The Idea of a University

true, besides the course of events, and which meanwhile are to be received at least with attention and deference. Sometimes they are comments on Scripture prophecy, sometimes on other obscurities or mysteries. It was once an opinion, for instance, drawn from the sacred text, that the Christian Dispensation was to last a thousand years, and no more; the event disproved it. A still more exact and plausible tradition, derived from Scripture, was that which asserted that, when the Roman Empire should fall to pieces, Antichrist should appear, who should be followed at once by the Second Coming. Various Fathers thus interpret St. Paul, and Bellarmine receives the interpretation as late as the sixteenth century. The event alone can decide if, under any aspect of Christian history, it is true; but at present we are at least able to say that it is not true in that broad plain sense in which it was once received.

Passing from comments on prophetical passages of

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