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From Rev. Doctors Brownlee and De Witt.
"The work, entitled a Key to the Revelation, we have heard explained, and much of it read, by the author, Rev. Mr. Smith. It is the fruit, we understand, of many years study of the prophecies. And Mr. Smith has evidently bestowed much pains to arrive at the true and correct meaning of the symbolic language of prophecy. The work is, in our judgment, of deep and laboured research. There is much ingenuity in his arguments, and his historical illustrations. It has much that is new; and his theory,-which is brought forward with becoming modesty, seems to us to possess unity and consistency. And it does not consist merely of dry dissertations on different passages; but has a pleasing and edifying spirit of piety pervading the whole. We are persuaded that the book will be interesting and instructive to all classes of Christians: and we recommend it to our friends accordingly." (Signed) W. C. BROWNLEE, THOMAS DE WITT,
Ministers of the Collegiate Reformed Dutch Church, New-York.
New-York, August 7, 1833.
"Having been favoured with the perusal of the Rev. Mr. Smith's "Key to the Revelation," I am happy to express my entire concurrence with the above recommendation of it by the Rev. Drs. Brownlee and De Witt. It may be read with profit by all who desire to know the signs of the times."
New-York, August 14, 1833.
ABSALOM PETERS, Cor. Secr'y. of the Home Missionary Society.
From Rev. Doctor Mc Cartee, Rev. Messrs. Irvin, Spencer, and Mason. "We have heard a portion of the Rev. Mr. Smith's Key to the Revelation read, and its general views explained by the author; and we are very happy to recommend it to the attention and patronage of the Christian public. It is a work of great research and originality, with many very important and ingenious views of Scripture prophecy. The author has evidently made himself acquainted with the peculiarities of symbolic language, and with the general design, as well as with the particular views of the prophetic Scriptures of which he treats. There is a very happy addition to all this,-in the vein of pious and practical feeling and remark, which runs through the work. It is important, peculiarly at the present period, that such works should be patronized, read, and studied; "for the time is at hand!"
R. Mc CARTEE,
Pastor of the Second Associate Presbyterian Church.
Pastor of the Second Presbyterian Church, Brooklyn.
Pastor of the Bleecker-street Presbyterian Church, New-York.
New-York, August 9, 1833.
From Rev. Mr. Parkinson, Pastor of the First Baptist Church, New-York. "Mr. Smith has read to me some of his Lectures on the Revelation; and has added his outlines, views, and the divisions of this work; and, I cheerfully say, that I feel a strong desire to see this work published, hoping it will prove a seasonable help to the church of Christ."
New-York, August 7, 1833.
From the Rev. Mr. Baldwin.
Attempts of inferior and hasty writers on the Revelation have often resulted in mistake, not to say injurious error. Mr. mith's Key to the Revelation has, in my opinion, better claims to our respect. It is clearly a production of deep thought and research. His plan is, to a good extent, new; and the work through. out is interesting. I have read nothing on the Revelation which afforded me equal satisfaction."
ELIHU W. BALDWIN,
New-York, August 15, 1833.
THE Revelation has been esteemed, to a great degree, a sealed book. But God's giving it to man, with urgent directions that it should be studied, understood, and improved, seems a sure pledge that it was not always to remain sealed. That this sublime closing part of our Holy Bible, which should be viewed as the collecting of all the golden rays of the wonders of Divine grace to a kind of burning point,--may be understood, and devoutly improved, is much to be desired. Whenever it shall be presented in an unclouded view (should this in time be the case); its simplicity, probably, will excite surprise! Intellect, erudition, and a patient attention to the nature of its language, and the analogies of prophecy, are no doubt indispensable to a correct investigation of this mystical book. But these are not all; a man may possess them, and yet be as far from the true knowledge of the Apocalypse, as the natural man is from understanding the things of the Spirit of God;—and as the world by its wisdom is from knowing God. To these, must be added not only a new heart, but also a peculiar unction of soul in the spirit of the prophecies, and a devout feeling of the following sentiments," Not by might, nor by power; but by my Spirit, saith the Lord of hosts!" "Not by words which man's wisdom teacheth; but which the Holy Ghost teacheth, comparing spiritual things with spiritual." The strong wind, the earthquake, and the fire, are presented to us as destitute of the presence of God. But the “still small voice" was effectual,—the Lord was there! Happy, if its influence might be shed through our souls. God will so work that all the glory shall be his. See 1 Cor. i. 18-31.
Very early in my ministry I felt a desire to understand the Revelation (as may be seen in a dissertation which I then wrote, and have inserted, on its appropriate text, in
this work, chap. xiv. 6, 7. page 247). My leading studies, and preaching, for more than 42 years, have been on the great doctrines and duties of the gospel; and but little have I ever preached peculiarly on prophecies.
But a convenient portion of my whole ministry I have delighted in devoting to reading and studies on the prophecies, especially on the Revelation. After 18 years of my ministry, I formed the outlines of my present sentiments on the Revelation, which I submitted to the eye of many most able divines in New-England, and had the pleasure of their approbation. These outlines I afterward proceeded to fill up in a course of Lectures on the whole book. Eight years ago I supposed them finished, and exhibited them to some who expressed a desire to read them in print; but the publishing of them I deferred, that I might further watch the signs of the times, and re-examine the work. I now, with the advice of many, give them to the public with only this apology, that the subject is of great interest;—that the public attention should be excited to it ;-and I feel my right, in common with others, to "show also mine opinion.”
Relative to the style of this work ;--I assure the critic, that had it been written on a subject generally understood, and written to please as well as to instruct the literary world; I should deem my repetitions, and often renewed references, with the commonness of the style, unpardonable. But when I recollect the difficulty which I have found in attempting to grasp and retain the sense of the difficult parts of this book; and that the great body of common people will find it no less difficult; I determined to sacrifice all attempt at elegance of composition to the most simple and perspicuous method of instruction.
I will just add-the evidence of the divine authority of the Apocalypse (to the eye of faith and intelligence) arising from the fulfilment of its predictions, and of its composition, is as clear, as that God formed the starry heavens. The disk of the unclouded sun does not more clearly testify that its Creator is God!
BOSTON, July 1, 1833.
One to the Church of Smyrna,
One to the Church of Pergamos,
-CHAP. V.-A sealed book in the hand of God,
LECT. VI. CHAP. VI.-Six seals opened,
Second Seal ;-A red horse, &c. The bloody scenes from
an insurrection of the Jews, in the reign of Trajan,
-CHAP. VIII. Commenced.
Trumpet I.-Hail, fire, and blood, &c., fulfilled by the
Incense offered by Christ on the golden altar,