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    September 17, 1885

    “The Empire of Grecia. The Reign of Philip” The Signs of the Times 11, 36, p. 564.
    THE REIGN OF PHILIP

    “And another third kingdom of brass, which shall bear rule over all the earth.” Daniel 2:39, last part.SITI September 17, 1885, page 564.1

    In Daniel 10:20 the angel said, “And now I return to fight with the prince of Persia; and when I am gone forth, lo, the prince of Grecia shall come.” Therefore we know that Grecia was the power that should succeed that of Media and Persia—that Grecia was the “third kingdom of brass” which should “bear rule over all the earth.”SITI September 17, 1885, page 564.2

    B.C. 359, Philip II. succeeded to the kingdom of Macedon. “Macedonia is a part of Greece.”—Strabo, Fragments 10; book 8, chap. 1, sec. 1, par. 1, sec. 3, par. 1. See also “Encyc. Brit.,” article “Greece,” par. 1. “Greece was, at the moment, completely disorganized.” Apart from Macedonia, Greece at that time consisted of nineteen distinct States,—Epirus and Thessaly composed North Greece; Acarnania, Etolia, Locris, Doris, Phocis, Megaris, Bœotia, and Attica, composed Central Greece; and Corinthia, Sicyonia, Achaia, Elis, Messenia, Lagonia, Argolis, and Arcadia, composed the Peloponnesus or Southern Greece; the island of Eubœa, which lay along the eastern coast, formed the nineteenth State,—but taken all together the whole nineteen were only a little larger than the State of West Virginia, they having 25,811 square miles while West Virginia has 23,000. Imagine West Virginia with a coast line as great as that of Greece, divided into nineteen independent States, two of which comprise fully half of the whole area, each one of the nineteen being jealous of all the others, besides being itself separated by factions jealous of each other, with all public spirit gone—imagine such a condition of affairs as this, and you have a picture of Greece at the time that Philip became king of Macedon. See “Encyc. Brit.,” articles “Macedonia Empire” and “Greece;” Rollin, “History of Philip,” sections 1, 2.SITI September 17, 1885, page 564.3

    It is evident that before Greece could do anything at all, of any worth, she must be united. To accomplish this, was the task that Philip had set for himself. As soon, therefore, as Philip had settled the affairs of his own kingdom he set about to bring the States of Greece into subjection to himself.SITI September 17, 1885, page 564.4

    “And now, as a politician and conqueror, he resolves how he may best extend his frontiers, reduce is neighbors, and weaken those whom he is not able to conquer at present; how he may introduce himself into the affairs of Greece, take part in her intestine feuds, make himself its arbiter, join with one side to destroy the other, in order to obtain the empire over all. In the execution of this great design, he spares neither artifices, open force, presents, nor promises. He employs for this purpose negotiations, treaties, and alliances, and each of them singly in such a manner of his design, expediency solely determining him in the choice of measures. We shall always see him acting under this character, which is, preparing to attack the great king of Persia, and endeavoring to become the avenger of Greece, by subverting an empire which before had attempted to subject it, and which had always continued its irreconcilable enemy, either by open invasions or secret intrigues.”—Rollin, Hist. of Philip, sec. 1, par. 21, 22.SITI September 17, 1885, page 564.5

    In 355 B.C., the Sacred War broke out among the States of Greece, and lasted ten years, which gave Philip his desired opportunity to interfere in the internal affairs of Greece. The Sacred War was caused by the Phoceans, who dwelt near Delphi, plowing up certain grounds that had been consecrated to Apollo. When this was done, it was reported to the States-general of Greece as sacrilege. The Phoceans were summoned before the Amphictyonic Council, and after an examination of the whole affair, they were declared guilty of sacrilege, and sentenced to pay a heavy fine. They refused to submit, and took up arms. The Council met again and declared war on the Phoceans, and then the trouble began. Nearly all Greece took part in the quarrel, some of the States taking sides in favor of the god, others joining the Phoceans.SITI September 17, 1885, page 564.6

    “In this general movement of the Greeks... Philip thought it most consistent with his interest to remain neuter.... He was also well pleased to see both parties weaken and consume each other, as he should thereby be enabled to fall upon them afterwards with greater case and advantage.”—Id., sec. 2, par. 7.SITI September 17, 1885, page 564.7

    However, in 353 B.C. Philip interfered so far as to join Thessaly to his kingdom, and the Thessalion cavalry to his standard, and started to invade Phocis, but the Athenians seized Thermopyle, and he was obliged to return to Macedonia for a season. At last the Thebans grew tired of the Sacred War and sought the alliance of Philip. This was just what Philip was waiting for, and he therefore “declared at once in their favor.”SITI September 17, 1885, page 564.8

    “There was nothing Philip had more at heart than to possess himself of Thermopyle, as it opened to him a passage into Greece; to appropriate to himself all the honor of the Sacred War, as if he had been the principal in that affair; and to preside in the Pythian games. He was desirous of aiding the Thebans, and by their means to possess himself of Phocis; but then, in order to put this doubt design into execution, it was necessary for him to keep it secret from the Athenians, who had actually declared war against Thebes, and who for many years had been in alliance with the Phoeeans. His business, therefore, was to place other objects in their view; and on this occasion the politics of Philip succeeded to a wonder.”—Id., sec. 4, par. 2.SITI September 17, 1885, page 564.9

    Just at this juncture, the Athenians also grew tired of the war, and sent two commissioners to Philip to sound him in regard to his helping to bring about a peace. He of course answered very favorably. Thereupon Athens sent ten ambassadors to inquire fully about all points in regard to the important question. The ten returned with a very favorable report indeed. Then these ten ambassadors were immediately sent back to Philip, “with full powers to conclude a peace and ratify it by oaths.” After considerable delay on the part of the ambassadors, and more on the part of Philip, with his troops advancing all the time, peace was ratified, but Philip refused to include the Phoeeans. When the embassy returned to Athens a controversy arose there whether Philip was to be trusted or not, and while they were contending over that question, Philip decided it by taking possession of Thermopyle, “which opened to him the gates, and put into his hands the keys of Greece,” invaded Phocis, the Phoeeans sued for peace, and yielded themselves to Philip’s mercy, and so ended the Sacred War, with Philip in possession of the key of Greece.SITI September 17, 1885, page 564.10

    Philip immediately assembled the Amphictyonic Council to pass judgment on the Phoeeans. The council decreed that all the cities of Phocis should be destroyed; that they should have no towns of more than sixty houses each; that such towns should be a certain distance apart; that none should enjoy any possessions except upon the payment of an annual tribute; and that the Phoeean seat in the council was forfeited. Then Philip demanded that the council give him the vacant seat, which as a matter of course was done, and so Philip of Macedon became a member of the general council of the States of Greece. Next the obsequious council gave him, in conjunction with the Bœatians and Thessalions, the superintendence of the Pythian games. Thus he had obtained all his wish, after, which he returned to Macedon, but still holding possession of Thermopyle.SITI September 17, 1885, page 564.11

    The next seven years Philip spent in wars in Illyria, Thrace, and Scythia, and in an unsuccessful siege of Byzantium (Constantinople). In 338 B.C., another trouble, similar to that which caused the Sacred War, arose among the Locrians. The question came before the Amphictyonic Council. Philip had bribed the crators of the Council, and they persuaded the deputies that it were much better to elect Philip generalissimo of all Greece, than to assess their respective States for the means by which to hire soldiers.SITI September 17, 1885, page 564.12

    Accordingly, “By a public decree, ‘ambassadors were sent to Philip of Macedon, who, in the name of Apollo and the Amphictyons, implore his assistance, beseech him not to neglect the cause of that god which the impious Amphissians make their sport; and notify him, that for this purpose all the Greeks, associated in the council of the Amphictyons, elect him for their general, with full power to act as he shall think proper.’ This was the honor to which Philip had long aspired, the aim of all his views, and the end of all the engines he had set at work till that time. He therefore did not lose a moment but immediately assembled his forces ... and possessed himself of Elatea, the greatest city in Phocis.”—Id., sec. 6, par. 5, 6.SITI September 17, 1885, page 564.13

    Athens arose in arms, and Demosthenes, in an oratorical contest with Python, overwhelmed him, and carried the Thebans with him to an alliance with Athens against Philip. The battle of Cheronea followed quickly. Philip was victorious, and Greece was his. The battle of Cheronea was the first in which Alexander ever fought as a commander. He was only eighteen, yet he fully displayed the intrepid valor that characterized him in after years. He broke and entirely routed the veteran “sacred battalion,” the flower of the Theban army.SITI September 17, 1885, page 564.14

    “Philip used his victory moderately, for he wished to leave Greece quiet behind him when he crossed into Asia to assail the great king [of Persia].”—Encyc. Brit., article Macedonia Empire, par. 3. “Macedon at that time [the battle of Cheronea], with no more than 30,000 soldiers, gained a point which Persia, with millions of men, had attempted unsuccessfully at Platea, at Salamis, and at Marathon. Philip, in the first years of his reign, had repulsed, divided, and disarmed his enemies. In the succeeding ones, he had subjected, by artifice or force, the most powerful States of Greece, and had made himself its arbiter; but now he prepares to revenge the injuries which Greece had received from the Barbarians, and meditates no less a design than the destruction of their empire [the Persian Empire]. The greatest advantage he gained by his last victory (and this was the object he long had in view, and never lost sight of) was to get himself appointed, in the assembly of the Greeks, their generalissimo against the Persians. In this quality he made preparations to invade that mighty empire. He nominated, as leaders of part of his forces, Attalus and Parmenio, two of his captains, on whose valor and wisdom he chiefly replied, and made them set out for Asia Minor.”—Rollin, Hist. of Philip, sec. 7, par. 1.SITI September 17, 1885, page 564.15

    A. T. J.

    (To be continued.)

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