Apocalyptic Spirituality: Treatises and Letters of Lactantius, Adso of Montier-En-Der, Joachim of Fiore, the Franciscan Spirituals, Savonarola

By Bernard McGinn | Go to book overview

SELECTION D Book of Figures, The Fourteenth Table, The Seven-Headed Dragon 1

I. THE CAPTIONS 2

"There are seven kings. Five have fallen, one is present, and one has not yet come. When he comes, he must remain for a short time" ( Apoc. 17:9-10).

Herod. The First Persecution, that of the Jews. The Time of the Apostles. 3

Nero. The Second Persecution, that of the Pagans. The Time of the Martyrs.

Constantius. 4 The Third Persecution, that of the Heretics. The Time of the Doctors.

Mohammed. The Fourth Persecution, that of the Saracens. The Time of the Virgins.

Mesemoth. 5 The Fifth Persecution, that of the Sons of Babylon in the Spirit and not in the letter. 6 The Time of the Conventuals. 7 "These five have fallen" ( Apoc. 17:10). The fifth persecution belongs to the King of Babylon. You will know later why you can write down Mesemoth for that king.

Saladin. The Sixth Persecution has Begun. The Seventh will Follow. "Another will arise after them and he will be more powerful than the previous ones" ( Dan. 7:24). There are ten kings.

This is the Seventh King, who is properly called Antichrist, although there will be another like him, no less evil, symbolized by the tail. This is that king of whom Daniel says: "There will arise a king of shameless face who will understand dark designs. His power will be strengthened, but not by his own forces. He shall lay waste all things beyond belief" ( Dan. 8:23-24).

Gog. He is the Final Antichrist. 8

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