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Elpis Israel
by Dr. John Thomas

But the trade of these soul-merchants is fast falling into disrepute.

Their customers growl exceedingly at being compelled to deal at Bazaars, where the profit is all on one side.

This state of things, however, will not last much longer; for the time cometh, it is written, when "no man buyeth their merchandise any more".

There is often more truth than fiction, though not much elegance, in the proverbs of the vulgar; but the reader will now perceive the scripture origin of the term "gospel shop," as applied to places of religious convocation, where men preach gospels at so much per sermon, or per annum.

I am aware that Paul says, "the Lord hath ordained that they which preach the gospel should live of the gospel".

This is just and proper.

But this ordinance does not apply to those who do not preach the gospel, but preach mere human tradition instead.

These are preachers of other gospels; and to pay them is "to take the bread out of the children's mouths, and cast it to dogs," even to "dumb dogs that cannot bark".

The places where they deal out their traditions are well and truly designated shops, or bazaars; for the system which sanctifies them is mere trading in religion, and haggling for a crust of bread.

But then, bazaars of priestly wares are distinguished from places of honourable trade by being dedicated to Mahuzzim.

This is a remarkable feature in the prophecy, which finds its counterpart in the dedication of the churches to guardian saints and angels.

Sophia at Constantinople, St.

Peter's at Rome, Our Lady's at Paris, St.

Paul's at London, and innumerable other bazaars, dedicated to all conceivable kinds of saints; and, lest any should be forgotten, to "All Saints," and even to "All Souls," -- are examples in point.

In these bazaars of guardians, then, the two Little Horns, and the other Horns, "through their policy have caused craft to prosper by their power; and have done honour to the god of guardians with gold, and silver, and precious stones and things desired".

CHAPTER V

It is impossible that the Holy Land can be for ever subject to the Gentiles -- It is to be wrested from them in the course of "the time of the end" -- Of Daniel's 2,400 days -- Of the beginning of "the time of the end" -- Of the king of the south at that time -- The Autocrat of Russia the king of the north at "the time of the end" -- England and the Jews -- Of Gogue and Magogue -- Ezekiel's and John's two different and remote confederacies -- Daniel's king of the north of "the time of the end," and Gogue of "the latter days," the same -- The Gogue of Ezekiel proved to be Emperor of Germany and Autocrat of all the Russias -- Gomer and the French -- Sheba, Dedan, the Merchants of Tarshish and its young lions, identified as the British power.

Our paraphrase was discontinued (403), at the end of the thirty-fifth verse of the eleventh chapter of Daniel.

It left Antiochus Epiphanes, the king of the north, at war with the Jews under Judas Maccabaeus, who were fighting against fearful odds for their very existence as a nation.

The prophecy about the Little Horn king led our attention off from events in the land of Israel to others in Italy and Constantinople where we beheld the Little Greek Horn, and after him, the Little Latin Horn, doing honour to the Roman Bishop, and converting him into a god in their respective dominions.

But, though the testimony directed our attention to Rome, in order that we might be able by the transactions of which that city was the centre, to identify the power represented by "the king who did according to his will," before it dismisses the Little Horn by pressing it down into the Assyrian Horn of the Goat, our thoughts are again turned upon Israel and their interesting country, by the prophet telling us that the Little Greek Horn "shall divide the land for gain".

This treatment of the Holy Land is particularly characteristic of the Ottoman power which possessed the country from 1509, when it was incorporated with the Turkish empire by Selim IX.

It has been divided by his successors to their Pashas literally "for gain": by which the ruin of the country was made sure and expeditious.