Hosea 11:2
As they called them, so they went from them: they sacrificed to Baalim, and burned incense to graven images.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
(2) As they (i.e., the prophets) called them, so they (Israel) went from them.—Sought to avoid the voice and presence of the men of God.

Hosea 11:2. As they called them, so, &c. — Or, The more they called them, or, they were called, so much the more they went from him; that is, the more earnestly the prophets called upon them to cleave steadfastly to the true God, (see Hosea 11:7,) the more they were bent to depart from him to the worship of idols. They sacrificed to Baalim — See note on Hosea 2:13. And burned incense to graven images — “We read frequently, in our English Bibles, of graven images, and of molten images. And the words are become so familiar, as names of idolatrous images, that, although they are not well chosen to express the Hebrew names, it seems not advisable to change them for others, that might more exactly correspond with the original. The graven image was not a thing wrought in metal by the tool of the workman we should now call an engraver; nor was the molten image an image made of metal, or any other substance melted, and shaped in a mould. In fact, the graven image and the molten image are the same thing under different names. The images of the ancient idolaters were first cut out of wood by the carpenter, as is very evident from the Prophet Isaiah. The figure of wood was overlaid with plates, either of gold or silver, or sometimes, perhaps, of an inferior metal. And in this finished state it was called a graven image, (that is, a carved image,) in reference to the inner solid figure of wood, and a molten (that is, an overlaid, or covered) image in reference to the outer metalline case, or covering. And sometimes both epithets are applied to it at once:” see Nahum 1:14; Habakkuk 2:18, and Bishop Horsley.11:1-7 When Israel were weak and helpless as children, foolish and froward as children, then God loved them; he bore them as the nurse does the sucking child, nourished them, and suffered their manners. All who are grown up, ought often to reflect upon the goodness of God to them in their childhood. He took care of them, took pains with them, not only as a father, or a tutor, but as a mother, or nurse. When they were in the wilderness, God showed them the way in which they should go, and bore them up, taking them by the arms. He taught them the way of his commandments by the ceremonial law given by Moses. He took them by the arms, to guide them, that they might not stray, and to hold them up, that they might not stumble and fall. God's spiritual Israel are all thus supported. It is God's work to draw poor souls to himself; and none can come to him except he draw them. With bands of love; this word signifies stronger cords than the former. He eased them of the burdens they had long groaned under. Israel is very ungrateful to God. God's counsels would have saved them, but their own counsels ruined them. They backslide; there is no hold of them, no stedfastness in them. They backslide from me, from God, the chief good. They are bent to backslide; they are ready to sin; they are forward to close with every temptation. Their hearts are fully set in them to do evil. Those only are truly happy, whom the Lord teaches by his Spirit, upholds by his power, and causes to walk in his ways. By his grace he takes away the love and dominion of sin, and creates a desire for the blessed feast of the gospel, that they may feed thereon, and live for ever.As they called them, so they went from them - The prophet changes his tone, no longer speaking of that one first call of God to Israel as a whole, whereby He brought out Israel as one man, His one son; which one call he obeyed. Here he speaks of God's manifold calls to the people, throughout their whole history, which they as often disobeyed, and not disobeyed only, but went contrariwise. "They called them." Whether God employed Moses, or the judges, or priests, or kings, or prophets, to call them, it was all one. Whenever or by whomsoever they were called, they turned away in the opposite direction, to serve their idols. They proportioned and fitted, as it were, their disobedience to God's long-suffering. : "Then chiefly they threw off obedience, despised their admonitions, and worked themselves up the more franticly to a zeal for the sin which they had begun." "They," God's messengers, "called; so," in like manner, "they went away from them. They sacrificed unto Baalim," i. e., their many Baals, in which they cherished idolatry, cruelty, and fleshly sin. : So "when Christ came and called them manifoldly, as in the great day of the feast, "If any man thirst, let him come unto Me and drink," the more diligently He called them, the more diligently they went away from Him, and returned to their idols, to the love and possession of riches and houses and pleasures, for whose sake they despised the truth." 2. As they called them—"they," namely, monitors sent by Me. "Called," in Ho 11:1, suggests the idea of the many subsequent calls by the prophets.

went from them—turned away in contempt (Jer 2:27).

Baalim—images of Baal, set up in various places.

As they; Moses and Aaron, and other prophets, and holy, zealous judges and priests, as Samuel, &c.

Called; advised, persuaded, entreated, and urged by exhortations.

Them; the whole house of Israel, and among these the ten tribes, or Ephraim.

So they Israelites, called and entreated, especially they of that age when the division was made, and ever since.

Went from; frowardly and most disingenuously apostatized more and more, as the prophet, Isaiah 1:5. Horrible ingratitude so to requite God!

From them; from the prophets’ counsel and commands, delivered as they came from God.

They sacrificed unto Baalim; in the desert they began this apostacy, joined themselves to Baal-peor, Numbers 25:3, and worshipped the calf, Exodus 32:4-6, and held on with obstinacy in it.

Graven images; images of their gods, before which they performed another part of religious worship, burning incense before them. As they called them, so they went from them,.... That is, the prophets of the Lord, the true prophets, called Israel to the worship and service of God; but they turned a deaf ear to them, and their backs upon them; and the more they called to them, the further they went from them, and from the way of their duty; see Hosea 11:7. So the Targum,

"I sent the prophets to teach them, but they wandered from them;''

Moses and Aaron were sent unto them, and called them out of Egypt, but they hearkened not unto them; see Exodus 6:9; in later times the prophets were sent unto them, to exhort them to their duty, and to reclaim them from their evil ways, but they despised and refused to attend to their advice and instructions; and this was continued to the times of Israel, or the ten tribes, departing from the house of David, and setting up idolatrous worship; and during their revolt and apostasy: but all in vain. So after Christ was called out of Egypt, he and his apostles, and John the Baptist before them, called them to hearken to him, but they turned away from them. Aben Ezra interprets it of the false prophets, who called them to idolatry, and they went after them. Schmidt understands it of the Israelites calling one another to it, and going after it, for their own sakes, and because it pleased them, and was agreeable to them;

they sacrificed to Baalim, and burnt incense to graven images: they joined themselves to Baalpeor, and worshipped the golden calf, fashioned with a graving tool, in the wilderness; they sacrificed to Baalim, one or another of them, in the times of the judges, and of Ahab, and committed idolatry with other graven images, of which burning incense is a part. And the Jews in Christ's time, instead of hearkening to him and his apostles, followed the traditions of the elders, and the dictates of the Scribes and Pharisees, who were their Baals, their lords and masters and they sought for life and righteousness by their own works, which was sacrificing to their net, and burning incense to their drag; all this was great ingratitude. Next follows a narrative of other benefits done to this people.

As they called them, so they {b} went from them: they sacrificed unto Baalim, and burned incense to graven images.

(b) They rebelled and went a contrary way when the Prophets called them to repentance.

EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
2. As they called them, &c.] Or, The more they called them, &c. (comp. Hosea 4:7). Since Israel disobeyed the first call by Moses, prophets were sent to repeat the call, but their preaching only seemed to increase Israel’s obstinacy (comp. Isaiah 6:9-10; Jeremiah 7:25-26). What, then, was the good of prophecy? It kept up a church within the nation, and it developed ideas which bore fruit in due time.

unto Baalim, &c.] Rather, to the Baalim (see on Hosea 2:13) … to the graven images.Verse 2. - As they called them, so they went from them: they sacrificed unto Baalim, and burned incense to graven images.

(1) Adverting to his own call mentioned in the first verse, God here refers to the many subsequent calls which he addressed to them through his servants the prophets and other messengers.

(2) The subject of the verb is erroneously understood by some, as, for example, Aben Ezra and Eichhorn, to be the idols, or their false priests or prophets; while

(3) Jerome is also mistaken in referring the words to the time of Israel's rebelling when Moses and Aaron wished to lead them out of Egypt. The correct reference is that first stated, and the sense is that, instead of appreciating the invitations and monitions of the prophets of God, they showed their utter insensibility and thanklessness, turning away from them in contempt and scorn. Nay, the more the messengers of God called them, the more they turned a deaf ear to those who were their truest friends and best advisers. Pursuing their idolatrous practices, they sacrificed to Baal, that is to say, the various representations of that idol, and burned incense to their images, whether of wood or stone or precious metal. Thus Kimchi correctly comments as follows: "The prophets which I sent to them called to them morning and evening to turn to Jehovah, so (much the more) did they go away from them, not hearkening to their words nor desisting from their evil works." The word כֵן, even so, denoting the measure or relation, corresponds to ואשר to be supplied in the first clause. The imperfects imply continuance of action or a general truth.

(4) The Septuagint rendering, followed by the Syriac, is ἐκ προσώπου μου αὐτοὶ, "from my presence: they;" as if they had read on מִפָנַי הֵם instead of the present text. The angel gives to the prophet yet one revelation more regarding the duration of the time of tribulation and its end, which should help him to understand the earlier answer. The words, "from the time that the daily sacrifice shall be taken away, and the abomination of the desolation," so distinctly point back to Daniel 11:31, that they must here be referred, as there, to the wickedness of Antiochus in his desecrating the sanctuary of the Lord. The circumstance that the שׁקּוּץ (abomination) is here described as שׁמם and in Daniel 11:31 as משׁמם, indicates no material distinction. In Daniel 11:31, where the subject spoken of is the proceedings of the enemy of God causing desolation, the abomination is viewed as משׁמם, bringing desolation; here, with reference to the end of those proceedings, as שׁמם, brought to desolation; cf. under Daniel 9:27. All interpreters therefore have found in these two verses statements regarding the duration of the persecutions carried on by Antiochus Epiphanes, and have sought to compare them with the period of 2300 evening-mornings mentioned in Daniel 8:14, in order thus to reckon the duration of the time during which this enemy of God shall prosecute his wicked designs.

But as the opinion is regarding the reckoning of the 2300 evening-mornings in Daniel 8:14 are very diverse from each other, so also are they here. First the interpretation of ולתת (and set up) is disputed. Wieseler is decidedly wrong in thinking that it designates the terminsu ad quem to הוּסר מעת (from the time shall be removed), as is generally acknowledged. Hitzig thinks that with ולתת the foregoing infin. הוּסר is continued, as Ecclesiastes 9:1; Jeremiah 17:10; Jeremiah 19:12, and therewith a second terminus a quo supposed. This, however, is only admissible if this second terminus stands in union with the first, and a second terminus ad quem also stands over against it as the parallel to the later terminus ad quem. Both here denote: the daily sacrifice shall be taken away forty-five days before the setting up of the βδέλυγμα ἐρημώσεως, and by so much the date in Daniel 12:12 comes below that of Daniel 12:11. According to this, both verses are to be understood thus: from the time of the taking away of the daily sacrifice as 1290 days, and from the time of the setting up of the abomination of desolation are 1335 days. But this interpretation is utterly destitute of support. In the first place, Hitzig has laid its foundation, that the setting up of the idol-abomination is separated from the cessation of the worship of Jehovah by forty-five days, only by a process of reasoning in a circle. In the second place, the המחכּה אשׁרי (blessed is he that waiteth), Daniel 12:12, decidedly opposes the combining of the 1335 days with the setting up of the idol-abomination; and further, the grammatical interpretation of ולתת is not justified. The passages quoted in its favour are all of a different character; there a clause with definite time always goes before, on which the infinitive clause depends. Kranichfeld seeks therefore to take הוּסר also not as an infinitive, but as a relative asyndetical connection of the praeter. proph. to עת, by which, however, no better result is gained. For with the relative interpretation of הוּסר: the time, since it is taken away ... ולתת cannot so connect itself that this infinitive yet depends on עת. The clause beginning with ולתת cannot be otherwise interpreted than as a final clause dependent on וגו הוּסר מעת; thus here and in Daniel 2:16, as in the passages quoted by Hitzig, in the sense: to set (to set up) the abomination, so that the placing of the abomination of desolation is viewed as the object of the taking away of the תּמיד (daily sacrifice). From this grammatically correct interpretation of the two clauses it does not, however, follow that the setting up of the idol-abomination first followed later than the removal of the daily sacrifice, so that ולתת signified "to set up afterwards," as Kliefoth seeks to interpret it for the purpose of facilitating the reckoning of the 1290 days. Both can be done at the same time, the one immediately after the other.

A terminus ad quem is not named in both of the definitions. This appears from the words "blessed is he that waiteth ... ." By this it is said that after the 1335 days the time of tribulation shall be past. Since all interpreters rightly understand that the 1290 and the 1335 days have the same terminus a quo, and thus that the 1290 days are comprehended in the 1335, the latter period extending beyond the former by only forty-five days; then the oppression cannot properly last longer than 1290 days, if he who reaches to the 1335 days is to be regarded as blessed.

With regard to the reckoning of these two periods of time, we have already shown that neither the one nor the other accords with the 2300 evening-mornings, and that there is no ground for reckoning those 2300 evening-mornings for the sake of these verses before us as 1150 days. Moreover, we have there already shown how the diversity of the two statements is explained from this, that in Daniel 8:14 a different terminus a quo is named from that in Daniel 12:11.; and besides have remarked, that according to 1 Macc. 1:54, 59, cf. with 4:52, the cessation of the Mosaic order of worship by sacrifice lasted for a period of only three years and ten days. Now if these three years and ten days are reckoned according to the sun-year at 365 days, or according to the moon-year at 354 days with the addition of an intercalary month, they amount to 1105 or 1102 days. The majority of modern interpreters identify, it is true, the 1290 days with the 3 1/2 times ( equals years), and these two statements agree so far, since 3 1/2 years make either 1279 or 1285 days. But the identifying of the two is not justified. In Daniel 12:11 the subject plainly is the taking away of the worship of Jehovah and the setting up of the worship of idols in its stead, for which the Maccabean times furnish an historical fulfilment; in Daniel 12:7,however, the angel speaks of a tribulation which extends so far that the strength of the holy people is altogether broken, which cannot be said of the oppression of Israel by Antiochus, since a stop was put to the conduct of this enemy by the courageous revolt of the Maccabees, and the power of valiant men put an end to the abomination of the desolation of the sanctuary. The oppression mentioned in Daniel 12:7 corresponds not only in fact, but also with respect to its duration, with the tribulation which the hostile king of the time of the end, who shall arise from the fourth world-kingdom, shall bring upon the holy people, since, as already remarked, the 3 1/2 times literally correspond with Daniel 7:25. But Daniel 12:11 and Daniel 12:12 treat of a different, namely, an earlier, period of oppression than Daniel 12:7, so the 1290 and the 1335 days are not reckoned after the 3 1/2 times (Daniel 12:11 and Daniel 7:35); and for the Maccabean period of tribulation there remain only the 2300 evening-mornings (Daniel 8:14) for comparison, if we count the evening-mornings, contrary to the usage of the words, as half-days, and so reduce them to 1150 days. But if herewith we take into consideration the historical evidence of the duration of the oppression under Antiochus, the 1290 days would agree with it only if we either fix the taking away of the legal worship from 185 to 188 days, i.e., six months and five or eight days, before the setting up of the idol-altar on Jehovah's altar of burnt-offering, or, if these two facta occurred simultaneously, extend the terminus ad quem by six months and five or eight days beyond the day of the re-consecration of the altar. For both suppositions historical evidence is wanting. The former is perhaps probable from 1 Macc. 4:45, cf. with v. 54; but, on the contrary, for the second, history furnishes no epoch-making event of such significance as that the cessation of the oppression could be defined by it.

The majority of modern interpreters, in the reckoning of the 1290 and the 1335 days, proceed from Daniel 8:14, and with them Kliefoth holds, firstly, that the 2300 evening-mornings are 1150 days, the termination of which constitutes the epoch of the re-consecration of the temple, on the 25th of the month Kisleu of the year 148 of the Seleucidan aera (i.e., 164 b.c.); and secondly, he supposes that the terminus a quo of the 2300 evening-mornings (Daniel 8:14 and of the 1290 or 1335 days is the same, namely, the taking of Jerusalem by Apollonius (1 Macc. 1:29ff.), and the setting aside of the תּמיד which followed immediately after it was taken, about 140 days earlier than the setting up of the idol-altar. As the terminus ad quem of the 2300 evening-mornings the re-consecration of the temple is taken, with which the power of Antiochus over Israel was broken, and the beginning of the restoration made. No terminus ad quem is named in this passage before us, but perhaps it lies in the greater number of the days, as well as in this, that this passage speaks regarding the entire setting aside of the power of Antiochus-an evidence and a clear argument for this, that in Daniel 12:11, Daniel 12:12 a further terminus ad quem, reaching beyond the purification of the temple, is to be supposed. This terminus is the death of Antiochus. "It is true," Kliefoth further argues, "we cannot establish it to a day and an hour, that between the putting away of the daily sacrifice and the death of Antiochus 1290 days intervened, since of both facta we do not know the date of the day. But this we know from the book of the Maccabees, that the consecration of the temple took place on the 25th day of the month Kisleu in the 148th year of the Seleucidan aera, and that Antiochus died in the 149th year; and if we now add the 140 days, the excess of 2300 above 1290 after the consecration of the temple, we certainly come into the year 149. The circumstance also, that in the whole connection of this chapter the tendency is constantly toward the end of Antiochus, the Antichrist, induces us to place the death of that persecutor as the terminus ad quem of the 1290 days. Consequently we shall not err if, with Bleek, Kirmss, Hitzig, Delitzsch, Hofmann, Auberlen, Zndel, we suppose, that as the purifying of the temple is the end of the 2300 evening-mornings, so the death of Antiochus is the end of the 1290 days. The end of the 1335 days, Daniel 12:12, must then be an event which lies forty-five days beyond the death of Antiochus, and which certainly attests the termination of the persecution under Antiochus and the commencement of better days, and which at least bears clear evidence of the introduction of a better time, and of a settled and secure state of things. We are not able to adduce proof of such a definite event which took place exactly fort-five days after the death of Antiochus, simply because we do not know the date of the death of Antiochus. The circumstances, however, of the times after the death of Antiochus furnish the possibility of such an event. The successor of Antiochus Epiphanes, Antiochus Eupator, certainly wrote to the Jews, after they had vanquished his host under Lysias, asking from them a peace; but the alienation between them continued nevertheless, and did not absolutely end till the victory over Nicanor, 2 Macc. 11-15. Hence there was opportunity enough for an event of the kind spoken of, though we may not be able, from the scantiness and the chronological uncertainty of the records of these times, to prove it positively." Hereupon Kliefoth enters upon the conjectures advanced by Hitzig regarding the unknown joyful event, and finds that nothing important can be brought forward in opposition to this especially, that the termination of the 1335 days may be the point of time when the tidings of the death of Antiochus, who died in Babylonia, reached the Jews in Palestine, and occasioned their rejoicing, since it might easily require forty-five days to carry the tidings of that even to Jerusalem; and finally he throws out the question, whether on the whole the more extended period of 1335 days must have its termination in a single definite event, whether by the extension of the 1290 days by fort-five days the meaning may not be, that whoever lives beyond this period of 1290 days, i.e., the death of Antiochus, in patience and in fidelity to the truth, is to be esteemed blessed. "The forty-five days were then only added to express the living beyond that time, and the form of this expression was chosen for the purpose of continuing that contained in Daniel 12:11."

We cannot, however, concur in this view, because not only is its principal position without foundation, but also its contents are irreconcilable with historical facts. To change the 2300 evening-mornings into 1150 days cannot be exegetically justified, because according to the Hebrew mode of computation evening and morning do not constitute a half but a whole day. But if the 2300 evening-mornings are to be reckoned as so many days, then neither their terminus a quo nor their terminus ad quem stands in a definite relation to the 1290 days, from which a conclusion may be drawn regarding the terminus ad quem of the latter. Then the death of Antiochus Epiphanes does not furnish a turning-point for the commencement of a better time. According to 1 Macc. 6:18-54, the war against the Jews was carried on by his successor Eupator more violently than before. And on the news that Philippus, returning from Persia, sought to deprive him of the government, Lysias advised the king to make peace with the Jews, and to promise to them that they would be permitted to live according to their own laws. On this the Jews opened the citadel of Zion; but the king, after he had entered into it, violated his oath, and ordered its walls to be demolished. It was not till two years after the death of Antiochus Epiphanes that Judas gained a decisive victory over Nicanor, which was celebrated by the Jews by a joyful festival, which they resolved to keep every year in memory of that victory (1 Macc. 7:26-50). In these circumstances it is wholly impossible to suppose an event forty-five days after the death of Antiochus which could clearly be regarded as the beginning of a better time, and of a settled and secure state of things, or to regard the reception in Palestine of the news of the death of Antiochus as an event so joyful, that they were to be esteemed as blessed who should live to hear the tidings.

After all, we must oppose the opinion that the 1290 and the 1335 days are to be regarded as historical and to be reckoned chronologically, ad we are decidedly of opinion that these numbers are to be interpreted symbolically, notwithstanding that days as a measure of time are named. This much seems to be certain, that the 1290 days denote in general the period of Israel's sorest affliction on the part of Antiochus Epiphanes by the taking away of the Mosaic ordinance of worship and the setting up of the worship of idols, but without giving a statement of the duration of this oppression which can be chronologically reckoned. By the naming of "days" instead of "times" the idea of an immeasurable duration of the tribulation is set aside, and the time of it is limited to a period of moderate duration which is exactly measured out by God. But this is more strictly represented by the second definition, by which it is increased by 45 days: 1335 days, with the expiry of which the oppression shall so wholly cease, that every one shall be blessed who lives till these days come. For 45 days have the same relation to 1290 that 1 1/2 have to 43, and thus designate a proportionally very brief time. But as to this relation, the two numbers themselves show nothing. If we reduce them to the measure of time usual for the definition of longer periods, the 1290 days amount to 54 months, or 3 years and 7 months, and the 1335 days to 44 1/2 months, or 3 years and 8 1/2 months, since generally, and still more in symbolical definitions of time, the year is wont to be reckoned at 12 months, and the months at 30 days. Each of the two periods of time thus amounts to a little more than 3 1/2 years; the first exceeds by 1 month and the second by 2 1/2 months, only a little more than the half of 7 years - a period occurring several times in the O.T. as the period of divine judgments. By the reduction of the days to years and parts of a year the two expressions are placed in a distinct relation to the 3 1/2 times, which already appears natural by the connection of the two questions in Daniel 12:6, Daniel 12:8. On the one hand, by the circumstance that the 1290 days amount to somewhat more than 3 1/2 years, the idea that "times" stands for years is set aside; but on the other hand, by the use of "days" as a measure of time, the obscurity of the idea: time, times, and half a time, is lessened, and Daniel's inquiry as to the end of the terrible things is answered in a way which might help him to the understanding of the first answer, which was to him wholly unintelligible.

Such an answer contains the two definitions of the time under the supposition that the hostile undertakings of Antiochus against Judaism, in their progress and their issue, form a type of the persecution of the last enemy Antichrist against the church of the Lord, or that the taking away of the daily sacrifice and the setting up of the idol-abomination by Antiochus Epiphanes shows in a figure how the Antichrist at the time of the end shall take away the worship of the true God, renounce the God of his fathers, and make war his god, and thereby bring affliction upon the church of God, of which the oppression which Antiochus brought upon the theocracy furnished a historical pattern. But this typical relation of the two periods of oppression is clearly set forth in Daniel 11:21-12:3, since in the conduct and proceedings of the hostile king two stadia are distinguished, which so correspond to each other in all essential points that the first, Daniel 11:21-35, is related to the second, Daniel 11:35-12:3, as the beginning and the first attempt is related to the complete accomplishment. This also appears in the wars of this king against the king of the south (Daniel 11:25-29, cf. with Daniel 11:40-43), and in the consequences which this war had for his relation to the people of God. On his return from the first victorious war against the south, he lifted up his heart against the holy covenant (Daniel 11:28), and being irritated by the failure of the renewed war against the south and against the holy covenant, he desolated the sanctuary (vv. 30, 31); finally, in the war at the time of the end, when Egypt and the lands fell wholly under his power, and when, alarmed by tidings from the east and the north, he thought to destroy many, he erected his palace - tent in the Holy Land, so that he might here aim a destructive blow against all his enemies - in this last assault he came to his end (Daniel 11:40-45).

Yet more distinctly the typical relation shows itself in the description of the undertakings of the enemy of God against the holy covenant, and their consequences for the members of the covenant nation. In this respect the first stadium of his enmity against the God of Israel culminates in the taking away of His worship, and in the setting up of the abomination of desolation, i.e., the worship of idols, in the sanctuary of the Lord. Against this abomination the wise of the people of God raise themselves up, and they bring by their rising up "a little help," and accomplish a purification of the people (Daniel 11:31-35). In the second stadium, i.e., at the time of the end, the hostile king raises himself against the God of gods, and above every god (Daniel 11:37), and brings upon the people of God an oppression such as has never been from the beginning of the world till now; but this oppression ends, by virtue of the help of the archangel Michael, with the deliverance of the people of God and the consummation by the resurrection of the dead, of some to everlasting life, and of some to everlasting shame (Daniel 12:1-3).

If thus the angel of the Lord, after he said to Daniel that he might rest as to the non-understanding of his communication regarding the end of the wonderful things (Daniel 12:7), because the prophecy shall at the time of the end give to the wise knowledge for the purifying of many through the tribulation, so answers the question of Daniel as to the אלּה אחרית that he defines in symbolically significant numbers the duration of the sufferings from the removal of the worship of Jehovah to the commencement of better times, with which all oppression shall cease, then he gave therewith a measure of time, according to which all those who have understanding, who have lived through this time of oppression, or who have learned regarding it from history, may be able to measure the duration of the last tribulation and its end so far beforehand, as, according to the fatherly and wise counsel of God, it is permitted to us to know the times of the end and of our consummation. For, from the comparison of this passage with that in Daniel 8:14 regarding the duration of the crushing under feet of the holy people by the enemy rising from the Javanic world-kingdom, it is clear that as the 2300 evening-mornings do not contain a complete heptad of years, so the 1290 days contain only a little more than half a heptad. In this lies the comfort, that the severest time of oppression shall not endure much longer than half the time of the whole period of oppression. And if we compare with this the testimony of history regarding the persecution of the Old Covenant people under Antiochus, in consequence of which God permitted the suppression of His worship, and the substitution of idol-worship in its stead, for not fully 3 1/2 years, but only for 3 years and 10 days, then we are able to gather the assurance that He shall also shorten, for the sake of His elect, the 3 1/2 times of the last tribulation. We should rest here, that His grace is sufficient for us (2 Corinthians 12:9). For as God revealed to the prophets, who prophesied of the grace that should come unto us, the sufferings of Christ and the glory that should follow, that they might search and inquire what and what manner of time the Spirit of Christ who was in them did signify; so in the times of the accomplishment, we who are living are not exempted from searching and inquiring, but are led by the prophetic word to consider the signs of the times in the light of this word, and from that which is already fulfilled, as well as from the nature and manner of the fulfilment, to confirm our faith, for the endurance amid the tribulations which prophecy has made known to us, that God, according to His eternal gracious counsel, has measured them according to their beginning, middle, and end, that thereby we shall be purified and guarded for the eternal life.

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