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ters, to hold a truth, and at the same per se sinful;" and surely he would time to teach a countervailing error, consider a measure far more effecmust be a sin—the sin of hypocrisy, tually teaching vital error-doctrine or of indifference, or of unwise and differing vitally from his own--to be unjustifiable compromise. Nor does sinful per se. His mind therefore it appear that the case is altered if the has taken refuge, where only it had teaching is by means of an interme- the semblance of escape, in the essendiate person. In this case, if in any, tial identity of the great substance of qui facit per alteram facit per se. It Romish and Reformation teaching is impossible to separate the prime in the comforting and quieting idea moving agent from the moral result. “ that we hold many doctrines An erroneous teaching goes forth to in common with our Roman Catholic deceive mankind and defeat God's brethren.” And here again, on the gracious purpose, which would not justificative ground of the Bishop's but for my instrumentality; a false original position, we once more join teacher of delusion, opposed to reve- issue with him. Could we agree with lation, acquires through my act him, we would go further than he increased facilities for practising his does; but believing the Romish sysnefarious calling ; error is declared, tem to be “ an apostacy,” a falling truth is repressed, and souls are per away from the truth, “the believing verted. It is inconceivable to a well of," and the propagation of, “a lie” in halanced mind that any circumstances the cause of God: we cannot cherish could induce a clear-sighted believer a charity so virtually licentious; we of a revealed truth to be thus in any would rather maintain that, with respect way, however remotely, the propagator to every truth which we hold, the parof an opposing or adulterating error. allel dogma in the Romish scheme is Men may say, this is very rigid and not the truth-is not a truth-but is illiberal; but look at the elements un- a perversion, or a contradiction, or a der consideration, and their awful pollution, or an overlaying of the sanction. Give them their real weight; truth-so that the truth is not there. and it will surely be concluded that The union of moral truth and error is good men ought to come up to this like an union of two simple substanstandard; and that if they do not, it is ces in nature by chemical affinity. worth while enquiring what defective The sulphur combines with the iron, and perverting agencyis at work, which and makes sulphuret of iron, another can lead men with comparative indif- substance of widely different qualities, ference to circulate on the one hand utterly different from the nature of the justification of the soul by faith iron, and unfit for the purposes to alone, and on the other its justifica which iron is applied; and the iron tion by human merit. We know will not be iron again till the sulphur there are many ways of mystifying a has been thoroughly abstracted. question of this sort, and letting the We agree, then, here, in the main, inconsistency pass under the cloud of with our correspondent, while we sophistication; but the point is, what venture, respectfully, to differ from does a truly honest, straightforward the mitre. And we conceive, in order mind think of it-one who would not to fix our relative position towards lightly lend himself to his own decep Rome, and our duty towards God and tion ?
our fellow-creatures in this awfully It is quite evident that the Bishop important matter, we must permit of Worcester has felt the practical ourselves to be brought up by right difficulty, as it is here put, to be a great reason and the paramount authority of one; because he has felt that as long revelation to this distinct position :as he were compelled to view the viz. we hold no truth in common with teaching of Rome and the Reforma the Church of Rome. She holds no tion as essentially opposed to each truth; because every truth which she other, he could not take the position seems to hold is nullified and perhe has done. “ Nothing," he says, verted, inasmuch as it is essentially “could induce me to vote forameasure combined with a fatal error. A man
may say with me, that twice two are four; we seem to agree; but if he hold also, that three and two are four, then his notion of the number four differs essentially from mine. There is an element in his notion of four which is at variance with mine-we do not holdour arithmeticaltables in common. In all the practical results of calculation we shall differ; I can have no safe or sound dealings with him till he shakes off the delusion that the elements of five are only equivalent to four. Then, only, will he hold the truth as to four: then, only, shall we be agreed ; and hold the multiplication table in common.
This is an illustration, not an argument; but it carries the principle; and will materially assist the developement of our objection to the Bishop's vindication of his vote for the education of Romish priests, on the ground that they and we hold and teach many truths in common. There is not a tenet of Christianity professed to be held by the Romanist, that is not so essentially combined with an unscriptural notion as to make it not the averment which it professes to be, but a widely different and dangerous one; so that the notion held by him is not held in common with us, but is exclusively and peculiarly his own. The Bishop says, “ we both believe in God the Father ;” but be it remembered, that we do not believe in a mere name, but in a revealed character, and if the general views entertained of that character by Romanists are essentially inconsistent with the sublime notion of revelation, if their God and Father is a being who can sanction an adoration of demons and of images, and contentedly divide the honours of worship with creatures and fig. ments, if He is not in their estimation the "jealous God” of the decalogue, then, even on the subject of this elementary truth, we have no doctrine in common. Their rock is not as our rock, themselves being judges. In the same way the professed tenets of a Trinity in Únity is vitiated by the assumption of a woman to the throne of divine honours. The introduction of the genetrix Dei as a prominent object of worship - introduces a
fourth element into the great mystery of the Godhead; and the habit of the Popish mind toward the object of worship, differs essentially from that of the Protestant. The cherubic emblem of Ezekiel presents to the Protestant an adequate intimation of the Triune God manifested through the incarnation ; but it would not fully meet the Romanist's practical notions. He would be conscious of defects. He would be feeling after some presentation of the additional idea of the “Queen of Heaven,” who fills so large a portion of his confidence and his devotions. We hold not the same notion of a Trinity with those who recognize a fourth element of Divine power and glory, however casuistically modified and subordinated. It is impracticable in the scope of these pages to follow out this idea in detail. But it might be very clearly shown, that the doctrine of a gracious salvation through an atonement, is essentially vitiated by the recognized means of fastings, penances, and payments, on the part of the congregation, and of indulgences, dispensations, and pardons, on the part of the priest; that the true doctrine of mediation is lost in the second-class mediation of hosts of canonized intercessors; that the one propitiation, by a sacrifice once offered, is merged and buried in the daily sacrifice of a daily created Christ, for the quick and dead; that the belief of Christ's appointment of two sacraments is swamped in the assertion that he appointed seven; that the divine inspiration of canonical Scripture cannot be held as we hold it, when the same inspiration is claimed for other writings containing palpable error; and that a system of revealed truth is diluted and lost when held together with an undefined and yet undeveloped depositum somewhere or other in the heart of the clergy, an “unwritten law in the Church,” as Dr. Phillimore calls it, which may be brought out piecemeal as convenience serves.
Now we submit this view of Romish error most seriously to the consideration of the Bishop, and all others who wish to entertain largely charitable views of the abettors of the
Romish system; for we believe this to be the gravamen of their sin, that they have poisoned the stream at the fountain. They seem to hold Scriptural truths. They hold none. The voice is Jacob's voice, but the hands are the hands of Esau. They sign, swear to, and repeat the Triune Creed, but they also sign, swear to, and repeat twelve other articles, which are taken along with it, as of equal authority with the previous articles, and essentially modifying them, as truly and really as a will with a codicil to it, which can only be admitted to make such bequests as flow out of the fair interpretation both of the previous and the subsequent documents. Then, as it is evident that every statement of the previous part of the creed is modified, altered, and vitiated by the subsequent statements, it must be admitted, that we hold none of the previous truth in common with the Romanists; because they do not hold them at all as they stand, but as they are modified, coloured, and transformed by that which follows.
Let this view be entertained, and we see not how an accurate mind, thinking rightly over the whole matter, can properly entertain any other, and then, surely, all charity towards the Romish system must cease. If we are satisfied that the combined result of professed Scriptural truth held with and modified by adulterating error, is not truth but falsehood; then it is quite evident, that to further the promulgation of that falsehood is sinful; and that it is sinful, in the very worst form of such sin, to support a scheme for training more effectually the teachers of the system. It is applying fresh power at the centre of the system. It is strengthening and quickening the energies of the heart.
It behoves us, however, to state, before we altogether turn away from this very momentous subject, that we do not deny, that through the extraordinary mercy of God, men may catch at and lay hold, even in the precincts of the Romish community, and under the upas tree of Trentine teaching, of some portions of saving truth. The alembic of their mind may,
through mercy, eliminate the associated poison. Pascal is an instance of this, but this does not at all affect the systematic teaching. “There is death in the pot.” The mixture must be condemned as poison; and no mitigated notion of the virus must be entertained, because it is just possible that some minds are so constituted as to separate that which is healthy from that which is deleterious. Men may in this way be saved within the system, but the mixture is poisonous, and they who put forth a hand to aid it, are participators in the administration of death.
And thus we are brought, finally, to the Bishop's posing question, which, certainly to a Bishop, as a legislator for a population of mixed creeds, is one which must call up most serious, extensive, and not easily answered enquiries. “It is,” he says, “a question between teaching Christianity as professed by Roman Catholics, and teaching no religion at all.” We have no wish to cut a knot, rudely and summarily, which we cannot untie, but we do deliberately, in our position, accept the latter horn of the dilemma. The Romish system is not a Christianity, but an " apostacy" from it, and we say at once, that the responsibility attached to religious teaching is so awful, and the guilt of teaching error so great, that it is clearly the duty of believers of the truth, to teach nothing, if they may not teach truth. There is no other way of keeping their hands clean. There is no other way of using profitably the actual state of things to further the cause of truth. Mere statesmen may do what they like, and Christian men and Christian Bishops may go the length of tolerating all erroneous religious opinions, and refusing to mulct men in any way in their civil privileges on that account. But a stand must be made on the extreme verge of truth. We cannot go further. We cannot deceive men's souls and keep them in error by a compromise. Their interest is directly concerned in the manifest horror with which Protestants should shrink from any participation in the teaching of idolatrous delusion. Let
men carry out their view one step further, and look again :-Mahommedanism is a modification of Christianity--would they teach that? And in what is the false prophet at Rome less criminal than he of Mecca? Vital disease calls for desperate remedy. It is no concern of the Christian what religion a people will have, if they will not receive the truth. Let the way be unrestrained for them to maintain their own superstitions. Let the true Church provide her agents to offer the truth to their attention, and then with the Gospel standard in our hand, we may say, safely and wisely, “ we demur to any participation whatever in the teaching a compound of truth and error.” While the means of teaching truth are provided for them, we say fear lessly, it is better for the people, as yet, to be anything at all, than that we should neutralize the testimony to saving truth, and mystify the narrow
path of light that leads to heaven, by taking part in teaching them to be Roman Catholics.
With such views we must, of course, deeply regret, not only the direct vote of Dr. Pepys for the Maynooth measure, but the general want of bold, prominent, uncompromising protestation by the Right Reverend the Bench against it. “ It was as if a standard bearer fainted.” We cannot forget that there was an English Archbishop, in Reformation times, who was once led to put his hand to a measure of conciliatory compromise with Rome; but when the day of calm and serious investigation came to him, on the verge of eternity, and he read alike the mercy, the integrity, and the Scriptural truth of the Church of Rome, by the blazing faggot of his martyrdom, he thrust that hand first into the fire, saying-"Oh! this unworthy hand !"
FROM THE GERMAN OF RUCKERT.
(For the Christian Guardian.)
The sky is a huge letter, on a ground
A VISIT TO THE UNION HOUSE.
(For the Christian Guardian.) We readily insert the following letter, flower-pots were bright red, which not because we have changed our cast quite a sunny glow over the opinion of the Poor Laws, which we little garden. We were first shown have from the very first reprobated into the governor's room; and upon as cruel, unchristian, and unconsti- our observing to him how much we tutional, but because we are glad to had been struck with the garden, he be able to exhibit a sperimen, for the replied, it gives the inmates a taste encouragement of others, of what for cultivating their little gardens at may be done under humane and home; and when they see how much Christian direction. We know there can be done in small space, it encouare exceptions to the general rule, rages them to try to raise a few flowand we could name some (one, at ers and vegetables for themselves, least,) ourselves. But they are not and the colour of the flower-pots is to such as the existing laws, in their show them how much brighter and strict letter, admit. We believe that more cheerful cleanliness is, than the where the Poor Law system works dirty and disorderly way they are satisfactorily, it is only by a deter- usually accustomed to at home. We mined resistance on the part of hu- then enquired about separating the mane guardians to its objectionable husbands and wives. It appeared to provisions. Happily, the Govern- us hard, that a couple, after having ment are yielding to the pressure of lived the best part of their lives toirresistible influence, and the vaunt gether, should in old age be deprived of infallibility, which has so often of that comfort. He laughed, and and so ridiculously issued from So said, “Oh, I assure you that is not merset House, is heard no more. the case. The law provides out of There is scarcely an objectionable the house for any respectable couple feature in the Poor Laws which the who bear a good character. I have Home Secretary is not gradually, been here ten years, and have not though we fear reluctantly, compelled yet met with an instance where there to amend; so that we live in hope to was the smallest desire expressed to see the day when our nation will be together; on the contrary, the recease to treat poverty as a crime, and, quest generally is, Pray never let me in the haste to check the disorderly, see my wife again, or, I trust I shall oppress the virtuous.
be kept from my husband; miscon
duct in one or both being the usual “We had so constantly heard com- cause of their state of destitution. plaints from the poor in every town we Drinking is the scourge of the lower visited, of the cruelty of the laws re- orders; and really I think, if anyspecting the Union Houses, and ex- thing, the women are worse in this pressed the horror of being obliged to respect than the men. They have no become their inmates, that we wish- domestic comforts to lose; strife and ed to see one and judge for our contention, poverty, and every evil selves of the truth of these statements: which sin brings with it, is all they and being at Cheltenham for a short have known at home.' We said we time, we took the opportunity of going thought they must be very comfortoverthe Union House there, andour vi- able in such an establishment. He sit afforded us very great pleasure. We answered, 'Yes, to the aged, the sick, were struck, on entering the garden, and the children, we do endeavour to with the air of cheerfulness and the give every possible comfort; their attention to taste in the distribution circumstances require it: but to the of the flowers; and there was evi- strong and healthy, we should be dently the desire to render every guilty of a sin, to encourage them in thing both useful and agreeable—a idleness. Man must gain his bread thing too often lost sight of. The by the sweat of his brow, and there