history of the Papacy, furnished at once the solution of the difficulty. There the image of the beast is pronounced to be the Virgin Mother, or the Madonna. This at first sight may appear a very unlikely solution; but when it is brought into comparison with the religious history of Chaldea, the unlikelihood entirely disappears. In the old Babylonian Paganism, there was an image of the Beast from the sea; and when it is known what that image was, the question will, I think, be fairly decided. When Dagon was first set up to be worshipped, while he was represented in many different ways, and exhibited in many different characters, the favourite form in which he was worshipped, as the reader well knows, was that of a child in his mother’s arms. In the natural course of events, the mother came to be worshipped along with the child, yea, to be the favourite object of worship. To justify this worship, as we have already seen, that mother, of course, must be raised to divinity, and divine powers and prerogatives ascribed to her. Whatever dignity, therefore, the son was believed to possess a like dignity was ascribed to her. Whatever name of honour he bore, a similar name was bestowed upon her. He was called Belus, ”the Lord”; she, Beltis, ”My Lady.” He was called Dagon, ”the Merman”; she, Derketo, ”the Mermaid.” He, as the World-king, wore the bull’s horns; she, as we have already seen, on the authority of Sanchuniathon, put on her own head a bull’s head, as the ensign of royalty. *
* EUSEBIUS, Proeparatio Evangelii. This statement is remarkable, as showing that the horns which the great goddess wore were really intended to exhibit her as the express image of Ninus, or ”the Son.” Had she worn merely the cow’s horns, it might have been supposed that these horns were intended only to identify her with the moon. But the bull’s horns show that the intention was to represent her as equal in her sovereignty with Nimrod, or Kronos, the ”Horned one.”
He, as the Sun-god, was called Beel-samen, ”Lord of heaven”; she, as the Moon-goddess, Melkat-ashemin, ”Queen of heaven.” He was worshipped in Egypt as the ”Revealer of goodness and truth”; she, in Babylon, under the symbol of the Dove, as the goddess of gentleness and mercy, the ”Mother of gracious acceptance,” ”merciful and benignant to men.” He, under the name of Mithra, was worshipped as Mesites, or ”the Mediator”; she, as Aphrodite, or the ”Wrath-subduer,” was called Mylitta, ”the Mediatrix.” He was represented as crushing the great serpent under his heel; she, as bruising the serpent’s head in her hand. He, under the name Janus, bore a key as the opener and shutter of the gates of the invisible world. She, under the name of Cybele, was invested with a like key, as an emblem of the same power. *
* TOOKE’S Pantheon. That the key of Cybele, in the esoteric story, had a corresponding meaning to that of Janus, will appear from the character above assigned to her as the Mediatrix.
He, as the cleanser from sin, was called the ”Unpolluted god”; she, too, had the power to wash away sin, and, though the mother of the seed, was called the ”Virgin, pure and undefiled.” He was represented as ”Judge of the dead”; she was represented as standing by his side, at the judgment-seat, in the unseen world. He, after being killed by the sword, was fabled to have risen again, and ascended up to heaven. She, too, though history makes her to have been killed with the sword by one of her own sons, * was nevertheless in the myth, said to have been carried by her son bodily to heaven, and to have been made Pambasileia, ”Queen of the universe.” Finally, to clench the whole, the name by which she was now known was Semele, which, in the Babylonian language, signifies ”THE IMAGE.” ** Thus, in every respect, to the very least jot and tittle, she became the express image of the Babylonian ”beast that had the wound by a sword, and did live.”
* In like manner, Horus, in Egypt, is said to have cut off his mother’s head, as Bel in Babylon also cut asunder the great primeval goddess of the Babylonians. (BUNSEN)
** Apollodorus states that Bacchus, on carrying his mother to heaven, called her Thuone, which was just the feminine of his own name, Thuoenus–in Latin Thyoneus. (OVID, Metam.) Thuoneus is evidently from the passive participle of Thn, ”to lament,” a synonym for ”Bacchus,” ”The lamented god.” Thuone, in like manner, is ”The lamented goddess.” The Roman Juno was evidently known in this very character of the ”Image”; for there was a temple erected to her in Rome, on the Capitoline hill, under the name of ”Juno Moneta.” Moneta is the emphatic form of one of the Chaldee words for an ”image”; and that this was the real meaning of the name, will appear from the fact that the Mint was contained in the precincts of that temple. (See SMITH’S ”Juno”) What is the use of a mint but just to stamp ”images”? Hence the connection between Juno and the Mint.
After what the reader has already seen in a previous part of this work, it is hardly necessary to say that it is this very goddess that is now worshipped in the Church of Rome under the name of Mary. Though that goddess is called by the name of the mother of our Lord, all the attributes given to her are derived simply from the Babylonian Madonna, and not from the Virgin Mother of Christ. *
* The very way in which the Popish Madonna is represented is plainly copied from the idolatrous representations of the Pagan goddess. The great god used to be represented as sitting or standing in the cup of a Lotus-flower. In India, the very same mode of representation is common; Brahma being often seen seated on a Lotus-flower, said to have sprung from the navel of Vishnu. The great goddess, in like manner, must have a similar couch; and, therefore, in India, we find Lakshmi, the ”Mother of the Universe,” sitting on a Lotus, borne by a tortoise. Now, in this very thing, also Popery has copied from its Pagan model; for, in the Pancarpium Marianum the Virgin and child are represented sitting in the cup of a tulip.
There is not one line or one letter in all the Bible to countenance the idea that Mary should be worshipped, that she is the ”refuge of sinners,” that she was ”immaculate,” that she made atonement for sin when standing by the cross, and when, according to Simeon, ”a sword pierced through her own soul also”; or that, after her death, she was raised from the dead and carried in glory to heaven. But in the Babylonian system all this was found; and all this is now incorporated in the system of Rome. The ”sacred heart of Mary” is exhibited as pierced through with a sword, in token, as the apostate Church teaches, that her anguish at the crucifixion was as true an atonement as the death of Christ;–for we read in the Devotional office or Service-book, adopted by the ”Sodality of the sacred heart,” such blasphemous words as these, ”Go, then, devout client! go to the heart of Jesus, but let your way be through the heart of Mary; the sword of grief which pierced her soul opens you a passage; enter by the wound which love has made”; *–again we hear one expounder of the new faith, like M. Genoude in France, say that ”Mary was the repairer of the guilt of Eve, as our Lord was the repairer of the guilt of Adam”; and another–Professor Oswald of Paderbon–affirm that Mary was not a human creature like us, that she is ”the Woman, as Christ is the Man,” that ”Mary is co-present in the Eucharist, and that it is indisputable that, according to the Eucharistic doctrine of the Church, this presence of Mary in the Eucharist is true and real, not merely ideal or figurative”; and, further, we read in the Pope’s decree of the Immaculate Conception, that that same Madonna, for this purpose ”wounded with the sword,” rose from the dead, and being assumed up on high, became Queen of Heaven. If all this be so, who can fail to see that in that apostate community is to be found what precisely answers to the making and setting up in the heart of Christendom, of an ”Image to the beast that had the wound by a sword and did live”?
* Memoir of Rev. Godfrey Massy. In the Paradisus sponsi et sponsoe, by the author of Pancarpium Marianum, the following words, addressed to the Virgin, occur in illustration of a plate representing the crucifixion, and Mary, at the foot of the Cross, with the sword in her breast, ”Thy beloved son did sacrifice his flesh; thou thy soul–yea, both body and soul.” This does much more than put the sacrifice of the Virgin on a level with that of the Lord Jesus, it makes it greater far. This, in 1617, was the creed only of Jesuitism; now there is reason to believe it to be the general creed of the Papacy.
If the inspired terms be consulted, it will be seen that this was to be done by some public general act of apostate Christendom; (v 14), ”Saying to them that dwell on the earth, that they should make an image to the beast”; and they made it. Now, here is the important fact to be observed, that this never was done, and this never could have been done, till eight years ago; for this plain reason, that till then the Madonna of Rome was never recognised as combining all the characters that belonged to the Babylonian ”IMAGE of the beast.” Till then it was not admitted even in Rome, though this evil leaven had been long working, and that strongly, that Mary was truly immaculate, and consequently she could not be the perfect counterpart of the Babylonian Image. What, however, had never been done before, was done in December, 1854. Then bishops from all parts of Christendom, and representatives from the ends of the earth, met in Rome; and with only four dissentient voices, it was decreed that Mary, the mother of God, who died, rose from the dead, and ascended into heaven, should henceforth be worshipped as the Immaculate Virgin, ”conceived and born without sin.” This was the formal setting up of the Image of the beast, and that by the general consent of ”the men that dwell upon the earth.” Now, this beast being set up, it is said, that the beast from the earth gives life and speech to the Image, implying, first, that it has neither life nor voice in itself; but that, nevertheless, through means of the beast from the earth, it is to have both life and voice, and to be an effective agent of the Papal clergy, who will make it speak exactly as they please. Since the Image has been set up, its voice has been everywhere heard throughout the Papacy. Formerly decrees ran less or more in the name of Christ. Now all things are pre-eminently done in the name of the Immaculate Virgin. Her voice is everywhere heard–her voice is supreme. But, be it observed, when that voice is heard, it is not the voice of mercy and love, it is the voice of cruelty and terror. The decrees that come forth under the name of the Image, are to this effect (v 17), that ”no man might buy or sell, save he that had the mark, or the name of the beast, or the number of his name.” No sooner is the image set up than we see this very thing begun to be carried out. What was the Concordat in Austria, that so speedily followed, but this very thing? That concordat, through the force of unexpected events that have arisen, has not yet been carried into effect; but if it were, the results would just be what is predicted–that no man in the Austrian dominions should ”buy or sell” without the mark in some shape or other. And the very fact of such an intolerant concordat coming so speedily on the back of the Decree of the Immaculate Conception, shows what is the natural fruit of that decree. The events that soon thereafter took place in Spain showed the powerful working of the same persecuting spirit there also. During the last few years, the tide of spiritual despotism might have seemed to be effectually arrested; and many, no doubt, have indulged the persuasion that, crippled as the temporal sovereignty of the Papacy is, and tottering as it seems to be, that power, or its subordinates, could never persecute more. But there is an amazing vitality in the Mystery of Iniquity; and no one can ever tell beforehand what apparent impossibilities it may accomplish in the way of arresting the progress of truth and liberty, however promising the aspect of things may be. Whatever may become of the temporal sovereignty of the Roman states, it is by no means so evident this day, as to many it seemed only a short while ago, that the overthrow of the spiritual power of the Papacy is imminent, and that its power to persecute is finally gone. I doubt not but that many, constrained by the love and mercy of God, will yet obey the heavenly voice, and flee out of the doomed communion, before the vials of Divine wrath descend upon it. But if I have been right in the interpretation of this passage, then it follows that it must yet become more persecuting than ever it has been, and that that intolerance, which, immediately after the setting up of the Image, began to display itself in Austria and Spain, shall yet spread over all Europe; for it is not said that the Image of the beast should merely decree, but should ”cause that as many as would not worship the Image of the beast should be killed” (v 15). When this takes place, that evidently is the time when the language of verse 8 is fulfilled, ”And all that dwell on the earth shall worship the beast, whose names are not written in the book of life of the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world.” It is impossible to get quit of this by saying, ”This refers to the Dark Ages; this was fulfilled before Luther.” I ask, had the men who dwelt on the earth set up the Image of the beast before Luther’s days? Plainly not. The decree of the Immaculate Conception was the deed of yesterday. The prophecy, then, refers to our own times–to the period on which the Church is now entering. In other words, the slaying of the witnesses, the grand trial of the saints, IS STILL TO COME. (see note below)
____________________
The Slaying of the Witnesses
Is it past, or is it still to come? This is a vital question. The favourite doctrine at this moment is, that it is past centuries ago, and that no such dark night of suffering to the saints of God can ever come again, as happened just before the era of the Reformation. This is the cardinal principle of a work that has just appeared, under the title of The Great Exodus, which implies, that however much the truth may be assailed, however much the saints of God may be threatened, however their fears may be aroused, they have no real reason to fear, for that the Red Sea will divide, the tribes of the Lord will pass through dry shod, and all their enemies, like Pharaoh and his host, shall sink in overwhelming ruin. If the doctrine maintained by many of the soberest interpreters of Scripture for a century past, including such names as Brown of Haddington, Thomas Scott, and others, be well founded-viz., that the putting down of the testimony of the witnesses is till to come, this theory must not only be a delusion, but a delusion of most fatal tendency–a delusion that by throwing professors off their guard, and giving them an excuse for taking their ease, rather than standing in the high places of the field, and bearing bold and unflinching testimony for Christ, directly paves the way for that very extinction of the testimony which is predicted. I enter not into any historical disquisition as to the question, whether, as a matter of fact, it was true that the witnesses were slain before Luther appeared. Those who wish to see an historical argument on the subject may see it in the Red Republic, which I venture to think has not yet been answered. Neither do I think it worth while particularly to examine the assumption of Dr. Wylie, and I hold it to be a pure and gratuitous assumption, that the 1260 days during which the saints of God in Gospel times were to suffer for righteousness’ sake, has any relation whatever, as a half period, to a whole, symbolised by the ”Seven times” that passed over Nebuchadnezzar when he was suffering and chastened for his pride and blasphemy, as the representative of the ”world power.” *
* The author does not himself make the humiliation of the Babylonian king a type of the humiliation of the Church. How then can he establish any typical relation between the ”seven times” in the one case, and the ”seven times” in the other? He seems to think it quite enough to establish that relation, if he can find one point of resemblance between Nebuchadnezzar, the humbled despot, and the ”world-power” that oppresses the Church during the two periods of ”seven times” respectively. That one point is the ”madness” of the one and the other. It might be asked, Was, then, the ”world-power” in its right mind before ”the seven times” began? But waiving that, here is the vital objection to this view: The madness in the case of Nebuchadnezzar was simply an affliction; in the other it was sin. The madness of Nebuchadnezzar did not, so far as we know, lead him to oppress a single individual; the madness of the ”world-power,” according to the theory, is essentially characterised by the oppression of the saints. Where, then, can there be the least analogy between the two cases? The ”seven times” of the Babylonian king were seven times of humiliation, and humiliation alone. The suffering monarch cannot be a type of the suffering Church; and still less can his ”seven times” of deepest humiliation, when all power and glory was taken from him, be a type of the ”seven times” of the ”world-power,” when that ”world-power” was to concentrate in itself all the glory and grandeur of the earth. This is one fatal objection to this theory. Then let the reader only look at the following sentence from the work under consideration, and compare it with historical fact, and he will see still more how unfounded the theory is: ”It follows undeniably,” says the author, ”that as the Church is to be tyrannised over by the idolatrous power throughout the whole of the seven times, she will be oppressed during the first half of the ‘seven times,’ by idolatry in the form of Paganism, and during the last half by idolatry in the form of Popery.” Now, the first half, or 1260 years, during which the Church was to be oppressed by Pagan idolatry, ran out exactly, it is said, in AD 530 or 532; when suddenly Justinian changed the scene, and brought the new oppressor on the stage. But I ask where was the ”world-power” to be found up to 530, maintaining ”idolatry in the form of Paganism”? From the time of Gratian at least, who, about 376, formally abolished the worship of the gods, and confiscated their revenues, where was there any such Pagan power to persecute? There is certainly a very considerable interval between 376 and 532. The necessities of the theory require that Paganism, and that avowed Paganism, be it observed, shall be persecuting the Church straight away till 532; but for 156 years there was no such thing as a Pagan ”world-power” in existence to persecute the Church. ”The legs of the lame,” says Solomon, ”are not equal”; and if the 1260 years of Pagan persecution lack no less that 156 years of the predicted period, surely it must be manifest that the theory halts very much on one side at least. But I ask, do the facts agree with the theory, even in regard to the running out of the second 1260 years in 1792, at the period of the French Revolution? If the 1260 years of Papal oppression terminated then, and if then the Ancient of days came to begin the final judgment on the beast, He came also to do something else. This will appear from the language of Daniel 7:21, 22: ”I beheld, and the same horn made war with the saints, and prevailed against them; until the Ancient of days came, and judgment was given to the saints of the Most High; and the time came that the saints possessed the kingdom.” This language implies that the judgment on the little horn, and the putting of the saints in possession ”of the kingdom” are contemporaneous events. Long has the rule of the kingdoms of this world been in the hands of worldly men, that knew not God nor obeyed Him; but now, when He to whom the kingdom belongs comes to inflict judgment on His enemies, He comes also to transfer the rule of the kingdoms of this world from the hands of those who have abused it, into the hand of those that fear God and govern their public conduct by His revealed will. This is evidently the meaning of the Divine statement. Now, on the supposition that 1792 was the predicted period of the coming of the Ancient of days, it follows that, ever since, the principles of God’s Word must have been leavening the governments of Europe more and more, and good and holy men, of the spirit of Daniel and Nehemiah, must have been advanced to the high places of power. But has it been so in point of fact? Is there one nation in all Europe that acts on Scriptural principles at this day? Does Britain itself do so? Why, it is notorious that it was just three years after the reign of righteousness, according to this theory, must have commenced that that unprincipled policy began that has left hardly a shred of appearance of respect for the honour of the ”Prince of the Kings of the earth” in the public rule of this nation. It was in 1795 that Pitt, and the British Parliament, passed the Act for the erecting of the Roman Catholic College of Maynooth, which formed the beginning of a course that, year by year, has lifted the Man of Sin into a position of power in this land, that threatens, if Divine mercy do not miraculously interfere, to bring us speedily back again under complete thraldom to Antichrist. Yet, according to the theory of The Great Exodus, the very opposite of this ought to have been the case.
But to this only I call the reader’s attention, that even on the theory of Dr. Wylie himself, the witnesses of Christ could not possibly have finished their testimony before the Decree of the Immaculate Conception came forth. The theory of Dr. Wylie, and those who take the same general view as he, is, that the ”finishing of the testimony,” means ”completing the elements” of the testimony, bearing a full and complete testimony against the errors of Rome. Dr. Wylie himself admits that ”the dogma of the ‘Immaculate Conception’ [which was given forth only during the last few years] declares Mary truly ‘divine,’ and places her upon the altars of Rome as practically the sole and supreme object of worship” (The Great Exodus). This was NEVER done before, and therefore the errors and blasphemies of Rome were not complete until that decree had gone forth, if even then. Now, if the corruption and blasphemy of Rome were ”incomplete” up to our own day, and if they have risen to a height which was never witnessed before, as all men instinctively felt and declared, when that decree was issued, how could the testimony of the witnesses be ”complete” before Luther’s day! It is nothing to say that the principle and the germ of this decree were in operation long before. The same thing may be said of all the leading errors of Rome long before Luther’s day. They were all in essence and substance very broadly developed, from near the time when Gregory the Great commanded the image of the Virgin to be carried forth in the processions that supplicated the Most High to remove the pestilence from Rome, when it was committing such havoc among its citizens. But that does in no wise prove that they were ”complete,” or that the witnesses of Christ could then ”finish their testimony” by bearing a full and ”complete testimony” against the errors and corruptions of the Papacy. I submit this view of the matter to every intelligent reader for his prayerful consideration. If we have not ”understanding of the times,” it is vain to expect that we ”shall know what Israel ought to do.” If we are saying ”Peace and safety,” when trouble is at hand, or underrating the nature of that trouble, we cannot be prepared for the grand struggle when that struggle shall come.


The Two Babylons
Alexander Hislop
Chapter VII
Section V
The Name of the Beast, the Number of His Name–
The Invisible Head of the Papacy
Dagon and the Pope being now identified, this brings us naturally and easily to the long-sought name and number of the beast, and confirms, by entirely new evidence, the old Protestant view of the subject. The name ”Lateinos” has been generally accepted by Protestant writers, as having many elements of probability to recommend it. But yet there has been always found a certain deficiency, and it has been felt that something was wanting to put it beyond all possibility of doubt. Now, looking at the subject from the Babylonian point of view, we shall find both the name and number of the beast brought home to us in such a way as leaves nothing to be desired on the point of evidence. Osiris, or Nimrod, whom the Pope represents, was called by many different titles, and therefore, as Wilkinson remarks, he was much in the same position as his wife, who was called ”Myrionymus,” the goddess with ”ten thousand names.” Among these innumerable names, how shall we ascertain the name at which the Spirit of God points in the enigmatical language that speaks of the name of the beast, and the number of his name? If we know the Apocalyptic name of the system, that will lead us to the name of the head of the system. The name of the system is ”Mystery” (Rev 17:5). Here, then, we have the key that at once unlocks the enigma. We have now only to inquire what was the name by which Nimrod was known as the god of the Chaldean Masteries. That name, as we have seen, was Saturn. Saturn and Mystery are both Chaldean words, and they are correlative terms. As Mystery signifies the Hidden system, so Saturn signifies the Hidden god. *
* In the Litany of the Mass, the worshippers are taught thus to pray: ”God Hidden, and my Saviour, have mercy upon us.” (M’GAVIN’S Protestant) Whence can this invocation of the ”God Hidden” have come, but from the ancient worship of Saturn, the ”Hidden God”? As the Papacy has canonised the Babylonian god by the name of St. Dionysius, and St. Bacchus, the ”martyr,” so by this very name of ”Satur” is he also enrolled in the calendar; for March 29th is the festival of ”St. Satur,” the martyr. (CHAMBER’S Book of Days)
To those who were initiated the god was revealed; to all else he was hidden. Now, the name Saturn in Chaldee is pronounced Satur; but, as every Chaldee scholar knows, consists only of four letters, thus–Stur. This name contains exactly the Apocalyptic number 666:–
S = 060
T = 400
U = 006
R = 200
If the Pope is, as we have seen, the legitimate representative of Saturn, the number of the Pope, as head of the Mystery of Iniquity, is just 666. But still further it turns out, as shown above, that the original name of Rome itself was Saturnia, ”the city of Saturn.” This is vouched alike by Ovid, by Pliny, and by Aurelius Victor. Thus, then, the Pope has a double claim to the name and number of the beast. He is the only legitimate representative of the original Saturn at this day in existence, and he reigns in the very city of the seven hills where the Roman Saturn formerly reigned; and, from his residence in which, the whole of Italy was ”long after called by his name,” being commonly named ”the Saturnian land.” But what bearing, it may be said, has this upon the name Lateinos, which is commonly believed to be the ”name of the beast”? Much. It proves that the common opinion is thoroughly well-founded. Saturn and Lateinos are just synonymous, having precisely the same meaning, and belonging equally to the same god. The reader cannot have forgotten the lines of Virgil, which showed that Lateinos, to whom the Romans or Latin race traced back their lineage, was represented with a glory around his head, to show that he was a ”child of the Sun.” Thus, then, it is evident that, in popular opinion, the original Lateinos had occupied the very same position as Saturn did in the Mysteries, who was equally worshipped as the ”offspring of the Sun.” Moreover, it is evident that the Romans knew that the name ”Lateinos” signifies the ”Hidden One,” for their antiquarians invariably affirm that Latium received its name from Saturn ”lying hid” there. On etymological grounds, then, even on the testimony of the Romans, Lateinos is equivalent to the ”Hidden One”; that is, to Saturn, the ”god of Mystery.” *
* Latium Latinus (the Roman form of the Greek Lateinos), and Lateo, ”to lie hid,” all alike come from the Chaldee ”Lat,” which has the same meaning. The name ”lat,” or the hidden one, had evidently been given, as well as Saturn, to the great Babylonian god. This is evident from the name of the fish Latus, which was worshipped along with the Egyptian Minerva, in the city of Latopolis in Egypt, now Esneh (WILKINSON), that fish Latus evidently just being another name for the fish-god Dagon. We have seen that Ichthys, or the Fish, was one of the names of Bacchus; and the Assyrian goddess Atergatis, with her son Ichthys is said to have been cast into the lake of Ascalon. That the sun-god Apollo had been known under the name of Lat, may be inferred from the Greek name of his mother-wife Leto, or in Doric, Lato, which is just the feminine of Lat. The Roman name Latona confirms this, for it signifies ”The lamenter of Lat,” as Bellona signifies ”The lamenter of Bel.” The Indian god Siva, who, as we have seen, is sometimes represented as a child at the breast of its mother, and has the same bloody character as Moloch, or the Roman Saturn, is called by this very name, as may be seen from the following verse made in reference to the image found in his celebrated temple at Somnaut:
”This image grim, whose name was LAUT,
Bold Mahmoud found when he took Sumnaut.”
BORROW’S Gypsies in Spain, or Zincali
As Lat was used as a synonym for Saturn, there can be little doubt that Latinus was used in the same sense.
The deified kings were called after the gods from whom they professed to spring, and not after their territories. The same, we may be sure, was the case with Latinus.
While Saturn, therefore, is the name of the beast, and contains the mystic number, Lateinos, which contains the same number, is just as peculiar and distinctive an appellation of the same beast. The Pope, then, as the head of the beast, is equally Lateinos or Saturn, that is, the head of the Babylonian ”Mystery.” When, therefore, the Pope requires all his services to be performed in the ”Latin tongue,” that is as much as to say that they must be performed in the language of ”Mystery”; when he calls his Church the Latin Church, that is equivalent to a declaration that it is the Church of ”Mystery.” Thus, by this very name of the Pope’s own choosing, he has with his own hands written upon the very forehead of his apostate communion its divine Apocalyptic designation, ”MYSTERY–Babylon the great.” Thus, also, by a process of the purest induction, we have been led on from step to step, till we find the mystic number 666 unmistakably and ”indelibly marked” on his own forehead, and that he who has his seat on the seven hills of Rome has exclusive and indefeasible claims to be regarded as the Visible head of the beast.
The reader, however, who has carefully considered the language that speaks of the name and number of the Apocalyptic beast, must have observed that, in the terms that describe that name and number, there is still an enigma that ought not to be overlooked. The words are these: ”Let him that hath understanding count the number of the beast–for it is the number of a man” (Rev 13:18). What means the saying, that the ”number of the beast is the number of a man”? Does it merely mean that he has been called by a name that has been borne by some individual man before? This is the sense in which the words have been generally understood. But surely this would be nothing very distinctive–nothing that might not equally apply to innumerable names. But view this language in connection with the ascertained facts of the case, and what a Divine light at once beams from the expression. Saturn, the hidden god,–the god of the Mysteries, whom the Pope represents, whose secrets were revealed only to the initiated,–was identical with Janus, who was publicly known to all Rome, to the uninitiated and initiated alike, as the grand Mediator, the opener and the shutter, who had the key of the invisible world. Now, what means the name Janus? That name, as Cornificius in Macrobius shows, was properly Eanus; and in ancient Chaldee, E-anush signifies ”the Man.” By that very name was the Babylonian beast from the sea called, when it first made its appearance. *
* The name, as given in Greek by Berosus, is O-annes; but this is just the very way we might expect ”He-anesth,” ”the man,” to appear in Greek. He-siri, in Greek, becomes Osiris; and He-sarsiphon, Osarsiphon; and, in like manner, He-anesh naturally becomes Oannes. In the sense of a ”Man-god,” the name Oannes is taken by Barker (Lares and Penates). We find the conversion of the H’ into O’ among our own immediate neighbours, the Irish; what is now O’Brien and O’Connell was originally H’Brien and H’Connell (Sketches of Irish History).
The name E-anush, or ”the Man,” was applied to the Babylonian Messiah, as identifying him with the promised seed of the Woman. The name of ”the Man,” as applied to a god, was intended to designate him as the ”god-man.” We have seen that in India the Hindoo Shasters bear witness, that in order to enable the gods to overcome their enemies, it was needful that the Sun, the supreme divinity, should be incarnate, and born of a Woman. The classical nations had a legend of precisely the same nature. ”There was a current tradition in heaven,” says Apollodorus, ”that the giants could never be conquered except by the help of a man.” That man, who was believed to have conquered the adversaries of the gods, was Janus, the god-man. In consequence of his assumed character and exploits, Janus was invested with high powers, made the keeper of the gates of heaven, and arbiter of men’s eternal destinies. Of this Janus, this Babylonian ”man,” the Pope, as we have seen, is the legitimate representative; his key, therefore, he bears, with that of Cybele, his mother-wife; and to all his blasphemous pretensions he at this hour lays claim. The very fact, then, that the Pope founds his claim to universal homage on the possession of the keys of heaven, and that in a sense which empowers him, in defiance of every principle of Christianity, to open and shut the gates of glory, according to his mere sovereign will and pleasure, is a striking and additional proof that he is that head of the beast from the sea, whose number, as identified with Janus, is the number of a man, and amounts exactly to 666.
But there is something further still in the name of Janus or Eanus, not to be passed over. Janus, while manifestly worshipped as the Messiah or god-man, was also celebrated as ”Principium Decorum,” the source and fountain of all the Pagan gods. We have already in this character traced him backward through Cush to Noah; but to make out his claim to this high character, in its proper completeness, he must be traced even further still. The Pagans knew, and could not but know, at the time the Mysteries were concocted, in the days of Shem and his brethren, who, through the Flood, had passed from the old world to the new, the whole story of Adam, and therefore it was necessary, if a deification of mankind there was to be, that his pre-eminent dignity, as the human ”Father of gods and men,” should not be ignored. Nor was it. The Mysteries were full of what he did, and what befel him; and the name E-anush, or, as it appeared in the Egyptian form, Ph’anesh, ”The man,” was only another name for that of our great progenitor. The name of Adam in the Hebrew of Genesis almost always occurs with the article before it, implying ”The Adam,” or ”The man.” There is this difference, however–”The Adam” refers to man unfallen, E-anush, ”The man,” to ”fallen man.” E-anush, then, as ”Principium decorum,” ”The fountain and father of the gods,” is ”FALLEN Adam.” *
* Anesh properly signifies only the weakness or frailty of fallen humanity; but any one who consults OVID, Fashti, as to the character of Janus, will see that when E-anush was deified, it was not simply as Fallen man with his weakness, but Fallen man with his corruption.
The principle of Pagan idolatry went directly to exalt fallen humanity, to consecrate its lusts, to give men license to live after the flesh, and yet, after such a life, to make them sure of eternal felicity. E-anus, the ”fallen man,” was set up as the human Head of this system of corruption–this ”Mystery of Iniquity.” Now, from this we come to see the real meaning of the name, applied to the divinity commonly worshipped in Phrygia along with Cybele in the very same character as this same Janus, who was at once the Father of the gods, and the Mediatorial divinity. That name was Atys, or Attis, or Attes, * and the meaning will evidently appear from the meaning of the well-known Greek word Ate, which signifies ”error of sin,” and is obviously derived from the Chaldean Hata, ”to sin.”
* SMITH’S Classical Dictionary, ”Atys.” The identification of Attes with Bacchus or Adonis, who was at once the Father of the gods, and the Mediator, is proved from divers considerations. 1. While it is certain that the favourite god of the Phrygian Cybele was Attes, whence he was called ”Cybelius Attes,” from Strabo, we learn that the divinity worshipped along with Cybele in Phrygia, was called by the very name of Dionusos or Bacchus. 2. Attes was represented in the very same way as Bacchus. In Bryant there is an inscription to him along with the Idaean goddess, that is Cybele, under the name of ”Attis the Minotaur” (Mythol.). Bacchus was bull-horned; it is well known that the Minotaur, in like manner, was half-man, half-bull. 3. He was represented in the exoteric story, as perishing in the same way as Adonis by a wild boar (PAUSAN). 4. In the rites of Magna Mater or Cybele, the priests invoked him as the ”Deus propitius, Deus sanctus,” ”the merciful God, the holy God” (ARNOBIUS in Maxima Biblioth. Patrum), the very character which Bacchus or Adonis sustained as the mediatorial god.
Atys or Attes, formed from the same verb, and in a similar way, signifies ”The Sinner.” The reader will remember that Rhea or Cybele was worshipped in Phrygia under the name of Idaia Mater, ”The mother of knowledge,” and that she bore in her hand, as her symbol, the pomegranate, which we have seen reason to conclude to have been in Pagan estimation the fruit of the ”forbidden tree.” Who, then, so likely to have been the contemplar divinity of that ”Mother of knowledge” as Attes, ”The sinner,” even her own husband, whom she induced to share with her in her sin, and partake of her fatal knowledge, and who thereby became in true and proper sense, ”The man of sin,”–”the man by whom sin entered the world, and death by sin, and so death passed upon all, because all have sinned.” *
* The whole story of Attes can be proved in detail to be the story of the Fall. Suffice it here only to state that, even on the surface, this sin was said to be connected with undue love for ”a nymph, whose fate depended on a tree” (OVID, Fasti). The love of Attes for this nymph was in one aspect an offence to Cybele, but, in another, it was the love of Cybele herself; for Cybele has two distinct fundamental characters–that of the Holy Spirit, and also that of our mother Eve. ”The nymph whose fate depended on a tree” was evidently Rhea, the mother of mankind.
Now to Attes, this ”Man of sin,” after passing through those sorrows and sufferings, which his worshippers yearly commemorated, the distinguishing characteristics and glories of the Messiah were given. He was identified with the sun, * the only god; he was identified with Adonis; and to him as thus identified, the language of the Sixteenth Psalm, predicting the triumph of our Saviour Christ over death and the grave, was in all its greatness applied: ”Thou wilt not leave my soul in hell, nor suffer thine Holy One to see corruption.”
BRYANT. The ground of the Identification of Attis with the sun evidently was, that as Hata signifies to sin, so Hatah, which signifies to burn, is in pronunciation nearly the same. (see note below)
It is sufficiently known that the first part of this statement was applied to Adonis; for the annual weeping of the women for Tammuz was speedily turned into rejoicings, on account of his fabled return from Hades, or the infernal regions. But it is not so well known that Paganism applied to its mediatorial god the predicted incorruption of the body of the Messiah. But that this was the fact, we learn from the distinct testimony of Pausanias. ”Agdistis,” that is Cybele, says he, ”obtained from Jupiter, that no part of the body of Attes should either become putrid or waste away.” Thus did Paganism apply to Attes ”the sinner,” the incommunicable honour of Christ, who came to ”save His people from their sins”–as contained in the Divine language uttered by the ”sweet psalmist of Israel,” a thousand years before the Christian era. If, therefore, the Pope occupies, as we have seen, the very place of Janus ”the man,” how clear is it, that he equally occupies the place of Attes, ”the sinner,” and then how striking in this point of view the name ”Man of sin,” as divinely given by prophecy (2 Thess 2:3) to him who was to be the head of the Christian apostacy, and who was to concentrate in that apostacy all the corruption of Babylonian Paganism?
The Pope is thus on every ground demonstrated to be the visible head of the beast. But the beast has not only a visible, but an invisible head that governs it. That invisible head is none other than Satan, the head of the first grand apostacy that began in heaven itself. This is put beyond doubt by the language of Revelation 13:4 ”And they worshipped the Dragon which gave power unto the beast, saying, Who is like unto the beast? Who is able to make war with him?” This language shows that the worship of the dragon is commensurate with the worship of the beast. That the dragon is primarily Satan, the arch-fiend himself, is plain from the statement of the previous chapter (Rev 12:9) ”And the Dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world.” If, then, the Pope be, as we have seen, the visible head of the beast, the adherents of Rome, in worshipping the Pope, of necessity worship also the Devil. With the Divine statement before us, there is no possibility of escaping from this. And this is exactly what we might expect on other grounds. Let it be remembered that the Pope, as the head of the Mystery of Iniquity, is ”the son of perdition,” Iscariot, the false apostle, the traitor. Now, it is expressly stated, that before Judas committed his treason, ”Satan,” the prince of the Devils, ”entered into him,” took complete and entire possession of him. From analogy, we may expect the same to have been the case here. Before the Pope could even conceive such a scheme of complicated treachery to the cause of his Lord, as has been proved against him, before he could be qualified for successfully carrying that treacherous scheme into effect, Satan himself must enter into him. The Mystery of Iniquity was to practise and prosper according ”to the working”–i.e., literally, ”according to the energy or mighty power of Satan” (2 Thess 2:9). *
* The very term ”energy” here employed, is the term continually used in the Chaldean books, describing the inspiration coming from the gods and demons to their worshippers. (TAYLOR’S Jamblichus)
Therefore Satan himself, and not any subordinate spirit of hell, must preside over the whole vast system of consecrated wickedness; he must personally take possession of him who is its visible head, that the system may be guided by his diabolical subtlety, and ”energised” by his super-human power. Keeping this in view, we see at once how it is that, when the followers of the Pope worship the beast, they worship also the ”dragon that gave power to the beast.”
Thus, altogether independent of historical evidence on this point, we are brought to the irresistible conclusion that the worship of Rome is one vast system of Devil-worship. If it be once admitted that the Pope is the head of the beast from the sea, we are bound, on the mere testimony of God, without any other evidence whatever, to receive this as a fact, that, consciously or unconsciously, those who worship the Pope are actually worshipping the Devil. But, in truth, we have historical evidence, and that of a very remarkable kind, that the Pope, as head of the Chaldean Mysteries, is as directly the representative of Satan, as he is of the false Messiah of Babylon. It was long ago noticed by Irenaeus, about the end of the second century, that the name Teitan contained the Mystic number 666; and he gave it as his opinion that Teitan was ”by far the most probable name” of the beast from the sea. *
* IRENAEUS. Though the name Teitan was originally derived from Chaldee, yet it became thoroughly naturalised in the Greek language. Therefore, to give the more abundant evidence on this important subject, the Spirit of God seems to have ordered it, that the number of Teitan should be found according to the Greek computation, while that of Satur is found by the Chaldee.
The grounds of his opinion, as stated by him, do not carry much weight; but the opinion itself he may have derived from others who had better and more valid reasons for their belief on this subject. Now, on inquiry, it will actually be found, that while Saturn was the name of the visible head, Teitan was the name of the invisible head of the beast. Teitan is just the Chaldean form of Sheitan, * the very name by which Satan has been called from time immemorial by the Devil-worshippers of Kurdistan; and from Armenia or Kurdistan, this Devil-worship embodied in the Chaldean Mysteries came westward to Asia Minor, and thence to Etruria and Rome.
* The learned reader has no need of examples in proof of this frequent Chaldean transformation of the Sh or S into T; but for the common reader, the following may be adduced: Hebrew, Shekel, to weigh, becomes Tekel in Chaldee; Hebrew, Shabar, to break–Chaldee, Tabar; Hebrew, Seraphim–Chaldee, Teraphim, the Babylonian counterfeit of the Divine Cherubim or Seraphim; Hebrew, Asar, to be rich–Chaldee, Atar; Hebrew, Shani, second–Chaldee, Tanin, &c.
That Teitan was actually known by the classic nations of antiquity to be Satan, or the spirit of wickedness, and originator of moral evil, we have the following proofs: The history of Teitan and his brethren, as given in Homer and Hesiod, the two earliest of all the Greek writers, although later legends are obviously mixed up with it, is evidently the exact counterpart of the Scriptural account of Satan and his angels. Homer says, that ”all the gods of Tartarus,” or Hell, ”were called Teitans.” Hesiod tells us how these Teitans, or ”gods of hell,” came to have their dwelling there. The chief of them having committed a certain act of wickedness against his father, the supreme god of heaven, with the sympathy of many others of the ”sons of heaven,” that father ”called them all by an opprobrious name, Teitans,” pronounced a curse upon them, and then, in consequence of that curse, they were ”cast down to hell,” and ”bound in chains of darkness” in the abyss. While this is the earliest account of Teitan and his followers among the Greeks, we find that, in the Chaldean system, Teitan was just a synonym for Typhon, the malignant Serpent or Dragon, who was universally regarded as the Devil, or author of all wickedness. It was Typhon, according to the Pagan version of the story, that killed Tammuz, and cut him in pieces; but Lactantius, who was thoroughly acquainted with the subject, upbraids his Pagan countrymen for ”worshipping a child torn in pieces by the Teitans.” It is undeniable, then, that Teitan, in Pagan belief, was identical with the Dragon, or Satan. *
* We have seen that Shem was the actual slayer of Tammuz. As the grand adversary of the Pagan Messiah, those who hated him for his deed called him for that very deed by the name of the Grand Adversary of all, Typhon, or the Devil. ”If they called the Master of the house Beelzebub,” no wonder that his servant was called by a similar name.
In the Mysteries, as formerly hinted, an important change took place as soon as the way was paved for it. First, Tammuz was worshipped as the bruiser of the serpent’s head, meaning thereby that he was the appointed destroyer of Satan’s kingdom. Then the dragon himself, or Satan, came to receive a certain measure of worship, to ”console him,” as the Pagans said, ”for the loss of his power,” and to prevent him from hurting them; and last of all the dragon, or Teitan or Satan, became the supreme object of worship, the Titania, or rites of Teitan, occupying a prominent place in the Egyptian Mysteries, and also in those of Greece. How vitally important was the place that these rites of Teitan or Satan occupied, may be judged of from the fact that Pluto, the god of Hell (who, in his ultimate character, was just the grand Adversary), was looked up to with awe and dread as the great god on whom the destinies of mankind in the eternal world did mainly depend; for it was said that to Pluto belonged ”to purify souls after death.” Purgatory having been in Paganism, as it is in Popery, the grand hinge of priestcraft and superstition, what a power did this opinion attribute to the ”god of Hell”! No wonder that the serpent, the Devil’s grand instrument in seducing mankind, was in all the earth worshipped with such extraordinary reverence, it being laid down in the Octateuch of Ostanes, that ”serpents were the supreme of all gods and the princes of the Universe.” No wonder that it came at last to be firmly believed that the Messiah, on whom the hopes of the world depended, was Himself the ”seed of the serpent”! This was manifestly the case in Greece; for the current story there came to be, that the first Bacchus was brought forth in consequence of a connexion on the part of his mother with the father of the gods, in the form of a ”speckled snake.” *
* OVID, Metam. So deeply was the idea of ”the seed of the serpent” being the great World-king imprinted on the Pagan mind, that when a man set up to be a god upon earth, it was held essential to establish his title to that character, that he prove himself to be the ”serpent’s seed.” Thus, when Alexander the Great claimed divine honours, it is well known that his mother Olympias, declared that he was not sprung from King Philip, her husband, but from Jupiter, in the form of a serpent. In like manner, says the authoress of Rome in the 19th Century, the Roman emperor, ”Augustus, pretended that he was the son of Apollo, and that the god had assumed the form of a serpent for the purpose of giving him birth.”
That ”father of the gods” was manifestly ”the god of hell”; for Proserpine, the mother of Bacchus, that miraculously conceived and brought forth the wondrous child–whose rape by Pluto occupied such a place in the Mysteries–was worshipped as the wife of the god of Hell, as we have already seen, under the name of the ”Holy Virgin.” The story of the seduction of Eve * by the serpent is plainly imported into this legend, as Julius Firmicus and the early Christian apologists did with great force cast in the teeth of the Pagans of their day; but very different is the colouring given to it in the Pagan legend from that which it has in the Divine Word.
* We find that Semele, the mother of the Grecian Bacchus, had been identified with Eve; for the name of Eve had been given to her, as Photius tells us that ”Pherecydes called Semele, Hue.” Hue is just the Hebrew name for Eve, without the points.
Thus the grand Thimblerigger, by dexterously shifting the peas, through means of men who began with great professions of abhorrence of his character, got himself almost everywhere recognised as in very deed ”the god of this world.” So deep and so strong was the hold that Satan had contrived to get of the ancient world in this character, that even when Christianity had been proclaimed to man, and the true light had shone from Heaven, the very doctrine we have been considering raised its head among the professed disciples of Christ. Those who held this doctrine were called Ophiani or Ophites, that is, serpent-worshippers. ”These heretics,” says Tertullian, ”magnify the serpent to such a degree as to prefer him even to Christ Himself; for he, say they, gave us the first knowledge of good and evil. It was from a perception of his power and majesty that Moses was induced to erect the brazen serpent, to which whosoever looked was healed. Christ Himself, they affirm, in the Gospel imitates the sacred power of the serpent, when He says that, ‘As Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness even so must the Son of Man be lifted up.’ They introduce it when they bless the Eucharist.” These wicked heretics avowedly worshipped the old serpent, or Satan, as the grand benefactor of mankind, for revealing to them the knowledge of good and evil. But this doctrine they had just brought along with them from the Pagan world, from which they had come, or from the Mysteries, as they came to be received and celebrated in Rome. Though Teitan, in the days of Hesiod and in early Greece, was an ”opprobrious name,” yet in Rome, in the days of the Empire and before, it had become the very reverse. ”The splendid or glorious Teitan” was the way in which Teitan was spoken of at Rome. This was the title commonly given to the Sun, both as the orb of day and viewed as a divinity. Now, the reader has seen already that another form of the sun-divinity, or Teitan, at Rome, was the Epidaurian snake, worshipped under the name of ”Aesculapius,” that is, ”the man-instructing serpent.” *
* Aish-shkul-ape, from Aish, ”man”; shkul, ”to instruct”; and Aphe, or Ape, ”a serpent.” The Greek form of this name, Asklepios, signifies simply ”the instructing snake,” and comes from A, ”the,” skl, ”to teach,” and hefi, ”a snake,” the Chaldean words being thus modified in Egypt. The name Aselepios, however, is capable of another sense, as derived from Aaz, ”strength,” and Khlep, ”to renew”; and, therefore, in the exoteric doctrine, Aselepios was known simply as ”the strength-restorer,” or the Healing God. But, as identified with the serpent, the true meaning of the name seems to be that which is first stated. Macrobius, giving an account of the mystic doctrine of the ancients, says that Aesculapius was that beneficent influence of the sun which pervaded the souls of men. Now the Serpent was the symbol of the enlightening sun.
Here, then, in Rome was Teitan, or Satan, identified with the ”serpent that taught mankind,” that opened their eyes (when, of course, they were blind), and gave them ”the knowledge of good and evil.” In Pergamos, and in all Asia Minor, from which directly Rome derived its knowledge of the Mysteries, the case was the same. In Pergamos, especially, where pre-eminently ”Satan’s seat was,” the sun-divinity, as is well known, was worshipped under the form of a serpent and under the name of Aesculapius, ”the man-instructing serpent.” According to the fundamental doctrine of the Mysteries, as brought from Pergamos to Rome, the sun was the one only god. Teitan, or Satan, then, was thus recognised as the one only god; and of that only god, Tammuz or Janus, in his character as the Son, or the woman’s seed, was just an incarnation. Here, then, the grand secret of the Roman Empire is at last brought to light–viz., the real name of the tutelar divinity of Rome. That secret was most jealously guarded; insomuch that when Valerius Soranus, a man of the highest rank, and, as Cicero declares, ”the most learned of the Romans,” had incautiously divulged it, he was remorselessly put to death for his revelation. Now, however, it stands plainly revealed. A symbolical representation of the worship of the Roman people, from Pompeii, strikingly confirms this deduction by evidence that appeals to the very senses. We have seen already that it is admitted by the author of Pompeii, that the serpents in the under compartment are only another way of exhibiting the dark divinities represented in the upper compartment. Let the same principle be admitted here, and it follows that the swallows, or birds pursuing the flies, represent the same thing as the serpents do below. But the serpent, of which there is a double representation, is unquestionably the serpent of Aesculapius. The fly-destroying swallow, therefore, must represent the same divinity. Now, every one knows what was the name by which ”the Lord of the fly,” or fly-destroying god of the Oriental world was called. It was Beel-zebub. This name, as signifying ”Lord of the Fly,” to the profane meant only the power that destroyed the swarms of flies when these became, as they often did in hot countries, a source of torment to the people whom they invaded. But this name, as identified with the serpent, clearly reveals itself as one of the distinctive names of Satan. And how appropriate is this name, when its mystic or esoteric meaning is penetrated. What is the real meaning of this familiar name? Baal-zebub just means ”The restless Lord,” * even that unhappy one who ”goeth to and fro in the earth, and walketh up and down in it,” who ”goeth through dry places seeking rest, and finding none.” From all this, the inference is unavoidable that Satan, in his own proper name, must have been the great god of their secret and mysterious worship, and this accounts for the extraordinary mystery observed on the subject. **
* See CLAVIS STOCKII, ”Zebub,” where it is stated that the word zebub, as applied to the fly, comes from an Arabic root, which signifies to move from place to place, as flies do, without settling anywhere. Baal-zebub, therefore, in its secret meaning, signifies, ”Lord of restless and unsettled motion.”
** I find Lactantius was led to the conclusion that the Aesculapian servant was the express symbol of Satan, for, giving an account of the bringing of the Epidaurian snake to Rome, he says: ”Thither [i.e., to Rome] the Demoniarches [or Prince of the Devils] in his own proper shape, without disguise, was brought; for those who were sent on that business brought back with them a dragon of amazing size.”
When, therefore, Gratian abolished the legal provision for the support of the fire-worship and serpent-worship of Rome, we see how exactly the Divine prediction was fulfilled (Rev 12:9) ”And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent called the DEVIL, and SATAN, which deceiveth the whole world; he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him.” *
* The facts stated above cast a very singular light on a well known superstition among ourselves. Everybody has heard of St. Swithin’s day, on which, if it rain, the current belief is, that it will rain in uninterrupted succession for six weeks. And who or what was St. Swithin that his day should be connected with forty days’ uninterrupted rain? for six weeks is just the round number of weeks equivalent to forty days. It is evident, in the first place, that he was no Christian saint, though an Archbishop of Canterbury in the tenth century is said to have been called by his name. The patron saint of the forty days’ rain was just Tammuz or Odin, who was worshipped among our ancestors as the incarnation of Noah, in whose time it rained forty days and forty nights without intermission. Tammuz and St. Swithin, then, must have been one and the same. But, as in Egypt, and Rome, and Greece, and almost everywhere else, long before the Christian era, Tammuz had come to be recognised as an incarnation of the Devil, we need not be surprised to find that St. Swithin is no other than St. Satan. One of the current forms of the grand adversary’s name among the Pagans was just Sytan or Sythan. This name, as applied to the Evil Being, is found as far to the east as the kingdom of Siam. It had evidently been known to the Druids, and that in connection with the flood; for they say that it was the son of Seithin that, under the influence of drink, let in the sea over the country so as to overwhelm a large and populous district. (DAVIES, Druids) The Anglo-Saxons, when they received that name, in the very same way as they made Odin into Wodin, would naturally change Sythan into Swythan; and thus, in St. Swithin’s day and the superstition therewith connected, we have at once a striking proof of the wide extent of Devil-worship in the heathen world, and of the thorough acquaintance of our Pagan ancestors with the great Scriptural fact of the forty days’ incessant rain at the Deluge.
If any one thinks it incredible that Satan should thus be canonised by the Papacy in the Dark Ages, let me call attention to the pregnant fact that, even in comparatively recent times, the Dragon–the Devil’s universally recognised symbol–was worshipped by the Romanists of Poictiers under the name of ”the good St. Vermine”!! (Notes of the Society of the Antiquaries of France, SALVERTE)
Now, as the Pagan Pontifex, to whose powers and prerogatives the Pope had served himself heir, was thus the High-priest of Satan, so, when the Pope entered into a league and alliance with that system of Devil-worship, and consented to occupy the very position of that Pontifex, and to bring all its abominations into the Church, as he has done, he necessarily became the Prime Minister of the Devil, and, of course, came as thoroughly under his power as ever the previous Pontiff had been. *
* This gives a new and darker significance to the mystic Tau, or sign of the cross. At first it was the emblem of Tammuz, at last it became the emblem of Teitan, or Satan himself.
How exact the fulfilment of the Divine statement that the coming of the Man of Sin was to be ”after the working or energy of Satan.” Here, then, is the grand conclusion to which we are compelled, both on historical and Scriptural grounds, to come: As the mystery of godliness is God manifest in the flesh, so the mystery of iniquity is–so far as such a thing is possible–the Devil incarnate.


Note
Attes, the Sinner
We have seen that the name Pan signifies ”to turn aside,” and have concluded that as it is a synonym for Hata, ”to sin,” the proper generic meaning of which is ”to turn aside from the straight line,” that name was the name of our first parent, Adam. One of the names of Eve, as the primeval goddess, worshipped in ancient Babylon, while it gives confirmation to this conclusion, elucidates also another classical myth in a somewhat unexpected way. The name of that primeval goddess, as given by Berosus, is Thalatth, which, as we have seen, signifies ”the rib.” Adam’s name, as her husband, would be ”Baal-Thalatth,” ”Husband of the rib”; for Baal signifies Lord in the sense frequently of ”Husband.” But ”Baal-Thalatth,” according to a peculiar Hebrew idiom already noticed, signifies also ”He that halted or went sideways.” *
* The Chaldee Thalatth, ”a rib” or a ”side,” comes from the verb Thalaa, the Chaldee form of Tzalaa, which signifies ”to turn aside,” ”to halt,” ”to sidle,” or ”to walk sideways.”
This is the remote origin of Vulcan’s lameness; for Vulcan, as the ”Father of the gods,” needed to be identified with Adam, as well as the other ”fathers of the gods,” to whom we have already traced him. Now Adam, in consequence of his sin and departure from the straight line of duty, was, all his life after, in a double sense ”Baal-Thalatth,” not only the ”Husband of the rib,” but ”The man that halted or walked sideways.” In memory of this turning aside, no doubt it was that the priests of Baal (1 Kings 18:26) ”limped at the altar,” when supplicating their god to hear them (for that is the exact meaning in the original of the word rendered ”leaped”–see KITTO’s Bib. Cyclop), and that the Druidic priests went sideways in performing some of their sacred rites, as appears from the following passage of Davies: ”The dance is performed with solemn festivity about the lakes, round which and the sanctuary the priests move sideways, whilst the sanctuary is earnestly invoking the gliding king, before whom the fair one retreats upon the veil that covers the huge stones” (Druids). This Davies regards as connected with the story of Jupiter, the father of the gods, violating his own daughter in the form of a serpent. Now, let the reader look at what is on the breast of the Ephesian Diana, as the Mother of the gods, and he will see a reference to her share in the same act of going aside; for there is the crab, and how does a crab go but sideways? This, then, shows the meaning of another of the signs of the Zodiac. Cancer commemorates the fatal turning aside of our first parent from the paths of righteousness, when the covenant of Eden was broken.
The Pagans knew that this turning aside or going sideways, implied death–the death of the soul–(”In the day thou eatest thereof, thou shalt surely die”); and, therefore, while at the spring festival of Cybele and Attes, there were great lamentations for the death of Attes, so on the Hilaria or rejoicing festival of the 25th of March–that is, Lady-day, the last day of the festival–the mourning was turned into joy, ”on occasion of the dead god being restored to life again” (DUPUIS, Origine de tous les Cultes). If Attes was he that by ”his turning aside” brought sin and death into the world, what could the life be to which he was so speedily restored, but just that new and divine life which enters every soul when it is ”born again,” and so ”passes from death unto life.” When the promise was given that the seed of the woman should bruise the serpent’s head, and Adam grasped it by faith, that, there can be no doubt, was evidence that the divine life was restored, and that he was born again. And thus do the very Mysteries of Attes, which were guarded with special jealousy, and the secret meaning of which Pausanias declares that he found it impossible, notwithstanding all his efforts to discover (Achaica), bear their distinct testimony, when once the meaning of the name of Attes is deciphered, to the knowledge which paganism itself had of the real nature of the Fall, and of the essential character of that death, which was threatened in the primeval covenant.
This new birth of Attes laid the foundation for his being represented as a little child, and so being identified with Adonis, who, though he died a full-grown man, was represented in that very way. In the Eleusinian Mysteries, that commemorated the rape of Proserpine, that is, the seduction of Eve, the lamented god, or Bacchus, was represented as a babe, at the breast of the great Mother, who by Sophocles is called Deo (Antigone). As Deo or Demete, applied to the Great Mother, is evidently just another form of Idaia Mater, ”The Mother of Knowledge” (the verb ”to know” being either Daa or Idaa), this little child, in one of his aspects, was no doubt the same as Attes, and thus also Deoius, as his name is given. The Hilaria, or rejoicing festival of the 25th of March, or Lady-day, owed its gladness to the Annunciation of a birth yet to come, even the birth of the woman’s seed; but, at the same time, the joy of that festival was enhanced by the immediate new birth that very day of Attes, ”The sinner,” or Adam, who, in consequence of his breach of the covenant, had become dead in ”trespasses and sins.”


The Two Babylons
Alexander Hislop
Conclusion
I have now finished the task I proposed to myself. Even yet the evidence is not nearly exhausted; but, upon the evidence which has been adduced, I appeal to the reader if I have not proved every point which I engaged to demonstrate. Is there one, who has candidly considered the proof that has been led, that now doubts that Rome is the Apocalyptic Babylon? Is there one who will venture to deny that, from the foundation to the topmost stone, it is essentially a system of Paganism? What, then, is to be the practical conclusion from all this?
1. Let every Christian henceforth and for ever treat it as an outcast from the pale of Christianity. Instead of speaking of it as a Christian Church, let it be recognised and regarded as the Mystery of Iniquity, yea, as the very Synagogue of Satan. With such overwhelming evidence of its real character, it would be folly–it would be worse–it would be treachery to the cause of Christ–to stand merely on the defensive, to parley with its priests about the lawfulness of Protestant orders, the validity of Protestant sacraments, or the possibility of salvation apart from its communion. If Rome is now to be admitted to form a portion of the Church of Christ, where is the system of Paganism that has ever existed, or that now exists, that could not put in an equal claim? On what grounds could the worshippers of the original Madonna and child in the days of old be excluded ”from the commonwealth of Israel,” or shown to be ”strangers to the covenants of promise”? On what grounds could the worshippers of Vishnu at this day be put beyond the bounds of such wide catholicity? The ancient Babylonians held, the modern Hindoos still hold, clear and distinct traditions of the Trinity, the Incarnation, the Atonement. Yet, who will venture to say that such nominal recognition of the cardinal articles of Divine revelation could relieve the character of either the one system or the other from the brand of the most deadly and God-dishonouring heathenism? And so also in regard to Rome. True, it nominally admits Christian terms and Christian names; but all that is apparently Christian in its system is more than neutralised by the malignant Paganism that it embodies. Grant that the bread the Papacy presents to its votaries can be proved to have been originally made of the finest of the wheat; but what then, if every particle of that bread is combined with prussic acid or strychnine? Can the excellence of the bread overcome the virus of the poison? Can there by anything but death, spiritual and eternal death, to those who continue to feed upon the poisoned food that it offers? Yes, here is the question, and let it be fairly faced. Can there be salvation in a communion in which it is declared to be a fundamental principle, that the Madonna is ”our greatest hope; yea, the SOLE GROUND OF OUR HOPE”? *
* The language of the late Pope Gregory, substantially endorsed by the present Pontiff.
The time is come when charity to the perishing souls of men, hoodwinked by a Pagan priesthood, abusing the name of Christ, requires that the truth in this matter should be clearly, loudly, unflinchingly proclaimed. The beast and the image of the beast alike stand revealed in the face of all Christendom; and now the tremendous threatening of the Divine Word in regard to their worship fully applies (Rev 14:9,10): ”And the third angel followed them, saying, ‘If any man worship the beast and his image, and receive his mark in his forehead, or in his hand, the same shall drink of the wine of the wrath of God, poured without mixture into the cup of His indignation; and he shall be tormented with fire and brimstone in the presence of the holy angels, and in the presence of the Lamb.’” These words are words of awful import; and woe to the man who is found finally under the guilt which they imply. These words, as has already been admitted by Elliott, contain a ”chronological prophecy,” a prophecy not referring to the Dark Ages, but to a period not far distant from the consummation, when the Gospel should be widely diffused, and when bright light should be cast on the character and doom of the apostate Church of Rome (vv 6-8). They come, in the Divine chronology of events, immediately after an angel has proclaimed, ”BABYLON IS FALLEN, IS FALLEN.” We have, as it were, with our own ears heard this predicted ”Fall of Babylon” announced from the high places of Rome itself, when the seven hills of the ”Eternal City” reverberated with the guns that proclaimed, not merely to the citizens of the Roman republic, but to the wide world, that ”PAPACY HAD FALLEN, de facto and de jure, from the temporal throne of the Roman State.” *
* The Apocalypse announces two falls of Babylon. The fall referred to above is evidently only the first. The prophecy clearly implies, that after the first fall it rises to a greater height than before; and therefore the necessity of the warning.
Now, it is in the order of the prophecy, after this fall of Babylon, that this fearful threatening comes. Can there, then, be a doubt that this threatening specially and peculiarly applies to this very time? Never till now was the real nature of the Papacy fully revealed; never till now was the Image of the beast set up. Till the Image of the beast was erected, till the blasphemous decree of the Immaculate Conception was promulged, no such apostacy had taken place, even in Rome, no such guilt had been contracted, as now lies at the door of the great Babylon. This, then, is a subject of infinite importance to every one within the pale of the Church of Rome–to every one also who is looking, as so many at present are doing, towards the City of the Seven Hills. If any one can prove that the Pope does not assume all the prerogatives and bear substantially all the blasphemous titles of that Babylonian beast that ”had the wound by a sword, and did live,” and if it can be shown that the Madonna, that has so recently with one consent been set up, is not in every essential respect the same as the Chaldean ”Image” of the beast, they may indeed afford to despise the threatening contained in these words. But if neither the one nor the other can be proved (and I challenge the strictest scrutiny in regard to both), then every one within the pale of the Papacy may well tremble at such a threatening. Now, then, as never before, may the voice Divine, and that a voice of the tenderest love, be heard sounding from the Eternal throne to every adherent of the Mystic Babylon, ”Come out of her, My people, that ye be not partakers of her sins, and that ye receive not of her plagues.”
2. But if the guilt and danger of those who adhere to the Roman Church, believing it to be the only Church where salvation can be found, be so great, what must be the guilt of those who, with a Protestant profession, nevertheless uphold the doomed Babylon? The constitution of this land requires our Queen to swear, before the crown can be put upon her head, before she can take her seat on the throne, that ”she believes” that the essential doctrines of Rome are ”idolatrous.” All the Churches of Britain, endowed and unendowed, alike with one voice declare the very same. They all proclaim that the system of Rome is a system of blasphemous idolatry…And yet the members of these Churches can endow and uphold, with Protestant money, the schools, the colleges, the chaplains of that idolatrous system. If the guilt of Romanists, then, be great, the guilt of Protestants who uphold such a system must be tenfold greater. That guilt has been greatly accumulating during the last three or four yeas. While the King of Italy, in the very States of the church–what but lately were the Pope’s own dominions–has been suppressing the monasteries (and in the space of two years no less than fifty-four were suppressed, and their property confiscated), the British Government has been acting on a policy the very reverse, has not only been conniving at the erection of monasteries, which are prohibited by the law of the land, but has actually been bestowing endowment on these illegal institutions under the name of Reformatories. It was only a short while ago, that it was stated, on authority of the Catholic Directory, that in the space of three years, fifty-two new converts were added to the monastic system of Great Britain, almost the very number that the Italians had confiscated, yet Christian men and Christian Churches look on with indifference. Now, if ever there was an excuse for thinking lightly of the guilt contracted by our national support of idolatry, that excuse will no longer avail. The God of Providence, in India, has been demonstrating that He is the God of Revelation. He has been proving, to an awe-struck world, by events that made every ear to tingle, that every word of wrath, written three thousand years ago against idolatry, is in as full force at this day as when He desolated the covenanted people of Israel for their idols, and sold them into the hands of their enemies. If men begin to see that it is a dangerous thing for professing Christians to uphold the Pagan idolatry of India, they must be blind indeed if they do not equally see that it must be as dangerous to uphold the Pagan idolatry of Rome. Wherein does the Paganism of Rome differ from that of Hindooism? Only in this, that the Roman Paganism is the more complete, more finished, more dangerous, more insidious Paganism of the two.
I am afraid, that after all that has been said, not a few will revolt from the above comparative estimate of Popery and undisguised Paganism. Let me, therefore, fortify my opinion by the testimonies of two distinguished writers, well qualified to pronounce on this subject. They will, at least, show that I am not singular in the estimate which I have formed. The writers to whom I refer, are Sir George Sinclair of Ulbster, and Dr. Bonar of Kelso. Few men have studied the system of Rome more thoroughly than Sir George, and in his Letters to the Protestants of Scotland he has brought all the fertility of his genius, the curiosa felicitas of his style, and the stores of his highly cultivated mind, to bear upon the elucidation of his theme. Now, the testimony of Sir George is this: ”Romanism is a refined system of Christianised heathenism, and chiefly differs from its prototype in being more treacherous, more cruel, more dangerous, more intolerant.” The mature opinion of Dr. Bonar is the very same, and that, too, expressed with the Cawnpore massacre particularly in view: ”We are doing for Popery at home,” says he, ”what we have done for idolaters abroad, and in the end the results will be the same; nay, worse; for Popish cruelty, and thirst for the blood of the innocent, have been the most savage and merciless that the earth has seen. Cawnpore, Delhi, and Bareilly, are but dust in comparison with the demoniacal brutalities perpetrated by the Inquisition, and by the armies of Popish fanaticism.” These are the words of truth and soberness, that no man acquainted with the history of modern Europe can dispute. There is great danger of their being overlooked at this moment. It will be a fatal error if they be. Let not the pregnant fact be overlooked, that, while the Apocalyptic history runs down to the consummation of all things, in that Divine foreshadowing all the other Paganisms of the world are in a manner cast into the shade by the Paganism of Papal Rome. It is against Babylon that sits on the seven hills that the saints are forewarned; it is for worshipping the beast and his image pre-eminently, that ”the vials of the wrath of God, that liveth and abideth for ever,” are destined to be outpoured upon the nations. Now, if the voice of God has been heard in the late Indian calamities, the Protestantism of Britain will rouse itself to sweep away at once and for ever all national support, alike from the idolatry of Hindoostan and the still more malignant idolatry of Rome. Then, indeed, there would be a lengthening of our tranquility, then there would be hope that Britain would be exalted, and that its power would rest on a firm and stable foundation. But if we will not ”hear the voice, if we receive not correction, if we refuse to return,” if we persist in maintaining, at the national charge, ”that image of jealousy provoking to jealousy,” then, after the repeated and ever INCREASING strokes that the justice of God has laid on us, we have every reason to fear that the calamities that have fallen so heavily upon our countrymen in India, may fall still more heavily upon ourselves, within our own borders at home; for it was when ”the image of jealousy” was set up in Jerusalem by the elders of Judah, that the Lord said, ”Therefore will I also deal in fury; mine eye shall not spare, neither will I have pity; and though they cry in mine ears with a loud voice, yet will I not hear them.” He who let loose the Sepoys, to whose idolatrous feelings and antisocial propensities we have pandered so much, to punish us for the guilty homage we had paid to their idolatry, can just as easily let loose the Papal Powers of Europe, to take vengeance upon us for our criminal fawning upon the Papacy.
3. But, further, if the views established in this work be correct, it is time that the Church of God were aroused. Are the witnesses still to be slain, and has the Image of the Beast only within the last year or two been set up, at whose instigation the bloody work is to be done? Is this, then, the time for indifference, for sloth, for lukewarmness in religion? Yet, alas! how few are they who are lifting up their voice like a trumpet, who are sounding the alarm in God’s holy mountain–who are bestirring themselves according to the greatness of the emergency–to gather the embattled hosts of the Lord to the coming conflict? The emissaries of Rome for years have been labouring unceasingly night and day, in season and out of season, in every conceivable way, to advance their Master’s cause, and largely have they succeeded. But ”the children of light” have allowed themselves to be lulled into a fatal security; they have folded their hands; they have got to sleep as soundly as if Rome had actually disappeared from the face of the earth–as if Satan himself had been bound and cast into the bottomless pit, and the pit had shut its mouth upon him, to keep him fast for a thousand years. How long shall this state of things continue? Oh, Church of God, awake, awake! Open your eyes, and see if there be not dark and lowering clouds on the horizon that indicate an approaching tempest. Search the Scriptures for yourselves; compare them with the facts of history, and say, if there be not reason after all to suspect that there are sterner prospects before the saints than most seem to wot of. If it may turn out that the views opened up in these pages are Scriptural and well-founded, they are at least worthy of being made the subjects of earnest and prayerful inquiry. It never can tend to good to indulge an uninquiring and delusive feeling of safety, when, if they be true, the only safety is to be found in a timely knowledge of the danger and due preparation, by all activity, all zeal, all spirituality of mind, to meet it. On the supposition that peculiar dangers are at hand, and that God in His prophetic Word has revealed them, His goodness is manifest. He has made known the danger, that, being forewarned, we may be forearmed; that, knowing our own weakness, we may cast ourselves on His Almighty grace; that we may feel the necessity of a fresh baptism of the Holy Ghost; that the joy of the Lord being our strength, we may be thorough and decided for the Lord, and for the Lord alone, that we may work, every one in his own sphere, with increased energy and diligence, in the Lord’s vineyard, and save all the souls we can, while yet opportunity lasts, and the dark predicted night has not come, wherein no man can work. Though there be dark prospects before us, there is no room for despondency; no ground for any one to say that, with such prospects, effort is vain. The Lord can bless and prosper to His own glory, the efforts of those who truly gird themselves to fight His battles in the most hopeless circumstances; and, at the very time when the enemy cometh in like a flood, He can, by His Spirit, lift up a standard against him. Nay, not only is this a possible thing, there is reason, from the prophetic word, to believe that so it shall actually be; that the last triumph of the Man of Sin shall not be achieved without a glorious struggle first, on the part of those who are leal-hearted to Zion’s King. But if we would really wish to do anything effectual in this warfare, it is indispensable that we know, and continually keep before our eyes, the stupendous character of that Mystery of Iniquity embodied in the Papacy that we have to grapple with. Popery boasts of being the ”old religion”; and truly, from what we have seen, it appears that it is ancient indeed. It can trace its lineage far beyond the era of Christianity, back over 4000 years, to near the period of the Flood and the building of the Tower of Babel. During all that period its essential elements have been nearly the same, and these elements have a peculiar adaptation to the corruption of human nature. Most seem to think that Popery is a system merely to be scouted and laughed at; but the Spirit of God everywhere characterises it in quite a different way. Every statement in the Scripture shows that it was truly described when it was characterised as ”Satan’s Masterpiece”–the perfection of his policy for deluding and ensnaring the world. It is not the state-craft of politicians, the wisdom of philosophers, or the resources of human science, that can cope with the wiles and subtleties of the Papacy. Satan, who inspires it, has triumphed over all these again and again. Why, the very nations where the worship of the Queen of Heaven, with all its attendant abominations, has flourished most in all ages, have been precisely the most civilised, the most polished, the most distinguished for arts and sciences. Babylon, where it took its rise, was the cradle of astronomy. Egypt, that nursed it in its bosom, was the mother of all the arts; the Greek cities of Asia Minor, where it found a refuge when expelled from Chaldea, were famed for their poets and philosophers, among the former Homer himself being numbered; and the nations of the European Continent, where literature has long been cultivated, are now prostrate before it. Physical force, no doubt, is at present employed in its behalf; but the question arises, How comes it that this system, of all others, can so prevail as to get that physical force to obey its behests? No answer can be given but this, that Satan, the god of this world, exerts his highest power in its behalf. Physical force has not always been on the side of the Chaldean worship of the Queen of Heaven. Again and again has power been arrayed against it; but hitherto every obstacle it has surmounted, every difficulty it has overcome. Cyrus, Xerxes, and many of the Medo-Persian kings, banished its priests from Babylon, and laboured to root it out of their empire; but then it found a secure retreat in Pergamos, and ”Satan’s seat” was erected there. The glory of Pergamos and the cities of Asia Minor departed; but the worship of the Queen of Heaven did not wane. It took a higher flight, and seated itself on the throne of Imperial Rome. That throne was subverted. The Arian Goths came burning with fury against the worshippers of the Virgin Queen; but still that worship rose buoyant above all attempts to put it down, and the Arian Goths themselves were soon prostrate at the feet of the Babylonian goddess, seated in glory on the seven hills of Rome. In more modern times, the temporal powers of all the kingdoms of Europe have expelled the Jesuits, the chief promoters of this idolatrous worship, from their dominions. France, Spain, Portugal, Naples, Rome itself have all adopted the same measures, and yet what do we see at this hour? The same Jesuitism and the worship of the Virgin exalted above almost every throne on the Continent. When we look over the history of the last 4000 yeas, what a meaning in the words of inspiration, that ”the coming of the Man of Sin” is with the energy, ”the mighty power of Satan.” Now, is this the system that, year by year, has been rising into power in our own empire? And is it for a moment to be imagined that lukewarm, temporising, half-hearted Protestants can make any head against such a system? No; the time is come when Gideon’s proclamation must be made throughout the camp of the Lord: ”Whosoever is fearful and afraid, let him return and depart early from Mount Gilead.” Of the old martyrs it is said, ”They overcame by the blood of the Lamb and the word of their testimony, and they loved not their lives unto the death.” The same self-denying, the same determined spirit, is needed now as much as ever it was. Are there none who are prepared to stand up, and in that very spirit to gird themselves for the great conflict that must come, before Satan shall be bound and cast into his prison-house? Can any one believe that such an event can take place without a tremendous struggle–that ”the god of this world” shall quietly consent to resign the power that for thousands of years he has wielded, without stirring up all his wrath, and putting forth all his energy and skill to prevent such a catastrophe. Who, then, is on the Lord’s side? If there be those who, within the last few years, have been revived and quickened–stirred up, not by mere human excitement, but by the Almighty grace of God’s Spirit, what is the gracious design of this? Is it merely that they themselves may be delivered from the wrath to come? No; it is that, zealous for the glory of their Lord, they may act the parts of true witnesses, contend earnestly for the faith once delivered to the saints, and maintain the honour of Christ in opposition to him who blasphemously usurps his prerogatives. If the servants of Antichrist are faithful to their master, and unwearied in promoting his cause, shall it be said that the servants of Christ are less faithful to theirs? If none else will bestir themselves, surely to the generous hearts of the young and rising ministry of Christ, in the kindness of their youth, and the love of their espousals, the appeal shall not be made in vain, when the appeal is made in the name of Him whom their souls love, that in this grand crisis of the Church and of the world, they should ”come to the help of the Lord–the help of the Lord against the mighty,” that they should do what in them lies to strengthen the hands and encourage the hearts of those who are seeking to stem the tide of apostacy, and to resist the efforts of the men who are labouring with such zeal, and with so much of infatuated patronage on the part of ”the powers that be,” to bring this land back again under the power of the Man of Sin. To take such a part, and steadily and perseveringly to pursue it, amid so much growing lukewarmness, it is indispensable that the servants of Christ set their faces as a flint. But if they have grace so to do, they shall not do so without a rich reward at last; and in time they have the firm and faithful promise that ”as their day is, so shall their strength be.” For all who wish truly to perform their part as good soldiers of Jesus Christ, there is the strongest and richest encouragement. With the blood of Christ on the conscience, with the Spirit of Christ warm and working in the heart, with our Father’s name on our forehead, and our life, as well as our lips, consistently bearing ”testimony” for God, we shall be prepared for every event. But it is not common grace that will do for uncommon times. If there be indeed such prospects before us, as I have endeavoured to prove there are, then we must live, and feel, and act as if we heard every day resounding in our ears the words of the great Captain of our Salvation, ”To him that overcometh will I grant to sit with Me on My throne, even as I also overcame, and am set down with My Father on His throne. Be thou faithful unto death, and I will give thee a crown of life.”
Lastly, I appeal to every reader of this work, if it does not contain an argument for the divinity of the Scriptures, as well as an exposure of the impostures of Rome. Surely, if one thing more than another be proved in the previous pages, it is this, that the Bible is no cunningly devised fable, but that holy men of God of old spake and wrote as they were moved by the Holy Ghost. What can account for the marvellous unity in all the idolatrous systems of the world, but that the facts recorded in the early chapters of Genesis were real transactions, in which, as all mankind were involved, so all mankind have preserved in their various systems, distinct and undeniable memorials of them, though those who have preserved them have long lost the true key to their meaning? What, too, but Omniscience could have foreseen that a system, such as that of the Papacy, could ever effect an entrance into the Christian Church, and practise and prosper as it has done? How could it ever have entered into the heart of John, the solitary exile of Patmos, to imagine, that any of the professed disciples of that Saviour whom he loved, and who said, ”My kingdom is not of this world,” should gather up and systematise all the idolatry and superstition and immorality of the Babylon of Belshazzar, introduce it into the bosom of the Church, and, by help of it, seat themselves on the throne of the Caesars, and there, as the high-priests of the queen of Heaven, and gods upon earth, for 1200 years, rule the nations with a rod of iron? Human foresight could never have done this; but all this the exile of Patmos has done. His pen, then, must have been guided by Him who sees the end from the beginning, and who calleth the things that be not as though they were. And if the wisdom of God now shines forth so brightly from the Divine expression ”Babylon the Great,” into which such an immensity of meaning has been condensed, ought not that to lead us the more to reverence and adore the same wisdom that is in reality stamped on every page of the inspired Word? Ought it not to lead us to say with the Psalmist, ”Therefore, I esteem all Thy commandments concerning all things to be right”? The commandments of God, to our corrupt and perverse minds, may sometimes seem to be hard. They may require us to do what is painful, they may require us to forego what is pleasing to flesh and blood. But, whether we know the reason of these commandments or no, if we only know that they come from ”the only wise God, our Saviour,” we may be sure that in the keeping of them there is great reward; we may go blindfold wherever the Word of God may lead us, and rest in the firm conviction that, in so doing, we are pursuing the very path of safety and peace. Human wisdom at the best is but a blind guide; human policy is a meter that dazzles and leads astray; and they who follow it walk in darkness, and know not whither they are going; but he ”that walketh uprightly,” that walks by the rule of God’s infallible Word, will ever find that ”he walketh surely,” and that whatever duty he has to perform, whatever danger he has to face, ”great peace have all they that love God’s law, and nothing shall offend them.”


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Luther on ecumenism and papacy

History of the Papacy by J.A. Wylie: "...the Church (so-called) of Rome has no right to rank amongst Christian Churches. She is not a Church, neither is her religion the Christian religion. We are accustomed to speak of Popery as a corrupt form of Christianity. We concede too much. The Church of Rome bears the same relation to the Church of Christ which the hierarchy of Baal bore to the institute of Moses; and Popery stands related to Christianity only in the same way in which Paganism stood related to primeval Revelation. Popery is not a corruption simply, but a transformation. It may be difficult to fix the time when it passed from the one into the other; but the change is incontestible. Popery is the gospel transubstantiated into the flesh and blood of Paganism, under a few of the accidents of Christianity."

Martin Luther

Just as in the days of the Apostles, so at this day we are forced to hear from certain denominations that we (by our obstinacy to adhere to the truth) do offend against love and unity in the churches, because we reject their doctrine. It would be better (they say) that we should let it pass, especially since the doctrine in dispute is what they call non-essential, and, therefore (they say) to stir up so great a discord and contention in the church over one or two doctrines (and those not the most important ones) is unfruitful and unnecessary.

To this I reply: Cursed be that love and unity which cannot be preserved except at the peril of the word of God.

Just as in the days of the Apostles, so at this day we are forced to hear from certain denominations that we (by our obstinacy to adhere to the truth) do offend against love and unity in the churches, because we reject their doctrine. It would be better (they say) that we should let it pass, especially since the doctrine in dispute is what they call non-essential, and, therefore (they say) to stir up so great a discord and contention in the church over one or two doctrines (and those not the most important ones) is unfruitful and unnecessary.

To this I reply: Cursed be that love and unity which cannot be preserved except at the peril of the word of God.

The negotiation about doctrinal agreement displeases me altogether, for this is utterly impossible unless the pope has his papacy abolished. Therefore avoid and flee those who seek the middle of the road. Think of me after I am dead and such middle-of-the-road men arise, for nothing good will come of it. There can be no compromise. (What Luther Says, II: 1019)

Ah, my dear brother in Christ, bear with me if here or elsewhere I use such coarse language when speaking of the wretched, confronted, atrocious monster at Rome! He who knows my thoughts must say that I am much, much, much too lenient and have neither words nor thought adequately to describe the shameful, abominable blasphemy to which he subjects the Word and name of Christ, our dear Lord and Savior. There are some Christians, wicked Christians indeed, who now would gloss things over to make the pope appear against in a good light and who, after he does so and has been dragged out of the mud, would like to reinstate him on the altar. But they are wicked people, whoever they may be, who defend the pope and want me to be quiet about the means whereby he has done harm. Truly, I cannot do this. All true, pious Christians, who love Christ and His Word, should, as said, be sincerely hostile to the pope. They should persecute him and injure him…. All should do this in their several calling, to the best of their ability, with all faithfulness and diligence. (What Luther Says, II: 1072)

What kind of a church is the pope’s church? It is an uncertain, vacillating and tottering church. Indeed, it is a deceitful, lying church, doubting and unbelieving, without God’s Word. For the pope with his wrong keys teaches his church to doubt and to be uncertain. If it is a vacillating church, then it is not the church of faith, for the latter is founded upon a rock, and the gates of hell cannot prevail against it (Matt.16:18). If it is not the church of faith, then it is not the Christian church, but it must be an unchristian, anti-Christian, and faithless church which destroys and ruins the real, holy, Christian church. (Luther’s Works, vol. 40, Church and Ministry II, The Keys, p.348)

All this is to be noted carefully, so that we can treat with contempt the filthy, foolish twaddle that the popes present in their decrees about their Roman church, that is, about their devil’s synagogue (Rev.2:9), which separates itself from common Christendom and the spiritual edifice built up on this stone, and instead invents for itself a fleshly worldly, worthless, lying, blasphemous, idolatrous authority over all of Christendom. One of these two things must be true: if the Roman church is not built on this rock along with the other churches, then it is the devil’s church; but if it is built, along with all the other churches, on this rock, then it cannot be lord or head over the other churches. For Christ the cornerstone knows nothing of two unequal churches, but only of one church alone, just as the Children’s Faith, that is, the faith of all of Christendom, says, ”I believe in one holy, Christian church,” and does not say, ”I believe in one holy Roman church.” The Roman church is and should be one portion or member of the holy Christian church, not the head, which befits solely Christ the cornerstone. If not, it is not a Christian but an UN-Christian and anti-Christian church, that is, a papal school of scoundrels. (Luther’s Works, Volume 41, Church and Ministry III, Against The Roman Papacy, An Institution Of The Devil, p.311)



I believe the pope is the masked and incarnate devil because he is the Antichrist. As Christ is God incarnate, so the Antichrist is the devil incarnate. The words are really spoken of the pope when its said that hes a mixed god, an earthly god, that is , a god of the earth. Here god is understood as god of this world. Why does he call himself an earthly god, as if the one, almighty God werent also on the earth? The kingdom of the pope really signifies the terrible wrath of God, namely, the abomination of desolation standing in the holy place. (Luthers Works, vol.54, Table Talks, No.4487, p.346)


C. H. Spurgeon on Popery


"It is the bounden duty of every Christian to pray against Antichrist, and as to what Antichrist is no sane man ought to raise a question. If it be not the Popery in the Church of Rome there is nothing in the world that can be called by that name. It wounds Christ, robs Christ of His glory, puts sacramental efficacy in the place of His atonement, and lifts a piece of bread in the place of the Saviour....If we pray against it, because it is against Him, we shall love the persons though we hate their errors; we shall love their souls, though we loathe and detest their dogmas...."

-- C. H. Spurgeon


A Wideness in Gods Mercy? (Billy Graham)

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Feeding sheeps or amusing goats Christian Entertainment An Evangelic Heresy

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Charles Spurgeon Apostasy mixed religion!

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Frälsningens väg!

Heb 11:25 Han ville hellre utstå lidande med Guds folk än för en kort tid leva i syndig njutning;
Heb 12:2 Och må vi därvid se på Jesus, trons hövding och fullkomnare, på honom, som i stället för att taga den glädje som låg framför honom, utstod korsets lidande och aktade smäleken för intet, och som nu sitter på högra sidan om Guds tron.
Heb 12:3 Ja, på honom, som har utstått så mycken gensägelse av syndare, på honom mån I tänka, så att I icke tröttnen och uppgivens i edra själar.
Heb 12:15 Och sen till, att ingen går miste om Guds nåd, och att ingen giftig rot skjuter skott och bliver till fördärv, så att menigheten därigenom bliver besmittad;
Heb 12:16 sen till, att ingen är en otuktig människa eller ohelig såsom Esau, han som för en enda maträtt sålde sin förstfödslorätt.
Heb 12:17 I veten ju att han ock sedermera blev avvisad, när han på grund av arvsrätt ville få välsignelsen; han kunde nämligen icke vinna någon ändring, fastän han med tårar sökte därefter.
Heb 10:36 I behöven nämligen ståndaktighet för att kunna göra Guds vilja och få vad utlovat är.
Heb 10:37 Ty "ännu en helt liten tid, så kommer den som skall komma, och han skall icke dröja;
Heb 10:38 och min rättfärdige skall leva av tro. Men om någon drager sig undan, så finner min själ icke behag i honom".
Heb 10:39 Dock, vi höra icke till dem som draga sig undan, sig själva till fördärv; vi höra till dem som tro och så vinna sina själar.

Ord 25:26 Såsom en grumlad källa och en fördärvad brunn, så är en rättfärdig som vacklar inför den ogudaktige.

Upp 3:16 Men nu, då du är ljum och varken varm eller kall, skall jag utspy dig ur min mun.

Se Ljum, sammanblandad, mixad, förväxlad, utbytt, utväxlad, ersatt, avlöst, efterträdd, liknöjd, likgiltig!

2Ti 4:7 Jag har kämpat den goda kampen, jag har fullbordat mitt lopp, jag har bevarat tron.
2Ti 4:8 Nu ligger rättfärdighetens segerkrans tillreds åt mig, och Herren, den rättfärdige domaren, skall giva den åt mig på "den dagen", och icke åt mig allenast, utan åt alla som hava älskat hans tillkommelse.

The Dangers Of Pragmatism vad din pastor borde veta innan han uttalar sig

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Deception In The Last Days

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Faith and confession Hindu style

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Book of Rememberance

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Judgment Seat of Christ

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The Adulation of Man in the Purpose Driven Life.

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The Mindset of Catholicism Permeating Evangelicalism

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The Trojan Church

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Twisting the Word

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De ska ha ett och samma sinne Det stora Babylon moder till alla skökorna och till styggelserna

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Jesus HATES the deeds of the Nicolaitiane, which I also hate.

Rev. 2:6 But this thou hast, that thou hatest the deeds of the Nicolaitianes, which I also hate. Nicolaitianes -To conquer the people or laity, these "deeds" had become in Pergamos a "doctrine" (Rev. 2:15)

Nicolaitians, to conquer the laity !

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