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by Dr. John Thomas
I was then reading the Esprit des Lois, a work that charmed me by its gravity, etc. I wished also to become acquainted with the code of the laws of France; but Dommanget, to whom I mentioned my desire, laughed, and pointed to the Justinian code as the common law code of the kingdom".
The institutes were published in 533, and in that year, in the case of an appeal by the Emperor Justinian to the ecclesiastical decision of the Bishop of Rome, he addressed him as the head of all the holy churches of the empire.
But the Justinian code was not adopted by Europe simultaneously, nor in 534, when his labours were complete.
He had made the Roman bishop spiritual head of the empire, but his supremacy was not acknowledged by the toe-kingdoms until about seventy-five years after.
Students flocked from all of them to the schools of Rome, Constantinople and Berytus, where they studied the law of the empire; and from these centres also priests and missionaries were sent to propagate the faith, and to convert the governments of the west to the religion of the Roman bishop.
When this was accomplished, Roman law and Roman superstition struck deep root among the institutions of the west.
The Roman high priest was regarded as their spiritual father; and the emperor, as the imperial head of the divided, but still Roman, dominion of the east and west.
This work required years to complete; but when finished, as it was about 606 or 608, we find the contest between the Bishop of Rome and the Patriarch of Constantinople, for the spiritual supremacy of the world, brought to a conclusion by the former being proclaimed universal bishop by the Emperor Phocas.
From 529 to 604 is a period of 75 years; and from 533 to 608 is also 75 years; and between 604 and 608, the Bishop of Rome obtained his legal recognition, which was celebrated by the erection of a statue to Phocas, with the date of 608 inscribed upon it.
This period of 75 years with a double beginning and a double ending of four years, is the period of the civil and ecclesiastical constitution of the ten-horned beast, when the Roman Dragon "gave him his power, and his throne, and great authority".
Now this symbol is to "continue forty and two months," which is the representative time of the continuance of the things represented by the symbol expressed in miniature.
It is the symbolical duration of the decemregal and imperial constitution of Roman Europe.
Daniel expresses the same duration by the phrase, "time, times, and dividing of time"; which also represents 1,260 years.
The beasts and their image, and the little horn and his eyes and mouth, are to prevail against the saints until the end of that period.
The little horn, and the two-horned beast and the image, do not exist all that time; for they did not appear till 270 years "after" the Justinian epoch: but although they did not all rise from the earth and sea, and attain to dominion at one and the same time, yet it is plainly revealed, that they are all to lose their independence, and finally their sovereignties, at the end of the 1,260 or forty-two months of years; so that while the ten horns will have practised 1,260 years from the time of Phocas, the little horn and his apocalyptic synonyms will have existed only somewhat more than 1,000.
The Bishop of Rome, however, as lion mouth of the ten horns, will have passed through his 1,260 years.
Not to interrupt the train of thought before us, I shall finish what I have to say about the time of the beast before I return to the subject of the witnesses.
The prophet saith, "Blessed is he that waiteth, and cometh to the 1,335 days".
The end of this period is a time of blessedness to the saints of the Holy City, because like Daniel they shall "stand in their lot in the end of the days".
But so long as the fourth beast "prospers" this cannot be; for the Gentiles tread down the Holy City until the 42 months expire.
There will, however, be no delay of the resurrection on account of the "practising" of the beast, because it will have to be destroyed out of the way by the Holy City.
The prophet informs us, that all things shown to him are to be finished after a "time, times, and a half," or 1,260 years; and among these wonders is the resurrection of many of the dead to everlasting life.
"Justinian's legislation (a.