If there was one who was more deeply concerned in the tragic death of Nimrod that another, it was his wife Semiramis, who, from an originally humble position, had been raised to share with him the throne of Babylon. What, in this emergency shall she do? Shall she quietly forego the pomp and pride to which she has been raised? No. Though the death of her husband has given a rude shock to her power, yet her resolution and unbounded ambition were in nowise checked. On the contrary, her ambition took a still higher flight. In life her husband had been honoured as a hero; in death she will have him worshipped as a god, yea, as the woman's promised seed, "Zero-ashta," * who was destined to bruise the serpent's head, and who, in doing so, was to have his own heel bruised. The patriarchs, and the ancient world in general, were perfectly acquainted with the grand primeval promise of Eden, and they knew right well that the bruising of the heel of the promised seed implied his death, and that the curse could be removed from the world only by the death of the grand Deliverer. If the promise about the bruising of the serpent's head, recorded in Genesis, as made to our first parents, was actually made, and if all mankind were descended from them, then it might be expected that some trace of this promise would be found in all nations. And such is the fact. There is hardly a people or kindred on earth in whose mythology it is not shadowed forth. The Greeks represented their great god Apollo as slaying the serpent Pytho, and Hercules as strangling serpents while yet in his cradle. In Egypt, in India, in Scandinavia, in Mexico, we find clear allusions to the same great truth. "The evil genius," says Wilkinson, "of the adversaries of the Egyptian god Horus is frequently figured under the form of a snake, whose head he is seen piercing with a spear. The same fable occurs in the religion of India, where the malignant serpent Calyia is slain by Vishnu, in his avatar of Crishna ; and the Scandinavian deity Thor was said to have bruised the head of the great serpent with his mace." "The origin of this," he adds, "may be readily traced to the Bible." * In reference to a similar belief among the Mexicans, we find Humboldt saying, that "The serpent crushed by the great spirit Teotl, when he takes the form of one of the subaltern deities, is the genius of evil--a real Kakodaemon." * * Now, in almost all cases, when the subject is examined to the bottom, it turns out that the serpent destroying god is represented as enduring hardships and sufferings that end in his death. Thus the god Thor, while succeeding at last in destroying the great serpent, is represented as, in the very moment of victory, perishing from the venomous effluvia of his breath. * The same would seem to be the way in which the Babylonians represented their great serpent-destroyer among the figures of their ancient sphere. His mysterious suffering is thus described by the Greek poet Aratus, whose language shows that when he wrote, the meaning of the representation had been generally lost, although, when viewed in the light of Scripture, it is surely deeply significant:--
"A human figure, 'whelmed with toil appears; Yet still with name uncertain he remains; Nor known the labour that he thus sustains; But since upon his knees he seems to fall, Him ignorant mortals Engonasis call; And while sublime his awful hands are spread, Beneath him rolls the dragon's horrid head, And his right foot unmoved appears to rest, Fixed on the writhing monster's burnished crest." *
The constellation thus represented is commonly known by the name of "The Kneeler," from this very description of the Greek poet; but it is plain that, as "Engonasis" came from the Babylonians, it must be interpreted, not in a Greek, but in a Chaldee sense, and so interpreted, as the action of the figure itself implies, the title of the mysterious sufferer is just "The Serpent-crusher." * Sometimes, however, the actual crushing of the serpent was represented as much more easy process; yet, even then, death was the ultimate result; and that death of the serpent-destroyer is so described as to leave no doubt whence the fable was borrowed. This is particularly the case with the Indian god Crishna, to whom Wilkinson alludes in the extract already given. In the legend that concerns him, the whole of the primeval promise in Eden is very strikingly embodied. First, he is represented in pictures and images with his foot on the great serpent's head, * and then, after destroying it, he is fabled to have died in consequence of being shot by an arrow in the foot; and, as in the case of Tammuz, great lamentations are annually made for his death. * Even in Greece, also, in the classic story of Paris and Achilles, we have a very plain allusion to that part of the primeval promise, which referred to the bruising of the conqueror's "heel." Achilles, the only son of a goddess, was invulnerable in all points except the heel, but there a wound was deadly. At that his adversary took aim, and death was the result.
Now, if there be such evidence still, that even Pagans knew that it was by dying that the promised Messiah was to destroy death and him that has the power of death, that is the Devil, how much more vivid must have been the impression of mankind in general in regard to this vital truth in the early days of Semiramis, when they were so much nearer the fountain-head of all Divine tradition. When, therefore, the name Zoroastes, "the seed of the woman," was given to him who had perished in the midst of a prosperous career of false worship and apostacy, there can be no doubt of the meaning which that name was intended to convey. And the fact of the violent death of the hero, who, in the esteem of his partisans, had done so much to bless mankind, to make life happy, and to deliver them from the fear of the wrath to come, instead of being fatal to the bestowal of such a title upon him, favoured rather than otherwise the daring design. All that was needed to countenance the scheme on the part of those who wished an excuse for continued apostacy from the true God, was just to give out that, though the great patron of the apostacy had fallen a prey to the malice of men, he had freely offered himself for the good of mankind. Now, this was what was actually done. The Chaldean version of the story of the great Zoroaster is that he prayed to the supreme God of heaven to take away his life; that his prayer was heard, and that he expired, assuring his followers that, if they cherished due regard for his memory, the empire would never depart from the Babylonians. * What Berosus, the Babylonian historian, says of the cutting off of the head of the great god Belus, is plainly to the same effect. Belus, says Berosus, commanded one of the gods to cut off his head, that from the blood thus shed by his own command and with his own consent, when mingled with the earth, new creatures might be formed, the first creation being represented as a sort of a failure. * Thus the death of Belus, who was Nimrod, like that attributed to Zoroaster, was represented as entirely voluntary, and as submitted to for the benefit of the world.
It seems to have been now only when the dead hero was to be deified, that the secret Mysteries were set up. The previous form of apostacy during the life of Nimrod appears to have been open and public. Now, it was evidently felt that publicity was out of the question. The death of the great ringleader of the apostacy was not the death of a warrior slain in battle, but an act of judicial rigour, solemnly inflicted. This is well established by the accounts of the deaths of both Tammuz and Osiris. The following is the account of Tammuz, given by the celebrated Maimonides, deeply read in all the learning of the Chaldeans: "When the false prophet named Thammuz preached to a certain king that he should worship the seven stars and the twelve signs of the Zodiac, that king ordered him to be put to a terrible death. On the night of his death all the images assembled from the ends of the earth into the temple of Babylon, to the great golden image of the Sun, which was suspended between heaven and earth. That image prostrated itself in the midst of the temple, and so did all the images around it, while it related to them all that bad happened to Thammuz. The images wept and lamented all the night long, and then in the morning they flew away, each to his own temple again, to the ends of the earth. And hence arose the custom every year on the first day of the month Thammuz, to mourn and to weep for Thammuz." * There is here, of course, all the extravagance of idolatry, as found in the Chaldean sacred books that Maimonides had consulted; but there is no reason to doubt the fact stated either as to the manner or the cause of the death of Tammuz. In this Chaldean legend, it is stated that it was by the command of a "certain king" that this ringleader in apostacy was put to death. Who could this king be, who was so determinedly opposed to the worship of the host of heaven? From what is related of the Egyptian Hercules, we get very valuable light on this subject. It is admitted by Wilkinson that the most ancient Hercules, and truly primitive one, was he who was known in Egypt as having, "by the power of the gods" * (i.e., by the SPIRIT) fought against and overcome the Giants. Now, no doubt, the title and character of Hercules were afterwards given by the Pagans to him whom they worshipped as the grand deliverer or Messiah, just as the adversaries of the Pagan divinities came to be stigmatised as the "Giants" who rebelled against Heaven. But let the reader only reflect who were the real Giants that rebelled against Heaven. They were Nimrod and his party; for the "Giants" were just the "Mighty ones," of the opposition to the apostacy from the primitive worship? If Shem was at that time alive, as beyond question he was, who so likely as he? In exact accordance with this deduction, we find that one of the names of the primitive Hercules in Egypt was "Sem." *
If "Sem," then, was the primitive Hercules, who overcame the Giants, and that not by mere physical force, but by "the power of God," or the influence of the Holy Spirit, that entirely agrees with his character; and more than that, it remarkably agrees with the Egyptian account of the death of Osiris. The Egyptians say, that the grand enemy of their god overcame him, not by open violence, but that, having entered into a conspiracy with seventy-two of the leading men of Egypt, he got him into his power, put him to death, and then cut his dead body into pieces, and sent the different parts to so many different cities throughout the country. * The real meaning of this statement will appear, if we glance at the judicial institutions of Egypt. Seventy-two was just the number of the judges, both civil and sacred, who, according to the Egyptian law, were required to determine what was to be the punishment of one guilty of so high an offence as that of Osiris, supposing this to have become a matter of judicial inquiry. In determining such a case, there were necessarily two tribunals concerned. First, there were the ordinary judges, who had power of life and death, and who amounted to thirty, * then there was, over and above, a tribunal consisting of forty-two judges, who, if Osiris was condemned to die, had to determine whether his body should be buried or no, for before burial, every one after death had to pass the ordeal of this tribunal. * As burial was refused him, both tribunals would necessarily be concerned; and thus there would be exactly seventy-two persons, under Typho the president, to condemn Osiris to die and to be cut in pieces. What, then, does the statement amount to, in regard to the conspiracy, but just to this, that the great opponent of the idolatrous system which Osiris introduced, had so convinced these judges of the enormity of the offence which he had committed, that they gave up the offender to an awful death, and to ignominy after it, as a terror to any who might afterwards tread in his steps. The cutting of the dead body in pieces, and sending the dismembered parts among the different cities, is paralleled, and its object explained, by what we read in the Bible of the cutting of the dead body of the Levite's concubine in pieces (Judges xix. 29), and sending one of the parts to each of the twelve tribes of Israel; and the similar step taken by Saul, when he hewed the two yoke of oxen asunder, and sent them throughout all the coasts of his kingdom (1 Sam. xi.7). It is admitted by commentators that both the Levite and Saul acted on a patriarchal custom, according to which summary vengeance would be dealt to those who failed to come to the gathering that in this solemn way was summoned. This was declared in so many words by Saul, when the parts of the slaughtered oxen were sent among the tribes: "Whosoever cometh not forth after Saul and after Samuel, so shall it be done to his oxen." In like manner, when the dismembered parts of Osiris were sent among the cities by the seventy-two "conspirators"--in other words, by the supreme judges of Egypt, it was equivalent to a solemn declaration in their name, that "whosoever should do as Osiris had done, so should it be done to him; so should he also be cut in pieces."
When irreligion and apostacy again arose into the ascendant, this act, into which the constituted authorities who had to do with the ringleader of the apostates were led, for the putting down of the combined system of irreligion and despotism set up by Osiris or Nimrod, was naturally the object of intense abhorrence to all his sympathisers; and for his share in it the chief actor was stigmatised as Typho, or "The Evil One." * The influence that this abhorred Typho wielded over the minds of the so-called "conspirators," considering the physical force with which Nimrod was upheld, must have been wonderful, and goes to show, that though his deed in regard to Osiris is veiled, and himself branded by a hateful name, he was indeed none other than that primitive Hercules who overcame the Giants by "the power of God," by the persuasive might of his Holy Spirit.
In connection with this character of Shem, the myth that makes Adonis, who is identified with Osiris, perish by the tusks of a wild boar, is easily unravelled. * The tusk of a wild boar was a symbol. In Scripture, a tusk is called "a horn;" * among many of the Classic Greeks it was regarded in the very same light. * When once it is known that a tusk is regarded as a "horn" according to the symbolism of idolatry, the meaning of the boar's tusks, by which Adonis perished, is not far to seek. The bull's horns that Nimrod wore were the symbol of physical power. The boar's tusks were the symbol of spiritual power. As a "horn" means power, so a tusk, that is, a horn in the mouth, means "power in the mouth;" in other words, the power of persuasion; the very power with which "Sem," the primitive Hercules, was so signally endowed. Even from the ancient traditions of the Gael, we get an item of evidence that at once illustrates this idea of power in the mouth, and connects it with that great son of Noah, on whom the blessing of the Highest, as recorded in Scripture, did especially rest. The Celtic Hercules was called Hercules Ogmius, which, in Chaldee, is "Hercules the Lamenter." * No name could be more appropriate, none more descriptive of the history of Shem, than this. Except our first parent, Adam, there was, perhaps, never a mere man that saw so much grief as he. Not only did he see a vast apostacy, which, with his righteous feelings, and witness as he had been of the awful catastrophe of the flood, must have deeply grieved him; but he lived to bury SEVEN GENERATIONS of his descendants. He lived 502 years after the flood, and as the lives of men were rapidly shortened after that event, no less than SEVEN generations of his lineal descendants died before him (Gen. xi. 10-32). How appropriate a name Ogmius, "The Lamenter or Mourner," for one who had such a history! Now, how is this "Mourning" Hercules represented as putting down enormities and redressing wrongs? Not by his club, like the Hercules of the Greeks, but by the force of persuasion. Multitudes were represented as following him, drawn by fine chains of gold and amber inserted into their ears, and which chains proceeded from his mouth. * There is a great difference between the two symbols-the tusks of a boar and the golden chains issuing from the mouth, that draw willing crows by the ears; but both very beautifully illustrate the same idea--the might of that persuasive power that enabled Shem for a time to withstand the tide of evil that came rapidly rushing in upon the world.
Now when Shem had so powerfully wrought upon the minds of men as to induce them to make a terrible example of the great Apostate, and when that Apostate's dismembered limbs were sent to the chief cities, were no doubt his system had been established, it will be readily perceived that, in these circumstances, if idolatry was to continue--if, above all, it was to take a step in advance, it was indispensable that it should operate in secret. The terror of an execution, inflicted on one so mighty as Nimrod, made it needful that, for some time to come at least, the extreme of caution should be used. In these circumstances, then, began, there can hardly be a doubt, that system of "Mystery," which, having Babylon for its centre, has spread over the world. In these Mysteries, under the seal of secrecy and the sanction of an oath, and by means of all the fertile resources of magic, men were gradually led back to all the idolatry that had been publicly suppressed, while new features were added to that idolatry that made it still more blasphemous than before. That magic and idolatry were twin sisters, and came into the world together, we have abundant evidence. "He" (Zoroaster), says Justin the historian, "was said to be the first that invented magic arts, and that most diligently studied the motions of the heavenly bodies." * The Zoroaster spoken of by Justin is the Bactrian Zoroaster; but this is generally admitted to be a mistake. Stanley, in his History of Oriental Philosophy, concludes that this mistake had arisen from similarity of name, and that from this cause that had been attributed to the Bactrian Zoroaster which properly belonged to the Chaldean, "since it cannot be imagines that the Bactrian was the inventor of those arts in which the Chaldean, who lived contemporary with him, was so much skilled." * Epiphanius had evidently come to the same substantial conclusion before him. He maintains, from the evidence open to him in his day, that it was "Nimrod, that established the sciences of magic and astronomy, the invention of which was subsequently attributed to (the Bactrian) Zoroaster." * As we have seen that Nimrod and the Chaldean Zoroaster are the same, the conclusions of the ancient and the modern inquirers into Chaldean antiquity entirely harmonise. Now the secret system of the Mysteries have vast facilities for imposing on the senses of the initiated by means of the various tricks and artifices of magic. Notwithstanding all the care and precautions of those who conducted these initiations, enough has transpired to give us a very clear insight into their real character. Everything was so contrived as to wind up the minds of the novices to the highest pitch of excitement, that, after having surrendered themselves implicitly to the priests, they might be prepared to receive anything. After the candidates for initiation had passed through the confessional, and sworn the required oaths, "strange and amazing objects," says Wilkinson, "presented themselves. Sometimes the place they were in seemed to shake around them; sometimes it appeared bright and resplendent with light and radiant fire, and then again covered with black darkness, sometimes thunder and lightning, sometimes frightful noises and bellowings, sometimes terrible apparitions astonished the trembling spectators." * Then, at last, the great god, the central object of their worship, Osiris, Tammuz, Nimrod or Adonis, was revealed to them in the way most fitted to soothe their feelings and engage their blind affections. An account of such a manifestation is thus given by an ancient Pagan, cautiously indeed, but yet in such a way as shows the nature of the magic secret by which such an apparent miracle was accomplished: "In a manifestation which one must not reveal.... there is seen on a wall of the temple a mass of light, which appears at first at a very great distance. It is transformed, while unfolding itself, into a visage evidently divine and supernatural, of an aspect severe, but with a touch of sweetness. Following the teachings of a mysterious religion, the Alexandrians honour it as Osiris or Adonis." * From this statement, there can hardly be a doubt that the magical art here employed was not other than that now made use of in the modern phantasmagoria. Such or similar means were used in the very earliest periods for presenting to the view of the living, in the secret Mysteries, those who were dead. We have statements in ancient history referred to the very time of Semiramis, which imply that magic rites were practised for this very purpose; * and as the magic lantern, or something akin to it, was manifestly used in later times for such an end, it is reasonably to conclude that the same means, or similar, were employed in the most ancient times, when the same effects were produced. Now, in the hands of crafty, designing men, this was a powerful means of imposing upon those who were willing to be imposed upon, who were averse to the holy spiritual religion of the living God, and who still hankered after the system that was put down. It was easy for those who controlled the Mysteries, having discovered secrets that were then unknown to the mass of mankind, and which they carefully preserved in their own exclusive keeping, to give them what might seem ocular demonstration, that Tammuz, who had been slain, and for whom such lamentations had been made, was still alive, and encompassed with divine and heavenly glory. From the lips of one so gloriously revealed, or what was practically the same, from the lips of some unseen priest, speaking in his name from behind the scenes, what could be too wonderful or incredible to be believed? Thus the whole system of the secret Mysteries of Babylon was intended to glorify a dead man; and when once the worship of one dead man was established, the worship of many more was sure to follow. This casts light upon the language of the 106th Psalm, where the Lord, upbraiding Israel for their apostacy, says: "They joined themselves to Baalpeor, and ate the sacrifices of the dead." Thus, too, the way was paved for bringing in all the abominations and crimes of which the Mysteries became the scenes; for, to those who liked not to retain God in their knowledge, who preferred some visible object of worship, suited to the sensuous feelings of their carnal minds, nothing could seem a more cogent reason for faith or practice than to hear with their own ears a command given forth amid so glorious a manifestation apparently by the very divinity they adored.
The scheme, thus skilfully formed, took effect. Semiramis gained glory from her dead and deified husband; and in course of time both of them, under the names of Rhea and Nin, or "Goddess-Mother and Son," were worshipped with an enthusiasm that was incredible, and their images were everywhere set up and adored. * Wherever the negro aspect of Nimrod was found an obstacle to his worship, this was very easily obviated. According to the Chaldean doctrine of the transmigration of souls, all that was needful was just to teach that Ninus had reappeared in the person of a posthumous son, of a fair complexion, supernaturally borne by his widowed wife after the father had gone to glory. As the licentious and dissolute life of Semiramis gave her many children, for whom no ostensible father on earth would be alleged, a plea like this would at once sanctify sin, and enable her to meet the feelings of those who were disaffected to the true worship of Jehovah, and yet might have no fancy to bow down before a negro divinity. From the light reflected on Babylon by Egypt, as well as from the form of the extant images of the Babylonian child in the arms of the goddess-mother, we have every reason to believe that this was actually done. In Egypt the fair Horus, the son of the black Osiris, who was the favourite object of worship, in the arms of the goddess Isis, was said to have been miraculously born in consequence of a connection, on the part of that goddess, who Osiris after his death, * and, in point of fact, to have been a new incarnation of that god, to avenge his death on his murderers. It is wonderful to find in what widely-severed countries, and amongst what millions of the human race at this day, who never saw a negro, a negro god is worshipped. But yet, as we shall afterwards see, among the civilised nations of antiquity, Nimrod almost everywhere fell into disrepute, and was deposed from his original pre-eminence, expressly ob deformitatem, * "on account of his ugliness." Even in Babylon itself, the posthumous child, as identified with his father, and inheriting all his father's glory, yet possessing more of his mother's complexion, came to be the favourite type of the Madonna's divine son.
This son, thus worshipped in his mother's arms, was looked upon as invested with all the attributes, and called by almost all the names of the promised Messiah. As Christ, in the Hebrew of the Old Testament, was called Adonai, The Lord, so Tammuz was called Adon or Adonis. Under the name of Mithras, he was worshipped as the "Mediator." * As Mediator and head of the covenant of grace, he was styled Baal-berith, Lord of the Covenant --(Judges viii. 33). In this character he is represented in Persian monuments as seated on the rainbow, the well-known symbol of the covenant. * In India, under the name of Vishnu, the Preserver or Saviour of men, though a god, he was worshipped as the great "Victim-Man," who before the worlds were, because there was nothing else to offer, offered himself as a sacrifice. * The Hindu sacred writings teach that this mysterious offering before all creation is the foundation of all the sacrifices that have ever been offered since. * Do any marvel at such a statement being found in sacred books of a Pagan mythology? Why should they? Since sin entered the world there has been only one way of salvation, and that through the blood of the everlasting covenant--a way that all mankind once knew, from the days of righteous Abel downwards. When Abel, "by faith," offered unto God his more excellent sacrifice than that of Cain, it was his faith "in the blood of the Lamb slain," in the purpose of God "from the foundation of the world," and in due time to be actually offered up on Calvary, that gave all the "excellence" to his offering. If Abel knew of "the blood of the Lamb," why should Hindoos not have known of it? One little word shows that even in Greece the virtue of "the blood of God" had once been known, though that virtue, as exhibited in its poets, was utterly obscured and degraded. That word is Ichor. Every reader of the bards of classic Greece knows that Ichor is the term peculiarly appropriated to the blood of a divinity. Thus Homer refers to it:--
"From the clear vein the immortal Ichor flowed, Such stream as issues from a wounded god, Pure emanation, uncorrupted flood, Unlike our gross, diseased terrestrial blood." *
Now, what is the proper meaning of the term Ichor? In Greek it has no etymological meaning whatever; but, in Chaldee, Ichor signifies "The precious thing." Such a name, applied to the blood of a divinity, could have only one origin. It bears its evidence on the very face of it, as coming from that grand patriarchal tradition, that led Abel to look forward to the "precious blood" of Christ, the most "precious" gift that live Divine could give to a guilty world, and which, while the blood of the only genuine "Victim-Man," is at the same time, in deed and in truth, "The blood of God" (Acts xx. 28). Even in Greece itself, though the doctrine was utterly perverted, it was not entirely lost. It was mingled with falsehood and fable, it was hid from the multitude; but yet, in the secret mystic system it necessarily occupied an important place. As Servius tells us that the grand purpose of the Bacchic orgies "was the purification of souls," * and as in these orgies there was regularly the tearing asunder and the shedding of the blood of an animal, in memory of the shedding of the life's blood of the great divinity commemorated in them, could this symbolical shedding of the blood of that divinity have no bearing on the "purification" from sin, these mystic rites were intended to effect? We have seen that the sufferings of the Babylonian Zoroaster and Belus were expressly represented as voluntary, and as submitted to for the benefit of the world, and that in connection with crushing the great serpent's head, which implied the removal of sin and the curse. If the Grecian Bacchus was just another form of the Babylonian divinity, then his sufferings and blood-shedding must have been represented as having been undergone for the same purpose--viz., for the "purification of souls." From this point of view, let the well-known name of Bacchus in Greece be looked at. The name was Dionysus or Dionusos. What is the meaning of that name? Hitherto it has deified all interpretation. But deal with it as belonging to the language of that land from which the god himself originally came, and the meaning is very plain. D'ion-nuso-s signifies "THE SIN-BEARER," * a name entirely appropriate to the character of him whose sufferings were represented as so mysterious, and who was looked up to as the great "purifier of souls."
Now, this Babylonian God, known in Greece as "The sin-bearer," and in India as the "Victim-Man," among the Buddhists of the East, the original elements of whose system are clearly Babylonian, was commonly addressed as the "Saviour of the world." * It has been all along well enough known that the Greeks occasionally worshipped the supreme god under the title of "Zeus the Saviour;" but this title was thought to have reference only to deliverance in battle, or some such-like temporal deliverance. But when it is known that "Zeus the Saviour" was only a title of Dionysus, * the "sin-bearing Bacchus," his character, as "The Saviour," appears in quite a different light. In Egypt, the Chaldean god was held up as the great object of love adoration, as the god through whom "goodness and truth were revealed to mankind." * He was regarded as the predestined heir of all things; and, on the day of his birth, it was believed that a voice was heard to proclaim, "The Lord of all the earth is born." * In this character he was styled "King of kings, and Lord of lords," it being as a professed representative of this hero-god that the celebrated Sesostris caused this very title to be added to his name on the monuments which he erected to perpetuate the fame of his victories. * Not only was he honoured as the great "World King," he was regarded as Lord of the invisible world, and "Judge of the dead;" and it was taught that, in the world of spirits, all must appear before his dread tribunal, to have their destiny assigned them. * As the true Messiah was prophesied of under the title of the "Man whose name was the branch," he was celebrated not only as the "Branch of Cush," but as the "Branch of God," graciously given to the earth for healing all the ills that flesh is heir to. * He was worshipped in Babylon under the name of Eli-Bar, or "God the Son." Under this very name he is introduced by Berosus, the Chaldean historian, as the second in the list of Babylonian sovereigns. * Under this name he has been found in the sculptures of Nineveh by Layard, the name Bar "the Son," having the sign denoting El or "God" prefixed to it. * Under the same name he has been found by Sir H. Rawlinson, the names "Beltis" and the "Shining Bar" being in immediate juxtaposition. * Under the name of Bar he was worshipped in Egypt in the earliest times, though in later times the god Bar was degraded in the popular Pantheon, to make way for another more popular divinity. * In Pagan Rome itself, as Ovid testifies, he was worshipped under the name of the "Eternal Boy." * Thus daringly and directly was a mere mortal set up in Babylon in opposition to the "Son of the Blessed." 2bab012.htm