Montgomery uses this material to discuss catastrophism as a contrast to modern uniformitarianism in geology, but to those who know their alternative science crazes, Halley’s idea immediate calls to mind the Worlds in Collision (1950) of Immanuel Velikovsky, which similarly postulated that the effects of collisions or near-collisions with massive comets (which he thought later became the planets of the solar system) caused Biblical events like the Flood. Velikovsky, in fact, cited Whiston as a source.
Interested, I wanted to read Halley’s papers, the oldest comet-impact theory know, but this turned out to be a challenge. Halley read the papers in December 1694 but worried that the ecclesiastical authorities would accuse him of blasphemy, so he asked that they not be published. They remained unpublished until 1723 when they appeared in the Society’s journal and were reprinted in a collected volume in 1734. Brief excerpts appeared in John Hutchinson's Sine Principio. In 1809, the papers were abstracted but not reprinted, and in 1872 significant extracts appeared in a mechanical journal during a renewed “Noah’s Comet” debate, but otherwise the papers haven’t been reprinted since 1723 so far as I could determine, excepting a 1960s reprint of the whole run of the journal. Google Books indexed (in both editions) the original papers, but no copy is available as searchable online text, so I’ve gone through and proofed a copy and placed it in my Library. You can read it here.
It continues to amaze me that modern alternative ideas have such long and fascinating pedigrees, often the result of uncritical advocacy of discarded ideas that once served as science before the facts disproved them.