9 0 9 0 0 9:1 A star fall: This may mean the fall and apostasy of great and learned men from the true faith. Or a whole nation falling into error and separating from the church, not having the sign of God in their foreheads. And there was given to him the key of the bottomless pit. . .That is, to the angel, not to the fallen star. To this angel was given the power, which is here signified by a key, of opening hell. 9 1 9 0 0 9:3 There came out locusts: These may be devils in Antichrist's time, having the appearance of locusts, but large and monstrous, as here described. Or they may be real locusts, but of an extraordinary size and monstrous shape, such as were never before seen on earth, sent to torment those who have not the sign (or seal) of God on their foreheads. Some commentators by these locusts understand heretics, and especially those heretics, that sprung from Jews, and with them denied the divinity of Jesus Christ; as Theodotus, Praxeas, Noetus, Paul of Samosata, Sabellius, Arius, etc. These were great enemies of the Christian religion; they tormented and infected the souls of men, stinging them like scorpions, with the poison of their heresies. Others have explained these locusts, and other animals, mentioned in different places throughout this sacred and mystical book, in a most absurd, fanciful, and ridiculous manner; they make Abaddon the Pope, and the locusts to be friars mendicant, etc. Here it is thought proper, not to enter into any controversy upon that subject, as the inventors of these fancies have been already answered, and fully refuted by many controvertists: besides, those who might be inposed on by such chimerical writers, are in these days much better informed. 9 3 9 0 0 Content-type: text/html; charset=utf-8
¤ Chapter 9: Locusts come forth from the bottomless pit. The vision of the army of horsemen.