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12.

and nominally, either of a second Resurrec.

tion, or a second Judgment. But each of Revel. xx. them is hinted at and implied in that Vision 4, 5, &c. of St. Yohn, which gives us a View of the Ver. 4, &

Millennium; that one will be at the Beginning, and the other at the End of it. And as for the Resurrection, in other Places of the sacred Writings, sometimes Regard is had to the first, and sometimes to the second, without distinguishing accurately. St. Paul in his Epistle to the Corinthians treats chiefly, if not solely, of the last Resurrection, as was be

fore observed : But Christ in St. Luke seems to Luke xiv. point at the first, which he calls, The Refur14, 15. rection of the Juft, not of all, but of the

Just separately: Such as is the first Resurrection, in which the Wicked are to have no

Psal. i. 5.) which will be the Time of the first Retribution. And this Resurrection of the Just, answers to tñ taniyyeverią, The Regeneration, in which likewise Christ promises the Reward to his Saints, Matt. xix. 28, 29. Lastly, in the second, and last Resurrection, the Glory of the Just will find its Accomplishment, when Mortality being swallow'd up of Life, and their Terrestrial being converted into Celestial and glorious Bodies, they shall be really equal, and like to the Angels. .

This is the End of human Affairs, and this their Confummation. But now some may enquire concerning the Earth, What will

become

become of that, when its Inhabitants all have left it? Concerning this Matter, and others that have Relation to it, we have, in the Theory of the Earth, given our Conjectures. But since these are doubtful and problematical Points, and, as it were, out of the Compass of the Christian Doctrine, we did not think it proper to insert any Thing of them here. And so much for these Matters.

CHAP. X.

Of Heaven and Hell. What fort of Heaven

that of the Christians is, and how far it may be said to be local. What Hell is; whether there is, or will be any Subterranean, or any other local, corporeal, and external Hell, before the Day of Judgment, and Conflagration of the World. Of the Punishments of Hell; whether they are to be looked upon as finite, or infinite, or indefinite.

ND now we have seen an End of all A human Things upon Earth; and Heaven and Hell come next to be consider'd. By the Word Heaven, the Christians understand a State and Place of future Felicity, or Seats of beatified Souls: And these Seats they place in a sublime Station, remote from

Earth, Earth, and high in the Starry Regions, and call them Heaven. To this point there is an Agreement between the Christian Doctrine, and the Opinions of the wifest among the Heathens, and the Sentiments of their Phi. losophers, who sent back those Souls that had behaved themselves well on Earth, to that Heaven, from which they at first descended. But as for the Poets, a Generation audacious and lawless, and who represent and misrepresent the Doctrines of the Ancients according to their Pleasure, and shew the Truth in Disguise and Masquerade, they place their Elysian Fields, their Seats of the Blessed, in I know not what Lands, and fortunate Ilands; or, which is yet more incongruous, under Ground, and in fubterranean Regions. Thus grofly does Virgil philosophize, to the Capacity and Taste of the People, and that, perhaps, from an obscure or corrupt fort of Knowledge, either of the ancient, or the future Paradise. 'Tis true, indeed, the Saints will enjoy a happy Life in that new Earth, and that second Paradise : But the Question is not here concerning that intermediate Happiness, but the supreme Beatitude and Seat of the Saints, after the last Refurrection, at the End of the Millennium, when putting on their celestial Bodies, and changing their Seats, they Thall enjoy a consummate Glory, and an inconceivable Felicity.

THAT

That these Seats are celestial, or supercelestial, all Christians agree; I say, or Supercelestial; for the Scholastick Doctors assert, that a certain Empyrean, or fiery Heaven, superior to all the rest, will be the Habitation

happy. But besides, that no such fiery Heaven appears to us, by the Help either of Sense or Reason, except the Bodies of the Sun, and the. fixed Stars; there is no such Order of the Heavens, and no such System of the World as these Doctors imagine : For they imagine that all the Heavens are concentrical, or that they belong to one and the same Centre, and are involved and wrapt up in each other, like the Coats of an Onion, which is in some Measure true of the Planetary Orbs, but by no Means of the fixed Stars : For neither are they all of them fixed in one Superficies, as it were in the same Ceiling, at an equal Distance every where from the Earth; but some of them are immers'd deeper than others in the celestial Regions, and are unequally distant from us by immense immensurable Spaces, and every one moves in its own peculiar Orb. And when these Authors place the Firmament, or the Orb of the fixed Stars above the Planets, then, other Orbs, Orb above Orb, till they come to the first Mover, as they are pleased to express themselves, and then on the Summit of all, or in the fupream Circle of the Universe,

the

the Empyrean Heaven, they build up a Frame of the Heavens that is intirely fictitious, and an Order of Stars, that is not incommodious for the Vulgar, but is utterly unworthy of Astronomers or Philosophers. And they seem to have contriv'd this Empyrean Heaven on the Summit of all the Orbs, after the Example of their elemental Fire: For, as they have disposed of this Fire in the superior Part of the elemental World, because it is more light and subtle than the rest, so in the Heavens they place this fiery or this flaming Orb, as being more pure and excellent than them all, in the supream Region of the Universe. But they talk in either Case abfurdly: For neither is there any such fiery Sphere in the outward Part of the sublunary World; and in the Spheres of the fixed Stars, the fiery Matter dwells not in the Ends or the Extremity of the Orb, but has its Place in the Middle, and constitutes there a bright and a flaming Star. So that unless you will place the Habitation of the Souls of the Just amidst these Flames, that is, in the Sun, or some other Stars, you will find nothing besides of Empyrean through all the Extent of Heaven. .

But though the Empyrean Heaven in the Sense and Situation in which 'tis set forth above appears to me to be a mere Fiction, yet I see nothing that can hinder our Belief, that among the celestial Orbs, as among the Stars, some are more bright, more flaming, and,

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