“From a territorial area of less than nine hundred thousand square miles, it has expanded into over three millions and a half—fifteen times larger than that of Great Britain and France combined—with a shore-line, including Alaska, equal to the entire circumference of the earth, and with a domain within these lines far wider than that of the Romans in their proudest days of conquest and renown. With a river, lake, and coastwise commerce estimated at over two thousand millions of dollars per year; with railway traffic of four to six thousand millions per year, and the annual domestic exchanges of the country, running up to nearly ten thousand millions per year; with over two thousand millions of dollars invested in manufacturing, mechanical, and mining industry; with over five hundred millions of acres of land in actual occupancy, valued, with their appurtenances, at over seven thousand millions of dollars, and producing annually crops valued at over three thousand millions of dollars; with a realm which, if the density of Belgium’s population were possible, would be vast enough to include all the present inhabitants of the world; and with equal rights guaranteed to even the poorest and humblest of our forty millions of people, we can, with a manly pride akin to that which distinguished the palmiest days of Rome, claim as the noblest title of the world, ’I am an American citizen.’”
And how long a time has it taken for this wonderful transformation? In the language of Edward Everett, “They are but lately dead who saw the first-born of the pilgrims;” and Mr. Townsend (p. 21) says: “The memory of one man can swing from that time of primitive government to this—when thirty-eight millions of people living on two oceans and in two zones, are represented in Washington, and their consuls and ambassadors are in every port and metropolis of the globe.”
Is this enough? The only objection we can anticipate is that this nation has progressed too fast and too far—that the government has already outgrown the symbol. But what shall be thought of those who deny that it has any place in prophecy at all? No; this prodigy has its place on the prophetic page; and the path which has thus far led us to the conclusion that the two-horned beast is the prophetic symbol of the United States, is hedged in on either side by walls of adamant that reach to heaven. To make any other application is an utter impossibility. The thought would be folly, and the attempt, abortion.
Character Of The Government Represented By The Two-horned Beast.
Having given us data by which we determine the location, chronology, and rapid rise of this power, John now proceeds to describe the appearance of the two-horned beast, and speak of his acts in such a manner as to clearly indicate his character both apparent and real. Every specification thus far examined has held the application imperatively to the United States. We shall find this one no less strong in the same direction.