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Full text of "Methodist pamphlets for the people"

METHODIST 



Q* 



amulets fax tju fjetfple* 



VOLUME THIRD. 



EDITED BY THOMAS 0. SUMMERS, D.D. 



INasIjmUe, Cenn.: 

PUBLISHED BY E. STEVENSON & F. A. OWEN, AGENTS, 

FOR THE METHODIST EPISCOPAL CHURCH, SOUTH. 

185 7. 



Entered, according to Act of Congress, in the year 1857, by 

E. STEVENSON & F. A. OWEN, Agents, 

In the Office of the Clerk of the District Court for the Middle District of Tennessee. 



STEREOTYPED AND PRINTED BY A. A. STITT, 
SOUTHERN METHODIST PUBLISHING HOUSE, NASHVILLE, TI'N'N. 



donhttts. 



No. 

Marks of a true Church 25 

The Supremacy of the Pope without Foundation in the 

Word of God 26 

The Romish Doctrine of Penance, Absolution, and Indulg- 
ences 27 

The Romish Doctrine of Transubstantiation contrary to 

the Senses, to Reason, and to Holy Scripture 28 

Idolatry of the Church of Rome 29 

Immaculate Conception of Mary 30 

The Worship of Mary ~ 31 

The Portrait of Mary in Heaven. From the French of 

N. Roussel 32 

The Virgin and the Saints. From the French of N. Roussel. 33 

"The Most Holy Bambino" 34 

Jesus and Jesuits. From the French of N. Roussel 35 

The Christian Catholic. From the French of N. Roussel. 36 

Popery injurious to Man 37 

Intolerant and persecuting Spirit of Popery 38 

Protestant Christianity and Romanism contrasted, in re- 
spect to their Agreement with Scripture 39 

The History of Mary, an Irish Peasant 40 

The Dying Catholic Girl.. 41 

The Roman Catholic Schoolmaster 42 

The Sick Man and the Priest 43 

Why does your Priest forbid You to read the Bible? From 

the French of N. Roussel 44 

The History of a Piece of Wood. From the French of N. 

Roussel 45 

The Scapular 46 

The Genius of Popery exemplified 47 

Giant Pope 48 

(iii) 



defend |t0t*. 



The following essays, as their name indicates, were origin- 
ally issued in separate pamphlets. They are called Methodist 
Pamphlets because they belong to a series bearing that gene- 
ral title, though it is believed they contain nothing to which 
Protestants of all the leading orthodox communions will not 
subscribe. They are written with no ordinary ability, being 
for the most part the productions of some of the best writers 
of the present age. They will prove a valuable vade mecum 
to any one who may be called to defend the faith once deli- 
vered unto the saints against the novelties of the Man of Sin, 
It might be difficult to find elsewhere, in so small a compass, 
exposures of the corruptions of Popery so thorough and varied, 
and refutations of them so elaborate and yet popular, as will 
be found in these admirable papers. The favor with which 
they have been received in their original form, encourages the 
hope that their appearance in a volume will meet with general 
approval, and that their career of usefulness will be thereby 
greatly extended — which, it need scarcely be added, will be 
deemed an ample compensation for the labor expended in 
procuring and revising them by 

&\\z (EMtor. 

Nashville, Tenn., Jan. 1, 1857. 



PAMPHLETS FOR THE PEOPLE. 



No. 25. 



MARKS OF A TRUE CHURCH. 



There are four marks of a true Church which Rome claims 
as her own : I. Unity ; II. Sanctity ; III. Catholicity ; and 
IV Apostolicity. 

I. We are told, by one of her recognized writers, "that she 
has always been one, by all her members professing one faith, 
in one communion, under one chief pastor succeeding St. 
Peter, to whose charge Christ committed the care of his whole 
flock. "* Let us examine this statement. 

It is said, in the first place, that all her members are one, 
and that they all profess one faith. Now let it be remem- 
bered, that the mere fact of all the members of a particular 
communion professing and receiving one faith, or adopting 
one set of religious opinions, by no means proves that this 
body is the one Church of Christ. There is unity amongst 
the followers of the fanatical Swedenborg, and amongst the 
disciples of Joseph Smith, the Mormonite impostor; and the 
votaries of Joanna Southcote, in her day, were agreed as to 
the truth of her statements, and the Divine authority of her 
claims. So has it been with nearly every sect that has ever 
sprung up. The leader of each has emphatically said, " I 
am the man : the true gospel has never been preached till 
now : I come to set up the one standard, and to rally all men 
beneath its folds/' Nay, if you go to heathen nations, the 
followers of Confucius, the votaries of the Grand Lama of 
Thibet, the worshippers of Vishnu and Juggernaut, will 
separately claim for themselves the possession of the one 
true faith. The same is true also of the multitudes, in the 
east of Europe, and on the borders of Asia, and on the 

* Gother's "Papist Represented and Misrepresented." 
1* 



■II) 

C((l 



2 MARKS OF A TRUE CHURCH. 

northern coasts of Africa, who, at the rising and setting of 
the sun, turn their faces towards Mecca, and cry, " God ia 
God : there is one God, and Mohammed is his prophet." 
Mere unity of faith, therefore, is not a mark of a true Church. 
There may be unity in the belief of falsehood, as well as 
unity in the recognition of truth. 

In the second place, it is said by Romanists, that their 
unity of faith consists in this : " that it is professed and held 

nder one chief pastor, to whose charge Christ committed the 
e of the whole flock." But the alleged supremacy of 
Peter, and the transmission to the bishops of Rome by him 
of the office and authority of chief pastor over the Church, 
has no foundation in the word of God. It is opposed alike 
to the prerogatives of the Lord Jesus, the only King and 
Head of the Church, to the facts of history, and to the 
testimony of the early fathers. The apostle Peter never 
assumed superiority over his fellows, nor did they ever yield 
it to him. The power of "the keys," bestowed upon him, 
was equally imparted to all the apostles :* Christ himself re- 
buked all pretensions to superiority, and declared, " He that 
is greatest among you shall be your servant/' Matt, xxiii. 8- 
11. When the apostles and elders met to consult concern- 
ing the admission of the Gentiles, (as we find in Acts xv.,) 
Peter only gave his advice as an individual member of the 
assembly; and James, not Peter, suggested the line of con- 
duct which was unanimously adopted. f At Antioch, Paul 
" withstood Peter to the face, because he was to be blamed," 
Gal. ii. 11-14. Elsewhere Paul declares that he "was not 
a whit behind the very chiefest apostles," 2 Cor. xi. 5. When 

I'ct.er, in Ids old age, wrote his epistles to the churches, he 
assumed no lordship over God's heritage, that is, the Church, 
but expressly condemned it, 1 Peter v. 3. He addressed 
the ministers of the gospel as an apostle and an elder, 
(avfj,TTpeo(ivTepog, a co-prcsbyter.) As an apostle he could 
have no successors, because his commission was temporary • 
it was received moreover from Christ himself, was accom- 



^* ^ompare Matt. xvi. 19, with Matt, xviii. 18, and John xx. 21, 

f "Wherefore my sentence is," etc. (Acts xv. 19.) Could J:uii<>« 
have spoken thus, if Peter were the divinely appointed prince of the 
npostles und supreme head of the Church? 



MARKS OF A TRUE CHURCH. 6 

panied with miraculous gifts, and was wide as the world ; and 
in the office of presbyter, all the ministers of Jesus Christ, 
the ordinary pastors of the Church, are his true and his only 
successors. Peter, moreover, was not the founder of the 
Church at Rome. If he was ever at Rome at all, it is quite 
clear that the Christian Church there existed before his comins: ; 
and history gives no support whatever to the claim that he 
was the first bishop of Rome. Therefore the first link is 
wanting to this supposed claim of unity. The plea is this : 
Peter was the first pope : all the bishops of Rome were popes 
after him; and he conveyed to them the title, office, and au- 
thority of universal pastor. This, we repeat, is utterly re- 
pudiated by the plain facts of history. For more than 300 
years the claim of supremacy by the bishop of Rome was 
never heard of; and it was not till the year 606, (when the 
"Antichrist," as Gregory the G-reat denounced him by anti- 
cipation, was set up,) that the Emperor Phocas, a bloody 
tyrant, placed the Bishop of Rome in his position of unscrip- 
tural authority, and gave him for the first time the title of 
" Universal Bishop." 

Now, it may naturally be asked, Why is the Church of 
Rome so eager to appropriate to herself the mark of visible 
unity ? Why does she insist upon it as essential to the very 
essence of a Church ? Why does she constantly quote Christ's 
expressions, " one fold, one shepherd," and Paul's words, 
" There is one body, and one Spirit, even as ye are called in 
one hope of your calling : one Lord, one faith, one baptism," 
and then quietly take it for granted that this unity of the 
Church is realized in herself ? This is done, in order that 
she may be able to place Protestants without the true fold, 
beyond the pale of the Church of Christ, and that she may 
taunt them with what she calls their " horrible divisions." 
On this point we crave especial attention to the following 
observations. 

In the first place, the existence of divisions is by no means 
necessarily a proof that a Church is not a true Church of 
Christ. In the Church at Corinth, even in apostolic times, 
" Every one said, I am of Paul ; and I of Apollos ; and I 
of Cephas ; and I of Christ." But while this spirit of 
u schism in the body" was a grievous sin, which called for 
rebuke and censure, yet still the apostle Paul did not un- 



•1 MARKS OF A TRUE CHURCH. 

church the believers at Corinth : he addressed them as 
"sanctified in Christ/' "called to be saints," and invoked 
upon them " grace, mercy, and peace from God our Father 
and Jesus Christ our Lord." It was this argument, drawn 
from the apparent divisions among the early Christians, which 
pagan writers used against Christianity, in order to prove that 
it was not from God. " What a shame !" says Matthew 
Poole (in his "Dialogue between a Romish Priest and an 
English Protestant/') "is it, that you are forced to defend 
your cause with such weapons as those used by the pagans, 
and wrested out of their hands by the ancient fathers !" 

But, in the second place, we hold that the boasted unity 
of the Romish Church is not the result of intelligent scrip- 
tural conviction, but of blind, unreasoning credulity. Wher- 
ever there is a profession of faith in any system, and submis- 
sion to its requirements, by those who have never examined its 
claims by the investigation of intellect, nor tested its assumed 
authority by an appeal to the word of God — wherever there 
is a spirit of wholesale and negligent acquiescence in the 
dicta of a so-called "infallible Church/' while those that re- 
ceive these dicta "neither know what they say, nor whereof 
they affirm ; " while they tell us " we believe/' but are totally 
unable to " give a reason for the hope that is in them/' — then, 
instead of dignifying such a system with the name of unity 
of sentiment, let us rather give to it the true title of a uni- 
formity of ignorance. We do affirm, with regard to the mass 
of the Roman Catholic laity, that, by the force of those pre- 
judices which have been instilled into their minds from 
childhood against Protestants — by the shameful misrepresent- 
ation of the Reformation and its doctrines, of which their 
accredited writers have been guilty — by the denunciations 
which they have heard so frequently thundered forth against 
the exercise of reason and private judgment — and, above all, 
by the jealous exclusion from their hands of the word of the 
living God, "the entrance" of which "givcth light," — it is 
come to pass, that they take on trust every dogma which their 
priests assure them to be the truth of God. There is, there- 
tore, no agreement of opinion among Romanists, except that 
which (as Lord Raeon powerfully expresses it) is grounded on 
implicit ignorance, " just as all colors agree in the dark." j\ 
wonder, therefore, that a Romish bishop (Dr. Doyle) com- 



MARKS OF A TRUE CHURCH. D 

mended the Irish peasant who, instead of polluting his hands 
by touching a Bible, seized it with the tongs and thrust it 
into the fire. Rome extorts implicit faith from her votaries, 
and declares that those who never doubt are alone the true 
sons of the Church. No wonder, therefore, that she boasts 
of her unity. We have an illustration of this kind of unity 
in the well-known anecdote of a poor ignorant collier, who, 
when asked what he believed, answered, " I believe what the 
Church believes." "What then," it was again asked, "does 
the Church believe?" He replied at once, "The Church 
believes what I believe." But in order, if possible, to bring 
him to something more explicit, he was once more interro- 
gated, " Tell me, I pray you, what it is you and the Church 
believe?" The only answer given to the question, and that 
could be given by this man, was this : " Why, sir, I and the 
Church believe the same thing !" 

But, in the third place, when Protestants are taunted with 
their divisions, we both deny and retort the charge. 

1st. We deny the charge : it is not substantially true. We 
are aware that the " Variations of Protestantism" form the 
subject of a standard work among Roman Catholics, written 
by Bossuet, a bishop of the Romish Church in France, who, 
with great ingenuity, but without success, endeavored to con- 
vict the reformed Churches of unnumbered variations. But 
the truth is that the Protestant Reformers disagreed in a few 
unimportant points only; and their disagreement was rather 
in matters of discipline, than of faith or morality. A work, 
which was first published in Latin, at Geneva, in the year 
1581, contains "The harmony of the confession of faith of 
the Christian reformed Churches which purely profess the 
holy doctrines of the gospel, in the chief kingdoms, nations, 
and provinces of Europe."* There are twelve separate con- 
fessions : these express the opinion of a vast population ; and 
if any evidence were wanting to prove that the Reformation 
was indeed the work of G-od, and that, in the fundamental 
truths of the gospel, the noble-hearted men of the sixteenth 
century were perfectly joined together in the same mind and 
in the same judgment, we have that evidence here. With 

" x " This work was translated into English by the Rev. Peter Hallj 
A.M., and is of the utmost value in the present day. 
1* 



6 MARKS OF A TKUE CHURCH. 

regard to the reformers of England and Scotland, it is well 
known that they were in constant and affectionate intercourse 
with each other, as well as with those of the continent of 
Europe. 

In the year 1529, a friendly conference met at Marburg, 
between Luther and Melancthon on the one side, and Zuinglius 
and (Ev,uiampadius on the other. The result was an agree- 
ment in thirteen articles, embracing the most important points. 
The 14th article declared, that while the German and Swiss 
reformers could not come to one mind as to the nature of 
Christ's presence in the eucharist, they would nevertheless 
maintain brotherly love toward one another. Melancthon, at 
the same time, in a letter to the Waldenses, says, "As we 
agree respecting the chief articles of Christian doctrine, let 
us embrace each other with mutual love. Nor ought," he 
adds, " dissimilitude of rites and ceremonies to disunite our 
affections."* Calvin, the great Genevan reformer, wrote to 
Cranmer, expressing his " earnest desire that the most catholic 
union should subsist among the Churches of the Reformation 
on scriptural principles, notwithstanding the diversity which 
prevailed on subordinate points. "f Moreover, when we ap- 
peal, not merely to the times of the Reformation, but to apos- 
tolic times, while there was " one body," and one " household 
of faith," the practice of the primitive Churches, as well as 
the apostolic directions to them, clearly indicate that a rigid 
uniformity was never recognized nor enforced. The Jewish 
believers in the Church who observed circumcision, the Gen- 
tile disciples who rejected it; the man who ate meat which 
had been sold for sacrifices, and he that refused to do so, were 
all commanded to receive one another not to doubtful disputa- 
tions, but to the glory of God. (Rom. xiv. L) And so, "In 
the first and second century," (says Lor^ King, whose ad- 
mirable and unanswerable work, "An Inquiry into the 
Primitive Church," is of itself sufficient to put to shame all 
the modern pretensions, both of the Tractarians and the Ro- 
manists,) " the unity of the Church consisted not in a con- 
formity of rites and customs, for each particular Church was 
permitted to follow its own proper usages : no Church was 
permitted to intrude upon the rights of another, but every one 

* Syntagma Confess. f Calvin, Ep. 164. 



MARKS OF A TRUE CHURCH. 7 

followed its own peculiar customs." We tell Romanists, 
therefore, that they, and not we, have been guilty of rending 
the seamless garment of Christ. It was Victor, a bishop of 
Rome at the end of the second century, who was the first that 
endeavored to enforce uniformity of rites and ceremonies on 
the Christians of the east and west. When these refused, he 
fulminated an edict of excommunication, and that was the 
first thunder that ever rolled from the Vatican. The Reforma- 
tion, which they call " the grand schism," arose from the 
accumulated corruptions and insufferable tyranny of the 
Church of Rome. It was but a return to the unity of primi- 
tive faith : it was but a reassertion, against an enforced uni- 
formity, of the liberty wherewith Christ makes his people 
free. 

Lastly, we meet the charge of divisions among Protestants 
by asserting that Rome's boasted unity is a fiction, not a reality. 
Bishop Hall, in his " Serious Dissuasive from Popery," reckons 
up, under the title of " The Peace of Rome," from the works 
of two Popish writers, Bellarmine and Navarrus, proofs of the 
existence of three hundred controversies among Papists them- 
selves on important points of faith and practice. What schisms, 
for instance, have there been in the Church of Rome on the 
subject of infallibility! Some have claimed this infallibility 
for the pope, others for a general council, and others limit 
the prerogative to a pope and general council conjointly. The 
Romish Church has been divided, again, into predestinarians 
and advocates of free will. There have been differences and 
controversies on the question of penance and exclusive salva- 
tion. It has been conclusively established that Romanists 
have differed in the interpretation of Scripture, and the dogmas 
of religion, as widely as any Protestants ; and that Doctors, 
Pontiffs, and Synods, have maintained the most jarring state- 
ments, and, in consequence, exchanged reciprocal anathemas.* 

Then as to the charge against Protestantism, of fostering 
fanaticism, and leading to a multitude of sects, we are ready 
to prove that within the bosom of the Romish Church have 
sprung up — ay, and have been fostered and countenanced 
by bishops and clergy, and even by the pope himself — cases 

* See Edgar's learned and elaborate "work on "The Variations of 
Popery." passim. London, Seeley and Burnside, 1838. 



6 MARKS OF A TRUE CHURCH. 

of female fanaticism eclipsing the mania of Joanna Southcote 
herself. For example, Beata, of Cuenza in Spain, declared, 
by special revelation, that her body was transubstantiated into 
the substance of our Lord's body. The Spanish priests and 
monks, as well as many lay votaries, conducted her in pro- 
cession, with prostrations and burning of incense, through the 
streets — and all this, be it remembered, under the sunshine 
of an infallible Church. Clara of Madrid aspired to be a 
prophetess. The infallible Pope Pius VII. recognized her as 
such : an altar was erected opposite her bed : mass was often 
said in her chamber, and the sacrament was left there as in a 
sacred repository. She pretended to her followers that she 
took no food but the consecrated bread. This delusion lasted 
for several years.* 

II. The second mark of the true Church which Rome 
claims for herself is that of sanctity, or holiness. "The 
Catholic Church alone," says Gother, " has always been holy, 
by teaching holiness to all, by inviting all to holiness, by af- 
fording all helps and means to holiness, and by having, in all 
ages, innumerable holy ones in her communion." 

In the first place, the Church of Rome professes to teach 
lioly doctrines to all her people, and to the whole world. Now 
this claim may be summarily disposed of by distinctly chal- 
lenging her advocates to prove that her doctrines are drawn 
from Holy Scripture. As long as the book written by " holy 
men/' who "spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost/' 
remains in the world, it will furnish a standing protest against 
the doctrines of Romanism. If to accommodate herself by 
her doctrines to the desires of the natural man — if to natter 
the pride of self-righteousness, by providing pardon and peace 
through something that man can do, or man can suffer, or 
man can buy with money— -if to dishonor Christ in all his 
offices of " Prophet, Priest, and King" — if, while acknowledg- 
ing the personality and Deity of the Holy Ghost, his blessed 
agency as " Lord and Giver of life" is set aside by her exclu- 
sive claim to renew the soul by the opus operatum of baptism, 
and to sanctify it by penance, extreme unction, and purgatorial 
fire—-if these are holy doctrines, then Rome is a holy Church. 
But if such abominable doctrines prove her sanctity then may 



Edgar's " Variations of Popery," pp. 10, 11. 



MARKS OF A TRUE CHURCH. 9 

we also believe that, instead of darkness prevailing at mid- 
night, there is the blaze of the noonday sun. 

Further, we deny the truth of the assertion — that the 
Church of Rome provides the means of holiness. And why ? 
Because she does not supply motives from which alone holy 
conduct can flow. The whole system is one of bondage : it 
is a religion of trembling solicitude, not of holy liberty and 
love. Regeneration is therein bestowed by baptism ; but if 
"the white robe" in which the soul is then dressed be stained 
by the commission of sin, the tribunal of confession must be 
resorted to ; but even while the priest absolves from the guilt, 
he cannot deliver from the punishment, which may extend 
even beyond the grave. Besides, when the prescribed penances 
have been performed, a fresh account of sin has in the mean- 
time accumulated : the work must commence again ; and the 
fable of Sisyphus rolling a stone up the mountain-side, which 
as constantly rolled back upon him, is realized in the melan- 
choly experience of Romanists. Where, we ask, in all this, 
is the discovery of " the glory of God in the face of Jesus 
Christ?" where the smiling face of a Father? where the loving 
voice of a compassionate Redeemer, saying, " Son, be of good 
cheer : thy sins are forgiven thee ?" where the experience of 
the primitive saints, who could say, " Being justified by faith, 
we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ?" 
where the "worshippers once purged" by the daily and hourly 
resort to the blood of atonement, having " no more conscience 
of sins?" The god of the Romanists is not "the God and 
Father of our Lord Jesus Christ;" but, contemplated with an 
eye of apprehension, he ever seems stern and awful, vindictive 
and severe. The very Saviour himself, " full of grace and 
truth," yearning with compassionate tenderness over the chief 
of sinners, is the "king of justice," while Mary is the 
" queen OF mercy," who must soften his heart towards the 
guilty. 

Rome, moreover, denounces the doctrine of the " assurance 
of hope." The possession of "a good hope through grace," 
the being "filled with peace and joy in believing, and abound- 
ing in hope through the power of the Holy Ghost," the " wit- 
ness of the Spirit with our spirit that we are the children of 
God" — all these, she anathematizes as Protestant heresy. 
From first to last, therefore, her disciple is never encouraged 



10 MARKS OP A TRUE CHURCH. 

to say, " I know whom I have believed, and am persuaded 
that he is able to keep that which I have committed unto him 
against that day." How different the true and holy doctrine 
of the gospel, under which we are permitted to say, " God 
hath not given us the spirit of fear ; but of power, and of 
love, and of a sound mind." How blessed the contrast be- 
tween the "fear" that "hath torment," and the "perfect 
love" that " casteth out fear." The terror of the trembling 
slave is exchanged for the gratitude of the child, and he cries, 
"I will run in the way of thy commandments, because thou 
hast enlarged my heart." And when the heart is thus " en- 
larged," the Saviour's yoke is indeed easy, and his burden is 
light. The iron of a cruel bondage no longer enters the soul ; 
and the gospel coming not in word only, but in the Holy 
Ghost, and in much assurance, there is the cheerful surrender 
of devoted hearts, and a " willing people," in the day of the 
Redeemer's power. 

The gospel of the grace of God alone provides the motives 
to holiness. Paul says, "I beseech you therefore, brethren, 
by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living 
sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable 
service." Peter also knew the power of this motive, when 
he speaks of the "precious faith obtained through the 
righteousness of God and our Saviour Jesus Christ," and of 
the " exceeding great and precious promises" whereby we are 
made "partakers of the Divine nature;" and when he repre- 
sents Christians as "a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, 
a holy nation," to "show forth the praises of Him who 
hath called them out of darkness into his marvellous light." 
Without scriptural motives, there can be no scriptural holi- 
ness. Wherever the holy doctrines of the grace of God 
are displaced by the doctrines that appeal to selfish fear, then 
purity of heart and life cannot follow. It was the glory of 
the Reformation, that it placed on their deep foundations the 
two grand doctrines, justification by the merit of the Son, 
and sanctification by the grace of the Spirit. The one 
presents the atonement of Christ as the ground of a sinner's 
acceptance with God: the other points to that omnipotent 
agency by which God works in the soul "all the good pleasure 
of his goodness," and makes it meet for "the inheritance of 
the saints in light." We bless God, that even now we see 



MARKS OP A TRUE CHURCH. 11 

the power of these truths, and that by the mighty inihience 
of a Saviour's love, and the glorious "attraction of the 
cross," there are many in the midst of us, to whom, though 
"once disobedient, and to every good work reprobate/' it can 
be joyfully said, "Such were some of you; but ye are washed, 
but ye are justified, but ye are sanctified, in the name of the 
Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God." 

Again, baptism and the Lord's supper are "means of holi- 
ness." They are holy ordinances, instituted by Christ him- 
self. In baptism, the sign points to the washing of regene- 
ration and the renewing of the Holy Grhost. In the Lord's 
supper, through the broken bread and the poured-out wine, 
the believer beholds a dying Saviour, and looks with mourning 
eye upon Him whom by his sins he has pierced. But are 
Rome's seven sacraments of this character ? Why, baptism 
itself and the Lord's supper are utterly perverted from their 
original design. In baptism the opus opera fum is every 
thing, and the Holy Spirit, as the only Sanctifier, is not re- 
cognized.* In the sacrifice of the mass, " the feast of com- 
memoration" is no longer there, because the Saviour himself 
is present upon the altar, in his body and blood, soul and 
Divinity, and is thus received by the faithful. But when you 
look at the other five sacraments of Borne, namely, confirma- 
tion, matrimony, orders, penance, and extreme unction, need 
we say that these are not means of grace ? because Christ 
never appointed them, and therefore they can never be the 
channels through which his Spirit, in its sanctifying power, 
shall be permitted to flow. Look, for example, at the sacra- 
ment of extreme unction. It is a delusion, and sends a sinner 
into eternity with a lie in his right hand. Look at the sacra- 
ment of " penance." Who does not know to what frightful 
abuses it has led ? We dare not quote extracts from those 
polluted and abominable works which are put into the hands 
of the priesthood to direct them in the confessional, and which 
a priest of Borne some time ago impudently styled, "practical 
books in the science of holiness." "If the work of Liguori" 
(which contains these instructions) "could be seen in its 



* Dr. Wiseman, in his Lectures, in expounding the Sacrament of 
Baptism, says, "The soul can be cleansed from sin and placed in a 
state of grace before God, by the bare action of water applied with 
certain words to the body." 



12 MARKS OF A TRUE CHURCH. 

naked hideousness, translated into the natural tongue, alj 
England," says Cumming, " would be so horrified that it would 
not even tolerate the presence of a system that dares to re- 
cognize such atrocities." 

Next we arc told, that Rome is possessed of the mark of 
holiness, because " she has in all ages had innumerable holy 
ones in her communion." There was, indeed, a blessed time 
when the Church at Rome was holy, when their "faith was 
spoken of throughout the world," even when the apostle Paul 
wrote his epistle "to all that be in Rome, beloved of Grod, 
called to be saints," Rom. i. 7, who, though once " the ser- 
vants of sin," had "obeyed from the heart that form of doc- 
trine which was delivered" to them, who had become "free 
from sin," and "servants to God;" having their "fruit unto 
holiness, and the end everlasting life." But how, since that 
time, has "the gold become dim ! the most fine gold changed !" 
When the "mystery of iniquity," characterized by "all de- 
ceivableness of unrighteousness," began to prevail, and when, 
instead of the doctrine of Christ, the reign of superstition 
and will-worship was triumphant, what fearful abominations 
crept into that Church ! A vacancy in the see of Rome was 
commonly signalized by disorders and crimes of fearful magni- 
tude. In the year of our Lord 353, at the election of Libe- 
rius, many lives were sacrificed, and men were slain even in 
the churches themselves. In an after age, simony was openly 
practiced, and murders, robberies, and other horrible outrages 
perpetrated. It might be expected that the popes, each of 
whom, according to Romanist teaching, was necessarily, by his 
office, the vicar of Jesus Christ, and who had the special title 
of "his holiness," would be preeminently holy and pure. 
But Romish historians themselves have handed down the 
names of many of them who were monsters. Such was Vi- 
gilius, who was emphatically styled "a wicked man." Such 
was a Boniface, a Sextus, an Alexander, a Julius, and a Leo 
— men guilty of crimes too horrible to mention. In the tenth 
century, Baronius, a Romish cardinal, thus writes : — 

"What was then the face of the Holy Roman Church? 
How exceedingly foul was it when powerful and abandoned 
women ruled at Rome, at whose will sees were changed, 
bishops appointed, and (horrible as it is to hear, and unfit to 
be spoken) false pontiffs, their lovers, intruded into the chair 



MARKS OF A TRUE CHURCH. 13 

of Peter, who are only written in the catalogue of Roman 
pontiffs for the sake of marking the times. Lust, relying on 
the secular power, mad, and stimulated with the rage of 
dominion, claimed every thing for itself. Then, as it seems, 
Christ evidently was in a deep sleep in the ship, when by the 
violence of the winds the ship itself was covered by the 
waves/' 

The eleventh century presented no signs of improvement. 
Those who were "bound by their office to correct the sins of 
others, sinned worse than the rest, being themselves blind 
leaders of the blind : in morals, Pharisees ; in works, Saddu- 
cees ; in vileness, Nicolaitans ; in avarice, Simoniacs." 

"I scarcely find any bishops," said Gregory VII., "who 
are lawful either in thei r entrance or mode of life, who govern 
Christian people from the love of Christ, and not from worldly 
ambition • and among all secular princes, I know of none who 
prefer God's honor to their own, and righteousness to gain. 
In short, those among whom I dwell, the Romans, namely, 
the Lombards and the Normans, I hold to be, in some re- 
spects, worse than Jews and pagans, as I often tell them." 

"The Roman Church," said John of Salisbury, A. D. 
1179, "which is the mother of all churches, does not so much 
show herself to be a mother to other churches as a stepmother. 
The Scribes and Pharisees sit in her, laying intolerable bur- 
dens upon the shoulders of men, which they do not touch 
with their fingers. They domineer over the clergy, nor are 
they a pattern to the flock." 

Pope Innocent III. addressed the general council of Late- 
ran, A. D. 1215, in these words : — " It is time, as the blessed 
apostle saith, that judgment should begin with the house of 
the Lord : 1 Peter iv. 17 For all the corruption which is in 
the people chiefly proceeds from the clergy, since if the 
anointed priest sins he causes the people to sin ; for when the 
laity behold them living vilely and outrageously, through their 
example they fall into iniquity and wickedness. And when 
they are reproved by any one, they immediately excuse them- 
selves, saying, ' The son must do what he sees his father do ; 
and it is enough if the disciple resembles his master/ The 
saying of the prophet is fulfilled, 'As is the people, so is the 
priest/ " 

These and many other testimonies might be given to show 
2 



14 MARKS OF A TRUE CHURCH. 

the state of the Papacy, and the impurity of the Church of 
Rome, when she held universal sway over Europe. 

But let us examine for a moment the characteristics of the 
piety or sanctity of those "innumerable ones" whom she 
boasts as having had in her communion. According to her 
standard, the highest proofs of holiness are three : — first, 
chastity; second, voluntary poverty; and, lastly, submission 
to the will of a superior. In reference to the first, by an en- 
forced celibacy she has trampled upon God's holy institution ; 
and it is enough to say, that the history of the Church is 
stained with a fearful amount of its abominations. In reference 
to the second, voluntary poverty, we may just mention, that 
from this being taught as a duty, many have been led to give 
all their property to the Church, robbing parents and others 
who needed their aid, and which gave existence to the order 
of mendicant friars, who have been often a disgrace to religion 
and a curse to Europe. With regard to the third, submission 
to the will of a superior, the whole of the Jesuit system is 
founded upon it; and we know what the character of these 
Jesuits has been — so that even Iioman Catholic kingdoms 
and countries have been compelled to banish them for their 
wickedness. The following, as given in the works of Arch- 
bishop Usher, is the oath of secrecy taken by the Jesuits : — 

"I, A. B., now in the presence of Almighty Cod, the 
blessed Virgin Mary, the blessed Michael the archangel, the 
Messed St. John the Baptist, the holy apostles St. Peter and 
St. Paul, and the saints and secret hosts of heaven, and to 
you my ghostly father, do declare from my heart, without 
mental reservation, that his Holiness Pope Urban is Christ's 
vicar-general, and is the true and only head of the Catholic 
or universal Church throughout the earth; and that, by the 
virtue of the keys of binding and loosing given to his holiness 
by my Saviour Jesus Christ, he hath power to depose heretical 
kings, princes, states, commonwealths, and governments, 
all being illegal without his sacred confirmation, and that they 
may be safely destroyed: therefore, to the utmost of my 
power, I shall and will defend this doctrine, and his holiness' s 
rights and customs, against all usurpers of the heretical (or 
Protestant) authority whatsoever, especially against the now 
pretended authority of the Church of England, and all ad- 
herents, in regard that they and she be usurpal and heretical. 



MARKS OP A TRUE CHURCH. It; 

opposing the sacred mother Church of Rome. I do renounce 
and disown any allegiance as due to any heretical king, 
prince, or state named Protestant, or obedience to any of 
their inferior magistrates or officers. I do further declare, 
that the doctrine of the Church of England, of the Calvinists, 
Huguenots, and of other of the name of Protestants, is damna- 
ble; and they themselves are damned, and to be damned, 
that will not forsake the same. I do further declare that I 
will help, assist, and advise all or any of his holiness' s agents, 
in any place wherever I shall be, in England, Scotland, and 
Ireland, or in any other territory or kingdom I shall come to, 
and do my utmost to extirpate the heretical Protestants' doc- 
trine, and to destroy all their pretended powers, regal or 
otherwise. I do further promise and declare, that I am dis- 
pensed with to assume any religion heretical for the propaga- 
gation of the mother Church's interests, to keep secret and 
private all her agents' counsels from time to time,' as they 
intrust mej and not to divulge, directly or indirectly, by word, 
circumstance, or writing whatsoever ; but to execute all that 
shall be proposed, given in charge, or discovered unto me, by 
you my ghostly father, or any of this sacred convent. All 
which, I, A. B., do swear by the blessed Trinity, and blessed 
sacrament which I am now to receive, to perform, and on my 
part to keep inviolably; and do call all the heavenly and 
glorious host of heaven to witness these my real intentions to 
keep this oath. In testimony hereof, I take this most holy 
and blessed sacrament of the eucharist; and witness the same 
further with my hand and seal, in the face of this holy con 
vent, this day of An. Dom.," etc. 

Let us next notice the " good works," of which the Church 
of Rome boasts. It must here be borne in mind that works 
apparently good are unholy in the sight of Q-od when the 
motives that prompt them are impure : " Man looketh on the 
outward appearance, but the Lord looketh on the heart." In 
the " Catechism of Christian Doctrine," drawn up for the use 
of the diocese of Limerick by the Right Rev. Dr. Young, the 
following questions and answers are found : — 

" What is the foundation of indulgences ? 

" The superabundant satisfaction of Christ and his saints, 
by which the virtue of the communion of saints is applicable 



16 MARKS OF A TRUE CHURCH. 

to any one in a state of grace, who may be indebted to God's 
justice. 

" What do you mean by doing an action well ? 

" I mean the doing it so, or in such a manner, that God 
may have no cause to find fault with it. 

"Are good actions of any other benefit to a Christian, besides 
making him virtuous ? 

" Yes ; for moreover, every good action is meritorious, im- 
petratory, and satisfactory. 

" What do you mean by a good action being meritorious ? 

11 1 mean that it deserves to be rewarded by God. 

" What do you mean by its being impetratory ? 

" I mean that it claims and solicits God's grace, and a con- 
tinuance and increase of it. 

" What do you mean by its being satisfactory ? 

" I mean that it is capable of atoning for the punishment 
due to sin. 

" Can a good action be of any service to any other besides 
the doer ? 

" Yes : in consequence of the communion of saints. 

" How so ? 

" By a good action, one may impetrate and satisfy for others 
as well as himself. " 

Here then it is taught that good works can satisfy not only 
for our own sins, but also make atonement for the sins of 
others ! Then, again, the Romish estimate of what constitutes 
good works is false and unscriptural ! If good works con- 
sisted in bodily mortifications, in attending masses, in con- 
fessing to a priest, in scourgings, in pilgrimages to holy wells 
and other sacred places, in undergoing severe penance, in the 
vain repetition of prayers, in image-worship, in confidence in 
saintly intercessors, in the observance of many rites and cere- 
monies, in keeping clear of the company of heretics, and 
taking care never to peruse heretical and forbidden books, 
especially the Bible, — if such were holiness, Rome might 
boast of it. But the holiness which God's word requires is, 
to "put off the old man, which is corrupt according to the 
deceitful lusts," and to " put on the new man, which after 
God is created in righteousness and true holiness :" it is to 
possess and exhibit the " fruit of the Spirit — love, joy, peace 



MARKS OF A TRUE CHURCH. 17 

long-suffering, meekness, goodness, faith, temperance:" it is 
to deny " ungodliness and worldly lusts," and to " live soberly, 
righteously, and godly in this present world :" it is to have 
" the word of Christ dwelling in us richly in all wisdom ;" 
and to hide it in our hearts, that we may not sin against God. 
Does it conduce to morality when the canonized saints of a 
Church are found to be men who have propounded principles 
which not only insult the honor of Christ, but which teach 
every thing that is unholy under the name of virtue ? What 
shall be said of St. Bonaventura, the bold blasphemer, who 
turned the Psalms into a psalter for the Virgin, and unblush- 
ingly gives to her divine worship in those very words intended 
by the Holy Ghost for God alone ? What of Peter Dens, to 
read whose works, which form class-books at Maynooth, were 
enough to contaminate the purest mind? What does the 
reader think of the morality and holiness contained in the 
" Moral Theology" of Alphonsus Liguori? Here are some 
of the principles of this canonized saint, whose life has been 
written by Dr. Wiseman, and with regard to whom his Church 
has declared that there is " not one word in his writings worthy 
of censure." He teaches, for instance, dissimulation in re- 
ligion : that a Romanist, interrogated by authority, may con- 
ceal the truth : that he may lie concealed among heretics if 
he can thereby accomplish a greater amount of good : that it 
is lawful to equivocate for a just cause, and such a just cause 
is good in a spiritual point of view : that to equivocate even 
without a just cause, in swearing, is only a venial offence : 
that a servant may assist his master to commit sin, yea, gross 
sin, if he is in fear of great loss by his refusal : that a servant, 
if he is not sufficiently remunerated by his master, may re- 
munerate himself : that the pope for a good cause may change 
the will of a testator i that the pope can decree that the 
observance of the Lord's day, which is not of Divine but 
ecclesiastical appointment, shall only continue for a few hours ; 
and that certain servile works shall be lawful on that day : 
that a man who is afraid to subject himself to perpetual impri- 
sonment in the galleys, or be led out to execu». : ~u. may commit 
suicide in prison : that a safe conduct promised uo heretics in 
appearing before a council may be violated — 'and the council oi 
Constance, we know, did violate it in the case of John Huss, 
who, after receiving a safe conduct from the emperor, was burned 
2 



18 MARKS OF A TRUE CHURCH. 

alive :) that heresy is a greater crime than homicide or min- 
der : that a child may be compelled to denounce his father foi 
heresy, and the father his son ; and that a heretic (that is, 
one who denies any article of the creed of Pope Pius IV., 
such as the supremacy of the pope, the invocation of saints, 
transubstantiation, the mass, or purgatory) may be tortured 
and put to death !* 

Once more we are compelled to demand, whether sanctity 
and persecution are compatible ? The Church of Rome has 
made herself " drunken with the blood of the saints." We 
have not space to detail her persecutions. Let the reader 
remember the fearful carnage perpetrated, under the autho- 
rity of a papal bull, against the Waldenses and Albigenses, 
those faithful witnesses for God in the dark ages, and repeated 
in the seventeenth century. Let him recall the horrible 
atrocities of the inquisition of Spain, the dreadful instruments 
of torture, (which Liguori himself describes,) the burning of 
heretics at the Auto da Fe, or "Act of Faith," as it was 
called, in the great square at Madrid, at which the monarch, 
the grandees, and a vast multitude were present, looking at 
the expiring heretic with greater zest than even now the 
Spanish court and people gaze on the brutal bull-fight. Re- 
member, again, the frightful conduct of the Duke of Alva, the 
general of Charles V., whose wholesale butcheries of the Pro- 
testants of Holland extended to a hundred thousand souls. 
Recollect also, in the days of Queen Mary, the fires of Smith- 
field, and Oxford, and St. Andrew's, in Great Britain. "VVe 
need scarcely remind those who have read modern history of 
the massacre of St. Bartholomew, in Paris and throughout 
France. Two medals were struck to commemorate this event : 
one by order of Charles IX. of France, who, during the 
slaughter had cried, " Kill, kill, kill !" and who with the 
queen-mother, had contemplated the butchery with savage 
delight. On one side of this medal there was the figure of 
himself sitting on a throne, treading on dead bodies ; and on 
the reverse the arms of France, with this inscription : "Pietas 
cjcitutjustifiawi, (Piety excites justice.) The second medal 



;: See "Awful Disclosures," by the Rev. M. Blakeney, A. B., where 
the above-meiitiono<l opinions of Liguori are given in the original 
Latin. London, 18G0. 



MARKS OF A TRUE CHURCH. 19 

was struck at Rome by order of Gregory XIII. On one side 
was the figure of the pope, with the inscription, " Gregorius 
XIII. Pont. Max. An. I. :" on the other, the figure of an 
angel, with a cross in one hand and a sword in the other, 
rushing upon the Protestants, many of whom lie slain before 
him, with the inscription, " Ugonottorum Strages," (The 




slaughter of the Huguenots.) Three paintings, moreover, 
were ordered by this pope from an eminent artist, the design 
of which was to commemorate the bloody deed. 

Remember, again, the frightful massacre of the Protestants 
of Ireland in 1641. "A universal massacre/' says Hume, 
u commenced of the English (Protestants), now defenceless, 
and passively resigned to their inhuman foes : no age, no sex, 
no condition was spared. The wife weeping for her butchered 
husband, and embracing her helpless children, was pierced 
with them, and perished by the same stroke : the old, the 
young, the vigorous, the infirm, underwent the like fate, and 
were confounded in one common ruin. In vain did flight 
save from the first assault, destruction was everywhere let 
loose, and met the hunted victims at every turn. Amidst all 
these enormities, the sacred name of religion sounded on every 
side, not to stop the hands of these murderers, but to enforce 
their blows, and to steel their hearts against every movement 
of human or social sympathy. The English, as heretics 
abhorred of God, and detestable to all holy men, were marked 
out by the priests for slaughter ; and of all actions, to rid the 
world of these declared enemies to Catholic faith and piety 
was represented as the most meritorious in its nature, which 



20 MARKS OF A TRUE CHURCH. 

in that rude people, sufficiently inclined to atrocious deeds, 
was further stimulated by precepts and national prejudices, 
empoisoned by those aversions, more deadly and incurable, 
which arose from an enraged superstition. While death 
finished the sufferings of each victim, the bigoted assassins, 
with joy and exultation, still echoed in his expiring ears, that 
these agonies were but the commencement of torments infinite 

and eternal.' 

For all these atrocities, Pope Urban VIII. granted a full 
and plenary indulgence, and absolute remission of all sins. 
And no wonder ; for what we call persecution, in the eyes 
of the Romish doctors is no persecution at all. You have 
their opinion in a note of the Rhemish translators of the 
Bible, on the passage in Rev. xvii. 6, " Drunken with the 
blood of the saints." They say, " Protestants foolishly ex- 
pound it of Rome, for that there they put heretics to death, 
and allow of their punishment in other countries. But their 
blood is not called the blood of saints, no more than the 
blood of thieves, man-killers, and other malefactors/'' 

Peter Dens, who is a recognized Romish authority, quotes 
with approbation Thomas Aquinas, in answer to the question, 
"Are heretics justly punished with death V 

"Yes. Because forgers of money and other disturbers of 
the state are justly punished with death. Therefore also 
heretics, who are forgers of the faith, and, as experience 
testifies, grievously disturb the state." 

We ask again, Can sanctity and persecution be reconciled, 
or be regarded as compatible? Can the Church that perse- 
cutes be what she claims to be — a holy Church ? She may 
tell us of " the holy fathers," of her holy saints, her holy 
bishops and clergy; but the truth of history, the evidence of 
ten thousand facts, compels us to denounce the assumption 
of sanctity as a fraud ; and we are thus led to say to her 
popes, cardinals, and doctors, in the words of Christ to the 

* This extract from Hume's History is given by the llev. Mr. 
Graham, as an introduction to his interesting work, The Annals of 
Ireland. "That he lias not heightened the picture beyond reality," 
says the author, "the writings of Temple, of Clarendon, of Rush- 
wortli, ol' Wliitlock, contemporary historians, and volumes of original 
depositions taken on the occasion, and now extant in the library of 
Trinity College, Dublin, sufficiently prove." 



MARKS OF A TRUE CHURCH. 21 

Scribes and the Pharisees, " Ye are like unto whited sepul- 
chres, which indeed appear beautiful outward, but within are 
full of dead men's bones, and of all uncleanness : even so ye 
also outwardly appear righteous unto men, but within ye are 
full of hypocrisy and iniquity." 

III. The third mark of a true Church claimed by Rome is 
catholicity. By the word "catholic" is meant "univer- 
sal." Dr. Milner, the Roman Catholic writer, in his " End 
of Controversy," (p. 284,) says : — " The true Church is catho- 
lic, or universal, in three several respects — as to persons, as 
to places, and as to time. It consists of the most numerous 
body of Christians; it is more or less diffused wherever 
Christianity prevails ; and it has visibly existed ever since 
the days of the apostles." 

First, it is argued that the Romish is the true Church, be- 
cause she consists of the most numerous body. Now, inde- 
pendently of the fact that she is emphatically antichristian 
in her doctrine and her spirit, we affirm that truth cannot be 
ascertained by a mere appeal to numbers. If that were the 
case, the little company of a hundred and twenty in the 
upper chamber at Jerusalem would not have been a true 
Church at all, for they were but a fraction, compared with 
the mass of their fellow-countrymen, the Jews. If that were 
the test, then with what face could the apostles have gone 
forth, and set up Christian assemblies in opposition to the 
millions of pagan idolaters ? Might not the heathen priests 
of the temple of Jupiter or of Diana have turned round on 
them, and said, " Your religion is not catholic, for it does not 
comprise the most numerous body?" In the present day, if 
mere numbers were the test of truth, why not embrace the 
religion of the Chinese, who form a third of the population 
of the globe ? If Protestantism were to prevail a little more 
extensively, and to embrace one or two nations more than it 
does at the present time, would Dr. Milner or his supporters 
admit that, because Protestantism had acquired the majority, 
their Church had ceased to be the Catholic Church ? The 
truth is, neither numbers nor names will settle the contro- 
versy. A man is called a Protestant, simply because he pro- 
tests against Romish usurpations and errors; but he is a 
catholic Christian, in the true and proper sense of the word, 
if he is born from above, if he is a child of God by faith in 



22 MARKS OP A TRUE CHURCH. 

Jesus Christ, if he is a member of the family of the redeemed, 
and thus included in the blessed company of " all that in 
every place call upon the name of Jesus Christ our Lord, 
both theirs and ours." 

Again, the fact that Romanists are the most numerous 
body is more easily asserted than proved. How do they make 
out their case ? Why, by putting down half a dozen of the 
chief kingdoms of Europe — for instance, France, thirty mil- 
lions ; Spain, twenty millions ; Italy, eighteen millions — and 
thus soon running up an account on paper of more than a 
hundred millions of Romanists. But who does not know 
that the whole of the so-called Catholic countries of the con- 
tinent are overrun with infidelity ? The great mass of the 
male population in France never enter a Romish church. 
Blanco White, writing in 1828, declared, from personal know- 
ledge, that the bulk of the Spanish priests were concealed 
infidels. No wonder, indeed, that Rome should be the mo- 
ther, and infidelity the daughter, when no other type of 
Christianity is seen but hers ; and when there is not shown 
to the people under her sway that beautiful and divine por- 
trait which is drawn of her in the New Testament. No 
wonder that men's intellects should revolt from such a mass 
of incredible absurdities, and that, not knowing the true re- 
fuge, they should plunge into the gulf of infidelity. No 
wonder, also, that the Jew should thus be hardened in his 
hatred to Christianity, when he sees only the Romish repre- 
sentation of it. We have been assured by one who was not 
long since a Jewish rabbi, but who now, through Protestant 
instrumentality, is a firm believer in Jesus as the true Mes- 
siah, that had he remained in Poland, his native country, 
where the only form of the Christian religion that ever met 
his eye was Romanism, so thoroughly was he convinced that 
in the worship of images there was a violation of one of the 
commandments of the holy and unchangeable law of God, 
and the guilt of idolatry contracted, that it was impossible he 
could ever have become a Christian. 

Resides all this, how unscriptural and absurd are the 
grounds on which Rome boasts of the numbers that are her 
adherents ! According to her, all baptized persons belong to 
her, and over them she claims spiritual jurisdiction. But 
mors than this, it is easy to add to the numerous body of 



MARKS OP A TRUE CHURCH. 23 

u Catholics " by the wholesale baptism of heathen children. 
For instance, missionaries have gone forth within the last few 
years from the Propaganda to Tahiti and other islands of the 
South Sea, and while the converts that Protestant mission- 
aries had made there have rejected their claims, and, when 
presented with crucifixes and images, have said, " Take away 
these things, we have done with idols," yet these men have 
sent home glowing assurances as to the number of souls they 
have saved. They have induced heathen mothers to deliver 
their little children into their arms, under the pretence that 
they were about to sprinkle upon them some perfumed water, 
and have then used the consecrated water of baptism ; and 
thus they say, because many of these little ones die in in- 
fancy, they have been the instruments of sending many souls 
to heaven. 

Dr. Milner again declares, that the Church is catholic, or 
universal, because she is not confined within the limits of one 
country. " Everywhere," says Keenan, in his " Controver- 
sial Catechism " (a work in large circulation, which, for un- 
blushing misstatements, claims the palm above all its rivals,) 
11 everywhere her incense ascends, everywhere her sacraments 
are administered, everywhere her pure sacrifices are offered." 
Now these assertions, in point of fact, cannot be proved. 
There are vast regions in central Africa which the foot of a 
Christian missionary never trod. In the far distant east of 
Asia there are vast nomadic tribes who, as we are assured, have 
never heard the Redeemer's name. Besides, if Romanism is 
not confined to one country, neither is Protestantism. If Rome 
has six or eight European nations, with colonies in different 
parts of the world, and carrying on commercial transactions 
with various and distant regions, is it any wonder that the 
Romish religion should be more or less practiced ? But if 
this is to prove her catholicity, does not the argument hold 
equally valid as to Protestantism, whose influence is spread- 
ing in the east and in the west, in the north and in the 
south, not only by the mighty commerce of Britain and 
America, but by the combined energies of Protestant mis- 
sionaries in every region of the globe ? If the Bible So- 
cieties have sent forth the Scriptures in 140 dialects and 
languages, among the nations of the globe — if our missionary 
heroes have scattered the incorruptible seed over vast conti 



24 MARKS OF A TRUE CHURCH. 

nents, and over the islands of every sea — is not this better 
proof, taken in connection with the blessed fruits that have 
followed, of the true " catholicity" of evangelical Protest- 
antism than Rome can possibly furnish ? 

There are two powerful reasons why we need not wonder 
that Rome should have acquired such an extensive sway : — 
1st, Prom the spiritual ignorance which she has everywhere 
fostered ; and 2d, Prom the iron tyranny of persecution which 
she has so ruthlessly exercised, and by which in several coun- 
tries, as in Spain and Italy, she extinguished th,e Reforma- 
tion in blood. 

But, in addition to all this, the word of God itself leads us 
to expect that there should arise a fearful system of apostasy 
from the faith of Christ, which should be long triumphant. 
It was expressly foretold that the second coming of Christ 
■should not arrive, "except there come a falling away first, 
and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition ; who 
opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, 
or that is worshipped ; so that he as God sitteth in the temple 
of God." 2 Thess. ii. o, 4. We are further told by the 
apostle Paul, that this corruption of Christianity was already 
leavening the Church : "The mystery of iniquity doth already 
work ; only he who now letteth (that is, the pagan empire of 
Rome) will let, (or hinder the development of the apostasy,) 
until he be taken out of the way ; and then shall that Wicked 
be revealed — whose coming is after the working of Satan with 
all power and signs and lying wonders," verses 7-9. Again 
he says, "Now the Spirit speak eth expressly, that in the 
latter times some shall depart (Gr. apostatize) from the faith, 
giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils, (or 
demons;) speaking lies in hypocrisy; having their conscience 
seared with a hot iron ; forbidding to marry, and commanding 
to abstain from meats, which God hath created to be received 
with thanksgiving of them which believe and know the 
truth." 1 Tim. iv. 1-3. To what community does this por- 
trait apply but t<> the Church of Rome? Has she not incor- 
porated in her creed the doctrine of demons by declaring that 
"the saints reigning with Christ are to be honored andlnvo- 
eated':" If she says, that the "forbidding to marry," and 
*' commanding to abstain from meats," refer to ancieut here- 
tics, has she not adopted their heresy? When the pa^an em- 



MARKS OF A TRUE CHURCH. 25 

pire of Rome was removed, and when Constantine ascended 
the throne, did not the "apostasy," under the sunshine of 
prosperity, rapidly develop itself? Does not the hook of 
Daniel tell us of a great power that was to rise up — the little 
horn, that should "speak great words against the Most High, 
and should wear out the saints of the Most High, and think 
to change times and laws ?" Dan. vii. 25. Has not papal 
Rome realized the prediction in her blasphemous usurpation 
of the offices and titles of Deity, in her novel and unau- 
thorized holy days, in her spurious sacraments, in her blotting 
out of her catechisms the second commandment, and in her 
persevering persecutions ? Does not the book of Revelation, 
ch. xii., tell us of "a woman" (which is the Church) driven 
into the wilderness, 1260 days (prophetic years) ; and there- 
fore we ask, Is it any wonder that the witnesses for Grod 
should for many ages of prevailing corruption have been com- 
paratively few, and that apostate Rome should have extensive 
sway even to this hour ? 

IV Lastly, the Church of Rome claims apostolicity. 
"Every Church pretending to be the Church of Christ/' we 
are told, " must be able to trace her doctrines, her orders, and 
her mission, from the apostles of Christ." Now, grant- 
ing the truth of this proposition, we deny that Rome has re- 
ceived many of her doctrines, or her orders and mission, from 
the apostles. As to the question of mission and orders, she 
falsely assumes that Christ committed the power of the keys 
to Peter; that he transferred this to the bishops of Rome; 
and that through the channel of the papal see the orders of 
the Christian priesthood alone can flow. These statements 
have been already confuted. But if Rome insists on the 
necessity of a papal channel for her orders, let it be remem- 
bered how polluted . was that channel. Liberius was an 
Arian. Boniface VIII. denied the Trinity, the incarnation, 
and the immortality of the soul. John XXIII. was deposed 
for his wickedness. Formosus was guilty of perjury. Ste- 
phen VII. was a ringleader in every vice ; and Baronius, the 
Romish historian, says " that he entered like a thief, and died, 
as he deserved, by the rope." Benedict IX. was created a 
pope at the age of ten or twelve, and spent his days in de- 
bauchery, rapine, and murder. Alexander VI. revelled in 
all licentiousness, and died at last by poison he had prepared 
2* 



26 MARKS OP A TRUE CHURCH. 

for others, and wh.ch he drank by mistake. And yet it is 
through this channel that the orders of the Church of Rome are 
said to flow. But this is not all : the succession has been repeat- 
edly interrupted. In the year 1044, Sylvester, Gregory, and 
Benedict, assumed at one and the same time the name and title 
of the papacy. Alexander III. occupied the chair for twenty- 
two years ; but four rivals disputed his claims. The great 
western schism lasted from 1378 to 1429. Two rival popes 
divided the world between them : each anathematized his 
fellow : each ordained. One of them, therefore, must have 
been a false pope : he could not confer ecclesiastical orders : 
the bishops made by him were no bishops, and the priests 
ordained by a false bishop were no priests : so that no Roman 
Catholic who trusts to this doctrine of apostolical succession, 
can tell whether he has been really baptized or not, and pos- 
sibly many a Roman Catholic bishop or archbishop does not 
know whether the bishop that first made him a priest had his 
succession from the antipope or not. The succession has 
been corrupted, broken, and lost. 

But Rome tells us that her doctrines are apostolical. We 
ask all persons who maintain this position to take the New Tes- 
tament into their hands, and prove it. Let the doctrines of the 
Church of Rome be judged by the language of Christ and 
his apostles. We ask the Romish priests, Do you continue 
steadfastly in the apostles' doctrines ? If so, will you show 
your doctrines written in the Epistle to the Romans ? Or, 
will you give us any valid and plain authority for them from 
the writings of Peter? Moreover, let it be remembered, 
when Scripture is appealed to by Romish doctors, that in 
some cases the original text is falsified* — yea, it will be 
found, again, that their favorite texts can be turned as destruc- 
tive artillery against their own bulwarks; and, when viewed 
in reference to the design of the writer, and illustrated by 
the context, by the analogy of Scripture, and sound criticism, 
they but tend to overwhelm the abettors of Romanism with 
co nfusion. Bes ides, the very silence of the book of Grod is 

* Thus the Greek word mc/unoia (which indicates a "change of 
mind" — godly sorrow for sin) is invariably translated in the Douay 
version "penance." So the word prrsbuteros (that is, elder or pres- 
byter) is six times translated " priest." .See the Rev. T. II. Home's 
admirable work, "Popery the Enemy and Falsifier of Scripture" 
London, 184r> 



MARKS OF A TRUE CHURCH. 27 

a powerful argument on our side, illustrating most strikingly 
the novelty of Romish doctrines. Where, we ask, is any 
mention made of those distinguishing dogmas which Rome 
asserts to be essential? We say, then, this is not "the faith 
once delivered to the saints." To use the language of Ter- 
tullian, one of the fathers, (JPrces. contra Secret,) "Their 
very doctrine itself being compared with the apostolic, by the 
diversity and contrariety thereof, proves that it had for its au- 
thor neither any apostle, nor any man apostolical." 

One word more. The council of Nice, held A. D. 325, 
was summoned and held in consequence of the rise of the 
Arian heresy, by which the glory of Christ, as the co-equal 
and eternal Son of the Father, was obscured and denied. 
" The Nicene Creed," which went forth under the authority 
of this council, was the first dogmatical utterance of the opin- 
ion of the Church after the times of the apostles. For many 
ages, those that held the articles of this creed were always 
recognized as members of the Catholic Church. But take the 
faith of Romanism as we have it now, as it was stereotyped 
by the council of Trent in the sixteenth century, as it is 
summed up in the creed of Pope Pius IV., published in 1564, 
and which is regarded by all Romanists as the authorized 
summary of their faith ; and see what a difference there is 
between the creed of the council of Nice, and the creed of 
modern Rome. 

"I believe in one God, the Father Almighty, maker of 
heaven and earth, and of all things visible and invisible : and 
in one Lord Jesus Christ, the only begotten Son of -God ; 
born of the Father before all worlds ; God of God ; Light of 
Light ; true God of true God ; begotten, not made ; consub- 
stantial to the Father, by whom all things were made ; who, 
for us men, and for our salvation, came down from heaven, 
and was incarnate by the Holy Ghost of the virgin Mary, 
and was made man; was crucified also for us under Pontius 
Pilate, suffered, and was buried, and rose again the third 
day according to the Scriptures, and ascended into heaven; 
sits at the right hand of the. Father, and will come again 
with glory to judge the living and the dead, of whose king- 
dom there will be no end : and in the Holy Ghost, the Lord 
and Life-giver, who proceeds from the Father and the Son ; 
who, together with the Father and the Son, is adored and 



28 MARKS OF A TRUE CHURCH. 

glorified, who spoke by the prophets : and one holy catholic 
and apostolic Church. I confess one baptism for the remis- 
sion of sins; and I expect the resurrection of the body, (of 
the dead — mortuorum,) and the life of the world to come. 
Amen/' 

Pope Pius IV incorporated this in his creed, and then adds 
to it the following : — 

" I most firmly admit and embrace apostolical and eccle- 
siastical traditions, and all other constitutions and observances 
of the same Church. 

" I also admit the Sacred Scriptures, according to the sense 
which the holy mother Church has held, and does hold, to 
whom it belongs to judge of the true sense and interpretation 
of the Holy Scriptures; nor will I ever take or interpret 
them otherwise than according to the unanimous consent of 
the fathers. 

"I profess also, that there are truly and properly seven 
sacraments of the new law, instituted by Jesus Christ our 
Lord, and for the salvation of mankind, though all are not 
necessary for every one, — namely, baptism, confirmation, eu- 
charist, penance, extreme unction, order, and matrimony; 
and that they confer grace ; and of these, baptism, confirma- 
tion, and order, cannot be reiterated without sacrilege. 

" I also receive and admit the ceremonies of the Catholic 
Church, received and approved in the solemn administration 
of all the above said sacraments. 

" I receive and embrace all and every one of the things 
which have been defined and declared in the holy council of 
Trent, concerning original sin and justification. 

"I profess, likewise, that in the mass is offered to God a 
true, proper, and propitiatory sacrifice for the living and the 
dead; and that in the most holy sacrifice of the eucharist 
there is truly, really, and substantially the body and blood, 
together with the soul and Divinity, of our Lord Jesus Christ ; 
and that there is made a conversion of the whole substance of 
the bread into the body, and of the whole substance of the 
wine into the blood, which conversion the Catholic Church 
calls transubstantiation. 

'J I confess also, that under either kind alone, whole and 
entire, Christ and a true sacrament are received. 

" I constantly hold that there is a purgatory, and that the 



MARKS OI 1 A TRUE CHTJRCH. 29 

souls detained therein are helped by the suffrages of the 
aithful 

" Likewise, that the saints reigning together with Christ 
ire to he honored and invocated, that they offer prayers to 
uod for us, and that their relics are to be venerated. 

"I most firmly assert, that the images of Christ, and of the 
mother of Q-od, ever virgin, and also of the other saints, are 
to be had and retained; and that due honor and veneration 
are to be given them. 

" I also affirm that the power of indulgences was left by 
Christ in the Church, and that the use of them is most whole- 
some to Christian people. 

"I acknowledge one holy catholic and apostolic Roman 
Church, the mother and mistress of all churches ; and I pro- 
mise and swear true obedience to the Roman bishop, the 
successor of St. Peter, the prince of the apostles, and vicar of 
Jesus Christ. 

" I also profess and undoubtedly receive all other things 
delivered, defined, and declared by the sacred canons, and 
general councils, and particularly by the holy council of 
Trent; and likewise I also condemn, reject, and anathematize 
all things contrary thereto, and all heresies whatsoever, con- 
demned, rejected, and anathematized by the Church. 

" This true catholic faith, out of which none can be saved, 
which I now freely profess and truly hold, I, N., promise, 
vow, and swear most constantly to hold and profess the same, 
whole and entire, with God's assistance, to the end of my 
life ; and to procure, as far as lies in my power, that the same 
shall be held, taught, and preached by all who are under me, 
or are entrusted to my care, by virtue of my office. So help 
me God, and these holy Gospels of God/' 

Compare this creed with the apostolic doctrines of the 
Nicene fathers, and it is evident that Romanists have not 
continued in the true faith; and the statement made by a 
modern writer will be allowed, that "if a member of the 
council of Nice were to rise from the dead, no Roman Catho- 
lic priest could admit him to communion. " 

The following are the facts of history with regard to the 

successive introduction of some of the false doctrines of Rome. 

Monachism (under which celibacy was set up as a superior 

degree of holiness, accompanied with denunciations of the im- 

3* 



30 MARKS OP A TRUE CHURCH. 

purity of that marriage state which is "honorable in all/' 
both clergy and laity) was established in the fourth century. 
Is that apostolical? Purgatory, and prayers to the saints, 
began to be inculcated in the fifth century. Are they apos- 
tolic ? In the eighth century image-worship prevailed over 
opposition : transubstantiation was recognized in the ninth : 
indulgences were not given earlier than the tenth : the forced 
celibacy of all the clerical orders was not definitely enjoined 
until the eleventh : communion in one kind came into prac- 
tice in the twelfth : auricular confession was decreed in the 
thirteenth : the sacraments were declared to be seven in num- 
ber by the council of Trent in the sixteenth • and by the same 
council many other unscriptural abominations were sanctioned 
and confirmed. In vain will you look for these things, or for 
the doctrine of merit, the Divine authority of the Apocrypha, 
or to various orders of the Romish hierarchy, from the acolyte 
upwards, in the writings of the New Testament. Where, 
then, is the apostolicity of the Church of Rome ? 

In conclusion, we have a few words to add of a practical 
character. First, let every reader remember, that communion 
with the purest section of the visible Church of Christ cannot 
in itself save the soul. " Not every one that saith unto me, 
Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he 
that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven." If 
you would be safe for eternity, you must be of " the circum- 
cision, which worship God in the spirit, and rejoice in Christ 
Jesus, and have no confidence in the flesh :" you must be " in 
Christ" by a personal living faith : in him, as Noah was in 
the ark ; in him, as the man-slayer was in the city of refuge ; 
in him, as the branch in the vine ; in him, as living stones 
upon the great foundation laid in Zion. We entreat you, 
reader, to embrace and hold fast the offers of a Saviour's grace 
and love. "The Spirit and the bride say, Come. And let 
him that hcareth say, Come. And whosoever will, let him 
take the water of life freely." Ask in earnest prayer for the 
indwelling of the Holy Ghost. Under his guidance seek to 
grow in grace: cultivate humility, patience, submission, 
spintual-mindedness, deadness to the world, benevolence to 
all men, forbearance, and forgiveness to your enemies. Re- 
member, you have spiritual foes, and that you can only fi^hr 
and overcome them by watchfulness, faith, and prayer. *I>u 



MARKS OF A TRUE CHURCH. 31 

diligent in the use of the means of grace ; and let the word 
of G-OD be your only directory, the Sqn of GrOD be your only 
Saviour and Intercessor, the Spirit of God your only Sanc- 
tifier, and the glory of GrOD the great end of your existence. 
Lastly, let us rejoice that the true Church of Christ is im- 
mortal in her nature ; and that the gates of hell shall never 
prevail against her. We have fallen indeed on "perilous 
times ;" but, blessed be Grod, the day is coming apace, when 
Popery, the greatest barrier to the final triumphs of the gos- 
pel, shall be swept away for ever ! 

Hark ! the song of jubilee, 

Loud as mighty thunders' roar, 
Or the fulness of the sea, 

When it breaks upon the shore ! 
Hallelujah ! for the Lord 

God omnipotent shall reign : 
Hallelujah ! let the word 

Echo round the earth and main. 

Hallelujah ! — hark ! the sound, 

From the centre to the skies, 
Wakes above, beneath, around, 

All creation's harmonies : 
See Jehovah's banners furl'd, 

Sheathed his sword : he speaks — 'tis done 
And the kingdoms of this world 

Are the kingdoms of his Son ! 



THE CHURCH VISIBLE AND INVISIBLE. 

These terms, says Dr. Knapp, have come into use since the 
Reformation. But the thing itself which is intended by these 
terms is well supported, and is as ancient as the Christian 
Church itself, and was acknowledged as true by Christ and 
the apostles, and the whole early Church. These terms came 
into use in the following way : — Luther denied that the Romish 
Church, according to the doctrine and polity which it then 
professed, is the true Church. It was then asked, Where then 
was the true Church be/ore him? To which he answered 
that it was invisible — i. e., before the Reformation those 
Christians had constituted the true Church, and held the pure 
doctrine, who, without regarding the authority and command- 



32 MARKS OF A TRUE CHURCH. 

merit of men, had followed the Scriptures according to their 
own views, had lived piously, and kept themselves free from 
the errors of the public religion ; and such persons there always 
had been, even at the most corrupt periods, although they 
had not always been known. It was from this just observa- 
tion that this division arose. (Cf. Confess. August., Art. vii. 
and viii., and Apol. A. C) Protestants understand by the 
invisible Church true Christians, who not only know the pre- 
cepts of Christ, but from the heart obey them, Matt. vii. 21. 
This Church is not always clearly seen : indeed, to speak 
justly, it is known only to God, Col. iii. 3 ; while from the 
eyes of men, who judge only according to the external appear- 
ance, it is wholly concealed. On the contrary, the visible 
Church consists of all who by profession belong externally to 
the Church — i. e., attend public worship, partake of the 
sacraments, etc. ; for wherever the Christian doctrine is pro- 
claimed, and the rites prescribed by it are observed, there the 
visible Church is. Not every one, therefore, who belongs to 
the visible Church, even if it be one of the best, does on this 
account belong also to the invisible Church. For in the visible 
Church there are often wicked men and hypocrites. This is 
not, then, a division generis in species, but cadem res di verso 
respectu The same is true with respect to other societies — 
e. g., the republic of the learned. 



Nashville, Tenn. ; Published by E. Slevensou & F. A. Owen, for the M. E. Church, South. 



No. 26. 



THE SUPREMACY OF THE POPE 

WITHOUT FOUNDATION IN THE WORD OF GOD. 



It is our object to prove that the alleged supremacy of the 
pope, and his claim to be Christ's vicar on earth, are without 
foundation in the word of God. 

Roman Catholics tell us that there is a visible head of the 
Church on earth : that this dignity was first delegated by 
Christ to Peter, as the chief apostle and first bishop of Rome, 
and after him to all his successors in that see : that the bishop 
of Rome, or the pope, has the whole episcopate vested in him- 
self, and from him all other bishops derive their authority : 
that he has dominion over the whole Christian world : that all 
Christians are bound to submit to him; and that those who 
refuse to do so are heretics, and are exposed to damnation. 
In the Lateran council it was decreed, " That the Roman 
high priest holds a primacy over the universal Church, as suc- 
cessor of St. Peter, prince of the apostles : that he is the true 
lieutenant of Christ, and head of the Church, the father and 
doctor of all Christians, to whom all power is committed to 
feed, direct, and govern the Catholic Church under Christ." 
Every Romish bishop, on his appointment, swears thus : "To 
be faithful and obedient to St. Peter and to the holy Roman 
Church, and our Lord the pope his successor, to receive and 
execute his commands, to discover all plots and conspiracies 
against him, to preserve and defend the royalties of St. Peter 
to the utmost of my power, and to persecute and oppose all 
heretics, schismatics, and rebels to our said sovereign lord and 
his successors."* And it is written in the creed of Pope Pius 
IV., one of the acknowledged standards of the Romish faith 

* Pontificate Romanum, pp. 59-61. Antverpiae, 1627; and page 
88, Edit. Paris, 1664. 



2 THE SUPREMACY OE THE POPE 

and to which every priest of Koine swears his adherence — " 1 
promise and swear true obedience to the Roman bishop, the 
successor of St. Peter, the prince of the apostles, and the 
vicar of Jesus Christ." 

To support these formidable claims, there are three points 
assumed: 1st, the supremacy of St. Peter; 2dly, his resi- 
dence at Rome in the character of its bishop, and as universal 
bishop also; and 3dly, the transmission of his power to those 
who occupied the same station after him. 

First, it is asserted, that there is scriptural evidence to show 
that Peter was the chief of the apostles, and that Christ gave 
him spiritual supremacy over the Church. The texts ad- 
duced in support of this opinion are as follows : (Matt. xvi. 
18,) " I say unto thee, That thou art Peter, and upon this 
rock I will build my Church; and the gates of hell shall not 
prevail against it." 

"The name Peter (says Dr. Wiseman) signifies a rock, foj 
in the language spoken on this occasion by our Saviour there 
is not the slightest difference even at this day between the 
name whereby the apostle or any bearing the name is known, 
and the most ordinary word which indicates a rock or [let the 
reader mark the admission] stone. Thus the phrase of the 
lledeemer would sound as follows, to the ears of his audience : 
'And I say to thee, Thou art a rock.' Now see how the rp- 
maining part of the sentence would run in connection with 
the preamble, 'And upon this rock I will build my Church/ 
etc. Such is the first prerogative bestowed upon Peter: he is 
declared to be the rock whereon the impregnable Church is 
founded."— Lecture viii., 265, 266. 

Now, the cardinal prelate has sworn, like all other ecclesi- 
astics of his Church, to interpret Scripture " according to the 
unanimous sense of the fathers;"* and yet, in making the 
statement which we have just quoted, he actually attacks 
what is the interpretation of the most eminent fathers. For 
instance — 

Jerome says, " The Catholic Church is founded with a firm 
root upon the rock Christ." — Ad. Princ. Virq., torn. iii. p. 
178. J r 

Cyprian says, "Christ himself is the rock." — K r ht. 03. 



* See Creed of Pope Pius IV. 



WITHOUT FOUNDATION. 3 

Chrysostom : " He did not say, upon Peter, for he did not 
found his Church upon a man, but upon faith. What, there- 
fore, meant, Upon this rock 1 — upon the confession contained 
in his words." — Sermon on Pentecost, "vol. vi. p. 233. 

Origen : " But if you think that the whole Church is built 
by God upon Peter only, what will you say of John and of each 
of the apostles ? Shall we dare to say that the gates of hell 
were not to prevail against Peter in particular, and that they 
should prevail against the rest of the apostles ?" — Comm. on 
Matt. xvi. 

Cyril of Alexandria: "When Christ said this, he called, I 
think, the immovable and firm faith of the disciple, the rock 
upon which the Church of Christ was founded without the pos- 
sibility of falling." — Dial. iv. on Holy Trin., vol. v. 509. 

Ambrose : " Faith, therefore, is the foundation of the 
Church ; for it was not said of the flesh of Peter, but of his 
faith, that the gates of hell shall not prevail against it." — On 
the Incarnation, chap. v. p. 711. 

Hilary : " The building of the Church, therefore, is upon 
this rock of his confession. This faith is the foundation of 
the Church." — On the Trinity, book vi. 

Augustin : "Jesus said not, Thou art the rock ; but, Thou 
art Peter. The rock was Christ, whom Peter confessed." — 
Aug. Ret. i. 21. 

Nay, that the foundation of the Church was Christ or Peter's 
confession, was maintained by no less than forty-four fathers 
and doctors of the Church; and the same interpretation was 
sanctioned by fifteen popes, and by the general councils of 
Nice, Constantinople, Basil, and the Lateran.* And yet the 
Romish cardinal, though he condemns private judgment in 
the examination of Scripture as a Protestant heresy, yet is 
himself guilty of that heresy ; while he has sworn to inter- 
pret Scripture according to the unanimous sense of the fathers, 
he contradicts the opinions which the most illustrious of them 
have given, and insinuates that the opinion held by so many 
of the fathers is a Protestant invention, a device, and subter- 
fuge, betraying the shifts to which the opponents of the Ca- 
tholic religion are compelled to resort !"j* 

* Vide Labbeus, Hist. Concil. viii. 770, 1268 ; x. 5, 29 ; xvii. 692. 
821 ; xx. 332. Edgar's Variations of Popery, pp. 135, 137. 

f Joannes de Ragusio declared before the Council of Trent, with 



4 THE SUPREMACY OF THE POPE 

We ask Roman Catholics, Would it not be better for you 
to maintain the right of reading the Scripture for yourselves, 
with earnest prayer for the promised light of the Holy Ghost, 
than to give yourselves blindfold into the hands of men who 
tell you to hear the Church, and who give you the judgment 
of the Church after such a fashion as this '( 

Moreover, "what saith the Scripture" on this subject? In 
Psalm cxviii. 22, 23, it is written, "The stone which the 
builders refused is become the head stone of the corner. This 
is the Lord's doing: it is marvellous in our eyes." Again, 
in Isaiah xxviii. 1(3, " Behold, I lay in Zion for a foundation 
a stone, a tried stone, a precious corner stone, a sure founda- 
tion." Now, is it not remarkable that Peter should be the 
apostle who refers to both these prophecies, and applies them 
not to himself, but to the Lord Jesus Christ ? Thus we find 
that, in addressing the Jewish Sanhedrim, he said, " This is 
the stone" (speaking of Christ) "which was set at nought 
of you builders, which is become the head of the corner," 
Acts iv. 11, evidently referring to Psalm cxviii. 22. And in 
his first Epistle, (chap, ii.,) he speaks of Christ thus: " If so 
be ye have tasted that the Lord is gracious. To whom com- 
ing, as unto a living stone, disallowed, indeed, of men, but 
chosen of God, and precious, ye also, as lively stones, are 
built up a spiritual house, a holy priesthood, to offer up spi- 
ritual sacrifices, acceptable to God by Jesus Christ. Where- 
fore also it is contained in the Scripture, Behold, I lay in Zion 
a chief corner stone, elect, precious ; and he that believeth on 
him shall not be confounded." Surely Peter's testimony 
ought to settle the controversy; and were he now upon earth, 
he would reject with abhorrence the doctrine which dishonors 
and robs of his glory the Master whom he loved. 

Further, Scripture declares that, " Other foundation can no 
man lay than that is laid, which is Jesus Christ." (1 Cor. 
iii. 11.) And believers are described as "built upon the 
foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ himself 
being the chief corner stone ;* in whom all the building fitly 

out any dissent, that " the Church was buildcd on the living stone the 
Divine, rock," (quoted by VA^-.xr, p. 137.) 

* '■ I'aitli in Christ being Mint wherein wo are joined to him, it may 
lie called by the same name; :uid accordingly the Colossians are said 
to be ' grounded (Col. i. 1<\) in the faith,' as \ipon a foundation from 



WITHOUT FOUNDATION. 5 

framed together groweth unto a holy temple in the Lord/' 
(Eph. ii. 20, 21.) And if, after all this testimony, in direct 
opposition to the doctrine of the Church of Rome, the supre- 
macy of Peter shall still be maintained, and he shall still be 
asserted to be the true rock on which the Church is built, and 
against which the gates of hell shall not prevail, we can only 
say, in the words of Moses, " Their rock is not as our Rock, 
even our enemies themselves being judges." (Deut. xxxii. 31.)* 

The second text, which is quoted in this controversy in 
proof of the papal supremacy, is found in Matt. xvi. 19 : 
"And I will give unto thee the keys of the kingdom of hea- 
ven ; and whatsoever thou shalt bind on earth shall be bound 
in heaven ; and whatsoever thou shalt loose on earth shall be 
loosed in heaven." Accordingly, Dr. Wiseman declares that 
" The second prerogative of St. Peter is the holding of the 
keys, and the power of making decrees which shall be neces- 
sarily ratified in heaven."-!- And Cardinal Bellarmine, in 
arguing on this passage of Scripture, says, " Peter had spe- 
cial jurisdiction given him over the rest;" and that "to whom 
the keys of a city are delivered, he is appointed the king or 
at least the governor of that city to admit or shut out whom 
he pleaseth."| 

By the "kingdom of heaven," in this passage, we are to 
understand, according to its general meaning in the Grospels, 
the kingdom of grace set up in the hearts of men, that dis- 
pensation which Jesus Christ established upon earth ; and by 

which, he would not have them removed. And the apostles being the 
preachers of this faith, and the instruments whereby men were brought 
to believe on Christ, and so joined to him as living stones, are called 
by the name of foundation in the place so mentioned. (Eph. ii. 20.) 
But then it is evident that Peter alone is not the foundation, but all 
the apostles. For there are. twelve foundations of this sort, (as we 
read in Rev. xxi. 14,) by whose ministry the Church was built upon 
Christ, the sole foundation, in proper speaking, that was laid for all 
to build upon." (Bishop Patrick's Texts examined which Papist's 
quote out of the Bible, in " Gibson's Preservative.") 

* Those fathers and Protestants who refer the "rock," in Matt, 
xvi. 18, to Peter, understand by it the fundamental character of his 
ministry, as indicated in the following verse. But this, in effect, 
amounts to the common interpretation : the Church is built upon the 
ministry of Peter — not, however, apart from that of the other apostles 
—who recognized Christ alone as the sure foundation. — Editor. 

f Lect. viii. J De Pontif. Lib. i. 



(5 THE SUPREMACY OF THE POrE 

the "keys" of this kingdom is meant the power of making 
known the truth, and of exercising spiritual government and 
discipline in the Church. And when Christ said to Peter, 
" Whatsoever thou shalt bind on earth shall be bound in hea- 
ven ; and whatsoever thou shalt loose on earth shall be loosed 
in heaven," he gave him not only the power of declaring, ac- 
cording to the revealed will of God, the character of those 
who were to be excluded from the communion of the saints, 
or who were to be admitted to their fellowship, but, in con- 
nection with this, the power of excommunication from the 
Church on the one hand, and of the restoration of the peni- 
tent on the other. If it be urged that this implies a supre- 
macy given to Peter, we reply, first, that by the words ad- 
dressed to Peter is implied, not a superiority over his brethren, 
but a priority in the order of ministration : he being the per- 
son who first, in point of time, opened the kingdom to the 
Jews by preaching to them on the day of Pentecost, and to 
the Gentiles by preaching to Cornelius. Secondly, that what- 
ever power of the keys was now given to him was conferred 
also upon all the apostles For in Matt, xviii. 18, Christ ad- 
dressed them thus : "Verily, I say unto you, [not, unto thee,] 
Whatsoever ye shall bind on earth shall be bound in heaven ; 
and whatsoever ye shall loose on earth shall be loosed in hea- 
ven." And again, in John xx. 21-23, " Then said Jesus to 
them again, Peace be unto you : as my Father hath sent me, 
oven so send I you. And when he had said this, he breathed 
on them, and saith unto them, Receive ye the Holy Ghost. 
A V hose soever sins ye remit, they are remitted unto them; and 
whose soever sins ye retain, they are retained." Here, then, 
there was no supremacy given to Peter : the power given to 
him was equally shared by all the apostles, and is virtually the 
same which is to be exercised in the Church in every age of 
the world. Here, also, the unanimous sense of the fathers 
and early Church is completely opposed to the interpretation 
of Dr. AViscman and modern Komanists. " The keys convey- 
ing the power of binding and loosing, of remitting and re- 
taining sin, were, according to the ancients and many moderns, 
given to all the apostles and to all Christians who belong to the 
ecclesiastical community. This has been shown beyond al) 
question by the warmest friends of the papacy, such as Dupin, 
Calmct, JMaldonul, and Alexander. The proof of the dona- 



WITHOUT FOUNDATION. 7 

tion of the keys to the whole apostolic college, and to the 
whole Christian commonwealth, has been collected by Dupin 
and Maldonat. The Sorbonnist and the Jesuit declare the 
unanimity of the ancients in this opinion. Dupin for this ex- 
position Instances the saints, Cyprian, Jerome, Ambrosius, 
Augustin, Leo, Fulgentius, and the fathers Tertullian, Op- 
tatus, Gaudentius, Theophylact, Eucharius, Beda, Rabban, 
Hincmar, and Odo. Maldonat specifies for the same interpre- 
tation the names of Chrysostom, Ambrosius, Origen, and 
Theophylact. Calmet for this opinion enumerates Cyprian, 
Augustin, Origen, and Theophylact; while Alexander men- 
tions Origen, Hilary, Ambrosius, and Augustin. The system, 
therefore, whj^h is now deprecated by the Italian school of 
Eomanism, was patronized by the whole sainthood from Cyprian 
to Chrysostom/'* 

The next passage quoted in proof of the supremacy of St. 
Peter, is John xxi. 15-17 : " So when they had dined, Jesus 
saith to Simon Peter, Simon, son of Jonas, lovest thou me 
more than these ? He saith unto him, Yea, Lord, thou 
knowest that I love thee. He saith unto him, Feed my 
lambs. He saith to him again the second time, Simon, son 
of Jonas, lovest thou me ? He saith unto him, Yea, Lord, 
thou knowest that I love thee. He saith unto him, Feed my 
sheep. He saith unto him the third time, Simon, son of 
Jonas, lovest thou me ? Peter was grieved because he saith 
unto him the third time, Lovest thou me ? And he said unto 
him, Lord, thou knowest all things : thou knowest that I love 
thee. Jesus saith unto him, Feed my sheep/' " To the two 
ample powers given here, [referring to Matt. xvi. 18, 19, al- 
ready considered,] we must add (says Dr. Wiseman) a third 
distinguished mission conferred upon him after the resurrec- 
tion, when Jesus three times asked him for the pledge of a 
love superior to that of the other apostles, and three times 
gave him a charge to feed his entire flock, his lambs and his 
sheep."*j" Many readers will be surprised when they are told 
by Romish doctors that by the " lambs'' in this passage we 
are to understand the laity, and by the "sheep," the clergy; 
and that the office of feeding both lambs and sheep — both 
laity and clergy — was intrusted to Peter as the supreme head 

* Edgar's Variations, p. 140. f Lect. viii. p. 267. 



8 THE SUPREMACY OF THE POPE 

of the Church. But what are the facts of the case ? Peter 
had denied his Lord the Christ : he had fallen, he had vir- 
tually excommunicated himself, when with oaths and curses 
he said, " I know not the man/' But his Lord looked upon 
him ; and his look of love melted his heart into penitence, 
and opened the fountain of godly sorrow. And now, in his 
tender compassion, his blessed Master was about formally to 
restore him to his office as pastor of Christ's flock : hence the 
question, thrice repeated, " Simon, son of Jonas, lovest thou 
me more than these ?" which is in so strange a manner per- 
verted by the Romish Church. These words, "more than 
these," we are told, imply that he was to have more power, 
and therefore he was to have more love. But, instead of this, 
Christ pointed at his former boastful confidence, when he said, 
" Though all men shall be offended at thee, yet will I never 
be offended." That spirit of self-reliance — that egotism (so 
to speak) — so characteristic of Peter, and which led to his 
fall, required correction : it was like an arrow to his conscience 
when Christ said, u Lovest thou me more than these ?" — thou 
that didst say, " Though all men shall be offended, yet will I 
never be offended." Lovest thou me more than these ? " Feed 
my sheep," and " Feed my lambs." By the words " feed," 
etc., he simply restored to him that pastoral office which he 
had lost, with an affecting allusion to his fall. Before he fell, 
Jesus saw his danger, and said, " I have prayed for thee, that 
thy faith fail not" — that is, may not finally fail. He said, 
also, " When thou art converted, strengthen thy brethren." 
When, therefore, the Lord addresses to him the command, 
<< Feed my lambs," it is just as if he had said — " Remember- 
ing how thou hast been tempted, and how thou hast proved so 
weak, sympathize in thy future career with young, and weak, 
and tempted, and afflicted disciples, and comfort the feeblest 
of Christ's flock with the comfort wherewith thou thyself art 
comforted of Cod." And when he said, "Feed my sheep," 
and " Feed my lambs," as a whole flock is composed of sheep 
and Jambs under a shepherd's care, so he tells him, as a good 
minister of Jesus Christ, to do the work of a pastor to the 
Church of God. ^ For surely this was nothing more than the 
ordinary commission given to the ministers of the Church, in 
fulfilment of the prophecy, " I will give you pastors according 
to mine heart, which shall feed you with knowledge and urn 



WITHOUT FOUNDATION. 9 

derstanding." (Jer. iii. 15.) It was the commission which 
was given to the Presbyters of the Church at Ephesus, when 
Paul said, " Take heed unto yourselves, and to all the flock, 
[both sheep and lambs,] over the which the Holy Ghost hath 
made you overseers, to feed the Church of God, which he 
hath purchased with his own blood." (Acts xx. 28.) Nay, 
let Peter again be a witness. Hear what he says in the fifth 
chapter of his first epistle : " The elders which are among you 
I exhort, who am also an elder, and a witness of the sufferings 
of Christ, and also a partaker of the glory that shall be re- 
vealed : feed the flock of God which is among you, taking the 
oversight thereof, not by constraint, but willingly; not for 
filthy lucre, but of a ready mind; neither as being lords 
over God's heritage, but being ensamples to the flock. And 
when the chief Shepherd shall appear, [he does not call him- 
self, but Christ, the chief Shepherd,] ye shall receive a crown 
of glory that fadeth not away." And when, finally, we are 
told that the "lambs" were the laity, and the "sheep" were 
the clergy, Peter being constituted governor of both, surely it 
is impossible to look at such an interpretation without at once 
seeing its absurdity.* Does not every child know that a flock 
consists of both sheep and lambs ? Are not the " sheep" evi- 
dently mature and advanced believers, "the lambs" the young, 
the feeble disciples ? And is not the Christian pastor com- 
missioned to feed both? If the "lambs" mean the laity, and 
the "sheep" the clergy, then as the lambs in process of time 
grow into sheep, so the laity at a certain age must all be 
turned into clergy ! The argument does not deserve to be 
dealt with seriously : it only excites a smile of pity for the 
system which attempts to erect on such a foundation a super- 
structure of oppression and error. 

II. Having disposed of these passages so ostentatiously put 
forth, and so constantly quoted and relied upon by the abettors 
of papal supremacy, let us, in the next place, show that Peter 
was only an equal among his brethren the apostles, and neither 
claimed nor exercised any superiority. 

First, our Lord's own supremacy as the king and head of 
the Church, standing forth in solitary grandeur and glory, for- 



* Bellarmine gravely declares that "the bishops are the ewes or 
mothers to the lambs." (De R. Pontif. cap. 16.) 
3 



10 THE SUPREMACY OF THE POPE 

bids the idea of a second head of the Church, whose existence 
would be a usurpation of the claims of Him who is "King in 
Zion," Head of the Church, " Head over all things to the 
Church/' and who in all things must have the preeminence. 
In the next place, we read in Matt, xxiii. 8-10, " But be not 
ye called Rabbi ; for one is your Master, even Christ j and 
all ye are brethren. And call no man your father upon the earth : 
for one is your Father, which is in heaven. Neither be ye 
called masters ; for one is your Master, even Christ." We 
ask, How could Christ have spoken in such unqualified terms 
against the assumption of preeminence by any of the apostles, 
if, by the language of Matthew, chap, xvi., he had made Peter 
the master of them all? Why tell them to call no man 
father, when he had but a short time before made one man 
" pope" or " father ?" 

When, again, the two sons of Zebedee ambitiously aspired, 
the one to sit at the right hand, and the other at the left hand 
of Christ when he came into his kingdom, while the other 
disciples were moved with indignation, (Matt. xx. 24,) why 
did not Peter or his brethren make reference tohis primacy, 
thus presumptuously trodden upon and set aside? Surely 
such pretensions could not have been entertained for a moment 
by these two brethren, had it been a recognized fact that Peter, 
a short time before, had been made their pope, their primate, 
their spiritual head !* 

Again, we find that there was a dispute amongst the dis- 
ciples, as recorded in Mark ix. 35, as to which of them should 
be greatest ; when we read, that Christ " sat down, and called 
the twelve, and saith unto them, If any man desire to be 
first, the same shall be last of all, and servant of all." Again, 
after Christ had eaten the passover with his disciples, a simi- 
lar contention arose, and was rebuked in the same spirit : 
"And there was a strife among them, which of them should 
be accounted the greatest. And he said unto them, The kings 
of the Gentiles exercise lordship over them ; and they that 
exercise authority upon them are called benefactors. But ye 
shall not be so ; but he that is greatest among you, let him be 

* " None <>f the apostles imagined He had promised the supremacy 
to Peter by these words, 'Thou art Peter,' for then neither would 
these two persons have desired it, nor would the rest have contended 
for it afterwards." Luke xxii. 24. (Whitby on Matt. xx. 20-28.) 



WITHOUT FOUNDATION. 11 

as the younger ; and lie that is chief, as he that doth serve." 
(Luke xxii. 24-27.) It is impossible that any such disputes, 
as to which was the greatest, could have arisen amongst the 
apostles, if Peter had been already invested with supreme 
authority. If Peter had been previously established by 
Christ as prince of the apostles, the language which he now 
used would have been a necessary degradation of him, his 
newly appointed "vicar," to a level with his brethren. 

Further, after the resurrection and ascension of Christ, there 
is no evidence that any act of supremacy was ever exercised 
by Peter over the other apostles. In the election of deacons, 
as recorded in Acts vi., it is said, " The twelve [not Peter] 
called the multitude of the disciples unto them, and said, It 
is not reason that we should leave the word of Grod, and serve 
tables." The disciples chose men, "whom they set before 
the apostles ; and when they had prayed, they laid their hands 
on them." In Acts xv., we find that some matters of dis- 
pute among the churches were referred to the apostles and 
elders and brethren at Jerusalem. Peter was one of the 
speakers at this assembly : Paul and Barnabas gave their sen- 
timents also ; but James presided over the assembly, summed 
up its decision, and concluded with the words, " My sentence 
is," — and so on. Now, is it credible, that if Peter was su- 
preme — if he was the pope, the chief of the apostles — if he 
was the visible head of the Church — he should, on such an 
occasion as this, the first synod of the New Testament Church 
which was constituted, appear there only as a member of the 
court, and that another apostle should preside, and should give 
the sentence ? Surely it follows that a visible personal head was 
not necessary for the settlement of points of doctrine or dis- 
cipline, and that if such a head was required, Peter was not 
that head. 

We find, moreover, that the primitive Church, in its treat- 
ment of Peter, dealt with him simply as another apostle, as 
an equal, and not a superior. The pope sends legates to 
transact the business of the Church, while he remains at home, 
in what he is pleased to call " St. Peter's chair ;"* and as Peter, 



* Romanists confidently maintain that the chair so called was 
really occupied by St. Peter, as the prince of the apostles, and the 
first pope. In Lady Morgan's "Italy," vol. ii., we find the following 



12 THE SUPREMACY OF THE POPE 

the first of the popes, would unquestionably be the greatest 
of them all, is it not strange that ho did not stay at home on 
his "throne," and send his servants, the other apostles, to 
any part of the world which required their presence, rather 
than be sent by them ? But in Acts viii. 14, we read, "Now 
when the apostles which were at Jerusalem heard that Samaria 
had received the word of God, they sent unto them Peter and 
John." These facts are incompatible with the notions enter- 
tained by Romanists, that Peter was the chief of the apostles, 
and the head of the Church. The pope sends, hut is not sent 
by any. 

Again, the Apostle Paul, who was one of the humblest of 
men, who declared that he was "less than the least of all 
saints," and "the chief" of sinners, who was by no means 
disposed unduly to exalt himself, and strenuously preached 
submission to spiritual rulers, emphatically declared, (2 Cor. 
xi. 5,) that he "was not a whit behind the very chiefest 
apostles." Could he possibly have said this, if it were not 
true ? And how could it be true if Peter was his prince ? 
What ! the holy, humble Paul, to declare that he was not a 
whit behind the vicar of Christ, the viceregent of God, the 
supreme ruler of the Church on earth ! Let Roman Catho- 
lics only reflect : suppose any cardinal or bishop to declare, in 
a public document, that he was not a whit behind the chief 
pastor or pope himself: what would be thought of him? Is 
not the conclusion, then, evident that there was no difference 



passage: "The sacrilegious character of the French broke through 
all obstacles to men seeing the chair of St. Peter. They actually re- 
moved its superb casket and discovered the relic. Upon its moulder- 
ing and dusty surface were traced carvings which bore the appearance 
of letters. The chair was quickly brought into another light, the 
dust and cobwebs removed, and the inscription (for inscription it was) 
faithfully copied. The writing is in Arabic characters, and is the 
well-known confession of tho Mohammedan faith: 'There is but one 
God, and Mohammed is his prophet.' " Cardinal Wiseman has denied 
the truth of this statement. Lady Morgan reiterates her statement, 
and gives the authority of Donon and Champollion, the two eminent 
French naturalists. Dcnon declares that he saw the chair and the 
inscription. Kindred to this imposture was the exhibition at Home, 
in the ninth century, of two large silver keys, to which the people 
paid adoration, being assured they were the very keys which Christ 
had given to St. Peter! (Pictet. Theol. Chret. tome ii. p. 425.) 



WITHOUT FOUNDATION. 13 

of rank among the apostles ? Observe, Paul does not say, 
" the chief apostle" — using the singular number — which he 
must have done, had Peter been above all the rest ; but he 
refers to Peter, John, and James, who, in Gral. ii. 9, are called 
" pillars" of the Church. Moreover, Paul says (Gral. ii. 11) that 
he withstood Peter to the face, because he was to be blamed. 
Here, if Peter was supreme, we have one of the best of men 
actually at war with his master, and rebelling against his spi- 
ritual head and sovereign. 

And here, reminded as we are of Peter's faults, may we 
not ask, "What reason was there why the Lord Jesus should 
bestow a supremacy upon him rather than upon any other 
apostle?" "I think (says an eminent writer*) if deserts be 
weighed, Peter deserved no more than the rest of Christ's 
followers. Nay, I think the wisdom of the Spirit, foreseeing 
the questions which should afterwards arise in the Church 
about Peter, hath so disposed that his faults, both in number 
more, and in weight greater, than any of the rest, should be 
evidently set forth in Scripture." Was it nothing to depre- 
cate the Saviour's death upon the cross, and thereby make 
himself an "adversary" (as the word "Satan" signifies) to 
the redemption of the Church of God? (Matt. xvi. 22,23.) Was 
it nothing, when Christ foretold his fall, that, instead of trem- 
lingly imploring from his Master grace and strength, he 
should, " not only unadvisedly, but almost impiously,"^ say, 
" Though all men shall be offended because of thee, yet will 
I never be offended ? (Matt. xxvi. 33.) And was not the sin in- 
deed aggravated, when three times, and within a brief period, 
he said, with oaths and curses, " I know not the man !" (Matt, 
xxvi. 74.) Grod forbid that we should seek to cast dishonor on 
the memory of one who, cured of his besetting sins of rash- 
ness and " the fear of man wherewith cometh a snare/' lived 
to testify with great " boldness" (Acts iv. 13, 19, 20) for his 
Lord and Master, and who, there is reason to believe, died 
a martyr for him. We only refer to these failings of the 
Apostle Peter to check that preposterous zeal which ascribes 
to Peter what he never thought of assuming, and which has 
even dared to extenuate^ a crime, the blackness of which the 

* Willet, p. 157. 

f Augustin Tractate 25 in Matt. 

j " Some men may excuse Peter by saying that he did nothing 1ml 



14 THE SUPREMACY OF THE POPE 

blood of Jesus only could cleanse, and over whose enormity 
he himself "wept bitterly." (Matt. xxvi. 75.) 

We conclude, then, without hesitation, from the whole re- 
view of Scripture testimony with regard to Peter and the 
other apostles, that his alleged primacy was never established 
by Christ, never claimed by himself, and never recognized by 
his contemporaries. 

And as to the " fathers," (whom Roman Catholics are taught 
so profoundly to reverence,) they assert in express terms that 
all the apostles are to be coordinate in power and authority. 
St. Cyprian says, " The other apostles were, that which Peter 
was, invested with an equality of honor and power." St. 
Chrysostoni says that St. Paul showeth that each apostle did 
enjoy equal honor and dignity, Gal. ii. 8 ; and comparing St. 
Paul to St. Peter, he calls St. .Paul, " taoTtfiog avT(x>," equal 
in honor to him. St. Cyril, Jerome, Dionysius, Isidore, and 
all the fathers of the first 300 years, use the same language.* 

III. In the next place, let us show that there is no Scrip- 
ture evidence that Peter was bishop of Rome at all. Roman- 
ists tell us that Peter was first bishop of Antioch : that he 
afterwards removed to Rome, where he continued for a space 
of twenty-five years. 

We remark, in the first place, that it is absurd to suppose 
an apostle to have been a bishop — that is, the pastor, or over- 
seer, or presiding ruler of a particular church, or district, or 
diocese, because constant residence in one place was contrary 
to the commission given to the apostles. They were appointed 
to be "witnesses for Christ both in Jerusalem, and in all 
Judea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the 
earth." (Acts i. 8.) They were the property of the Church 
at large j and they would have been guilty of a violation of 
their duty if they had confined their labors to a particular 
part of it. Peter is degraded by the supposition that, being 

as Christ forewarned him. What then? If Peter did not amiss, 
because his fall was foretold, then Judas did well, too, in betraying 
Christ, for this, also, Christ showed before." (Aug. Tract, in Johann. 
66.) "He wept bitterly," his sin was very great. How, then, dare 
one of your sect say, with blasphemous mouth, " Peter denied the failh 
of Christ, but he denied Christ, his faith remaining safe and sound?" 
(Willet, p. 158.) 

* Quoted in Neal's Discourse, p. 19, in Salter's Hall Lectures. 



WITHOUT FOUNDATION. 15 

an apostle, he became pastor and bishop of either Antioch or 
Rome. 

But there is no satisfactory evidence that he was ever 
bishop of Rome. Uncertain traditions and doubtful argu- 
ments will not here avail. If the Lord Jesus Christ had ap- 
pointed Peter bishop of Rome and head of the Church on 
earth, and if it was his intention that all subsequent bishops 
of that see should succeed him in his prerogatives, and that 
Christians in every age should look up to them as their gover- 
nors and guides, we might reasonably expect that the fact on 
which such a mighty superstructure is reared would be clearly 
made known in Scripture. On that subject, however, it pre- 
serves a profound silence. Romanists appeal, indeed, to a 
verse in the first Epistle of Peter, where he says, " The 
Church which is at Babylon salute you;" and affirm that this 
is Rome, because Rome is called Babylon in the Revelation 
of John, and that consequently Peter was there when he 
wrote. But this is a miserable shift. In the book of Reve- 
lation, where symbolical names and language are employed, 
the name of "Mystery, Babylon the Great," is given to papal 
Rome.* There were two Babylons in Peter's day, one in 
Syria, the other in Egypt, from either of which he might date 
his letter. But the change of the name would be altogether 
improper, in a plain epistle, in which there is no possible rea- 
son for concealment. It is, moreover, decisive against the 
idea that Peter was resident bishop of Rome, that Paul, in his 
epistle to the Christians there, fifteen years after Peter's sup- 
posed translation from Antioch to Rome, sends no salutation 
to Peter. Could this be possible, if he was in Rome as its 
bishop, and the Church's universal head? Again, when 
Paul was a prisoner at Rome, can we believe he would have 
complained, "At my first- answer no man stood with me," if 
Peter had been there ? Others might charge Peter with a 
repetition of his act of cowardice, but far be it from us to do 
so. He was cured of that sin, as was shown by " the bold- 
ness of Peter and John" before the council, immortalized in 
the sacred page. (Acts iv. 13.) The man who said, in the 
presence of danger and death, "We cannot but speak the 

* For convincing proof of this, see "Is the Church of Rome the Baby- 
lon of the Book of Revelation?" By C. Wordsworth, D.D. London- 
Rivingtons. 



16 THE SUPREMACY OF THE POPE 

things that we have seen and heard" — the man who sniil, 
" It Is Letter to obey God rather than man," — that man would 
have died with Paul rather than have forsaken him. "When 
Paul, therefore, said, "At my first answer no man stood with 
me, but all men forsook me : I pray God that it may not be 
laid to their charge," we are persuaded Peter was not at Rome 
at nil. Paul remained there two whole years, wrote several 
epistles from that city, mentioned to the Colossians (iv. 10, 
11) the names of others who " were alone his fellow-workers/' 
but never Peter's name. In the epistles of the apostles James 
and Judc, there is not a single allusion to Peter, nor any that 
can be pressed into, the service of his supposed supremacy. 
The apostle John lived forty years longer than Peter, yet 
neither in his epistles, nor in "the book of the Revelation," 
do we find one word about the apostolic chair. But accord- 
ing to the doctrine of Peter's supremacy, the apostle John 
owed allegiance to the see of Rome. Coupling this with the 
fact already mentioned — that an apostle's commission was as 
wide as the world — even though it may be true, as dim tra- 
dition might indicate, that towards the close of his life Peter 
came to Rome, and was martyred, there is no proof whatever 
that he was bishop of what is called the Romish see. 

IV Therefore, we maintain, finally, that there is no evi- 
dence that his supposed plenary authority was transferred by 
Peter to the bishops of Rome. Even if it were granted that 
St. Peter was bishop of Rome, and the supreme head of the 
Church, the possession of that supremacy terminated with 
himself. Rut the office of an earthly vicar, and supreme 
pontiff, was never claimed by Peter, who simply called him- 
self, when writing to ministers, "an elder," or, literally, "a 
fellow-elder." (1 Pet. v. 1.) As an apostle, one who had 
" seen the Lord," and had received his commission as well as 
the power of working miracles immediately from him, he 
could have no successor.* How unfounded, therefore, the as- 
sertion of the Catechism of the Council of Trent, "that it is 
evident by the unanimous consent of the fathers, and the tra- 
ditions of the Church in all ages, that the commission given 
to St. Peter descended to the popes or bishops of Rome." 
The history of the first three centuries is entirely silent on 

* See Barrow's unanswerable Treatise on "The Supremacy." 



WITHOUT FOUNDATION. 17 

the subject. It has been shown by Archbishop Usher, in his 
celebrated "Answer to a Jesuit/' that documents have been 
actually forged to support the cause of the Church of Rome, 
and to establish the supremacy of Peter. Here are the words 
of Usher : 

" ' Before the Council of Nice/ it hath been observed by 
iEneas Sylvius, (who sometime was pope himself,) ' little re- 
spect, to speak of, was paid to the Church of Rome/ Epist. 
288. If this may be thought to prejudice the dignity of that 
Church, which would be held to have sat as queen among the 
nations from the very beginning of Christianity, you shall 
have a crafty merchant (Isidorus Mercator, I trow, they call 
him) that will help the matter by counterfeiting decretal 
epistles in the name of the primitive bishops of Rome, and 
bringing in thirty of them in a row, as so many knights of the 
post, to bear witness of that great authority which the Church 
of Rome enjoyed before the Nicene fathers were assembled. 
If the Nicene fathers have not amplified the bounds of her 
jurisdiction in so large a manner as she desired, she hath had 
her well-wishers who have supplied the council's negligence in 
that respect, and made canons for the purpose in the name of 
the good fathers, who never dreamed of such a business. If 
the power of judging all others will not content the pope, 
unless he himself may be exempted from being judged by any 
other, another council, as ancient at least as that of Nice, shall 
be suborned; wherein shall be concluded by the consent of 
284 imaginary bishops, that — i Nemo enim judicabit primam 
sedem,' ' No man may judge the first seat/ (that is, Rome.)" 

A well-known modern writer, distinguished by his candor 
and piety, has thus summed up the proof that the alleged 
transference of Peter's supposed supremacy was utterly un- 
known in the Church in primitive times : " From thirty-three 
years to the end of the first century, no heretic scoffed at the 
successor of Peter : no skeptic expressed his doubts : no 
church asked proof of his primacy : no bishop inquired as to 
the nature and extent of his jurisdiction. The churches 
made no appeal to Peter's successor, nor did he issue any in- 
junction to the churches. No deputations were sent to ex- 
press their homage : no treatises written to guide their loyalty. 
There was no manifesto, no explanation — no encyclical letter 
3* 



18 THE SUPREMACY OE THE POPE 

from Peter's chair. All churches, all bishops, all the world 
were as silent about Peter's episcopate, and the claims of his 
successor, as if Peter had never been at Rome. The second 
century flowed by, and this extraordinary silence was still pro- 
found and universal. The third century came and went, 
before a single bishop broke it. Thirty-two bishops of Rome, 
from Linus and Sylvester, raised to be vicars of Christ, and 
spiritual emperors over all the churches of the world, never 
once offered their credentials, nor mentioned the foundation 
of their author. Owing as they did to Peter's episcopate a 
spiritual empire, compared with which Cassar's was contempt- 
ible, they never proved the fact — never mentioned it — did not 
seem to know it. Thirty-two bishops of Rome, other bishops, 
and thousands of churches in all parts of the world, permitted 
about two centuries to pass after the death of Peter before 
they uttered one syllable to announce that he was bishop of 
the Church of Rome. 

" Plow can we escape from the conclusion that he never was 
its bishop, and that its bishops are no vicars of Christ ? 

" In another aspect, the silence is still more astonishing, on 
the supposition that Peter was bishop of Rome, and that the 
pope, as his successor, is the vicar of Christ. When the Al- 
mighty (who has numbered the hairs of our heads, and orders 
all events, even to the death of a sparrow) raised the Lord 
Jesus Christ from the dead, he took care that a fact so ma- 
terial to us should bo established by the testimony of nume- 
rous eye-witnesses. But now, when the episcopate of Peter 
at Rome was to be determined, (as you say,) the vicar of 
Christ, the emperor of the universal Church, he did not pro- 
vide a single eye-witness : he did not secure any competent 
testimony. He allowed a profound silence respecting it for 
two hundred years, and now requires men, on pain of eternal 
damnation, to become subjects of the bishop of Rome, with- 
out any other proof of their appointment than that furnished 
by the dicta of a remote church in the fourth century, and a 
monk of a foreign convent still later, who do not offer the 
least evidence to support their opinion. To believe this is not 
faith, nor even simple credulity, but to impute to the holy 
God a neglect of which no human government would have 
been guilty, and a severity by which any human government 



WITHOUT FOUNDATION. 19 

would be disgraced. For myself, I find it easier to believe 
that Peter never was bishop of Rome."* 

If the reader asks how it was that the supremacy of the 
pope arose, we shall proceed briefly to explain it. 

By degrees, the spirit of " Diotrephes, who loved to have 
the preeminence," crept in among the ministers of the Church, 
and those who were pastors in large cities came to be regarded 
with greater honor, and to assume greater authority. For a 
considerable time, the city of Rome continued under Pagan 
emperors ; but, as is well known, in the fourth century, Chris- 
tianity became the religion of the state under Constantine. 
The empire was divided into two parts — the eastern, with Con- 
stantinople as its capital ; and the western, with Eome as its 
chief city. The emperors preferred to reside in the eastern 
city, and retired thither with their court. Accordingly, the 
influence of that eastern capital rose ; and the patriarch of 
Constantinople not only began to vie with the bishop of Rome, 
but, by reason of imperial favor, bade fair to become chief 
bishop and head of the universal Church. Against this pre- 
tension and proposal the bishops of Rome protested ; and one 
of them, (Gregory the G-reat,) in a letter on this subject, de- 
clared that he who dared to assume the title of universal 
bishop would be the forerunner of Antichrist; most truly, 
that none of the apostles assumed it, and that it could only be 
thought of by "one who wished to be subject to none, and 
that all might be subject to him. ;; f 

Notwithstanding all such reasoning, however, the emperor 
Mauritius appointed the patriarch of Constantinople universal 
bishop. But, shortly afterwards, this emperor was murdered 
by Phocas : who became emperor, transferred his court to 
Rome, revoked the decree constituting the patriarch of Con- 
stantinople universal bishop, and conferred the title on Boni- 
face III., bishop of Rome, A.D. 607 

Such was the origin of papal supremacy, and thus it was, 

* Letters on the Church of Rome, addressed to the Rev. Emmanuel 
Terant, B.D. Letter I. by the Hon. and Rev. B. W. Noel, M. A. 
Nisbet& Co., 1851. 

j- The words of his final protest were these : "I tell you confidently 
that he who styles himself, or wishes to be styled, universal priest, 
does in his self-exaltation anticipate Antichrist, setting himself in pride 
above his fellows." 



20 THE SUPREMACY OF THE POPE 

that a colossal power arose in Europe, which has again and 
again overtopped the proudest monarchies, released subjects 
from their allegiance, and trodden down with its iron heel the 
religious liberties of a large portion of mankind. Its unscrip- 
tural character and its growing power may be judged of by 
the following brief statement of facts. In the eighth century, 
Pope Gregory II. boasted to the Greek emperor, "All the 
kings of the earth reverence the pope as God." The emperor 
Charlemagne consented to receive his titles and his honors 
from the pope. In the coronation oath of the western em- 
perors, they swore they would be submissive to the popes and 
their Roman successors. The emperors Otho and Randolphus 
both received their imperial crowns as a grant from the pope. 
John of England was compelled humbly to receive his crown as 
the pope's vassal. In A.I). 1155, Pope Adrian IV permitted 
Henry II. of England to subjugate Ireland, on condition of 
his giving a quit-rent to the pope for each house in it. On 
the discovery of America, Prince Henry of Portugal applied 
to the pope to grant to the Portuguese every country they 
might discover. A bull accordingly was issued, granting the 
petition, on the ground that the heathen had been given to 
Christ for his inheritance, and the uttermost parts of the earth 
for his possession. We find Pope Nicholas I. requiring kings 
to hold the bridle of his horse. The Emperor Barbarossa and 
Louis II. of France did so, and up to the sixteenth century, 
monarchs were wont to kiss the pope's feet. The Emperoi 
Henry, having offended the pope, (Hildebrand,) was com- 
pelled to wait three days and three nights in the depth of 
winter barefooted and clothed in sackcloth, in the court-yard 
of the fortress of Canossa, before the proud pontiff would re- 
lent and forgive him. In the year 1191, Pope Celestine kicked 
the crown from the head of the Emperor Henry IV., which 
Baronius the historian says was a sign that the pope had the 
power of deposing, as he alone had the prerogative of making, 
kings. In later times, Pope Pius V issued a bull deposing 
Queen Elizabeth, absolving her subjects from the oath of al- 
legiance, and anathematizing such as continued in their obe- 
dience. In this bull, the ltomish pontiff is declared to have 
been appointed prince over all nations and over all kingdoms, 
to root out, destroy, disperse, plant, and build. 

The canon law is the law of the liomish Church at this day, 



WITHOUT FOUNDATION. 21 

to the teaching of which, (the things delivered, defined, and 
declared by the sacred canons,* etc.) every popish priest 
swears adherence, and for the carrying out of which in Eng- 
land Cardinal Wiseman has declared a change from vicars 
apostolic to a regular hierarchy to be absolutely necessary. 

The following are some of its decrees : " The bishop of 
Rome may excommunicate emperors and princes, depose them 
from their states, and assoil their subjects from their oath and 
obedience to them, and so constrain them to rebellion." "The 
bishop of Rome may give authority to arrest men and im- 
prison them in manacles and fetters." And in strict accord- 
ance with this are the facts of history already alluded to, as 
well as those cruel persecutions which, under papal authority, 
were waged against those who, in different ages, refused to 
recognize the unscriptural claims of the Romish see. We 
need only refer to the bloody crusade against the Waldenses 
and Albigenses, and the establishment of the inquisition, 
both sanctioned by Pope Innocent III. ; the massacre of St. 
Bartholomew in Paris, for which the pope and his cardinal 
gave thanks at St. Peter's; the massacre of the Protestants 
in Ireland, which Pope Urban VIII. had instigated and en- 
couraged by a bull, offering indulgence to all who would assist 
in the work of exterminating heretics. Is this the religion of 
Him who "came not to destroy men's lives, but to save ?" 

We find it clearly taught in Scripture that the day of 
Christ's second advent should not arrive, " except there come 
a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son 
of perdition ; who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that 
is called God, or that is worshipped." (2 Thess. ii. 3, 4.) We 
have already seen how the papal power has exalted itself, in 
disposing of crowns and kingdoms. But besides this, we find 
that the practical result of " the supremacy of the pope" has 
been to invest him with Divine authority, so that claiming to 
rule the Church of Christ, " He as God sitteth in the temple 
of God," showing himself that he is God, claiming the titles 
and prerogatives which belong to God alone. The canon law 
accordingly declares "the bishop of Rome hath authority to 
judge all men, and specially to judge the articles of faith, 
and that without any council, and may assoil them that the 

* Creed of Pius IV. 



22 THE SUPREMACY OP THE POPE 

council hath damned; but no man hath authority to judge 
him, nor to meddle with any thing that he hath judged, 
neither emperor, king, the people, nor the clergy; and it is not 
lawful for any man to dispute of his power." Again, " the 
bishop of Rome may be judged of none but of God only; for 
although he neither regards his own salvation nor any man's 
else, but draws down with himself innumerable people by 
heaps into hell, yet may no mortal man in this world presume 
to reprehend him ; forasmuch as he is called God, he may not 
he judged of men, for God may be judged of no man." In 
the fourth session of the Lateran council, the Venetian pre- 
late addressed the pope thus : " Thou art our shepherd, our 
physician, in short, alter Deus in terris — another God upon 
earth." 

In an account of the inauguration of Pope Innocent, (pub- 
lished by Dr. Bancke, in Friesland, A.D. 1645, who had wit- 
nessed the ceremony at Rome,) it is stated that Cardinal Co- 
lonna thus addressed the pope: "0 most holy and blessed 
father, head of the Church, ruler of the world, thy holi- 
ness." A medal struck at the mint in the Vatican represents 
Pope Eugenius IV., and on the obverse two cardinals putting 
the tiara on the pontiff's head, with the motto, u Quern creant 
adorn nt" — "Whom they create, him they adore." On another 
medal is represented Innocent III., and a king kneeling at his 
feet with his crown in his hand. The pope is seated in his 
chair in the act cf blessing the discrowned king, and the in- 
scription is, "JEcce, sic henedicetur homo" — " Thus shall man 
be blessed." In the sixth session of the Lateran, A.D. 1514, 
the bishop of Modrusium called the pope the " Lion of the 
tribe of Judah," and said, "Thou shalt reign from sea to sea, 
and from the Tiber to the ends of the earth." "Thou art our 
shepherd, our physician, in short, a second God upon earth." 
In the ninth session of the fifth council of Lateran, Anthony 
Pucci addressed the pope thus : " The sight of thy divine 
majesty does not a little terrify me, for I am not ignorant that 
all power in heaven and earth is given unto thee : that pro- 
phetic saying is now fulfilled, 'All the kings of the earth shall 
worship him, and all nations shall serve him.'" Cardinal 
Bellarmine* declares that " the pope is the father of the faith- 



* In Pontif. Rom. lib. i. 



WITHOUT FOUNDATION. 23 

ful, the pontiff of Christians, prince of priests, vicar of Christ, 
head of the body, foundation of the building, bridegroom of 
the Church." The canon law declares that " the bishop of 
Rome may open and shut heaven unto men/' 

Now, let the Roman Catholic reader compare these titles 
given to the pope with the teachings of Holy Scripture, and 
then say whether he does not blasphemously usurp the honors 
due to G-od and Christ alone. Is the pope called " his holi- 
ness," and styled the "holy father?" these are the names given 
to God. (Isaiah xliii. 15; John xvii. 11.) Is the pope de- 
scribed as the " pontifex maximus," the "great high priest?" 
This is the name peculiar to Christ, the great "High Priest 
of our profession." (Heb. iii. 1.) Is the pope called "the 
husband of the Church," and at "consecration is a ring put 
on his finger, to signify that he is wedded to the Church ?" 
Then this is the usurpation of the place of Christ, who is "the 
Bridegroom;" (John iii. 29;) the Church being "the Lamb's 
wife" (Rev. xxi. 9.) Is the pope called "the good shep- 
herd"* and "the chief shepherd?" Then both titles belong 
to Christ alone. (John x. 14 ; 1 Pet. v. 4.) Does Bellarmine, 
a great Romish authority, tell us that the pope is " The head 
of the body ?" In this he contradicts an apostle who says of 
Christ, "He is the head of the body;" (Col. i. 18;) "The 
head, even Christ." (Eph. iv. 15.) Is the pope styled the 
"foundation of the building?" This is in express opposition 
to the claims of Him who is "the Head of the corner," and 
''the chief Corner stone." (Matt. xxi. 42; Eph. ii. 20.) And 
is not Christ alone called "The Lion of the tribe of Judah?" 
(Rev. v. 5.) Is it not of Him alone that it can be said that 
"he openeth, and no man shutteth; and shutteth, and no 
man openeth?" (Rev. iii. 7) Is not Christ the only one of 
whom it is declared that " He shall have dominion from sea 
to sea, and from the river unto the ends of the earth," and 
that "all kings shall bow down before him — all nations shall 
serve him ?" (Psalm lxxii. 8-10 ;) and yet, as we have seen, 
this authority is ascribed to the pope of Rome. 

But it may be said that such power has been delegated to 

* A bull begins, "Ego pastor bonus," — "I the good shepherd." 
Dr. Wiseman, in announcing a jubilee, March, 1851, calls the pope 
"The chief shepherd." 



2-1 SUPREMACY OF THE POPE WITHOUT FOUNDATION. 

him a,s the "lieutenant" or "vicar of Jesus Christ." We 
have already settled that point, by demonstrating, from Scrip- 
ture and primitive antiquity, that such a delegation was never 
made by Christ either to Peter or the bishops of Rome. A 
pope or " vicar" was not included among those spiritual offi- 
cers who were bestowed by him on his Church when he as- 
cended to heaven. (Eph. iv. 11.) And we find that without 
such a " lieutenant" or " vicar," " the perfecting of the saints" 
is accomplished: all his people "come in the unity of the 
faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of Grod, unto a per- 
fect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of 
Christ. (Eph. iv. 13.) Christ, the true and only Head of the 
Church, is " the Holy One and the Just." (Acts iii. 14.) 
But many of the popes have been very wicked men, and all of 
them weak, mortal, and erring creatures at the best ; of whom, 
in reference to their arrogant pretensions, and their falling one 
by one before the common stroke of death, the language of 
Scripture may well be employed, " I have said, Ye are gods ; 
but ye shall die like men, and fall like one of the princes.'' 
(Psalm lxxxii. 6, 7.) 



Nashville, Tenn. : Published by E. Stevenson & F. A. Owen, for the M. E. Church, South. 



No. 27 



THE EOMISH DOCTRINE OF PENANCE, 

ABSOLUTION, AND INDULGENCES. 



The subjects which we are about to discuss are of no 
secondary interest and no inferior moment, because they 
involve nothing less than the right answers to the questions — 
How shall a man be just with God ? and, What is the solid 
foundation of a sinner's hope for eternity? 

It is necessary that we should clearly ascertain, first of all, 
what is the gospel method of a sinner's justification before 
God, in order that we may be better prepared to contrast with 
this the Romish method of a sinner's pardon and acceptance 
with God. 

I. What is the Scripture doctrine of justification? 

Justification is a forensic term, derived from the practice of 
courts of law; and when we examine Scripture, we find 
that it does not denote the change of a person's disposition, 
but a change of his state in relation to the law, and in rela- 
tion to God himself as the lawgiver. It does not make a 
man righteous by changing his nature j but it declares him 
righteous on valid grounds. So the Hebrew word pTO and 
the Greek dinatoG) are repeatedly used. We read in Deut. 
xxv. 1, " If there be a controversy between men, and they 
come unto judgment, that the judges may judge them; then 
they shall justify the righteous, and condemn the wicked/' 
Here, surely, to " justify the righteous" is not to make him 
righteous, but to pronounce him righteous, for this only is the 
office of a judge. So again, in Prov. xvii. 15, we read, " He 
that justifieth the wicked, and he that condemneth the just, 
even they both are abomination to the Lord." Here again, 
to justify signifies to pronounce the man who was wicked and 
chargeable, to be free from guilt and charge. In the same 



2 ROMISH DOCTRINE OF PENANCE, 

sense David prays, "Enter not into judgment with thy ser 
vant; for in thy sight shall no man living be justified." (Psa. 
cxliii. 2. ) He thus entreats God, as his judge, not to bring 
him to trial, because neither he nor any other person could 
expect a sentence in his favor. In the New Testament the 
term is used with a similar meaning. When, for example, 
"Wisdom" is said to be "justified of her children/' Matt, 
xi. 19, the meaning is, that she is approved and vindicated by 
them, exhibited in her true character, and cleared from the 
aspersion of her enemies. Again, when Christ said to the 
Pharisees, " Ye are they which justify yourselves before men," 
Luke xvi.' 15, he referred to them as self-righteous, eager to 
prove that there was no defect in their obedience. The Publican, 
we are told, " went down to his house justified," Luke xviii. 
14, that is, acquitted and pardoned by God as a judge— that 
God whose mercy he had humbly implored, and which (as 
the Greek word IMaBr^n* implies) he had sought through 
faith in a propitiatory sacrifice. 

But it settles the forensic meaning of the term, in that we 
find it opposed by the apostle Paul to condemnation. " It is 
God," he says, "that justifieth. Who is he that condemn- 
eth ?" (Rom. viii. 33, 34.) Again, the judgment was by one 
to condemnation, but the free gift is of many offences unto 
justification." (Rom. v. 16.) It is, therefore, unnecessary to 
multiply proofs in a matter so abundantly plain. Justification 
is not, as the Council of Trent teaches, a change of nature, 
but of state. We know indeed that the sanctification of a 
sinner is inseparable from his justification, but it is clear that 
the one is perfectly distinct from the other. 

Now, every man being a sinner, the first and great blessing 
which he needs is the change of state which we have now 
described. He stands, with all the world, " guilty before God ;" 
and the remission of sins is secured to him only by faith id 
the blood of Christ. The apostle Paul declares that God 
"hath set forth" his Son "to be a propitiation through faith 
in his blood." (Rom. iii. 25.) Again, in writing to the Kphe- 
sians, chap. i. 7, he says, " In whom we have redemption 
through his blood, lite forgiveness of sins, according to the 
riches of his grace." The " righteousness of God" is "by 

* Literally, "be propitious" — "bo merciful through a sacrifice." 



ABSOLUTION, AND INDULGENCES. 3 

faith of Jesus Christ unto all and upon all them that believe." 
The merit is not in the faith; but faith is the hand that 
receives "the gift of righteousness." A Roman Catholic 
girl once expressed her conviction to the writer that the 
doctrine of justification by faith was the true doctrine 
of the word of God; and when he asked her what it 
was which brought her to this conviction, she opened the 
New Testament, and pointed to this beautiful passage, Rom. 
iii. 19-26, which we earnestly commend to the prayerful 
attention of every reader. 

Abraham himself, "the father of the faithful," was not 
justified by works. "For if Abraham were justified by 
works, he hath whereof to glory; but not before God. For 
what saith the Scripture ? Abraham believed God, and it 
was counted unto him for righteousness. Now to him that 
worketh is the reward not reckoned of grace, but of debt." 
(Rom. iv. 2-4. ) As if the apostle had said, If man obtained 
salvation by his own works, he has a title to heaven which 
G-od cannot refuse to acknowledge ; but that is not the way 
in which Abraham had this title; it is not thus that the 
sinner gains it now. "But to him that worketh not" — that 
is, does not work in order to make himself meritorious in the 
sight of God, or to have a plea to take in his hand to the 
gate of glory — " but believeih on him that justijieth the un- 
godly, his faith is counted for righteousness. Even as David 
also describeth the blessedness of the man, unto whom God 
imputeth righteousness without works." (Verses 4, 5, 6.) 
As an act of grace on God's part, and the result of personal 
reliance on Christ on our part, our feet are placed on the Rock 
of ages, and, " being justified by faith, we have peace with 
God through our Lord Jesus Christ." (Rom. v. 1.) Just- 
ification is not ours, as Rome teaches, by a change of nature, 
but by a change of state. We are " accepted in the Beloved." 

In the face of all anathemas, therefore — having the word 
of God as the standard of our appeal, and having an inspired 
apostle as our instructor, we still maintain that we "do not 
frustrate the grace of God ; for if righteousness come by the 
law, then Christ is dead in vain." (Gal. ii. 21.) We are 
always ready to say, " Yea doubtless, and we count all things 
but loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus 
our Lord ;" and we desire to be " found in him, not having 



4 ROMISH DOCTRINE OF PENANCE, 

our own righteousness, which is of the law, but that which is 
Mirough the faith of Christ, the righteousness which is of 
God by faith." (Phil. iii. 8, 9. ) Of all, therefore, who seek 
the favor of God by their own merits, it must be said, " They, 
being ignorant of God's righteousness, and going about 
to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted 
themselves unto the righteousness of God. For Christ is 
the end of the law for righteousness to every one that be- 
ticveth." (Rom. x. 3, 4.) 

Now we find that there has been a lamentable perversion of 
the true doctrine of justification by the Church of Rome. 
She has pronounced " the justification of the sinner to be, 
not only the remission of sin, but also sanctification and the 
renovation of the inward man ;" and has decreed that " if 
any man shall say that men are justified solely by the impu- 
tation of the righteousness of Christ, or solely by the remission 
of sins, to the exclusion of grace and love, which is shed 
abroad in the heart by the Spirit, and is inherent in them — or 
even that the grace by which we are justified is only the favor 
of God : let him be accursed."* 

But in harmony with what we have thus shown to be the 
doctrine of Scripture are the teachings of all evangelical Pro- 
testant Churches, which are substantially expressed in the 
ninth article of the Methodist Confession : — 

" We are accounted righteous before God only for the merit of 
our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ by faith, and not for our own 
works and deservings. Wherefore, that we are justified by faith 
only, is a most wholesome doctrine, and very full of comfort." 

It is well known that the " fathers'' have great weight and 
authority with the members of the Romish Church : let us 
entreat attention, therefore, to the testimony of one of the 
greatest of them. Chrysostom on 2 Cor. v. 21 — " He hath 
made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin, that we might 
be made the righteousness of God in him" — says, "What mind 
can represent these things ? He made the righteous one a 
sinner, that he might make the sinners righteous. Rather, 
this is not what he says, but something much greater. He 
does not say he made him a sinner, but sin, that is, a sin- 
offering or sacrifice for sin, the substitute for the sinner : not 



* Cone. Trident, Sess. VI. 



ABSOLUTION, AND INDULGENCES. 5 

only him who had not sinned, but who did not know sin, thai 
we might be made, not righteous, but righteousness, and the 
righteousness of God. For this is the righteousness of God. 
when we are justified, not by works, (for in this case it is 
necessary that there should be no spot in them,) but by grace 
in the blotting out of all sin. This does not permit us to be 
lifted up, because God freely gives us all, and teaches us the 
greatness of the gift ; for the former righteousness is that of 
the law and of works, but this is the righteousness of God/' 

II. Having endeavored to set before the reader the gospel 
method of a sinner's justification, we now proceed to contrast 
with this the Romish sacrament of penance. 

The following is the doctrine of the Church of Rome on 
this subject, as set forth by the Council of Trent : — 

" Whoever shall deny that, in order to the full and perfect 
forgiveness of sins, three acts are required of the penitent, 
constituting as it were the matter of the sacrament of pen- 
ance — namely, contrition, confession, and satisfaction, which 
are called the three parts of penance; or shall affirm that 
there are only two parts of penance — namely, terrors where- 
with the conscience is smitten by the sense of sin, and faith, 
produced by the gospel, or by absolution, whereby the person 
believes that his sins are forgiven him through Christ : let 
him be accursed." 

" Whoever shall affirm that the words of the Lord our 
Saviour, ' Receive ye the Holy Ghost : whose soever sins ye 
remit, they are remitted unto them ; and whose soever sins ye 
retain, they are retained/ are not to be understood of the 
power of forgiving and retaining sins in the sacrament of 
penance, as the Catholic Church has always from the very 
first understood them, but shall restrict them to the authority 
of preaching the gospel, in opposition to the institution of 
this sacrament : let him be accursed." 

" Whoever shall deny that sacramental confession was 
instituted by Divine command, or that it is necessary to sal- 
vation ' } or shall affirm that the practice of secretly confessing 
to the priest alone, as it has been ever observed from the 
beginning by the Catholic Church, and is still observed, is 
foreign to the institution and command of Christ, and is 
a human invention : let him be accursed." 

" Whoever shall affirm that the priest's sacramental absolution 



6 ROMISH DOCTRINE OF PENANCE, 

is not a judicial act, but only a ministry to pronounce and 
declare that the sins of the party confessing are forgiven, so 
that he believes himself to be absolved, even though the 
priest should not absolve seriously but in jest; or shall affirm 
that the confession of the penitent is not necessary in order 
to obtain absolution from the priest : let him be accursed.'' 

" Whoever shall affirm that we can by no means make sat- 
isfaction to God for our sins, through the merits of Christ, as 
far as the temporal penalty is concerned, either by punish- 
ments inflicted on us by him, and patiently borne, or enjoined 
by the priest, though not undertaken of our own accord, such 
as fastings, prayers, alms, or other works of piety; and there- 
fore that the best penance is nothing more than a new life : 
let him be accursed."* 

Now it is a matter of history that the Council of Trent,_ in 
the discussion of this question, were much more apt at citing 
the school doctors and canon law than the word of God ; When 
they did appeal to the Scriptures, the manner in which they 
used them showed how imperfectly they were acquainted with 
them; or rather how, in order to support the traditions of 
men, they handled the word of God deceitfully. 'For instance, 
to prove that auricular confession was taught by the inspired 
writers, they collected all the passages in which the words 
''confess" and "confession" are found, and unceremoniously 
converted them into evidence on their side, regardless alto- 
gether of the real meaning of the text so quoted ; and they 
busied themselves in searching the Old Testament for figures 
by which it might be supposed that confession was typified ; 
and he was accounted the most skillful who produced the 
greatest number. It was by such labors that the decisions ot 
an infallible council were framed 1 

In the first place, we deny that penance is a sacrament at 
all. In a sacrament, it is agreed on all sides, two things are 
essential — the sign, and the thing signified; or, as Rome 
styles them, "matter" and "form." The sign is something 
material and visible — something addressed to the senses ; and 
by this a sacrament is distinguished from other religious insti- 
tutions. 

Now, as to the so-called " sacrament of penance," the 



* Cone. Trid. Sess. XIV. 



ABSOLUTION, AND INDULGENCES. 7 

" matter," we are told, is the confession to the priest ; and the 
form, " I absolve thee, in the name of the Father, and of the 
Son, and of the Holy Ghost." Here both "matter" and 
" form" are pure inventions. They have nothing sacramental 
in their nature. 

Secondly, we maintain that there is no authority in the 
word of God for Christians confessing their sins to a priest. 
The Church of Rome, indeed, declares, in the twenty-first 
canon of the Lateran Council, the absolute necessity of this : — 

"Every person of years of discretion is commanded to 
confess his sins to his own priest, at least once in the year, or 
to another priest with the leave of his own : otherwise, while 
he is living, he must be driven from entrance into the Church, 
and, when he is dead, he must have no Christian burial." 

Now, let it not be supposed that Protestants deny that sins 
are to be confessed ; but they maintain that we are to confess to 
God. It was in this way that David confessed his sins. 
" Iniquities," he said, " prevail against me : as for our trans- 
gressions, thou shalt purge them away." (Psa. lxv. 3.) When 
he had committed those awful sins which insulted his God 
and have left a stain upon his memory, he poured forth his 
penitential sighs, and groans, and tears, and lamentations, in 
the presence and into the ear of God alone. He said, 
"Against thee, thee only, have I sinned, and done this evil in 
thy sight : that thou mightest be justified when thou speakest, 
and be clear when thou judgest." (Psa. li. 4.) We find this 
was the habit of Old Testament saints : in the confession of 
their sins they went at once to God. Ezra, on behalf of his 
countrymen, thus acted : "At the evening sacrifice I arose 
up from my heaviness ; and having rent my garment and my 
mantle, I fell upon my knees, and spread out my hands unto 
the Lord my God, and said, my God, I am ashamed and 
blush to lift up my face to thee, my God ; for our iniquities 
are increased over our head, and our trespass is grown up unto 
the heavens. (Chap. ix. 5, 6.) Again, the Old Testament 
Church thus makes confession before God by the lips of the 
prophet Isaiah : " We are all as an unclean thing, and all our 
righteousnesses are as filthy rags ; and we all do fade as a 
leaf; and our iniquities, like the wind, have taken us away." 
(Chap. lxiv. 6.) Once more: the prophet Hosea exhorts 
Israel to penitential confession and repentance: he says, 



8 ROMISH DOCTRINE OF PENANCE, 

" Israel, return unto the Lord thy God ; for thou hast 
fallen by thine iniquity. Take with you words, and turn to 
the Lord : say unto him, Take away all iniquity, and receive 
us graciously : so will we render the calves of our lips. (Chap. 
xiv. 1, 2.) Now, in not one of these or other cases is an 
example of confession made to a priest. It is made to God 
alone. Accordingly David says, "I acknowledged my sin 
unto thee, and mine iniquity have I not hid. I said, I will 
confess my transgressions unto the Lord ; and thou forgavest 
the iniquity of my sin." (Psa. xxxii. 5.) Here is direct 
confession to God, and immediate absolution from him. And 
under the gospel have we less encouragement to go to God ? 
No, we have " a Father," seated on a throne of grace : we 
have " a Spirit of grace and supplications/' to bring us near 
in lowly confession and brokenness of heart to him; and 
exalted at his right hand is the Advocate to plead our cause, 
whose blood, presented on behalf of the penitent, secures 
immediate absolution from him who "delighteth in mercy;" 
from him whose sole prerogative it is to pardon — from him who 
says, "I, even I, am he that blotteth out thy transgressions 
for mine own sake, and will not remember thy sins. Put me 
in remembrance : let us plead together : declare thou, that 
thou mayest be justified/' (Isa. xliii. 25, 26.) 

The duty then of all sinners is to confess to God, and to 
him alone. We earnestly urge it upon every reader : "Let 
the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his 
thoughts ; and let him return unto the Lord, and he will have 
mercy upon him ; and to our God, for he will abundantly par- 
don." (Isa. lv. 7.) "If we confess our sins, he is faithful 
and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all 
unrighteousness." (1 John i. 9.) 

" But," says the Romanist, " the sacrament of penance is 
of divine authority, because Christ said to his apostles, 'As 
my Father hath sent me, even so send I you. Whose soever 
sins ye remit, they are remitted unto them; and whose soever 
sins ye retain, they are retained." (John xx. 22, 28.) In 
the first place, we reply, that, assuming these words to convey 
to the apostles a power to forgive sins, it does not follow that 
the priests of Rome have any claim or warrant to exercise a 
similar power. Why ? Because the aposf/rs were not priests. 
Christ gave them no power to offer sacrifices; and therefore 



ABSOLUTION, AND INDULGENCES. 9 

when the Roinish clergy claim the power of offering sacrifices 
for the sins of the living and of the dead, then they prove 
themselves the ministers of Antichrist, and not the " successors 
of the apostles." 

Further, there is not one example in the history of the 
primitive Church of any man confessing his sins even to an 
apostle, or receiving absolution from him 

It is true that the contrary is asserted. The celebrated 
Thomas Maguire, the great champion of Romanism in Ire- 
land, had the hardihood to bring forward the case of Ananias 
and Sapphira as one of auricular confession. He represented 
them as making a " sacramental confession" to St. Peter, in 
the " tribunal :" that they " lied to the Holy Ghost/' because 
St. Peter, in the " tribunal" of confession, was the represent- 
ative of the Holy G-host ! and that they were struck dead for 
abusing this holy tribunal !* Now, in this, as in the case of many 
other Romish arguments, there is a fearful wresting of the 
Scriptures from their plain meaning. Let any one read the 
narrative of the circumstances connected with the death of 
these persons. Let us look at Acts iv. 32, 34, 35, where it is 
said, " The multitude of them that believed were of one heart 
and of one soul : neither said any of them that aught of the 
things which he possessed was his own; but they had all 
things common. Neither was there any among them that 
lacked; for as many as were possessors of lands or houses 
sold them, and brought the prices of the things that were 
sold, and laid them down at the apostles' feet." Under the 
peculiar and persecuted state of the primitive Church at Je- 
rusalem, there was a common fund, formed by the spirit of 
self-sacrificing love : the richer members voluntarily selling 
their property, and bringing the produce to the apostles as 
treasurers, laying it thus at their feet, that they might dispense 
it as any of the poor saints had need. But can any one ima- 
gine, for a moment, that there was any thing of auricular 
confession here ? Did these persons come to make confession 
tc the apostles ? Assuredly, evidently not ; and if they did 
not do so, neither did Ananias and Sapphira, for it is said that 
they " sold a possession and kept back part of the price; and 

* See Keport of Discussion between Gregg and Maguire, pp. 134, 
135. Dublin, 1839. 

4 



10 ROMISH DOCTRINE OF PENANCE, 

brought a certain part and laid it at the apostles' feet. Not 
do we find that there is a word spoken by them at all. They 
brought a part, and silently indicated, by the offering of it, 
that they were doing what others had done — giving the whole ; 
and their wickedness was, that they pretended to do that which 
God kncio they were not doing. Peter, speaking by the Holy, 
Spirit, said, "Ananias, why hath Satan filled thine heart to lie 
to the Holy G-host?" They meant to deceive the apostles, 
and therein they virtually sought to put a cheat upon the 
Spirit of God, because under the influence of that Spirit the 
apostles had gone forth, and, by his miraculous powers accom- 
panying the gospel, the Church of Jerusalem had been formed, 
and the gospel dispensation had been established. This is 
the true meaning of the passage ; and it furnishes not a 
shadow of support to the idea that Peter was in the confess- 
ional, and that Ananias and Sapphira were kneeling as peni- 
tents before him. 

Another passage brought forward in support of auricular 
confession is Acts xix. 18, 19, where it is said, "And many 
that believed came and confessed, and showed their deeds. 
Many of them also which used curious arts brought their 
books together, and burned them before all men ; and they 
counted the price of them, and found it fifty thousand pieces 
of silver." Now, very clearly, this was not a case of auri- 
cular confession, (whispering into the ear of a priestly con- 
fessor;) for these transgressors came confessing and showing 
in the most public manner, in the presence of the apostles, 
the Church and the world, that they were truly sorry for their 
past sins ; and as an evidence of this, they brought forth their 
wicked books, and burned them, even though valued at "fifty 
thousand pieces of silver." These persons, again, are not 
said to have received any absolution ; and no wonder, for they 
were absolved already. It is said, that "many that believed 
came and confessed, and showed their deeds." Their " faith" 
had saved them ; and because that faith was exercised, Jesus, 
as the Lord their Righteousness, had already said to each of 
them, "Son, be of good cheer: thy sins are forgiven thee." 

Again, we find reference made to James v. 16, where it is 
said, "Confess your faults one to another." We are sur- 
prised that any one should dare to adduce this passage in 
support of the Romish confessional. It is not said, " Confess 



ABSOLUTION, AND INDULGENCES. 11 

your faults to a priest ;" but it tells Christians they are to con- 
fess them " one to another." If a nian, therefore, confess to a 
priest, the priest is equally bound to confess to him : both parties 
are under equal obligation. Who does not clearly perceive, that 
here the beautiful lesson is taught, that private Christians 
should, in their holy conferences with one another, confess 
and acknowledge their mutual faults, and then " pray one for 
another," as the apostle directs, that the spiritual diseases of 
their souls " may be healed." 

The Church of Rome also tells us, that confession to a 
priest is necessary to prepare for the holy communion. The apos- 
tle Paul had a very different idea. He did not say to the Corinth- 
ian church, " Come to me, or go to your ministers to confess, 
and afterwards approach the holy table;" but he said, "Let 
a man examine himself, and so let him eat of that bread, 
and drink of that cup." (1 Cor. xi. 28.) 

And now, we ask with confidence, if the apostles had 
understood Christ as conferring on them the power of hearing 
confessions and of pronouncing absolution, how is it that 
there is not one example in all their history of their ever 
exercising that power ? We challenge Romanists to produce 
one. 

The truth is that the phrases "binding" and "loosing," 
and "forgiving" and "retaining" sin, refer to the declaration 
by Christ's ministers of the wrath of God on the impenitent 
and unbelieving on the one hand, and of his mercy to all 
who repent and believe on the other ; and also to the exer- 
cise of a scriptural discipline in the Christian Church. Thus 
he "looses" and "binds" in the former sense, when, in his 
Master's name, he publicly declares, " He that believeth on the 
Son hath everlasting life ; and he that believeth not the Son 
shall not see life, but the wrath of Grod abideth on him." (John 
hi. 36.) Take, as an illustration of the latter sense, the Apostle 
Paul's language to the Corinthians, 2 Cor. ii. 10, " To whom ye 
forgive any thing, I forgive also." The apostle is referring to 
the exercise of discipline in the church at Corinth. A mem- 
ber had acted unworthily, and had been punished by excision 
from the church : the apostle now urges them to remit the 
punishment, and no longer shut out the man from Church 
fellowship, but to receive him to privileges again. Now, this 
was the act of "loosing," (in Christ's sense of the word) — 



12 ROMISH DOCTRINE OF PENANCE. 

"the loosing" of the man that was "bound:" it was the 
forgiveness of one whose sins had been "retained/' in the 
sense that he had been hitherto excommunicated, cast out of 
the pale of the visible Church, and treated as "a heathen 
man and a publican." This power of excommunication, we 
know, was exercised in the primitive churches in the sense 
which we have now described. At Corinth, a man had been 
guilty of a flagrant crime ; and St. Paul says, 1 Cor. v. 4, 5, 
" In the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, when ye are gathered 
together, and my spirit," (that is, as though I was present 
with you,) "with the power of our Lord Jesus Christ, to 
deliver such an one unto Satan," — that is, to shut him out of 
the Church, which is Christ's kingdom, and to put him back 
into the world, which is Satan's kingdom — "to deliver such 
an one unto Satan for the destruction of the flesh," that he 
may be brought to repentance, and to crucify unholy passions, 
" that the spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus." 
There were certain other parties, of whom says Paul, in 
another epistle, "Whom I have delivered unto Satan, that 
they may learn not to blaspheme." 1 Tim. i. 20. The Christ 
ian minister and the officers of the Church are bound to see 
that the children's bread be not given to the dogs. The 
scandalous offender must be thrust out of the Church, until 
he gives evidence of repentance : he must thus be spiritually 
"bound," and not till he repents, and there is evidence of it, 
is he to be "loosed" again. Here, then, we have the true 
meaning of that passage ; and yet Rome founds upon it the 
" sacrament of penance !"* 

* "We say," writes Bishop Jewell, "that Christ hath given to his 
ministers power to bind, to loose, to open, to shut, and that the office 
of loosing consisteth in this: either (1) that the minister by the 
preaching of the gospel offereth the merits of Christ and full pardon 
to such as have lowly, contrite hearts and do unfeignedly repent them- 
selves — pronouncing unto the same a sure and undoubted forgiveness 
of their sins, and hope of everlasting salvation: or else (2) that the 
same minister, when any have offended their brethren's minds with 
some great offence or notable or open crime, Avhereby they have, as it 
were, banished and made themselves strangers from the common fel- 
lowship, and from the body of Christ, then, after perfect amendment 
of such persons, doth reconcile them and bring them home again and 
restart* Hum to the company and unity of the faithful. We say also 
the minister doth execute the authority of binding and shutting: (1) aa 



ABSOLUTION, AND INDULGENCES. 18 

We denounce, then, the confessional as a daring insult to 
Him who is exalted " to be a Prince and a Saviour, for to 
give repentance to Israel, and forgiveness of sins." (Acts v. 
81.) Here, assuredly, is indisputable proof that Romanism 
blasphemously usurps a power which belongs to God alone.* 
Away, then, with this awful assumption — pardon by the abso- 
lution of a priest ! It not only insults God, but it establishes 
a system of social tyranny altogether intolerable. Tell us not 
of the confessional of Rome as the grand safeguard of moral- 
ity! Instead of befriending the cause of morality, it has 
notoriously proved a fearful source of corruption, debauchery, 
and demoralization. We dare not outrage the readers' feel- 
ings, by translating from the Latin works of Dens and Li- 
guori (recognized class-books in the Romish Church)f those 
foul instructions which are given to the priests as to the ques- 
tions they are to ask of females in the confessional. No Pro- 
testant parent would permit to enter his house some of those 
devotional books that are put by Rome into the hands of 
young persons as a preparation for confession. However holy 
the pretence is, the confessional we must regard calculated in 
the most fearful degree to pollute the mind both of the priest 
and the professed penitent. 

In another sense, also, there have been awfully demoralizing 
results from the confessional. Many a time and oft has the 
statement been made on the scaffold bydhe convicted mur- 
derer in Ireland that he was "innocent as the child unborn." 
And what shall account for this, but the imaginary virtue of 

often as he shutteth up the gate of the kingdom of heaven against 
unbelieving and stubborn persons, denouncing unto them G'od's ven- 
geance and everlasting punishment ; or else (2) when he doth shut 
them out from the bosom of the Church by open excommunication. 
Out of doubt, what sentence soever the minister of God shall give in 
this sort, God himself doth so well allow it, that whatsoever he looseth 
or bindeth here on earth, God himself will loose and bind and confirm 
the same in heaven." 

* "In the minister of God who sits in the tribunal of penance as 
his legitimate judge, he" (the penitent) "venerates the power and per- 
son of our Lord Jesus Christ; for in the administration of this, as in that 
of the other sacraments, the priest represents the character and discharges 
the functions of Jesus Christ." — Catechism of the Council of Trent, 
p. 260. 

f " Dens' Be Peccatis, and Liguori's Compendium Theologies Moralis. 
2 



14 ROMISH DOCTRINE OF PENANCE, 

priestly absolution? The man has been taught to believe that 
this has shrived his soul from the stain of blood; and thus, 
with a lie in his right hand, and a falsehood on his lips, the 
murderer has been launched into eternity !* 

The second part in the sacrament of penance as a method 
of pardon, is CONTRITION. The Jesuit doctors teach that 
"a general hatred of sin" is sufficient, and that when the 
"penitent is strongly attached to any sin/' the confessor 
" should take care not to require regret for that sin in parti- 
cular ;"f that the priest ought to absolve the penitent, though 
he suppose that the penitent will return to his sin ;" yea, that 
" though the penitent himself believe that he shall soon 
repeat his crimes, he is nevertheless in a state of receiving 
absolution, provided his sin be displeasing to him at the time 
of his confession."}: How, we ask, can that repentance be 
genuine, which is not followed by the abandonment of sin, by 
holiness of life, by "fruits meet for repentance?" 

But even if Romanists were correct in their definition of 
contrition, even if it were viewed as that " godly sorrow" 
which is "unto life," and which is always followed by true 
obedience, still there would be nothing in contrition to merit 
the pardon of sin or the favor of God. The merits of Christ 
are the sole meritorious ground of our acceptance with God. 

As to the " works of satisfaction," which the priest has 
power to prescribe, the Church of Rome has decreed that 
"we are able to make satisfaction to God by punishments 
voluntarily endured, or imposed at the pleasure of the priest, 
and by temporal pains inflicted by God himself, and by us 
patiently borne." 

Here again, in the most offensive way, we have the doctrine 
of human merit, in express opposition to the gospel of the 

* A converted Romish priest, who became a Protestant clergyman 
in Ireland, -writes thus: " Through the confessional I hare been fre- 
quently apprised of intended assassinations and most diabolical 
conspiracies ; but still, from ungodly injunctions of secrecy in the 
Romish creed, lest, as Pctrr Dens says, the confessional should be- 
come odious, I dared not give the slightest intimation to the marked- 
out victims for slaughter." (Third pamphlet by the Rev. J. L. 
Nolan, p. 122. Dublin, 1838.) 

\ Tambourin's Easy Method of Confession, lib. i. chap. I. 

% Pirot'a Apology for the Casuists, p. 162. 



ABSOLUTION, AND INDULGENCES. 15 

grace of Grod. " Chastisements for sin voluntarily borne,' — 
these are considered meritorious; and of these there is an 
almost inconceivable variety. There is the repetition of "Ave- 
Marias" and " Pater-Nosters," — (the offering of prayers, in the 
Church of Rome, is a punishment instead of a privilege !) — 
the endurance of excruciating tortures, and of the most pain- 
ful privations. 

Until very lately, prilgrimages were constantly performed 
by multitudes, every year, to Lough Derg, in the west of Ire- 
land. In one of the islands in this lake, called " Station 
Island/' there are "seven penitential beds," or circles, 
around which, on hard and pointed rocks, the penitents passed 
upon their bare knees, repeating a certain form of prayer at 
each. This, with visits to the chapel, almost entire absti- 
nence from food, and the repetition of many prayers, con- 
tinued for eight days. On the ninth day, the prior put the 
pilgrims into a prison, into which no light was permitted to 
enter, where neither refreshment nor sleep was permitted, 
and in which they were shut up for twenty-four hours. This 
"prison/' with the chapel in connection with it, is called "St. 
Patrick's Purgatory." In like manner, until the power of 
the Protestant press put down the practice, crowds of pilgrims 
were wont to repair to the "holy wells" of Struel, in the 
county Down, after having first visited what is supposed to be the 
grave of St. Patrick, each person bearing away a handful of 
" holy earth, which was believed to be invested with special 
virtue !"* 

There are some astonishing revelations as to "works of 
satisfaction." In the Roman Breviary it is said of St. The- 
resa, that " her ardor in punishing the body was so vehement 
as to make her use hair .shirts, chains, nettles, scourges, and 
even roll herself among thorns." Of St. Rose, that "she 
wore three folds of an iron chain round her waist, a belt set 
with small needles, and an iron crown armed inside with 
points ; and that she made to herself a bed of the unpolished 
trunks of trees, and filled up the interstices with broken 
pottery!" 

Of Alphonsus Liguori it is related, that he practiced works 

* See « The Holy Wells of Ireland," by P. D. Hardy, M. R. I. A 
Dublin, 1836. 



16 ROMISH DOCTRINE OF PENANCE 



of satisfaction to such a degree, and so severely lashed him- 
self, that only the interference of his friends saved him from 
putting himself to death ! 

Such are specimens of the punishments and works of satis- 
faction enjoined and performed under "the sacrament of 
penance. " And finally, " the faithful" are also taught that 
"afflictions coming from the hand of God, and patiently 
borne, are an abundant source of satisfaction and merit."* 
We shall not dwell at length on this fearful heresy. "We 
shall content ourselves with asking, Are our sufferings and 
trials to be added to the atonement of Christ, or to be 
substituted for the tears, and agonies, and cries of Him who, 
for our salvation, was the " man of sorrows and acquainted 
with grief/' who himself "bare our sinS in his own body on 
the tree/' and "by whose stripes we are healed ?"j* 

We shall now conclude by noticing the Romish doctrine of 
indulgences. One would think that, with their fastings, 
their almsgivings, penances, and works of satisfaction, such 
as we have described, and the priestly absolution accompany- 
ing all these, Romanists might have been secure in the 
conviction that their sins were remitted, and their salvation 
certain. Yet all these are found to be insufficient. The 
most obedient and dutiful son of the Church finds still a 
heavy balance against him, which, if not discharged, will 
lengthen in the next world the purifying process which he must 
undergo. But here provision is made for him by the Church. 
She asserts that there is an immense treasure of unemployed 
merit, partly Christ's, and partly accruing from the works of 
supererogation performed by saints; and that all this is at the 
disposal of the sovereign pontiff, the pope, having been placed 
in the hands of Peter, who has transmitted them to his suc- 
cessors ! "I affirm/' swears every Roman Catholic priest, 
"that the power of indulgences was left by Christ to his 
Church, and that the use of them is very healthful to Christ- 
ian people."— Creed of Pnjw Pius IV \ We ask, When and 
where was the power of granting indulgences left to his 
Church by the Lord Jesus Christ,'? There is no such record 



* Catechism of Council of Trent, p. 2 ( .)2. -j- 1 Peter ii. 24. 

X See aJso the Catechism of Dr. England, Bishop of Charleston, 
S. C, p. 62.— Editor. 



ABSOLUTION, AND INDULGENCES. 17 

in the word of God. Merit in the creature can never be 
recognized by Him who said, "When ye shall have done all 
those things which are commanded you, say, We are unprofit- 
able servants : we have done that which was our duty to do." 
(Luke xvii. 10.) When the whole obedience which man 
can render is here said to be "unprofitable," it evidently 
means unmeritorious, undeserving. The whole context proves 
that Christ's design was to teach that the servant who does 
all God requires is entitled to no thanks, and deserves no 
reward, because he has only done his duty. To come short 
of this, is sin : to exceed it in reference to God, is impossible. 
What could any man, even with the burning love of a seraph 
in his soul, do more than is involved in that supreme "love" 
which is "the fulfilling of the law?" And can we believe 
that the holiest saint who ever lived, in whom the Spirit of 
God dwelt continually, who maintained a constant conflict 
with the world, the flesh, and the devil, and who was " filled 
with the fruits of righteousness" — that he, "clothed with 
humility," and conscious of many infirmities, would ever have 
thought of adding his good works to the merit of Christ? 
When the foolish virgins went to the wise, and said, " Give 
us of your oil; for our lamps have gone out," — "Not so," 
was the reply, " lest there be not enough for us and you ; but 
go ye rather to them that sell, and buy for yourselves." 
(Matt. xxv. 9.) 

The history of indulgences is one of the most lamentable 
illustrations of ecclesiastical corruption and avarice. When 
the power of absolution was conferred on the clergy, a num- 
ber of special cases were reserved for the bishops. There were 
penances to whose severity fresh crimes were adding every year, 
and it sometimes required a lifetime to perform them. There 
were cases also where a man had the prospect of several hun- 
dred years before the penance or punishment could be accom- 
plished. Some expedient was necessary to get rid of this. 
This was done by bishops remitting penance in the form of 
indulgence : the penitent commuting for the punishment by 
giving a sum of money for the bishop to lay out in building, 
or distributing among the poor, or to devote- to any other 
object he pleased, and also by going on a pilgrimage to some 
distant shrine. These indulgences, of course, added greatly 
to the wealth of the clergy. The popes at first did not 
4* 



18 ROMISH DOCTRINE OF PENANCE, 

interfere, but by and by they claimed the whole; and some 
of them scattered them about profusely. In order, for in- 
stance, to excite the zeal of Europe at the time of the Cru- 
sades, so that men might assume the cross, and go forth 
against the infidels who had possession of Palestine, indul- 
gences were proclaimed; and these were eagerly bought, 
because they wiped out the record of all past transgressions. 
It was under Pope Leo X. that this system attained its 
highest influence. The habits of that pope were voluptuous 
and expensive : his treasury was exhausted, and he sought to 
replenish it, to enable him to build the church of St. Peter, 
at Rome. The signing by him of the bull which authorized 
the sale of indulgences, may be regarded as the great crisis of 
the reformation in Europe. The tax to be collected was 
farmed out by the prelates in their several districts. They 
employed eloquent preachers to magnify the value of the 
indulgences, and, according to the pope's bull, all, "whether 
living or dead, were freed from so much temporal punishment, 
due according to Divine justice, for their actual sins, as is 
equivalent to the value of the indulgence bestowed and re- 
ceived." 

"A great agitation," says D' Aubigne,* " prevailed at this 
time among the German people. The Church had opened a 
vast market on earth. From the crowds of purchasers, and 
the shouts and jokes of the sellers, it might have been called 
a fair, conducted by monks. The merchandise which they 
were extolling, and which they offered at a reduced price, 
was, said they, the salvation of souls. These dealers tra- 
versed the country in a handsome carriage, accompanied by 
three horsemen, living in great state, and spending freely. 
When the procession approached a town, a deputy waited on 
the magistrate, and said, ' The grace of God and of the Holy 
Father is at your gates !' Instantly every thing was in mo- 
tion in the place. The clergy, the priests and nuns, the 
councils, the schoolmasters and their pupils, the trades with 
their banners, men and women, went out to meet those mer- 
chants, bearing lighted tapers in their hands, and advancing 
to the sound of music and all the bells : so that, says our 
historian, they could not have received God himself with 



* History of the Reformation, Book III. chap. 1. 



ABSOLUTION, AND INDULGENCES. 19 

greater honor ! Salutations being exchanged, the procession 
moved towards the church. The pontiff's bull of grace was 
carried in front on a velvet cushion, or on cloth of gold. The 
chief of the indulgence merchants came next, holding a large 
red wooden cross in his hand. As the procession thus moved 
along, amidst ringing, prayers, and the smoke of incense, the 
sound of the organ and loud music welcomed the merchant 
monk and his attendants into the temple. The cross which 
he had carried was placed in front of the altar : on it were 
suspended the arms of the pope ; and so long as it remained 
there, the clergy of the place and others came daily after 
vespers, and before the salutation, to render it homage. One 
person in particular attracted public attention on these occa- 
sions : it was he who carried the red cross, and played the 
chief part. He was robed in the Dominican dress, and moved 
with an air of arrogance. His voice was sonorous, and seemed 
in its full strength, though he had already attained his sixty-third 
year. This was the celebrated, or rather the infamous, Tetzel. 
When the cross had been erected, he went into the pulpit, 
and in the presence of the crowd began to extol the value of 
indulgences : — 

"'Indulgences are the most precious and most noble of 
God's gifts. This cross (pointing to the red cross) has as 
much efficacy as the very cross of Jesus Christ. Come, and 
I will give you letters, all properly sealed, by which even the 
sins which you intend to commit may be pardoned. I would 
not change my privileges with those of St. Peter in heaven, 
for I have saved more souls by my indulgences than the apos- 
tle by his sermons. There is no sin so great that an indul- 
gence cannot remit. Keflect, then, that for every mortal sin 
you must, after confession and contrition, do penance for 
seven years, either in this life or in purgatory. Now, how 
many mortal sins are there not committed in a day: how 
many in a month, week, year, and whole year ! Alas ! these 
sins are almost infinite, and they entail an infinite penalty in 
the fires of purgatory; and now, by means of these letters 
of indulgences, you can once in your life, in every case except 
four, which are reserved for the apostolic see, and afterwards 
in the article of death, obtain a plenary remission of all your 
penalties and all your sins; but, more than this, indul- 
gences avail not only for the living, but for the dead; for that 



20 ROMISH DOCTRINE OF PiiNANCE, 

repentance is not even necessary. Priest, noble, merchant, 
wife, youth, maiden, do you not hear your parents and other 
friends, who are dead, and who cry from the bottom of the 
abyss, 'We are suffering horrible torments, a trifling alms 
would deliver us: you can give it, and will not?' At the 
very instant that the money rattles at the bottom of the chest, 
the soul escapes from purgatory, and it flies liberated to 
heaven. stupid and brutish people ! who do not under- 
stand the grace so richly offered. Now heaven is everywhere 
opened, do you refuse to enter in? When, then, will you 
enter ? Now you can ransom many souls. Stiff-necked and 
thoughtless man ! with twelve groats you can deliver your 
father from purgatory, and you are ungrateful enough not to 
save him. I shall be justified in the day of judgment ; but 
you — you will be punished so much the more severely for 
having neglected so great salvation. Do you know why our 
most holy lord distributes so rich a grace ? It is to restore 
the ruined church of St. Peter and St. Paul, so that it may 
not have its equal in the world. Blessed are your eyes, for 
they see ; and blessed are your ears, for they hear/ etc." 

Tetzel's absolution ran as follows : — 

" May our Lord Jesus Christ have pity on thee, and ab- 
solve thee by the merits of his most holy passion ; and I, 
by virtue of the apostolic power which has been confided 
to me, absolve thee from all ecclesiastical censures, judgments, 
and penalties, which thou mayest have incurred, — moreover, 
from all excesses, sins, and crimes, that thou mayest have com- 
mitted, however great and enormous they may be, and from 
whatsoever cause, were they even reserved for our most holy 
father, the pope, and for the apostolic see. I blot out all the 
stains of inability, and all marks of infamy, that thou mayest 
have drawn on thyself on this occasion. I remit the penal- 
ties thou shouldst have endured in purgatory. I restore thee 
anew to the participation of the sacraments of the Church. 
I incorporate thee afresh in the communion of saints, and 
reestablish thee in the purity and innocence thou hadst at 
thy baptism, so that, in the hour of death, the cate by 
which sinners enter the place of torment shall be closed 
against thee, and the gate leading to the paradise of ioy 
shall be open ; and if thou shouldst not die for long years, 
this peace will remain unalterable till the last hoSr shall 



ABSOLUTION, AND INDULGENCES. 21 

arrive. In the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost. 
Amen." 

We know it is said that Tetzel abused the power which 
Leo had given him; but the great question is this — Has 
Rome repented of her wickedness, by giving up the system of 
indulgences ? No. The Council of Trent sanctioned them, 
even after the time that Luther had exposed them to all 
Europe, and they are continued to this day. We find (ac- 
cording to the system of jubilees established in the year 1300, 
under the Pontificate of Boniface VIII.) that a bull was 
issued in 1825, offering to the faithful a liberal grant of in- 
dulgences. The vicar apostolic of the London district issued, 
in the same year, "instructions and directions" for gaining 
this great boon. " Embrace, dearly beloved," he said, " the 
benefit that is offered you by the indulgences of the present 
jubilee. Avail yourselves of every means of discharging 
your debt to the Divine justice." 

On the 1st of December, 1850, a document was issued by 
"Nicholas by the divine mercy of the holy Boman Church, 
by the title of St. Pudentiana, Cardinal Priest, archbishop of 
Westminster, and Administrator apostolic of the diocese of 
Southwark," proclaiming, by the authority of his " Holiness," 
"an extraordinary jubilee." "In order to encourage the 
faithful to partake of the benefits of this holy time, the Church 
liberally opens her precious treasures, and grants to all a 
plenary indulgence in the form of a jubilee." 

A modern traveller tells us that in the city of Rome "you 
may buy as many masses as will free your soul from purga- 
tory for twenty-nine thousand years at the church of St. John 
Lateran on the festival of that saint : at Santa Bibiana, on 
All Souls' Day, for seven thousand years." — Rome in the Vdth 
Century, vol. ii. pp. 267-270. 

Every year a lucrative system of indulgences is carried on 
in Spain. Four bulls are sent annually from Bome : the 
profits are divided between the monarch and the pope. But 
the great and awful day of judgment shall alone reveal the 
frightful amount of imposture connected with a system by 
which the Church of Bome identifies herself with that mys- 
tical "Babylon," of which John tells us, in the book of 
Bevelation, that her "merchandise" was in the "souis of 
men." (Bev. xviii. 12, 13.) 



22 ROMISH DOCTRINE OF PENANCE, 

Is there a Roman Catholic reader who has been trusting in 
confession and priestly absolution, in fasting, almsgiving, and 
indulgences, as meriting the favor of God, and purchasing 
pardon and salvation for his soul ? "We beseech you to flee at 
once from these refuges of lies to Jesus Christ. "The remis- 
sion of your sins," to use the words of Martin Luther, "is 
neither in the power of the pope, nor bishop, nor priest, nor 
of any other man, but reposes solely on the word of Christ, 
and on your own faith. It is this heavenly indulgence which 
reconciles men to God."* For "It is God that just- 
ifiethj" and "being justified by faith, we have peace with 
God through our Lord Jesus Christ." (Rom. viii. 33 ; v. 1.) 



WITNESS OF THE SPIRIT. 

BY C. WESLEY. 
I. 

How can a sinner know 

His sins on earth forgiven ? 
How can my Saviour show 

My name inscribed in heaven ? 
What we ourselves have felt and seen, 

With confidence we tell, 
And publish to the sons of men 

The signs infallible. 

We who in Christ believe 

That he for us hath died, 
His unknown peace receive, 

And feel his blood applied : 
Exults for joy our rising soul, 

Disburden'd of her load, 
And swells, unutterably full 

Of glory, and of God. 

His love, surpassing far 

The love of all beneath, 
We find within, and dare 

The pointless darts of death : 



Luther's Sermon on Repentance at Wittemberg. 



ABSOLUTION, AND INDULGENCES. 28 

Stronger than death, or sin, or hell, 

The mystic power we prove, 
And conquerors of the world we dwell 

In heaven, who dwell iu love. 

The pledge of future bliss 

He now to us imparts, 
His gracious Spirit is 

The earnest in our hearts : 
We antedate the joys above, 

We taste th' eternal powers, 
And know that all those heights of love 

And all those heavens are ours. 

Till he our life reveal, 

We rest in Christ secure : 
His Spirit is the seal 

Which made our pardon sure : 
Our sins his blood hath blotted out, 

And signed our soul's release ; 
And can we of his favor doubt, 

Whose blood declares us his ? 

We by his Spirit prove, 

And know the things of God, 
The things which of his love 

He hath on us bestow'd : 
Our God to us his Spirit gave, 

And dwells in us, we know — 
The Witness in ourselves we have, 

And all his fruits we show. 

The meek and lowly heart 

Which in our Saviour was, 
He doth to us impart, 

And signs us with his cross : 
Our nature's course is turn'd, our mind 

Transform'd in all its powers, 
And both the witnesses are join'd, 

The Spirit of God with ours. 

Whate'er our pardoning Lord 

Commands, we gladly do, 
And, guided by his word, 

We all his steps pursue : 
His glory is our sole design, 

We live our God to please, 
And rise with filial fear divine 

To perfect holiness. 



24 ROMISH DOCTRINE OP PENANCE, ETC. 

II. 

Ah ! foolish world, forbear 

Thine unavailing pain, 
Nor needlessly declare 

Our hope and labor vain : 
Tell us no more, we cannot know 

On earth the heavenly powers, 
Or taste the glorious bliss below, 

Or feel that God is ours. 

So ignorant of God, 

In sin brought up and born, 
Ye fools, be not so proud, 

Suspend your idle scorn : 
For us who have received our sight 

Ye fain would judges be, 
And make us think there is no light, 

Because you cannot see. 

The same in your esteem, 

Falsehood and truth ye join, 
The wild pretender's dream, 

And real work divine : 
Between the substance and the show 

No difference you can find, 
For colors all, full well we know, 

Are equal to the blind. 

Wherefore from us depart, 

And to each other tell, 
"We cannot on our heart 

The written pardon feel:" 
A stranger to the living bread 

Ye may beguile and cheat, 
But us you never can persuade 

That honey is not sweet. 

NwhTille Tenn. : Published by E. Stevenson & F. A. Owen, for the M. K. Churoh, South. 



No. 28. 



THE ROMISH 

DOCTRINE OF TEANSUBSTANTIATION 

CONTRARY TO THE SENSES, TO REASON, 
AND TO HOLY SCRIPTURE. 



The doctrine of transubstantiation in " the sacrifice of the 
mass/' as maintained and taught by the Church of Rome, 
demands special attention, involving, as it does, the question, 
■whether or not we are to shut our eyes to the testimony of 
our senses, and close our ears to the voice of reason and of 
common sense, and, above all, to the plain and distinct teach- 
ings of the Holy Scriptures. 

That we may at once enter upon the discussion, we shall 
give, from the accredited standards of the Church of Rome, 
her doctrine on the subject of transubstantiation. The fol- 
lowing are the decrees of the council of Trent : — 

" In the first place, the holy council teacheth, and openly 
and plainly professeth, that our Lord Jesus Christ, true God 
and man, is truly, really, and substantially contained in the 
pure sacrament of the holy Eucharist, after the consecration 
of the bread and wine, and under the species of these sensible 
objects." Sess. xiii., chap. i. 

" The Church of God hath always held, and the holy coun- 
cil doth now renew the declaration, that, by the consecration 
of the bread and wine, the whole substance of the bread is 
converted into the substance of the body of Christ our Lord, 
and the whole substance of the wine into his blood ; which 
conversion is, by the holy Catholic Church, fitly and properly 
called Transubstantiation." Chap. iv. 

Further, " Since it is not sufficient to state truth unless 
errors are detected and exposed, the holy council has thought 
fit to subjoin the following canons, that, the Catholic doctrine 



2 THE ROMISH DOCTRINE 

boing now declared, all persons may understand what heresies 
they ought to shun and avoid : 

" Canon I. Whosoever shall deny that in the most holy 
sacrament of the Eucharist there are truly, really, and sub- 
stantially contained the body and blood of our Lord Jesus 
Christ, together with his soul and divinity, and consequently 
Christ entire ; but shall say that he is present therein only in 
a sign or figure, or by his power : let him be accursed. 

" Canon II. Whoever shall affirm that in the most holy 
sacrament of the Eucharist there remains the substance of 
the bread and wine, together with the body and blood of our 
Lord Jesus Christ, and shall deny that wonderful and peculiar 
conversion of the whole substance of the bread into his body, 
and of the whole substance of the wine into his blood, the 
species only of bread and wine remaining, which conversion 
the Catholic Church most fitly terms Tran substantiation : 
let him be accursed/' 

Again, in the creed of Pope Pius IV., to which every 
Romish priest swears his adherence, we read as follows : 

"I profess, likewise, that in the mass is offered to Grod a 
true, proper, and propitiatory sacrifice for the living and the 
dead ; and that in the most holy sacrament of the Eucharist 
there is truly, really, and substantially the body and blood, 
together with the soul and divinity, of our Lord Jesus Christ j 
and that there is made a conversion of the whole substance 
of the bread into the body, and of the whole substance of the 
wine into the blood: which conversion the Catholic Church 
calls Transubstantiation." 

Let us next place before the reader the testimony of the Pro- 
testant Churches. The Methodist Episcopal Church declares: 

"Transubstantiation, or the change of the substance of 
bread and wine in the supper of the Lord, cannot be proved 
by holy writ, but is repugnant to the plain words of Scripture, 
oycrthroweth the nature of a sacrament, and hath given occa- 
sion to many superstitions. 

" The body of Christ is given, taken, and eaten in the sup- 
per, only after a heavenly and spiritual manner. And the 
means whereby the body of Christ is received and eaten in the 
BUpper, is faith." — Art. xviii. 

These statements fully express the view of all evangelical 
Protestants. The design of this paper, therefore, is to establish 



OP TRANSUBSTANTIATION. 3 

the proposition that the doctrine of transubstantiation, as taught 

by the Romish Church, contradicts the testimony of the senses, 

is opposed to reason, and has no warrant in the word of Grod- 

I. Transubstantiation is contrary to the testimony of the 

SENSES. 

Romanists tells us, that the moment the priest has pro- 
nounced the words of consecration, " For this is my body/'* 
there is an immediate change of substance : that is, the conse- 
crated wafer is no longer wheaten flour and water, but a whole 
living man, with all his flesh and all his blood — nay, with 
Christ's soul and Divinity united with it ; and then must the 
people kneel down to this transubstantiated host in token of 
the highest adoration, j- 

Now here, confessedly, a great miracle is said to be wrought. 
How are we to test its reality ? Why, first of all by an appeal 
to the senses. But here we are met with the objection, that the 
senses are incompetent witnesses, because they often deceive us. 

Now we admit that in certain diseased conditions of the 
body, the senses may deceive us. Thus, a man with the jaun- 
dice perceives a white object to be yellow : a man with partial 
deafness may mistake the words which have been uttered by 
another, and attach to them a meaning that was never in- 
tended. So, in sickness, the sense of taste may be so vitiated, 
that the palate will give an unfaithful testimony as to the 
taste of those viands that come in contact with it. And so, 
when reason is dethroned, the lunatic may believe himself a 
king : he may imagine that the straw in his hand is a sceptre, 
that his eyes see persons filling the apartment, where, alas ! 
he is all alone. Or, again, when we employ but one sense, 
such as the sight, when we should employ another, such as 
the touch or taste ; or when- we do not call in reason to the 
aid of the senses — in such cases we may draw erroneous con- 
clusions. £ But as, in logic, u the exception confirms the rule," 
because there are special circumstances accounting for it; so 

* Dr. Henry More calls these five words, "Hoc enim est corpus 
meum," the quinque-verbal charm! 

f The worship of latria, which is alleged to be due to God only, is 
given to the host or consecrated wafer. " Latrice cultum, qui vero Deo 
debetur." (Con. Trid., Sess. xiii., c. v.) 

X " In some instances our senses may deceive us, but no faculty 
deceives us so little or so seldom. And when our senses do deceive us, 
even that error is not to be corrected without the help of our tenses"-** 
tillotson's Sermons, p. 278. 



4 THE ROMISH DOCTRINE 

with those apparent exceptions which we have now men* 
tioned, there is no instance whatever in which our senses 
deceive us. Indeed, to say, as Romanists do, that our senses, 
as such, deceive us, is just to say, in other words, that God 
himself deceives us. He gave us these senses : they are 
essential to the fully organized and rightly constituted man, 
as the Creator formed him : they are the grand avenues by 
which we take cognizance of the external world, " by which 
the world comes into us, and we walk out into the world." 
If we doubt or deny the testimony of our senses, then we 
must become atheists, like the infidel philosopher Hume, who 
having persuaded himself that there was no external world, 
and that nothing existed but impressions or ideas, then leaped 
to the conclusion that there was no God nor devil, and 
neither a heaven nor a hell. If we doubt or deny the testi- 
mony of our senses, and follow the principle whither it leads 
us, we must embrace the heathen philosophy of Democritus 
and Epicurus in the days of old — who maintained that all the 
qualities of the body, which the moderns call secondary quali- 
ties — to wit, smell, taste, sound, color, heat, and cold, are 
mere illusions of sense, and have no real existence. In fact, 
if transubstantiation be true, against the testimony of our 
senses, then we can believe nothing else. " If you leave me 
without the witnesses, by which alone I can ascertain and test 
the great facts of natural and revealed religion, I stand alone 
in the universe of space, surrounded by the dark void of 
atheism !"* The apostle Paul tells us of the great Jehovah, 
that " the invisible things of Him from the creation of the 
world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are 
made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they 
(who deny them) "are without excuse." Rom. i. 20. 

But how can that statement be just — how can we know 
khat David speaks truly when he says : " The heavens declare 
the glory of God, and the firmament showeth his handi- 
work :" how can we learn the being, wisdom, power, and 
goodness of God, if the senses, through which alone we can 
receive evidence of these attributes of the Creator, are not to 
be credited in their testimony ? Nay, if the truth of tran- 
substantiation be insisted ou, contradictory to the senses as it 

* Godkin's " Guide from the Church of Rome to the Church of 
Christ." 



OF TRANSUBSTANTIATION. 5 

confessedly is : if four of the senses solemnly declare that it 
is false : if the eye looks at the wafer, and says it is not flesh, 
— at the cup, and declares it is still wine : if we apply the 
organ of smell, and the nostrils unite their testimony with 
that of the eye, in declaring that neither flesh nor blood is 
there : if we taste the wafer, and drink from the cup, and 
then appeal to the sense of touch, and taste and touch unite 
with their two sister senses in declaring that bread and wine 
alone are present : if this testimony is not to be trusted, then 
we maintain that the apostles had no evidence of the divine 
mission of Jesus of Nazareth, and Christianity itself cannot 
be proved to be from God. 

For how was it that Jesus himself proved that he was the 
true Messiah ? Did he not say : " The same works that I do " 
(referring to his miracles) " bear witness of me, that the 
Father hath sent me." John v. 36. When John the Baptist 
was drawing near to the time of his death, and when he was 
desirous to introduce and transfer his disciples to Jesus, he 
sent two of them to Christ, with this inquiry upon their lips : 
"Art thou he that should come, or do we look for another V 
These disciples came to Jesus ; and, by an appeal to their 
senses, he convinced them that he was indeed that glorious 
Prince, the latchet of whose shoes John was not worthy to 
unloose — that he was indeed that Sun of righteousness, of 
whom John said : " He must increase, but I must decrease ;" 
in whose superior glory his own splendor was to be eclipsed, 
as the morning star fades away before the blaze of the open- 
ing day. " Go, and show John again," says Christ, " those 
things which ye do hear and see : the blind receive their 
sight, and the lame walk, the lepers are cleansed, and the 
deaf hear, the dead are raised up, and the poor have the 
gospel preached to them." Matt. xi. 4, 5. 

And perhaps, "while he speaks, a blind man comes, led 
by the hand of a little child. Into those sightless eyes the 
light of heaven has never entered : to him the earth was but 
a place of stumbling, the glorious heavens one universal blank; 
but Jesus looks in compassion, stretches out his hand, touches 
those dark eyes, and in a moment a world of beauty around 
him and of glory above him starts into being ; and, like the 
sons of God in the morning of creation, he shouts forth the 
overflowings of gratitude and joy 
1* 



6 THE ROMISH DOCTRINE 

" Next, a leper all diseased draws near, with pain in every 
step, and hideous loathsomeness in every feature : the crowd 
recede in sympathetic horror from the danger of his infectious 
touch ; but there is one that shuns him not — that one is Jesus. 
Again he stretches out the hand of power, touches him whom 
not even a father, or mother, or wife would touch, and in a 
voice of gentlest mercy says : * I will, be thou clean ;' and, as 
the hand of Moses plucked out of his bosom on Horeb, as 
Naaman emerging from the waters of the Jordan, his flesh has 
become as the flesh of a little child, the deformity of the living 
skeleton has disappeared, the beauty of manhood blooms on 
his countenance, and renovated health rejoices in every vein. 
" But even now there is a sad procession passing by this 
scene of joy — it is the procession of the dead: mourning 
friends are there. But who is she, sorrowful above them all ? 
She is the lonely widow : the husband of her youth is gone : 
one only son was left, who was all the world to her, but he too 
is also dead : his father's grave is waiting for him ; and oh ! 
that mother weeps as widowed mothers only weep. But Jesus 
sees her, and has compassion on her: he touches the bier, 
and the bearers stand still : then he says : ' Young man, I say 
unto thee, Arise!' The dead sits up and begins to speak; 
and Jesus delivers him to his mother/'* 

Now we ask, How was it that these and all other miracles 
of Christ were substantiated ? Simply by an appeal to the 
testimony of the senses. And so was it with regard to the 
resurrection of Christ. " If Christ/' says the apostle Paul, 
(1 Cor. xv. 14, 15,) "be not risen, then is our preaching 
vain, and your faith is also vain. Yea, and we are found false 
witnesses of God j" because " we have testified of God that 
he hath raised up Christ." What evidence, we ask, had these 
" witnesses" with regard to the resurrection of Christ? The 
very evidence, and no other, which Boniish doctors tell us we 
must reject when we look upon the host on the altar ! '" H« 
was seen," says Paul, "of Cephas, then of the twelve : alter 
that, he was seen of above five hundred brethren at once : 
after that, he was seen of James, then of all the apostles 
And last of all he was seen of me also, as of one born out of 
due time." 1 Cor. xv. 5-8. 

* Sermon by Dr. II. Cooke, "The Sacrifice of the Mass," Belfast, 
1845. 



OF TRANSUBSTANTIATION. 7 

"But," says the Roman casuist, "did not Christ say to 
Thomas, l Blessed are they that have not seen, and yet have 
believed V " As if this language was designed to teach that 
we are to believe in contradiction to our senses I No, we dare 
not thus libel the Son of Glod. The fault of Thomas lay not 
in refusing to believe when there was no proof — that were no 
fault at all, but a duty; but it consisted in his refusing to give 
credit to the testimony of his brethren. He was not blamed 
for distrusting the senses, but because he would not trust any- 
body's senses but his own. The Lord Jesus condescended to 
satisfy his incredulity with the kind of evidence which he 
wanted : he said, " Reach hither thy hand, and thrust it into 
my side ; and be not faithless, but believing." But his de- 
mand was not less unreasonable, nor less worthy of rebuke. 
" Blessed are they," said Christ, " that have not seen, and 
yet have believed." Few of Christ's disciples have ever been 
favored with the evidence of their senses to his resurrection 
as Thomas was. No Christian on earth can say, " I have seen 
the Lord." But millions of his people can say, "Whom hav- 
ing not seen, we love : in whom, though now we see him not, 
yet believing, we rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of 
glory;" and it is to this faith in an unseen Saviour that a 
blessing was promised when Jesus said, " Blessed are they 
that have not seen, and yet have believed." Mark ! Christ 
did not say, " Thomas, because thou hast sesn my hands and 
feet, because thou hast put thy fingers into the print of the 
nails, thou hast believed; and blessed shall those millions be, in 
after-times, who shall give up their senses and implicitly be- 
lieve that a piece of bread is my flesh, and a cup of wine is 
my blood !"* Will any Roman Catholic say that Christ meant 
this ? or that he made the slightest allusion, in the statement 
addressed to Thomas, to transubstantiation, or the sacrifice of 
the mass ? or that he pronounced a blessing on those who re- 
ject the testimony of those senses which He himself as the 
great Creator has bestowed, without whose testimony we could 
have no evidence at this day that the miracles of Christ were 

* " Credulity is certainly a fault, as well as infidelity ; and he who 
said, 'Blessed are they that have not seen, and yet have believed,' 
hath nowhere said, ' Blessed are they that have seen, and yet have not 
believed;' much less, 'Blessed are they that believe directly contrary to 
what they see.' " — Tillotson's Sermons, p. 279. 



8 THE ROMISH DOCTRINE 

ever wrought — that his resurrection is not an idle tale — that 
the gospel is not a fable and a cheat — or that there is any 
solid foundation on which a poor guilty, polluted sinner can 
build his hope for a heaven of love and purity, and an eter- 
nity of joy and glory ? 

Transubstantiation, then, cannot be true; otherwise 
Christianity is false. If the credibility of the Christian re- 
ligion has its foundation laid in the miracles by which our 
Lord appealed to the senses of men, then we must refuse to 
credit transubstantiation against the testimony of the senses ; 
because, if we do so, we take away the very corner-stone of 
the temple of God's truth 

The consecrated wafer, we are told by the council of Trent, 
contains " the body and blood, soul and divinity, of our Lord 
Jesus Christ." Take up this wafer — you are told it is a 
man — I ask, can you hold a man in your hand ? You look 
upon it — its shape is circular : you measure it — it may be a 
little more or less than an inch in diameter : weigh it — it 
amounts to a few grains : you taste it — it is comparatively 
sweet : you subject it to chemical analysis — it yields the 
ordinary constituents of flour and water. So of the conse- 
crated cup — you find its original color, odor, and quantity, 
exactly as they were before the asserted transformation. We 
have a choice to make, a conclusion to form. Shall we 
believe the senses which God gave us ? or, shall we believe the 
statement which a man makes to us ? Surely your reply 
must be, " We will believe God rather than man."* 

What is transubstantiation ? It is the change of one sub- 
stance into another. We ask the Komish priest to give us a 
case of real transubstantiation, such as we find examples of in 
the word of God. The rod of Moses was thrown down upon 
the ground before Pharaoh, and became a serpent. The water 
of theNile was turned into blood. At the marriage at Cana, 
in Galilee, our blessed Lord turned water into wine. Now, in 
each of these cases there was a real instance of transubstan- 



* " It might well seem strange if any man should write a book to 
prove that an egg is not an elephant, and that a musket-ball is not 
a pike. It is every whit as hard a case to be put to maintain that 
what we see, and handle, and taste to be bread is bread, and not the 
body of a man, and what we see and taste to be wine is not blood." 
— Tillotson's Sermons, p. 2(12. 



OF TRANSUBSTANTIATION. 9 

tiation. But what effect, in support of his divine mission 
from Jehovah, the God of Israel, would Moses have produced 
in the minds of Pharaoh and his courtiers, if he had thrown 
down his rod on the ground, and, while it still remained and 
appeared a rod, he had asserted that it was a serpent ? Or, 
if no transubstantiation had really passed upon the river of 
Egypt — and yet Moses had dared to say that the change was 
effected, that the Nile was turned into blood, while all men's 
senses rebelled against the fiction, would he not have been 
mocked at as a man beside himself ? would he not have been 
scouted as an impostor? and would proud Pharaoh, in the 
presence of that humble man, ever have trembled on his 
throne? Again, if at the marriage at Cana in Galilee, when 
our Lord had said to the servants, " Pill the water-pots with 
water," and " they filled them up to the brim," and he again 
said to them, "Draw out now, and bear unto the governor of 
the feast, and they bare it," — can we believe, if Christ had 
gone in after these servants to the banqueting-room, and the 
governor of the feast had tasted what was presented, and with 
all his guests had found that it was water, that he would have 
been satisfied by Christ's assuring him it was wine ? No, but 
because he knew it was wine by the testimony of his senses, 
" the governor of the feast called the bridegroom, and saith 
unto him, Every man at the beginning doth set forth good 
wine, and when men have well drunk, then that which is 
worse ; but thou hast kept the good wine until now." Or, can 
we think that if there had not been a real transubstantiation, 
attested by the senses of all the guests, and of the disciples 
too, it would ever have been recorded, " This beginning of 
miracles did Jesus in Cana of Galilee, and manifested forth 
his glory; and his disciples believed on him?" John ii. 11. 

II. We now proceed to prove that the doctrine of transub- 
stantiation is contrary to reason. 

Let it be remembered, that arguments drawn from reason 
are not, as Romanists would have us believe, unscriptural, or 
without Divine warrant and authority. Our Lord himself 
appealed to reason, when, in his sermon on the Mount, he 
taught the doctrine of a particular providence. He said to 
his disciples, " Behold the fowls of the air : for they sow not, 
neither do they reap, nor gather into barns ; yet you* Heavenly 
Father feedeth them. Are ye not much better than they ? 
5 



10 THE ROMISH DOCTRINE 

Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow : they toil not, 
neither do they spin ; and yet I say unto you, that even 
Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. 
Wherefore, if Grod/ ; he says, again appealing to their reason, 
" so clothe the grass of the field, which to-day is, and to- 
morrow is cast into the oven, shall he not much more clothe 
you, ye of little faith ?" Matt. vi. 26, 28, 30. How many 
poor saints have been comforted in their trials, through this 
appeal to their reason ! 

Again, when the apostle Paul stood on Mars' Hill, preaching 
to the idolatrous citizens of Athens, we find that he appealed 
to their understandings in favor of the doctrine of one God, 
in opposition to the gods many and lords many whom they 
worshipped. (Acts xvii. 24-29.) And even when he wrote 
to a Christian church, he did not attempt to bear them down 
with his apostolical authority; but he said, " I speak as to wise 
men : judge ye what I say." 1 Cor. x. 15. Let it not, 
therefore, be said that Protestants are ascribing to reason 
undue honor, or appealing to it as a judge in this controversy 
contrary to the will of Grod. 

But it is said transubstantiation is a great and incompre- 
hensible mystery, and therefore faith must receive it, as it is 
beyond the ken of reason. It is very true that there are some 
things; incomprehensible, of whose existence we cannot have 
the slightest doubt. We cannot, for example, explain the 
nature of the mysterious connection which binds body and 
soul together ; nor disclose the secret power of that volition at 
whose promptings we move our limbs, or carry our thoughts 
from one subject of consideration to another. We cannot 
explain the connection that exists between the formation of 
the bud and the expansion of the flower, the sowing of the 
seed in spring and the golden sheaves of the harvest, All 
these things, however, we know as matters of fact. They are 
beyond the reach of reason to explain, but they are not con- 
tradictory to reason. And this is the answer to the argument, 
sometimes brought by Roman Catholics, when, in supporting 
the doctrine of transubstantiation, they say — (and in doinsrso 
they take up a Socinian weapon, and surrender the truth of 
O-od to its enemies) — "The doctrine of the Trinity is con- 
trary to reason." We reply, the Bible reveals the existence 
of the Triune Jehovah as a great fact; but the Bible does not 



OF TRANSUBSTANTIATION. 11 

scy that three are one, or that one is three, in one and the 
same sense of the words. The doctrine of the Trinity is 
above reason, but not contradictory to reason. 

Now, apply this to the question before us. We are told, 
that in every wafer or consecrated host, a whole Christ, body 
and blood, bones and sinews, soul and divinity, is present — 
really present, on a thousand altars, and received by tens of 
thousands of communicants throughout the world at the same 
time. Now, what does reason say to this ? We answer in the 
words of Pascal : u If we shock the principles of reason, our 
religion will be absurd and ridiculous." Christ had, and 
Christ has, only one bod} 7 ; and if transubstantiation be true, 
we must believe that a finite substance, such as a body is, can 
be in two different places at the same time. The body of 
Christ is one : it is the body that was born of the virgin, the 
body which was wearied by toil, and often exhausted by 
hunger and thirst : the body which agonized in the garden, 
and which was nailed to the cross : the body that lay in the 
grave, .which is now ascended, and is glorified at the Father's 
right hand in heaven. 

We may be told that, because it is a glorified body, it may 
therefore be present in a thousand or more places at once. Ad- 
mitting that a great change has passed on the body of Christ, as 
upon the bodies of Enoch and Elijah, who were translated and 
glorified, and such as shall pass upon the body of every saint at 
the morning of the resurrection, yet, whatever that change 
may be, it does not and it cannot destroy its identity, nor 
annihilate the properties of the body, as such. A finite sub- 
stance cannot be made infinite by any change, nor have the 
power of being in different places at the same time. 

Here we pause, to notice an argument sometimes brought 
in support of the doctrine of transubstantiation — an argument 
drawn from a passage where it is said that Christ appeared to 
His disciples in the upper chamber "when the doors were 
shut." We ask, How does this bear upon the question ? If 
any thing is to be proved by it in reference to the subject 
under discussion, it must be clearly established that Christ's 
body was both in the chamber and out of it at the same time; 
for the doctrine of transubstantiation teaches that his body 
can be in heaven and on earth at the same time. At the 
period to which the passage just quoted refers, Christ was on 



12 THE ROMISH DOCTRINE 

earth, not in heaven, nor was he yet glorified : there was no 
mass said, no t ransubstantiation pretended, and in the cham- 
ber — (which it is not said he entered miraculously, but whose 
"doors were shut for fear of the Jews") — he showed hia 
disciples the "hands and feet" of the one body which had 
been crucified. (John xx. 19.) 

Again, did not Christ always tell his disciples, as the time 
of his death and resurrection drew nigh, that his bodily pre- 
sence must ere long be 'withdrawn from them? Did he not 
say, " In my Father's house are many mansions — I go to pre- 
pare a place for you ?" John xiv. 2, 3. " It is expedient for you 
that Igo away ; for if I go not away, the Comforter will not come 
unto you; but if I depart, I will send him unto you." John 
xvi. 7 Did he not lead them out as far as Bethany? and 
whilst he blessed them, did not a cloud receive him {that is, 
bodily) out of their sight ? Did not the angels say, " Ye men 
of Galilee, why stand ye gazing up into heaven ? this same 
Jesus, who is taken from you up into heaven, shall so come 
in like manner as ye have seen him go into heaven V Acts i. 
11. And is it not declared by an inspired apostle, "Whom 
the heaven must receive until the times of restitution of all 
things ?" Acts iii. 21. Is not his second coming announced 
in connection with a bodily manifestation ? " Behold, he 
cometh with clouds ; and every eye shall see him : they also that 
pierced him shall wail because of him." Bev. i. 7 And, but 
that Christ is absent from his Church, would the Lord's Sup- 
per ever have been instituted ? From age to age his disciples eat 
and drink in commemoration of Christ, and they at the same 
time continue, and shall continue, to " show forth his death 
until he come," — and no longer ; because, " when he appears 
a second time, without sin unto salvation," he shall be with 
his saints, and they shall be for " ever with the Lord." 1 
Thess. iv. 17 Now, if Christ be on ten thousand altars, if 
his whole body and blood be received by millions in the sacri- 
fice of the mass, then the Scripture testimony is not true : he 
is not absent from his Church, the heavens have not received 
him, and He whose name is " the Faithful and True Witness" 
was guilty of falsehood when He declared to his disciples, 
"The poor always ye have with you, but me ye Juice not 
aha j/s " John xii. 8. 

"But," says the Romanist, " Transubstantiation is not 



OF TRANSUBSTANTIATION. 13 

impossible, because the Scriptures declare that l all things are 
possible with God.'" Now, we reply (with reverence, but 
with boldness) that this is a statement that is not unlimited 
in its application. Do not the Scriptures declare that " it is 
impossible for God to lie V So likewise, we know, God can- 
not sin himself, nor tempt others to sin : he cannot make truth 
falsehood, or falsehood truth : " he cannot deny himself." 
Truth, as well as power, is one of his attributes. A contra- 
diction cannot be true ; for this would be the endorsement of 
a falsehood by Him who will eternally exclude from his pre- 
sence every one " that loveth and maketh a lie. " God cannot 
make a lie, otherwise he must hate himself: neither can he 
make one body which is found in one place to be at the same 
time found, as that one and the same body, in ten thousand 
other places ; for even were mere power adequate to the task, 
truth would not permit it, as involving a practical falsehood.* 
Nor will it avail the Romanist to say, that God is omni- 
present, he is here and everywhere, and that therefore the 
body of Christ may be at once in many places. There is no 
parallelism whatever in the illustration. God as such is an 
infinite, Spirit : every body is bounded matter. The attributes 
of the one bear no proportion to the attributes of the 
other. When Christ was seen by Stephen in his glorified 
humanity at the right hand of God, he could not at that time 
have been present in bodily shape in any other place save 
where the dying martyr saw him, simply because the body is 
bounded, and would cease to be a body were it capable of be- 
coming unbounded. Let it be remembered, we are here 
speaking of the manhood of Christ, and that this is pecu- 
liarly the question that bears upon the subject now under 
discussion. Although Christ has two natures, they continue 
distinct — God and man in one person; and each retains its 
own peculiar attributes ; and, therefore, well and truly has it- 
been said by a distinguished theologian, " To suppose that 
divine properties are communicated to the human nature of 
Christ, is to confound the Creator with the creature ; and it 
may be confidently affirmed to be impossible even fcT Omnipo- 
tence to make that infinite which is finite. "f 

* Carson's " Transubstantiation Impossible." 
f Carson, Idem. 



14 THE ROMISH DOCTRINE 

Again, if we must receive the doctrine of transubstantiation, 
we must also believe that a part is equal to the whole ! 
According to the doctrine of the Church of Rome, the bread, 
after consecration, is the whole Christ, and the cup is the 
whole Christ — yea, every crumb of the bread is the whole 
Christ, and every drop of the wine is the same. The council 
of Trent has decreed (Canon 3) " That the * body of Jesus 
Christ is entirely contained in the sacramental Eucharist, under 
either species ; and, after separation, under every part of this 
species." Hence it follows, that if any one of the communi- 
cants divided the wafer into ten parts and swallowed them, 
he would have ten human bodies at once in the stomach. 
And aU these made out of one body. And, after all, there 
is but one body of Christ. Could infatuation go farther 
than this ? 

Again, we must believe, if this declaration be true, that 
that which exists already may begin to exist; and that it is 
possible to create that which has already been created. The 
body of Christ, since he was born of the virgin, has existed 
upwards of 1800 years ; but, according to the Romish doc- 
trine, the priest gives it existence, forms it out of bread and 
water, every time he says mass ! Thus Pope Urban II. (A. D. 
1097) blasphemously spoke of the priest's hands as " those 
hands which created Grod !" 

Further, if this doctrine be true, we must believe that a 
thing may exist without its essential attributes. Christ is 
divested of these in the wafer : he has not the power of 
thought, feeling, and motion, which Christ's body and soul 
confessedly have ; and yet his " body and soul" are said to 
be in the wafer. 

Again, if we receive this doctrine, we must also believe the 
contradiction, that the attributes of a body may exist without 
the substance to which they naturally adhere. In the mass, 
we are told, " the qualities" of the bread and wine exist after 
the bread and, Wine are changed into the body and blood of 
Christ ! 

Further/we must admit that when Christ, as Rome has it, 
" said the first , mass" — when he said, taking a piece of 
bread, " This is my body," the moment he uttered the words, 
it was changed into his body and blood, and that he actually 
held his own body in his own hand ; nay, that the body which 



OF TRANSUBSTANTIATION. 15 

sat at the table with his disciples, the hand of which gave 
away the Eucharist to them — the body that remained at the 
table after they had eaten and drunk, was the same body as 
that which the disciples received. 

Surely, after this review, we may boldly aver that no war- 
rant for the dogma of transubstantiation can be found in Holy 
Scripture. 

III. We therefore proceed to show that transubstantiation 
is contrary to the word of God. 

A Romish author writes thus : — " I would then incline to 

say, with St. Thomas Aquinas — 

' In touch, taste, sight, although deceived we be, 
The word of God is quite enough for me : 
What God declares is true, I must believe ; 
The word of truth itself cannot deceive.' " 

Here certainly there is great apparent veneration for the 
word of God; but the writer takes it for granted that the 
testimony of Scripture and the testimony of the senses 
contradict each other. Now both these witnesses are com- 
municated to us and commissioned by the same God : their 
testimony, therefore, cannot be contradictory. " If the God 
of Scripture be the God that made man, there is every security 
that he would not give one revelation by the senses to prove 
himself a liar by the revelation of the Bible. Such an opin- 
ion is inconsistent with the supposition that the God of nature 
is the God of grace. A demon, if he had power to make a 
man, and to communicate any thing like human faculties or 
human senses, might be suspected of giving deceitful senses 
and unfaithful faculties; but we will not be guilty of the 
blasphemy of ascribing such a work to a God of truth and 
love."* The real opposition, we say to the Romanist, is be- 
tween your CJJiurch and the senses — not between Christ and 
the senses. 

But the objector says again, "I cannot but believe the doc- 
trine of transubstantiation, for Christ says, ' This is my body/ 
and 'This is my blood.' " Dr. Wiseman accordingly declares, 
in his published Lectures, " It is impossible for me, by any 
commentary or paraphrase that I can make, to render our 
Saviour's words more explicit, or to reduce them to a form 
more completely expressing the Catholic doctrine, than they 

* Dr. Carson. 



16 THE ROMISH DOCTRINE 

do of themselves : ' This is my body/ and ' This is my blood.' 
The Catholic doctrine touches that it was Christ's body, and 
that it was Christ's blood. It would consequently appear as 
though all we had to do were, simply and exclusively, to rest 
at once on these words, and leave to others to show reason 
why we should depart from the literal interpretation which we 
give them." (Lect. xv. p. 174.) Now we shall speedily give 
the reader a " reason why we should depart from this literal 
interpretation." We shall do so on the principle elsewhere 
laid down by Dr. Wiseman himself as the very " groundwork 
of the science of interpretation ;" which is this, " That when 
we read any book, or hear any discourse, our object is to 
ascertain what was passing in the author's mind when he 
wrote or spoke those passages — that is to say, what was the 
meaning he himself wished to give to the expressions he then 
wrote or uttered." 

In the case before us, Christ is the author of the words, 
"This is my body," and " This is my blood." In order to 
ascertain their real meaning, Dr. Wiseman tells us we must 
try to ascertain "what was passing in the author's mind.'' 
To assist in this, let us inquire into Christ's usual mode of 
expressing his thoughts, as illustrated by some of his other 
discourses. Thus, for instance, in Matthew's Gospel, we find 
him saying to his apostles, " Enter ye in at the strait gate ;" 
we find him warning them against " casting pearls before 
swine." He tells them, " Beware of false prophets, which 
come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they arc raven- 
ing wolves." He calls himself "the bridegroom," and his 
disciples "children of the bride-chamber." He speaks of the 
" harvest," and of " laborers." He tells his disciples to go 
to the "lost sheep of the house of Israel." Now, does not 
every Romanist admit that Christ in all these passages speaks, 
not literally, but figuratively ? It is not only true that he used 
figures when speaking to the people— that he spoke always to 
the multitude in parables; but it is true also that he spoke to 
his disciples in figurative language — yes, to those very dis- 
ciples to whom at the table he said, " This is my body," and 
" This is my blood." 

Moreover, if we grant for a moment that the literal is the 
true interpretation, then the words of consecration, " This is 
my body," would turn the bread into the body only of Christ. 



OF TRANSUBSTANTIATION. 17 

But there would thus be wanting " the blood, the soul, and 
the divinity of Christ/' which according to Home are present 
in the host. In like manner, the words, " This is my blood,'' 
if they are to be taken literally, necessarily exclude the body, 
soul, and divinity. Either the words are to be taken literally, 
(as Dr. Wiseman demands,) or they are not. If they are, then 
" This is my body " means, This is my body, and nothing else ; 
and " This is my blood " means, This is any bloody and nothing 
else. If Dr. Wiseman chooses the letter, he must abide by 
the letter, and then three fourths of transubstantiation arc 
wanting. 

Again, if the literal sense is to be taken, the wine is not 
transubstantiated, but the cup in which the wine is, "This 
cup is the new testament in my blood." 1 Cor. xi. 25. Not 
one word is said about the wine, "the whole substance" of 
which, according to the Roman doctrine, is changed in the 
act of consecration by the priest. To this it may be added 
that if the literal sense is to decide, neither the cup nor the 
wine is turned into the blood, but into the new testament. 
"This cup is the new testament in my blood." The literal 
interpretation, then, is fatal to the cause of the Romish 
Church. 

Dr. Blake, an Irish Roman Catholic bishop, in a note on the 
words, " This is my body, this is my blood," writes thus : — 
" He does not say, ' This is the figure of my body,' but ' This 
is my body.' Absolutely, ' This is my body,' which implies 
transubstantiation."* Now, let us try Christ's words by the 
canon that is here laid down. He said to his disciples, " Ye 
are the salt of the earth;" and to Peter, (JSu ei petros,) 
" Thou art a stone." He did not say to the one, " Ye are 
like salt," but, " Ye are the salt of the earth;" nor to the 
other, " Thou art like a stone," but, " Thou art, a stone." 
And if saying " This is my body," make the bread his body, 
and "This is my blood," make the wine his blood, then, when 
Christ said to his disciples, " Ye are the salt of the earth," 
they must have been turned into pillars of salt ; and when he 
said to Peter, Su ei petros, he must have been petrified, tran- 
substantiated into a stone. 

The same argument applies still more strongly to the 
expressions, " I am the true Vine," John xv. 1 ; " I am the 

* Douay Testament, with annotations. Newry. Robert Greer, 1838. 

5* 



18 THE ROMISH DOCTRINE 

Way/' John xiv. 6 ; "lam the Door," John x. 9 ; " The 
bright and morning star," Rev. xxii. 16. Was Christ literally 
a vine tree ? Was he a way, a door, a morning star ? The 
truth is, in all such cases the verb " to be," naturally and 
obviously means, to signify, or represent. Therefore, in per- 
fect harmony with Christ's own mode of speaking at other 
times, we say, that when he took bread, and said, " This is my 
body," he meant, "This represents my body;" and when he 
said, " This cup is the new testament in my blood," he meant 
that it represented his blood. The verb "to be" is thus 
rendered in every other place in Scripture where the form of 
expression is precisely that used by our Lord at the institution 
of the Supper. For example : " The seven good kine are seven 
years," — that is, they represent seven years; "the seven 
good ears are seven years;" "the seven empty ears shall be 
seven years of famine," Gen. xli. 26, 27 ; " the three branches 
are three days," Gen. xl. 12 ; " the three baskets are three 
days," Gen. xl. 18. In Daniel's vision, " The fourth beast," 
it is said, " shall be the fourth kingdom," Dan. vii. 23 ; " the 
rough goat is the king of Grecia," and "the great horn that 
is between his eyes is the first king," Dan. viii. 21. Here, 
if we must take this as literal transubstantiation, we should 
have branches and baskets changed into days, cattle turned 
into years, a beast into a kingdom, a goat and a horn into a 
king. When Paul says, again, "This Agar is Mount Sinai," 
Gal. iv. 25, was the woman transubstantiated into a mountain ? 
When Jesus said, " The seven stars are the angels of the 
seven churches; and the seven candlesticks which thou sawest 
are the seven churches," Rev. i. 20; do these words prove 
that a minister is really a star, or that a candlestick has been 
changed into a church? If the words, "This is my body," 
teach the doctrine, all these other passages teach it too. And 
yet no reader would ever think of attaching to them such a 
meaning as this. 

Moreover, it is worthy of observation that Christ's words 
were used when he instituted an ordinance, which, like the 
passover, was to be symbolical in its character. " Whilst, 
therefore, he was distributing the bread and wine, the thought 
could not but rise in the minds of his disciples, 'What can 
this mean? 1 They did not inquire whether what they saw 
was really bread, or whether another body lay hid in the 



OF TRANSUBSTANTIATION. 19 

interstices of the bread ; but, what the action signified, and 
of ivhat the bread and. wine were the memorials and repre- 
sentatives."* 

We have thus examined in what sense our Lord's words are 
to be taken, agreeably to what Dr. Wiseman himself declares 
to be the best rule of interpretation, namely, the ascertaining 
in what sense the language in question must have been under- 
stood by those to whom it was addressed. We are led therefore 
to the inevitable conclusion, that when the disciples heard 
these words, "This is my body,' ' and " This is my blood," 
they could apply no other meaning to them than that to which 
they had always been accustomed when similar language was 
employed — that is, a symbolical and figurative meaning. 

The Church of Rome says, that after consecration the fluid 
in the cup is not wine, but blood. Yet our Lord, at the very 
time when he instituted the holy feast, expressly taught that it 
was wine : "I say unto you, I will not drink of this fruit of 
the vine, until that day when I drink it new with you in my 
Father's kingdom." Matt. xxvi. 29. In like manner, after the 
supposed consecration of the bread, the apostle Paul states that 
it is still bread : "The bread which we break, is it not the 
communion of the body of Christ?" 1 Cor. x. 16. And, 
again, "We are all partakers of that one bread," ver. 17. 
And, again, " For as often as ye eat this bread and 
drink this cup, ye do show the Lord's death till he come," 
xi. 26; and, again, " Whosoever shall eat this bread and 
drink this cup unworthily, shall be guilty of the body and 
blood of the Lord." ver. 27. And, again, " But let a man 
examine himself, and so let him eat of that bread," ver. 28. 
Here the apostle not once, but five times declares the bread 
"after consecration" to be still bread. The doctrine of tran- 
substantiation therefore must be false. And yet the council 
of Trent has decreed, that " if any man shall say that in the 
Eucharist there remains the substance of bread and wine 
together with the body and blood of our Lord, let him be 
accursed." 

Let us add to all this, that in no case is the verb "to be" 
employed in Scripture to signify transubstantiation. We 
challenge any man to produce a sentence from the Bible, or 
any other book, in which the verb to be, in any of its forms, 

* Wetstein. 



20 THE ROMISH DOCTRINE 

indicates a change of one substance into another. It is not 
said of Moses, for instance, that he cast his rod on the ground, 
and it was a serpent, but that it became a serpent, inasmuch 
as there was a real change, in that case, of one substance into 
another. When Christ changed the water into wine, it is not 
said the water icas wine, but the ruler of the feast tasted of 
the water "that teas made wine." Now, where in the New 
Testament is there a single passage in which the bread and 
wine are said to become, or to be made, or to be turned, or 
changed into, the body and blood of Christ ? The reply must 
be, "There is none !" 

Finally, the doctrine of transubstantiation is by Romanists 
confidently maintained by an appeal to the words of Christ, 
John vi. 53—56 : " Then Jesus said unto them, Verily, 
verily, I say unto you, except ye eat the flesh of the Son of 
man, and drink his blood, ye have no life in you. Whoso 
eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, hath eternal life; 
and I will raise him up at the last day. For my flesh is meat 
indeed, and my blood is drink indeed. He that eateth my 
flesh, and drinketh my blood, dwelleth in me, and I in him." 

Dr. Wiseman applies this" passage to the Eucharist, and he 
charges Protestants with "the neglect of a sovereign com- 
mand — a neglect," he says, "to which is attached a fearful 
penalty," namely, " Unless ye eat the flesh of the Son of man, 
and drink his blood, ye have no life in you." 

In reply to this, we say, first, that these words have no 
reference to the Lord's Supper. The discourse was uttered 
by our Lord about a year before the institution of the Lord's 
Supper; and at the time it was uttered, none of his hearers 
could possibly have understood him to have referred to that 
sacrament. The reader will find in John vi. 4, sufficient 
evidence that the passover was near at hand ; and the many 
events that happened between that and the death of Christ, 
the space of time that was required, and the whole facts of 
the history, prove that it was not the same passover at which 
Christ instituted the Lord's Supper. 

In the second place, if, as Romanists insist, the words are 
to be interpreted literally, then they will prove, not that bread 
is turned into Christ's body, but that Christ's body is turned 
into bread. "I am the Bread of life;" "I am the living 
Bread which came down from heaven;" "For my flesh is 



OF TRANSUBSTANTIATION. 21 

meat indeed, and my Wood is drink indeed." He is first 
spoken of as "bread," then as "flesh;" accordingly, the 
bread must have been turned into flesh: " which words," 
says Usher, referring to ver. 55, "being the most forcible of 
all the rest, and those wherewith the simpler sort are most 
commonly deluded, might carry some show of proof that 
Christ's flesh and blood should be turned into bread and wine, 
but have no manner of color to prove that the bread and wine 
are turned into the flesh and blood of Christ."* 

In the third place, the eating of the flesh and the drinking 
of the blood of the Son of man, here mentioned, are not 
carnal eating or drinking, but the spiritual feeding of the soul 
on Christ by faith. In proof of this, we find that again and 
again the blessings of the gospel are set forth in Scripture 
under the figure of meat and drink. In Proverbs ix. 1-5, 
we read, " Wisdom hath builded her house : she hath hewn 
out her seven pillars : she hath killed her beasts : she hath 
mingled her wine : she hath also furnished her table. She 
hath sent forth her maidens : she crieth upon the highest 
places of the city, Come, eat of my bread, and. drink 

of the wine which I have mingled." In Isaiah lv. 1, 2, 
" Ho, every one that thirsteth, come ye to the waters, and he 
that hath no money, come ye, buy, and eat; yea, come, buy 
wine and milk without money and without price. Wherefore 
do ye spend money for that which is not bread? and your 
labor for that which satisfieth not ? hearken diligently unto 
me, and eat ye that which is good, and let your soul delight 
itself in fatness." Now, these passages are admitted on all 
sides to have a spiritual reference to the blessings of the gos- 
pel. Again, we read in the New Testament, Matt. xxh. 2-4, 
" The kingdom of heaven is like unto a certain king, which 
made a marriage for his son, and sent forth his servants — say- 
ing, Tell them which are bidden, Behold, I have prepared my 
dinner : my oxen and my fatlings are killed, and all things are 
ready : come unto the marriage." Here, again, all will admit 
that the blessings of the gospel are set forth. So also when 
it is written, "Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst 
after righteousness ; for they shall be filled :" what is this but 
the provision which God has made for the spiritual nourish- 
ment of his people's souls unto life everlasting ? Now, the 

* "Answer to a Jesuit." 



22 THE ROMISH DOCTRINE 

figure in all these passages is precisely the same as in this 
passage in John vi. If, therefore, in this chapter we are to 
understand eating the flesh and drinking the blood literally, 
we must interpret the same expressions literally in other 
passages : so that men must literally eat "beasts" and "fat- 
lings" and "oxen," and drink "wine and milk." There is no 
limitation in the one case more than in the other. The inter- 
pretation, then, in either case is spiritual ; and, thus inter- 
preted, the language of Christ is in beautiful harmony with 
the other kindred revelations of the word of God. 

When we look at the object and design of the passage and 
of Christ's whole discourse, how obvious is all this ! A short 
time before, he had performed the wondrous miracle of feeding 
five thousand with five loaves and two small fishes. The 
multitude eagerly followed him : they asked him for a sign, 
that they mi«;ht see and believe ; they said, "Our fathers did 
eat manna in 'the desert : as it is written, He gave them bread 
from heaven;" and then Christ institutes a comparison be- 
tween the manna and himself : the one was earthly food, the 
other heavenly ; the one was for the body, the other for the 
soul. "The bread of God," he says, " is He which cometh 
down from heaven, and giveth life unto the world." Then 
they said, "Lord, evermore give us this bread !" Mark the 
reply of Christ : " I am the Bread of life : he that cometh 
to me shall never hunger; and he that believeth on me 
shall never thirst." What can be more evident than that 
coming to Christ and believing on Christ are here, by his own 
interpretation, the very same as eating and drinking? There- 
fore when it is said, " Except ye eat the flesh of the Son of 
man and drink his blood, ye have no life in you;" and, 
" Whoso eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, hath eternal 
life-" it is the same truth that is elsewhere expressed, "He 
that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life ; and he that 
believeth not the Son shall not see life : but the wrath of God 
abideth on him." John iii. 36.* 

* If the words in John vi., "Except ye eat the flesh of the Son of 
man, and drL> his blood, ye have no life in you," are to betaken 
literally, the c\ is essential to salvation. Without the cup it is 
impossible to drin.. His blood. Cardinal Cajetan felt tin's so strongly, 
that in his commenta v on verse 53 he declares that "these words do 
not deliver a precept o. eating and drinking the sacrament of the 



01? TRANSUBSTANTIATION. 23 

This is not a Protestant interpretation invented to evade a 
difficulty. We have proved it to be in strict harmony with 
Scripture. But we go a step farther : we turn round on Dr. 
Wiseman, who threatens all who deny that this passage ap- 
plies to the Eucharist with "a fearful penalty/' and we tell 
him, that he is forgetting his solemn oath to interpret 
Scripture only "according to the unanimous sense of the 
Fathers." The Fathers are against this interpretation : — 

In commenting on the words of Christ, " Doth this offend 
you? What and if ye shall see the Son of man ascend up 
where he was before ? It is the Spirit that quickeneth; the 
flesh profiteth nothing : the words that I speak unto you, they 
are spirit, and they are life/' — Athanasius says, "That the 
Saviour used these words that his hearers might learn that 
those things which he spake were not carnal, but spiritual. 
For how many could his body have sufficed for meat, that it 
should be made the food of the whole world? But therefore 
it was that he made mention of the Son of man's ascension 
into heaven, that he might draw them from this corporeal con- 
ceit, and that hereafter they might learn that the flesh which 
he spake of was celestial meat from above, spiritual nourish- 
ment to be given by him." 

Tertullian says, " Because the Word was made flesh, it 
therefore was to be desired for causing of life, and to be de- 
voured by hearing, and to be chewed by understanding, and 
to be digested by faith." 

Origen says, "There is in the New Testament also a 
letter which killeth him that doth not spiritually conceive the 
things that be spoken. For if according to the letter you do 
follow this same, which is said, 'Except ye eat the flesh of 
the Son of man, and drink his blood/ this letter killeth." 

In his Tractates upon John, Augustin says, " Why pre- 
parest thou thy teeth and thy belly ? Believe, and thou 
hast eaten." . " For this is to eat the living bread, to believe 
in him. He that believeth in him, eateth."* 

Clemens Alexandrinus regards the expressions of eating 

Eucharist." — Quoted in Gibson's "Preservative," vol. ii. p. 158, or 
vol. ix. p. 49, Ed. of Society for Promoting the Religious Principles 
of the Reformation. 

* Arch. Usher, "Answer to a Jesuit," pp. 44, 45, where the origi- 
nals are given. 



24 



THE ROMISH DOCTRINE 



Christ's flesh and drinking his blood as equivalent to the 
apostle Paul's feeding with milk. "Our Lord '(he says) in 
all these things is for the enjoyment of those who believe in 
Him." Lib. i. c. 6. p. 105. 

This same passage in John has been understood and ex- 
plained in a figurative sense, as signifying spiritual eating and 
drinking, by other fathers — Ignatius, Cyril, Chrysostom, Bede, 
and Theophylact.* 

Three general councils — Constance, Basil, and Trent — give 
the weight of their authority to the spiritual meaning of this 
text by their sanction of those orators appointed to express 
their opinions on this subject. So it is testified by Labbeus, 
the Jesuit historian of those councils. j" 

Albertin has enumerated thirty Roman pontiffs, cardinals, 
Bishops, or commentators, who interpret this part of John's 
Grospel in a spiritual sense, and reject the idea of its applica- 
tion to the sacrament. This was the explanation of the two 
popes, Innocent and Pius. According to Innocent III., "Our 
Lord, in this passage, speaks of spiritual manducation. His 
body is eaten spiritually— that is, in faith." Comeditur 
spiritualiter, id est, in jide.% 

Pius II. concurs— and, if possible, in still more explicit 

language— with Innocent: "The Son of God," says this 

pope, "treats there not of sacramental, but spiritual drinking. 

The communion was not then instituted; and how, therefore, 

could they eat and drink Jesus, but by faith ? Those who 

believed in him were the persons who ate his flesh and drank 

his blood; for faith is the only means of such participation. 

Jesus, on the occasion, spoke in figurative language." § 

If a lingering doubt remain in the mind of any reader, we 
ask him to & look°at the words, and ponder them again. If the 
words "Except ye eat the flesh of the Son of man, and 
drink 'his blood, ye have no life in you," John vi. 53, be 
applied to the Eucharist, then they absolutely exclude from 

* Ignatius ad Trail, Cyril. 293. Aug. de Doctrin. 316; and Ser- 
ial rhrvs Horn. 47. Bede in Cor. x. Theoph. in John vi. 
1 fLabbU X vi.ll41 ; xvii..930;xx.613. 
t Innocent, De Myst. Miss. iv. 14 

lln Lenfr. ii. 211, 242. bee the elaborate, accurate, and able 
work of Edgar, on the "Variations of Popery," c. xii. on Transub- 
etantiation. 



OP TRANSUBSTANTIATION. 25 

salvation all those who lived before it was instituted, as well 
as all infants and others who have never partaken of it ! And, 
further, when Christ says, " Whoso eateth my flesh, and 
drinketh my blood, hath eternal life," it follows that of the 
millions that have died in communion with the Church of 
Rome, every one has been saved because he received the 
Eucharist. Romanists will themselves refuse to believe this, 
for they will confess that many a communicant in the Church 
has died in " mortal sin," which necessarily leads to eternal 
damnation. 

And now our argument is closed. We have sought to 
establish what we believe to be the truth, and to overthrow 
the dogma of transubstantiation by an appeal to the senses, to 
reason, and to the word of God. 

To Roman Catholic readers we say, We ask you to weigh 
well the evidence that has now been laid before you. As you 
shall answer for it at the great day of judgment, we call upon 
you to reject a dogma which is contradicted by the threefold 
and harmonious testimony of the senses, of reason, and of the 
infallible word of God. The true members of the incorrupt 
early Church at Rome, whose " faith was spoken of through- 
out the world," (Rom. i. 8,) were utter strangers to this 
doctrine. The apostle Paul, who wrote an epistle to them, 
never mentions it ; and as for Peter, (who, you are taught, 
was their first bishop, nay, the first pope,) in none of his 
sermons, nor in either of his epistles, does he make a single 
allusion to this dogma, which your Church regards as a 
fundamental article of faith. Not only was it unknown to the 
fathers and Pope Gelasius, but. even among the growing cor- 
ruptions of Christendom, it was not even broached for more 
than 800 years after Christ.* Will you insist that " the 
Church" may be right after all ? If so, Christ, the Head of 

* The author of this heresy was Paschasius Radbert, who published 
a treatise on the subject. It met at once with powerful opposition 
from Scotus, Bertram, and others, A. D. 831. The celebrated Raba- 
nus Maurus, Archbishop of Mayence, in writing against the novel 
doctrine, says, '■'■Some indeed of late, not thinking rightly of the sacra- 
ment of our Lord's body and blood, have said that the very body and 
blood of our Lord, which was born of the virgin, in which our Lord 
suffered on the cross, and» rose again out of the grave, is the same 
that is taken from the altar ; which error we have opposed as we are 
able."— (Epi«t. ad Herib, quoted in the "Full View," etc., p. 189.) 
3 



26 THE ROMISH DOCTRINE 

the Church, and his apostles, must have been wrong, and rea- 
son and the senses are liars. Will you believe that this is 
the Church of God, "the pillar and the ground of truth/' 
which endorses such a monstrous error, and says of every one 
that denies it, " Let him be accursed !" " Consider," we say 
to Roman Catholics, " and show yourselves men." "Literally 
to eat the flesh of the Son of man, and to drink his blood, 
St. Austin declared would be a great impiety, a heinous 
wickedness/' and in the Eucharist, he says, "We receive the 
likeness of Christ's flesh and blood, that so, neither truth may 
be wanting in the sacrament, nor pagans have occasion to 
make us ridiculous, for drinking the blood of one that was 
slain."* Cicero, a heathen orator and philosopher, says, 
"When we call the fruits of the earth, Ceres, and wine 
Bacchus, we use but the common language, but do you think 
any so mad as to believe what we eat to be God?"^ Aver- 
roes, an Arabian philosopher, (who lived after this doctrine 
was entertained among professing Christians,) said, " I have 
travelled over the world, and have found divers sects, but so 
sottish a sect I never found as is the sect of Christians — 
because with their own teeth they eat him whom they wor- 
ship."\ Arise, then, and shake off the fetters of a juggling§ 
superstition, and abjure at once and for ever a doctrine which, 
above all others, has been the occasion of the bloodiest perse- 
cution. || If a carnal eating of Christ's body and blood were 
possible, could this profit or nourish the soul ? Come now to 
Jesus, feed on him hi/ faith, and then shall you know that 
"he that oateth His flesh, and drinketh His blood, dwelleth 
in Christ, and Christ in hi in." May this blessed indwelling 
be vouchsafed to you, and to every one who reads these pages ! 
"I bow my knees unto the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, 
of whom the whole family in heaven and earth is named, that 
he would grant you, according to the riehes of his glory, to 

* De Consocr. (list., Li sect., Utrum. 

f De Nat. Deo. lib. ?>. 

% Dion. Carth. 4 dint. 10, Art. 1, quoted by Tillotson. 

§ "Hocus pocus" is a corruption of "Hoc est corpus," by way of 
ridicule of the priests of Home in the trick of transubsiantiation. 

j| "This," says Archbishop Tillotson, " hath boon in the Church of 
Rome the burning article. More Christians have been murdered for 
the denial of it, than perhaps for all the other articles of their reli- 
gion."— Works, p. 277. 



OF TRANSUBSTANTIATION. 27 

be strengthened with might by his Spirit in the inner man ; 
that Christ may DWELL IN your hearts BY FAITH; that 
ye, being rooted and grounded in love, may be able to compre- 
hend with all saints what is the breadth, and length, and 
depth, and height; and to know the love of Christ, which 
passeth knowledge, that ye may be filled with all the fullness 
of God/' Eph. iii. 14-19. 



CANNIBALISM OF TRANSUBSTANTIATION. 

"The popish clergy/' says Dr. Edgar, "as they make, so 
they eat their god, and transfer him to be devoured by others. 
The papist adores the god whom he eats, and eats the god 
whom he adores. This divinity is tasted, masticated, swallowed, 
and, accidents excepted, digested. The partisan of Popery, 
in this manner, worships and swallows a god of pastry, which, 
if made big enough, would furnish a breakfast for himself or 
for his dog. 

" The manducation of the sacramental elements, if transub- 
stantiation be true, makes the communicant the rankest can- 
nibal. The patron of the corporeal presence, according to his 
own system, devours human flesh and blood ; and, to show the 
refinement of his taste, indulges in all the luxury of canni- 
balism. He rivals the polite Indian, who eats the quivering- 
limbs and drinks the flowing gore of the enemy. The Papist 
even exceeds the Indian in grossness. The cannibals of 
America or New Zealand swallow only the mangled remains 
of an enemy, and would shudder at the idea of devouring any 
other human flesh. But the partisans of Romanism glut them- 
selves with the flesh and blood of a friend. The Indian only 
eats the dead, while the Papist, with more shocking ferocity, 
devours the living. The Indian eats man of mortal mould 
on earth. The Papist devours God-man, as he exists exalted, 
immortal, and glorious in heaven. Papal exceeds even Egyp- 
tian stupidity. The Egyptians indeed worshipped sheep, oxen, 
garlic, and onions. But even these deluded votaries of idolatry 
and superstition, in all their barbarism and indelicacy, ab- 
stained from eating the objects of their adoration. But the 
believer in the corporeal presence at once worships and 



23 THE ROMISH DOCTRINE OF TRANSUBSTANTIATION. 

swallows, adores and devours his Deity. This oral manduca- 
tion would, shocking to say, make Jesus more inhuman than 
Saturn. Saturn, according to Pagan mythology, devoured 
his own offspring. Jesus, according to the Popish theology, 
swallowed his own flesh. He ate the consecrated bread and 
drank the hallowed wine, which he administered to his 
apostles. Such are the horrors which follow in the train of 
this absurdity. 

" This is the light in which the corporeal presence has been 
■viewed, not only by Protestants, but also by Jews, Mahome- 
tans, and heathens. < Christians/ said Crotus, the Jew, ' eat 
their god.' ' I have travelled over the world,' said Averroes, 
the Arabian philosopher, ' and seen many people ; but none 
so sottish and ridiculous as Christians, who devour the god 
whom they worship.' Cicero entertained a similar opinion. 
1 Whom/ said the Roman orator, ' do you think so demented 
as to believe what he eats to be God !' Roman philosophy 
shames and confounds Romish theology. 

il Aimon, Lanfrane, Hugo, Durand, Aquinas, Bernard, Alcuin, 
Pithou, Faber, Lyra, and the Trentine Catechism, have indeed 
endeavored to gild the Cannibalism of Popery. These admit 
the horror of feeding on human flesh and blood in their own 
forms. But the sacramental elements, say they, appear under 
the species of bread and wine, that conceal the human sub- 
stance, which, in consequence, becomes (these theologians 
seem to think) a great delicacy/' 



Kmahrffle, Tenn. : Published by E. Stevenson & P. A. Owen, for the M. E. Church, South. 



No. 29. 



IDOLATRY OF THE CHURCH OF ROME. 



The Holy Scriptures reveal the existence of one glorious 
Being, self-existent, omnipotent, omniscient, immutable, and 
infinitely holy, just, and good, to whom alone men are to offer 
worship and adoration. " It is written, Thou shalt worship 
the Lord thy God, and him only shalt thou serve." Luke iv. 
8. The guilt of idolatry, therefore, is contracted when the 
honor and glory which belong to God are given to a creature : 
hence it is said of heathen nations that they " worshipped and 
served the creature (rather than*) more than the Creator, who 
is blensed for ever/' Rom. i. 25. 

Now the design of this paper is to prove that the Church 
of Rome, which calls herself " the mother and mistress of all 
Churches," is guilty of idolatry. We are well aware that this 
is a very serious and awful charge, and that Romanists 
vehemently repudiate and deny it.f We have no pleasure in 
making it. It is our hearts' desire and prayer to God for 
Roman Catholics, that they may be saved ; but the interests 
of truth and the glory of God are at stake. Let the reader 
candidly weigh the evidence and authorities now to be laid 
before him, and then (as before Him who shall be final Judge) 
say, Is it not true that the Church of Rome is guilty of flagrant 
and unblushing idolatry ? 

We open the subject by aflirming that the Romish doctrine 
of mediation and intercession, carried on in heaven by angels 
and saints on behalf of sinners upon earth, is a direct denial 
of a great fundamental truth set forth in Holy Scripture : 

* Douay Version. 

| "Idolaters! Know ye, my brethren, the import of this name? 
that it is the most frightful charge that can be laid to the score oi 
any Christian?" (Wiseman's Thirteenth Lecture, p. 93.) 

6 



2 IDOLATRY OF THE CHURCH OP ROME 

£ £ » ■? f life v m » — unLXtS; 

but by Me. John xiv. 6. "Through Him (Christ we 

both have access by one Spirit unto the Father." Ephes. if 18 

The following is the authoritative decree of the council of 

Trent on the subject now before us :-"The holy synod com- 

mands all bishops, and others whose office and business it is 

to teach, that they diligently instruct the faithful, concerning 

the intercession and invocation of saints ; teaching them that 

the saints reigning with Christ do offer up their prayers to 

(rod for men : that it is good and profitable humbly to invocate 

the saints, and to fly to their prayers, help, and assistance, for 

the obtaining of blessings from God through his Son Jesus 

Christ. 

It is afterwards declared that "if anyone shall teach or 
think contrary to these decrees, let him be accursed."* 

In the creed of Pope Pius IV., to which every Roman 
Catholic priest subscribes and swears his solemn adherence, is 
the following :— " I do constantly hold that the saints reigning 
together with Christ are to be invocated." 

The Church of Rome has adopted and made her own, in 
this matter, one of the leading characteristics of ancient Pagan 
idolatry. It was the creed of the ancient heathen philosophers, 
that demons, (daimones,) by which they understood inferior 
deities — the spirits of departed heroes and eminent men- 
were mediators with the great gods, with the Pneuma, or Su- 
preme Deity, the Father of gods and men. 

"The demons/' says Plato, "are between God and man, 
interpreting and carrying things between God and man; 
bringing before the gods the prayers and sacrifices of men. 
bringing to men the orders of the gods, and their rewards for 
their sacrifices. God is not mixed with them, but through 
them is all converse and intercourse between the gods and 
men maintained, whether the latter are asleep or awake." 

To the same purpose are the words of Apuleius, In Deo 
Socratis : — "All things are thought to be done by the power 
and authority of the celestial gods, but by the means, despatch, 
and administration of the demons." 

* Cone. Trid., Sess. 25. 



IDOLATRY OF THE CHURCH OF ROME. 3 

The apostle Paul (1 Tim. iv. 1) expressly declares, that 
in the latter times there shall be some that shall depart or 
apostatize from the faith, "giving heed to seducing spirits and 
doctrines — " it is translated in our Bibles " doctrines of devils," 
but in the original it is daimonion, that is, doctrines of or 
concerning demons. He indicates that there would be the 
revival in the Christian Church of the old Pagan doctrine 
just described ; and we charge it upon the Church of Rome 
that she is guilty of this sin in the present day. 

In that remarkable work, "Middleton's Letters from Rome," 
the entire conformity in this respect between the idolatry of 
Paganism and the adoration of saints is presented with all that 
force which the facts of history necessarily bear with them. 
This author tells us that the noblest heathen temple now re- 
maining in the world is the Pantheon or Rotunda at Rome, 
which was dedicated byAgrippa "To Jove and all the gods/' 
and was consecrated by Pope Boniface IV "To the Virgin 
and all the Saints." " With this single alteration," he says, 
"it serves exactly for the Popish as it did for the Pagan wor- 
ship. For as in the old Pagan temple every one might find 
the god of his country, and address himself to that deity whose 
religion he was most devoted to, so it is the same thing now : 
every one chooses the patron whom he likes best. And one 
may see here different services going on at the same time at 
different altars, with distinct congregations around them, just 
as the inclinations of the people lead them to the worship of 
this or that particular saint. And as it is in the Pantheon, 
so it is in all the heathen temples that remain at Rome. They 
have only pulled down one idol to set up another, changing 
rather the name than the object of their worship. Thus, the 
little temple of Vesta, near the Tiber, is now possessed by the 
Madonna of the Sun : that of Fortuna Virilis, by Mary the 
Egyptian : that of Saturn, by St. Adrian : that of Romulus 
and Remus, by two other brothers, Cosmus and Damianus : 
that of Antoninus the Godly, by Laurence the Saint." — Mid- 
dleton's Letters, 4:th edit. pp. 161, 2, 4.* 



* Cardinals Perron and Richelieu, with other learned Romish 
authors, admit that the invocation of saints was not practiced for the 
first 'diree centuries. The reason they assign is a remarkable one — 
because praying to the saints would have been too much like the 



* EOLATRY Or THE CHURCH OF ROME. 

Pb«JT h ^ aDOt ^ er * ekncnol J analogy between ancient 
?f™ "t 1 T jdOTl Romanism > which^ worthy of notice 
W r^ f : ~ In ^ "»«ent mythology, as every classical reader 
— - o it w*s taught that there were gods who presided oyer 
r^ciJar conntnes and cities, and gods who were the patrons 
or j ^rr:^ar trades and professions ; and so it is in the calen- 
dar vi tae Popiih saints. TTe are all familiar with the names 
of ^t. (reoree of England, St. Andrew of Scotland, and St 
TatTK- ot Ireland. So there is St. Sebastian of Portugal, 
£:. Ja-es ot Spain, St. Denis of France, and St. Mark of 
\ en:ce. _£o with regard to trades, St. Luke is the patron of 
peters, fct. Crispin of shoemakers, St. Catherine of scholars, 
and st. John of lawyers. St. Anthony has the charge of 
swine, and St. (Jallus of geese and sheep. 

To sret rid of the charge of idolatry, the doctors of the 
Piomiih Church attempt to make a threefold distinction as to 
the kinds of worship which they offer. The first, they tell 
us. is latria. the highest kind of worship, offered to the Su- 
preme Cod alone : the second is dulia, that inferior kind of 
worship which they offer to created beings : the third is liy- 
perdulia, which is that higher kind of worship which they 
offer to the Virgin Mary, as the most exalted of all creatures. 
It is written, "Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and 
him only shalt thou serve/' True religion, therefore, recog- 
nizes but one Deity, and one service — one kind of religious 
worship. "We do not refer to that outward respect and 
reverence to men which sometimes in our own language is 
called worsh ip ; but we speak of religious worship, and we 
affirm that there is but one kind recognized in the word of 
God. He stands before us august and awful, unapproachable 
in his majesty, and suffering no rival. He alone claims our 
allegiance — '" Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy 
heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy strength." Luke 
x. 27. And as for these terms latria and dulia, they are 
used promiscuously in the Greek text of the Old Testament; 
and. instead of that distinction being maintained which Koine 
teaches, there are instances where both are equally applied to 



Paean idolatry, and so have obstructed the spreading of the gospel, 
the~heathen justifying themselves by this practice.— See Sermons at 
Salters' Hall, 1735, Dr. Hughes' Sermon, p. 81. 



IDOLATRY OF THE CHURCH OF ROME. 5 

spiritual supreme worship. Deuteronomy xxviii. 47, 48. 
When Samuel exhorted Israel " to prepare their hearts unto 
the Lord, and to serve Him only/ 7 the word employed is not 
that which is said to indicate supreme worship, but (as ren- 
dered in the Septuagint) is that which Komanists tell us be- 
longs only to saints : yet Samuel declares that it is to be given 
to God alone. 1 Sam. vii. 3.* And when Paul (Rom. xii. 
11) urges the Church at Rome to be "fervent in spirit, serv- 
ing the Lord," he uses the Greek word douleuontes, indicating 
again that the service and worship of God are rendered in 
that very way which Rome says is but the inferior worship 
that is to be given to the creature. And we ask, What can 
the apostle mean in that sublime and immortal truth which we 
have already quoted — " There is one God, and one Mediator 
between God and men, the man Christ Jesus" — what can he 
mean, if, according to the Romish doctrine, there are a great 
number of mediators ? Well and truly has it been said, that 
" when God was revealed in ancient times in the unity of his 
Godhead, the ancient Pagans offended against him by feigning 
the existence of and worshipping more gods than one; but 
that when he revealed himself in Christ Jesus, reconciling the 
world unto himself, Romanists have offended against him by 
worshipping more Christs than one — an almost infinite num- 
ber of mediators, who should plead for them by their inter- 
cession, and atone for them by their merits and sufferings." 
And, as evidence of this, we find in the "Abstract of the 
Douay Catechism," taught to young persons in the Romish 
Church, that the child, when questioned as to the prayers 
offered, after specifying several forms of devotion, is taught 
to say — 

" Then I conclude by desiring our Blessed Lady to be a 
mother to me; and by recommending myself to my good 
Angel, and to all the court of heaven." — p. 76. 

And in the " Catholic School Book" (p. 171) the direction 
is given, " Offer your prayers to the blessed Virgin, your 
patron, and all the saints together." 

* Bellarmine (de Sanct. Beat. 1. 1, c. 12) and Vasquez (Disp. 93) 
are compelled to acknowledge that the distinction is unscriptural, and 
tli at both the Hebrew and Greek words are promiscuously used. " It 
is one and the same virtue of religion (says Nicholas Serrarius, in 
Let. 2, 9, 27) which containeth both latria and dulia." 



6 IDOLATRY OF THE CHURCH OF ROME. 

Now we know that arguments are attempted to be drawn 
from Scripture by Roman Catholic writers to support this doc- 
trine of the Invocation of Saints. If it be true that Scripture 
sanctions the practice of prayer to saints, it is surely remark- 
able that, while there are no less than five hundred places in 
which we find prayer, and the subject of prayer, spoken of in 
the Holy Scriptures, Dr. Wiseman himself, with all his learn- 
ing and ingenuity, can only find four passages in the Old 
Testament, and five in the New, from whence he can possibly 
draw an inference suited to his views.* A very brief exami- 
nation will show that not one of these lends the least coun- 
tenance to the Romish doctrine of the invocation of saints and 
angels. The first four passages are taken from the book of 
Daniel, and are as follows : — 

"And I heard a man's voice between the banks of Ulai, 
which called, and said, Gabriel, make this man to understand 
the vision." Dan. viii. 16. 

"Yea, whiles I was speaking in prayer, even the man 
Gabriel, whom I had seen in the vision at the beginning 
being caused to fly swiftly, touched me about the time of the 
evening oblation. ,; Dan. ix. 21. 

" Then said he unto me, Fear not, Daniel ; for from the 
first day that thou didst set thine heart to understand, and to 
chasten thyself before God, thy words were heard, and I am 
come for thy words. " Dan. x. 12. 

"And at that time shall Michael stand up, the great prince 
which standeth for the children of thy people." Dan. xii. 1. 

Now, independently of the fact that Michaelf here men- 
tioned in this last verse is none other (as is believed by some 
of the best commentators) than Christ himself, it will be ob- 
served it is not said that prayer is offered to him. With re- 
gard to the first passage, where one man is said to speak to 
another, there is no mention of prayer being addressed to 
either. In reference to the other passages, there is not the 

* Two passages are quoted by him from the books of Tobit and 
the Maccabees. These were never acknowledged as part of the 
Canon by the Jewish Church, nor yet by the early Christian Church. 
The one book is full of childish absurdities, the other approves of 
suicide. 

f Augustin says, " Michaelem intelligo Christum — " I understand 
Michael to be Christ. — Homil. 9 in Apocalypse. 



IDOLATRY OF THE CHURCH OF ROME. 7 

least intimation that prayer had been addressed to any other 
than to God himself. Accordingly, we find in the sacred re- 
cord that the angel Gabriel was caused to fly swiftly, and 
touched Daniel at the time of the evening oblation ; and he 
said, " Daniel ! thy prayer is heard." But to whom had 
that prayer been addressed? Why, to Grod himself — that 
sublime and beautiful prayer containing the words, " O Lord, 
hear : Lord, forgive : Lord, hearken and do : defer not, 
for thine own sake, my God; for thy city and thy people 
are called by thy name." Dan. ix. 19. 

In these passages, then, all that is taught about angels is 
just the doctrine that is more fully developed in the New 
Testament, and which is stated in the words of the apostle 
Paul to the Hebrews : "Are they not all ministering spirits, 
sent forth to minister for them who shall be heirs of salva- 
tion ?" Heb. i. 14. 

But let us see what are the five texts which Dr. Wiseman, 
in his lectures, adduces from the New Testament. The first 
is — 

Luke xv. 7 and 10, "Likewise I say unto you, there is 
joy in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner that 
repenteth." 

Now we ask any plain unprejudiced reader, if you had read 
that sentence for the first time in any book, if you met with 
it for the first time in the word of God, would it ever enter 
into your mind that it taught you the doctrine that you were 
to pray to angels ? Angels, it is argued, know what is done 
on earth, and therefore prayers may be addressed to angels. 
But what is the substance of the passage ? There are three 
beautiful parables, two besides the prodigal son. The first is 
that of the lost sheep. When the shepherd has brought it 
back on his shoulders rejoicing, he calls his friends and neigh- 
bors, and says, " Rejoice with me; for I have found my sheep 
which was lost." The second is that of the lost piece of 
money ; and when the woman has swept the house diligently 
until she has found it, she calls her friends and neighbors to- 
gether, and says, "Rejoice with me; for I have found the 
piece which I had lost." Thus, so far as the parable teaches, 
as the shepherd tells his neighbors of the finding of the wan- 
dering sheep, and as the woman tells her neighbors of the 
lost piece of money restored and found, so God reveals to hia 



8 IDOLATRY OF THE CHURCH OF HOME 

angels that another brand has been plucked out of the burn- 
ing — that another captive of Satan has been set free — that 
another trophy of grace has been brought to his feet ; and 
then the choir of angels raises the shout of praise, and "there 
is joy in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner 
that repenteth." 

Again, Dr. Wiseman founds an argument on Matt. xxii. 
80, " For in the resurrection they neither marry, nor are 
given in marriage, but are as the angels of God in heaven." 

Let us remember what is the true meaning of this passage. 
It contains a statement of what the saints shall he after the 
resurrection — not what they are now, in their condition as 
disembodied spirits. Invocation is addressed by Romanists 
to disembodied spirits ; but this passage refers only to saints 
when they shall receive their glorified bodies, and therefore 
does not bear on the subject before us. But even if we did 
admit that the spirits of the just made perfect are now equal 
to angels, we ask, What has that to do with the assertion that 
©ur prayers are to be addressed to them ? 

Further, a third text is adduced — 

Matt, xviii. 10, " Take heed that ye despise not one of 
these little ones; for I say unto you, That in heaven their 
angels do always behold the face of my Father which is in 
heaven." Still, it will be observed that there is not one word 
authorizing prayers to angels. Again, allusion is made to 
Rev. v. 8, "golden vials full of odors, which are the prayers 
of saints." Rut the reference of the whole verse is to the 
mode of worship under the Old Testament dispensation, 
(Neh. xii. 27, Psalm cxli. 2,) and the " vials" evidently 
allude to the prayers offered up under the gospel dispensation, 
through " the Lamb in the midst of the throne," by the 
ministers and members of the Church. 

Last of all, we are referred to 

Rev. viii. 3, 4, "And another angel came and stood at the 
altar, having a golden censer; and there was given unto him 
much incense, that he should offer it with the prayers of all 
saints upon the golden altar which was before the throne. 
And the smoke of the incense, which came with the prayers 
of the saints, ascended up before God out of the angel's 
hand." 

In the Old Testament, again and again, the Lord Jesus 



IMLATRY OF THE CHURCH OF ROME § 

Christ receives tne name of the Angel — the Angel of Grod's 
presence — the Angel that spake to Moses as Grod from the 
burning bush — -the Angel that appeared to Joshua as the 
captain of the Lord's host— -the Angel that wrestled with 
Jacob unto the breaking of day, who was recognized to be 
Grod, and to whom Jacob prayed when he was dying, as the 
Grod before whom his fathers had walked, as the Angel which 
redeemed him from all evil, and whom he asks to " bless the 
lads."* It is Christ, therefore, who comes and stands at the 
altar. There is " given unto him much incense :" as the great 
High Priest, he has gone as our Intercessor within the veil, 
that he should " offer it with the prayers" (or add it to the 
prayers) " of all saints" when they ascend up to heaven, for 
otherwise they would be rejected of the Father. Thomas 
Aquinas, a leading Romish commentator, expressly declares 
that Christ is spoken of in this passage as " the Angel of 
God's presence ;" and the Jesuit Viegas says, "All interpreters 
do confess that by the Angel is meant our Lord Christ. "f 
And of the accuracy of this interpretation there can be no 
doubt, when we remember that the imagery is here drawn 
from the ancient temple : that the golden censer pertained to 
the high priest alone — nay, that at the golden altar in the 
holiest of all, the high priest officiated alone, while the people 
prayed without. Heb. ix. 3, 4, 7. And, therefore, this 
passage proves the very opposite of what it is adduced by Dr. 
Wiseman to establish, even the blessed truth that there is no 
advocate and mediator in heaven but one — the High Priest 
of our profession, the Lord Jesus Christ. 

Here, then, are all the passages which this eminent con- 
troversialist quotes from Scripture in order to prove the pro- 
priety of addressing invocations and prayers to saints aod 
angels in heaven ; and not one of them, as we have seen, sup- 
ports the doctrine. But has he never read those other pas- 
sages in which such a practice is either by implication forbidden, 
or in which it is explicitly condemned ? 

" Call upon me in the day of trouble : I will deliver thee, 
and thou shalt glorify me." Psa. 1. 15. 

* Compare Gen. xlviii. 16-20 with Hosea xii. 3-5, and both with 
Mai. iii. 1; and it will clearly appear that " The Angel" or " Messen- 
ger" was not a created being, but that he was Christ. 

f Apoc. cviii. Sect. 2. 

6* 



10 IDOLATRY OF THE CHURCH OF ROME. 

" Thou that hearest prayer, unto thee shall all flesh 
come/' Psa. lxv. 2. 

" In every thing, by prayer and supplication, let your re- 
quests be known unto God," Phil. iv. 6. 

" If any of you lack wisdom, let him as7c of God," James i. 5. 

And has he never read those other passages, (Col. ii. 18 :) 
u Let no man beguile you of your reward in a voluntary hu- 
mility and worshipping of angels, intruding into those things 
which he hath not seen, vainly puffed up by his fleshly mind :" — 
llev. xix. 10 : where the apostle John says, "I fell at his feet 
[the feet of the angel who had showed him these things] to 
worship him. And he said unto me, See thou do it not : 
I am thy fellow-servant, and of thy brethren that have the 
testimony of Jesus : worship God V 

Where, in the pages of the Old Testament, or in the annals 
of the Jewish people, extending over a period of fifteen hun- 
dred years, do we find one prayer addressed to the spirit of 
the departed Abraham, " the friend of God ;" to the spirit of 
Moses, with whom God talked "face to face, as a man 
speaketh unto his friend ;" to the spirit of Jacob, who, in 
the days of his flesh " as a prince/ 7 had " power with 
God and with men, and prevailed -," to the spirit of David, 
"a man after God's own heart ;" or to Elijah, who, body 
and soul, without tasting the bitterness of death, had been 
translated, like Enoch, to the glory of heaven ? Where, 
in these or other cases, is there a single invocation addressed, 
beseeching a departed servant of God, a patriarch, or prophet, 
or lawgiver, to aid the suppliant on earth by his intercession 
in heaven ? Again, coming down to apostolic times, how is it 
we find that in the primitive Church — when there was a pure 
and uncorrupted faith, guarded by the apostles with jealous 
and holy care — no prayer was ever addressed to John the 
Baptist, to Stephen, to James, the brother of John, each of 
whom, by a bloody and violent death, had been but a short 
time sent to his rest in heaven, and was now wearing a mar- 
tyr's crown ? And in all the writings of the apostles we find 
not one passage counselling or countenancing that which is 
now regarded by the Church of Home as an article of faith 
which cannot be rejected but upon pain of eternal damnation. 

This doctrine of the invocation of saints interferes with the 
blessed truth, that the special work of the Lord Jesus Christ 



IDOLATRY OP THE CHURCH OF ROME. 11 

is to "bring us to God/' 1 Pet. iii. 18. We read that "all 
things are of God, who hath reconciled us to himself by Jesus 
Christ," 2 Cor. v. 18 ; that " He is our peace /' and that 
"through him we have access by one Spirit unto the Father/' 
Ephes. ii. 18. To meet all difficulties, Christ has undertaken 
our cause : he has finished transgression, he has made an end 
of sin, he has made reconciliation for iniquity, and has brought 
in everlasting righteousness, Dan. ix. 24. And when the 
poor Romanist is taught, " Christ is too great, too awful, too 
exalted, too stern in his justice, to be approached by you, a 
guilty sinner/' when Dr. Wiseman says, "The saints look 
down upon you with sympathy : you may turn to them to use 
the influence they necessarily possess with God towards assist- 
ing their frail and tempted brethren on earth :"* what, we 
ask, is the inevitable tendency of such teaching, but that men 
will be led to think that there are others in heaven more 
ready to sympathize with their necessities than " the Good 
Shepherd, who gave his life for the sheep V And is it so, 
that Jesus is not a sufficient and ever-compassionate Advocate ? 
Is it not He whom we hear saying, " Behold, I stand at the 
door and knock : if any man hear my voice, and open the 
door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with 
me V Rev. iii. 20. Is not this the true Days-man, God and 
man, possessed of the nature of Him who has been offended 
and of him who offends, and therefore alone qualified to 
plead ? Is not this the true Kinsman Redeemer, bone of our 
bone, and flesh of our flesh? And are we to be afraid to 
commit our cause to him alone ? Must we go to others, that 
they may plead with him for us ? Is not he " the Mediator 
of the New Testament?" Heb. ix. 15. And is it not written, 
"If any man sin, we have an Advocate with the Father, 
Jesus Christ the righteous V 1 John ii. 1. Does he not de- 
clare, "No man cometh unto the Father, but by me?" John 
xiv. 6. " If ye shall ask any thing in my name, I will do 
it V John xiv. 14. And if there be a " throne of grace" to 
which we are invited, why are we to " come boldly V Is it 
because Mary, or Peter, or Paul, or any saint or angel is there 
to mediate for us ? No : it is because " we have not an High 
Priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirm- 

* Thirteenth Lecture, p. 98. 



12 IDOLATRY OF THE CHURCH OF ROME. 

ities," but one who " was in all points tempted like as wc are, 
yet without sin." " Let us therefore," says the apostle, 
*' come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain 
mercy, and find grace to help in time of need," Heb. iv. 15, 
16.* 

Surely this ought to settle the question. Not only does 
Scripture testify that " there is none other name under heaven 
whereby we must be saved" but that of Christ ; but it teaches 
that we need no other Saviour than him. No, blessed Jesus ! 
be it thine to undertake our cause : Thou art able to save 
them to the uttermost that come unto God by thee : Thou art 
the " Friend that sticketh closer than a brother : Thou art not 
ashamed to call us " brethren :" 

" Friend of the friendless and the faint, 
Where shall I lodge my deep complaint ? 
Where but with Thee, whose open door 
Invites the helpless and the poor?" 

To all this we may add, that inasmuch as Scripture declares 
that omniscience and omnipresence belong to God alone, and 
as, according to the Church of Rome, saints in heaven can 
hear the prayers addressed to them by millions of people from 
different places at the same time, in thus ascribing to creatures 
the incommunicable attributes of Deity, the guilt of idolatry 
is necessarily involved. 

But we proceed to substantiate the charge preferred against 
the Church of Home by proof in detail : 

I. We maintain that the Church of Home is guilty of idol- 
atry in the worship which she offers to the Virgin Mary. 
Here let no Romanist say, Protestants are "the enemies of 
Mary," as they do sometimes tell us, " enemies of the blessed 
mother of God. "f We regard her as a holy saint of God; 

* The subtle distinction framed by the Romish Church between 
"a mediator of redemption," and "mediators of intercession," the 
former character belonging to Christ, the latter to angels and saints, 
is not countenanced by the Scriptures. It is on his sacrifice that Jus 
intercession is based. Re-cause of the completion of his work of re- 
demption, he is now alone within the veil, Rom. viii. ;.'. 1; lleb. x. 14, 
15. Saints cannot share in this work, for this were to rob Christ of 
his glory as a "Priest upon his throne," Zech. vi. IS. 

f See preface to "The Glories of Mary, Mother of God," translated 
from the Italian, and carefully revised by a Romish priest. Dublin. 
Coyne. 1837. 



IDOLATRY Of THE CHtJRCH OF ROME. IS 

and know that she was indeed "highly favored among wo- 
men/' We know that the Lord Jesus Christ, in assuming 
the nature of man, did " not despise the virgin's womb ;" 
but, we ask, where is there a single passage in the New Testa- 
ment in which divine honors are ascribed to her ? or one sen- 
tence, either in the words of Dhrist or of the apostles, which 
in the least degree countenances the notion that she was to be 
throughout all ages venerated and adored as "the Queen ot 
heaven and the Mother of God ?" 

It is remarkable that the Lord Jesus Christ, as if foresee- 
ing the tendency of man, under the corrupting influence of 
Satan's temptations, to pay idolatry to the creature, and espe- 
cially to Mary, has placed on record, by inspired evangelists, 
several incidents in his life, and several statements from his 
own lips, which clearly show that no divine honors were ever 
intended to be paid to her. At the marriage at Cana, in Gali- 
lee, when she would have interfered with his prerogative, and 
dictated to him the time when the miracle was to be wrought, 
he said, " Woman, what have I to do with thee ? Mine hour 
is not yet come," John ii. 4. Again, we read that when a 
certain woman among those that listened to Christ on one 
occasion exclaimed, "Blessed is the womb that bare thee, 
and the paps which thou hast sucked," he replied, " Yea, 
rather, blessed are they that hear the word of God, and keep 
it," Luke xi. 27, 28. On another occasion we find that he 
was told that his mother and his brethren stood without, de- 
siring to speak with him; and he stretched forth his hand 
towards his disciples, and said, "Who is my mother? and who 
are my brethren ? — Behold my mother and my brethren ! For 
whosoever shall do the will of my Father which is in heaven, 
the same is my brother, and sister, and mother," Matt. xii. 
48-50. 

Yet, determined to exalt Mary, extravagant legends have 
been invented and circulated by the advocates of the Church 
of Borne. The fourth volume of Duffy's Weekly Library of 
Catholic Divinity is entitled, " The Life of the Blessed Vir- 
gin Mary, Mother of God, with an exposition of the Rosary, 
etc." The following are the opening sentences : 

" The blessed Virgin Mary was born at Nazareth, in the 
province of Galilee. Her parents, St. Joachim and St. Anna, 
were both of the tribe of Judah ; of the royal stock of David. 
2 



14 IDOLATRY OF THE CHURCH OF ROME. 

It was a sublime dignity and a special favor of heaven con- 
ferred on these holy persons, to give a lost world the Advo- 
cate of Mercy, and to be the parents of the mother of God." 

In order to lay deep the foundation of this system, the 
writers of this book tell us of St. Anna and St. Joachim, her 
parents; and from other bocks we might quote special prayers 
addressed to them, especially to St. Anna, " the mother of 
the mother of Grod !"* But, in addition to this, the Church 
of Rome has lately taken another step. The present pope has 
decreed, as a new article of faith, the immaculate conception 
of the Virgin Mary. Accordingly, in this Life of the Blessed 
Virgin to which we are now referring, it is said : 

" Mary was brought forth into the world, not like other 
children of Adam, infected with the loathsome contagion of 
sin, but pure, holy, beautiful, and glorious, adorned with all 
the most precious graces that became her who was chosen to 
be the mother of Grod. She appeared, indeed, in the weak 
state of our mortality, but in the eyes of Heaven she already 
transcended the highest seraph in purity." 

Now observe that it is here expressly taught that Mary was 
a stranger to the taint of original sin; and elsewhere this 
pamphlet teaches that " she was a perfect model of all vir- 
tues." Now, is not this a blasphemous application to" Mary, 
a creature born in sin like others, of that which is peculiar to 
Christ ? The Church of Rome virtually says, " The holy 
thing born of St. Anna was to be called the Mother of Grod." 
" That holy thing," said the angel to Mary, " that shall be 
born of thee, shall be called the Son of Grod." Scripture de- 
clares of Jesus alone, that he was " holy, harmless, undefiled, 
separate from sinners ;" but the Church of Rome declares the 
perfection of Mary. And what follows from this? Why 
that, being sinless in nature and sinless in life, she needed no 
Saviour — there was no necessity in her case for the applica- 
tion of atoning blood, for the washing of regeneration, and 

* " She was the mother of the mother of God, and the grandmother 
of God himself. In our indigences and our needs we must address 

ourselves by St. Ann to the virgin, and by the virgin to Jesus Christ, 
and by Jesus Christ to God the Father, who can refuse nothing to his 
Son, no more than he can to his mother, or she to hers, who is St. 
Ann."— "An Abridgment of the Prerogatives of St. Ann, Mother of 
the Mother of God," approved by the doctors (of the Sorbonne at 
Paris). London, 1688. Chap. 2. 



IDOLATRY OP THE CHURCH OF ROME. 15 

the renewing of the Holy Ghost. Yet Mary said, " My soul 
doth magnify the Lord, and my spirit hath rejoiced in God 
my Saviour/' Luke i. 46, 47. If Rome's doctrines be true, 
Mary is not a mere human being : she is a goddess, she is 
divine : she is not among the palm-bearing throng who have 
washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the 
Lamb ; and from her lips the song of the ransomed myriads 
does not proceed, " Salvation to our God which sitteth upon 
the throne, and unto the Lamb," Rev. vii. 10. No, accord- 
ing to Rome, she is not a sinner, but she is the Saviour of 
sinners ) not a debtor to mercy, but the Queen of Mercy ; 
not standing " before the throne and before the Lamb," but 
the " Queen of Heaven," enthroned with Christ : she is the 
" woman clothed with the sun, and the moon under her feet, 
and upon her head a crown of twelve stars." The passage of 
Scripture thus perverted is Rev. xii. 1. It is a symbolical 
representation of the Church of Christ, "clothed with the 
sun :" that is, as some interpreters think, blessed with the 
full-orbed glory of the New Testament dispensation ; with 
" the moon under her feet," taking the place of the Old Tes- 
tament dispensation, which was but shadowy, and shone with 
but a borrowed and inferior light ; " with twelve stars upon 
her head :" that is, illuminated by the doctrine of the twelve 
apostles. And if Romanists persist in saying that this is 
Mary, let us remind them that in this very chapter the mysti- 
cal woman is represented as expelled from heaven by a great 
red dragon having seven heads and ten horns — driven into 
the wilderness, and nourished there 1260 days, that is, years !* 
Is this a part of the creed of the Romanists with regard to 
the virgin ? No ; but if they literally apply one portion of 
the prophecy to her, are they not equally bound to adopt the 
other ? 

Let us now mention some of the blasphemous titles applied 
to the virgin, and contrast them with scriptural truth. In 
the Litany of our Lady of Loretto she is styled " the ark of 
the covenant," (we know that the ark was an emblem of 
Christ;) "The gate of heaven," (Christ says, "I am the 
door;") "The morning star," (Christ says, U I am the root 

* " 1 have appointed thee each day for a year," Ezek. iv. 6. 



16 IDOLATRY OP THE CHURCH OF ROME. 

and the offspring of David, and the bright and morning star;") 
" The health of the weak/'' ( u there is barni in Gilead," and 
Jesus is " the physician /') " Refuge of sinners/' (Christ is 
the true city of refuge, " the hope set before us in the gos- 
pel," to which we flee from the sword of avenging justice ;) 
"The comforter of the afflicted/' (Christ is declared to be 
"the Consolation of Israel/') " The help of Christians/' (in 
the Psalms we are taught to say, " I will lift up mine eyes 
unto the hills, from whence cometh my help. My help Com- 
eth from the Lord, which made heaven and earth,") Psalm 
cxxi. 1, 2. 

In the " Garden of the Soul," by Richard Challoner, D. D., 
are the following prayers to the virgin : 

" Hail, Holy Queen, Mother of Mercy, our Life, our Sweet- 
ness, and our Hope ! To thee do we cry, poor banished sons of 
Eve : to thee do we send up our sighs, mournings, and weep- 
ings, in this valley of tears. Turn, then, most gracious Ad- 
vocate, thine eyes of mercy towards us ; and, after this our 
exile is ended, show unto us the blessed fruit of thy womb, 
Jesus, most clement, most pious, and most sweet Virgin 
Mary." 

" We fly to thy patronage, Holy Mother of God ! De- 
spise not our petitions in our necessities ; but deliver us from 
all danger, ever-glorious and blessed Virgin." 

The following are extracts from a work called " The 
Glories of Mary," by St. Alphonsus Liguori, who was canon- 
ized by Gregory XVI. in 1839, and whose life has been 
written, in the warmest terms of commendation, by Dr. Wise- 
man : 

" Mary is the Queen of the Universe, as Jesus is its King. 
Thus, as St. Bernardino observes, 'as many creatures as obey 
God, so many obey the glorious Virgin. Every thing in 
heaven and earth which is subject to God, is also under the 
empire of his Holy Mother."'— (P 281.) " Pity us, then. 
Queen of Mercy ! and think of our salvation. Say not that 
our sins render us unworthy of your aid, for your clemency 
surpasses our malice. Nothing resists your power, because 
the Creator of all honors you as his Mother, regarding your 
glory as his own." " Mary owes her Son an infinite debt of 
gratitude for choosing her as his mother; but it is not less 



IDOLATRY OF THE CHURCH OF ROME. 17 

true to say that Jesus Christ has contracted a species of obli- 
gation towards her, for the human existence he received from 
her; and, in return for this benefit, he honors her by hearing 
her prayers." — (P. 34.) "Let us go, then, Christians, let 
us go to this gracious Queen, and crowd around her throne, 
without being deterred by our crimes and abominations." — 

In the same work is the following form of the dedication 
of a family to the Virgin Mary : 

" Blessed and Immaculate Virgin, Our Queen and our Mo- 
ther, Refuge and Consolation of all the miserable ! Prostrate 
before thy throne, along with my entire family, I choose thee 
for my Lady, my Mother, and my Advocate with God. I 
dedicate myself for ever, with all my family, to thy service. 
Defend us in temptations, deliver us from dangers, provide 
for us in our necessities, direct us in our doubts, comfort us 
in our afflictions, assist us in sickness, and particularly in the 
straits of death." 

Did not Joshua say, "As for me, and my house, we will 
serve the Lord !" But here, in this book, the poor deluded 
Romanist is taught, as the head of his family, to say, "I 
dedicate myself for ever, with all my family, Mary, to thy 
service." 

There is another publication sold by Roman Catholic book- 
sellers, called " The Scapular of our Lady of Mount Carmel 
Explained." In the title-page is the figure of the virgin, 
with the infant Christ in her lap : he is in the act of putting 
over the head and around the shoulders of a kneeling monk 
the scapular of our blessed Lady of Mount Carmel. This 
order, we are told, was introduced into England in the thir- 
teenth century by St. Simon Stock, who was placed at the 
head of the society, "which bears the name of the mother of 
God, and which boasts of having erected the first altar conse- 
crated to her honor." He " employed every means to draw 
men's hearts in devotion to Mary." One day, we are told, 
towards the close of his long life, she appeared to him sur- 
rounded by spirits, with a scapular in her hand, which she 
put over his shoulders with these words : " My dearest son, 
receive the scapular of your order, the sign of my confrater- 
nity, a privilege for yourself and all Carmelites : any one dy- 
ing in this shall not suffer eternal flames. It is a sign of sal- 
2* 



18 IDOLATRY OF TRY) CHURCH OF ROME. 

vation, a safeguard in dangers, a pledge of peace, and of an 
everlasting covenant."* 

There is another tract, called "The Octave of the Holy 
Souls in Purgatory," and " Novena of the Immaculate Con- 
ception of the Mother of God," as practiced in the oratory 
(Komish chapel) in King William street, Strand. In this 
tract seven prayers are addressed to Jesus, to have pity on 
the holy souls in purgatory. Corresponding to these prayers 
to Jesus, there are prayers to Mary, in which the notion is 
conveyed that Christ must be propitiated by her invocation. 
This doctrine is taught in the seductive form of verse : 

"0, turn to Jesus, Mother! turn, 

Ajid call him by his tenderest names : 
Pray for the holy souls that burn 

This hour amid the cleansing flames." 

One of the beautiful titles of the Lord Jesus Christ is the 
" Star," the " Bright and Morning Star," who ushered in on 
our benighted world the dayspring from on high ; but in this 
book of the Scapular he is robbed of his glory, in a hymn 
addressed to Mary as the " Star of the Sea," from which we 
select the following : 

"Deep night hath come down on this rough-spoken world, 
And the banners of darkness are boldly unfurl'd ; 
And the tempest-tossed Church — all her eyes are on thee — 
They look to thy shining, sweet Star of the Sea !" 

The following is still worse : 

" 0, blissful and calm was the wonderful rest 
That thou gavest thy God in thy virginal breast ; 
For the heaven he left, he found heaven in thee, 
And he shines in thy shining, sweet Star of the Sea!" 

In another publication, styled "A Devotion to the Compas- 
sionate Heart of Mary," we are told, among the objects of this 
devotion are : 

" To honor the most holy heart of Mary suffering during 
her whole life, and particularly at the foot of the cross of 

* The scapular may be made both of cloth and serge, but not of 
silk, though it may be lined with silk. The reason of this is, that 
the virgin never wore silk, but woollen, and that of the natural color. 
" The scapular is to be worn continually day and night, and never 
to be taken off till death ; also it is good to be buried with it." 



IDOLATRY OF THE CHURCH OF ROME. 19 

her divine Son, excessive interior torments for the salvation 
of souls." 

Now mark the scandalous and wicked doctrine that is here 
actually taught to Roman Catholics : that while Jesus Christ 
was making an atonement on the cross, Mary, by her agony 
at the foot of the cross, was making atonement too — was suf- 
fering, as this book expresses it, " excessive interior torments 
for the salvation of souls !" 

In opposition to all this, it is written of Christ, that by him- 
self 'he purged our sins, that "his own self bare our sins in 
his own body on the tree," that "he was wounded for our 
transgressions, and by his stripes we are healed." 

In the "Devotion of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, including 
the Devotion of the Sacred Heart of the Blessed Virgin Mary," 
(by Dr. Milner, approved by Pope Pius VII., 12th edition, 
1821,) Romanists are taught, on the pretended authority of the 
Virgin herself, to pray to her that she would, " in the hour of 
death, illustrate and strengthen their souls with the know- 
ledge of the true faith, and instil into them the sweetness of 
divine love." Also to address to her these awful words, 
" Hail, Mary, Lady and Mistress of the world, to whom all 
power has been given in heaven and in earth." 

In " The Daily Companion, or little Pocket Manual," Lon- 
don, 1834, containing an English translation of the prayers 
used at Mass, Services for the Festivals of the Church, Lit- 
anies, etc., in " The Vespers for Sundays" is the following 
hymn : 

"AVE MARIA STELLA. 

"Hail, thou resplendent star, 
Which shinest o'er the main, 
Blest mother of our God, 
And ever Virgin-Queen. 

Hail, happy gate of bliss, 

Greeted by Gabriel's tongue, 
Negotiate our peace, 

And cancel Eva's -wrongs. 

Loosen the sinner's bands, 

All evils drive away, 
Bring light unto the blind, 

And for all graces pray." 



20 IDOLATRY OF THE CHURCH OF ROME. 

Here the titles and the works peculiar to Christ are idol- 
atrously ascribed to Mary. 

We find also in " The Rosary of our Blessed Lady/' as 
ordered by Pope Pius V., that "the devotion called the Ro- 
sary consists of fifteen Paternosters, and one hundred and 
fifty Ave Marias :" that is to say, while fifteen prayers are to 
be addressed to God, one hundred and fifty are to be addressed 
to the virgin. Among the "Mysteries'' to Jbe contemplated 
by the worshipper, we find that the fourth is " The Assump- 
tion," and' the fifth, " The Coronation of the Most Blessed 
Virgin Mary in Heaven." In connection with the last it is 
said, u Let us contemplate, in this mystery, how the glorious 
Virgin Mary was, to the great jubilee and exultation of the 
whole court of heaven, and particular glory of all saints, 
crowned by her Son with the brightest diadem of glory." After 
this, " Our Father," etc., is to be said once : " Hail, Mary," 
etc., ten times. Then follows this prayer: 

" 0, glorious Queen of all the heavenly citizens, we be- 
seech thee, accept this Rosary, which, as a crown of roses, we 
offer at thy feet; and grant, most gracious Lady, that, by thy 
intercession, our souls may be inflamed by so ardent a desire 
of seeing thee gloriously crowned, that it may never die in us 
until it shall be changed into the happy fruition of thy blessed 
sight. Amen." 

Here the beatific vision is not the sight of Jesus, but of 
Mary on the throne. 

With regard to "The Assumption" and "Coronation" of 
the virgin, there is no foundation for them whatever, either 
in Scripture or in history •* and yet these the Church of Rome, 
by the mouth of Bonaventura, requires to be believed, on 
pain of everlasting damnation. " Whosoever will be saved, 
before all things it is necessary that he hold firm the faith 
concerning the Virgin Mary, which except a man keep whole 
and undefiled, without doubt he shall perish everlastingly. 
Whom at length he took (assumpsit) into heaven, and she 
sitteth at the right hand of her Son." 

In the Roman Catholic Breviary, which is the priest's Bible, 
so to speak, and which, under pain of anathemas, he must read 

* See "The Virgin Mary Misrepresented by the Roman Church," 
by Bishop Patrick, in 3d volume of " Gibson's Preservative against 
Popery." 



IDOLATRY OF THE CHURCH OF ROME. 21 

for an hour and a half every day, we find a rubric directing 
that the "Gloria" should be repeated at the end of every 
Psalm, except when otherwise noted. But on the Feast of 
the Assumption — a day set apart to celebrate the imaginary 
translation of Mary, body and soul, to be enthroned Queen of 
Heaven — the Church prescribes, as a substitute for the " Glo- 
ria Patri," an anthem to the virgin. Thus, for instance, at 
the conclusion of the 8th Psalm, when otherwise would be 
chanted, " Lord, our Lord, how excellent is thy name in all 
the earth I" the anthem is : 

" The holy Mother of God is exalted above the choir of 
angels in the heavenly realms. The gates of paradise are 
opened to us by thee, Virgin, who gloriest this day tri- 
umphantly with angels." Rom. Brev. 4 vol. Norwich, 
1830. 

Next in authority to the Breviary, and other standards and 
formularies of the Church, are the writings of the canonized 
saints. Among these, St. Bonaventura stands preeminent. 
He was canonized two centuries after his death by Pope Sixtus 
IV., 14th April, 1482. This pope declared that he so wrote 
on divine subjects, that "the Holy Spirit seemed to have 
spoken in him." Pope Sixtus V., in 1585, ordered Bona- 
ventura's works to be carefully amended, pronounced him to 
be an acknowledged doctor of the Church, and directed his 
authority to be cited and employed in all ecclesiastical discus- 
sions and studies. By this pontiff he is called the " Seraphic 
Doctor." Higher sanction could not be given to any human 
being than has been given to him and his writings. What he 
teaches, therefore, concerning the attributes and worship of 
Mary, must be taken as the teaching of the Church of Borne. 
The most remarkable of his works is the Psalter, that is, 
an edition of the Psalms, throughout which the name of 
Mary is substituted for the name of God. The following are 
extracts : 

Psalm viii. 1 : "0 Lady, our Lady ! how excellent is 
thy name in all the earth, who hast set thy glory above the 
heavens." 

Psalm xxx. : " In thee, Lady, have I trusted : let me not 
be confounded for ever. Into thy hands, Lady, I commit 
my spirit, my whole life, and my last day." 

Psalm xxxi. : " Blessed are they whose hearts love thee, 



22 IDOLATRY OF THE CHURCH OF ROME. 

tLI- 8 " 1 MarJ : thdr SlnS Sha11 be mercifu % blotte <l out by 
Now, we read in the word of God, « I am Jehovah : that is 
my name; and_ my glory will I not give to another." But 
here is a canonized saint, a "seraphic doctor," who blots out 
an distinctions between what is called latria and dalia and 
otters supreme worship, in the very language of the Psalms, 
to the Virgin Mary ! ' 

< The Te Deum, a sublime hymn in honor of the eternal God, 
is also perverted by him : 

"We praise thee, Maker of God: we acknowledge thee, 
Mary the Virgin. 

"All the earth doth worship thee, Spouse of the Eternal 
Father. 

_ "Tothee all angels and archangels, thrones and principali- 
ties, faithfully do service. 

" To thee the whole angelic creation with incessant voice 
proclaim, Holy, holy, holy, Mary, Parent Mother of God, and 
Virgin." 

Again, a blasphemous power, a right to command her Son, 
is ascribed to the virgin by this saint : 

" Therefore, Empress, and our most benign Lady, by the 
right of a mother, command thy beloved Son, our Lord Jesus 
Christ, that he vouchsafe to raise our minds from the love of 
earth to heavenly desires." 

This teaching of Home may be confirmed by the testimony 
of the Rev. A. Vicary, who visited Italy in 1846. At 
Lucca he saw a fresco painting, which so completely repre- 
sented the effect and intention of the Roman Catholic reli- 
gion, that, as he says, " I cannot forbear to detail it minutely 
here:" 

" The virgin is represented as inflicting corporal punishment 
on the youthful Jesus. She holds a rod in one hand, with the 
other she holds the garment of the child. She is in the act 
of inflicting punishment. The child is in alarm, and its eyes 
are eagerly directed to St. Anna, the mother of the virgin, in 
the background, entreating her intercession to escape the cruel 
ordeal. The look of the virgin is not that of affection, but has 
the stern and harsh appearance which we might imagine a 
schoolmistress to have when engaged in a similar occupation. 
Under the picture is written, in very legible characters, ' Jure 



IDOLATRY OP THE CHURCH OF ROME. 23 

Matris, Rege Filio/ (By the right of a mother, though the 
son be a king.)" 

Bernardinus de Busti was the celebrated author of u The 
Office of the Immaculate Conception/' which was confirmed 
by a bull of Sixtus IV., and has since been used by the Church 
of Rome on the 18th December in each year. He wrote vari- 
ous works on the virgin, entitled " Mariale." The following 
are specimens of his teaching : 

" Since the virgin is the mother of God, and God her Son, 
and every son is naturally inferior to his mother, and subject 
to her, and the mother is preferred above and is superior to 
her son, it follows that the blessed virgin is herself superior to 
God, and God himself her subject, by reason of the humanity 
derived from her. 0, unspeakable dignity of Mary, who is 
worthy to command the Commander of all !" — Cologne, 1607, 
part iii. serm. ii. 176; part ix. 605; part xii. serm. ii. 816; 
quoted by the Rev. J. Endell Tyler, B. D. " Worship of the 
Blessed Virgin Mary in the Church of Rome," p. 42 ; Lon- 
don, 1846. 

It is the same Bernardinus who relates the vision shown 
to St. Francis, the founder of the order that bears his name : 

" He saw two ladders that reached from earth to heaven, 
the one red, upon which Christ leaned, from which many fell 
back and could not ascend : the other white, upon which the 
Holy Virgin leaned, the help whereof such as used were by 
her received with a cheerful countenance, and so with facility 
ascended into heaven." 

"More present relief," says St. Anselm, "is sometimes 
found by commemorating the name of Mary, than by calling 
on the name of the Lord Jesus, her only Son :" — which, says 
Archbishop Usher, 

" One of your Jesuits is so far from being ashamed to de- 
fend, that he dareth to extend it to the mediation of other 
saints also, telling us very peremptorily that, as our Lord 
Jesus worketh greater miracles by his saints than by him- 
self, so, often, he showeth the force of their intercession more 
than his own." — Usher's Reply to a Jesuit, p. 495. 

In harmony with all these teachings of canonized saints, is 
the practice of Romanists at the present day. 

Dr. Cumming, in his " Lectures for the Times," gives the 
following perversion of the Lord's Prayer, which he copied 



24 IDOLATRY OF THE CHURCH OF ROME. 

from the original illuminated card sold in the continental 
book-shops, the translation of which from the French runs 
thus : 

" To Mary. — Our Mother, who art in heaven ; hallowed be 
thy name ; thy kingdom come ; thy will be done in earth as 
in heaven. Give us this day grace and mercy : give us the 
pardon of our sins, as we hope for thy unbounded goodness; 
and suffer us not to sink under temptation, but deliver us 
from evil. Amen."* 

In a lecture delivered before the Islington Protestant Insti- 
tute, on the 15th January, 1850, the Rev. Hobart Seymour 
declared, from personal observation, his deep conviction that 
" Mary holds, in the religion of Italy, as lofty a place as Jesus 
Christ holds in the religion of England." He says : 

" To Mary the prayers of the multitude are addressed; to 
Mary the offerings of money and treasure are made ; to Mary 
the children are consecrated ; to Mary is every heart in the 
hour of affliction turned ; to Mary all look for safety and pro- 
tection ;* to Mary is every blessing from heaven ascribed. 
And the religion of Italy ought to be called, not the religion 
of Christ, but the religion of Mary." 

Mr. Seymour expressed this conviction to a priest at Rome. 
" But what was my surprise, when, so far from there being 
any feeling of offence or indignation, he frankly avowed it, 
stating that the religion of Italy might very justly be desig- 
nated the religion of Mary, instead of the religion of Christ !" 

In what an awful condition, viewed in the light of the word 
of Glod, in what a fearful spiritual condition must Rome be, 
where a priest is found to glory in the fact that Rome, instead 
of drawing near to Christ, is drawing nearer and nearer to 
Mary 1 

" Few things," says Mr. Seymour, " impressed me more 
than the manner in which the priesthood are effecting this 
change. They have elevated their legendary traditions to a 

* This is but another form of the blasphemous doctrine taught in 
Scotland, anno 1551, " that we may call the saints our fathers, and 
say, ' Hallowed be your names,'' because God hath made their names 
holy ; and that their kingdom may come, because the kingdom of 
heaven is theirs by possession ; and so of the other petitions. Where- 
by it appeareth that they would have prayers made unto saints as 
unto (Jod." (Willet's Synopsis, p. 4o(i.) 



IDOLATRY OP THE CHURCH OF ROME. 2D 

level with the inspired Scriptures ; and for every event in the 
life of Christ, they have invented an analogous event in the 
life of Mary ; so that she is represented to the people as the 
equal and rival of Jesus Christ. If there be a picture repre- 
senting an angel announcing to Mary the miraculous concep- 
tion of Christ, there is another picture representing an angel 
announcing to Anna the miraculous conception of Mary by 
the power of the Holy Grhost. If there be a picture repre- 
senting the holy family of Mary and Joseph, and the birth 
of Christ, there is also another representing the holy family of 
Joachim and Anna, and the birth of the Virgin Mary. If 
there be a picture representing the circumcision of the child 
Jesus in the Temple, there is another representing the pre- 
sentation of the child Mary in the Temple. If there be a 
painting portraying the agonies of our Lord when nailed to 
the cross, there is another depicting the agonies of Mary with 
seven daggers in her breast. If one depicts our Lord in his 
death, with his disciples weeping around his body, another 
depicts Mary in her death, and her disciples sorrowing around 
her. If one picture represents the resurrection of our Lord 
from the tomb, another is to be seen showing the resurrection 
of Mary. If one describes the ascension of Christ to the 
glory of heaven, another is seen to rival it on the ascension 
of Mary to the same glory ; and if one picture portrays the 
crowning of Jesus as the King of kings, there is another por- 
traying the crowning of Mary as the Queen of heaven. What- 
ever is attributed to one is also attributed to the other. Mary 
is exalted as a rival to Jesus in the prayers, and worship, and 
love, and devotion of the people to such a degree, that some- 
times they are represented as seated, and sceptred, and 
crowned alike as the King and Queen of heaven. So far have 
they gone in the idolatry and blasphemy, that not unfrequently 
they are represented a trinity, three figures on the same throne 
— the Father, the Son, and Mary between them. The Holy 
Ghost is only a little dove fluttering over the head of Mary ! 
These pictures are the real books of the people : the Holy 
Scriptures are utterly unknown and unread, and we need no 
longer wonder that the religion of Kome has become the re- 
ligion of Mary." 

The Church of Rome teaches that divine worship, called 
hitria, is due only to God and Christ. There is a small tract 
7 



26 IDOLATRY OP THE CHURCH OF ROME. 

circulated at Home, entitled "A Prayer to be recited by who- 
ever is desirous to acquire for himself the protection of the 
Most Holy Virgin, to obtain some grace, so that it may be ex- 
pedient for eternal salvation, published in Rome, 1825, with 
the license of superiors." The service consists chiefly of four 
prayers : the first commences, " I adore you, Eternal Father, 
with all the celestial court," etc. ; the second, " I adore you, 
Eternal Son," etc. ; the third, " I adore you, most Holy Spirit, 
paraclete -/' the fourth, " I adore you, Most Holy Virgin, Queen 
of the Heavens, Lady and Mistress of the Universe, as daugh- 
ter of the Eternal Father, mother of his most beloved Son, 
and most gracious spouse of the Holy Spirit," etc. 

Here surely is latria, or supreme worship : the Virgin is not 
merely venerated and invoked, but as to each person of the 
Trinity, so to Mary the suppliant says, "Io vi adoro," I adore 
you. — "Percy's Romanism at Rome, pp. 129, 130." 

What can we say ? Is it uncharitable, or is it according to 
the evidence of facts, when we find these things staring us in 
the face — when we know that the present pope has repeatedly 
invoked the Virgin Mary as the defender of the city of Rome— 
that the late pope, Gregory XVI., directed the people to lift 
up their hands to the Most Holy Virgin, " who alone hath de- 
stroyed all heresies, and is our great confidence, yea, the whole 
cause of our hope"— are we not justified in bringing against 
popes, cardinals, bishops, and people, the awful charge that 
they have "changed the truth of God into a lie, and worshipped 
and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed 

for ever ?"* . 

II. We proceed now to consider the worship addressed by 
Romanists to angels, and to other saints besides the Virgin. 

Roman Catholics are taught that each Christian has a guard- 



* The following is the language of Epiphanius, in the fourth cen- 
tury, in reference to the religious honor which had begun to be paid 
to the Virgin; and which, originating with some Arabian women, was 
called the "heresy of the women." "Who of the prophets ever 
allowed that a man should be worshipped, much less a woman? 
Though the Virgin be a chosen vessel, she is yet but a woman. The 
old error shall not reign among us to leave the living God, and to wor- 
ship things that he has made. For if he will not suffer the angels to 
be adored, how much less the daughter of Joachim and Anna, who was 
born to them as other mortals are born, of a father and mother!" 
(Prptpst. vol. iv. p. 37.) 



IDOLATRY OF THE CHURCH OF ROME. 27 

ian angel especially set over him, and that to him and other 
angels he may address his prayers as mediators with God. 
Arguments to support this opinion are attempted to be drawn 
from the Scripture. We have already refuted these y and we 
have seen that they cannot bear a moment's examination. To 
show that angels are really invoked, let us give one or two sen- 
tences from Dr. Challoner's " Garden of the Soul :" 

" St. Michael, pray for us. St. Gabriel, pray for us. AL 
ye holy orders of blessed spirits, pray for us." Again, " 
enflamed seraphim, burning with love : ennobled cheru 
bim, shining with knowledge : holy archangels, to the de- 
claring things greater : good angels, exercising constant 
care over men, attend to your ministry, directing our thoughts, 
words, and actions into the way of salvation and prosperity. — 
Horce sec. Us. Sar fol. 92. 

Again, the saints are thus addressed : 

" St. John the Baptist, St. James, all ye holy patriarchs 
and prophets, pray for us. St. Peter, St. Paul, and all ye 
holy apostles and evangelists, pray for us. St. Stephen, St. 
Lawrence, pray for us. All ye holy bishops and confessors, 
St. Sylvester, St. Gregory, pray for us," etc. 

Now, all such prayers as these are a direct denial of the 
truth of God, that Christ is the one Mediator. They insult, 
in the most awful manner, the perfection of Christ's office : 
they necessarily represent him as stern and unrelenting until 
the entreaties of angels or saints have melted him into com- 
passion ; and they give a most unscriptural representation of 
that economy of grace, throughout the whole of which God 
is heard to say, " This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well 
pleased." 

As a conclusive proof that the merits of the saints are made 
the ground of appeal, and that every blessing is directly 
sought from them with idolatrous homage, take the following 
facts : 

" The Missal for the Laity" has been published by the 
Catholic Book Society, by Thomas Richardson & Son, Derby ; 
and having prefixed to it the episcopal sanction of two bishops, 
one of them being " Nicholas, Bishop of Melipotamus," (now 
Cardinal Wiseman.) 

One portion of this book is called " The Proper Service of 
Saints," from which we select the following prayers : 



28 IDOLATRY OF THE CHURCH OF ROME 

" God, who by the teaching and miracles of the blessed 
Francis didst bring into thy Church the people of the Indies, 
mercifully grant that we may imitate his virtues, whose glori- 
ous merits we venerate." 

" O God, who wast pleased to send the blessed St. Patrick, 
thy bishop and confessor, to preach thy glory unto the Gen- 
tiles, grant that, through his merits and intercession, we 
may, through thy grace, be enabled to keep thy command- 
ments. " 

In proof of direct invocations addressed to saints, we quote 
from the old service books of the Church of Rome before the 
Reformation, when she swayed an unlimited and uncontrolled 
power over Europe, and claimed to be " the pillar and ground 
of truth." Here is a prayer to St. Claude : can it be addressed 
to any other than God, without idolatry ? 

" Prayer to St. Claude. — thou comforter of the desolate, 
deliverer of the captive, resurrection of the dead, light of the 
blind, hearing of the deaf, speech of the dumb, keeper of the 
shipwrecked, healer of the impotent and languishing, refuge 
of medicine, way of the erring, and the salvation of all who 
trnst in thee!" — Horce sec. Us. Rom. 6 die Junii. Paris, 
1670. 

In a prayer to St. Francis these words occur : " Be thou 
unto us the way of life. Always kind to us, display unto 
Christ thy wounds." 

This St. Francis is also addressed in this book as " having 
the stigmata [marks or wounds] of Jesus Christ imprinted on 
thee;" and (awful to relate !) the stigmata of St. Francis are 
represented as bearing the same relation to mankind as the 
sufferings of our blessed Lord. A plate is given in the Book 
of the Conformities of St. Francis, which represents the cross 
of Christ; but, instead of the two arms of the Son of God, 
one of the arms of St. Francis occupies the place of Christ's 
left arm, as though to instruct us that the salvation of men 
was equally divided between them. The following inscription 
exists on the great gate of the convent of the Franciscans at 
Rheims, (literally translated :) — " To the Man God and St. 
Francis, both the one and the other crucified." A represent- 
ation of one arm of Christ and one of St. Francis nailed to 
the cross, is still published in the Breviaries for the use of the 
Franciscans. Pope Nicholas III. recognized this lying legend 



IDOLATRY OF THE CHURCH OF ROME. 29 

and recommends the poverty and perfection of St. Francis. 
He declared of St. Francis " that he had no bag, and that he 
finds not in him those marks of infirmity that were in Jesus 
Christ. He had a bag and he fled; (when ?) and in these two 
things Francis surmounts Jesus Christ !"* 

III. Lastly, with regard to images and relics : there was a 
time, a blessed time, in the history of the Church of Christ, 
when images were utterly unknown, when only in Pagan tem- 
ples were found representations of deities or gods, when all 
Christians regarded it as a good characteristic of true Christ- 
ianity to " turn from dumb idols to serve the living God." 
But now, alas! how did "the gold become dim," how was 
" the fine gold changed !" Image-worship rose up in the 
•fourth century. In spite of the resistance of faithful wit- 
nesses from age to age, such as the Iconoclasts, or im- 
age-breakers, it came to pass at length that Rome, in her 
full-grown apostasy, made the worship of images universal 
throughout her borders. The creed of Pope Pius IY has 
these words: "I most firmly assert that the images of the 
Mother of God, the Virgin, and of other saints, are to be had 
and retained, and that due honor and veneration are to be 
addressed to them." 

Romish doctors and casuists here resort to argument again. 
In the first place, they tell us that pictures of our Lord and 
of the saints are only used as incentives to devotion. But 
we reply, You have no authentic portrait of the Lord Jesus 
Christ ; and, if you had, you have no authority for making 
a representation of him. Show us a place in the word of 
God where a command is given to make an image of Christ, 
of the apostles, or any of his saints. The true image of 
Christ is to be found in the Bible — this is the mirror. O 
that all would look into it ! — that, "beholding as in a glass 
the glory of the Lord," they might be "changed into the 
same image from glory to glory, as by the Spirit of the Lord." 
They refer us again to Exod. xxv. 18, where a command is 
thus given to Moses : " Thou shalt make two cherubim of 
gold, of beaten work shalt thou make them, in the two ends 
of the mercy-seat. From this they argue that images were 

* See the references and proofs in Tayler's "Popery: its Charac- 
ter and Crimes," pp. 201, 202. 
3* 



30 IDOLATRY OP THE CHURCH OF ROME. 

sanctioned under the law, and that they are therefore lawfu, 
under the gospel. Were these cherubim images to be wor- 
shipped ? No, they were emblems or types under a figur- 
ative economy. They were on the two ends of the mercy- 
seat, looking down upon it. That mercy-seat was the lid of 
the ark of the covenant : it was called the propitiatory : it 
was an emblem of the atonement of Christ. The true com- 
mentary on the spiritual typical meaning of the whole is 
found in the words of the Apostle Peter : " Which things," 
(the mysteries of redeeming love) " the angels desire to look 
into." (1 Pet. i. 12.) The images of Rome are put up on the 
walls of churches — in continental cities they are erected at 
the corners of the streets, and in the highways, and all this 
that the people may see them, and kneel before them. But 
where were these cherubim ? why, in the Holy of Holies, in 
that secret place of the temple into which no one ever entered 
but the high-priest, and he only once a year ! The people 
had never looked upon these cherubim, and therefore "honor 
and veneration" could not be addressed to them, as to images 
now. 

Again, let it be remembered that image-worship is expressly 
forbidden in the word of God. "Take ye therefore good 
heed unto yourselves," says Moses, Deut. iv. 15, 16; "for 
ye saw no manner of similitude on the day that the Lord 
spake unto you in Horeb out of the midst of the fire : lest 
ye corrupt yourselves, and make you a graven image, the 
similitude of any figure, the likeness of male or female." 

There is a Koinish catechism, called "An Abridgment of 
Christian Poetrino, recommended by authority for the use of 
the Faithful in England : published by Burns and Lambert, 
Portman street, Portman square." On the front of it is a 
picture df the A'irginand Child, with an imprimatur by Nich- 
olas, bishop of iMelipotamus, (Cardinal Wiseman,) London, 
Easter, ISoO. The second commandment in the word of 
Cod is as follows: — "Thou shalt not make unto thee any 
irra von imaire, or any likeness of anv thine; that is in heaven 
above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water 
under the earth : thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor 
serve them ; tor 1 the Lord thy Cod am a jealous God, visit- 
ing the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the 
third and fourth generations of them that hate me, and show- 



IDOLATRY OF THE CHURCH OF ROME. 31 

ing mercy unto thousands of them that love me and keep my 
commandments." (Exod. xx. 4, 5, 6.) But instead of this 
commandment, Dr. Wiseman has sanctioned the following in 
the catechism referred to : — 

"What is the second commandment?" 

" Thou shalt not take the name of the Lord thy God in 
vam. 

But this is part of the third commandment : so that they 
have thus actually left the second commandment out of the 
catechism altogether, and, to make up the ten, they have 
divided the tenth into two. Is not this done because Home 
knows that she is guilty of idolatry, and therefore tries to 
strangle the -witness that would bear testimony against her?* 
0, have these men never read that awful text — "If any 
man shall take away from the words of the book of this pro- 
phecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life, 
and out of the holy city, and from the things which are written 
in this book?" (Bev. xxii. 19.) 

The following statements attest the awful prevalence of 
image-worship at Borne at this day : — 

" In the church of the Augustinians, at Borne, there is an 
image of the Virgin Mary. It is one called a miraculous 
image : that is, it works miracles. Our Lord cleansed the 
leper, healed the sick, cured the blind, and raised the dead. 
Lest this should steal away the hearts of the people from 
Mary to Christ, they have got up similar miracles as wrought 
by Mary, and, accordingly, every year this image of Mary 
works miracles of the same kind. It is as large as life, very coarse 
and very ugly. It is dressed in silks and satins — the hands 
are covered with rings, the wrists with bracelets, the arms with 
armlets, the neck with half-a-dozen of necklaces — all being 
topaz, and amethyst, and rubies, and diamonds. Her stom- 
acher is black velvet, loaded with diamonds, and on her head 
is a diadem of diamonds that would grace an empress. All 

* The Rev. Dr. McCaul, in his tract, "Why does the Church of 
Rome hide the Second Commandment from the People ?" has shown 
that of twenty-nine catechisms in use in Italy, France, Belgium, 
Austria, Bavaria, Silesia, Poland, Ireland, England, Spain, and 
Portugal, (all published under lawful authority,) there are twenty- 
seven in which the second commandment is totally omitted, and two 
in which it is mutilated and only a portion expressed. — London, 1850. 



32 IDOLATRY OF THE CHURCH OF ROME. 

these were the offerings of her votaries. I reckoned no l<sa 
than one hundred and sixty-seven rings, over and besides 
those on her fingers, arranged for display on her shrine. I 
have frequently visited this church; and as the high altar, 
where the priest says mass for the worship of Christ, is at 
one end, and as the image of Mary is at the other, so have [ 
witnessed, at the time of mass, the extraordinary scene of hun- 
dreds of persons turning their hacks upon Mary to worship 
Christ in the host, and at the same moment hundreds of oth- 
ers turning their backs upon Christ in the host to worship the 
A'ir<iin in the imaire. I have seen the whole congregation 
divided thus between Christ and Mary at the elevation of the 
host, which is the most solemn moment of all their worship, 
when they suppose that, by the process of transubstantiation, 
the host has become the visible body of Christ among them. 
I have seen them, I say, at that moment turn their backs on 
the host, and prefer bowing to the image of the Virgin." — 
Seymours Lectures, p. 13. 

The same writer, in describing the nature of Romanism at 
Rome, describes the adoration paid to the Bambino, that is, 
" the Child," designed as the image of the child Jesus. " It 
is a little doll, sonic eighteen inches or two feet long. It is 
carried about the streets by the priests in a sort of state-coach, 
and it is taken to visit ladies in the hour of nature s sorrow, 
on the festival called 'Blessing the Bambino/ amidst a band 
of nearly ninety priests and monks, the clash of military 
music, blazing torches, and clouds of incense. When the 
chief priest raised the idol, five thousand souls prostrated 
themselves in worship before it. I had never beheld such an 
awful spectacle; and I feel that never, in the darkest days of 
the idolatry of heathen Borne, was there any thing comparable 
to the grossness of this modern idolatry of Christian Home." 
— Seymour s Lectures, p. 14. 

And now a few words as to relics. The decree of the 
Council of Trent is as follows : — 

" Let them teach also that the lioly bodies of the martyrs 
and others living with Christ, whose bodies were living mem- 
bers of Christ and temples of the Holy Ghost, and will by 
him be raised to eternal life, and glorified, arc to be venerated 
by the faithful, since God bestows by them many benefits 
among men." — Cone. Trid., Sess. £5. 



IDOLATRY OF THE CHURCH OF ROME. 33 

Here, again, we ask for Scripture authority for the worship 
of relics ; and Rome, when driven to argue from Scripture, 
appeals to some passages. We are referred, for instance, to 
2 Kings xxiii. 18, where we find that King Josiah honored 
the bones of a man of God who was buried at Bethel. Jo- 
siah had burned the bones of the irreligious priests upon the 
altar, (which altar, contrary to the Divine command, had been 
set up at Bethel,) and thereby had polluted the altar. But 
when Josiah came to the sepulchre of the holy prophet, did 
he gather up his bones, and carry them, as modern Romanists 
do, to a shrine or sacred place ? Bid he perform an act of 
veneration, and, by his example, teach his people to bow 
down before them ? No ; but, instead of burning them along 
with the bones of the wicked prophets upon the altar, he 
simply said, " Let them alone : let no man move his bones." 

We are referred again to 2 Kings xiii. 21, where the bones 
of the prophet Elisha are said to have raised a dead man to 
life ; but if God, in a single case, in the case of a prophet, 
did cause a dead man to rise because he touched Elisha' s 
bones, how can this prove that dead men's bones now can 
raise a dead man to life ? What has this to do with the 
establishing of the lying miracles ascribed by Romanists to 
relics now ? Produce your case, we say. Take a dead man 
any hour : bring forth the holy bones from under the altars 
in your sacred places ; and when we see that dead man, by a 
touch of those bones, spring up to life, we will then believe in 
your authorities — but not till then. 

We are also referred to Acts xix. 11, 12 : "And God 
wrought special miracles by the hand of Paul, so that from 
his body were brought unto the sick handkerchiefs or aprons, 
and the diseases departed from them, and the evil spirits 
went out of them." We ask, What has this to do with the 
question ? If God was pleased to give miraculous virtue to 
handkerchiefs and aprons brought from Paul while living, 
what has this to do with the relics of saints who, although 
dead and buried, are invested with imaginary virtue to heal 
diseases ? As long as the Church of Rome tells us that she 
has certain dead men's bones, and dead men's coats, and frag- 
ments of the spear, and other relics, which need only to be 
touched to produce the most marvellous effects; but never 
shows that, when touched, they do produce these effects, we 
7* 



34 IDOLATRY OF THE CHURCH OF ROME. 

must look upon the whole thing as just as apocryphal as her 
constant assertion that she has infallibility, while it is a con- 
stant fact that that infallibility has never been discovered or 
brought to any practical issue. 

From Scripture we find that a different treatment was 
given to relics from that which Rome now pleads for. There 
was a relic preserved, namely, the serpent of brass which had 
beeu set up on a pole in the wilderness. In passing, we may 
remark, that the making of this serpent by Moses is employed 
as an argument for images; but let it be remembered, that 
the dying Israelites did not worship the image, but by God's 
command looked at it; and that thus it was a beautiful type 
of the Lord Jesus Christ. "As Moses lifted up the serpent 
in the wilderness, even so must the Son of man be lifted up : 
that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have 
eternal life." (John iii. 15.) This brazen serpent was 
preserved for a time ; but by and by, when the idolatrous ten- 
dencies of the heart of man began to invest it with the ven- 
eration which Rome gives to relics now, what did the zealous 
Hezekiah do ? Why, we read, 2 Kings xviii. 4, that " He 
brake in pieces the brazen serpent that Moses had made ; for 
unto those days the children of Israel did burn incense to it." 
When idolatry spread over the land, one of the idols was this 
brazen serpent ; but now Hezekiah brake it in pieces, " and 
he called it Nehushtan" — that is, a piece of brass. Now 
the Church of Rome pretends that she has among her sacred 
treasures the wood of the true cross ; and it is said there are 
more pieces of the true cross on the continent than would 
load a ship of war. We are told by Thomas Aquinas,* that 
the cross is to be worshipped with latria, with supreme honor : 
the Missal authorized by Popes Clement and Urban orders the 
clergy on bended knee a to worship the cross : the Breviary 
commands that the choir shall sing, u Hail, Cross ! our only 
hope I increase righteousness to the pious : bestow pardon on 
the guilty \" — and surely in all this there is the recognition 
and the practice of the grossest idolatry. Though Rome 
could produce the very cross on which the Saviour died, yet, 
because it had become a stumbling-block and a snare, wo 
would say, "It is a piece of wood — let it be destroyed.'' 

* Bossuet admits that St. Thomas thus teaches. — (Euvres i. 448. 



IDOLATRY OF THE CHURCH OF ROME. 85 

We worship not the cross, but "Jesus Christ and him cruci- 
fied" — " Christ, the power of God, and the wisdom of God." 

At this hour, as we have seen, all the image-worship which 
has been sanctioned by Borne in past days is continued at 
Rome. In like manner relics are still adored. In the church 
of the Lateran you will find "the ark of the Lord which 
Moses made, and the identical table at which our Lord ate 
the last supper with his disciples. Upon the high altar are 
the heads of the apostles Peter and Paul; and though the 
heads be in Bonie, there is a great piece of the skull of St. 
Peter at Bilboa, and that of Paul is in the possession of the 
Franciscans in the same city. Hundreds of relics are found 
among other churches : among which are pretended to be 
shown part of the manna in the wilderness — some of the 
blossoms of Aaron's rod — a finger and arm of St. Anna — a 
piece of the Virgin's veil — the head of St. Denis, which he 
carried two miles under his arm after it was cut ofi" — the rope 
with which Judas hanged himself, etc. etc." — Philosophic 
Library for June, 1818, and Catalogue, 1753. 

The following " relics" are referred to in the Hon. J. W 
Percy's " Romanism as it exists at Rome," published in 
1847. They are noticed by Mr. Percy, with many others, on 
the authority of lists or inscriptions seen in different churches, 
which he mentions : — 

Some of the manna with which God fed the Hebrew peo- 
ple in the desert. 

The stone where the Lord wrote the law given to Moses on 
Mount Sinai. 

Part of the chain of St. John Baptist, forerunner of our 
Lord Jesus Christ. 

A little piece of the stone where Christ was born. 

A little piece of the stone where our Lord Jesus sat when 
he pardoned the sins of the Magdalen. 

The great toe of the foot of St. Mary Magdalen. 

Part of the napkin with which our Lord wiped the feet of 
his disciples. 

One of the pieces of money with which it is believed the 
Jews paid the treachery of Judas. 

One bottle of the most precious blood of our Lord Jesus 
Christ, and another full of the milk of the most blessed 
Virgins 



36 IDOLATRY OF THE CHURCH OF ROME. 

The finger of St. Thomas the apostle, with which he 
touched the most holy side of our Lord Jesus Christ after 
his resurrection. 

Mr. Seymour says — 

" I have handled the rod of Moses : I have looked on 
Aaron's rod that budded : I have seen the brazen serpent that 
Moses made : I have held in my hand the stone that killed 
Stephen : I have seen pieces of the true cross, and the trans- 
verse beam of the cross of the repentant thief. I have seen 
the nails that pierced the hands, and the spear that pierced 
the side of the Redeemer. I have seen and handled some 
thousands of the teeth, and pieces of the bones, and parings 
of nails, and locks of the hair of apostles, martyrs, and saints. 
I have seen the people bow and prostrate themselves before them 
with every outward act of devotion and adoration, though I 
believe in my soul they are the grossest frauds and vilest impos- 
tures that ever disgraced or cursed, the world." — Lecture, 
pp. 15, 16. 

In conclusion, we affectionately address Roman Catholics, 
and ask them, Can that be the infallible Church which sanc- 
tions such idolatrous worship as has now been described? 
1'q persuaded to go at once, without the intervention of either 
saint or angel, to him who alone can save. There is a great 
and only "Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the right- 
eous:" his blood is sufficient to justify you, his Spirit to sanc- 
tify you; his heart is full of tenderness, his bowels melt with 
love. Commit your souls and your cause into his hands: he 
is waiting to plead for you. While you read this he is ready 
to bless you by turning away every one of you from your 
iniquities. Hark to that voice of power, that voice of love, 
within the veil : Christ prays in regard to those who believe 
in him, " Sanctify them through thy truth : thy word is 
truth." And 0! when you come to die, instead of hav- 
ing the words " Jesu" and "Maria" together upon your 
lips, let it be enough for you to say, in the language of David, 
"Into thine hand I commit my spirit: thou hast 

REDEEMED ME, LORD GOD OF TRUTH, Psalm XXxi. 5, 
and with the expiring Stephen to cry, " Lord Jesus, RECEIVE 
my spirit !" (Acts vii. 50.) 

Huahvilte, Tonn. : Published by E. St*T©nson & r. A. Own, tor Uw M. E. Churoh, South. 



No. 30. 



IMMACULATE CONCEPTION OF MARY. 



For several centuries the Church of Rome has celebrated 
what she calls " The Feast of the Conception of the Virgin 
Mary." The eighth day of December is set apart for this 
festival. And on the eighth day of December, 1854, Pope 
Pius IX. formally pronounced the immaculate conception of 
Mary an article of faith, which a man must believe on peril of 
damnation. We do not believe any such unscriptural, foolish, 
idolatrous, and blasphemous dogma ; and we can afford to smile 
at the impotent and impudent imprecations of the pontiff, 
knowing that " the curse causeless will not come." 

The most satisfactory expose of this popish novelty which 
we have seen is from the pen of Prof. H. B. Smith, in the 
Methodist Quarterly Review : we extract the substance of it, 
for the benefit of such as may be interested in the subject. 

During the seventeenth century, but not before, " Our 
Lady of the Immaculate Conception" was one of the favorite 
subjects of Christian art. Gruido depicts the Virgin, crowned 
with twelve stars, standing on a crescent sustained by cherubs, 
wuh seraphim on either hand, floating between heaven and 
earth. Murillo, the greatest of Spanish artists, illustrated the 
devotion of Spain to the homage of Mary, by twenty-five 
pictures; the grandest of which is the "Great Conception of 
Seville," a city which became frantic with joy, when, in 1615- 
17, Paul V sanctioned the office of the Immaculate Con- 
ception, and forbade other teaching. The idea of these pic- 
tures is taken from the woman in the twelfth chapter of the 
Apocalypse, " clothed with the sun, and the moon under her 
feet, and upon her head a crown of twelve stars :" this great 
"wonder in heaven," the symbol of the Church, is made to 



2 IMMACULATE CONCEPTION OE MARY. 

be the mother of our Lord, instead of that " Jerusalem, which 
is the mother of us all." 

In the catacombs, and the mosaics before the sixth century, 
the mother of Christ is always represented as standing in a 
subordinate position, usually veiled. In the course of the 
seventh century, higher honors cluster around her radiant 
form : she is imaged forth as the bride of the Bridegroom, 
the type of the Church ; as queen of heaven, of the angels, 
and of virgins. Even in the west, before 600, she is depicted 
as sitting on a throne, the queen of heaven. In mediaoval 
times, her coronation by Christ becomes predominant : her 
sceptre is a sceptre of mercy, while our Saviour is seen in 
contrast, under the likeness of a stern judge : the mother is 
full of all compassion, the Redeemer becomes lenient for her 
sake. She is also the mother of sorrows, the " mater dolo- 
rosa," bearing the sword in her bosom, and as such she ap- 
peals to the tenderest and deepest sympathies of our nature, 
and feels all the woes of those who flee to her for succor. As 
the mother of the Redeemer, she exercises over him the rights 
of her divine maternity : through her intercession the grace 
of the Lord distils as dew upon the faithful. 

All the acts of her life have been the themes for the painter, 
the sculptor, and the poet. Apocryphal Gospels, none of 
which are older than the fourth century, supplying by inven- 
tions the silence of the New Testament, make Joachim and 
Anna to be her father and mother — tell us that our Saviour 
was born in her fifteenth year, and that she lived eleven years 
at Ephesus with John, dying at the age of fifty-nine. Another 
tradition relates that her tomb was opened three days after 
her burial, and that her body could not be found, but only a 
fragrant odor — that she was translated directly to heaven; and 
the festival of the assumption honors this miraculous and un- 
witnessed event. Though her death is assigned to A. D. 63, 
yet in no subsequent canonical work are these marvels re- 
corded. But these fictitious biographies narrate all the details 
of her nativity, her presentation in the temple, and the scenes 
of her marriage, as well as the scriptural facts of the annun- 
ciation, of the nativity of our Lord, of her purification and 
the flight into Egypt : legend and fable carry her through the 
final scenes of earth, to her triumphal coronation in heaven. 
There is a perhaps unconscious, yet manifest attempt to make 



IMMACULATE CONCEPTION OE MARY. 3 

out a complete parallel between the successive events in the 
history of the mother and the stadia in the life of our Lord : 
she is as a woman, what Christ was as a man. And all of 
these wonderful legends are received as genuine by the Ro- 
man Catholic Church : it vouches for their verity, and cele- 
brates festivals as a perpetual memorial. 

In the Papal Church the veneration of the Virgin is the 
central point of the whole system of creature-worship, with 
which that Church itself, as now constituted, stands or falls. 
The working of the " mystery of iniquity" in that corrupt 
communion is nowhere more apparent, and in no point more 
capable of historical elucidation. Its paganizing tendencies 
are here open to the day : its invocations to Mary are more 
bold, more rapturous, more tender, and more universal than 
to any other of the saints ; and these religious observances 
have grown with each century of its history. Rome has here 
been consistent ; and she has just placed the crown upon the 
completed system of idolatry by the dogmatic declaration, that 
the " blessed Virgin Mary was conceived without the infection 
of original sin," exempting her from the common heritage 
of the human race ; thus, in yet another point, making her 
to be like our Lord, breaking down the last barrier to her full 
worship. 

The first trace of the worship of the Virgin, which history 
records, is the enumeration by Epiphanius, among his eighty 
heresies, of the festive rites of the Colly riddance, a company 
of women in Arabia, in the last part of the fourth century, 
who paid divine honors to Mary, partaking around a table, 
adorned with myrtle, of small cakes, (collyris,) in the same 
manner as Cybele, the magna mater deiim, had been wor- 
shipped in these regions and in Phrygia. The discussion of 
the heresy of Nestorius in the first half of the fifth century, 
condemned by the third general council at Ephesus, in 431, 
turned upon attributing to the Virgin the title of SeoroKog, 
Deipara, afterward changed into the phrase, " Mater Dei," 
the " mother of God." It was not in honor of Mary, but to 
maintain the reality of the Incarnation, that this term was 
first used ; but it gave a great impulse to her veneration. 
Effigies of the mother and Son become frequent, as sacred 
symbols, and supplant the cross. Christ begins to recede, 
and his mother to come into the front rank of popular veno 



4 IMMACULATE CONCEPTION OF MARY. 

ration : to Cyril of Alexandria, the chief opponent of Nesto- 
rius, is ascribed the introduction of the prayer, " Holy Mother 
of God, pray for us, poor sinners, now and in the hour of 
death/' The angelic salutation, "Ave Maria," becomes a 
popular greeting. Her perpetual virginity and divine mater- 
nity are tests of orthodoxy. The first traces of festivals in 
her honor soon follow : the Festival of the Annunciation 
(March 25, the season of the opening spring) cannot be 
traced beyond the last part of the fourth or the beginning of 
the fifth century : her Purification (Feb. 2) follows in the 
sixth, favored by the Emperor Justinian, and Gelasius, Bishop 
of Home : the Festival of the Assumption, on the 15th of 
August, already foreshadowed in the fable, follows in the 

course of the eighth and ninth centuries, though it has not 

.... 
been pronounced a dogma. It is a singular coincidence, that 

at this time of the year, Astraea, goddess of justice, and 
Ceres, mother of fruits, and the Egyptian Isis, had been 
worshipped with special rites by the heathen of old, and 
sometimes depicted as rising from the earth to the sky. 
At the end of the seventh century, in the east, Mary's na- 
tivity had already been generally celebrated on the 8th of 
September : it follows somewhat later in the west : the tes- 
timonies for an earlier observance are insecure. John of 
Damascus, in the eighth century, says, that " the centuries 
contended for the honor of her birth." These festivals, to 
which others of less importance were afterwards added, gave 
such splendor to her cultus, that Pope Sergius (c. 700) could 
boast of the superiority of the worship of the " bride of 
God" to that of Proserpine, "the bride of the god of the in- 
fernal regions ;" and the Koran calls Jehovah, Christ, and 
Mary, " the three gods of the Christians." The first vestiges 
of "offices" for the public cultus are found among the Bene- 
dictines — from the eighth to the eleventh century, these 
are fully developed — the Cistercian order observed them daily, 
in seven canonical hours.* The Festival of the Visitation 
(July 2, PiSl,j completes the sacred seven. The golden 
period of her worship is identical with the height of the 

* See Frantz, s. C3. In some cloisters, five psalms were repeated 
every clay, whose first letters formed the name Maria ; viz. : " Magni- 
ficavit," Psa. exxv. 3; "Ad Dom.," Psa. cxix. 1; "Retribue," Psa. 
cxviii. 17 ; "In," Psa. exxv. 1 ; "Ad te," Psa. exxii. 1. 



IMMACULATE CONCEPTION OF MART. 5 

Papal power in the middle ages, from the eleventh to the thir- 
teenth centuries : the rosary of Mary was introduced in the 
eleventh century : the chivalry of the crusaders was inflamed 
with ardor by the belief in her presence ; orders of knights 
vowed to defend her immaculateness with the sword :* poets 
sang her glories in the most exalted strains : art gave visible 
embodiment to all the legends of the past : the psalter itself 
was rewritten, so that all of its one hundred and fifty psalms 
should celebrate only the praises of " Mary, mother of God," 
" Queen of Heaven," source of mercy, prevalent in interces- 
sion, the joy, the hope, the confidence of the faithful. j* To 
crown the whole, the very hut in which she lived was trans- 
ported by angels from Galilee to Loretto.| 

Into this period, which marks the acme of her cultus, falls 
the beginning of the controversy as to Mary's immaculate 
conception, which has been continued for seven hundred 
years, and is now declared to be dogmatically decided by the 
Roman pontiff. That decision is no accident, no arbitrary 
matter : it was necessary to the completeness of the Papal 
system of saint-worship; and it shows most clearly what that 



* The Spanish order of St. Iago took the oath : "We swear to be- 
lieve and defend, in public and private, that the Virgin Mary, our 
lady, was conceived without the stain of original sin." The Spanish 
order of Calatrava took a similar vow, with yet greater theological 
precision. 

f This Psalter has been ascribed to Bonaventure, and is published 
in his works ; but it is probably from another source, though nearly 
contemporary, in the thirteenth century. Its praise of Mary is idol- 
atrous, and its parodies of the Psalms are most irreverent: "The 
heavens declare thy glory, Mary ;" " Hear us, lady, in the day 
of trouble;" " Offer unto our lady, ye sons of God, offer unto our 
lady praise and reverence." 

X The holy house of Loretto, the "casa santa," the cottage in which 
Mary is said to have lived, was borne by angels in 1290, after the 
Crusaders had lost their last possessions in the Holy Land, at first to 
Dalmatia, then to Recanati in Italy, and the next year to Loretto. By 
order of Sixtus V., it was enclosed in a grand cathedral, built by the 
architect Bramante. It is thirty-two feet long, thirteen high, and 
nineteen wide : it contains the very window through which Mary re- 
ceived the angelic visitation. The angels must have had grievous 
labo** in carrying it through the air ; but nothing is impossible to faith, 
as Archbishop Keurick, of St. Louis, has shown in his work on the 
" Holy House," which is said to be too little known. 



6 IMMACULATE CONCEPTION OF MARY. 

system really is and demands. Contrary as is the new decree 
to Scripture, to tradition, and to reason, involving as it does 
the claim to an infallibility which must be omniscient, it 
is still a decree demanded by the very necessities of the 
Papal system, exposing its true character, and prophesying 
its fate. If Mary be not free from all taint of original sin, 
she cannot be the object of such worship as the Papal 
Church sanctions and enjoins ; and in the dogmatic declara- 
tion that she is thus exempt, Scripture, tradition, and reason 
are superseded by Papal infallibility. 

Before proceeding to examine the decree itself, and the 
arguments in its favor, we will present a cursory history of 
this celebrated controversy. The festival of the " immacu- 
late" conception was not observed until more than a thousand 
or eleven hundred years after the birth of Christ. Perrone 
thinks it may have come from the East, but adduces no evi- 
dence. In the controversy between Ratramn and Radbert, in 
the ninth century, upon the Lord's Supper, the question 
raised was as to the natural or supernatural birth of our Lord, 
but did not reach to the specific point of Mary's immaculate 
conception.* The first introduction of the festival is usually 
assigned by Roman Catholic writers to England, and to the 
influence of Anselm, Archbishop of Canterbury, about the 
year 1070; but this is wanting in historic certainty of evidence. 
The true point of time for the festival and subsequent con- 
troversy is the attempt of certain canons of Lyons, in France, 
to introduce a " Feast of the Immaculate Conception" in the 
year 1140. Bernard, Abbot of Clairvaux, the saint of the 
century, the opponent of Abelard, the great orthodox name 
of the times, resists this festival as a " novelty/' with the 
pertinent inquiry, " How have you come to make the discovery 
that Mary was conceived without sin V He was enthusiastic 
in his reverence for the Virgin, yet declares that " reason does 

* Radbert is claimed on the side of the immaculate conception, by 
Perrone, p. 83, sq. But his chief controversy is upon the mutter of 
Christ's birth, -whether Mary at that time was free from sin. In his 
"work on the "Birth and Perpetual Virginity of Mary," he says 
that " Mary was free from all original sin;" but when was she thus 
free? In her conception ? That he does not assert. She was free 
when Christ was begotten. He says that "she was sanctified and 
purified by the Spirit." 



IMMACULATE CONCEPTION OE MARY. 7 

not approve, nor ancient tradition commend/' this novel rite 
and doctrine. He grants that she was "sanctified in the 
womb/' as were Jeremiah, and John the Baptist, while as- 
serting that " Christ alone was conceived without sin."* No 
distinguished theologian of the twelfth or thirteenth century- 
defended the dogma. The festival of the " conception " was in- 
creasingly observed in England and in France, but it was not 
termed the "immaculate" conception. That the "sanctifi- 
cation," and not the "conception" of Mary was the original 
object of the festival of the 8th of December, is the probable 
opinion, supported by the authority of Aquinas and Bellar- 
mine, and by the contemporary acts and statutes,"}* from the 
twelfth and thirteenth centuries. Thomas Aquinas, Peter 
Lombard, Durandus, Bonaventure, all the great names of these 
times, opposed the new and extreme opinion, as we shall 
hereafter see ; but it was in the necessities of the system that 
it should prevail : it gained in popular applause what it lacked 
in theological authority. Duns Scotus, "the subtle doctor," 
was the first of the scholastics who defended the opinion ; but 
even he expresses himself with great reserve : he also admits, 
that if the Virgin Mary had not had original sin, she would 
not have needed the grace of Christ. Duns Scotus, it is also 
reported, defended the dogma before the University of Paris, 
against two hundred Dominicans, and brought the University 
to the decree, that " none should be admitted to the scholastic 
degrees," who did not maintain this "pious opinion;" but 
Scotus died in 1308, and the first report of this disputation 
is from Franciscan authorities, nearly two centuries afterward, J 

* Bernard! Epistola 174 ad Canonicos Lugdunenses: "Our Lord 
Jesus Christ alone was conceived of the Holy Ghost." Bulaeus, in 
his "History of the University of Paris," says that the canons of 
Lyons affirmed that they had a document from heaven, prescribing 
the observance. Bernard tells them that Rome has not sanctioned the 
observance. 

-j- Cf. Gieseler, 2, 2, s. 475, note 16, containing extracts from the 
Council of Oxford, as late as 1222, and from French statutes of the 
thirteenth century. 

J Th& Franciscan, Bernardinus de Bustis, about 1480, and Pelbar- 
tus Tenrestarius, about 1500. See Gieseler, u. s. " The later Fran- 
ciscans," says Gieseler, "are surprised that the 'subtle doctor' says 
so little of the matter, but console themselves with the belief that hia 
chief works on the subject have been lost." 



8 IMMACULATE CONCEPTION OF MARY. 

and in the acts of the University there is no account of the 
matter. As late as 1380, the University speaks only of the 
" Festival of the Conception/' and in 1387 it declares the 
immaculate conception to be " a probable opinion/' in opposi- 
tion to the views advocated by the Dominican, John De Mon- 
tesonus, who maintained that belief in the immaculate con- 
ception was a sin against the faith. The above decree as to 
the " decrees" was not made until 1407 

From the time of Duns Scotus, the controversy assumed a 
more definite form, and it is made more spicy and inveterate 
by the hostilities of the rival orders of the Dominicans and 
Franciscans, the former supporting the opinion of Aquinas, 
the "angelic doctor/' and the latter of Scotus, the "subtle 
doctor." New miracles, revelations, and proofs, as well as 
popular fanaticism, urge on to a further decision. The anti- 
Pope Clement VIL, in the exile at Avignon, in 1389, follows 
the lead of the University of Paris, and expresses an opinion 
favorable to the doctrine, by condemning the views of the 
Dominican Moutesonus. St. Bridget has revelations for the 
Dominicans, and St. Catharine of Sienna has different ones 
for the Franciscans. The Council of Basle, in 1439, con- 
trolled by French influence, declared that Mary " was never 
actually subject to original sin," but did not affirm it to be an 
article of positive faith. This decree was passed while the 
council was in conflict with the pope ; consequently, it is not 
recognized as having authority* 

A new stage in the history of the dogma is marked by the 
so-called " Constitutions" of Sixtus IV., himself a Franciscan. 
In the year 1477 he issued a bull, recommending the celebra- 
tion of the "conception of the immaculate Virgin," not of 
the "immaculate conception" of the Virgin; and in 1483, 
in another bull, he condemns those who assert that the de- 
fenders of the immaculate conception are heretical, and also 
those who maintain that the advocates of the opposite opinion 
are guilty of the crime of heresy, or of mortal sin. Such is 
the substance of these famous " Constitutions," after which 
the Sorboune becomes still more zealous against the Domini- 
cans : in 1509, four of that order* were burned at Bern, 

* The Dominicans at Bern set up an image of the " mother of God," 
Which wept bloody tears: they received letters directly from heaven, 
and practiced abominable impositions, in advocacy of their views. 



IMMACULATE CONCEPTION OF MARY. 9 

giving new confirmation to the "privilege of Mary." The 
Council of Trent did not venture upon a final decision, though 
urged to do so, but merely confirmed these Constitutions, de- 
claring that " in its decree concerning original sin, it did not 
intend to include the blessed and immaculate Virgin Mary, 
mother of God." This left the whole question still open. 

Pius V., in 1570, confirmed the Constitutions of Sixtus by 
condemning certain propositions of Bains, in his bull, " jSujicr 
Speculum :" he says expressly, that the Council of Trent 
" gave each party permission to hold either side of the ques- 
tion," and forbids all popular controversy: he also first in- 
serted into the Roman breviary and reformed missal an office 
for the " conception of the Virgin Mary," to be read on the 
8th of December, changing the word "nativity" into "con- 
ception :" so late was this change made even in Rome itself. 
Pope Paul V., in 1616, and Gregory XV., in 1622, left the 
matter undecided and forbade dissension, though urged to a 
decision. Bellarmine, the greatest of the Papal controver- 
sialists, is of the same mind. Pope Alexander VII., in 1661, 
in the bull, " Sollicitudo omnium," again forbids dispute : he 
also commends the piety of those who defend the privilege of 
Mary, and speaks of the " immaculate conception of the Vir- 
gin/' in distinction from the " conception of the immaculate 
Virgin."* Clement XL, in 1708, reestablished the festival, but 
he calls it the " conception of the immaculate Virgin." The 
"Christian Remembrancer" contends that this bull decided 
the controversy, and made the present action of the pope 
needless; but this bull relates to the festival, and terms the 
Virgin, and not her conception, "immaculate." Gregory XVI., 
in 1834, at the appeal of French bishops, in consequence of 
a movement begun by a remarkable coincidence again at 
Lyons, where the controversy in 1140 had its origin, ordered 
that the designation "immaculate" should be inserted in the 
preface to the mass of the conception ; and in 1844, that Mary 
should be invoked in other litanies as " queen conceived with- 
out original sin." 

Such has been the development of this dogma to the time 
of the present pontiff. For the last century and a half it had 

* The " Letters Apostolic " of Pius IX. say that Alexander's words 
are " evidently decretive :" they certainly are almost identical with 
the form enforced by Pius IX. 



10 IMMACULATE CONCEPTION OF MARY. 

excited comparatively little discussion. The Roman Catholics 
seemed content to leave it as an undecided point, a matter of in- 
difference. The French clergy showed little zeal, and many 
of her theologians were opposed to it : even the ardor of Spain 
was relaxed. But the revival of the Papal claims in new 
vigor, the pressure of the ultramontane influence, superseding 
even in France the traditional Gallican liberties, the necessary 
and consequent excitement of popular superstition, have 
pressed the matter to what is esteemed an authoritative and 
final decision. The apparition of the Virgin to the herdsmen 
of La Salette, even now vehemently contested in France it- 
self ; the " miraculous medals" distributed by millions through- 
out Europe; the revived zeal of the "Sodalities" for the 
worship of the Virgin — have all, within the last twenty-five 
years, inflamed the popular ardor, and served to bring out 
most clearly the inherent and necessary tendencies of the Pa- 
pal system. The Jesuits have lent their ubiquitous aid to this 
work, and it falls in with all the plans and aspirations of the 
ultramontane party, who seek for power through superstition, 
and gladly welcome a decree which fosters superstition and exalts 
the prerogative of infallibility in the mouth of the pope alone. 
Pope Pius IX., during his whole pontificate, has shown 
himself the most devoted of the worshippers of Mary. In 
1847, he confirmed the decree of Gregory XVI., in respect 
to the introduction of the term "immaculate" in the liturgy, 
especially in the preface of the mass for the " Conception," 
with additional privileges to the order of Preachers for their 
zeal. In his exile at Gaeta, in 1849, he addressed his famous 
11 Encyclical, on the Mystery of the Immaculate Conception," 
of the date of February 2, to the patriarchs, primates, arch- 
bishops, and bishops of the whole Catholic Church, affirming 
the existence of " an ardent desire throughout the Catholic 
world that the Apostolic See should at length, by some solemn 
judgment, define that the most holy Mother of God, the most 
loving mother of us all, the Immaculate Virgin Mary, had 
been conceived without original sin." "These desires," he 
adds, " have been most acceptable and delightful to us, who, 
from our earliest years, have had nothing dearer, nothing more 
at heart, than to revere the most blessed Virgin Mary with 
an especial piety and homage, and the most intimate affections 
of our heart, and to do every thing which might seem likely 



IMMACULATE CONCEPTION OF MARY. 11 

to procure her greater glory and praise, and to amplify her 
worship." From such a declaration he anticipates signal 
blessings to the Church, tossed to and fro, and fallen upon 
evil times. He says he has committed the investigation of 
the whole matter to a special congregation of cardinals and 
selected ecclesiastics, illustrious for piety and wisdom, and 
versed in divine things ; and he invokes the prayers and coun- 
sel of all the bishops to whom the Encyclical is addressed. 
"You know full well, venerable brethren, that the whole 
ground of our confidence is placed in the most holy Virgin," 
since "God has vested the plenitude of all good in Mary, so 
that henceforth if there be in us any hope, if there be any 
grace, we know that it is from her that it redounds; 
for such hath been the will of Him who would have us pos- 
sess all through Mary."* A commission was appointed for 
the examination of the question, under the presidency of 
Cardinal Fornarini : Cardinal Lambruschini produced his 
Tract, and Perrone De Immaculate B. V- Marioz conceptu : 
Passaglia has also written a large essay ; and the results of 
these renewed investigations are issued by the Propaganda 
press, in two large quarto volumes. The special commission 
reported, in a full conclave of the Sacred College, 27th May, 
1854. Answers had come from six hundred and two bishops, 
all of them favorable to the dogma, though fifty-two doubted 
the opportuneness, and four the possibility of a decision. f 
The "special congregation" demanded the definition with 
alacrity and zeal. A Consistory of consultation was proclaimed 
and held at Rome, November 4, 1854 : it was not a general 
council, nor was any authority attributed to it. Fifty-four 
cardinals, forty-six archbishops, and about four hundred bish- 
ops, are reported to have been present at these deliberations : 
five hundred and seventy-six votes are said to have been cast 
for the dogma, and only four against it : among the latter 
were the Archbishop de Sibour, of Paris, on the ground that 
the pope had no power to decide such a question ; and also 
the Bishop Olivier of Evreux, lately deceased, who sent in 
his vote by proxy. On the 8th of December, in St. Peter's, 
in the midst of the celebration of the " Conception," in the 

* Cited from Gregory, de Expos, in libros Regum. 
_ f These letters, with others from sovereigns, orders, and associa- 
tions, are printed in nine volumes. 



12 IMMACULATE CONCEPTION OP MARY. 

presence of more than two hundred ecclesiastical dignitaries, 
and in answer to a petition presented by the dean of the 
Sacred College of the Cardinals, the supreme pontiff, with a 
"tremulous" voice, read in Latin the following decree : " AVe 
declare, pronounce, and define, that the doctrine which holds 
that the blessed Virgin Mary, at the first instant of her con- 
ception, by a singular privilege and grace of the omnipotent 
God, in virtue of the merits of Jesus Christ, the Saviour 
of mankind, was preserved immaculate from all stain of ori- 
ginal sin, has been revealed hy God, and therefore should 
firmly and constantly be believed by the faithful."* 

The cannon of the castle of St. Angelo, the joyful chime 
of all the bells of Rome, the enthusiastic plaudits of the as- 
sembled thousands, the magnificent illumination of St. Peter's 
church, and the splendor of the most gorgeous festive rites, 
gave response to the infallible decree. It was a grand pa- 
geant, befitting an idolatrous enthusiasm. The pope himself, 
with "trembling joy," crowned the image of the Virgin: 
medals of Australian gold were struck, and distributed in her 
honor. " Rome," say the beholders, " was intoxicated with 
joy." An infallible voice had spoken : a new article of faith 
was announced by " divine" authority : the people rejoice in 
hope that Mary will be yet more "propitious," that her "pre- 
valent intercession will give peace and plenty, will stay the 
power of infidelity, put an end to insurrection, and crown 
Rome with higher honor and success." The controversy of 
seven hundred years is brought to a final decision : Rome is 
committed irrevocably to the worship of the " Virgiu mother 
of God, conceived without original sin." "Roma locuta est," 
and doubt is now heresy. The work begun b} 7 the third 
general council at J<]phesus, in 431, proclaiming Mary " the 

* Sec the " New York Freeman's Journal and Catholic Ke^istcv," 
February 17, ]H~>~), which contains in full the "Letters Apostolic. 
Immediately following the above definition are the words of "infal- 
lible" warning: "Wherefore, if any shall dare — which God avert! 
— to think otherwise than as it has been defined by Us, they should 
know and understand that they are condemned by their own judgment, 
that they have suffered shipwreck of the faith, and have revolted from 
the unity of the Church; and besides, by their own act they subject 
themselves to the penalties justly established, if what they think tiny 
should dare to xiynify by tvord, wrlliny, or any other outward means. 
The el.iim of Papal infallibility has here reached its acme. 



IMMACULATE CONCEPTION OF MART. 13 

mother of God," is declared to be consummated by the pa. 
pal decree of December 8, 1854, asserting the privilege of 
her immaculate conception, on the authority of Peter' s_ chair. 

What, now, are the grounds, what is the proof of this dog- 
ma of the immaculate conception, to which, as we have seen, 
the whole history and the very necessities of the Roman Ca- 
tholic system have forced that corrupt communion to gravi- 
tate ? Can it be proved by Scripture ? Is it consonant even 
with tradition? Can theological or rational arguments of 
sufficient cogency be alleged in its favor ? Or, is it merely 
the full development of an evil inherent in the whole system 
of that apostate Church, and supported as a dogma in the last 
analysis, only by the bare and irrational claim of papal infal- 
libility ? 

The work of Cardinal Perrone is one of the most authori- 
tative and complete exhibitions of the papal view, and is ac- 
companied with the papal sanction. The author is now 
" general rector of the Roman College/' and is styled " the 
prince of contemporary theologians." He was born in 1794, 
at Chieri, a village near Turin : at twenty-one years of age he 
joined the company of the Jesuits : he succeeded to the chair 
of Bellarmine, Suarez, and Vasquez, in the Roman College in 
1823, where he has ever since taught, with the exception of 
a few years of absence. To great learning he adds no mean 
dialectical skill. He is honored as are few of the Italian 
theologians : he is a member of the Congregation charged with 
the examination of the provincial councils, and the revision of 
the books of the Oriental Churches : he is also an official " con- 
suitor" of the Congregations of the Propaganda, of Rites, 
and of Extraordinary Ecclesiastical Affairs; and he was a 
member of the special commission appointed to examine the 
dogma of the conception. His " Praelectiones Theologicse," 
nine vols., Rome, 1835 sq., have been through twenty-five 
editions : portions of this work have been separately published : 
an abridgment of it, in four volumes, has had some twenty 
editions. Perrone is also the author of a "Synopsis of the 
History of Theology compared with Philosophy," Rome, 
1845, and of a work on " Protestantism and the Rule of 
Faith " published in three vols., in 1853 — a complete store- 
house of all the arguments and all the calumnies against the 
Protestants. The "Two Praescriptions " of the Jansenist, 
8 



IMMACULATE CONCEPTION OF MART. 

worwT 7 ' T tained in the first volume of Ms collected 
works, were written to expose the groundlessness of the argu- 

TeahlT trad ^° n ? rg6d in favor of the d °S ma ' They 
b eathe the spirit and exhibit the learning of the old Galil- 
ean Church Perrone honors them with especial polemics, 
lhey present an array, by one of the ablest and most learned 
ot the French Church, of those authorities which the new 
decree tramples under foot. The summary of Launoy's argu- 
ment is, that before 1800 the Church knew no other doctrine 
than that Mary was conceived in original sin: that Scotus's 
reasonings are futile : that the early Franciscans themselves 
rejected the dogma: that the same was the case with Loyola 
and the first Jesuits, and that seven popes have declared 
against the dogma. The remainder of the « Prescriptions " 
so called m imitation of Tertullian's work, is devoted to an 
examination of the attitude of the University of Paris in re- 
spect to the doctrine. 

Perrone states carefully the point and aim of his whole 
argument in the question, which makes the title of his work, 
" Can the Immaculate Conception of the blessed Virgin be 
denned by a dogmatic decree V That is, Is there sufficient 
ground or basis in Scripture, in tradition, and in theology, for 
declaring it to he an article of faith ? Or, in yet other words, 
Has the doctrine of the Immaculate Conception always been 
of the faith of the Church ? 

He is also correct, and gives an accurate statement of the 
real question, in asserting that it is a question of fact — not 
of theory, not of possibility, not of necessity, but simply of 
fact. Has it been divinely revealed, as a fact, that Mary was 
exempt from all taint of original sin ? The question is not at 
all of a probable opinion, nor of a speculative possibility, but 
about a fact, which only Omniscience could know, which only 
God could reveal. 

What is now this alleged fact ; or, in other words, What is 

the dogma of the Immaculate Conception ? Before proof can 

be brought, or testimony weighed, the doctrine itself must be 

clearly stated. And upon this point there is no uncertainty. 

The decree of Pius IX., already recited, states the point with 

sufficient clearness. Were it not for some misapprehension, 

it would not be necessary to say that it has nothing to do with 

the conception of our Lord, whether he was himself without 



IMMACULATE CONCEPTION OF MARY. 15 

sin, or Mary without sin when he was conceived in her womb. 
Nor is it, among the Romanists, a question as to whether 
Mary was actually sinless in all her life; for, whether with or 
without proof, this point is conceded by all Roman Catholic 
divines: it was as earnestly maintained by Bernard as by 
Scotus, by the Dominicans as by the Franciscans, as was also 
her perpetual virginity. Nor is it a question as to whether 
Mary was "sanctified" in the womb, for the disputants agree, 
whether with or without evidence, that she was thus sanctified, 
and in the womb of her mother : Catherine of Sienna, who 
prophesied for the Dominicans, says that this occurred " three 
hours after her conception." But if she was sanctified, then 
she needed to be sanctified; that is, she was in a sinful state, 
under the dominion of original sin, for a time, longer or 
shorter, as it is said were also Jeremiah and John the Baptist. 
The question is not whether she was " sanctificata," but 
whether she was " sancta" — not whether she was an immacu- 
late virgin, but whether she was immaculate in her conception 
— whether her conception was immaculate. The question is, 
Was Mary ever in the least degree, or for even a passing mo- 
ment, under the taint of original sin, or wholly and ever ex- 
empt, from the first instant of her conception, through a sin- 
gular privilege ? The dogma asserts that she was exempt, and 
asserts it as a fact. This is her " prerogative :" this is the 
" pia sentential ' 

The question which Perrone and the other advocates of the 
"pious sentiment" undertake to answer in the affirmative, is 
just this : Is there adequate evidence to establish the fact, as 
divinely revealed, that Mary, in the above sense, was conceived 
immaculate ? 

The three chief sources of argument to establish this al- 
leged fact are Scripture, tradition, and the theological proofs, 
including the argument of congruity or fitness. 

The Scriptural argument for the dogma is exceedingly 
slight, and is virtually abandoned by Perrone himself. He 
rejects as insufficient the mystical application of the personi- 
fied Wisdom, and the types and figures which many of the 
fathers so freely apply to the Virgin. Even the angelic salu- 
tation, (Luke i. 28, sq.,) he concedes, derives all its weight 
not from itself, but from the interpretation of the fathers : " in 
itself considered, it gives only a conjecture." But why evea 



16 IMMACULATE CONCEPTION OP MARY. 

a conjecture ? The greeting runs, Xaipe, nexapiTG)ii£vr} : it 
implies grace : it says and implies nothing about her original 
state. But the passage claimed as having argumentative force, 
" the only one/' says Perrone, is Genesis iii. 15 : "And I 
will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between 
thy seed and her seed : it [she] shall bruise thy head, and 
thou shalt bruise his heel." The argumentation here is curi- 
ous. The received Vulgate reading, not found, however, in 
all the copies, is " ipsa," she ; while the Hebrew reads jon, 
he, or it: Jerome, too, reads "ipse:" Sixtus V edition of 
the Septuagint reads avrbg. And then Perrone contends, 
that it is indifferent which reading is adopted, because, at any 
rate, Mary could not have had the power to conquer the ser- 
pent excepting through Christ. But how does this prove the 
Immaculate Conception — give to the dogma " a firm founda- 
tion ?" Simply for the reason, that in these words a " special 
privilege is conferred upon Mary," and that special privilege 
could " only have been the immunity from original sin." But 
the privilege conferred is solely, even on the author's own 
ground, that she should be in some way a means of subduing 
Satan, and she was this as the mother of our Lord. And to 
assert, that in order to be the mother of Christ, she must be 
free from original sin, is purely to beg the whole question. 
The " Letters Apostolic" of Pius IX. upon the dogma, sanc- 
tion infallibly the application of the clause " bruise thy head" 
to Mary, who, the pope says, "has crushed the serpent's head 
with her immaculate foot." 

The Biblical argument against the immaculate conception 
is simple and cogent. Mary is nowhere made an exception to 
the common heritage of the race. The whole human family, 
Christ alone excepted, is declared to be involved in original 
sin, through the fall of Adam ; and also, without exception, 
the whole race is declared to be in need of redemption through 
the meritsof Christ. Since the Scriptures do not make an 
exception in the case of Mar#, neither can we : to make such 
an exception, we need unequivocal inspired authority. And 
if we make it in the case of Mary, why not, as Bernard him- 
self argued, by the same reason and necessity make it in re- 
spect to Mary's parents, grand-parents, and so on, up to Adam 
himself? If it is in any way necessary or needful, from the 
law <>f descent, or for the completeness of the Incarnation, 



IMMACULATE CONCEPTION OF MARY. 17 

that our Saviour should be born of a mother free from the 
hereditary fault of the race, the same necessity, under the 
same law, must carry us as far back as the law itself reaches. 

How does the cardinal meet the difficulty raised by these 
two doctrines ? He does this in respect to the universal need 
of redemption, by asserting that there is a twofold mode of 
redemption, through the blood and merits of Christ : he con- 
cedes that Mary had need of the redemption ; that, " con- 
sidered in and by herself, she was subject to original sin/ 7 and 
that it was on the ground of Christ's merits that she was ex- 
empted ; but he says that she was redeemed before original 
sin touched her at all, as when a debt is paid before a man is 
put into prison : all the rest of mankind have their debts paid 
only after actually being in bondage to sin. Whether this 
position does not really annul the dogma — and it is also the 
position of the infallible decree of Pius IX. — we shall examine 
by and by. But, in addition to this, Perrone also urges, in 
reply to the Scriptural argument, that " papal decrees, and 
the decision of Trent in the case, have annulled the application 
of the Scriptural passages to the matter in question/' so that 
they can no longer be adduced. Popes, he says, have repeat- 
edly called the dogma a "pious" opinion, and declared it to 
be not contrary to the faith ; and the Council of Trent ex- 
pressly declared, that " in the doctrine of original sin Mary 
was not excluded." This is certainly sufficiently audacious, 
and shows how infallibility deals with Scripture. If the pope 
should declare himself to be sinless, the argument would 
hold just as well ; for it amounts to this, that papal infalli- 
bility may annul the application of a scriptural truth to cases 
which are embraced in that application. But other popes — 
seven, Launoy says and proves — have given a counter declar- 
ation : between two contrary infallibilities, who shall decide ? 
And yet again, Perrone asserts, that these Scriptural declar- 
ations about original sin and the need of redemption do apply 
in some sense even to Mary ; and he also asserts, that papal 
infallibility has decided that they are not to be thus applied. 
And who shall decide between these two positions ; and who 
can hold them both ? 

For all who receive the Scriptures as the word of God, 
having ultimate authority, the evidence against the dogma is 
decisive. And the only conclusion to be drawn on this ground 



18 IMMACULATE CONCEPTION OF MARY. 

of argument is, that in the decree of the Immaculate Concep- 
tion we have that asserted as a fact which is plainly contrary 
to Scripture. An infallible pope here decides not with, nor 
yet without, but against Scripture teaching. For all, too, 
who admit the equal authority of Scripture and tradition, it 
would seem to be a plain inference, that the equality is de- 
stroyed so soon as a doctrine is declared to be of the faith, 
which is not only found in tradition alone, but also in a tra- 
dition which contradicts the Scriptures. Granting that the 
whole of tradition is for the dogma, by a unanimous consent, 
if it be admitted contrary to the Scriptures, the two author- 
ities are no longer equal : the tradition is made superior. But, 
in fine, conceding even this, namely, that a unanimous tra- 
dition can supersede the Scriptures themselves, can the dcgma 
of the Immaculate Conception be proved to be a part of the 
general tradition of the Roman Catholic Church ? Doe=; tra- 
dition, the second source of argument in its favor, support, 
substantiate, authorize this new decree ? 

Supposing tradition to be unanimous and complete in the 
matter, we do not see how it can prove the point which Per- 
rone declares is to be proved ; that is, the fact of the Imma- 
culate Conception. Only Omniscience could be cognizant of 
such a recondite fact — only a special revelation could commu- 
nicate that knowledge to others. N«w, none of the fathers, 
and none of the schoolmen, and none of the popes, profess to 
have had a specific revelation upon the point of fact, that is, 
a revelation assuring them, on direct divine authority, that the 
Virgin Mary, at the instant of the union of the soul with the 
seed, was by grace kept free from all touch of original sin. 
Yet that is the fact which is to be proved, and proved on 
divine authority, on the authority of a specific revelation about 
this specific fact. 

But, waiving this point, we come to the tradition itself. Is 
the dogma a part of the tradition of the Church, so that, if 
tradition be recognized as an ultimate source of appeal, we 
should be warranted in saying that the position is established ? 
What is tradition, on the ground of the Koman Catholics 
themselves ? Their standards declare it to be " equally with 
Scripture the word of Grod ;" and, in distinction from Scrip- 
ture, to contain those truths, " quae ab ipsius Christi ore ab 
apostolis accepts, aut ab ipsis apostolis Spiritu Sancto dictante, 



IMMACULATE CONCEPTION OF MARY. 19 

quasi per manus traditse ad nos usque pervenerunt ;" and they 
further speak of such truths as " tanquam vel ore tenus a 
Christo vel a Spiritu Sancto dictatse et continua successione in 
Ecclesia Catholica conservatse." These are the formal state- 
ments in the decrees of the Council of Trent, sess. iv., decree 
1. The "Professio Fidei Tridentinge" of Pius IV., made 
binding upon the whole " representative Church/' by papal 
bulls, enforces the declaration, "Nee earn (Sacram Scriptu- 
ram) umquam, nisi juxta unanimum consensum Patrum, ac- 
cipiam et interpretabor." This is also in accordance with the 
decree on the "use of the Scriptures," adopted in the fourth 
session of the Council of Trent : " Ut nemo — contra unani- 
mum consensum Patrum Scripturam Sacram interpretari au- 
deat." In sess. xiii., c. 2, tradition is designated as the 
" universus ecclesiae sensus." If any thing can be inferred 
from their authentic statements* it is, that that only is to be 
received as a true tradition, or can be solidly proved by tra- 
dition, which can be traced to Christ, or to the apostles, in a 
continual succession, and which has for it the " unanimous 
consent" of the fathers and teachers of the Church. 

In applying this authentic interpretation of the idea of tra- 
dition to the dogma of the Immaculate Conception, it will be 
found to hold true that the weight of tradition is adverse to 
it, that the oldest and best tradition is against it, that the 
greatest doctors of the middle ages are also opposed, and that 
the authorities since the Reformation are hopelessly at vari- 
ance. 

Before the breaking out of the controversy between the 
canons of Lyons and Bernard in 1140, all the great teachers 
are silent or adverse. The question does not exist for them : 
they know nothing of this specific doctrine : they speak in 
respect to original sin and the need of redemption in such a 
way as to prove that the Immaculate Conception of Mary could 
not have been any part of their creed. Their praises of the 
Virgin are often immoderate : they defend her perpetual vir- 
ginity : many of them believe that she was " sanctified " in 
the womb : most of them declare that she never was guilty of 



* See Bulls of Pius IV., viz. : " Injunctum nobis," and " In sacro- 
sanctu." 1564. Also Concil. Trid., sess. xxiii., cap. iii., on the 
"unanimous consent of the Fathers." 



20 IMMACULATE CONCEPTION OF MARY. 

actual sin ; but they do not know any thing about her exemp- 
tion from all infection of original sin. 

Augustin defends her only against the charge of actual 
sin :* " Excepta sancta Virgine Maria, de qua propter hono- 
rem Domini nullam prorsus, cum de 2>c<:cati$ ayitur, haberi 
volo quoestionem." This passage is quoted in favor of the 
dogma, but it plainly refers only to actual transgression, and 
it is contained in a reply to the position of Pelagius, that there 
were saints who had not sinned. In his treatise on the Re- 
mission of Sins,"}" this greatest of the Latin fathers says ex- 
plicitly that Christ alone was without sin: " Solus ergo ille 
etiam, homo factus, manens Deus, peccatum nullum habuit 
unquain :" nor does he intimate any exception. In his work 
De Genesi, ad. lit. c. 18, n. 32, he speaks of " the body of 
Christ as taken from the flesh of a woman, who was conceived 
of a mother with sinful flesh ;" and he indicates a clear dis- 
tinction between Mary's nature and Christ's nature in this re- 
spect. Augustin' s followers make similar statements. Euse- 
bius Emissenus, (supposed by some to be Hilary,) on the 
" Nativity" says^, "From the bond of the old sin is not even 
the mother of the Redeemer free." Fulgentius writes, "The 
flesh of Mary, which was conceived in unrighteousness in a 
human way, was truly sinful flesh;" and he adds, " that this 
flesh is in itself truly sinful," referring to Paul's use of the 
term "flesh," to designate our common hereditary sinfulness. 
Others of the fathers make use of similar statements, irrecon- 
cilable with a belief in the Immaculate Conception. J 

It is, indeed, true, that the fathers do not often speak di- 
rectly upon the point in question ; but this is for the simple 
reason, conclusive against the claim of universality, that they 
did not know any thing about it. The doctrine is declared, 
A. D. 1140, by Bernard, to be a " novelty ;" and he says that 
the festival is "the mother of presumption, the sister of su- 
perstition, and the daughter of levity." Others of the earlier 
fathers speak of Mary in such a way as is absolutely irrecou- 



* De Natura et (Init.ia, c. 30. f Pook ii. c. 24, g 38. 

% See Perrone, pp. 40, sq. The Dominican Batuh'llus, in'his " De 
Singulari Puritato el Prcerogativa Conception!:.; Christi," 1470. has 
collected .some four hundred testimonies against the dogma from the 
fathers: so the Cardinal Turrecamata, De Veritate Conceptiouis 
1550. 



IMMACULATE CONCEPTION OP MARY. 21 

cilable with the idea that they believed in her immaculate 
conception. Hilary declares that she is exposed to the fire 
of judgment : " If that virgin which could compass God is to 
come into the severity of the judgment, who will dare desire 
to be judged of God V Irenasus, Tertullian, Origen, Basil 
the Great, and Chrysostom, do not hesitate to speak of faults 
of Mary, of her being rebuked by Christ. " If Mary/' says 
Origen, " did not feel offence at our Lord's sufferings, Jesus 
did not die for her sins :" Chrysostom ascribes to her " exces- 
sive ambition at the marriage festival at Cana :" Basil thinks 
that she, too, " wavered at the time of the crucifixion :" all 
of which statements are utterly inconsistent, not only with 
the dogma of the Immaculate Conception, but also with a be- 
lief in her perfect innocency. 

Tertullian, de Came Christi, § xvi., declares that u Christ, 
by putting on the flesh, made it his, and made it sinless :" 
Irenasus, " that Christ made human nature pure hy taking it :" 
Athanasius, on the " Incarnation/' teaches the same doctrine, 
that " Christ sanctified his own body," and that " he hath 
purified the body, which was in itself corruptible." Of course, 
the body he assumed was not in and of itself sinless. Gre- 
gory of Nazianzum, and John of Damascus, (730,) teach ex- 
pressly that the Virgin was sanctified by the Holy Ghost. If 
Christ, by assuming human nature in Mary, " made it sinless," 
it was not so before his incarnation. 

The innumerable passages from the fathers, in which they 
declare the universality of sin, and the universal need of re- 
demption through Christ, without making any exception in 
favor of the Virgin, we need not cite, because their existence 
is unquestioned. They have full force in the argument, how- 
ever, because there are no counter testimonies to be adduced. 

The citations from the fathers, which Perrone brings in 
favor of his dogma, are all fairly interpreted on the supposi- 
tion that they believed Mary to have been sanctified in the 
womb, or pure as a virgin, or not subject to actual sin. For 
example, when Ambrose says " that Mary is an incorrupt vir- 
gin, a virgin freed by grace from all stain of sin/' when Au- 
gustin speaks of her as a without sins ;" and when Ephraem 
declares her to be " an immaculate and spotless virgin, incor- 
rupt, and a virgin from all stain of sin most foreign '" and 
when Mary is compared with Eve, on which Perrone lays 
8* 



22 IMMACULATE CONCEPTION OF MARY. 

much stress, as being the source of salvation as Eve was of 
death, all of these and similar statements are to be interpreted 
in some one of the above senses, and only confirm the position 
that the specific doctrine was not in the mind or thoughts of 
the early Church, and fail to render any proof, especially when 
taken in connection with the counter testimony.* 

The early liturgies and offices of the Church are an addi- 
tional source of evidence. They exalt Mary and her concep- 
tion; but they do never call it an " immaculate " conception. 
It is only in the latest years that the term " immaculate " has 
been introduced into the western offices of the highest author- 
ity. The offices themselves, in honor of the Virgin, did not 
become current in the west till the eleventh century. In the 
office for her birth, in the ancient churches, it is read that 
" she was sanctified from the stain of sin" — in one of the 
German liturgies, " that she was born with a propensity to 
sin" — in the Roman Church itself, the office spoke of the 
" sand fjicat ion of the Virgin." This silence, and the late 
alteration of these offices, are conclusive as to the non-exist- 
ence of the dogma. 

In the year 791 (al. 79G) a council was held at Friuli, 
(Concilium Forojuliense,) called by Paulinus, (Paulus,) pa- 
triarch of Aquileia, during the pontificate of Adrian L, to 
consider the Trinity and the Incarnation, in respect to the 
procession of the Holy Spirit, and "Adoptionisni," that is, 
the opinion maintained by Archbishop Elipandus of Toledo, 
and others, that Christ in his human nature was the Son of 
God only by u adoption." A long and explicit Confession 
of Faith was published by this council, in the course of which 
it is said : " Solus cnim sine, percato natns est homo, quoniani 
solus est incarnatus de Spiritu Sancto et immaculata Virgine 

* As further specimens of Perrone's citations in evidence, lie quotes 
from a work on the " Sufferings of St. Andrew," of unknown author- 
ship, the expression that "the perfect man was born of a stainless 
virgin;" from Dionysius of Alexandria, that Mary "is the sole 
daughter of life," "the house of God;" from Hippolytus, that Christ 
sprung " from incorruptible wood;" from Origen, " the worthy, im- 
maculate virgin," who "did not bring forth fruit in lust:" from Eph- 
ra^m, "immaculate, unperverted, and most chaste of all;" and the 
like. These, with the above, are his strongest passages, and they 
show the hopelessness of the attempt to find the doctrine in the 
Christian fathers. 



IMMACULATE CONCEPTION OF MARY. 23 

novus homo. Consubstantialis Deo Patri in sua, id est, di- 
vina; consubstantialis etiam matri, sine sorde peccati, in nos- 
tra, id est, humana natura."* If the belief in the immaculate 
conception of the virgin had been any part of the orthodoxy 
of the times, it would have been impossible for a council to 
have spoken in this way of Christ, as " alone horn without 
sin ;" and the " immaculateness " ascribed to the Virgin can- 
not possibly, in the connection, be interpreted of her concep- 
tion, or even of her birth ; for, if it could, then Christ could 
not be said to be the " only" one of men horn without sin. 

The testimony of the early bishops of Rome we omit for 
the present. The only conclusion to be derived from the ar- 
gument of tradition, so far as the first eight or nine centuries 
of Christian history arc concerned, is that the dogma is un- 
known. And on the ground of tradition this silence is con- 
clusive. For tradition demands " universality" of belief: it 
demands that the doctrine be traced, "in continual succes- 
sion," to Christ and the apostles. Its formula is, " Quod 
semper, quod ubique, quod ab omnibus creditum est." And 
on this ground, silence for eight hundred years is condemna- 
tion, f 

How does the case, now, stand in the mediaeval Church? 
The amount of the argument and the result of the testimony 
here are, that the doctrine was first invented in the twelfth 
century, that it was opposed by the greatest and best of the 
scholastics, and that it made its way, in spite of this opposi- 
tion, through the force of popular superstition, and from the 

* See Harduin, Acta Conciliorum, 1714, torn, iv., p. 856, C. 

f Launoy's Second Prescription declares, (p. 11 :) "If the Church 
should wish to explain and solve the matter of the conception of the 
Virgin in the way just mentioned, (that is, in accordance with the 
rules of Vincens of Lirens;) and to put the end of the discussion 
A.D. 1300, it would, without doubt, decree that the blessed Virgin, like 
the rest of mankind, was conceived in original sin." Melchior Canus, 
one of the most illustrious Roman Catholic divines of the eighteenth 
century, one of the most eminent members of the Council of Trent, 
sent by the University of Salamanca, of whom the Roman Catholic 
Church historian, Dr. Ritter, of Breslau, in his Church History, 4th 
edition, 1851, vol. ii. p. 276, says, that "of all the writers of his 
time he obtained the greatest renown," in his "Loci Theologici," 
published 1563 and often afterward, declares : " That all the holy 
fathers who have spoken of the point, have asserted with one voic6 
that the blessed Virgin was conceived in original sin." 



24 IMMACULATE CONCEPTION OF MARY. 

necessary working out of the inherent tendencies of a system 
of creature-worship. Some of the inediasval testimony we 
have already adduced : we add only the most important cita- 
tions. 

Anselm, (1070,) though cited for the Immaculate Concep- 
tion, teaches in his " Cur Deus Homo/' (ii. 16,) that Mary 
was conceived in sin ) a Virgo tamen ipsa, unde assumptus 
est, est in iniquitatibus concepta, et in peccatis concepit cam 
mater ejus, et cum originali peccato nata est, quoniam et ipsa 
in Adam peccavit, in quo omnes peccaverunt." See also the 
close of this chapter, and the next (17).* 

Bernard, in the very beginning of the controversy, (1140,) 
in the Epistle to the Canons of I/yons, says, in addition to 
what we have already cited : " If, then, she could neither be 
sanctified before her conception, since she did not then exist, 
nor in it, on account of the sin which was inherent in the act, 
it remains that she must have received sanctification while yet 
existing in her mother's womb, which, excluding sin, made 
her nativity holy, but not her conception also." 

The " Four Books of Sentences" of Peter Lombard, "mas- 
ter of sentences," bishop of Paris, 1159 to 1164, were the 
theological text-book of the middle ages, upon which all the 
great scholastics made their comments and built their systems. 
He says of the flesh of Mary, which our Lord assumed, that 
it was " previously obnoxious to sin, like the other flesh of 
the Virgin, but by the operation of the Holy Spirit it was 
cleansed." u The Holy Spirit, coming into Mary, purified her 
from sin, and from all desire of sin.""}" 



* Also, " she was sanctified by the Holy Ghost," (De Conceptu 
Virginis, c. xviii. :) his words cited by Duns Scotus, that "nempe de- 
cens est, ut ea puritate, qua major sub Deo ncquit intelligi, virgn ilia 
niteret," refer in the connection only to liev sanctification hel'ore tho 
conception of Christ. See Kollner, Svmbolik, 2, s. mOI. 

This passage is also adduced by Pcrrone : it is taken from the 18th 
chapter of Anselm's work on the "Conception." Perrone argues, 
that this must refer to her purity of conception; but this is simply 
an addition to the text, and contrary to the above citation. Anselm 
further, in his "Book on the Excellence of the Virgin," says: "We 
certainly hold that her heart had been so cleansed from all hereditary 
or actual sin, which, perhaps, was still present in her, that the Holy 
Spirit, in all his fullness, rested in her." 

f Liber Sent., bk. iii., dist. iii 



IMMACULATE CONCEPTION OP MART. 25 

Alexander of Hales, the irrefragable doctor, also a Fran- 
ciscan, taught in England and Paris, 1230-1245 : his testi- 
mony is explicit : " It was necessary that the blessed Virgin 
in her generation should contract sin from her parents :" 
" she was sanctified in the womb."* 

Bonaventure, the seraphic doctor, the glory of the Francis- 
cans, who died in 1274, and was canonized in 1482, is ex- 
haustless in the praise of Mary in his "Speculum" and 
"Corona." To him is attributed the "Psalter" of Mary, to 
which we have already referred, though probably without 
sufficient ground. He sanctions her veneration in the most 
rapturous terms. Yet on this question he is also decided, 
explicitly declaring " that the sanctification of the Virgin was 
after she had contracted original sin :" she was " sanctified in 
the womb." (Lib. iii., dist. iii. p. 1, qu. 2, 3.) Albertus 
Magnus, who taught in Cologne 1260 to 1280, made the same 
avowals. 

Bonaventure was the pupil of Alexander of Hales, Albertus 
Magnus of Bonaventure, and next succeeds the greatest of all 
the scholastic theologians, Thomas Aquinas, " the angelic doc- 
tor," who died in 1274, was canonized in 1323, and in 1567 
was declared by Pius V to be " teacher of the Church." In 
his " Summa Theologiae, p. iii., qu. 27, art. 1, it stands, "Mary 
■was sanctified in the womb." Art. 2. " Not before the infu- 
sion of the soul ; for if she had been, she would not have in- 
curred the stain of original sin, and would not have needed 
the redemption of Christ." Art. 3. The complete deliverance 
from original sin was only given her when she conceived 
Christ : " ex prole redundaverit in matreni, totaliter fomite 
subtracto." About the festival of the Conception he says, 
" that the Roman Church does not observe it herself, yet it 
tolerates the custom of other churches." 

Such is the testimony of the most eminent mediaeval di- 
vines, to which we need not add names of less weight. Perrone 
feels the difficulty arising from this source so " anxiously," 
that he devotes a whole chapter to its elucidation. What he 
advances amoants to the following positions : that if these 
scholastic divines had reasoned correctly from what they con- 
ceded about the birth of the Virgin, they would have made 

* Summa Theol., p. iii, qu. 10, memb. 2, art. 1, 4, cf. Gieseler. 
3 



26 IMMACULATE CONCEPTION OF MARY. 

her conception immaculate : also, that what they teach can all 
toe- ^«6t explained in harmony with the doctrine ; or, if not so, 
-•hat they taught what they did as "private teachers:" as 
lso, that they were ignorant of antiquity; and again, that 
'heir views on original sin were such as allowed them to speak 
is they did : in fine, that they did not have any guidance Iron: 
in infallible decision in what they uttered; and that while 
shey were wrangling in the schools, the dogma was making its 
way among the people. All of which goes to show, that the 
mediaeval testimony is against it : that, as far as the middle 
ages are concerned, only isolated opinions are for the doctrine, 
and the weight of authority is against it. And yet, in tra- 
dition, the decision can only be by authority. 

The only distinct argumentative attempt which Perrone 
makes to parry the force of their authority and arguments, is 
the assertion that these doctors of the schools, when they 
speak of the conception of Mary, have reference to what he 
calls the first, or active conception, and not to the passive, or 
the infusion of the soul into the body. But this explanation 
is irrelevant, for two reasons : one is, that many of these doc- 
tors do not make this distinction, and, of course, they include 
both parts of the conception in their statement. They make 
the distinction between " conception" and " sanctification," 
and say that all that precedes sanctification belongs to the 
" conception/' and is infected with original sin : this, of 
course, includes the "passive" conception. Another reason 
that invalidates this mode of explanation is, that some of these 
doctors do make the very distinction in question, and yet 
maintain that the whole conception, both active and passive, 
was in original sin. Thus, Alexander of Hales says, that 
" the^ Virgin after her nativity, and after the infusion of the 
soul into the body, was sanctified :" Bonaventure asserts, that 
" the infusion of grace may have been soon after the infusion 
of the- soul;" and Aquinas declares expressly, "that the 
cleansing can only be from original sin, that the fault of origi- 
nal sin can only be in a rational creature, and, therefore, that 
before the infm'em of the rational soul, the Virgin was not 
sanctified." In fact, this mode of meeting the difl&culty can 
only be carried through by supposing that the mediaeval di- 
vines believed that original sin could exist in the mere fleshly 



IMMACULATE CONCEPTION Of MARY. 27 

material derived from parents, an opinion widely abhorrent to 
their well-known views. 

The argument from tradition in favor of the new dogma, 
we think, then, may be classed with the argument from Scrip- 
ture, so far as conclusiveness goes. It will not bear a single 
test necessary to a real tradition, even on Roman Catholic 
grounds : antiquity is silent : in the middle ages the great 
authorities are divided; and in modern times, as our historical 
sketch has shown, there have been perpetual contests and 
divisions. Twenty years ago hardly a single name of emi- 
nence among the Roman Catholics of Germany could be found 
in its favor. Spain, indeed, continued her devotions, but 
France was indifferent, until the Ultramontane party began to 
gain power, and to look about for the means of arousing 
popular feeling in behalf of the Papacy.* 

The third source of proof and argument in respect to the 
dogma is the theological. This is considered by Perrone in 
three chapters, in different portions of his work. Against the 
doctrine four arguments are adduced : Original sin ; Mary's 
liability to suffering and punishment, which implies sin ; the 
universal need of redemption ; and the mode of Mary's con- 
ception, namely, that she was born of sinful parents, in concu- 
piscence : Christ alone, according to the unanimous opinion of 
the fathers, being conceived without lust. Perrone meets 
these arguments by saying, as to the first, that Mary would 
have had part in original sin, by descent, if God had not pre- 
vented this by the grace with which he endued her soul at the 
moment of its creation, when it was infused into the body ; 
and, as this was Mary's " privilege," he claims that the argu- 
ment does not lead to the conclusion that her parents must 
also have been sinless. Suffering, sorrow, and death, he 

* In the light of this historical argument, what shall be said of 
such assertions as the following, contained in the "Letters Apostolic" 
of Pius IX., concerning the dogma? that "this doctrine of the Im- 
maculate Conception . always existed in the Church as 
received by our ancestors, and is stamped with the character of a 
divine revelation. For the Church of Christ, careful guardian and 
defender of the dogmas deposited with her, changes nothing in them, 
diminishes nothing, adds nothing," but only so treats them that they 
"may increase only in their own kind — that is, in the same dogma, the 
same sense, and the same belief." The force of "dogmatic" assertion 
can surely no farther go. 



28 IMMACULATE CONCEPTION OF MARY. 

replies, to the second, do not necessarily imply sin ; and, be- 
sides, the Roman popes have already decided this point against 
Bains. In what concerns Mary's need of redemption, he 
grants that she was in a sense redeemed through Christ's 
merits, but before she actually came under the infection of 
sin: by her descent she was under the " obligation " to be 
sinful, and would have had a part in the common malady, had 
not, by divine prescience and purpose, her soul been purified 
through Christ's merits before hereditary sin could actually 
touch her soul : that is, Mary, in herself considered as one 
of the race, was liable to original sin, but was kept from it 
through a peculiar and special application of Christ's merits. 
This dual sort of original sin and of redemption we shall re- 
cur to again. In like way he meets the fourth objection to 
the dogma, by the position that she was indeed born of sinful 
flesh and needed redemption, unlike Christ, and had a part in 
such redemption in the peculiar manner aforesaid. 

The theological proofs in favor of the dogma are given by 
Perrone in the fourteenth chapter of the first part of his 
work. They all rest on the idea of congruity, or fitness — 
u that God will choose the better way in all his acts." One 
of these arguments is from the dignity and office of the divine 
mother. God had from eternity predestined Iier to be the 
mother of our Lord, and must,, of course, determine to endow 
her with all needed grace and graces, since she was to be his 
OAvn habitation : he would not, then, have allowed her to be 
defiled, even for an instant, with original sin : this, and this 
alone, is fitting, congruous. Mary's respective relations to 
the Three Persons of the Trinity demand the same, from the 
congruity of the case : of one who was to be the first and 
most beloved of all created beings, the bride of the Spirit, the 
mother of God, to be united to the Son, to be the " mother 
of all living," we cannot conceive it to be possible that she 
would have been allowed to be infected by sin and guilt. 
These arguments, Perrone thinks, come near to being " a 
strict proof;" and he urges them with great plausibility against 
those who maintain, on the same ground of fitness alone, and 
without Scripture, that Mary was sanctified in the womb, is 
the queen of heaven, the mother of all that live, and who pay 
her devout worship. And it docs lie in the very necessity of 
the case, that all such must logically go on to the dogma of 



IMMACULATE CONCEPTION OP MARY. 29 

the Immaculate Conception. Mary cannot, in consistency, be 
worshipped and lauded as she is by all Papists, unless she be 
free from the defilement of our common nature. The worship 
of the Virgin leads to this result. In leading thereto, it 
tramples under foot all tradition, is hostile to Scripture, is 
irrational; but still it leads to this result. On Protestant 
grounds we say that this is the only consistent position for 
the worshipper of the Virgin. May it yet be the means of 
leading many to see the delusion and falsity of the whole 
system ! 

On Protestant grounds, on grounds of Scripture and rea- 
son, too, we add, that this argument from u congruity" is 
absolutely worthless. The point to be proved by any argu- 
ment in the case is the fact that the Virgin Mary was con- 
ceived without sin : the argument from congruity cannot reach 
the fact; it can, at the utmost, prove the possibility. The 
fact is one which only Omniscience could know, which Grod 
alone can reveal; and to propound it as " a doctrine of faith" 
on any such ground of possible fitness, is an insult to the word 
of God. It exalts the unscriptural dogma of the Immaculate 
Conception at the expense of the Scriptural truths of original 
sin, and of the universal need of Christ's merits. It is just 
as easy to prove a good deal more by this " fitness/' namely, 
that Mary could not have fitly been a member of a lost race, 
that she could not be fitly introduced into a sinful world in 
the way of natural descent, and the like. 

There is one other position into which the new dogma forces 
the Roman pontiff, which puts the matter of Papal infalli- 
bility in a disagreeable dilemma and dualism. The decree of 
Pius IX. is in opposition to the express declarations of pre- 
ceding pontiffs : pope is arrayed against pope : infallibility is 
discordant with infallibility. Not only has " a probable opi- 
nion become improbable," but Peter's chair is divided against 
itself; and how, then, can that kingdom stand ? The Jan- 
senist Launoy, in his Prasscriptions, has collected the opinions 
adverse to or irreconcilable with the dogma, of seven of the 
successors of St. Peter, who never change. From Pope Leo. 
the greatest and most learned of the early bishops of Rome, 
he cites four passages in which Leo declares that Christ alone 
" was innocent in his birth," alone was " free from original 
sin/' and that Christ received from his mother " her nature, 
3* 



W IMMACULATE CONCEPTION OE MARY. 

but not her fault;" and he asserts that Mary obtained "her 
own purification through her conception of Christ." This is 
wholly adverse to the dogma. Innocent III., who called 
the Lateran Council in 1213, in a sermon on the "Assump- 
tion of Christ," comparing Eve and Mary, writes : " Ilia 
fuit sine culpa producta, sed in culpa produxit : haec autem 
fuit in culpa producta, sed sine culpa produxit." Gregory 
says, (590-604,) " John the BaptisT was conceived in sin : 
Christ alone was conceived without sin." Innocent V., (1276,) 
in his "Commentary on the Master of Sentences:" " Xon 
convenit tantse Virgini ut diu morata sit in peccato;" and 
he adds "that she was sanctified quickly after the animation, 
(that is, of the body by the soul,) although not in the very 
moment." This is directly against the dogma. John XXII. 
or Benedict XII., (c. 1340,) says that Mary " passed at first 
from a state of original sin to a state of grace." Clement 
VI., (1342-1352,) "I suppose, according to the cornmoa 
opinion as yet, that the blessed Virgin was in original sin ' ' 
modica morula, " because, according to all, she was sanctified 
as soon as she could be sanctified." 

Thus the papacy, in committing itself to this new and idol- 
atrous dogma, is in hostility to Scripture, to universal consent, 
and also to itself. 

It explains the sense of Scripture by tradition ; and it ex- 
plains the sense of tradition by an infallible expositor; and 
that infallible expositor contradicts itself. 

The new dogma makes the whole of the early Church to 
have been ignorant of a truth which is now declared to be 
necessary to the faith : it makes Leo, Innocent III., Innocent 
V., and Clement V., to have taught heresy : it puts the 
greatest scholastic divines under the ban ; and, while doing 
this, it declares that what is now decreed has always been 
of the faith of the Church, and that it is a part of the reve- 
lation of God, given through Christ and the apostles, and 
handed down by constant succession and general consent. 

The "Letters Apostolic," sent forth by Pius IX. to define 
the faith in this matter, are composed in a style which, to a 
correct taste, must appear turgid and overwrought. Repeti- 
tions abound : the vocabulary of epithets and symbols is profuse- 
ly spent in exalting the praise of the Virgin. There is none of 
the simplicity of faith, nothing of such a mode of teaching 



IMMACULATE CONCEPTION OP MARY. 81 

as would alone befit an authentic oracle. It is adulation, 
panegyric, in parts almost rhapsody. It adopts and rehearses 
the most exalted strains and ejaculations of ecstatic mystics. 
It is not argument, but encomium and assertion. It repeats 
most fully and confirms the Constitutions of Alexander VII., 
in his " Solicitudo Omnium Ecclesiarum," 3 Dec, 1661. 
Into the evidence from early tradition it enters only in the 
way of allusion and assumption. Upon some of its wonderful 
assertions we might comment, did our space permit ; but we 
need only quote them to make manifest how utterly devoid of 
evidence they are. The ineffable God " followed her [Mary] 
with so great love before all creatures, that in her alone he 
pleased himself with a most benign complacency." "Which 
original innocence of the august Virgin/ 7 "comprehended 
in the deposit of divine revelation/' the Catholic Church " has 
never ceased to lay down, to cherish, and to illustrate." Fol- 
lowing the most unnatural allegories of the fathers, this decree 
makes the "ark of Noah/' the "ladder of Jacob/' the 
" burning bush/' the " fenced garden/' the " city of God," 
and the "temple of God," to be types, " preannunciations " 
of the dignity and spotless innocence of Mary. It says that 
she is " the spotless dove," " the holy Jerusalem," " the ex- 
alted throne of God," " the queen who came forth entirely 
perfect from the mouth of the Most Sigh," " the crown of all 
miracles." In yet loftier strains she is described as " the re- 
paratrix of her parents, the vivifier of posterity," " always 
conversant with God, and united with him in an eternal cove- 
nant :" she is "more beautiful than beauty, more gracious 
than grace, more holy than holiness, and alone holy :" " God 
alone excepted, she is superior to all, and by nature fairer, 
more beautiful and more holy than the cherubim and sera- 
phim ; she whom all the tongues of heaven and earth do not 
suffice to extol." She is the " most faithful helper of all who 
are in danger, and the most powerful mediatrix and concilia- 
trix with the only-begotten Son of the whole world," " the 
most illustrious glory and guardian of the holy Church/' has 
"destroyed all heresies," "snatched from the greatest cala- 
mities of all kinds the faithful people and nations ;" and it is 
she also who is to " effect by her most powerful patronage" 
the triumphs and dominion of the Church. "Standing at 
the right hand of the only-begotten Son, she intercedes most 



32 IMMACULATE CONCEPTION OF MART. 

powerfully and obtains what she asks, and cannot be frus- 
trated." Are these the words of truth and soberness ? la 
this the gospel for this nineteenth century of strife and infi- 
delity ? Has Rome changed ? Is superstition extinct ? Is 
the Roman Church the Church of Christ, or of Mary ? 

While these and similar statements are abhorrent to Scrip- 
ture, destitute of proper evidence, and indicative of the idol- 
atrous veneration of a creature, yet it is the new dogma itself, 
in its proper dogmatic contents, which is worthy of the most 
especial consideration. Destitute of sufficient evidence, with- 
out basis in Scripture, and opposed to tradition, it also contains 
in itself contradictory and unreconciled elements, which evince 
its falsity and unreasonableness. It is thus not only opposed 
to the past, but self-destroyed. 

And, in the first place, it contains contradictory elements in 
what it asserts about Mary's exemption from original sin, since 
it declares that this exemption was " in virtue of the merits 
of Jesus Christ, the Saviour of mankind." According to 
Scripture, Christ died for the human race, lost and subject to 
sin through the transgression of Adam. His merits as Re- 
deemer cannot be applied, nor be supposed to be applied, to 
any who have not a part in the " vitium originis" of the 
human family. He died for sin, and for that alone : his re- 
demption is from sin, and from that alone. If Mary was 
preserved through his merits, it must have been that she 
had in some way a part in the sin of the race. 

In reply to this, it is said, and Perrone argues, that she 
was indeed redeemed through the blood of Christ, but in a 
peculiar way, in a "higher method," (p. 114, s<j.) "A man 
may be liberated, either by the payment of the debt after he 
is imprisoned, or before :" in the latter case he is not actu- 
ally put into prison : so was Mary redeemed through 
Christ. Such is the mode of explanation common to the 
defenders of the dogma, to avoid this fatal difficulty ; but it 
rests on a mere metaphor, and does not reach the heart of the 
objection. In the case supposed, the man is really and per- 
sonally under the debt, the obligation to pay, though he has 
not yet suffered the consequences of non-payment, that is 
the imprisonment. If he were not personally under this ob- 
ligation, there would be no sense in saying that the debt 
could be paid for him. Just so must it be, by parity of rea- 



IMMACULATE CONCEPTION OF MARY. 83 

soning, in the case of Mary. There is no propriety in assert- 
ing that she was personally delivered through Christ's merits 
from original sin, unless she be considered as personally 
under its power and obligation ; and if she be so, then she 
has a part in the fault of the race. Nor is the difficulty 
avoided if they say, as Perrone sometimes does, that she was 
" exempted" before she was under its power; for she could 
not be personally exempted, unless it had a hold upon her 
personally ; and by saying that she was exempted through 
Christ's merits, it is involved and implied that she was ex- 
empted ; and through Christ's merits she could not be ex- 
empted from something in which she had no part ; and Christ's 
merits exempt only from sin and its consequences. 

Thus the dogma, in declaring that Mary had no original 
sin, and yet was redeemed by Christ, contains contradictory 
positions. 

In the second place, the dogma is fatally defective in the 
view of original sin, on which it rests, and with which alone 
it is consistent. It contains the vital defect, the semi-Pela- 
gianism of the Roman Catholic theology on this point, against 
which all the Protestant confessions have protested as unscrip- 
tural. The Roman Catholic doctrine puts the essence of 
original sin solely in defect, makes it negative; asserting that 
it is only the want of that righteousness in which Adam 
was created : this is in scholastic usage the " formal " part, 
or the very essence of original sin. Concupiscence is not of 
the nature of sin. This is the doctrine of original sin, which 
Perrone expressly lays down, in the opening of his treatise, 
(pp. 2, 3, sq.,) " that the essence of original sin is in the de- 
feet of grace or of original righteousness."* This is the only 

* The Council of Trent, as is well known, is not explicit in its de- 
finition of original sin. Sess. v. 2, declares, that Adam's sin involved 
the forfeiture of original righteousness on the part of his descend- 
ants, and also that sin itself, "the death of the soul," was trans- 
mitted. Cat. Rom., 3, 10, 6, avows, that concupiscence was made 
inordinate in all by the fall. But this concupiscence is not held by 
that Church to be of the nature of sin ; so Bellarmine, de amiss, gra- 
tioe, says, the difference of man after the fall compared with his state 
"in puris naturalibus" is only as the difference of the " spoliatus a 
nudo ;" and that the corruption of nature is produced only by the 
loss of supernatural endowments. To the same effect, Mohler in his 
" Symbolism." This doctrine is in opposition to Augustin, with whom 



34 IMMACULATE CONCEPTION OF MARY. 

view of the matter with which the dogma of the Immaculate 
Conception can possibly be reconciled. If this view is false 
— if original sin, as Protestants hold ; according to the 
Scriptures, be positive and not negative, and come by descent, 
then the conclusion is irresistible, that Mary, by descent, must 
have had a part therein. The dogma of her Immaculate Con- 
ception is possible only with a false view of the nature of the 
11 sin of birth." Augustin could not have held it, nor could 
Aquinas. The dogma is conceived in a defective notion of 
original sin. 

Yet again, even with this defective view of original sin, 
the dogma is involved in difficulties and internal conflicts, by 
what it asserts and implies as to the origin of the soul of 
Mary. The theory on which it rests is, that Mary's soul 
was directly created by God. It declares that the Virgin 
Mary, " at the first instant of her conception," was preserved 
immaculate. What is meant by " conception" here ? It is 
the so-called " passive conception," or the infusion of the 
soul into the body, the union of the soul of Mary with the 
body, prepared beforehand in the "active conception." 
Whence, now, this soul ? It was " created." The " Letters," 
in another passage, say that Mary was the " tabernacle created 
by God himself." Pius IX. also cites the formula of Alex- 
ander VII. as having " decretive" authority, and that formula 
declares, " that Mary's soul, at the first instant of creation 
and of infusion into the body," was preserved free from 
original sin. And this hypothesis of " creatianism " is also 
the only hypothesis consonant with the doctrine. 

But now put these two positions together, namely, that 
original sin consists essentially in privation — that is, in the 
defect of original justice — and that Mary's soul was directly 



" concupiscence" is of the essence of original sin. (Contra Jul., lib. 
ii. • and Nupt. et Cone, ii. 8.) Anselm brought into vogue the for- 
mula, " Nuditas justitioo debitte," as giving the essence of original 
sin: against him is Peter Lombard. Aquinas attempts a reconcilia- 
tion, by saying that the "defect of original justice is the formal 
cause," and that concupiscence is the "proper matter and substance" 
of original sin. (Summa. i. 2; qu. 82: art. iii. 1 : "Et ita pecea- 
tum originale materialiter quidem est coriciipiseentia, formaliter vero 
est defectus originalis justitioo.") Duns Scotus puts the essence in the 
"privation," and declares it cannot be in the "concupiscence." See 
Winer, Ko'llner, Mohler, in their "Symbolisms." 



IMMACULATE CONCEPTION OF MARY. 35 

created by Grod, and we arrive at the following difficulties and 
dilemmas. The position is this : When Mary's soul was cre- 
ated and infused into her body, she was by grace preserved 
free from original sin. Would the original sin, from which 
she was kept, have come to her from her body, or from her 
soul ? — for it must have come from one or the other. 
If you say that it would have come from the soul, that in- 
volves the consequence that Grod usually creates original sin 
in the soul, before it is united with the body, and, of course, 
before it is connected with Adam by descent. If you say, 
' on the other hand, that original sin would have come to Mary 
from her "active conception," that is, from her prepared 
body, then it was already there, in germ and seed, before the 
infusion of the soul. Grod either creates the human soul with 
original sin, or the original sin is from the parents. If the 
former, we have original sin without any connection with 
Adam ; if the latter, Mary must have been really possessed of 
it. But you say original sin consists in defect, privation, and 
that the dogma means that God created Mary's soul perfectly 
holy. But this raises another difficulty ; for it is also as- 
serted that he created her thus holy on the ground of Christ's 
merits, and that had it not been for Christ's merits she would 
have shared the sin of the race. This creation, now, must 
have been either through the race (the connection with 
Adam) or above the race, either mediate or immediate. If 
through the race, or mediate, then she must have had a part 
in its sinfulness ; if above the race, or an immediate creation, 
then there is no theological or rational ground for saying that, 
as far as her creation was concerned, she was liable to sin, or 
could be saved from it through Christ's merits. 

Nor can any relief be found by conjoining the two points, 
and asserting that the exejnption from original sin concerns 
the time or point of union of the soul with the body, the con- 
junction of the active with the passive conception. For the 
still unanswered question here is, and must be this : In the 
union of the soul with the body, from which of the two, soul 
or body, would the original sin have come, if grace had not 
prevented ? — for it must have come from one or the other. If 
you say, from the soul, then you would have original sin with- 
out any connection with Adam ; if you say, froni the body, 
then original sin must already have been there ; if you say ; 



36 IMMACULATE CONCEPTION OF MARY. 

from both together, this simply dodges the question, or else 
resolves original sin into some act consequent upon the union, 
that is, into actual transgression. 

Nor is the matter helped by saying that original sin is es- 
sentially negative, privative ; for the privation has respect to 
either the soul or the body, or to both conjoined, and the same 
dilemmas result. The " Letters Apostolic/' in other pass- 
ages, speak of the dogma in this wise : that the " Blessed 
Virgin was free from all contagion of body, soul, and mind ;" 
that she had " community with men only in their nature, but 
not in their fault /' and that " the flesh of the Virgin taken 
from Adam did not admit the stain of Adam, and on this ac- 
count that the most Blessed Virgin was the tabernacle created 
by God himself, formed by the Holy Spirit/' These expres- 
sions imply that the fault in the case could have been a fault 
of " nature /' that the contagion might have been of the 
" body ;" that the "stain from Adam" would, under other cir- 
cumstances, have come to her through the " flesh." But in her 
" active conception/' before the infusion of the soul and of 
grace, the "nature," the "body," the "flesh," were already 
extant, ere the "passive conception" took place: were they 
with or without the fault ? If with the fault, then you have 
original sin ; if without, then it would follow that the flesh, 
the body, the nature, be/ore the passive conception, had been 
already delivered from the bondage of corruption. In short, 
if original sin come from the race, from the " active con- 
ception," then Mary must have had it ; if it come from the 
" passive conception," then God is its direct author in every 
individual case. 

This dogma of the Immaculate Conception, then, contains 
contradictory elements : it rests on a false view of original 
sin. Even with that false view it cannot well be reconciled : 
it assumes the theory that souls are directly created, and here 
again it involves itself in inextricable difficulties in relation 
to original sin. It is opposed to Scripture, to tradition, and 
it is self-opposed. Yet it comes to us with the sanction and 
decree of an "infallible" authority, who says, "Let no man 
interfere with this our declaration, pronunciation, and defini- 
tion, or oppose and contradict it with presumptuous rashness. 
If any should presume (o assail it, let him know that he will 



IMMACULATE CONCEPTION OF MARY. 37 

incur the indignation of the Omnipotent God, and of his 
blessed apostles, Peter and Paul." 

Our review of this celebrated controversy and its results 
furnishes an instructive exemplification of the mode in which 
Rome develops doctrines. Nothing is clearer in the way of his- 
torical testimony than that this dogma is a novelty in the Chris- 
tian Church ; and nothing too, is more manifest, than that it 
has been developed into its present form by an inward neces- 
sity of the Roman system. Opposed to Scripture, to an- 
tiquity, and to great scriptural truths, it has still followed a 
law of development. It is the slow and sure eating of the 
poison which Rome received from a pagan antiquity, in the 
veneration, the cultus, the worship of that which is not God. 
This superstition infects the whole system of the Papacy : it 
belongs to its essence : it must work itself out to its legiti- 
mate results. In doing this it sets at naught the word of God, 
misinterprets ancient and authentic testimonies, is in conflict 
with the great truths of original sin and of the universal need 
of redemption ; yet it must still go on in its baleful develop- 
ment. The might of superstition is greater in the Church of 
the Papacy than the power of truth, than the divine oracles, 
than the consent of ancient times. And this is the real secret 
of the growth and present position of this dogma. The voice 
of superstition, the paganism of Romanism, demand the en- 
thronement of a creature. 

The decreed dogma lends the authentic sanction of Rome 
to that cultus of the Virgin, which has been growing for many 
centuries, and which, in the " Glories of Mary/' had reached 
its popular culmination. There it is asserted, "that it is 
morally impossible for those who neglect the devotion to the 
blessed Virgin to be saved :" " he who is not protected by 
Mary cannot be saved." Suarez teaches, that "it is the sen- 
timent of the Church that the intercession of Mary is not 
only useful, but necessary," and " that Christ is never found 
except through Mary." Liguori also adds that " Mary is 
a mediatrix of grace," and that " we receive through Mary's 
intercession all the graces we ask" — that " God will not grant 
his graces without her intercession." " The throne of grace 
is Mary." " We must go to a sacrament," says M. Olier, in 
a Catechism approved by Roman bishops, " which is solely of 
9 



38 IMMACULATE CONCEPTION OF MARY. 

mercy, and wherein Jesus Christ exercises no judgment. This 
sacrament is the most blessed Virgin. It is through her that 
we have access to Jesus Christ in full confidence." " There 
is and can be no truer test of one's active, living faith in our 
holy religion, in the redemption and salvation of sinners 
through the cross, than a firm attachment to the worship of 
Mary."* " Mary is the channel through which our Lord dis- 
penses his graces, and he dispenses none save through her 
intercession." And the pope, in his Encyclical of February 
2, 1849, says, that God " would have us possess all through 
Mary." 

In this arrogant decree of the supreme pontiff, we read the 
meaning of the ultramontane claim of infallibility as centring 
in the see of Peter. It is the triumph of the Papal over 
the Episcopal system : it involves the position that the pope 
alone is the final arbiter of doctrine, that in him is the seat of 
infallibility. Whether this decree will be recognized as having 
final authority, or whether there is any vestige of the old 
Grallican liberties left in France, or of Episcopal independence 
in Germany — whether the Dominicans will bow their heads 
in subjection, remains to be seen. The pretension to sole and 
supreme infallibility cannot be more decidedly advanced than 
in the words of the " Letters," in the most formal part, when 
announcing the dogma itself: "We resolved that we should 
no longer delay to sanction and define by our supreme au- 
thority," etc. It involves the pretension to infallibility in 
matters of fact as well as of doctrine, for this dogma is about 
a fact. In this omniscient prerogative thus claimed, is yet 
another instance of the necessary development of the papal 
system. To this it must come. The final decision about all 
spiritual truth must be claimed for and by the successor of 
Peter. What Scripture means, what tradition is, he is to de- 
cide, and he alone in the last resort. What though Scrip- 
ture be annulled ! what though tradition be defied and re- 
versed ! it is still an infallible utterance. Though pope speak 
against pope, the Papacy is infallible. The last pope only 
needs to say that the others agreed with him, and it is infal- 

* Brownson's Keview, January, 185:5. Our own land, by the re- 
quest of the Sixth Provincial Council of Baltimore, in 1846, has been 
put, by a formal decree of the General Congregation of the Propa- 
ganda, (1847,) under the protection of Mary "immaculate conceptn." 



IMMACULATE CONCEPTION OF MARY. 39 

libly true, and no private judgment may "think" otherwise. 
Never has a pope in such an authoritative way, without appeal 
to him, by his own motion, so distinctly interfered in respect 
to a religious truth, more boldly proclaimed himself the final 
arbiter. Divine Providence has permitted and decreed that 
the inherent tendencies of the Papal system, in respect to 
both the worship of the creature and the claim of infallibility, 
should work themselves out to their utmost verge and culmi- 
nation together, that it might be most apparent what the 
papal system really is. 

Infallibility, in this dogma and decree, sets its seal to idol- 
atry. In the person of the pope the two are married. Infal- 
libility stamps a Pagan lie as Christian truth, and thus dis- 
proves itself. Is not the decree idolatrous ? Read its own 
words : " The mother of God approaches as nearly to God as 
created nature can do, and is more exalted than all human 
and angelic encomiums :" she is " the first and the peculiar 
work of God :" she is " alone with her Son partaker of 
perpetual benediction :" she " has brought salvation to 
the world :" she is the " most illustrious glory and orna- 
ment, and most firm guardian of the Holy Church :' ; to her 
it is ascribed that "heresies are destroyed/' "all calamities 
averted/' and even that " the sinner may obtain pardon/' and 
the consummation of this adoration is found in the exhorta- 
tion : " Let all the children of the Catholic Church, with a 
more ardent zeal of piety, religion, and love, proceed to wor- 
ship, invoke, and pray to the most blessed Virgin Mary, 
mother of God, conceived without original sin." If this be 
not idolatry, there cannot be any idolatry. If this be idol- 
atry, then the infallible Papal Church has ceased to be the 
Church of Christ, and has become the Church of Mary. 

And the juncture at which this decree is uttered is also 
providential. Never were the claims of the Papacy more 
fully scrutinized, and never has its fatuity been more manifest. 
It is the dogmatism of an infatuated pride. The nations are 
in arms : they are hungering for the bread of life. They need 
Christ, and Rome gives them Mary. They need an almighty 
helper, and the Papacy gives them a deified woman. The 
heart of the conflict of Europe, deeper than all its politics, 
deeper than all its social needs, is in the question between 
Romanism and Protestantism — between the Church of Christ 



40 IMMACULATE CONCEPTION OP MARY. 

and the Church of the Papacy; between reason and faith 
on the one side, and superstition against reason and Script wn 
on the other. At such a juncture, the very crisis of its fate 
Rome speaks to the listening nations : she sends forth he 
thousand missives : she calls her archbishops and bishops fron 
afar : in " Letters Apostolic/' which once would have in 
spired, as no other word of mortal man, both faith and fear 
she addresses, in the name of God, the nations of the whol< 
earth, which she claims as her rightful heritage, and all thi 
" consolation," all the "hope," all the "succor" which sh 
can offer is to command them to address their prayers unto 
and to put their confidence in, the Virgin Mary, conceive* 
without the stain of original sin ! " For," says Pius IX. 
" nothing is to be feared and nothing is to be despaired o 
under her guidance, under her auspices, under her favoi 
under her protection !" 

Such a decree at such a juncture proves that the day o 
Rome is past and her doom at hand. 

As ever of old, the true Church of Christ, his only bride 
which makes not flesh its arm, is to bind closer to her hear 
the name of him, the only Saviour, whose is the only nam* 
given under heaven among men whereby we must be saved 
Against the power of infidelity and of superstition, both ar 
rayed in hostility to Christ, his name is the sign and pledgi 
of final victory. 

Kashville, Tenn. : Published by E. Stevenson k J\ A. Owen, for the M. E. Church, South. 



No. 31. 



THE WORSHIP OF MARY. 



Who is my mother, and who are my brethren? — For whosoever 
shall do the will of my Father which is in heaven, he is my brother, 
and sister, and mother. — Matt. xii. 48, 50. 

A certain woman from the crowd lifting up her voice said to him, 
Blessed is the womb that bore thee, and the paps that gave thee suck. 
But he said : Yea, rather, blessed are they who hear the word of God 
and keep it. — Luke xi. 27, 28. 

If any man sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesu8 
Christ the just ; and he is the propitiation for our sins. — 1 John 
ii. 1, 2. 

And whatsoever you shall ask the Father in my name, that will I 
do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. — John xiv. 13. 

Let us go therefore with confidence to the throne of grace, that we 
may obtain mercy, and find seasonable aid. — Heb. iv. 16. 

Rheims' Roman Catholic Version of the New Testament. 

Reader, do you feel that you are a sinner? "All have 
sinned/' Rom. iii. 23 ; and " the wages of sin is death/' 
Rom. vi. 23. Do you then dread the danger — everlasting 
ruin ? If you do, bear in mind, there is only one way of 
escape — a living faith in the Lord Jesus. " Neither is there 
salvation in any other/' Acts iv. 12. It is a sure and safe 
way; for his blood "cleanseth from all sin/' 1 John i. 7 
And the apostle Paul says, " There is now no condemnation 
to them which are in Christ Jesus/' Rom. viii. 1. But 
Satan will do all he can to keep you from feeling that you 
are a sinner. He will strive to hide your real danger from 
you. He will not let you come to Christ if he can hinder 
you. He blinds the minds of unbelievers, 2 Cor. iv. 4. The 
object of this paper is to lead you to forsake sin, and to love 
and serve the Lord Jesus, who deserves your love, and claims 
your service. It invites you to consider the freeness and 
fullness of his salvation — with nothing to clog its freeness, or 
to limit its fullness. Oh ! is it not a glorious truth, and 



& THE WORSHIP OP MARY. 

worthy of your deepest attention, to know that, however 
ignorant, poor, or despised, however destitute, afflicted or 
forsaken you may be, you can ask of God, for Christ's sake, 
to give you his Holy Spirit? And if the Holy Spirit 
induces you to trust in the Lord Jesus, and in him only, 
you shall receive the pardon of all your sins, grace to enable 
you to conquer Satan, and you shall at last obtain a crown of 
glory. 

But remember, nothing you can do or suffer can merit for- 
giveness. Mercy to man is the just reward of merit in 
Christ, " who his own self bare our sins in his own body on 
the tree/' 1 Peter ii. 24. "For by grace are ye saved 
through faith ; and that not of yourselves : it is the gift 
of G-od : not of works, lest any man should boast," Eph. 
ii. 8, 9. 

And here we must find fault, great fault, with the Church 
of Rome, because she keeps her members from coming to 
Jesus. Would to Grod there were no reason for making such 
a heavy charge ! It gives deep sorrow to the humble follower 
of the Lamb, to see those who profess and call themselves 
Christians erring and straying from the holy commandment 
which has been given to guide us in the right way. The 
charge is a grave one. But let the Roman Catholic reader 
consider what his Church teaches him to rely upon — prayers 
and pardons, penances and pilgrimages — upon his own works 
and the works of mortals like himself — upon masses, scapu- 
lars, gospels, and relics — upon saints and angels ; and, above 
all, upon the intercession of the blessed Virgin. We shall 
take up this last ground of dependence, and examine it 
You know it is a chief one. Your Church sends you to her 
under all circumstances. In the breviary, her priests are 
taught to pray thus : — 

"We fly to thy protection, holy mother of God. Despise not our 
entreaties in our necessities, but always free us from all dangers, 
glorious and blessed Virgin." 

Again : — 

" Mary, mother of grace, sweet parent of mercy ! protect us from 
our enemy, and receive us in the hour of death." 

Such was not the dependence of the holy martyr, Stephen, 



THE WORSHIP OF MARY. 3 

•who, in his dying moments, exclaimed, not Mary, receive 
me, but, " Lord Jesus, receive my spirit I" Acts vii. 59. 

Catholic Piety, p. 195. — " Thou knowest, most sacred Virgin, 
that I have been taught from my infancy to look up to thee as my 
mother, my patroness, and most powerful advocate; and thou hast 
vouchsafed from on high to look down upon me as one of thy 
children." 

Hebdomas Mariana, p. 4. — " Holy Mary, queen of clemency, I 
flee under thy protection and shield of defence. Under the cover- 
ing of thy wings and maternal guardianship, I desire to live and 
die." 

Glories of Mart, p. 70. — " But if my Saviour drive me off because 
of my sins, I shall go and cast myself at the feet of his mother, 
and her pity "will soften the anger of her Son. Kegard us, then, 
Mary, most merciful, for we your servants place all hope in you." 
P 125. — "You, holy Virgin, can effect by your prayers all that 
God can operate by his power." P. 166. — "We read in the chronicles 
of St. Francis, that brother Leo once saw in a vision two ladders, 
one red, at the summit of which was Jesus Christ ; the other white, 
at the top of which presided the blessed mother. He observed that 
many who endeavored to ascend the first ladder, after mounting a 
few steps fell down, and trying again were equally unsuccessful, so 
that they never attained the summit. But a voice having told them 
to make a trial of the white ladder, they soon gained the top, the 
blessed Virgin having held forth her hand to help them." 

Novenas, p. 64. — " Thou art the dispenser of all the graces God 
confers upon us, miserable creatures." 

Page 45. — "Eefuge of sinners, asylum always open to the most 
desponding, you are the safeguard against the stroke of Divine 
justice." 

Months of Mary, p. 9. — "You are the only advocate of sinners, 
says St. Ephrem." 

Sacred Heart of Mary, p. 381. — "My father, think you that 
Mary will again hear my vows, and avert the vengeance of her Son ?" 

Pope Gregory XVI. says, " Let us raise our eyes to the blessed 
Virgin Mary, who alone destroys heresies, who is our greatest hope, 
yea, the entire ground of our hope," " Imo tota ratio est spei nostrse." 

Surely it is plain from the above extracts, that you ascribe 
to Mary the power of knowing the hearts, and of hearing the 
prayers of all who address her. It is God alone who is 
always and everywhere present, and knows all we do, and 
hears all we say; and to ascribe these to a creature, as Mary 
assuredly was, is nothing less than blasphemy. Of Almighty 



4 TIIE WORSHIP OP MARY. 

God alone can it be said, "Thou only knowest the hearts of 
the children of men," 2 Chron. vi. 20. 

But supposing Mary could hear your prayers, we would 
ask*you, do you think that she is more willing to hear, or 
more merciful to help you, than the compassionate Jesus? 
You will say, I am not fit to come directly to Christ, I am 
too great a sinner. But does he not invite all sinners to come 
to him ? Did he ever cast the returning sinner from him ? 
Never, for he says, "I came not to call the righteous, but 
sinners to repentance." Did he not pardon the penitent 
woman ? and did he not say to the thief on the cross, " To- 
day shalt thou be with me in paradise ?" Why then should 
you fear to go at once to him ? Is he not man to sympathize 
with, as well as God to save you ? " For we have not an 
ITio-'h-Priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our 
infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet 
without sin. Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne 
of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help 
in time of need," Heb. iv 15, 16. Does not the Church 
of Rome, then, in teaching her members to pray to and to 
ask the prayers of the Virgin Mary, as much as say that 
the Lord Jesus does not, feel for them : that unless they get 
some one to plead with him, he will not hear them, nor be 
their intercessor ? Does not such a supposition east dis- 
honor upon him, as well as discredit upon what he himself 
has said, " Whatsoever ye shall ask of the Father in my name, 
he will give it you?" John xv. 16. And does it not virtually 
set aside the solemn assurance of one of his holy apostles, 
" Wherefore he is able to save them to the uttermost that come 
unto God by him, seeing he ever liveth to make intercession 
for them V Heb. vii. 25. 

When Roman Catholics are asked why they pray to Mary, 
and ask her prayers, the usual answer is this : We only act 
as men do in common life. If we want a favor from a great 
man, we get some one who has mueh influence with him to 
ask it for us. Would you not, they ask, do this ? AVe 
answer, Yes. And would you not be more likely to get it ? 
We answer, Yes, in some cases. Well, then, continues the 
Romanist, this is just what we do : we think the blessed Virgin 
has great influence with Jesus; and we pray to her to ask 
him for what we want. 



THE WORSHIP OF MART. 5 

Now there are several reasons to show that this is not a fair 
way to argue on this question. 

In the first place, the great man you speak of, from whom 
you want the favor, has not said, Whenever you want any 
thing from me, come to myself, and I will give it to you. 
But Jesus has invited every one who desires the salvation 
of his soul, to come to him, and declares he will not cast 
him out ; for he says, " Gome unto me, all ye that labor and 
are heavy laden, and I will give you rest;" and, "Him 
that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out/' Matt. xi. 28, 
and John vi. 37. In the second place, the great man, it may 
be, knows nothing about us, and requires some person to tell 
him who we are, what is our character, and if we are fit per- 
sons to get what we are asking for. But the Lord Jesus 
knows us altogether ; as the apostle Peter said, " Lord, thou 
knowest all things," John xxi. 17 Or a third reason for 
getting some one to speak to this great man for us may be 
this : he may not care any thing about us, and if he grants 
us a favor, it is because of the interest that is made for 
us. But is not Jesus more willing to give than we to ask ? 
Will you, then, compare him to a frail, short-sighted, fallible, 
mortal man ? No, no ! The two cases then are not similar. 
The Saviour tenderly cares for us, intimately knows us, and 
graciously invites us to come to him. He that counts the 
wrongs done to his people as done to himself, (Acts ix. 4,) 
will not be unmindful of our prayers. He is willing to save 
and defend us from all dangers, and to carry us through all 
temptations. ! then, will you, without any reason, 
continue to pray to the Virgin instead of himself, and thus 
cast discredit upon the Saviour's mediation? Will you 
continue to seek the aid of a creature, when you can have 
the effectual aid of the Creator, who has said, "All power is 
given unto me in heaven and in earth ?" Matt, xxviii. 20. 

But you will answer, My Church teaches me to seek the 
aid of the blessed Virgin. Well, why does your Church do 
so? Has the Church of Rome the authority of Christ, or 
of any one of his apostles, for such teaching? This is a 
plain question, and any man who is able to read the New 
Testament can answer it. 

(1.) If you prefer the Rheims' Testament, a Roman 
Catholic version, read in it the two passages, Matt. xii. 
9* 



6 THE WORSHIP ©F MART. 

48, 50, and Luke xi. 27, 28, as quoted in the beginning of 
this paper. Would it not seem that what the Lord Jesus 
says in these two places, was designed to guard against the 
error your Church has fallen into, in praying to and asking 
the prayers of the Virgin? He there says, "Whosoever 
shall do the will of my Father which is in heaven, the 
same is my brother, and sister, and mother;" and declares 
that those are more blessed who "hear the word of God, 
and keep it," than was even his own mother, Matt. xii. 50; 
Luke xi. 27. 

(2.) When our Lord was on earth, and went about doing 
good — healing the sick, raising the dead, and casting out 
devils — we never read of any persons asking Mary to intercede 
with him for them. And surely Jesus is not less willing to 
hear and to help us now than he was then. He is " the 
same yesterday, and to-day, and for ever," Heb. xiii. 8. 

(3.) He has also taught us much in what he said and 
did, as to the matter and manner of prayer — what to pray 
for, how to pray, and through whom to pray. Yet he has 
nowhere stated or even hinted that we are to seek the aid 
of Mary. But does any one of the holy apostles teach us 
to ask her aid ? St. Paul, as you know, was a chief teacher 
of the Christian religion. Examine all that is recorded of 
him in the Acts, and also those fourteen epistles which he 
wrote for the guidance of the churches, one of them, a long 
one, to the ancient church of Home. In these epistles he 
gives special directions for prayer; and if it were the custom, 
duty, and privilege of Christians to ask the aid of Mary, is it 
at all probable that he would be wholly silent on the subject? 
And yet we find that Paul never once mentions her name. 
We find the same thing with regard to Peter's sermons in 
the Acts, and also his two epistles, written for the guidance 
of Christians, scattered through various countries. Does he 
instruct them, either by precept or example, to ask the aid 
of Mary? No ! he never once refers to her, or even mentions 
her name. We have yet the beloved disciple, John, to 
whom his dying Master committed the care of his broken- 
hearted mother, saying to her, " Woman, behold thy son !" 
and to John, " Behold thy mother ! and from that hour that 
disciple took her unto his own home," John xix. 25-27. 
Surely if it is right to ask the aid of Mary, John, by precept 



THE WORSHIP OF MARY. 7 

or example, must teach it. In his three epistles, and the book 
of Revelation, he also never mentions her name ; neither does 
James or Jude. 

And now ask yourself, if your Church, in teaching you to 
pray to or to ask the prayers of Mary, teach as the Lord 
Jesus and his apostles taught of old. Eomanist writers, 
indeed, are obliged to admit that the apostles not only do 
not pray to the Virgin, but are perfectly silent about her. 
This has been a troublesome silence to the advocates of the 
worship of the Virgin. Alanus, in 1170, tries to account 
for it thus : — " It was not the time, in the infancy of the 
faith, to teach this doctrine, lest the heathen should think 
we worship a plurality of gods, and had only chaDged their 
names." And a late writer says, " It did not come within 
the scope of the apostles to mention the name of the blessed 
Virgin; they had something else to do." We certainly 
think, with Alanus, that it is very like the heathen to have 
so many objects of worship. And we quite agree with 
the last-mentioned writer that the apostles had something 
else to do. 

But we would ask any candid Romanist, if the apostles had 
.been in the habit of addressing prayers to her — if they 
believed she was to be invoked as the "mother of grace, 
the sweet parent of mercy" — if they had taught such 
doctrines as are to be found in one of the most approved books 
of private devotion, (the Grlories of Mary,) "that her pity 
was to soften the anger of her Son" — if they held that "he 
who neglects Mary shall die in his sins, and that he for 
whom Mary pleads is as sure of being saved as if he were 
already in heaven :" if the apostles taught thus, could they 
have written so many epistles and said so much about the 
mercy of G-od, the compassion of Jesus — about the way of 
obtaining forgiveness of sins — about Christ interceding for 
sinners — could they have offered so many prayers, or written 
so much for the direction, the comfort, and encouragement of 
Christians, and never say one word about Mary, about our 
praying to her or her praying for us ? Observe, here is not 
" discreet reserve," but dead silence. But are we for a 
moment to suppose, if it was the will of G-od and the duty 
of Christians to seek for the intercession of the Virgin, that 
the apostles who went forth with the great commission of 



gs 



8 THE WORSHIP OP MARY. 

their Divine Master, to teach all nations to observe all thin 
whatsoever he had commanded them, (Matt, xxviii. 19, 2U,) 
and to declare openly his most secret instructions, (x. 27,) 
kept back any thing they were commanded to teach ? No, 
no ! One of them (Paul) assures us that he had not shunned 
to declare the whole counsel of God, Acts xx. 27 As to their 
" reserve'' on the doctrines of the Trinity and the Eucharist, 
which a modern writer compares to their silence about Mary, 
read their epistles, and you will find that there is no "reserve" 
on these subjects. 

Weigh well then this remarkable fact, namely, the total 
silence of the apostles, in their sermons and epistles, about 
the Virgin Mary. It is clear to demonstration they did not 
pray to her. It is certain they did not teach us to pray to 
her. And we learn from Acts x. 25, 26, and xiv. 13-18, 
that Peter, Paul, and Barnabas, when on earth, would not 
allow any religious reverence to be paid to themselves. Is it 
right to give it to them now ? Nor would the angel (Rev. 
xxii. 9) permit John to worship him: " Then saith he unto 
me, See thou do it not : worship God." If it were wrong 
in John's time to worship an angel, can it be right now? If 
then you cannot trace up the invocation of saints and angels 
to the command of Christ or his apostles, will you not at 
once abandon it ? Will you, dare you, continue to do what 
Peter and the rest of the apostles did not do, or recommend 
to be done ? Grod forbid ! 

We shall now say a few words upon three points connected 
with Romanist devotion to Mary, namely, the immaculate 
conception — which the Pope pronounced an article of faith, 
December 8, 1854 — the assumption, and the miracles attri- 
buted to the Virgin. A Romanist once asked, " How could 
the Virgin Mary bear a son without the stain of original sin, 
if not free from it herself?" It was replied that this was 
not a good argument, as it would prove too much. It would 
prove that Eve was uncorrupted by sin. For if Mary could 
not bear a son free from original sin, unless free from it 
herself, she could not bo free unless her mother were, and 
then her mother again, and so on, up to Eve. But there is 
not a shadow of proof that Mary was born without the .stain 
of original sin. Christ alone was " without sin," Heb. iv. 
15. The apostle Paul declares that "death passed upon 



THE WORSHIP OF MARY. 9 

all men, for that all have sinned," Rom. v. 12. Now as 
it is admitted that Mary died like other servants of God, and 
as it was sin, Paul says, that brought death into the world, 
would Mary have died if she had not sinned ? Certainly 
not. It is true that Christ died while yet he was free from 
all sin ; but he "died for our sins according to the Scriptures/ ; 
1 Cor. xv. 3. 

Again, as to the assumption of the Virgin Mary. The 
writer once asked an intelligent laboring man, " Why has 
each shop a shutter or two up to-day ?" He said, " This is 
the feast of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin." We 
asked what he meant by that ? He replied, "About thirteen 
years after our Lord's ascension, the blessed Virgin was 
taken up to heaven, and crowned queen of angels and 
saints." We then asked where he had learned all this ? 
He answered, "In the New Testament, to be sure." We 
said we could with confidence assure him, as we now assure 
you, that not one word of all he had stated was in the New 
Testament. The Church of Rome teaches that the Virgin 
died in the presence of all the apostles, (see Brev. Aug. and 
Novenas, p. 45.) Yet these apostles and the evangelists, 
who wrote the whole of the New Testament, except Matthew's 
Gospel, after the period of her supposed assumption, do not 
once mention it. 

Again, the Virgin is said to have performed innumerable 
miracles at the present day. We hear of even her " mira- 
culous picture" moving its eyes for the benefit of the 
faithful, as Pius the Ninth says ; and of another picture 
bleeding. But is it not natural to ask, Did Mary perform 
any miracles during her lifetime? The New Testament 
does not record even one. Put this fact beside the stories 
of her miracles- after her death, and is it not irreconcilable 
with them? Here then are three leading doctrines taught 
by the Church of Rome, about which the New Testament is 
wholly silent. 

Lastly, let us notice the arguments by which Roman Catholics 
defend themselves against the charge of idolatry in their 
invocation of the Virgin. 

First. They say they do not ask her for grace or mercy, 
or ask through her merits : they only ask her to pray for them. 
But how will this agree with the following ? — 



10 THE WORSHIP OP MART. 

Novenas, p. 26. — "We petition thee with the most fervent affec- 
tion, to be this day spiritually born by thy holy love within our 
souls." Page 50. — "0 blessed Lady, change us from sinners to 
saints." Page 60. — "Thou canst cure all our infirmities." Page 
62. — "0 Mary, make me truly holy." Page 57. — "Through the 
merits of thy happy death, obtain for us holy perseverance." 

Sacred Heart op Mary, p. 409, — " Most holy mother, I offer 
thee all my thoughts, all my affections, all my prayers and alms. 
Mary, my good mother, preserve me this day from 
sin." 

Psalter of our*Lady, Psalm 50. — "Have mercy on me, Lady, 
who art called the mother of mercy."* 

"Holy Mary, mother of Christ, blot out all my sins, reign in my 
heart, and bring me to happiness, with God alone." 

Examine these authorized prayers as well as those extracts 
from Roman Catholic books of devotion, and ask, Is it 
possible that those who employ such language as this, only 
mean by all this to ask the Virgin to pray for them ? Nay, 
is it not an express violation of the solemn command, "Thou 
shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him only shalt thou 
serve V Matt. iv. 10. 

Secondly. — They say the strong language of their prayers 
is not to be taken literally, if so, "it would prove them 
guilty of idolatry." Mark this: the advocates of your 
Church admit that if you use the language of your prayers 
in the literal sense, you are idolaters. Observe then, it is 
only by stopping short in your mind of the natural lan- 
guage of your lips, that you escape the awful sin of idolatry. 
We must judge prayers addressed to the Virgin by their 
letter and spirit ; and thus interpreted, they are such as no 
person ought to address to any creature, and they involve the 
grossest idolatry. 

In conclusion, while Protestants are accused of putting 
dishonor on the virgin mother of Christ, let the Roman 
Catholic reader be well assured that this is quite a mistake, 
and shows great ignorance of our principles. We also 



* St. Bonaventura, canonized by Pope Sixtus IV. in 1482, and 
called by him the "Seraphic Doctor," published a Psalter, that is, an 
edition of the Psalms of David, throughout which the name of Mary 
is substituted for the name of God! la not this idolatry of the most 
fearful description ? 



THE WORSHIP OF MARY. 11 

honor the Virgin, and cordially believe the salutation of the 
angel, Luke i. 28 : " Hail, full of grace, the Lord is with 
thee : blessed art thou among women." But the Church 
of Rome adds to this salutation, and turns it into a prayer 
to the Virgin, and this when Mary is dead, saying, " Pray 
for us now and at the hour of death," while no such words 
are found in Scripture, and forgetting that the angel addressed 
her when she was alive and in his presence. We also 
regard Mary as "highly favored," and "blessed," but we 
do not consider that because she is "blessed," this is any 
reason for worshipping her. We read, " Blessed are the poor 
in spirit, the merciful, the meek," etc., Matt. v. ; and 
"Blessed is he whose transgression is forgiven," Psa. xxxii. 
1; yet we do not pray to such persons. We desire then to 
honor Mary as we find her honored in the Bible : we dare 
not do more. G-od is a jealous God, and he will not give 
his glory to another, Isa. xlii. 8 j therefore all religious 
honors must be given to him alone. Let it be remembered 
that while we have promises and examples to encourage us 
to pray for others, and to ask good men to pray for us, it is 
only while they are on earth. Thus Elijah said to Elisha, 
"Ask what I shall do for thee, before I be taken away from 
thee," 2 Kings ii. 9. 

And, ! if you seek for the intercession of the Virgin 
Mary, surely this not only derogates from the Redeemer's 
mediation, but must draw away from him the feeling of 
entire dependence and supreme affection. The writer has 
conversed with many who have been rigid Romanists, and 
they all agreed that persons accustomed to pray much to the 
Virgin, regarded her with more heartfelt attachment than 
the Lord Jesus Christ. Surely it is impossible 'that such 
devotions to the Virgin as those already quoted should not 
have this effect. How deadly therefore and destructive to 
the soul must such " devotions" be ! Jesus demands and 
deserves the entire and undivided affections of the heart. 
And his appeal to every reader is not, " Lovest thou 
Mary ?" but " Lovest thou me ?" " My son, give me thine 
heart." 

And now, dear reader, you are entreated to compare the 
Holy Scriptures with the Breviary, Missal, Poor Man's 
Manual, Catholic Piety, Garden of the Soul, Path of Paradise, 



12 THE WORSHIP OP MARY. 

Key of Heaven, and the Glories of Mary, and ask yourself, 
as in the presence of God, Can that Church he the Holy 
Catholic Apostolic Church which teaches a doctrine and 
enjoins a practice which the blessed book of God neither 
teaches nor enjoins, and which involves you in the awful sin 
of idolatry ? 

Remember, we beseech you, that Jesus himself has de- 
clared, " I am the WAY : no man cometh unto the Father 
BUT BY me," John xiv. 6 ; and that an inspired apostle 
assures you that there is " one God, and one Mediator between 
God and men, the man Christ Jesus," 1 Tim. ii. 5. Come, 
then, even now to the Father, pleading the merits and 
mediation of His dear Son. Abandon every "refuge of 
lies," in which those who are guilty of " teaching for doc- 
trines the commandments of men" would persuade you to 
trust; and in life and death let your entire confidence be 
placed in Him " who of God is made unto us wisdom, 

AND RIGHTEOUSNESS, AND SANCTIFICATION, AND REDEMP- 
TION," 1 Cor. i. 30. 



Nashville, Tenn. : Published by E. Stevenson & P. A. Owen, for the M. E. Church, South. 



No. 32. 



THE PORTRAIT OF MARY IN HEAVEN. 



FROM THE FRENCH OF N. ROUSSEL. 



Towards the close of the sixteenth century, the following 
correspondence took place between a young abbess and an 
illustrious painter : 

THE ABBESS TO THE PAINTER. 

St. Mary's Abbey, Aug. 15, 1564. 
My Brother, — For I may now address you as my 
brother, — I am placed at the head of a convent. I quitted 
the world without any great regret ; still, I confess that I feel 
the necessity of surrounding myself with some of those ele- 
gances which make a cloistered life more endurable. I am 
taking pains to redecorate my cell; and the thing I most 
want is a portrait of my gentle patroness. Next to a living 
being, nothing is such good company to me as a picture, — 
especially such pictures as yours. I write, then, to bespeak 
from you, at any price you think proper to fix, a portrait, as 
faithful as possible, of the Most Holy Virgin. You under- 
stand, I wish it faithful, not imaginary.. Take time, fix your 
own conditions — I shall grudge nothing to gain this essential 
point of fidelity ; for I fancy that I could pray more earnestly 
to Mary if I could represent her to myself exactly as she is 
now in heaven. Awaiting your reply, I remain your humble, 
and, in anticipation, grateful sister, 

Maria de Saint-Roman. 

THE PAINTER TO THE ABBESS. 

Cloister of the Assumption, Sept. 30, 1564. 

My Sister : — You will see, by the date of this letter, that 
I, like you, have left the world ; but I have not renounced 



2 THE PORTRAIT OP MARY IN HEAVEN. 

painting. ^ It was, therefore, with most lively pleasure that I 

received in this solitude your order for a portrait of Mary. 

My labors from this time will at least have an object ; and in 

order to make them more enduring, I mean to compose this 

picture with all possible care. As you wish it, I shall devote 

my chief attention to the likeness. I shall await your advice 

on the subject ; but I think the following will be our wisest 

course to attain this end : — In the first place, I shall not copy 

any of the well-known portraits : for these, as you are aware, 

Mary did not sit herself, but the most beautiful woman whom 

the artist could find ; and often, alas 1 they resembled nothing 

so little as the Holy Virgin. Neither shall I consult the 

different legends, or the numerous lives of the Virgin, written 

a thousand years after the period when she lived. No : I 

must go back to the fountain-head, and seek in the Holy 

Scriptures themselves authentic particulars respecting Mary 

to guide my pencil into fidelity. I will promise you to leave 

nothing to chance, to permit nothing to imagination ; but to 

study the sacred text with minute attention, even should I 

consume several years of my life in the research. But a little 

obstacle presents itself: I have no Bible. I have searched 

in vain for one in the library of our convent, and I write to 

you to-day in the persuasion that you will be so fortunate as 

to find one in yours, and will allow me the use of it. I remain, 

humbly and respectfully, your brother, 

Joseph de Saint-Pierre. 

THE ABBESS TO THE PAINTER. 

St. Mary's Abbey, Dec. 1, loGl 

My Brother : — Your plan is charming ; and I imme- 
diately instituted a search for the book you want. Our con- 
vent does not afford one any more than your cloister ; but I 
wrote to Rome to request a copy from one of the libraries of 
the Holy Father. This favor has been granted me, and I 
send the holy volume with this letter. 

Now then, work on boldly. Meanwhile, I will pray Mary 
to condescend to guide your pencil, and I trust that some 
day you will be able to send me a work of which I shall be 
as glad as you can be proud. Again I repeat, take time, and 
do not send me the portrait till the likeness is exact. I 
remain, your sister, etc., Maria de Saint-Roman. 



THE PORTRAIT OF MARY IN HEAVEN. 3 

Two years passed away, and the correspondence then recom- 
menced as follows : — 

THE PAINTER TO THE ABBESS. 

Cloister of the Assumption, Jan. 4, 1566. 

My Sister : — Here is, at length, the work completed ! 
and a conscientiously faithful work, if ever there was one. 
But it is not enough to assert fidelity — I must also prove it ; 
for the portrait which I send you is such that you might 
question its likeness, if I did not set before you at length the 
authorities on which rest my pretensions to have achieved the 
most accurate portrait of the blessed Mary, as now in heaven, 
which has ever existed. I will, therefore, enter into detail 
on the subject. 

One of the most important points to know, in order to 
picture a face to yourself, is the person's age. On the arrival 
of your Bible, I therefore directed my first inquiries to Mary's 
age. I opened the Gospel according to St. Luke, and from 
the first page I observed that Elizabeth, who conceived only 
six months before Mary, was then " well stricken in years," 
which made me at first suspect that Mary, her cousin, could 
not be very young at the period when the daughter of her 
uncle or aunt was very old. But, on the whole, I would not 
attach much importance to this inference ; for Elizabeth and 
Mary might be the children of two brothers or sisters of very 
different ages. I only noted this point, that Mary's cousin 
was very old six months before the Holy Virgin received the 
angel Gabriel's visit. 

The second circumstance which came to my aid in fixing 
the age of Mary is, that when the miraculous conception took 
place she was already betrothed — whence I conclude that 
she was at a marriageable age. It is important that this 
starting-point should be determined : we do not risk too 
much in supposing that Mary was then twenty years old, 
especially when we remember that she was cousin to the 
respectable Elizabeth. Setting out thence, let us continue 
the reckoning. ' 

Mary was betrothed at twenty. After the betrothal, Joseph 
perceived her condition ; therefore, when she brought her 
son into the world, she must have been twenty and a half. 

From the first chapter of St. Luke I pass to the second, 



4 THE PORTRAIT OF MARY IN HEAVEN. 

and I see that Mary is still living, because she forgets the 
child Jesus in the temple of Jerusalem. Moreover, I see, 
from verse 42, that Jesus was then twelve years old : there- 
fore I conclude that Mary was at that time thirty-two and a 
half 

From the second I proceed to the third chapter, and therein 
I learn that Jesus was baptized by John, and began his holy 
ministry at thirty years. Now, Mary was still living, since, 
as you know, and as we shall see later, she outlived Jesus on 
the earth. I draw further this very clear and simple conclu- 
sion, that if the mother was twenty years and a half old at the 
birth of her child, when Jesus had attained the age of thirty 
Mary must have arrived at that of fifty and six months. 

Now, how long did the ministry of Jesus Christ last ? It 
was easy to calculate this by searching out, from the begin- 
ning to the end of the same Gospel, the number of different 
times during that ministry that Jesus went to celebrate the 
feast of the Passover at Jerusalem. Thus, in St. John ii. 
12, 13, I see that Jesus descends to Capernaum because the 
Passover was near. 

At the fifth chapter a feast occurs again, which must be 
the Passover, because St. Luke, chap, vi., refers the events 
here related to that epoch. 

At the sixth chapter, fourth verse, we find a third Passover. 

Lastly, chapter xiii., comes the fourth and last Passover, at 
which Jesus died. 

These four Passovers, contained in the ministry of Jesus 
Christ, do not allow us to suppose that it lasted less than 
three, or more than four years. I take the mean, and admit 
three years and a half. Now, if Mary was fifty years and a 
half old when Jesus began to preach, and if his ministry lasted 
three years and a half, Mary, when standing at the foot of the 
Saviour's cross, was exactly fifty-four. 

Here the Gospel finishes ; but the Acts of the Apostles 
commence, and there I find Mary again, at prayer with the 
disciples. Elsewhere I observed that, according to the order 
of Jesus, the Apostle John must have received Mary into his 
dwelling. How long did she remain there ? This the Holy 
Scriptures nowhere say, for there is no further mention of 
her whatever. Whether Mary lived one, two, three, ten, or 
twenty years, I know not. If I would follow the tradition of 



THE PORTRAIT OF MARY IN HEAVEN. 5 

the Church,I should be obliged to suppose that she lived a 
long while at Ephesus, where St. John was bishop ; but as I 
desire not to age Mary without an imperative necessity, I 
prefer, in the silence of the Holy Scriptures, to suppose that 
she dwelt in this inferior world only five or six years more, 
which makes her just sixty. It is at that age that Mary 
would ascend to heaven. But before we follow her there, let 
us study a few additional circumstances, which may aid in 
setting her appearance more correctly before us. 

If it be well for the painter to know the age of a woman, 
to aid him in gaining an idea of her countenance, another 
circumstance, no less helpful, is to ascertain whether the 
woman has had children, and how many. Never should I 
have dreamed of starting this question with regard to Mary, 
if certain passages which my eyes glanced upon in looking 
through the Gospels had not awakened my suspicions. 

The first hint which I received on this point, is at the last 
verse of the first chapter of St. Matthew. I saw that Jesus 
was called the "jirst-born" son of Mary; and that Joseph 
did not live with her, as her husband, "till" the birth of 
Jesus. The two words which I here underline appear to me 
significant. But this time also I would not hasten to a con- 
clusion, and I liked better to believe, before a still more evi- 
dent proof to the contrary, that Mary had no other children 
besides Jesus. 

Such was the tendency of my mind after reading the first 
chapter of St. Matthew ; and I greatly hoped that nothing, in 
advancing in the perusal, would oblige me to resist it. It was 
almost with terror that, on reaching chapter xii., I encountered 
these words : — "As Jesus was speaking to the people, his 
mother and his brothers, who were outside, asked to speak to 
him." "His brothers !'• I cried; "if Jesus had brothers, 
Mary then had several children ! No, no : it must not be 
thus. No doubt the word brother here means cousin: let us 
pass over it, and may God grant that no other difficulties may 
recall me to the argument V 

I went on, and immediately found the following lines : 
"And some one said to Jesus, Behold, thy mother and thy 
brothers are without, and ask to speak to thee. But Jesus 
answered him, Who is my mother, and who are my brothers ? 
And stretching out his hands over the disciples, he said, Be- 



6 THE PORTRAIT OF MARY IN HEAVEN. 

hold my mother and my brothers ! for whoever does the wili 
of my Father who is in heaven, he is my brother, my sister, 
and my mother." 

This close of the story only added to my embarrassment; 
for if, I reflected, the word brother means cousin in the first 
line, it ought also to mean cousin in the second. And in 
that case, Jesus would seriously have addressed to the crowd 
this burlesque phrase : " He who does the will of my Father 
who is in heaven, the same is my cousin I" This supposition 
is ridiculous, absurd, impossible ! This is to clothe in a gro- 
tesque form that thought — so touching in the noble expression 
of the Saviour — that we are brothers and sisters of Jesus 
Christ. 

You perceive it here becomes necessary to choose between 
two translations and their consequences : either Mary was 
accompanied by her nephews — therefore it is to cousins that 
Jesus compares the apostles, and thereby we lose the beau- 
tiful name of his brothers — or else she was surrounded by 
her own children ; but thus Mary loses her glorious title to a 
perpetual virginity. For my own part, I confess that, if one 
must absolutely make the election, I would rather think that 
Mary had several children, than disinherit the whole Church, 
the Christians of all ages, of the beautiful prerogative of being 
brothers and sisters of Jesus Christ. 

Nevertheless, we do not so easily renounce the ideas held 
since our tenderest infancy, and nourished during a whole 
life : although my mind was convinced, my heart was not 
won. I still inwardly resisted, and I hoped for an almost 
miracle to restore me to my former illusion. 

I turned the leaf, and I read the following chapter. Would 
you believe it ? To my great surprise, I saw, at verses fifty- 
five and fifty-six, that not only brothers of Jesus were men- 
tioned, but sisters too. The word cousin might possibly have 
been put for brother, for the Greek term (as a note in your 
Bible informs me) will bear both senses ; but alas ! the word 
sister absolutely cannot be taken in the sense of cousin ; for, 
according to a monk of our convent, whom I consulted, those 
two words are never used interchangeably in the original text 
of the New Testament. You may, therefore, yourself judge 
of the force of my argument, and that without understanding 
either Hebrew, Greek, or Latin. I reflected : There are in 



THE PORTRAIT OP MARY IN HEAVEN. 7 

this passage the Greek words adelphos and adelphe : now, 
since adelphe always in the Scriptures signifies sister, and 
never cousin, is it not evident that adelphos here means 
brother, and not cousin ? 

As for the rest, one reflection, suggested by good sense, 
settles the question : to make the word adelphos signify 
brother, it need only be taken in its ordinary sense ; but to 
make it mean cousin, it must be understood in its exceptional 
sense. If those who wrote the Bible had believed the per- 
petual virginity of Mary, surely they would have avoided the 
ambiguity. 

As soon as I had admitted this interpretation, a thousand 
other details came to the confirmation of my new opinion. 
Thus, in a passage which I am examining, the Nazarenes, 
astonished that Jesus, who had passed his childhood among 
them, should to-day be working miracles, exclaim : " Is not 
this the son of the carpenter ? is not his mother called Mary, 
his brothers, James, Joses, Simon, and Jude? and are not 
his sisters also with us V 

Now, when neighbors enumerate the members of a family, 
is it not natural to think that, after having named the father 
and mother, they would mention the names of the brothers 
and sisters rather than those of the cousins ? 

Finally, if Jesus were the only child of Mary, why does 
not the Holy Scripture say so ? It says, indeed, and that 
several times, that Jesus is the only Son of God ; why does 
it not say also, at least once, that he is the only son of Mary ? 
If the words are different, it is because the facts are different 
also. We must suppose that authors, inspired by the Holy 
Spirit, knew how to choose their expressions, and that they 
speak with equal truth when they call Jesus only Son of God 
and first-born son of Mary. 

From these considerations we must necessarily come to 
this conclusion : — Mary, after having conceived by the Holy 
Spirit, and brought into the world the only Son of God, had 
accomplished her supernatural task, and from that time reen- 
tered into the ordinary course of nature ; that is, became in 
all things the chaste wife of her husband Joseph. 

Now then, according to this thirteenth chapter of St. 
Matthew, Jesus had at this period four brothers and some 
sisters. The plural of the word sisters represents at least the 



8 THE PORTRAIT OF MARY IN HEAVEN. 

number two : I therefore draw this final inference : Mary had, 
as children — 

Jesus, her first-born, 
His four brothers. 
And his two sisters : 

in other words, Mary was mother of seven children. Now 
understand, my sister, that I felt it right to take account in 
my picture of this important circumstance, and slightly ema- 
ciate the features already aged. But if Mary's advanced age 
of sixty years, and her seven times renewed maternity, came 
to my aid to give her the respectable features of a holy and 
good mother, grown old in the experience of life, and, alasl 
in grief also — since the sufferings and death of her first-born 
son must have transpierced her soul like a sword — still none 
of this could yet teach me any thing of the expression of her 
face. Were her features beautiful and regular ? or had they 
nothing very remarkable in them ? The answer to this ques- 
tion appeared to me difficult to find. I even searched the 
whole New Testament, without discovering any thing in it to 
put me on the track of a direct solution. On the whole, I 
observed in every page a marked disdain for what has to do 
with mere outward form. Thus God willed that his divine 
Son should be born in a manger — should live with artisans — 
should die on a cross. All through the Gospel the flesh is 
abased and the spirit exalted; therefore appearance is despised 
and reality required. Throughout, the body of the Christian 
is counted for little, and his soul for much ; consequently, I 
inclined toward the opinion that such was also the case with 
the body of Jesus Christ, when a passage of the Old Testa- 
ment came to confirm me in it. Notice how Isaiah describes 
the exterior of the Messiah : — " He hath no form nor comeli- 
ness ; and when we shall see him, there is no beauty that we 
should desire him." Isaiah liii. U. That is what Isaiah the 
prophet says. 

Ah ! doubtless, my sister, to me as to you, Jesus is the 
Son of God and himself God : he is a model of sanctity, 
of moral beauty, of magnanimity, of high-souled devution. 
Doubtless Jesus is worthy of all our worship; but observe 
that I here speak only of the material body which he assumed 
in Mary's womb, that he might live for a space among us in 



THE PORTRAIT OF MARY IN HEAVEN. 9 

his humiliation; and though prostrating myself before the 
God, I can still admit that his mortal covering had neither 
beauty nor splendor, nor, indeed, any thing to please the 
sight. 

If such was Jesus, we may, on the same grounds, and 
further, from the probable resemblance of mother and son, 
suppose that such also would Mary be. 

I placed myself before my canvas and seized my pencil, 
when a new idea struck me. It is for Mary as she is now, 
and not as she was in her childhood or her youth, that you 
have asked me, and you are right ; for it is not Mary at her 
marriage, but Mary after her entrance into heaven, who now 
intercedes for us. Here I had no longer any thing in the 
Holy Scripture to guide me. The Church, indeed, speaks of 
the Assumption of the Virgin ; but the word of God is silent 
upon it. What could I do ? As a good Catholic, submit to 
the Church. I admitted, without further hesitation, what 
that good mother teaches ; that is, that Mary, at the close of 
her earthly life, (according to our calculation, at sixty years 
of age,) was raised to heaven in body and soul, and placed 
beside her Son. This once accepted as a fact, how should I 
represent Mary arriving in paradise? Of course, with the 
features which she had on quitting the earth, since she did 
not die, but departed with the same body ; but was not this 
body, then, in any way modified ? Such is the question 
which I thought I could put to my guide — hitherto so sure — 
the word of God. 

I again went entirely through the New Testament, and 
here is what I found respecting my subject : — i( In the life to 
come/' said Jesus to the Sadducees, " those who are worthy 
of the resurrection shall neither marry nor be given in mar- 
riage, because they are like the angels." Thus Mary, as now 
in heaven, can neither marry nor be given in marriage : she 
is in a manner neither man nor woman. Jesus says, " She is 
like the angels." 

Now, how are angels to be represented ? or, at least, what 
is the essential difference which distinguishes these celestial 
creatures from human creatures ? On the one hand, we must 
believe that their forms are analogous to ours, because it is 
thus that they are often presented to the personages of the 
Old and New Testaments; but, on the other hand, we are 
10 



10 THE PORTRAIT OF MARY IN HEAVEN. 

told, in the sixth chapter of Isaiah, that in the presence of 
God " the angels vail their faces with their wings. " Whence 
I draw this conclusion, if not certain, at least probable, that 
our celestial body must differ in some respects from the pre- 
sent one ; and that to us, as well as to the angels, this admi- 
rable method of traversing space, and of ranging from sun to 
sun and from world to world, will be given, that we may 
accomplish the commands of our Grod. 

This is the reason why I have given wings to the Queen 
of heaven, who is no longer either man or woman ; and who 
entered into paradise, on the testimony of the Church, when 
she quitted the earth ; that is, at the age of sixty years. 

As to the drapery with which I have covered Mary, I was 
guided, not by our imaginary portraits, in which she is painted 
gracefully attired in light blue robes ; nor have I introduced 
into her garments those folds, here tightened to define the 
form, there let loose to hang tastefully ; but I have the rather 
conformed myself to the indications furnished by the Book 
of Revelation, where great multitudes of saints are seen 
enveloped in long white robes. 

And now, my sister, I have completed the vindication of 
my portrait. I hope that you will be pleased with it, for I 
have accomplished what I promised — a portrait of Mary, the 
most faithful of all that have ever been painted. 

I remain, devotedly and respectfully, your brother, 

Joseph de Saint-Pierre. 

P S. — I return you your Bible, that you may yourself 
verify the quotations which justify my work. 

A year passed away, and the abbess replied in the follow- 
ing letter, which closed the correspondence : — 

THE ABBESS TO THE PAINTER. 

Abbey of St. Mary, Feb. 1G, 1567. 
Dear Brother in our Lord and Saviour Jesus 
Christ : — With feelings of the purest and most vivid joy I 
address you. Without question you have rendered me the 
greatest of services : it is only just that I should endeavor to 
render as great a one to you in my turn. You believed you 
were sending me an inanimate portrait : you gave me a living 



THE PORTRAIT OF MARY IN HEAVEN. 11 

being. You thought to make me acquainted with a woman, 
our mediatrix with Christ : you have revealed to me God the 
Saviour. But this needs explanation. I will unfold the 
matter from the beginning. 

You will understand how, on the receipt of your packeL 
my first glance was at the picture. The sight confounded me 
I read your letter ; and, although with difficulty, I yielded tt 
your arguments. Afterwards I hung up the blessed portrait 
in my cell ; yes, Messed, as you will see. 

The more I contemplated these emaciated features, that 
figure enfeebled by age, the more was I disenchanted, and the 
more was my veneration for Mary weakened. I felt displeased 
with myself; "for, after all," I 'reflected, "she is still the 
very same being, and Mary is not the less powerful with God 
for being neither young nor beautiful." Vainly did I again 
and again school myself with these fine reasonings : I was 
conscious of a continual diminution and failure of affection for 
my patroness; and at length I came to perceive that what I 
had hitherto loved in the Virgin was her young, beautiful, 
girlish face, and her graceful and pure form; but not her 
moral character and intercession with Jesus Christ. Having 
once made this confession, I wished to know for myself this 
Mary whom I still respected, but whom I could no longer 
adore without difficulty. I opened the Bible which you had 
sent me. There, too, as before the picture, I felt my old ideas 
vanish one after the other; and the young, sweet, beautiful 
Virgin, the mediatrix between Jesus and men, and, moreover, 
the Queen of heaven, was changed into an humble servant of 
the Lord — happy because she had been received into favor, 
and who, far from being able to contribute to the salvation of 
others, herself required to be saved. The following is the 
passage which struck me most vividly : " My soul doth mag- 
nify the Lord, and my spirit hath rejoiced in God my Saviour." 
(See Luke i. 46, 47.) 

If God be her Saviour, I said to myself, then Mary was 
previously lost ; then she was not sinless ; but I continue to 
quote this portion of the Gospel : — 

" For he hath regarded the low estate of his handmaiden." 
You perceive Mary speaks of her low estate. She adds : 
" Henceforth all generations shall call me blessed. For He 
that is mighty hath done unto me great things." 



12 THE PORTRAIT OF MARY IN HEAVEN. 

Thus, then, if Mary were exalted, it was by God, and not 
by herself. But listen again to what the angel Gabriel says 
to her at verse thirty of the same chapter : " Mary, thou hast 
found grace before God." Now, you understand that to find 
grace, it is necessary to have sinned : you feel that it would, 
for instance, be ridiculous to say that God has bestowed grace 
or pardon on Jesus Christ — ridiculous, because he did not sin. 

Notwithstanding, do not think that my great joy comes 
from the discovery that Mary was only a favored and blessed 
woman, like every woman who is pardoned and saved. No ; 
but as soon as I had dethroned this idol from the sovereignty 
of my heart, the place was prepared for Him who should 
always have filled it. Yes, in seeking to know Mary from 
the Bible, I learned better to appreciate Jesus Christ, my only 
and well-beloved Saviour. And that which I find in him is 
not what I formerly sought in Mary — a carnal body, chiselled 
in this or that form ; but a soul, a heart, a love, which nothing 
here below can worthily express. Ah ! dear brother, when I 
saw the Son of God quit the heavens to come and live on the 
earth; when I followed him at every step instructing the 
people, curing the sick, visiting the poor, from whom he ex- 
pected nothing ; blaming the great at the risk of their dis- 
pleasure ; and, above all, when I heard the Saviour say to nie, 
" Come unto me, you who are heavy laden, and I will give 
you rest : he who believes in me shall not die : P give my life 
for the sheep ;" and lastly, when, after having thus listened to 
him, I beheld him ascend a cross to expiate my sins, and ex- 
claim in death, "Father, forgive them, for they know not 
what they do I" — O, then I felt my heart burn within nie, 
emotion overcame me, my eyes overflowed with tears, and I 
cried, " My Lord and my God, I am at length saved !" 

Since then, every thing has seemed new to me : those 
Christian truths which I already called mine, seem like beau- 
tiful images which have suddenly received life and motion. 
The gospel, Christ, heaven, God, became realities to me. I 
felt in my heart a divine guest explaining the word of God, 
rendering the good which had hitherto been so difficult to mo 
easy, and disgusting me with the evil formerly so sweet. I 
am as though I had been transported into a new world, where 
the ideas, the feelings, all things, are different from the world 
of yesterday; and this new world began to surround me or. 



THE PORTRAIT OF MARY IN HEAVEN. 13 

the day when I truly felt that I was fully and freely saved by 
Jesus Christ. 

And you, dear brother, will you not also finish the way 
which you have already half travelled ? You have restored 
the Virgin to her place — will you not also restore our Lord 
and Saviour Jesus Christ to his? Ah, believe me, true 
peace, true joy, is there alone. Take this Bible (not the 
same, for I keep that myself) : read it every day, praying for 
the Holy Spirit; and, be assured, you will soon find a better 
than Mary, the mediatrix : you will meet Jesus himself, our 
God and Saviour ! 



"NOT WITHOUT THE DUES." 

There was a poor Roman Catholic, of the name of Neale, 
in the county of Kilkenny, in Ireland, who had an opportu- 
nity of hearing a religious tract read, in which was set forth 
the blessedness of having the Bible, and the happiness de- 
rived from an acquaintance with the mercies and exceeding 
precious promises of Grod in Christ to sinners therein revealed. 
He was particularly struck by hearing the text quoted, " Ho ! 
every one that thirsteth, come ye to the waters," etc., (Isa. 
lv. 1,) and became most anxiously desirous of obtaining a 
Bible. Having heard that a clergyman in the neighborhood 
gave them to the poor, he went to him, and, with an expres- 
sion of much confusion and anxiety, begged one ; having ob- 
tained which, he went away with a delight in his countenance 
that was very remarkable. In about three months afterwards 
the clergyman met him, and. asked him whether he read the 
Bible, and what he found in it. He said that he read it con- 
stantly, and found much pleasure and comfort in reading it ; 
but he did not say that he discovered, through it, any par- 
ticular truth. The clergyman then spoke to him about the 
grace of Grod in Christ Jesus, which was to be discovered in 
every part of the Bible, for that Christ was the sum and sub- 
stance of it. The conversation was short, as it rained very 
hard at the time. About three months afterwards, the man 
came to the clergyman, and told him he desired to become 
a Protestant. The clergyman asked him what he meant 



14 THE PORTRAIT OF MARY IN HEAVEN. 

by becoming a Protestant: He said, to join a people whr 
worshipped God in heart, and knew the mercy of the Lord 
Jesus Christ He was then asked what he knew of the salva- 
tion of Christ. From his answers it appeared that he had 
been brought to a knowledge of the truth as it is in Jesus, 
andto a discovery of the fullness there is in him for the chief 
of" sinners. Getting more confidence, after some conversa- 
tion, he told the clergyman that he had for some time seen 
the errors of the Church of Kome, and determined to leave 
her communion; and wishing to let the priest know the 
reason why he did, he went to him to confession at Easter. 
When he had confessed, as the priest was about to give him 
absolution, he stopped him by saying he had only a shilling 
to give him : his fee was half a crown. The priest asked him 
what he meant by not having the fee, and spoke to him 
severely. The poor man answered, that he had a wife and 
six children ; and that he only earned tenpence a day, and 
could hardly support them on this small pittance ; and that 
he could not give him more. The priest said, that if he were 
to listen to such excuses, he should never be able to get his 
dues; and again spoke severely. The man then asked him 
if he would give him absolution. He said, "Not without the 
dues :" the man then replied, " Father, since the grace you 
have to give is only to be had for money, I must go and seek 
it where it is to be got l without money and without price;' " 
and then left him. The relation of this circumstance pro- 
duced a conversation on the text he quoted, and it was de- 
lightful to hear what clear and simple views he had obtained 
of the free grace of God to the chief of sinners, while his 
heart was overflowing with joy : this being the first conversa- 
tion he had ever held with any person who knew any thing 
of truth. He was wonderfully taught of God, through the 
reading of the Scriptures; and there were few passages in 
the prophets, declaring the freedom and fullness of grace, that 
he had not some knowledge of, although it was but six months 
from the time he obtained the Bible until he had the conver- 
sation with the priest. The man has since been increasing in 
the knowledge of God and his Christ, and is truly living to 
his glory. 



THE PORTRAIT OF MARY IN HEAVEN. 15 



FIRST COMMANDMENT. 

The gods that gave us not our birth, 
The gods that made not heaven and earth, 
Perish their names ! no gods are they — 
We cast them all in scorn away. 

But, Lord, idolaters are we, 
If we withhold our hearts from thee : 
Self and the world our idols are, 
If they our chief affections share. 

set up in our hearts thy throne, 
Destroy thy rivals — reign alone : 
Maker of heaven, and earth, and sea, 
We'll have no other gods but thee ! 



SECOND COMMANDMENT. 

Father, we approach thy throne 
In spirit and in truth alone ; 
For naught in heaven, or earth, or sea, 
Can represent thy majesty. 

How they insult a jealous God, 
How they provoke his vengeful rod, 
Who render worship, fear, or love 
To aught beside the Power above ! 

Lord, save us from this fearful sin, 
Which by a thousand forms creeps in : 
Thy word alone our guide shall be, 
And by its light we'll worship thee. 



PSALM CXV 

BY DR. WATTS. 

Not to our names, Thou only just and true, 

Not to our worthless names is glory due : 

Thy power and grace, thy truth and justice claim 

Immortal honors to thy sovereign name. 

Shine through the earth, from heaven thy blest abode, 

Nor let the heathen say, "And where's your God?" 



16 THE PORTRAIT OF MARY IN HEAVEN. 

Heaven is thy higher court : there stands thy throne , 
And through the lower worlds thy will is done : 
Earth is thy work: the heavens thy hand hath spread; 
But fools adore the gods their hands have made : 
The kneeling crowd, with looks devout, behold 
Their silver saviours and their saints of gold. 

Vain are those artful shapes of eyes and ears — 

The molten image neither sees nor hears : 

Their hands are helpless, nor their feet can move: 

They have no speech, nor thought, nor power, nor love ; 

Yet sottish mortals make their long complaints 

To their deaf idols and their moveless saints. 

The rich have statues well adorn'd with gold : 
The poor, content with gods of coarser mould, 
With tools of iron carve the senseless stock, 
Lopt from a tree, or broken from a rock: 
People and priest drive on the solemn trade, 
And trust the gods that saws and hammers made. 

Be heaven and earth amazed ! 'Tis hard to say 
"Which the more stupid — or their gods or they. 
Israel, trust the Lord : he hears and sees : 
He knows thy sorrows, and restores thy peace : 
His worship does a thousand comforts yield : 
He is thy help, and he thy heavenly shield. 

In God we trust: our impious foes in vain 
Attempt our ruin, and oppose his reign : 
Had they prevail'd, darkness had closed our days, 
And death and silence had forbid his praise : 
But we are saved, and live : let songs arise, 
And Zion bless the God who built the skies. 



Nashville, Tenn. : Published by E. Stevenson & F. A. Owen, for the M. E. Church, South. 



No. 33. 



THE VIKGIN AND THE SAINTS. 



FROM THE FRENCH OF N. ROUSSEL. 



In a retired village of France, a good old cure" lived peace- 
ably, after having passed his youth in the storms of the Revo- 
lution of '89. He had become a priest by degrees, without 
the usual studies, and had been placed at the head of a 
church. Settled in this cure toward the beginning of the 
empire, he struggled for more than thirty years to improve 
the manners of his parish, but without effect. Instead of 
coming to mass, the men went to the public-house ; and, far 
from coming to confess, the women ran eagerly to the dance. 
Hoping that a younger and better-instructed priest would 
have more success, the old cure thought of taking his nephew 
as curate. 

On the arrival of the young man, the old man ingenuously 
told him the sad state of his flock. 

" How do you try/' said his nephew, " to give them a 
taste for religion ?" 

11 1 always speak to them of the Holy Grod." 

"What besides ?" 

" Sometimes of the saints." 

"An opposite plan must be adopted." 

" But God is better than saints !" 

" This is what I mean : — We have observed that, in order 
to interest men, we must chiefly discourse of their equals, 
with whom they like to compare themselves/' 

" But if they want a model, can they not find it in Grod V 

"Not so, uncle. Grod, too great, too holy, frightens sin- 
ners : that is why they keep so far away. Besides, how 
would you represent to them an invisible, impalpable Grod, 
10* 



2 THE VIRGIN AND THE SAINTS. 

while the image of a saint can be placed before their eyes, 
in their hands ? By thus giving them sensible things, we 
attach them to the Church — I should say to religion. But, 
indeed, uncle, I hope you sometimes speak to them of the 
very holy Virgin ?" 

" Rarely." 

" So much the worse." 

" However, God is always God : while the Virgin (betweeD 
ourselves) is only a most blessed woman." 

" That is of no consequence — the Virgin is a woman, and 
that is what gives strength to my argument. Frequently 
place Mary before the eyes of your parishioners, and you 
will be surprised with the happy results you will obtain. The 
mother of the family will see in Mary her own image ; for, 
like her, Mary has been a mother. The young girl will see 
her protectress ; for, like her, Mary is a virgin. The child 
will see in her its mother, the man his wife, or her who 
should become so ', and thus each will be taken on his weak 
side. In one word, men have senses — it is by them we must 
lay hold upon them. Have a well-dressed Madonna — give 
her the first place in your church, in your sermons, in your 
books ; and be sure you will obtain for the Virgin, and con- 
sequently for the Church, an emanation of the mild influ- 
ence which is exercised everywhere by the sex to which she 
belongs." 

" Do you believe it ?" 

" 1 am sure of it." 

" Well, listen : since you have confidence in your system, 
try it upon my church — while I, too old to bend to your 
ideas, shall retire into my closet, to finish my days in the 
midst of peaceable studies, and watch your happy success." 

The young man accepted the offer, and commenced his 
work. His first care was to visit a turner in the village. 

" Good man," said he on entering, " can you make any 
thing besides stoppers and snuff-boxes ?" 

"Why, Sir, I will make you a clock, if you wish. For 
merly " 

" Let time alone, my friend. I do not want a clock, but a 
saint." 



"A saint ? Two, if you wish. Once " 

"Again — leave your histories of former times." 



THE VIRGIN AND THE SAINTS, 3 

"Be it so : I come to the present. Of what size shall 
your saint be ?" 

" Of three feet." 

"Wait, I am going to take my measures/ ' (^writing.) 
Three feet in height. Well, now, of what wood ?" 

"Of oak." 

( Writing again.') " Of oak. I understand. Do you wish 
it stout or thin ?" 

" Thin, thin, so that it may be known to be young. Make 
the hands joined, the countenance sad — I would say the head 
slightly bowed ?" 

" Bowed — there it is." 

"As for the rest, you have carte-blanche. However, make 
it kneeling." 

" Kneeling. When do you want it ?" 

"As soon as possible." 

" You shall have it in a fortnight." 

"What, a fortnight to make a saint !" 

" See, I have three dozen ladles to make, which must be 
done first. Each in his turn." 

" That is right. At all events, do not fail. Here are six 
francs in advance. Good day." 

" Good day." 

And the curate set out for the next town. He came to 
the house of one of those Italians who cry in our streets 
images to sell. He asked him for a holy Virgin, of large 
size. The merchant took him into his back shop, and showed 
him, upon its shelves, displayed side by side, a Yenus, the 
Three Graces, Voltaire, Kousseau, and a Madonna holding a 
child in her arms. The latter was sufficiently good for a 
figure in plaster ; at the same time the curate was not con- 
tent with it, and confined his purchases to two or three small 
colored saints, destined for the niches of his chapels, and 
went out. He was then much puzzled how to obtain his 
Virgin, when he perceived, at the door of a hair-dresser, a 
graceful revolving wax-doll : the hair beautiful, well dressed, 
altogether seducing. He enters, asks the address of the 
artist, runs to find him on his sixth story, and gives him his 
commission. 

"Make her," said he, "with blue eyes, black and very long 



4 THE VIRGIN AND THE SAINTS. 

eyelashes, a small mouth, a large forehead, clear and open 
I suppose that is easy to you ?" 

"Ah! very easy: to us artists beauty costs nothing. Da 
you wish it fair or brown ?" 

" Brown : that suffers less from dirt." 

"Young or old?" 

" Young, certainly. How much will it cost me ?" 

" That is according to circumstances. There are all prices 
of them. It depends on the whiteness of the wax, or the 
fineness of the colors : indeed, it is according to the beauty 
of the figure. You understand that it must take much more 
time to model with the fingers and tools a delicate Virgin for 
your churches, than these wax-dolls for cabinets, which they 
show in the fairs. I have employed more than a month in 
making the saint for our cathedral. I have never finished — 
a touch with the finger here, a touch there ; and when it was 
finished, do you know the misfortune I had?" 

"What?" 

" My monkey came and put its nails into the eyes of my 
saint." 

"Ah!" 

"It is as I say. But do not fear — I will take care of 
^ours." 

" Yes : however, I do not wish to pay too dear." 

"Well, I will propose a plan to you." 

" Let us see." 

" Here is a head of a hair-dresser that I will arrange in 
your way." 

"And what will it cost me ?" 

"One hundred francs." 

" How much will one quite new cost ?" 

" One hundred and fifty." 

" I take it for one hundred francs. Here is my address : 
send it as soon as possible." 

The curate, returning to his village, selected the richest 
devotee, and wrote to her the following letter : — 

" Good news, my sister : in three weeks we shall inaugu- 
rate the very holy image of the most blessed Virgin Wary. 
You know that it is of importance she should be worthily 
dressed. It is upon you I devolve this charge. I determine 



THE VIRGIN AND THE SAINTS, 5 

nothing, referring it to your taste and to your devotion, so 
well known in all that relates to the good of the Church. 
They say, however, that tulle looks better than muslin, and 
that lace is better than silk blond. A satin robe is also in 
good taste, above all when it is relieved by some small dia- 
monds. But, I repeat, your taste as a young woman will 
guide you much better than my counsels ; and I conclude 
by expressing the wish that you may receive in heaven a 
reward proportioned to your zeal, which is as pure as it is 
generous. " 

The young lady of about fifty years, married at twenty- 
five, remembered that she had at the bottom of a chest some 
remnants of her wedding-dress : she went to seek them. 
Unhappily, it was all faded, rumpled ; but the devotee, not 
less economical than generous, repaired the lace, washed the 
dress, ironed the neck-handkerchief, mended some stitches in 
the worn silk-stockings, which she re-cut to the measure, and 
finally made a sufficiently elegant toilet for the holy doll. It 
only remained to dress the patron saint. This was very easy. 
The curate entrusted it to a servant, who, from an old silk 
apron, made him a new cloak ; and from a pair of gloves, a 
pair of shoes. 

A fortnight later, after the saint-makers, Jeannette, the 
young lady, the artist, and the turner, had fulfilled their 
respective commissions, the saint of wood and the virgin of 
wax appeared face to face in the choir of the church, to the 
great satisfaction of all the village assembled to see them — 
the bishop himself returned to officiate on the day of their 
inauguration. After mass, the two statues were promenaded 
through the streets, in the midst of the crowd, praised by 
the children of the choir, saluted by the cure, blessed by the 
bishop, and adored — I ought to say venerated — by the assem- 
bly. It was no longer wood, nor wax, nor stockings, nor 
apron : the whole was transformed into two holy images of 
the Virgin Mary, and of the patron of the place. After that, 
the curate preached little besides the virtues of his saint and 
the merits of his Virgin. 

At this time, also, every thing in the parish assumed a new 
appearance. Men and women became diligent in the ser- 
vices, children and old men came to kneel before the saint, 
young girls and young people before the Madonna. There 



6 THE VIRGIN AND THE SAINTS. 

Were in honor of them masses without end, songs without 
number, offerings without measure. All tended to the per- 
fection of the Church : only in going from mass the men 
continued to go to the public-house, and after confession the 
women still went to the dance. 

This brings us again to the good cur6, who, retired in his 
study, and occupied in meditating on a Bible recently dis- 
covered under the dust of his library, left his nephew to 
govern his church in complete liberty. Only from time to 
time the old priest went out of his retreat to pay a friendly 
visit to his parishioners. As his nephew had told him by 
what hand the wooden saint was made, the cure called one 
day on the skilful turner. 

" I compliment you/' said he, " on your masterpiece." 

"What masterpiece?" 

"Ah ! your saint." 

" Pooh ! it is no trouble : I have made many others." 

"You?" 

"Yes." 

"When?" 

" For twenty years." 

"Where?" 

"In India." 

"What! have you been in India?" 

" Yes, as sure as I am here. I have made, as a sailor, the 
voyage to Hindoostan. It was there that I saw these idols, 
small and large, white and black, pretty and ugly." 

"Indeed!" 

"And to make your saint I had only to use my old mea- 
sure. At that time I worked with an Italian statuary, who, 
ruined by too much competition at Rome, thought of trans- 
porting his industry to the Pagans." 

" And you say that there it is the same as here." 

"Absolutely the same thing: wooden idols, dressed in the 
fashion of the country, which they praise, to which they pray, 
and which they renew when they grow old, or are spoiled. 
And I offer you my services, if your saint ever needs such repair." 

The cure" went out without replying : a sorrowful thought 
had entered his mind. 

A week later, the old man, walking in his fields, met an 
agriculturist. 



THE VIRGIN AND THE SAINTS. 



SO." 



" How are you ?" said he to the peasant. 

" Pretty well, except a cold and weakness ; but I am always 



" Then you have not prayed to the Virgin ?" 

" Yes, much : I have burnt three tapers for that purpose." 

"And the harvests this year?" 

"A little worse than last year." 

" Have you wanted rain ?" 

"Not at all." 

"Heat?" 

" Not much." 

"And doubtless you prayed to your patron saint to obtain 
both?" 

"Yes." 

" Then he heard you favorably." 

" Without doubt. Only he gave us rain when we asked 
for fine weather, and fine weather when we asked rain." 

" However, my nephew says that after a drought of two 
months he made a procession, and then rain came." 

" Yes ; but I think the rain came after the drought, rather 
than after the procession." 

"And how is it with your household ?" 

"I lost six sheep in the last epidemic." 

" That is not what I ask. I speak of your family." 

" My daughter is always in bed." 

" She does not pray, then, to Mary?" 

" Quite the reverse : so she does not become worse." 

Pursued by doubts that his reading increased, the old cure" 
came to the parsonage to speak to his nephew. He only 
found the old servant. 

" Jeannette," said he. 

" Sir 1" 

"Where is my nephew?" 

"At the confessional. For some time he has been scarcely 
able to get through his numerous duties : his saint and his 
Virgin have changed all in the parish." 

" Is it for the better ?" 

" That is as you think." 

"What would you say?" 

"I should say that they confess oftener, pay more for 
masses, burn more tapers, recite more prayers, sing more 



8 THE VIRGIN AND THE SAINTS. 

songs, carry more medals ; but as for the rest, all is the same 
as before." 

"What do you call the rest?" 

" Drunkenness, evil-speaking, debauchery, lying, cunning, 
fraud" 

" Enough, enough : I understand." 

" It is worse now than in our time. During six months, 
three new public-houses have been opened." 

" Enough." 

" Ten country balls held." 

" Enough." 

" Twenty pieces of meat stolen." 

" Enough." 

" Fifteen lawsuits instituted, twelve of which were lost by 
the people of our village." 

" Enough, I tell you. Do you not know that it is not the 
fault of the saint nor of the Virgin ?" 

" Undoubtedly; but it is not much to their honor." 

Daily more afflicted, the good cure returned to his closet 
and resumed his studies, scarcely ever going out. His 
nephew, astonished with so complete a seclusion, sometimes 
Went to look through the hole of the lock, and constantly 
found his uncle engaged in reading or prayer. When he 
asked him what study had occupied him in the day, the cure" 
always returned a tardy reply, till one day he said to him, 
" To-morrow !" 

The next day came : the old man took the curate to search 
for a volume in his closet, before going down with him into 
the garden. The young priest, impatient to see the mystery 
cleared up, obeyed promptly, and soon both were seated side 
by side on a turf-bank. 

" My son," said the old man, " first of all let us pray to 
God" — and his venerable head was bent upon his hand. 
After some moments of mental prayer, he again spoke : 
" My friend, if I have so long delayed replying to your ques- 
tions upon my new studies, it has been that I desired to be 
able to satisfy you completely. To-day, I am about to tell 
you that my study — too late, alas! — is that of the Holy 
Scriptures." 

" Of the Bible ?" 

Yes : of the Word of God." 



a 



THE VIRGIN AND THE SAINTS. 9 

" And why have you begun that study ?" 

" Because of your saint and Virgin : let us rather say, poor 
friend, because of your idols." 

" My idols ! do you say ? Our patron saint and the Virgin 
Mary, are they idols ? But" 

" My friend, I know all that can be said to clear our Church 
from the accusation of idolatry : it is reduced to this : — We 
place religious images before us, not to render them homage, 
but to raise our thoughts more easily to the beings whom they 
represent. As for these holy persons themselves, we do not 
worship them — we merely honor them." 

" That is true, uncle : all is reduced to those two points, 
and I shall be curious to know what you can say to the first. 
Let us see. Is it not allowable to kneel before an image, 
provided the honor is not addressed to it, but to the object 
represented ?" 

" No \ for when the Israelites made a golden calf, it was 
not to honor the molten metal which they had taken from 
the ears of their women, but rather, as says the Bible, to 
honor the true God who had brought them out of Egypt; 
and the feast which they celebrated around the idol was not 
in honor of the calf, but rather in honor of the Almighty. 
However, notwithstanding all that, you know, Moses broke 
the idol, and cast the dust of it into the waters of the river. 
Another example — the Brazen Serpent, upon which a look 
cast with faith had formerly obtained the cure of the Israel- 
ites. This serpent, preserved for many generations, received 
at last the offering of incense from the Jews, who doubtless 
thought thus to honor God, who had caused it to be raised 
in the desert : however, Hezekiah, who, according to the 
Bible, did what was pleasing to the Almighty, broke this 
serpent, to put a stop to the burning of incense to it. From 
the idol let us pass to its object. You say we do not wor- 
ship the saints, we only honor them : you will agree, at least, 
that it is a religious honor ?" 
" True." 

"Well, this honor, whatever it is, is forbidden in the Word 
of God. Listen again. Cornelius sent for St. Peter : on the 
arrival of the apostle, he wished to prostrate himself before 
him : certainly it was not to worship him ; for Cornelius, ' a 
man fearing God/ knew well that the Almighty alone must 



10 THE VIRGIN AND THE SAINTS. 

be worshipped : he, then, only wished to render to him in« 
ferior homage. However, what did Peter do ? When he saw 
him bend the knee, he hastily stayed him, and said, l Stand 
up, I myself also am a man/ " 

" Yes, uncle ; but Peter, who refused that honor when he 
was only a man on earth, would not refuse it now that he is 
blessed in heaven." 

" Dear nephew, the Bible will answer you. In the Apoc- 
alypse, the Apostle John, after having been conducted in 
vision by an angel, wished to prostrate himself before that 
celestial being. Certainly St. John, the great apostle, the 
inspired evangelist, the friend of the Saviour, the revealer of 
the future — St. John well knew that God alone must be 
worshipped. In casting himself on his knees before the angel, 
his intention was also only to render to him inferior homage. 
But what said the angel to him ? ' See thou do it not. I 
am thy fellow-servant/ Here, then, are the Apostle Peter 
on earth and an angel in heaven, both refusing a simple 
honor like what you give to the Virgin and the saints." 

" But in this Bible that you so constantly quote to me, there 
is neither a question of the Virgin nor of angels." 

"Well, there is the question of the Virgin ; but it is to say 
that she was only upon earth a creature subject to sin." 

" Subject to sin ?" 

" Yes, since it is said that God gave her grace : we only 
give grace to the guilty." 

" But, uncle, it is said, on the contrary, that she was full 
of grace." 

" Dear friend, I see clearly you only know the Holy Scrip- 
ture by the faulty translations of your Church. Yes, our 
translators have put in French, l full of grace/ to make it be 
believed, from this equivocal expression, that Mary can dis- 
tribute favors to men ; but the truth is, that in the Greek 
text, as in all faithful translations, the angel said to Mary, 
' Thou hast found favor :' that ia to say, been favored, par- 
doned ; and this is why she is said to be blessed. Besides, 
after this declaration, so far from Mary having favors to dis- 
tribute to others, she seems afterward to need more for her- 
self, since Jesus reprimands her in these terms: 'Woman, 
what have I to do with thee V And in another place, when 
they came to tell the Saviour that Mary his mother sought 



THE VIRGIN AND THE SAINTS. 11 

him, Jesus, without paying any attention to her, stretched 
out his hand toward his disciples, and said, ' Behold my 
mother and my brethren/ Thus, according to the testimony 
of Jesus himself, the Virgin Mary, admitted to favor and 
blessing, is placed in the rank of other creatures pardoned 
and saved." 

" But the angels, uncle : the Bible does not speak of 
them ?" 

" Yes, it speaks even of the worship addressed to them." 

"Ah ! you see ; and what does it say of it ?" 

" It condemns it. Listen to the epistle of St. Paul to the 
Colossians, chap. ii. 18 :— ' Let no man beguile you of your 
reward in a voluntary humility and worshipping of angels, 
intruding into those things which he hath not seen/ " 

" That is strange." 

"What remains to be said on the whole of the subject, 
will appear to you still more strange. You know, as well 
as I, that the commandments of God, given to Moses upon 
Sinai, with the sound of thunder and the brilliancy of light- 
ning, are perhaps the most solemn part of the word of God. 
Now, see the second of these commandments, which dis- 
tinctly speaks of idols and images : — ' Thou shalt not make 
unto thee any graven image, or any likeness of any thing 
that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or 
that is in the water under the earth : thou shalt not bow 
down thyself to them, nor serve them, for' " 

" But you are mistaken, uncle : the second commandment 
is this, ' Thou shalt not take the name of the Lord thy God 
in vain. 

" My son, what you have just said is the most shameful 
perversion of the Roman Church." 

"How?" 

" Yes, the commandment which you quote, and which the 
Church has placed second, in order to dispose of what I have 
quoted, is really the third." 

" But by this calculation one would be wanting, while I 
find ten in all our Catechisms." 

" Yes : because, after taking away the second, the Church, 
to preserve the number so well known as the ten command- 
ments, has made two from the last " 

"What do you say, uncle?" 



12 THE VIRGIN AND THE SAINTS. 

" This is not all. As the first imposture has constrained 
the Church to commit a second, that has led to a third, the 
third to a fourth, and all to cover the first lie/' 

" But, uncle, it is little to affirm it : it must be proved." 
" Listen to me, then. I am about to disclose to you this 
chain of sacrilege and iniquity. The second commandment, 
which I have read to you, was given by God entirely to pro- 
hibit idols and images. But the Church of Rome, seeing 
the party that would be arrayed against it by this express 
commandment, has completely suppressed it in these French 
verses, which they call the commandments of God, and which 
begin thus : ' One only God shalt thou adore,' etc. "When 
our Catechisms quote the commandments in prose, they take 
care to dissemble the second by joining it to the first, and 
thus from two they make only one. Lie the first. But, as 
you have well observed, by thus rasing the third command- 
ment, one place is left empty. Then what has the Romish 
Church done ? She has divided into two the commandment 
on covetousness, to preserve the number ten, and to deceive 
lookers-on. Imposture the second. This is not all. As, by 
dividing the tenth commandment, two were found forbidding 
the same fault, it was necessary to lessen their resemblance. 
To do this, the Church in her Catechisms has reversed the 
order of the phrases. In his holy law, God had said, 'Thou, 
shalt not covet thy neighbor's house, nor his wife, nor his 
servant, nor his ox,' etc. : that is to say, after having named 
the house, it enumerates all the objects which it includes — 
the wife as well as the maid-servant : the servant as well as 
the other objects; and all signifies that there is nothing, 
absolutely nothing, we may covet. Here, then, the Church, 
using her accustomed skill, has extracted from the midst of 
these phrases all that concerns the wife, has changed its 
place, and made a commandment of that by itself which for- 
bids to covet the neighbor's wife. Falsehood the third. We 
are not at the end. In thus introducing to a new place a 
commandment against the desire of adultery, the Church is 
found to have made another command like the seventh, 
which already condemns the same crime. Here is another 
st.r;it;igcni : the Church alters the seventh commandment, 
and transforms the prohibition of adultery into a prohibition 
of impurity. This alteration is very evident : because, when 



THE VIRGIN AND THE SAINTS. 13 

Jesus in the Gospel quotes this seventh commandment, he 
does not say, in the terms of the Church, Thou shalt not 
commit impurity, but ' Thou shalt not commit adultery/ I 
accept, then, simply, the translation of Jesus Christ himself, 
and I say that if the Church gives a different sense to the 
passage, it is that she is deceived, or rather that she deceives 
us ; for she is interested in it, to avoid the double employ- 
ment of the seventh and ninth commandments. Fourth, 
but not last, falsehood. In the second commandment, placed 
at the end of the first, speaking of images, it is said, ' Thou 
shalt not bow down to them ; ; but in the place of the words 
bow down, the Catholic Catechisms use worship, because the 
expression given by God too clearly condemns the kneeling 
before images, which the Church authorizes. Here are five 
alterations rendered necessary to conceal one. A just pun- 
ishment for the guilty man who, to conceal his crime, com- 
mits others which make his guilt more evident to the 
observing eye, and increase it in the sight of God. 
Remark that the command of God is formal, radical, 
absolute. It is impossible to say more than he has said. 
God seems to have foreseen the subtilties of men, and to 
have wished to prevent them. His prohibition bears upon 
three points : — - 

" 1st. Not to make any kind of image. 

"2d. Of any object. 

" 3d. Not to render to it any worship." 

" I confess, uncle, your proofs have convinced my mind, 
but they sadden my heart. It was so sweet to me to have 
recourse to the intercession of the Virgin and the saints, that, 
if I must lose them, it seems to me that I shall find myself 
separated from God by an abyss, for I shall no longer have an 
intercessor." 

"What do you say? — no longer an intercessor! And is 
not Jesus Christ there ? Why, then, did he come upon earth ? 
why did he clothe himself with our nature ? why did he 
Suffer, even to death, if it was not to fill up the abyss of 
which you speak — if it was not to take our hand to put it in 
the hand of God, and to become thus our Mediator, our 
means of reconciliation ? More than that, it is the Bible 
itself which teaches us this : it says, ' There is one God, and 
one Mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus.' 



14 THE VIRGIN AND THE SAINTS. 

Is not this passage remarkable ? Does it not seem to W« 

gin and of the saints and to conduct the sinner, who dares 
not approach his Judge, toward his Advocate, his Brother 
his Intercessor-toward Jesus Christ ? Ah ! dear friend £ 
us not pretend to be wiser than God: he has given us an 
only Intercessor : let us not seek another. This would be to 
say that Jesus Christ is not sufficient/' 

" Yes, uncle, he is sufficient between the saints and God • 
and it is to obtain his intercession that we pray to the blessed 
ones. 

"Another subtilty of the Church, my son. Here is what 
the Bible says, neither more nor less :— < There is one Medi- 
ator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus.' This 
passage presents a chain of three links: God is the first; 
man the last; and Jesus Christ, the middle, unites them. 
If, then, you place angels, saints, and the Virgin between 
man and Jesus Christ, you lengthen this chain — you change 
it, you pervert it : you take from us the privilege of address- 
ing ourselves directly to our Saviour. You know a popular 
proverb says, f tt is much better to have to do with God 
than with the saints/ Here the people are perfectly right, 
and the Bible confirms it, hy saying that between us and 
God there is only one Mediator, Jesus Christ. If it was 
otherwise, it would be said so, and we should read in this 
passage, There is only one Mediator between God and the 
saints, to wit, Jesus Christ; but there are o.thers between 
Jesus Christ and men, to wit, all the saints. Now, if this 
is not said in the divine word, it declares the contrary, and 
affirms that the space between God and men is overcome by 
a single mediator, that is, Jesus Christ." 

" However," 

" Dear friend, if you have so much difficulty in yielding 
to evidence, it is that prejudices cherished for many years 
are not easily effaced. I only know one power capable of 
purifying our soul : it is the influence of the Holy Spirit. 
And doubtless you will do well to read again this Bible ; but 
let it be with prayer to God to enlighten you with his Spirit. 
Thereby you will lose the false support of saints and the 
Virgin; but you will find the intercession, powerful, direct 
and single, of your Saviour— of Jesus Christ." 



THE VIRGIN AND THE SAINTS. 15 

INVOCATION OF SAINTS. 

Professor Browne, in his late work on the Thirty-nine 
Articles, has the following on this subject : — 

" For this practice no early authority can be pleaded ; but 
against it the strongest testimony of the primitive Christians 
exists. They assert continually that we should worship none 
but God. # Thus Justin Martyr : ' It becomes Christians to 
worship God only/ Tertullian : ' For the safety of the em- 
peror we invoke God, eternal, true and living God. 
Nor can I pray to any other than to Him, from whom I am 
sure that I may obtain, because He alone can give it/ Ori* 
gen : ' To worship any one besides the Father, the Son, and 
the Holy Ghost, is the sin of impiety/ Lactantius complains 
of the extreme blindness of men (i. e. heathens) who could 
worship dead men. And Athanasius argues from St. Paul's 
language, (1 Thess. iii. 11,) that the Son must be God, and 
not an angel or any other creature, since He is invoked in 
conjunction with His Father. 

" In the circular Epistle of the Church of Smyrna, narrat- 
ing the martyrdom of St. Polycarp, which took place about 
A. D. 147, it is said that the Jews prevented the giving of the 
body to the Christians for burial, ' lest, forsaking Him who 
was crucified, they should begin to worship this Polycarp / 
'not considering/ writes the Church of Smyrna, 'that neither 
is it possible for us to forsake Christ, who suffered for the 
salvation of all who are saved in the whole world, the spotless 
One for sinners, nor to worship any other/ 

" No doubt, the early Christians, believing in ' the com- 
munion of saints/ had a lively conviction that saints departed 
were still fellow-worshippers with the Church militant, and 
thought that those in Paradise still prayed for those on earth. 
But it does not therefore follow, that they considered that 
those who joined with us in prayer ought to be themselves 
addressed in prayer. On the contrary, we have express evi- 
dence that those who believed the saints at rest to pray for 
the saints in trial, believed that they did so without being 
invoked. So Origen, 'When men, purposing to themselves 
things which are excellent, pray to God, thousands of the 
sacred powers join with them in prayer, though not them- 



16 THE VIRGIN AND THE SAINTS. 

selves called on or invoked.' Nay, he is here specially argu- 
ing against Celsus, who would have had men invoke others 
of inferior power, after the God who is over all ; and he con- 
tends that, as the shadow follows the body, so, if we can move 
God by our prayers, we shall be sure to have all the angels 
and souls of the righteous on our side, and that, therefore, 
we must endeavor to please God alone. In the same book, 
he repeatedly denies that it is permitted us to worship angels, 
who are ministering spirits, our duty being to worship God 
alone. And whereas Celsus had said that angels (duifioveg) 
belonged to God, and should be reverenced, Origen says, 
* Far from us be the counsels of Celsus, that we should wor- 
ship them. We must pray to God alone, who is over all, and 
to the only-begotten Son, the first-born of every creature, and 
from Him must ask, that, when our prayers have reached Him, 
He, as High Priest, would offer them to His God and our 
God, to His Father, and the Father of all who live according 
to His word/ 

" St. Athanasius observes that St. Peter forbade Cornelius 
to worship him, (Acts x. 26,) and the angel forbade St. John, 
when he would have worshipped him. (Rev. xxii. 9.) l Where- 
fore/ he adds, < it belongs to God only to be worshipped ; and 
of this the angels are not ignorant, who, though they excel in 
glory, are yet all of them creatures, and are not in the num- 
ber of those to be adored, but of those who adore the Lord.' 

" In like manner, the Council of Laodicea, held, probably, 
about A. D. 364, forbids Christians to attend conventicles where 
angels were invoked, and pronounces anathema on all such as 
were guilty of this secret idolatry, inasmuch as they might be 
esteemed to have left the Lord Jesus, and given themselves 
to idolatry. Theodoret tells us, that the reason why this canon 
was passed at Laodicea was, because in Phrygia and Pisidia 
men had learned to pray to angels; and even to his own dav, 
he says, there were oratories of St. Michael among them." 

Nashville, Tenn. : Published by E. Stevenson & F. A. Owen, for the M. E. Church, South. 



No. 34. 



cc 



THE MOST HOLY BAMBINO. 



>> 




The religion of Roman Catholics is of course to be seen in 
its perfection in Rome, the city of the pope, where all is 
under his immediate direction and control ; and there, alas ' 
it is but too evident that their idols are numerous, and their 
idolatry of the grossest kind. 

A very favorite idol, expecially with the common people, 
11 



2 "the most holy bambino/' 

is an image which is designated by them as "the most 
holy Bambino." The word bambino is simply the Italian 
for " child," and is applied to this particular image of the 
holy child Jesus, about which they tell very strange tales. 
It is a small doll made of wood, about two feet in length; 
not unlike, except in its dress, the dolls made for the amuse- 
ment of children. On its head is a royal crown of gold, 
gemmed with rubies, emeralds, and diamonds. From its 
neck to its feet it is wrapped in swaddling clothes. The two 
little feet are seen projecting beneath; so that the face and 
feet of the image are alone visible.* The clothes are covered 
with jewels — rubies, emeralds, and brilliant diamonds — so 
that the Bambino is a blaze of splendor, worth several thou- 
sand dollars. It is said, and believed, to be distinguished 
above all other images of the same kind by its miraculous 
origin, miraculous history, and miraculous healings, and by 
the extent and fervor of the worship which is paid to it at 
Borne. It is exceedingly popular with the lower classes ; and 
the ancient cry of " Great is Diana of the Ephesians" was not 
more applicable in Ephesus than would be that of " Great is 
the Bambino of Ara CoBli/'f in Borne. From an account 
printed in that city, we glean the following information re- 
specting it. 

The little image of the child Jesus, of which we speak, was 
carved in Jerusalem by a devout monk ; and he formed it of 
the wood of the olive near the Mount of Olives. Whilst he 
wrought at the making of this little image, various marvellous 
things came to pass. Being in want of colors for painting 
and perfecting the figure, he betook himself to prayers, fast- 
ings, and other mortifications, and thus obtained Divine 
assistance. He then fell asleep, and when he awoke, lo ! a 
wonderful thing ! The image was by a prodigy become the 
color of flesh. On which he bowed down before it in humble 
adoration, and then set off with his treasure to Borne. The 
vessel in which he sailed was wrecked, but the image did not 

* The engraving on this tract is copied from a picture entitled, 
<The true effigy of the miraculous Bambino of Ara Coeli, dedicated 
to the piety and veneration of the devout of the said church." The 
picture was bought in Rome by an English lady. 

j- The name of the church and convent where it is kept, signifying 
the altar of heaven. 



"the most holy bambino." 8 

sink with the ship, but, by a miracle, was transported to Leg- 
horn. The news of this was soon spread abroad, and devout 
people sought it out, and speedily brought it to Rome. On 
its face being first exposed, the people wept in tenderness, 
prayed with fervor, ardently sought grace from it, and all 
securely obtained it. 

It is stated that on one occasion a devout noble lady, from 
her great devotion, took away this little image, and brought 
it to her house ; but after some days it miraculously returned 
to the Ara Coeli, ringing all the bells of the church and con- 
vent without any person touching them. All the monks ran 
together at this prodigy ; and, to their highest astonishment 
and wonder, they beheld the image of the holy Bambino upon 
the altar. It is on account of these wonderful things that it 
is worshipped by the Roman citizens, and enriched with such 
precious jewels.* 

Such are the principal particulars published by the author- 
ities respecting this image; and an implicit belief in the 
Bambino of Ara Coeli is, next to a belief in the virgin Mary, 
the most prominent article of faith in the creed of a Roman 
of the lower class. They almost universally believe that its 
presence in the chamber of sickness is of the greatest benefit. 
If any person is so extremely ill that recovery would seem 
doubtful, the presence of the Bambino they think will settle 
the question ; for it is believed that recovery or death can 
always be determined according as the face of the patient 
becomes pale or flushed on its introduction. Such notions of 
course lead the friends of the sick to send for the Bambino. 
The monks, however, will not permit its presence unless at a 
considerable cost; and thus many a family is impoverished 
by the money they give, and the convent enriched by the 
money it receives. 

But strange as all this may seem, it is not near so strange 
aa the sight of the Bambino when going to visit its patients. 
It is a common saying, among the people of Rome, that u the 
little doctor," as some of the more profane are pleased to term 
it, receives more and better fees from the sick than all the 
medical men put together. It is certain, at least, that it is 
brought to visit its patients in grander style; for a state 

* See the Rev. Hobart Seymour's Pilgrimage to Rome. Seeley. 



4 "the most holy bambino." 

coach is kept for it — a coach quite as fine, in its way, as those 
of the cardinals or pope — a coach which seems a meagre imi- 
tation of some worn-out state coach of a lord mayor of London. 
In this coach the Bambino is placed, accompanied by some 
priests in full dress; and onward they move, stately and slow, 
as a rapid movement is thought inconsistent with the dignity 
of the image ; and then, as it passes, every head is uncovered, 
and every knee is bent, in the streets through which it moves. 
The pope may pass, and be saluted as he passes : the image 
of the virgin Mary may pass, and many a head is bared before 
it : the host* may pass, and some may kneel, and some may 
salute ; but if the Bambino passes, every head is uncovered, 
and all the lower classes, let the streets be ever so wet and 
dirty, are prostrated in worship before it. 

The great festival of this little image is celebrated annually 
in the church of Ara Coeli, beginning at Christmas and end- 
ing at the Epiphany. 

An English clergyman,"]" who was present on several occa- 
sions, a few years ago, has given the following description of 
what he witnessed : 

" My first visit to this celebrated image was on the 26th of 
December. On our arrival, we found considerable difficulty 
in entering the church, so great was the crowd. The 
approaches and entrances were besieged by verniers of pic- 
tures of ' The most holy Bambino,' of every size and in every 
form, in sheets and in frames, some in the brightest colors, 
and others glittering in tinsel, to rival the brilliant gems they 
were designed to represent. It was surprising to see the 
number of these that were purchased by the people, as they 
arrived or departed. Having at length obtained an entrance, 
though with some difficulty, through the crowd of people who 
filled the church — and who seemed collected there, not to 
worship God, but, like ourselves, to see the sight — we were 
shown by an attendant to a spot within the rails of a side 
chapel : where, free from pressure, we could examine the 
scene at our ease. 

" It was extremely pretty. The chapel was fitted up as a 
stage, and the scene represented was the interior of the stable 

* The consecrated bread, or wafer, which they use in their sacrifice 
of the mass, and believed to be changed into the body of Christ, 
j- The Rev. M. Hobert Seymour. See his "Pilgrimage to Rome." 



"the most holy bambino. " 5 

of Bethlehem, soon after the birth of our Lord. There were a 
cow and an ass, somewhat concealed, and apparently designed, 
as in some pictures, merely to show that it ought to represent 
a stable. There was nothing else that could remind us of the 
place; for there sat the virgin Mary, gazing with natural 
delight upon her child, attired in silk of the most vivid crim- 
son, and adorned with a crown of gold, with necklaces of 
gems, and bracelets of brilliant jewels. Such finery seemed 
unsuitable for that meek and lowly maiden, and no less ill- 
suited to the stable, and the society of the cow and the ass. 
Beside her stood the aged Joseph. He was dressed not 
unlike a monk, and leaned upon a long staff, quietly gazing 
upon the child. ' The Bambino/ or child, lay in an elegant 
cradle at their feet. The crown was upon its head, and its 
swaddling-clothes were a tissue of silk and silver and gold : 
while the diamonds and rubies, the amethysts and emeralds, 
and other precious stones, were as numerous as could well be 
arranged on so small an object. All this, however, only occu- 
pied one side of the chapel, and was very ingeniously managed 
so as to leave the other side, and all the back part, to be 
arranged at a distance. There was a rich and well-planted 
country in view. In one direction were the shepherds keeping 
watch over their flocks, not indeed by night, for that could 
not be managed but by daylight. They were seen, not ex- 
actly keeping watch, but sleeping, with their sheep around 
them : while the angel hovers above them, coming to an- 
nounce the birth of the Saviour, who is Christ the Lord. 
Afar off, in another direction, was seen a sort of procession 
winding its way between the hills : while a star, like a comet, 
hung suspended before them, thus denoting them as the wise 
men of the east coming with their offerings. All this, how- 
ever, did not complete the sight; for the roof of the scene, 
and the extreme distance behind, were designed to represent 
the interior of the heavens — the very heaven of heavens. In 
the centre, a most profane and impious attempt had been 
made to represent the Almighty as the Ancient of days — as an 
aged father, looking down upon his son in the form of flesh ; 
while the whole heavens presented a glory, composed of a 
multitude that no man could number of cherub faces, all 
circling around the god, and, like him, looking down, as in 
admiration, upon the scene in the lowly stable of Bethlehem. 



6 "the most holy bambino." 

" On our next visit to the church, the scene had changed. 
The Bambino no longer lay in its cradle, but was held in the 
arms of Mary, and both the mother and the child were 
attired in the same costly and magnificent apparel. The wise 
men from the east had arrived; and, robed as kings, were 
presenting their rich and splendid offerings, while they adored 
the Messiah. In most other respects the scene was not 
changed. 

" This, however, was not the only sight to be seen in this 
church connected with the Bambino, at this season. Whilst 
multitudes of persons, almost entirely of the lower clashes, 
were arriving and departing in unceasing succession, we ob- 
served a little girl of about ten years of age, dressed mo- 
destly, and not unlike a nun, elevated on a platform, and 
preaching to a large congregation ! She concluded at the 
moment that we came within the sound of her voice, and was 
immediately succeeded by a little boy of about the same age. 
He was robed in the ordinary dress of the clergy — with 
cassock and short surplice, with the usual cap worn by the 
priests in the churches. He was a perfect miniature of a 
priest. There was not a smile on his little face. He looked 
crave and serious. He seemed as if he felt what and whom 
he represented. The moment he took his place, he proceeded, 
with the utmost gravity, to lift his cap in the usual way, then 
to cross himself, and then to kneel in private prayer. He 
arose and resumed his cap, took out his white handkerchief 
and used it, looked gravely at the people, repeated a few 
words : again took off his cap, and, after thus mimicking, 
with the most perfect accuracy, every thing the priests and 
monks are in the habit of doing when going to preach — and 
at the same time mimicking them with a gravity of look and 
manner exceedingly droll in so young a child — he actually 
commenced a sermon. So admirably did the little fellow con- 
duct himself, that I could not guess whether all this was done 
in sober seriousness, or in mockery of the priests and monks } 
especially as the child was incomparably schooled in the act- 
ing. The movement of his limbs, and the whole expression 
of his face, were inimitable : so that, while he acted through- 
out with the utmost gravity, the whole congregation, con- 
sisting of men and women, monks and children, laughed long 
and loud at what seemed to them an admirable imitation of 



"the most holy bambino." 7 

their priests preaching. And yet the sermon, otherwise, w:>s 
not one to be laughed at. It was well written ; and the little 
fellow had learned it by heart, and had been most carefully 
trained to go through every portion of it. He would now 
address himself to the fashionable, now to the careless, now to 
the wicked. He would then appeal to the heavens, then to 
the earth, then to the Bambino, with his hand outstretched, 
and his finger pointing to the scene before described. At 
one time his hands were clasped, and his head hung upon his 
breast, with an expression of deep sorrow. At another time 
his arms were flung wide, and his little face turned as toward 
heaven in the expression of adoration. Then, at the conclu- 
sion of each paragraph or division of his discourse, he would, 
in the most cool, collected, and solemn way, so as to excite 
considerable laughter, draw forth his handkerchief and apply 
it to his face, and then pause, and prepare for again pro- 
ceeding. And at the conclusion of all, he knelt down and 
repeated a prayer with much action, flinging his arms about 
as was common with the priests in such prayers, and in the 
end pronounced the blessing, with all the usual crossings and 
formalities. On the whole, it was a very singular spectacle. 
It seemed as if it was thought that, as this was the festival 
of the Bambino, or child, so it was to be a bambino, or child, 
who was to preach on the occasion. I believe, however, that 
the custom is connected with schools, and that the cleverness 
of the scholars is exhibited in this way. At all events, the 
parents of this little fellow — and he was really a fine little 
fellow — looked in very natural admiration on the clever way 
in which he enacted his part as the miniature of a priest. 
The monks and friars, who, in considerable numbers, laughed 
aloud, and even clapped their hands, seemed to enjoy the 
scene as a capital joke; while the mass of the people looked 
on, and laughed and joked, as if it were an amusing species 
of Punch and Judy/' 

TKe Epiphany is the day of the Bambino's great procession, 
exhibition, and blessing of the people, before it is locked up 
for the year. Mr. Seymour says : — 

"About three o'clock in the afternoon of that day we re- 
paired to the church of the Bambino, the Ara Cosli. It was 
exceedingly thronged, but there was a body of military to 
make arrangements and to keep order. There were many 



8 "the most holy bambino." 

priests officiating at some service at the altar, and there was 
ample use of holy water, incense, and music. In the midst 
of these services these priests left the altar, and proceeded 
with incense down the aisle of the church. There were six 
priests, all robed, accompanying the chief or officiating priest, 
together with a large number of incense-bearers, candle- 
bearers, and other officials, in canonicals. All these, together 
with the soldiers as a guard of honor, passed down the aisle, 
while some canticle was slowly chanted, and the censer waved, 
and the smoke ascended, and the perfume filled the church. 
On arriving at the chapel before described as fitted up for the 
Bambino, the procession paused, and the priest bowed low 
before it : they then formally incensed it;* and, again falling 
into procession as before, returned to the high altar and re- 
sumed the services. 

"After some moments, the curtains, which had screened 
from the view the whole choir behind the high altar, were 
drawn aside, and there issued four men bearing enormous 
torches lighted, each torch composed of four large candles, 
and burning in prodigious candlesticks. At the same instant 
a company of soldiers took their station before these torch- 
bearers, and moved towards the side aisle of the church ; and 
then there issued a long column of monks, all in their monkish 
habits, and every monk bearing a lighted candle or torch in 
his hand. Their number was about eighty ; and as this long 
train of monks passed slowly by, they were followed by a 
military band belonging to the pope's guards, and their mar- 
tial music rang and rang again, reverberating through the 
vaulted building with extraordinary power. This military 
band was followed by officials carrying staffs : these again by 
four torch-bearers, as before : then six priests in their robes : 
then by the officiating priest, supported by two others as 
assistants : then by certain officials ; and finally by a guard 
of soldiers. In this procession all parties, priests, monks, 
ecclesiastics, and officials, were robed in full costume. All 
the military carried their arms, and were fully accoutred ; and 
as the whole passed down the church, the monks moving two 

* This means that the incense-bearer threw up the censer toward 
the image, that the smoke of the incense might perfume it. The 
censer is the vessel which holds the incense, and it is suspended by 
chains, so that it may be swung atfout. 



"THE most holy bambino." 9 

Dy two with their candles or torches, it presented a very sin- 
gular and striking appearance. 

"In this order they passed down the side aisle of the 
church, passing the stage where the Bambino lay. The head 
of the procession passed through the door at the end of this 
aisle ; and when the priest came to the stage, instead of pass- 
ing on, he and his assistants paused, entered the stage, and, 
with much reverence and more ceremony, took the Bambino 
from the arms of the virgin Mary, and then followed the pro- 
cession out of the church. I went forth with the priests, 
that. I might witness all. 

" The church of Ara Coeli stands on a height, and is 
approached by a flight of 124 steps of Grecian marble, said to 
be those that formed the approach to the temple of Venus in 
the times of heathenism. At the top of this magnificent mass 
of white marble is the front of the church ; and it was on this 
spot I stood to witness ' the blessing of the most holy Bam- 
bino/ one of the most extraordinary spectacles to be seen in 
the Church of Rome. The whole space below and up the 
long flight of steps was thronged to excess. The masses of 
the people were wedged together as closely as possible. There 
could not be less than five thousand persons : every head un- 
covered, and every face upturned, gazing intently upon the 
scene in front of the church. And such a scone ! There, at 
the height of a hundred and twenty-four steps above the great 
mass of the people — there stood the priests in all their splen- 
did robes. On one side were arranged about forty monks : 
on the other hand about as many more ; and clothed in their 
sombre dresses, and waving their blazing torches in their 
hands, they presented a scene of the most striking kind. In 
the midst were the more immediate officials, holding aloft 
their gigantic torches ) and in the centre of these again were 
priests surrounding the high-priest, who held the little image, 
the Bambino, in his hand. At least one hundred torches, 
each in the hand of an ecclesiastic, glittered and flamed 
around. The incense was waved before them, and enwrapped 
all for the moment in its clouds and perfume. The military 
band filled the whole place with a crash of music, and the 
soldiers of the guard presented arms, as the chief priest lifted 
the little image — slowly lifted the Bambino — raising it above 
his head. In an instant, as if the eternal Jehovah were 
11* 



10 "the most holy bambino. " 

visibly present in the image, among the vast multitude gazing 
from far beneath, every head was uncovered, every knee was 
bent, and almost every living soul was prostrate before it. 
He raised it slowly a second time : he raised it in the same 
manner, only more slowly, the third time; and the muttered 
words of prayer ascended from the vast multitude, and told 
how deeply and universally rooted among the people is this 
worship of the Bambino. I felt as if my blood was frozen 
within me at so awful a spectacle. 

"Another scene soon followed. The Bambino had been 
worshipped by those without the church, and had conferred 
his blessing. He was now to be worshipped by those within, 
and they were to receive his blessing. 

" The procession reentered the church and approached the 
high altar, the priest holding the Bambino before his breast 
in an erect position, with its back to himself. He then 
placed it upon the altar, and he and his assistants knelt and 
adored it. After a short space he again rose, and, taking it 
into his hands, again held the little image before him. The 
music of the military band rang through the arched aisles ; 
the incense poured forth its volume of perfume ; the hundred 
lights waved in the hands of the monks ; the priest lifted 
the little image above his head ; and in an instant the whole 
assembly, at least two thousand souls, lay prostrate upon the 
earth. A thrill ran through my frame at the sight. He 
raised it the second time : he raised it the third time : he 
then slowly returned it to the altar. The people arose from 
their prostration, and the priest carried their idol behind the 
curtains, and the festival was ended." 

This ceremony is called a the benediction, or blessing, of 
the Bambino." And to obtain this blessing, the poor, simple 
populace of Rome congregate in thousands. 

Surely we have here as gross idolatry as any that was ever 
found in Pagan Rome. Here is bowing, kneeling, and pros- 
tration, to a little wooden image ; and a belief that there is 
divine power in it to give the Divine blessing. Can any 
practice be more directly opposed to the commandment of 
God ? — " Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, 
or any likeness of any thing that is in heaven above, or that 
is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the 
earth : thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve 



a THE MOST HOLY BAMBINO." 11 

them ; for I the Lord thy God am a jealous God." All this, 
too, be it remembered, takes place under the immediate sanc- 
tion of the pope : his own guards being in attendance to do 
honor to the idol. When the men of Babylon bowed down 
before the golden image which Nebuchadnezzar the king had 
set up, it was not more gross or authorized idolatry than the 
scene before the little Bambino. And what wicked trifling 
with sacred things to set up children to preach and pray, to 
the manifest amusement of both priests and people ! And 
who can justify the horrid profaneness that dares to paint a 
picture of our Heavenly Father, a blasphemous caricature of 
the Most High ? Truly the Church of Rome has fully earned 
in these, as well as in other ways, the awful title of " Mother 

OF ABOMINATIONS." 

That she should thus succeed in palming such services on 
her members, as the worship of Him who is a Spirit, and 
requires to be worshipped in spirit and in truth, is wonderful ; 
but the sure word of prophecy from the beginning has prepared 
the true Church to expect this ; for is it not in reference to 
the Roman apostasy that it is written, "Whose coming is 
after the working of Satan, with all power and signs and lying 
wonders, and with all deceivableness of unrighteousness ?" 
She never could have succeeded, however, in substituting 
such services for the pure and spiritual worship of God, had 
she not studiously withheld the Holy Scriptures from the 
people ; for therein, from first to last, idolatry is denounced 
in the most fearful terms. The Old Testament describes it 
as the abominable thing which God hates, and shows the 
tremendous judgments which sooner or later attend it ; and 
the New declares that " idolaters" have no portion in " the 
kingdom of God," but that they " shall have their part in 
the lake that burneth with fire and brimstone." Well, then, 
with such services in her churches, may she take pains to 
keep the Bible out of sight. That this is done, she may deny 
in Protestant countries; but what is the fact? In Rome, 
where Romanism is assuredly to be seen in its perfection, 
whilst images are numerous and cheap, Bibles are scarce and 
dear in the extreme. The poor man cannot possibly get a 
Bible in Rome, whilst the rich will only get one with diffi- 
culty. Well, too, may her learned missionaries in all foreign 
lands refrain from translating the Scriptures, and from putting 



12 "THE most holy bambino." 

them into the hands of those to whom they are sent; for if 
they did so, these abominations would soon be made manifest 
to the simple-minded converts. In New Zealand, for instance, 
where the word of God is happily in the hands of many, a 
discussion of nine hours' duration between a clergyman and a 
priest on the points of difference between them, was termi- 
nated by the assembled natives shouting out as with one voice 
the SECOND commandment. And we cannot wonder that 
both in Italy and in Ireland, in so many of her catechisms, 
this commandment is altogether omitted. 

How thankful should we be that in this favored land we 
are not left to any garbled extracts of the divine word for 
guidance in the path of duty; but that we have within our 
reach the entire volume of sacred truth, and may search, each 
one for himself, the records of eternal life. ! what a poor 
substitute for this blessed book are those representations of 
sacred subjects which are set forth in the churches of Home 
for the instruction of the populace — such pantomimes, for 
instance, for it deserves no better name, as that which is annu- 
ally performed in the church of Ara Coeli. It is to no wooden 
idol, nor wooden cross, that the word of the Most High directs 
the sinner to look for life and peace. It is to no gorgeoua 
picture, to no pompous ceremony that it would direct his 
thoughts. Its language is, " Behold the Lamb of God, 
which taketh away the sin of the world !" " the 
blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all 
sin." " Whosoever believeth in him shall not per- 
ish, but have everlasting life." John iii. 16. " Being 
justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord 
Jesus Christ," " by whom we have received the atonement," 
and " through whom we have access by one Spirit unto the 
Father," and may "come boldly to the throne of grace," to 
offer not an idolatrous worship through images and pictures, 
but a spiritual worship, " a reasonable service," "acceptable 
to God through Jesus Christ our Lord." " We know," sa\> 
the apostle, u that the Son of God is come, and hath given ua 
an understanding, that we may know him that is true; and we 
are in him that is true, even in his Son Jesus Christ. Little 
children, keep yourselves from idols." 1 John v. 20, 21. 



Nashville, Tenn, : Published by E. Stevenson & F. A. Owen, for the M. E. Church, South. 



No. 35 



JESUS AND JESUITS 



EROM THE FRENCH OE N. ROUSSEL, 



The other day two hackney-coachmen were quarrelling 
While the one mounted on his seat, sat there silently, arms 
crossed, and whistling carelessly, the other went on vocife* 
rating all manner of abuse : " Fool \" cried he. The other 
remained unmoved. " Thief I" Still silence. " Runaway 
from the galleys !" Nothing said. " Jail-bird !" Still 
nothing. " Forger I" The same imperturbability. " Mur- 
derer !" The same phlegm. 

The insulting party, exasperated by the calmness of the 
philosopher, stops to devise some injurious epithet, which 
includes all others. At last he cries out, " Jesuit I" 

This time the phlegmatic coachman jumps down from his 
box, grasps his whip, and with it lashes the face of his enemy. 
The crowd, collected to witness the quarrel, bursts into loud 
laughter, whilst a tear shone on the copper-colored cheek of a 
foreigner of benignant aspect, who was passing by, and 
whom we will follow. Arriving at the library of the " Maison 
Dor6e/' he stops to look over the titles which catch his eye : 
"Action against the Jesuits ;" " The Jesuits Unmasked. 

The melancholy of our friend seemed to increase, and. as 
if to escape from it, he left the Boulevard for the Rue Riche- 
lieu. As he neared the Theatre Francais, the crowd stopped 
him once more. He inquires the cause, and he learns that 
Tartuffe is to be played. 

" What is Tartuffe V asked he. 

" Well, to be sure !" answered a shoe-black, who was one 
of the hindmost of the string. " Where can this man come 
from, that he does not know Tartuffe — the Jesuit hypocrite 



I JESUS AND JESUITS. 

and thief? Give three francs, take my place, and in coming 
out you will be able to tell me all about him." 

The copper-colored man, without knowing where he was 
going, allowed himself to be pushed on till he reached a bench 
in the pit of the theatre. It would be needless to say that 
the audience applauded every sally made by Molicre against 
hypocrites, and applied by every one to the Jesuits. It may 
also be imagined that our poor foreigner was not cheered by 
all this : but, at all events, we must explain the cause of his 
Badness. 

Olilu was born in a country, of late famous in France, in 
the island of Tahiti. All the world knows that that rock in 
Oceanica, within the last fifty years reclaimed from barbarism, 
has been Christianized by the efforts of Protestant mission- 
aries. All the world knows that not long ago the ultramon- 
tane party, jealous of the success of this mission, determined 
to destroy it, and to confiscate its ruins to the advantage of 
the Roman Church. But all the world does not know that 
the secret spring of that plot was under the hands of Jesuits, 
skilful enough to assign, as a pretence, political interests, to 
excite national pride, and to carry on their vestry-meetings 
upon the ships of our navy, and at the cost of the state. But 
to continue. 

Our Tahitian, then, had already read the Bible, and taken 
the most lively pleasure in contemplating the admirable life 
of Jesus Christ. Jesus ! that one word was for him a sum- 
mary of every virtue, — of uprightness, love, and devotedness, 
— and thus he had but one rule of conduct, to imitate his 
Saviour; but one method of reasoning, to quote his words. 

This was his state of mind when the missionaries of Rome 
arrived, sufficiently Jesuits to conceal their intentions at the 
first. One of them, desirous to learn the language of the 
islanders, took Olilu for instructor, and was not a little sur- 
prised to find in the so-called savage such warm attachment 
to the Bible, such profound admiration of Jesus Christ. But 
as he purposed, if possible, to take him back with him into 
Europe, there to teach the Tahitian language to such of his 
colleagues as were to be sent out as missionaries to the island, 
Father Clement thought it prudent to let it appear that they 
were both of the same religion. Olilu was soon persuaded, 
and they embarked together. During the voyage Father 



JESUS AND JESUITS. 8 

Clement was anxious to begin the conversion of this admirer 
of Jesus, and he thought he could not recommend himself 
more effectually than by calling himself a Jesuit. Unfortu- 
nately, he fell sick, and died before they reached the port. His 
neophyte, still unconverted, arrived, therefore, in England alone. 

The first thing Olilu did was to inquire (for he had learned 
English from the Protestant missionary) where the Jesuits 
were to be found. " The Jesuits !" was the wondering reply : 
" they have been expelled the kingdom for ages." " Where 
shall I find them, then ?" "No doubt in Portugal, where 
the ship you see yonder in port is just going." 

Arrived at Lisbon, Olilu inquires for the reverend fathers. 
" Expelled : expelled from the kingdom and its colonies," was 
the reply. Olilu thought to himself that his friends had 
doubtless only passed the frontier. He came then to Madrid. 
Here again the same question and the same answer, with this 
only difference, that from Spain the Jesuits had been driven 
again and again. 

This time Olilu said to himself that he had done wrong in 
not going straight to France, seeing that- Father Clement was 
a Frenchman. He came then to Paris, where we have met 
him, and noV his sadness and his depression are intelligible 
enough. 

• We have left him at the Theatre Francais, seated next to a 
young man with a timid and downcast look. Olilu, whose 
character was frank and open, had already, between the acts, 
found time to relate his history, ending it with his constant 
question : 

" Where shall I, then, find my friends the Jesuits ?" 

"Hush!" said the young man, in a mysterious whisper; 
but on perceiving that his left-hand neighbor had heard the 
question, and was listening to the answer, he replied aloud : 

" Jesuits ! there are no longer any : they have been driven 
out of France." At the same time, discerning on the fea- 
tures of Olilu signs of most sincere regret, he whispered in 
his ear while giving him a card, " Come to-morrow to this 
address, and we will have some conversation." 

Olilu, true to the rendezvous, was not a little surprised to 
find the young man he had seen the night before in a black 
coat, now dressed in a cassock. " What !" he said, " can you 
be a priest like Father Clement?" 



4 JESUS AND JESUITS. 

"Perhaps." 

"But if so, why did I see you yesterday without the 
sacred costume ?" 

"Because, according to the opinions of the world, an ec- 
clesiastic should not go to the theatre." 

# " But if it be a sin when the world knows of it, is it not 
still a sin, even if the world should be ignorant of it ?" 

"No, my friend: what difference does it make to my 
neighbor whether I spend my evenings here or there ? JNo 
doubt, if people knew it, they might be scandalized, and 
therefore we are bound to take every precaution to escape in- 
discreet remarks ; and, for example, rather than expose the 
cassock in the streets at ten o'clock at night, it is better to re- 
turn home at two in the morning. I repeat, let us, above all, 
avoid scandal : all our doctors are agreed upon that." 

" Of what doctors are you speaking ?" 

11 Of those of your friends." 

" What ! you are a Jesuit !" exclaimed Olilu, joyfully. 

The young man smiled. 

" Yes," he said, in a low tone, remembering that walls have 
ears ; " and know, that I should not have trusted you with 
this secret, if you had not spoken to me so much about 
Father Clement — the poor man is dead, indeed ! — but you 
can still be useful to me in teaching the language of your . 
country." 

" I cannot make it out," said Olilu, quite bewildered. " I 
came into Europe to search for the Jesuits, and to each one 
of my inquiries I receive for answer : Driven from England — 
driven out of Portugal — out of Spain — out of France. As 
to that, I could still say to myself that the disciples of Jesus 
Christ had always been persecuted, and thus I could reconcile 
the virtues of my friends with their general expulsion. But 
now I learn that, according to their doctors, darkness sancti- 
fies sin ; and that, provided scandal be escaped, vice is no 
more vice. According to this rule, it is evil that you are 
careful to hide, while our common Master recommends us to 
hide what is good. ' When ye pray, enter into your closet, 
and shut the door/ are the words of Jesus. But you — 
Jesuits — you shut the door of your closets, that you may sin. 
Another thing surprises me. Yesterday, at the theatre, 
before our next neighbor, you told me — speaking of the 



JESUS AND JESUITS. 5 

Jesuits — ' There are no longer any/ And to-day you your- 
self are one ! One of these assertions must then have been 
false?" 

"No," 

" Yet you said, in a loud voice, ' There are no longer any 
Jesuits in France !' " 

u Yes ; but I added, in a low voice, ' There are none in 
the eye of the law." 

" That — according to you — that is not a falsehood ?" 

" No, my friend. According to our doctors it is simply a 
mental reservation." 

" But the Master of your doctors — he whose name you 
bear — says, on the contrary, ' Let your yea be yea, and nay, 
nay; for whatsoever is more than these, cometh of evil/ 
That is the uprightness of Jesus : and it seems to me that it 
contrasts strangely with the double-dealing of his imitators. " 

While the young man was planning an answer, Olilu con- 
tinued : " For the rest, now that I have seen your theatres, I 
own I share the opinion of the world as to their not being 
proper places for you." 

" No doubt,, my friend, if, like the generality, I had been 
there to seek for worldly enjoyment." 

" Were you there then for your edification ?" 

"Why not? Do you not understand that it is indispen- 
sable in order to combat evil, to have seen it, and to enter at 
times into unholy places in order to unfold their dangers to 
others ? Thus my intentions in going there were the purest 
possible. My aim was to do good : and, in order to attain 
that end, all means are good." 

" You think so ?" 

" Doubtless ; and to our moralists you owe the well-known 
precept — ' The end justifies the means/ " 

" I do not know your moralists, but I know that an apostle 
of Jesus has said, ' Shall we do evil that good may come, as 
some have said of us, whose condemnation is just?' It 
seems to me, sir, that we ourselves are the people here con- 
demned." 

" 'It seems to me,' is properly said," answered the young 
man, in an ingratiating tone : "for that expression conveys to 
me an admission on your part that the matter may be dif- 
ferently viewed. Now, so soon as an opinion can be discussed, 



6 JESUS AND JESUITS. 

so soon as it is only probably good, probably true, from that 
moment each one is free to adopt or reject it. Even our 
doctors admit that of two probable opinions, we are at liberty 
to choose the least probable. This is what we call ' proba- 
bility.' " 

" Probability !" said Olilu, with increasing astonishment. 
" I have never seen that word in the gospel. On the contrary, 
I have met with passages like this : ' Abstain from all appear- 
ance of evil/ You see that there is a very wide difference 
between my holy Lord Jesus and your indulgent Jesuits." 

" My friend, I do not know in what edition of the Bible 
you find out these quotations, but they are unfamiliar to me." 

II Look, then, at my New Testament." 

" What ! a Protestant New Testament ?" 

II I know no other. Is there, then, any other ?" 
" Certainly ! There is this of the Pere Amelot." 

"Let me see it. But I do not find it the same as mine. 
One of these translations, then, must be faulty. Look, for 
example : here it is said that a bishop ought to have been, 
and not that he ought to be, the husband of one wife. Now, 
lower down, the wives are spoken of as being still alive. So, 
then, your Amelot is mistaken." 

" No, my friend, it is not a mistake : it is a prudent correc- 
tion/' 

" What ! the P6re Amelot correct Grod ! Say, rather, that 
it is a fraud." 

" Not exactly. We must distinguish between one fraud 
and another. Thus : to deteriorate any article of sale for the 
purpose of gaining money would be a sin ; but to allow one's 
self an innocent prevarication to keep men under the whole- 
some influence of religion, — this is permitted. You can 
understand that the celibacy of the priest is useful to the 
Church, edifying to the people, favorable for the purpose of 
confession. Now, to modify slightly a text, in order to sup- 
port a serviceable doctrine, which would have been shaken by 
a too servile translation, — this is not a fraud; or, at least, you 
must allow that it is a pious fraud." 

"A pious fraud ! But, ,sir, you take a strange advantage 
of the pliant nature of words. A pious fraud ! The words 
offend my ears as much as if you were to speak of a veracious 
lie or a virtuous crime. I own that my gospel has not brought 



JESUS AND JESUITS. 7 

me on as far as this. I see there, that the Christian is to be 
harmless as a dove, to walk as a child of light, to behave 
honestly as in open day." 

" My friend, I am not accustomed to so much disputation. 
Our first duty, as members of the society, is to obey our 
superiors." 

" But, sir, one can obey, and yet make use of his reason." 

" Reason, say you ! Nay, reason goes for nothing where 
Loyola commands. Thoughts, reflection, conscience, have 
henceforth no meaning for us. At a sign from the General 
of the Order we are bound to renounce our will, our ideas, 
our intelligence, our affections, and to let ourselves be turned 
and torn like a corpse, without any resistance." 

" And you call that being a Jesuit ?" 

" Yes." 

" And you call that imitating Jesus ?" 

" Yes." 

" Well, then, I tell you that you Jesuits are as much like 
Jesus as the devil is like G-od, hell like to heaven, night to 
day, falsehood to truth, hypocrisy to candor ! 0, now I un- 
derstand well those passages of the Bible which speak of the 
wolf in sheep's clothing, and of Satan disguised as an angel 
of light. They evidently refer to the Jesuits taking the 
name of Jesus." 

Here the young man with the downcast look tried to smile, 
while grinding his teeth ; and taking out his notebook, asked 
the name and address of his friend, who gave them both and 
went away. 

On the morrow Olilu had disappeared. A short time after, 
a dungeon of the Holy Inquisition opened, closed, and opened 
no more ! 

These are the men who, at the present time, want to govern 
us ! These are the men who call themselves the great cham- 
pions of Catholicism ; or rather, who pretend that they them- 
selves constitute Catholicism. Be it so. But let us then be 
permitted to reject this Catholicism for the gospel, these 
Jesuits for Jesus, hypocrisy for uprightness, the devil for the 
Lord ! Better the drunkard in the alehouse, the gambler in 
the tennis-court, than the Jesuit beneath his mask ; for the 
drunkard owns himself a drunkard, the gambler a gambler; 
and thus it is possible that they may be converted. But the 



8 JESUS AND JESUITS. 

Jesuit, speaking of his virtues in the very midst of his vices, 
deserves only the reward of hypocrites — eternal damnation ! 
Woe to the Church pushed on toward that declivity ! Woe 
to the people lying under that extinguisher ! A little longer 
delay, and it will be too late ! 

But perhaps these men are better than their principles, 
and that they do good, albeit they preach evil. Be it so ; but 
then the whole of Europe and the best of the popes must be 
the guilty parties ; for the pope and Europe joined to sweep 
away this virtuous society from the face of the earth. Either 
Clement the Fourteenth, and the monarchs and the nations of 
his day, were criminal persecutors, or the Jesuits, whom they 
accused of all sorts of crimes, were justly expelled. Now, 
was it Henry the Fourth who counselled Ravaillac to murder 
the Jesuits, or the Jesuits who instigated Ravaillac to stab 
Henry the Fourth ? Was it the Pope Ganganelli who caused 
the Jesuits to be poisoned, or the Jesuits who led to the 
poisoning of Ganganelli? Was it the English Parliament 
that sought to blow up the Jesuits by a Gunpowder Plot, or 
the Jesuits who devised that hideous conspiracy against the 
Parliament ? Who, in Spain, was guilty of high treason, the 
king or the Jesuits ? Who revolted in Paraguay, the Portu- 
guese or the Jesuits ? Who, from the recesses of the con- 
fessional, have directed so many intrigues, spoiled so many 
families, guided so many daggers, the Jesuit confessors or 
their martyrs ? Open the page of history which answers you, 
and (rare occurrence !) you will see the people and the kings 
unite to shake from their houses and their kingdoms this ver- 
min into the mire ! 

And shall we now go and draw them out of this mire, to 
seat them at our sides, and to be sullied by them ? No : let 
us open our eyes : let us lift our heads, already drooping 
beneath the poisonous influence of that Jesuit-morality poured 
on us by Romish pulpits and Catholic books ; and, in order to 
place the widest possible gulf between us and the Jesuits, let 
us go to Jesus himself. 

Would you know, in one word, the impassable distance 
between the doctrine of the Jesuits and that of Jesus ? Li<ton. 
It is this : Jesus pardons sins which have been committed : 
the Jesuits excuse sins yet to be committed. By his free and 
complete pardon of the past, Jesus disposes men to do good 



JESUS AND JESUITS. 9 

in future : the Jesuits, by their indulgence toward our future 
conduct, lead to all that is wicked. Jesus pardons, that the 
pardoned man may joyfully love his brethren, and seek to 
serve them : the Jesuits excuse, in order to give to the man 
thus excused the right to go on sinning with impunity. 

I shall make myself better understood by a story : — A good 
king of a wicked people consulted two of his ministers as to 
the best method of having his laws obeyed. " Sir/' said the 
one, "make a code that will be easy to follow. Tolerate 
little offences, mitigate the penalties imposed upon great ones : 
call lying, a joke ; call impurity, pleasure ; theft, necessity ; 
crime, folly ; and reserve your punishments for monsters of 
iniquity so atrocious that you will scarcely find any such to 
punish." 

The king followed this advice ; and it came to pass that the 
wicked nation, profiting by the indulgence of the law, became 
yet more wicked. They lied, and called it jesting : they 
debased themselves, and called it amusement : they stole and 
murdered, and excused themselves by pleading destitution or 
drunkenness : so that the laws required yet further relaxation 
before they could be kept, and the pitch was reached of call- 
ing evil good, and good evil. This is what the morality of 
the disciples of Loyola leads to ! 

But the good king, discovering his error, called in his other 
counsellors, who said : " Sir, reestablish your former code of 
strict laws ; and when the terrified people feel themselves guilty 
at your tribunals, which condemn them all to the loss of one 
of their limbs; when the. whole nation is confronted with 
your soldiers, armed and ready to execute the sentence ; then 
proclaim throughout the realm a general amnesty for the past, 
and invite your subjects to come and ask you for all they 
need, in order to live for the future as good and loyal citizens. 
But that they may learn to put faith in your promises, endure 
yourself the sentence wjiich you pronounced against the 
guilty." The king took the advice, and, in the sight of all 
his people, had one of his hands cut off by the axe of the exe- 
cutioner, and with the other beckoned to the crowd to come 
and receive his pardon. Do you think that any one could 
remain indifferent to such a spectacle ? Do you think that in 
future a subject ransomed by the blood of his king would be 
found to disobey his benefactor ? Do you not rather see that 



10 JESUS AND JESUITS. 

gratitude would melt the hardest heart, and that, at all events, 
no one would dare to presume that this king, who had pun- 
ished past sin thus in his own person, would excuse sin in 
time to come ? This is the religion of Jesus Christ ! 

Know it, then, each and all, (and this is the conclusion at 
which I have been longing to arrive,) Jesus Christ pardons 
us — not some of our sins, but all of them — not only our lighter 
offences, but our hiost serious — not because of any compensa- 
tion in money or in penitence, but freely ! And his apostle 
tells us, in so many words, that we are "justified freely by 
grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus." Rom. 
iii. 24. If you ask me on what condition, I answer you as 
does the same apostle, that it is on the simple condition of 
trusting, of giving yourself up ; or, to use the words of the 
Bible, of " believing in the Lord Jesus Christ/' What did 
the prodigal son do when he came back destitute to throw 
himself into his father's arms ? He trusted him ! "What did 
the woman, when she came, all stained as she was, to weep at 
the feet of Jesus ? She trusted him ! They are pardoned, 
are saved, only because they believed and trusted. There is 
nothing else and nothing better for you to do. Open your 
heart to God, confess your sins to him, pray to him with tears, 
as on your dying-bed you would pray to an offended father to 
forgive and bless you ; and be sure that God is not less pitiful 
than an earthly father ! 

Reader, remember that, in writing Jesus and the Jesuits, 
I have not only at heart to separate you from the latter, but 
to bring you nearer to the former. If, having read this tract, 
you only go and declaim against the disciples of Loyola, with- 
out seeking to become a disciple of Jesus, you have gained 
nothing by such reading— nay, you have rather lost by it — 
and you have in part imitated the conduct of those you are 
blaming. For it is Jesuitical to blame evil without doing 
good. 

Would you know more about this saving faith ? Do not rest 
satisfied with these few lines, but go and search in the word 
of God ; and if the extent of the whole Bible frighten you at 
first, begin by reading the New Testament. 



JESUS AND JESUITS. 11 



EXTRACTS IN PROOF 

It has been said that the true is not always probable. This 
is the case as regards the doctrines we have attributed to the 
Jesuits : we are, therefore, obliged, in order to convince the 
most incredulous of the truth of what we have stated, to quote 
a few short passages from the doctors of that Satanic society. 
To abridge them, we take our quotations from a work lately 
published : " Moral and Political Doctrines of the Jesuits. 
Paris, at Jules Labite's, 1844." All would do well to seek 
for more complete information in that work. 

We will now, without any comment of our own, let the dis- 
ciples of Loyola speak for themselves : — 

Probability. — " It is probable to me that the cloak I pos- 
sess is really mine : I judge, however, that it is more probable 
that it belongs to you. I am not obliged to restore it to you, 
but I may safely keep it." (Ferdinandus de Castro Polo.) See 
the twelfth page of the work which we have named above. 

Lying. — " Every time, then, you invincibly believe that ly- 
ing is commanded to you, lie." (Car. Ant. Casnedi, p. 34.) 

False Witness. — "A witness may not receive any thing for 
telling the truth, but he may receive a salary on account of 
the injury that he has done himself thereby ; if he receives 
any thing in return for false witness, he is not obliged to make 
restitution." (Eminanualis Sa, page 44.) 

Mental Reservation. — " When we begin by saying, I swear, 
we must add, in a low voice, this mental reservation, to-day, 
and continue aloud, I have not done this or that." (Vincen- 
tius Filliucius, page 55. ) 

Corruption of Judges. — " If a judge has been bribed to 
give an unjust sentence, it is probable that he may keep the 
sum." (Honoratus Faber, page 73.) 

Theft. — " Small thefts, committed at different times and 
on various occasions, from one or more persons, are never 
mortal, however large the total sum may be of which we have 
made use." (Etienne Bauny, page 84.) 

Murder. — "A poor man in this case (a case of extreme 

poverty) may even kill any who would prevent him from 

taking what is necessary for him." (H. Busembaum, p. 90.) 

"An ecclesiastic may lawfully kill a calumniator 



12 JESUS AND JESUITS. 

who threatens to spread atrocious accusations against him or 
against his religion." (Franciscus Amicus, page 110.) ' 

Infanticide.—" If a modest girl has been seduced against 
her will by a young libertine, she may free herself from the 
fruit before it becomes animated. " (N. Airault, pa°-e 111.) 
^ Parricide. — "A son is allowed to rejoice at the murder of 
his father, which he has committed, being drunken at the 
time, and that on account of the wealth he inherits thereby." 
(Georgius Gobat, page 146.) 

. " We should conclude more justly in saying, that 
it is sometimes allowable to get drunk innocently, if by that 
drunkenness a great good is to aocrue." (The same, page 147 ) 

" I may very naturally rejoice in the good fortune which 
comes to me by my father's death, without rejoicing in his 
death, which procures me the good fortune. We must 

make ourselves familiar with this doctrine, for it may be use- 
ful to all those who desire a certain good, and have the power 
of obtaining it through the death of some one." (Ant. Cas- 
nedi, page 148.) 

" If any one be stupid enough to judge invincibly that the 
desire of committing homicide is not a sin, he will not sin in 
desiring to commit it." (Jacobus Platelius, page 119.) 

" Catholic children are bound to denounce their heretical 
parents or relations even if they know that these will 

be on this ground sent to the stake. They may even 

refuse them food until they die of hunger. Fagundez adds, 
even, that they may kill them in preserving moderation." 
(Ant. Escobar, page 150.) 

We have no words to describe the indignation such doc- 
trines excite in us : we therefore prefer to leave the reader's 
conscience to judge of them. 

We might quote on impurity, adultery, on certain pas- 
sages which the most audacious dare only to give in Latin ; 
but we think that a Christian pen should not transcribe these 
in any language, and we therefore suppress them. 



Nashville, Tenn. : Fublisbod by E. Stevenson & V. A. Owen, for the 11. E. Church, South. 



No. 36. 



THE CHRISTIAN CATHOLIC. 



FROM THE FRENCH OF N. ROUSSEI*. 



In a retired village of there lived, not loDg ago, a 

good cure, among some two or three hundred parishioners. 
One Sunday, as, coming from mass, he reflected upon the 
little benefit which his auditors had probably derived from it, 
he found himself in the midst of some dozen of his people, 
who were chatting before the door of the church. It occurred 
to him that, by a familiar conversation with these simple vil- 
lagers, he might be more useful to them than by chanting to 
them the vespers in Latin. He halted, therefore, among 
them, seated himself upon a stone, and, his two hands sup- 
ported on the head of his walking-stick, he commenced thus 
in a good-natured tone : — 

" Tell me, John, are you a Christian ?" 

"Why, yes, Mr. Cure/' replied John, all amazed. 

"And how did you become a Christian V 

" Because — because you baptized me when I was quite lit- 
tle ; and so am I a Christian." 

"Well, but my good fellow, do you think that that thief 
whom the police arrested last month upon the highway, and 
who was condemned yesterday to ten years in the galleys, for 
having stolen $4,000 from our notary — do you think that that 
robber was a Christian V 

" Most certainly not !" 

"However, like yourself he has received that baptism 
which renders you a Christian. And you, George, are you a 
Christian V 

"Yes/' 

"And why?" 

" Because I — I've made my first communion." 

"Well, you have heard speak of Cartouche ?" 
12 



1 THE CHRISTIAN CATHOLIC. 

" Yes, sometimes — was he a Christian ?" 
*' No, lie was a brigand, like Mandarin. Well now, my 
friend, Cartouche and Mandarin had both received their first 
communion : so you see, also, that the communion does not 
make the Christian." 

Our worthy peasants looked at each other, not well knowing 
what their cure" was after. He continued : — 

" Mr. Schoolmaster, you can better inform us, I dare say, 
what renders you a Christian. " 

The Schoolmaster, persuaded that the cure" had selected 
him to decide the difficulty to the satisfaction of all, was, for 
the moment, greatly nattered to hear himself thus appealed 
to; so, after having coughed, and cleared his throat, he 
replied : — 

"I am a Christian, first, because I go every Sunday to 
mass ; secondly, because I go to confessional every month ; 
thirdly, because I observe the penances imposed : I repeat my 
paternosters : I keep the fasts — Lent, and all the rest." 

"Your answer is longer than the others, [The pedagogue 
looked well satisfied with this commencement,] but it is worth 
no more, [ The master betrayed his vexation,'] for you must 
remember," continued the cure, "that all the heretics con- 
demned by the Church, all the hypocrites who trade in re- 
ligion, all who go to mass, fast, recite their paters, observe 
their penances ; and yet neither these heretics nor these hy- 
pocrites are Christians." 

The auditory was thoroughly taken by surprise — every one 
feared to be questioned : a child of ten years of age present 
was alone unconcerned : it was to this child the cure next 
addressed himself. 

" Tell me, my little Joseph, What must one do to be a 
Christian ?" 

" Sir, we must love the blessed God, and be very good." 
"Blessed art thou, Heavenly Father!'' exclaimed the pas- 
tor, raising his eyes to heaven, " for that thou hast revealed 
to babes the things which thou hast hid from the wise and 
prudent ! Yes, my friends, that which makes the Christian 
is the feeling of his heart. He who has confidence in Jesus 
Christ to obtain from him forgiveness of his sins, and who, 
thus pardoned, loves Grod with all his heart, and his neighbor 
as himself, he is a Christian : in two words, reli-ion eon^M 



THE CHRISTIAN CATHOLIC. 6 

not in the ceremonies performed by our feet, our hands, or 
our mouths — it is in the sentiments of faith and love of our 
hearts.''' 

The cure here ended his conversation, and withdrew. These 
words, which so completely astonished our good peasants, will 
not so much surprise the reader, when he learns that our 
cure, for some time past, had devoted himself to the reading 
of a great volume, inherited from an uncle, and that that study, 
in which he was seen to be engaged morning and evening, 
preceded and followed by prayer, had caused him more than 
once to forget his breviary, and had sensibly modified his 
religious opinions. 

He thought he saw, in his Church, more than one thing 
which was not good; yet, not being at present quite clear 
about it, he continued, at the same time, to read his book, and 
to say the mass. 

But, this time, he had wounded the self-esteem of the 
schoolmaster, who, to revenge himself, reported the said con- 
versation to the vicar : he spoke in his turn to the bishop, 
and the following Thursday the cure received from his superior, 
who was also his uncle and his friend, the letter now to be read : 

" My dear nephew, and brother in Jesus Christ : — It has 
been told me, that last Sunday you held in your church a 
conversation, the consequence of which will be to bring into 
contempt all the holy practices of our Church, and which puts 
the salvation of man beyond the influence of the priest. You 
are aware how dangerous such doctrines are. I wish to 
believe that your words have been ill understood, and that, 
without doubt, you meant to say that all these practices ought 
to be accompanied by the sentiments of the heart ; but that 
ceremonies and sentiments are equally necessary; that if 
faith, if repentance, be necessary on the part of the believer, 
the intervention of the priest is no less necessary to receive 
that faith, to receive that repentance, and to fulfil the cere- 
monies of baptism, confirmation, extreme unction, etc., without 
which there is no salvation. I hope, then, that you will reply 
in this sense, and, at the same time, thus explain yourself in 
your next exhortation at mass. 

"I salute you," etc. 

The cure read and re-read this letter : he found something 



4 THE CHRISTIAN CATIIOLin. 

which hurt his heart and his understanding ; however, he 
scarce knew how he should reply. He did not 

reply : he waited, and during that time it was noticed that he 
shut himself more frequently up in his study to pray and rend 
his folio, as was apparent from the end of his garden, toward 
which his window looked. At length, after some weeks of 
study, here is the answer he sent : — 

" My Lord, and dear Uncle : — I said that the peculiar cere- 
monies of the Roman Church help nothing for salvation ; and 
to-day, after having prayed to God, and read his word, I say 
again, they help nothing. No ceremony is, indeed, indis- 
pensable, however good as an aid sometimes. There are only 
three ways by which salvation can be obtained : either by 
ceremonies alone — and in this case the greatest villains would 
be saved, while dying in impenitence; (that which you would 
admit no more than myself;) or, the religious ceremonies and 
the sentiments of the heart are equally indispensable — that 
which you believe to be true, and that which I am about to 
show to be false. If baptism, confirmation, fasts, mass, ex- 
treme unction, etc., are indispensable in order to be saved, the 
adulteress whom Jesus Christ pardoned, the thief to whom 
our Saviour made promise of paradise, St. Stephen, who died 
a martyr, are consequently not saved ; for, in the time of the 
adulteress, mass was not said : the thief had no time to be 
baptized : St. Stephen did not receive extreme unction. 

" If the ceremonies of the Church are indispensable for 
salvation, Christian sailors, cast by shipwreck upon a desert 
isle, Christian prisoners, dying in heretical countries, or 
savages who may have been converted by the simple reading 
of the Bible, and who should stay in their country, far from 
every priest and every sacrament — all these men, notwith- 
standing their sentiments, their faith, their love, would not 
then be saved, because they have not done that which they 
could not do. 

" If our ceremonies were absolutely necessary to salvation, 
it would only need that a bad priest should refuse, by caprice 
or hatred, the sacraments to his parishioners, that they might 
be damned. If you reply that these are only exceptions, and 
that, in these cases, men may be saved without our religious 
ceremonies, I answer, These practices are not, then, abso- 
lutely necessary, and therefore not in themselves efficacious 



THE CHRISTIAN CATHOLIC 5 

If the grace of Grod sufficed for St. Stephen, why shall it not 
suffice for me ? If one may be saved without the absolution 
of a priest, in a desert isle, why not in my village ? Is Grod 
less powerful in one age than in another — in one country than 
another ? However, my lord, think not that I wish to abolish 
all ceremonies : there are some which I believe were established 
by Jesus Christ himself, and which, for that reason, are good 
and useful. But it is one thing to say that a ceremony and a 
sacrament are useful, another to assert that they are indis- 
pensable. Tea may be good, but, when it fails, one can dis- 
pense with it ; while water is indispensable, and, if it fails, we 
die. But if we follow the consequences of this unfortunate 
principle admitted by our Church, of the necessity of the 
sacrament and of the priest for the salvation of believers, you 
will be alarmed at the abuses to which it gives rise. 

"Our Church has declared ceremonies necessary, and the 
heart of man, naturally corrupted, has seized upon this prin- 
ciple with eagerness, and has pushed it farther. The more 
outward worship appeared indispensable, the more he believed 
he could dispense with the worship of the heart ; so that each 
has now learned how to reserve to himself his favorite passion, 
while imposing on his body a few extra ceremonies. For man 
will consent willingly to all privations, to all sacrifices, pro- 
vided that you leave him at liberty to preserve the idol of his 
heart : one avarice, another pride, a third impurity. He will 
give you his time, his money, his exertions : he will submit 
himself to fasts, to abstinences, to confessions, etc. He will 
regard all these as good, useful, necessary, indispensable for 
salvation : he will even attach to them more importance than 
you desire, and that precisely so much the more easily to 
satisfy his dominant passion. My lord, this is a truth of 
which I have seen a thousand instances in my Church : I avow 
that I have myself experienced the same thing more than 
once. I have remarked, after attending mass in the morning, 
that I have thought myself authorized to act more freely in 
the evening. 

" More than once I punctiliously observed Lent, in the 
secret hope of making up for it afterward. At other times, 
tempted to sin, I gave way more easily, thinking that, on 
confession, I should obtain absolution. After confession, I 
felt more at ease. It seemed as if my conscience, lightened 



6 THE CHRISTIAN CATHOLIC. 

by the absolution of the priest, could well now afford, without 
much risk, to charge itself afresh with some little sin my 
lord, how deceitful and desperately wicked our hearts ' One 
must study one's self with care to discover it; but k sure 
that if others have not discovered it in themselves, it is be- 
cause they are willing to be deceived. Let no man tell the 
people the whole truth: let no man say the ceremonies are 
good, as external signs, to symbolize the sentiments within 
us; but that, after all, they are but symbols— that baptism 
by water is only an image of the purification of our heart from 
all its vices — that the Lord's supper is only in remembrance 
of the great sacrifice of Jesus Christ, who died to redeem us 
from our sins. 

^ " Let us tell them, indeed, that their attention should be 
directed within them, and in studying themselves they will 
recognize the truth of these words of the New Testament : — 
Men ' being filled with all unrighteousness, fornication, 
wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness ; full of envy, murder, 
debate, deceit, malignity; whisperers, backbiters, haters of 
God/ etc. Rom. i, 29, 30. And when these unhappy sin- 
ners shall feel deeply their spiritual misery, let us disclose the 
treasure of salvation : let us announce to them that an ex- 
piatory sacrifice has been made for them, and that, according 
to the word of God, Christ has borne our sins upon the tree, 
that his blood has been shed for the remission of the sins of 
many : tell them that God gives them that heaven which 
they have not merited ; and if they dare not believe in such a 
benefaction, open the -Bible before them, and let them there 
read for themselves those sweet truths which have too long 
remain concealed : ' You are fully justified : you are saved by 
grace, by faith ; and that not of yourselves : it is the gift of 
God/ God grant, my dear uncle, that these promises of the 
Bible may rejoice your own heart even as they have mine ! 
Accept/' etc. 

Three days after, my lord sent one who should replace our 
cur£, and invited him to pass some weeks at his dwelling. 
The bishop was a respectable old man — sincere and of good 
taith. He had never cherished the least doubt against the 
authority of his holy Mother Church ; also, as a respectful 
arm submissive son, he subjected his body to its most minute 
observances— his health had even suffered thereby. Evei 



THE CHRISTIAN CATHOLIC. 7 

seeking an internal peace which he could not find, experi- 
encing the want of assurance of his salvation, he added pil- 
grimages to fasts, to pilgrimages hair-cloth next his skin; 
and all this greatly fatigued his body, and tranquillized his 
soul but little. He ceased not to ask himself if he had done 
sufficient to gain heaven ; and he trembled at the thought 
that he was still, perhaps, some steps off, perhaps at the 
threshold, but still exposed to fall into hell ! Then, fresh 
abstinence, fresh fears; and thus life flowed away, divided 
between the sufferings of his body and the anguish of his 
soul. One may suppose, in such a case, to what intent he 
has summoned the poor cure : he hoped to lead him back to 
opinions more conformable to those of the Church, from which 
he saw him wandering rapidly. The cure accepted the invi- 
tation of his bishop, who at first said very little, but received 
him with kindness. 

The following day, in order to be more quiet, my lord 
resolved to start with him for the country, having no other 
witnesses than three or four children, who were watching 
their flock a few steps beyond. 

During a walk in the park, he broached at length the great 
subject. 

" Tell me, my dear nephew, where did you pick up these 
new doctrines, so opposed to those of the Church ? Is it not 
Satan who has suggested them ?" 

" No, sir : it is the Bible/' 

" That is why you have distributed one hundred copies of 
this book in your parish, according to what I have heard ?" 

" I thought, sir, to do no harm in placing the words which 
God has addressed to all, before the eyes of the faithful." 

" But do you not perceive that the simple people cannot 
understand this book, which ought only to be read and ex- 
plained by the priest ?" 

" No, I do not see that : I find, on the contrary, God has 
judged that all are able to comprehend it, since he recom- 
mends it to be read by all. Thus Jesus said to the Jews, 
' Search the Scriptures.' The Psalmist said, ' The law of the 
Lord is perfect, converting the soul : the testimony of the 
Lord is sure, making wise the simple.' Moses desires the 
king to read the law every day of his life. He says to all the 
people : i Put my word in your heart, bind it on your hands ; 



8 THE CHRISTIAN CATHOLIC. 

inscribe it on your houses/ St. Luke commends the inhabit- 
ants of Berea, because they compare the preaching of Paul 
with the word of God. St. Paul, writing his Epistles to 
different Churches, addresses himself not only to the priests, 
but says : ' To you who are at Home : ' To all those in Achaia.' 
And tf all the Israelites in the time of Moses, all the Jews of 
the time of Christ, all the inhabitants of Home and of Achaia 
might read the Bible, I see not why all the Christians of our 
day should not also read it." 

"But do you not know/' replied the bishop, "that the 
Bible is obscure, and cannot be understood by all ?" 

The cure smiled, and replied : " You shall judge." At 
the same time he beckoned to the children who tended the 
flock to approach ; and when the little ones of ten or twelve 
stood in a semicircle ; near the bishop, the cure said to the 
youngest : — 

" My child, ' Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all 
thy heart, with all thy soul, and with all thy mind !' Do you 
understand me?" 

"0, yes, Mr. Cure ! we must love the blessed God." 

"And you, my child, listen: 'There is none righteous: 
there is none that doeth good.' Do you understand V 

The child cast down his eyes : he had so well comprehended 
these words, that his conscience had caused him to apply them 
instantly to himself; and as he had just been striking one of 
his companions in a quarrel, he answered :— - 

" It was he who began : he gave me a kick, too." 

" It was much more your fault," said the other. 

"No !" said a little girl, "it was both of them." 

"Well, my little friend," said the cure, "attend: 'Christ 
has died for our sins — there is no more condemnation for those 
who are in Christ — believe in the Lord Jesus, and thou shalt 
be saved.' What does that mean, my child ?" 

"It means that God will pardon our sins if we trust in 
Jesus Christ." 

"Now you," said the cure" to the fourth: "'If any lack 
wisdom, let him ask of God, who giveth to all liberally.' 
'Pray without ceasing/ What do these words mean'/" 

" Wait ! that means that we must pray to God to make ua 
very good." 

" Quite right, my children : fight no more : love Jesus Christ. 



THE CHRISTIAN CATHOLIC. 9 

who has died to obtain the forgiveness of your sins : ask God 
to make you very good, and you will go to heaven/' 

The children escaped, quite delighted. 

"Well/' said the cure to the bishop, "it appears that these 
children have understood my words well enough." 

"It is not astonishing," said the latter, "they were so 
simple." 

" Yes ; but these words, so simple, were precisely those 
of the Bible. If these children have understood them, I 
suppose that their fathers and mothers will understand them 
likewise." 

" Yes ; but all the pages of the Bible are not so clear a3 
those you have quoted." 

"I grant it; but even if the simple believer had understood 
these four passages only of all the Bible, would it not be worth 
his while to read it ? Moreover, experience and good sense 
unite to affirm, that after the Bible has been read some time, 
with prayer, the most simple reader will very soon see an easy 
passage help him to understand another less clear : that which 
he has learned will help the understanding of that which 
remains to be learned, and then these obscurities will be com- 
pletely cleared up. When a friend addresses us a letter of 
which some words are effaced, we do not on that account 
reject the sheet of paper : we read a second time, a third time, 
until that which precedes, or that which follows, helps us to 
understand the difficult words." 

" But," answered the bishop, somewhat perplexed in raising 
all these difficulties, " is it not better to submit the Bible to 
the interpretation of the councils, whose decisions are directed 
by the Holy Spirit, according to the promise of Jesus Christ V 

" But," returned the cure, without hesitation, " why should 
the Holy Spirit, who can direct the decisions of councils, not 
direct also the thoughts of the simple believer who shall im- 
plore it with humility ? for that promise was not made alone 
to councils, but to as many as the Lord should call." 

" But, then, if each one may read and interpret the Bible, 
you will have as many creeds as individuals ; while in sub- 
mitting the Bible to the interpretation of councils, you will 
have a uniform faith." 

" I doubt it j for how will uniformity be attained better by 
reading the decrees of the councils than by reading the Bible ? 
12* 



10 



THE CHRISTIAN CATHOLIC. 



Will it be easier to understand the Latin of the Council of 
Trent, than the Latin of the Vulgate ?" 

"No; but the priest is there to interpret the decrees of 
the council to the simple believers." 

" But, then, will it be easier to make the believer under- 
stand the French of his cure, who speaks in the pulpit, than 
the French of De Sacy, who speaks through the translation 
of the Bible ? Latin for Latin, French for French. I like 
better to read the text than the commentary. The Bible is 
worth more than the explanations; unless we pretend that 
when God speaks, men know better what he intends to say 
than himself, and that men have a greater capacity to make 
themselves understood." 

" Finally," said the bishop, with impatience, " what do you 
wish to conclude from all that V 

" I conclude, that since the Bible is the word of God, every 
man is bound to go and draw from that word the rule of his 
faith and conduct, without any one having the right to im- 
pose another upon him ; and that, if the simple believer ought 
to listen to his pastor, it is only so far as his pastor speaks 
conformably to the Bible. Then the faith of the Christian 
will be an enlightened faith, and so much the more firm as it 
shall be more intelligent. Then the Christian shall be able 
to say in his conscience that he obeys God rather than men, 
since he searches in the book which all Christian communions 
(the Catholic, Apostolic, and Roman Church the first) are 
obliged to recognize as the source of all religion — as the word 
of God. Is it not at the source that the water of a rivulet is 
most limpid ? Does not each step that it proceeds over the 
dirt and mud of this earth contribute to pollute it ? Well, in 
the same way, will not religion be most pure at its source in 
the mouth of God, and will not every step made in passing 
from mouth to mouth tend to corrupf it '/ Give, then, the 
Bible to the people, and then they will understand that it is 
not certain vain ceremonies that save the sinner, but the blood 
of Christ alone, and the renewal of the heart by the Holy 
Ghost/' 

The cure spoke with such warmth, that the bishop saw he 
should never succeed in inducing him to abandon this new 
course by mere persuasion. He brought into play, therefore, 
turn by turn, the fear of hindering his advancement in the 



THE CHRISTIAN CATHOLIC. 11 

Church, the menaces of the condemnation of Rome, etc. But 
all availed nothing : the cure returned always to this response, 
" Show me by the Bible that I am mistaken, and then I shall 
be ready to submit." And he supported, with resignation, 
all the petty persecution raised against him. 

A few months later, the bishop fell seriously ill : . he grew 
worse day by day. The fear, or rather the certainty of an 
approaching death, doubled his terrors on the uncertainty of 
his salvation. He endeavored to assure himself, and wondered 
that he was unable. In vain he repeated to himself that but 
few saints had submitted to austerities so severe and so 
numerous as he : continually his conscience reminded him of 
his sin, and made him fear that he had not yet performed 
sufficient penances for the expiation of his faults before Him 
" whose eyes are too pure to regard iniquity." In this state 
of trouble he recalled the calm, the peace, which the cure 
seemed to enjoy when with him ; and the thought that that 
serenity of soul was, perhaps, the fruit of his new convictions, 
and that, after all, there might indeed be something there 
good and true — that thought brought light to his spirit. At 
the hour of death, one is little troubled about proprieties before 
the world, which we should have observed in a state of health. 
The bishop summoned his nephew, and sent to say that he 
desired to converse with him upon serious subjects. The cure" 
betook himself to the dying man. On seeing him enter, 
"Welcome," said the bishop: "take a seat, and let them 
leave us alone for a few minutes." When all had withdrawn, 
and the cure, having closed the door, reseated himself by the 
bedside of his uncle, the latter said, in a sorrowful and solemn 
voice : — 

" My dear friend, I have no time to lose ; and without going 
out of my way, I come to the question at once. You know 
my life, you know that I have acquitted myself scrupulously 
in the duties of my religion ; and yet I confess that in the 
moment of appearing before Grod, even after having received 
the holy sacrament for the last time, I tremble at the thought 
of appearing at the tribunal of my Judge ! Something more 
powerful than myself tells me that I am not ready to appear, 
and I feel that I do not enjoy, to my last hour, that Christian 
calmness which sees death approach without fear, which wel- 
comes it even with joy. I have observed in you, dear brother; 



12 THE CHRISTIAN CATHOLIC. 

this precious calm; and even when harassing you for yom 
doctrines, I was internally struck by the composure which 
they produced in your soul. ! I pray you, tell me quickly 
how you have obtained it." 

" Look here," replied the cure : " I have been myself in 
the state of mind in which I find you now. In studying my 
life, I discovered each day new imperfections : the more I 
constrained myself to live holily, the more I felt sin weigh on 
my conscience. If I performed a good action in the eyes of 
the world, I felt that it was bad in the eyes of God, because 
vanity and pride had always a share therein. If I forced my- 
self to make a resolution in the sight of God, at the instant 
when deciding to do good, I found an interested motive enter 
to urge me also, and thus pollute the source. Finally, I came 
to hate myself. I held life in horror ; and what contributed 
to increase my terrors was, that I found in my Bible-readings 
such declarations as these: ' The wages of sin is death" 
' Cursed is every one who continueth not in all things written 
in the book of the law to do them !' ' Whosoever shall keep 
the whole law, and yet offend in one point, is guilty of the 
whole.' One day I thought I should lose my senses, and in 
despair I cast myself on my knees, striking my breast and 
exclaiming, ' my God ! take pity on me. I am a great sin- 
ner : what must I do, what must I do to be saved V On the 
instant I raised myself, opened my Bible, cast my eyes upon 
it, and there I found these very words which I had just ut- 
tered — 'What must I do to be saved?' Struck by the co- 
incidence, I hastened to read the words following. They were 
precisely the reply to our question, thus : ' Believe in the 
Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved/ ' Bdin-r, and 
thou shalt be saved,' said I. 'What! is it sufficient to be- 
lieve V 1 thought I must have misunderstood : I 
re-read these words, and I found again and again, ' Br/in-r in 
the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved.' Tn order to 
throw light on this thought, I looked at other passages of my 
Bible, which treated of the same subject, and which were 
indicated by references. I found a great number, the sense 
of which was always, 'Believe in the Lord Jesus Christ, thy 
si7is shall be pardoned, and thou shalt receive eternal life.' 
I confess, however, that this faith which was required, this 
salvation offered so freely — all this was at first in my head 



THE CHRISTIAN CATHOLIC. 13 

without entering my heart ; when one day the word of the gos- 
pel, ' saved by grace/ fell like light into the depth of my soul. 
' G-race ! 0, 1 understand/ cried I : ' I was condemned to hell 
as a brigand upon the scaffold, and when about to perish, my 
king sends me a pardon !' 

" 'I understand I owed to my Master a heavy debt of sins, 
and my G-od has cancelled them ! He confers a favor — grace ! 
0, I understand this word ! how sweet it is ! how powerful 
to chase all fear from my heart ! Now, living or dying, I am 
saved ! What love my Grod has had for me ! and to-day I am 
saved. What love I must have for him ! How pleasurable 
to do his will ! How willingly I would sacrifice myself to his 
service, and to the welfare of my brethren, who know not yet 
what this grace is — the pardon, the love of God !' Grace ! 
this word encompassed all my soul ; and then an ever-increas- 
ing peace spread itself through my heart. I experienced the 
reality of that promise of Jesus — ' I give you my peace ; not 
as the world giveth : let not your hearts be troubled, neither 
be afraid.' Since that time I have had no greater happiness 
than to labor to effect the will of my God. I feel as if con- 
sumed with desire to make known that good news to my 
brethren, and I am happy, indescribably happy, when I see 
my words fall in a heart well prepared, and another soul 
escaping hell by turning to the Saviour." 

" But, dear brother/' interposed the bishop, moved by these 
words of fire, "who guarantees you that that assurance of 
your salvation, which you believe you experience, is truly a 
reality ratified in heaven by G-od himself, and that it is not 
purely the fruit of your imagination V 

u I have for my guaranty the witness of the Holy Spirit, 
which I bear in my heart, and which made St. Paul say, ' that 
the Spirit of God witnessed with his spirit that he was adopted 
of God.' I know that the world may tell me that this is still 
the fruit of my imagination. But what matters what the 
world says and thinks ? It is sufficient for me to feel, myself, 
that it is otherwise. I say to all, Ask G-od for his Spirit to 
enlighten you : you will then learn how to sanctify yourselves. 
If my counsel be put in practice, the truth will soon be seen ; 
and I bless my God, if they believe me not, and mock at 
me, I am not the less assured of my salvation. I pray for 
the unbeliever, and I hope always for him : I know that God 



14 THE CHRISTIAN CATHOLIC. 

can convert him even at the last hour. Yes, rny dear uncle, 
it is not in yourself that you must seek your salvation — your 
works, always imperfect, will never give you security. You 
need a Saviour, powerful, perfect, holy. You need Jesus 
Christ, the Son of Grod, Grod manifest in the flesh. It is only 
with such a support that you will no longer fear to fall, and 
such an advocate with Grod that you will be assured against 
condemnation/' 

During the following days the two friends had several con- 
versations. The bishop grew weaker and weaker, but, at the 
game time, his soul seemed to renew its strength : he listened 
much more than he spoke. He made his nephew read him 
different parts of the New Testament; among others, the 
Epistle to the Romans, and that to the Galatians. At length, 
one Sunday evening, as his nephew, kneeling at the foot of 
his bed, concluded a prayer in these words : " My God, we 
look not to ourselves, nor to our works, but solely to Jesus 
Christ for our salvation," the bishop raised his eyes to heaven, 
and while pronouncing these words — "Amen! Lord! Amen!" 
he breathed forth his last sigh. 



THE HOLY CATHOLIC CHURCH. 

(Isaiah lx. 1-11.) 
BY C. WESLEY. 

Arise, and shine with borrow'd rays, 

Bright in reflected lustre shine : 
Thy light is come, the Sun of grace 

Appears in majesty divine : 
Jesus, that uncreated Sun, 

Is risen, on his Church to stay, 
To make through thee his glory known, 

The glory of eternal day. 

While nations unenlighten'd lie, 

With darkness palpable o'ersprcad, 
On thee the Day-spring from on high, 

The Lord his brightest beams shall shed ; 
Stamped with the sinless character, 

His praise thou shalt display below, 
And, putting on thy Saviour here, 

Jehovah's glorious image show. 



THE CHRISTIAN CATHOLIC. 15 

Drawn by thy grace, the.sons of night, 

The Gentile world, shall come to thee, 
And kings, o'erpower'd with heavenly light, 

Admire thy dazling purity : 
Soon as to thee their face they turn, 

They shall their royal state forget, 
On earth look down with holy scorn, 

And lay their crowns at Jesus' feet. 

Sion, look round with joyful eyes, 

On all those gathering nations gaze, 
Behold, with one consent they rise, 

And flock, and flow to thy embrace ! 
Thy countless sons and daughters see : 

They come from far with duteous speed, 
Come to be nursed and fed by thee, 

With milk sincere, and living bread. 

Afraid to think the vision true, 

Thy heart with dubious joy shall beat, 
Thy heart enlarged shall pant anew, 

When forced the real bliss t' admit, 
When hosts and fleets to thee resign 

The fullness of the lands and floods, 
And earth, and sea, and all is thine, 

And thou art Christ's, and Christ is Cod's. 

Their wealth the children of the east 

Shall first into thy treasury bring, 
Devote their most-beloved and best, 

As holiness to Sion's King : 
Incense they shall with gold bestow, 

Join'd to thy faithful wrestling race, 
And fill Jehovah's courts below 

With sweet perfumes of prayer and praise. 

Kedar shall all its flocks present, 

Nebaioth's rams mine altar load, 
The Gentiles yield with pure intent 

Themselves in sacrifice to God: 
The offering shall accepted be, 

When precious souls the offering are, 
The beauty of my temple see, 

And feel my glorious presence there 

Who, what are these, that as a cloud 

Swiftly divide the darkened sky, 
Like flocking doves, a countless crowd, 

Like doves which to their windows fly ! 



16 THE CHRISTIAN CATHOLIC. 

Weary of wand'ring after rest, 
Lo ! to the ark, the Church, they come, 

And, housing in their Saviour's breast, 
Haste by a heavenly instinct home. 

Surely for Christ the isles shall wait, 

And ships to bring thy sons from far : 
They come from their dispersed estate, 

With all they have, and all they are : 
Jesus, thy Lord, the Holy One 

Of Israel, for their God they claim, 
Who makes in thee his nature known, 

His image, and his glorious name. 

Thy God and thee who never knew, 

Strangers shall preach the gospel-word, 
The genuine love of children show, 

And build the temple of their Lord : 
Their kings shall bow to the Most High, 

And thee into their bosom take, 
And gladly all thy wants supply, 

And tend thee, for thy Saviour's sake 

For lo, my wrath is pacified, 

My wrath which did for ages burn . 
Whom once I smote and scatter'd wide, 

I bid thee to my arms return : 
My mercy hath removed thy sin, 

Thy long obduracy is past, 
Israel again is grafted in, 

And all thy sons are saved at last. 

Wherefore thy gates shall open stand, 

By day and night immensely wide, 
T' admit the crowds from every land, 

The Gentile-world's inflowing tide : 
The nations shall in Christ believe, 

Their kings thy willing converts be, 
And, brought within thy walls, receive 

Their highest dignity from thee. 



Nash villa, Tenn. : Published by K. Stevenson & F. A. Owen, for the M. E. Church, South. 



No. 37. 



POPERY INJURIOUS TO MAN. 



The declaration of our Lord, " Wherefore by their fruits 
ye shall know them," Matt. vii. 20, is the test which he has 
given to his followers for the detection of false teachers in all 
ages of the Church, and the consequent exposure of those 
hurtful tenets by which they seek to gain a hold on the belief, 
the property, or the actions of their fellow-men. 

Unquestionably this test has been often improperly applied ; 
for example, when men have concluded that Christianity itself 
is of no value, or that any of the forms under which it is pro- 
fessed are inherently bad, because of the immoral conduct of 
some of its professors. We rightly infer that he is a bad man 
whose habitual conduct is unjust or impure; but in order to 
blame his creed with himself, we must prove that he is acting 
according to it. The conduct of Judas proved him to be an 
utterly wicked man, without in the slightest degree affecting 
the character of the religion which he falsely professed ; but 
the unblushing and unbounded sensuality and heartless cruelty 
of Mohammed show, not merely that he was an abandoned 
man, but that the creed which sanctioned his proceedings, 
and was indeed framed for that purpose, was no less bad. To 
prove any one a bad man, you have only to convict him of a 
course of immoral conduct; 'but to prove him a teacher of a 
false system of religion, you must further show that his bad 
conduct naturally flows from his creed. 

The rule above mentioned, properly guarded and used, is 
invaluable in connection with the subject of popery. It is 
easy to prove by the test of Scripture that Romanism has no 
solid foundation there. But this argument utterly fails to tell 
upon Romanists ; for they may at once admit its truth, as 
some do, but add that traditions and the decrees of councils, sub- 
sequent to the close of the Scriptures, have gradually developed, 



POPERY INJURIOUS TO MAN. 



and added to the system of his Church, those very thing3 to 
which Protestant Christians object. Nor is the refutation of 
popery from Scripture duly appreciated even by Protestants. 
On men in general, it almost wholly fails to produce any im- 
pression. A system may be clearly proved to be opposed to 
the truth, and dishonorable to the blessed God — the Father, 
the Son, and the Holy Grhost ; and yet men shall be found 
speaking of it in words of extenuation, and even in the tones 
of admiration and sympathy. But if, pointing to the fruits 
of a system, we can show that during a long course of years 
they have been uniformly hurtful to the interests of mankind, 
we have an argument much more likely to be generally under- 
stood and duly appreciated. This, then, is our present subject. 

The system of popery has now been in existence for more 
than 1200 years. /During the whole of that extended period 
its operations have been nearly uniform — its tendencies in- 
variably the same. Have its fruits been good or bad . ? Has 
its influence been injurious or beneficial to the well-being of 
man? Will it bear comparison, in this respect, with the 
system which it endeavors to crush — the Protestant evangelical 
religion ? We have no doubt as to the true answers to these 
inquiries. It will be our endeavor now to show, without ex- 
aggeration, that the system of popery has always been in the 
highest degree injurious to human welfare; and that, from 
its very nature and principles, it could not have been other- 
wise. We shall naturally glance, in passing, at the very oppo- 
site tendencies of the evangelical faith. 

I. The resignation of the right of private judgment— -and 
this not in religious things only, but in secular also — forms an 
essential requirement of the Church of Rome. The creed of 
Pope Pius IV., a full adoption of which is declared absolutely 
necessary to salvation, has the following articles: — "I most 
firmly admit and embrace the apostolical and ecclesiastical 
traditions, and all other constitutions and observances of the 
same Church. I also admit the sacred Scriptures, according 
to the sense which the holy mother Church has held, and does 
hold, to whom it belongs to judge of the true sense and inter- 
pretation of the Holy Scriptures; nor will I ever take or 
interpret them otherwise than according to the unanimous 
consent of the fathers." Not to dwell upon the fact, that it 
is utterly impossible to find the fathers unanimously consenting 



POPERY INJURIOUS TO MAN. 3 

to any one of the peculiar doctrines of popery, and that, there- 
fore, the rule is utterly fallacious — how evident in these 
articles is the mental and spiritual prostration required of her 
votaries by the Romish Church ! Every part of the system 
is notoriously in agreement with the principle here laid down. 
To yield reason, faith, conscience, unreservedly to the keeping 
and direction of the Church, is almost the first lesson which 
the Romanist learns. Every ecclesiastic is an absolute dic- 
tator to those beneath him, and at the same time abject as a 
slave to those of higher grade. The prostration of the laity 
in spiritual things is complete. To think for themselves is 
deemed not only no part of their duty, but a sin — and one of 
no common kind. 

Such being the case, we should be prepared, apart from all 
knowledge of facts, to expect that those who implicitly resign 
faith and conscience to the direction of others, would speedily 
resign all — would sink, instead of rising, in the scale of freedom, 
intellect, and universal improvement. Spiritual doctrines 
essentially slavish, must of necessity prove unspeakably detri- 
mental to the development of true excellence in any of its 
forms. We might arrive, without any doubt, at the conclu- 
sion, that if a hundred laboring men with their families were 
completely isolated, and shut up to the full workings of the 
Romanist, and an equal number of precisely the same grade 
to the operations of the evangelical, system — the former would 
steadily sink, and the latter as surely rise, in intelligence, in 
comfort, in true liberty. If we look at facts, we shall find 
such an opinion strictly verified; and the more close our 
search, the stronger will be the conviction to which we at last 
come. The traveller in Switzerland, who passes from one of 
its Protestant to one of its Romanist cantons, or who from one 
of the former crosses the Italian border, is made at once aware 
of the fact by the increased filth, degradation, and misery, 
which abound on every side. Take a survey of the whole 
continent of Europe, and we find that its several nations are 
slothful, Sensual, uninformed, and wretched, just in proportion 
to the firmness of the hold upon them really possessed by the 
Church of Rome. Spain, Portugal, and Bavaria will at once 
occur to every mind as among the most painful illustrations 
of this remark. A comparison between Protestant England 
and the unhappy sister island is more within our own reach 



4 POPERY INJURIOUS TO MAN. 

To the influence of popery alone is the fact fairly ascribable, 
that in 75 towns of Ireland, with a population on the average 
of 2500, there is not to be found a single bookseller's shop, 
or any other means for the diffusion of knowledge. In con- 
nection with popery only could the fact be deemed credible, 
that, in the middle of the nineteenth century, an archbishop, 
in defiance of all scientific discoveries and proofs, should have 
endorsed the statement that the sun's diameter is six feet, and 
that the earth in size is six times larger than all the heavenly 
bodies united ! This has been done by Dr. Cullen, Romanist 
Primate of Ireland.* But it is needless to enlarge. The fact 
may be known and read of all men, that civil bondage, igno- 
rance, filth, and misery, are the invariable accompaniments of 
popery, whenever the influence of her system is fully developed, 
and unchecked by that of a purer faith. 

The noble achievements of the nineteenth century— the 
amazing advances of man in comfort, in wealth, in civilization, 
in science, and, in arts— have been effected without the help 
of popery, and, we must add, in opposition to its spirit and 
influence. It is in connection with the more generous, ex- 
pansive, and ennobling faith of the Protestant that true 
liberty has flourished, and the human race been blessed with 
a thousand fruits of intellect and industry. " Wherefore by 
their fruits ye shall know them." 

II. The religion of God is designed to make men happy. 
It confirms and helps that desire for happiness which God has 
himself implanted in every human breast. Thus his own 
benignity, his kindness to his fallen creatures, is affectingly 
displayed. Every page of the Bible teems with proofs that 
" God is love." Nothing is there forbidden, but what has a 
sure tendency to make us miserable; nor any thing enjoined, 
but with an equally manifest design to promote our blessed- 
ness. "Live joyfully." "Rejoice in the Lord alway. 
"Let the children of Ziqn be joyful in their King." These 
are but specimens of the often-recurring precepts of Scripture. 
And reasons for such joy, with the means of maintaining it, 
are abundantly provided in the religion of the Bible. .No in- 
telligent Christian can entertain the slightest doubt that in 
Droportion as any man sincerely believes and consistently 

* Annali delle Scienze Religiose — toI. vi. No. 18, page 461. 



POPERY INJURIOUS TO MAN. 5 

practices that religion, he must be happy. But the very re- 
verse of this is true of popery. It is a religion of fear. To 
whatever extent it is really understood it must inflict misery. 
The multitude, who never think, may not find in it any serious 
interruption to their low and vicious pursuits. It will, indeed, 
patronize their Sabbath dance, or the idle follies of their car- 
nival : it will compound for more serious immoralities on the 
terms of a light penance : it requires of them little more than 
the mechanical observance of a mere round of ceremonies. 
And this is enough for men who are kept in ignorance. But 
it is far otherwise with those who sometimes do, and must, 
think. The whole system of popery is founded in false views 
of the character of God, and of the religion of the Bible. He 
is regarded as a Being hostile to man ; and his religion as a 
thing which must be worked out and secured by human per- 
formances and human sufferings. Hence it becomes a system 
of bondage, of fear, and of woe. Penance is substituted by it 
for penitence — the sufferings of the sinner for those of Christ. 
The benighted devotees of the sanguinary gods of India have 
never inflicted upon themselves more cruel tortures than have 
been sustained for years by members of the Romish Church. 
Abstinence from food, carried to the verge of starvation — hair 
shirts irritating the skin — insufficient clothing — cold cells — 
and the scourge — are among the means by which the Roman 
system has taught men "to make their calling and election 
sure." 

One chief source of happiness in this life is found in the 
family relation. Marriage was instituted and blessed by the 
Creator himself while man remained in a state of innocency. 
The presence of Christ at a wedding feast, and the perform- 
ance of his first miracle, have marked it with his peculiar 
approval. The apostle commends it as " honorable in all." 
Innumerable proofs attest the fitness of this holy relation to 
lighten care, to soothe sorrow, to purify and elevate, to endue 
with all benevolent feelings ; and, where it is accompanied by 
true piety, to assist the soul in its heavenward progress. Yet 
upon this divine institution, this precious relic of Paradise, 
has the Church of Rome dared to place her stigma. Paying 
it the worthless compliment of making it, what God has not 
made it, a sacrament, she has degraded it from that dignity 
in which, by the will of the Creator, it is really placed. She 



6 



POPERY INJURIOUS TO MAN 



teaches that in all cases the married state is less holy than the 
unmarried: hence her monastic institutions with all their 
spiritual pride, their ill-concealed misery, and their scenes of 
wickedness to which we would not further allude; and, in 
the case of her clergy, marriage has been for centuries entirely 
prohibited. This is indeed a master-stroke of Satanic policy. 
Thus kept from every tender attachment and relationship 
which they dare to avow, a people separate from all others, 
the priests are more completely and devotedly servants of the 
Church which robs them of domestic consolations for her own 
selfish purposes. And yet that Church claims as her head 
and first bishop Peter the apostle, whom we know to have 
been a married man ! 

Hear, on the contrary, the teachings of Scriptural truth. 
" Grod is love." He has pleasure in the prosperity of those 
that fear him. He loves to see his children happy. He has 
given his Son to suffer and die for our sins. He requires of 
us not penance, but repentance for sin, and the believing, 
grateful reception of salvation in Christ : they who believe in 
Christ Jesus the Lord are permitted to rejoice in God through 
him, by whom they have now received the atonement. They 
are indeed to be dead to sinful pleasures ; but they have, in- 
stead, an ample supply of pleasures infinitely more satisfying, 
and which never inflict a sting. The man who seeks for true 
happiness has no room for hesitation between popery and 
evangelical truth. " By their fruits ye shall know them." 

III. All men can appreciate the value of sound morals. 
Without them society has no security for the continuance of 
its privileges or rights for a single hour. Property, happiness, 
honor, and life are alike at stake. It is painful to contemplate 
the amount of the immorality which has naturally and neces- 
sarily resulted from various parts of the papal system. 

What its influence must have been in regard to truth, the 
very keystone of the social fabric, we may easily judge. A 
decree of the third council of the Lateran, unrepealed at the 
present hour, affirms that "oaths which oppose the utility of 
the Church, are to be called perjuries rather than oaths." 

In the year 1414, the Emperor Sigismund gave to John 
Huss a safe-conduct to and from the council of Constance : 
that is, a solemn pledge, in writing, that he should come and 
depart without injury of any kind. The council subsequently 



POPERY INJURIOUS TO MAN. 7 

passed the following decree : — " The holy council declares 
that no safe-conduct given by the emperor to any heretics or 
reputed heretics, thinking thereby to reclaim them from their 
errors, however binding the instrument may be considered, 
shall be of any force, or ought to be, to the prejudice or hin- 
drance of the Catholic faith or ecclesiastical jurisdiction : so 
as to prevent the proper ecclesiastical judge from inquiring 
into the errors of the parties, and otherwise proceeding against 
them as justice may require, should they obstinately refuse to 
renounce their errors : although they may have come to the 
place of trial relying on the said safe-conduct, and otherwise 
would not have come. Nor shall he who gave the said safe- 
conduct continue to be bound thereby in any respect, seeing 
he has done all that is in his power." Until this infamous 
decree shall be renounced and denounced by a council equal 
in authority to that of Constance, who can confide in the most 
solemn protestations of the Church of Rome ? In utter con- 
tempt of his safe-conduct, John Huss was burned to death. 

The Theology of Peter Dens is used as a text-book in Roman 
Catholic institutes. We select a specimen of the morality 
therein inculcated. 

The question is put, whether it can ever be right for a 
priest to divulge what he has heard in confession. To this it 
is replied : " No, it cannot — though the safety or life of a man, 
or even the ruin of the state, might depend thereon. Q. 
What answer then ought a confessor to make, when asked 
about the truth which he knows only from sacramental con- 
fession? A. He ought to say he does not- know it; and, if 
necessary, confirm it with an oath I" To the very natural ob- 
jection that this would be a lie, the reply is furnished, "I 
deny it ! for such a confessor is asked as a man, and he answers 
as a man; but he does not' know the truth as a man, though 
he does know it as G-od !" Precisely the same atrocious sen- 
timent is taught in a class-book used at Maynooth College, 
towards the maintenance of which the English nation makes 
a large annual grant ! That such a system can ever produce 
reverence for truth is impossible. 

We might next advert at lengtn to the subject of the con- 
fessional. Did propriety permit, numerous testimonies might 
be adduced, showing that questions are there put by the priest 
to his solitary penitent, such as must soon destroy modesty, 



8 



POPERY INJURIOUS TO MAN. 



and corrupt the mind: that many young persons of both 
sexes, who visit the confessional, receive instruction in evils 
of which they might have remained to the end of their days 
entirely ignorant: that an awful power is thus acquired by 
the priesthood over individuals, families, and even states ; and, 
finally, that, as connected with absolution, the practice of the 
confessional constitutes a system by which crime is patronized 
and encouraged. 

The system of indulgences is founded in the belief of a 
'purgatory to be endured after death, by those who shall ulti- 
mately enter heaven. And it is asserted by Pope Leo X., 
that " the Roman pontiff may, for reasonable causes, by his 
apostolic authority grant indulgences, out of the superabundant 
merit of Christ and the saints, to the faithful, as well the living 
as the dead;" and that "all persons, whether living or dead, 
who really obtain any indulgences of this kind, are delivered 
from so much temporal punishment due according to Divine 
justice for their actual sins, as is equivalent to the value of 
the indulgence bestowed and received." How this system 
worked in the days of Luther is well known. Armed with 
the plenary authority of the Romish court, the notorious Tet- 
zel levied money, pardoned sins, delivered souls from purgatory, 
and even licensed the future commission of crimes. These 
are historical facts which none can deny. It is no less unde- 
niable that for sins marked, or supposed to be marked, by 
higher degrees of enormity, the power of pardon was reserved 
to the pope himself; and that a fixed rate of charges for the 
forgiveness of such sins, still existing, was framed and used 
in the Roman chancery. There is hardly any crime, except 
heresy and disobedience to the Church, for which pardon has 
not been granted by the Church of Rome, for the sake either 
of penance or of payment. What must have been the influence 
thus exerted on the morals of the world ! 

To turn aside the force of these facts, the apologists of 
Rome say, "These are wiser, better days. These practices 
were the excrescences of the middle ages." We cannot admit 
the plea. Have they been formally abandoned and denounced '/ 
Is the confessional closed ? Are its polluting details given 
up? Was not a year of indulgence declared in ls.dl .' 
Are not contributions still levied in Romanist countries for 
the holy souls in purgatory ? Until such sins be deplored, 



POPERY INJURIOUS TO MAN. 9 

confessed, and forsaken, who can honor or trust the system ? 
It must be regarded as still holding that the end justifies the 
means : that the good of the Church renders perjury and 
falsehood meritorious ; and that it is wrong to keep faith with 
heretics. Thus we must still regard the Church of Rome as 
in fact the source of incalculable immorality of every kind. 
But when these necessary admissions and recantations shall 
be made, the Church of Rome will have abandoned her proud 
boast, her peculiar characteristic — that of infallibility. If she 
has been wrong for ages in these most important respects, 
why not in all others ? Therefore these admissions will never 
be made ; and therefore let not Protestants trust her — let the 
motto of the Reformers still be ours, "No peace with Rome I" 

IV Another subject deserving of remark is the credulity 
enjoined by the Church of Rome in requiring belief without 
evidence, and contrary to fact, reason, and common sense. 
Hence it is treated as heresy and a sin against the Holy 
Ghost to doubt about manufactured relics, vain legends, and 
pretended miracles; and multitudes are deluded by such 
things to the present time. Need we remind the reader that, 
in our days, more than a million of pilgrims poured into 
Treves to see the Holy Coat — the seamless garment of Christ 
— which identical coat is said to be in the possession of more 
than twelve different potentates, monasteries, or churches at 
the same time ? Need we state that, daily, the faithful are 
flocking to see an image of the Virgin, the eyes of which 
are said to move miraculously? Need we tell that every 
seventh year the pope consecrates a number of little waxen 
images, called Agnus Dei, from the image of a lamb, which is 
impressed upon them ; and that the possession of one, or any 
particle of one, of these, is said to preserve from all spiritual 
and temporal enemies, from dangers by fire, water, storms, 
and sudden death ? But enough. The Church of Rome un- 
deniably changes faith into credulity. The one rests on God, 
the other on man. The former exalts, the latter debases. 
The tendency of all the superstitious fables, pretended relics, 
and foolish miracles of Rome, is to contract the human mind, 
and to fix the affections on unworthy, unsatisfying, and de- 
basing objects. 

V Again, hope is one of the brightest possessions of man. 
The hope, especially, which relates to a world beyond the 

13 



10 



POPERY INJURIOUS TO MAN. 



grave, is his chief comfort, his best support, amidst all the 
sorrows of life. It purifies and exalts the spirit, aod enables 
it to rejoice in the very midst of sorrow. Take away the hope 
full of immortality from the man who stands beside the dying- 
bed of his loved ones, or lies helpless and gasping upon his 
own, and you reduce him to deep misery. 0, who would be 
robbed, who would rob, of such a hope ? But what is the 
teaching of popery on this subject ? What the hope which it 
gives for a dying-hour ? Listen, and let the awful statement 
lead you to determine on maintaining yet greater distance 
from the melancholy creed and the unholy system of which it 
forms an important part. 

Very few real Christians, the Church of Rome teaches us, 
enter into rest when they die. Notwithstanding all their 
penances and prayers, the merits of their saints and the inter- 
cession of the virgin : notwithstanding sacraments, including 
absolution and extreme unction, they are plunged, on dying, 
into actual flames, the torments inflicted by which are " so 
horribly severe that no sufferings borne in this world can be 
compared with them •/' and the duration of which is also very 
great. The latter may be inferred from the long terms con- 
nected with indulgences, or the remission of purgatorial pains. 
Thousands of years are sometimes mentioned. In one instance 
we are assured that "the pardon for saying five paternosters, 
five aves, and a credo, is twenty-six thousand years and twenty- 
six days of pardon." 

O, if there were one particle of truth in these awful repre- 
sentations : if there were but the barest possibility of their 
truth, Christian readers, you should weep anew for your 
friends dead in Christ, as you never wept before. You thought 
of them as happy. You deeineu your own suffering lot on 
earth deserving tears of pity, and their circumstances in glory 
tears of joy. But will you for one moment, can you, dare 
you, think of them as enduring intolerable anguish? Will 
you admit that you have no better hope for yourselves ? That 
when you cease to be seen here, you will not have entered 
into life, but have sunk down into purgatorial pangs? (1<»d 
forbid ! Away with such falsehoods ! There is no condemna- 
tion for them that are in Christ Jesus. For them to live is 
Christ, and to die is gain. Absent from the body, they are 
present with the Lord. They are with him in paradise. The 



POPERY INJURIOUS TO MAN. 11 

heavenly voice has proclaimed, and commanded it to be written, 
in opposition to this intolerable falsehood of Rome — "Blessed 
are the dead which die in the Lord from henceforth" — from 
the very moment of their dying — " Yea, saith the Spirit, for 
they rest from their labors." 

But why has this awful fable been devised — this imaginary 
fire kindled ? For the sake of dominion over the dying and 
the loving friends of the departed. Prayers, alms, and masses 
(which are not said for naught) are affirmed greatly to help, 
and sometimes to deliver, souls in purgatory. By this device 
a revenue surpassing that of the most wealthy monarchs has 
accrued to the coffers of Rome. 

Now, it is said that the pains of purgatory constitute a debt 
due by sinners to the Divine justice, which the pope has the 
absolute power of remitting. Does he really believe this ? If 
so, he is the most cruel and wicked of men, for neglecting, 
for a single day, to release every pious suffering soul. Do the 
priests really believe that their masses deliver souls from pur- 
gatory ? They are only less guilty than the pope himself in 
that they do not constantly, day and night, perform the 
requisite services, and that as a simple act of humanity, with- 
out money and without price. " By their fruits ye shall know 
them." 

VI. We must not fail to notice the sentiments maintained 
by the Church of Rome in reference to the law of Christian 
love. We at once admit with shame the sad divisions of Pro- 
testants, and the unlovely spirit which too often attends them. 
Still, there is a large and increasing amount of brotherly love 
maintained amongst members of the several Protestant com- 
munions. The really intelligent and peaceable amongst all 
bodies agree to differ, regard each other as fellow-Christians 
and co-workers, rejoice in each other's prosperity, and hope 
to meet in heaven. But how is it with Rome ? She une- 
quivocally maintains that, out of her pale, there is no salvation, 
and to the full extent of her power she takes care that there 
shall be no peace, no enjoyment, no continuance of life here. 
The unrepealed decree of the 4th general council of the 
Lateran declares that " heretics are not only to be anathema- 
tized, but deprived of all property and civil rights, and de- 
livered over to the secular power to be punished and extirpated." 
Every Roman Catholic bishop takes, at his consecration, an 



12 POPERY INJURIOUS TO MAN. 

oath that he will " by all means in his power persecute and 
fight against heretics and schismatics, and rebels against our 
lord the pope." 

In a recent sermon, Dr. Doyle ventured on the astounding 
assertion that the Church of Home has not persecuted, though 
individuals connected with her may have done so ! Has he 

forgotten^ or does he think we can forget, the inquisition 

the holy inquisition — its infernal dungeons and instruments 
of torture? its autos-da-fe? its barefooted friars accompa- 
nying the awful procession, and aiding in the murders ? Does 
he not know that when Charles the Ninth of France perpe- 
trated his slaughter, which has affixed to St. Bartholomew's 
day the mark of blood for all generations, the pope ordered 
Te Deum to be sung for the "Divine assistance" thus afforded 
in exterminating heretics, and struck medals, still extant, 
commemorating, both by graphic representations and by the 
inscription, " The Slaughter of the Huguenots V 

We know that persecution has sometimes been connected 
with the Protestant name, but it has always been a direct 
violation of Protestant principles. Of the Ptomish system and 
doctrines it is the direct and natural result. 

And until those principles be abandoned from which such 
crimes have sprung — until Rome has confessed to the world 
the iniquities of which we speak, humbling herself before God 
and man — we cannot, dare not trust her. We can have no 
fellowship with blood. We will not place our own lives in 
jeopardy, by allowing her the power of executing her savage 
decrees. She has not yet repealed them. Woe to the nation 
which trusts her ! Nor is it for naught that the Jesuits, her 
most intelligent and faithful sons, have been banished again 
and again from even papal countries — the presence of men so 
unprincipled, so restless, so malignant, being proved by ex- 
perience to be utterly incompatible with the welfare of any 
state. Evangelical principles lead men as men, and Christians 
as Christians, to live together in love : the Church of Koine 
breathes out only threatening and slaughter against all but 
the agents and the devotees of popery. If such its fruits, 
what must be the system ? 

VII. The gospel, as it is found in the pages of the New 
Testament, is " the power of God unto salvation." Declaring 
that peace has been made with God, on behalf of man, by the 



POPERY INJURIOUS TO MAN. 13 

death of Christ, it beseeches sinners to be reconciled to God : 
to take with thankfulness the salvation which he freely prof- 
fers ; and, as the consequence, to be holy and happy. This 
good news received into the heart, produces what penance has 
never produced, deep hatred to sin, its entire abandonment; 
and all the fruits of a renewed and sanctified life. Myriads 
have been conducted, not to purgatory, but to paradise, by 
the blessed power of these holy doctrines. And the blessings 
which the gospel scatters by the way are incalculably vast and 
precious. It has promise of the life that now is. Evangelical 
truth has at last swept away idolatry, civilized and elevated 
man, in every part of the world to which it has had free 
access. Protestant evangelical principles have, by God's 
blessing, made England and the United States what they are, 
and are adapted to work no less good for other lands. But 
one of the most formidable obstacles to the diffusion of the 
gospel is popery. 

The French and Italians have seen the workings, not of 
Christianity, but of Romanism, and hence to a fearful extent 
they have become infidels. Yoltaire and Frederick the Great 
studied and despised popery — of Christianity they were pro- 
foundly ignorant. Their caustic satire eats into the very 
vitals of Roman assumption and imposture, but is powerless 
in regard to Christianity. Thousands, however, believe that 
it is true religion itself which lies dead by the power of reason 
and of wit. And myriads, by the reception of popery, are 
hardened against the truth. The progress of the gospel, and 
consequently of human elevation, purity, and happiness, is 
opposed in many lands by this foe of God and man. 

Brief as is this account of popery, it is hoped that it will 
prove sufficient for the purpose of leading every reader to 
stand fast in the principles of evangelical truth. The end of 
all things is at hand — the coming of the Lord draweth nigh. 
Each of us must give account of himself to God. Let us take 
heed that we approach his judgment-seat sprinkled with 
atoning blood, sanctified by the Holy Spirit, and so faithful 
in all things, that when he comes we may be found of him in 
peace, without spot and blameless. 



14 POPERY INJURIOUS TO MAN. 

TREACHERY AND CRUELTY OF ROMANISM. 

The Romish Church has decided that there is no faith to 
be kept with heretics : precisely that doctrine was established 
by the Council of Constance in 1414; and she has acted upon 
it in instances almost innumerable. Never was there a more 
flagrant Example of treachery than was exhibited in her treat- 
ment of that eminent Reformer, John Huss. Having been 
summoned to appear before the Council of Constance to answer 
to the charge of having deserted the Church of Rome, he 
obeyed the summons : though not without having received 
from the Emperor Sigismund a pledge of his protection till 
he should return to his own home. His enemies, however, 
by the most scandalous violation of public faith, imprisoned 
him, condemned him as a heretic, and burned him alive ; and 
that too even when the emperor interposed, and pleaded that 
his royal honor was pledged for his safety. The same horrible 
doctrine was practically recognized by Innocent IV., and the 
Council of Lyons, in deposing Frederick II., and absolving 
his subjects from their oath of allegiance : by Pius V., in per- 
forming a similar act in the case of Queen Elizabeth : by 
Clement VII., in compelling Charles V., in violation of his 
oath, to turn the whole race of the Moors in Spain over to the 
tortures of the Inquisition; and by Louis XIV., in the un- 
principled revocation of the edict of Nantes, against the faith 
of the most solemn treaties : the consequence of which was, 
that France was deluged with the blood of the Protestants. 
In these and innumerable other instances the Romish Church 
has not only prostituted her honor, but has most grossly per- 
jured herself, in the person of him whom she has recognized 
as her head ; and that, too, to gratify private resentments, or 
to sustain a corrupt and cruel priesthood. 

And this leads me to say that cruelty is joined to treachery 
in the whole economy and history of Romanism. No matter 
what amiable qualities a Romish bishop may possess, he is 
bound by his oath to be a persecutor; and if he does not per- 
secute heretics to the extent of his ability, he is a perjured 
man. Hear the oath which every bishop is obliged to take 
previous to his consecration : — " I swear that heretics, and 
schismatics, and rebels to our Lord, the Lord Pope, or his 
successor, I will, to the extent of my power, persecute and 



POPERY INJURIOUS TO MAN. 15 

beat down : So help me God, and the holy gospels of God." 
Now I venture to say that you may go through the history of 
the Romish Church, and you will find that, whatever may 
have been the fate of other oaths by which their ecclesiastics 
have bound themselves, this has generally been kept : at least 
so far as considerations of policy would warrant. 

The lighter kind of persecution which this Church has 
carried on has been by curses and excommunications. As a 
specimen of this, I will quote part of the form which was 
uttered by the pope against his manufacturer of alum, for 
eloping from his alum-works, and carrying the chemical secret 
to England : — " May God the Father curse him ! May God 
the Son curse him ! May the Holy Ghost curse him ! May 
the Holy Cross curse him ! May the Holy and eternal Virgin 
Mary curse him ! May Saint Michael curse him ! May John 
the Baptist curse him ! May Saint Peter, and Saint Paul, 
and Saint Andrew, and all the Apostles and disciples, curse 
him ! May all the martyrs and confessors curse him ! May 
all the saints, from the beginning of time to everlasting, curse 
him ! May he be cursed in the house and in the fields ! May 
he be cursed while living and dying ! May he be cursed in 
all the powers of his body within and without ! May he be 
cursed from the crown of his head to the sole of his feet ! 
May heaven and all the powers therein rise against him to 
damn him, unless he repent and make satisfaction V Such 
are some of the execrations with which His Holiness thought 
proper to pursue the man who had run off with the secret of 
making alum. If the offender could have been caught, how 
quickly would the dungeon or the rack have been made ready 
for him ! 

It had been well if the Romish Church had never carried 
forward her persecutions by means of any other weapons than 
the tongue and the pen ; but you need not be told that what 
I have already referred to is much the milder part of her 
agency. She has wielded the sword with most desolating 
effect. She has exhausted her ingenuity in inventing instru- 
ments of torture ; and, so far as she could, has laid the very 
elements under contribution to help forward her bloody work. 
Is there an individual who is ready to pronounce this state- 
ment too broad or too strong to consist with the simple verity ? 
Then, as a cure for his skepticism, let him read the history of 



16. POPERY INJURIOUS TO MAN. 

the Waldenses and the Albigenses, through a long succession 
of generations, and see how the blood of those inoffensive and 
excellent people flowed like a river from under the hand of 
Papal persecution. Let him cast an eye over the plains uf 
Languedoc, or the mountains of Bohemia, or the green fields 
of Spain, and see them covered with the dying and the dead: 
the fearful result of those fanatical and despenite conflicts fur 
which the Romish Church is solely responsible. Let him 
transport himself to Paris, amidst the horrors of the Saint 
Bartholomew massacre j and see how her streets are paved 
with corpses, and her palaces are deluged with blood, and 
every breeze that passes over her bears off ten thousand dying 
groans. Let him in imagination travel through Holland, 
while her sons are dying by tens of thousands in the massacre 
occasioned by the Duke of Alva; or through England, while 
the followers of Wycliffe are having a full cup of vengeance 
wrung out to them ; and I venture to predict that he will be 
prepared to respond to any statement which I have made, and 
even to say that the half has not been told him. 

No one can deny that Popery is injurious to man, in regard 
to all his interests, temporal and eternal. Nevertheless, as 
Protestants we must not indulge any feeling of revenge towards 
those who are unhappily identified with this antichristian 
system. We can scarcely endorse the prayer of Milton in his 
Sonnet on the Massacre in Piedmont, as it breathes the spirit 
of imprecation which savors more of England in the sixteenth 
century than of the United States in the middle of the nine- 
teenth : — 

Avenge, Lord, thy slaughter'd saints, whose bones 
Lie scattered on the Alpine mountains cold : 
Even them who kept thy truth so pure of old, 

When all our fathers worshipped stocks and stones, 

Forget not : in thy book record their groans 
Who were thy sheep, and in their ancient fold 
Slain by the bloody Piedmontese that rolled 

Mother with infant down the rocks. Their moans 
The vales redoubled to the hills, and they 

To Heaven. Their martyred blood and ashes sow 
O'er all the Italian fields where still doth sway 

The triple tyrant : that from these may grow 
A hundred fold, who, having learned thy way, 

Early may fly the Babylonian woe. 



Naihvllle, Tenn. : Published by E. Stevenson & F. A. Owen, for the M. E. Church, South. 



No. 38. 



INTOLERANT AND PERSECUTING 
SPIRIT OE POPERY. 



The intolerant spirit of Popery is not an incidental feature, 
but an inherent part of the system. It necessarily arises from 
the assumption of the infallibility of its decrees, and the uni- 
versality of its dominion: — "We say, define, and pronounce, 
that it is absolutely necessary to salvation for every man to be 
subject to the pope of Rome. The pope is Christ's vicar, 
St. Peter's successor, and hath the supreme power on earth 
over the whole Church/' (Concil. Trid.) "The Church 
of Rome is the mother and mistress of all churches ;" ( Con- 
di. Later, i.) "and that to believe her so to be, is necessary to 
salvation." (Bulla Pii IV) "As Grod is called universal 
Lord, because all things are under his dominion; so the 
Church of Rome is called catholic, or universal, because all 
churches are subject to her." (Pope Innocent III.') All 
persons are required to receive the doctrines she proposes; 
and without the belief of these she declares there is no sal- 
vation. "This is the true catholic faith, without which no 
man can be saved." (Bulla Pii IV) These are a few of 
the monstrous dogmas of the Papal See. On such arrogant 
assumptions has been reared that mighty fabric of " impiety, 
cruelty and imposture," which for several centuries darkened 
the horizon of civilized Europe ; and which, but for the glo- 
rious Reformation, would long ago have entombed every ves- 
tige of civil and religious liberty, and reduced to mental vas- 
salage the inhabitants of the fairest portion of the earth. 

In connection with this assumption of universal dominion, 
the Papal See has claimed, and professedly exercised, the at- 
tribute of infallibility. There has, indeed, (and this is most 
ludicrous,) been some difference of opinion as to the precise 
13* 



Z INTOLERANT AND PERSECUTING 

part in which this attribute is to be found : some having as- 
cribed it to a general council, and others to the pope. This 
difference of opinion is an ample refutation of the dogma. 
If infallibility were really possessed, it would be easy to deter- 
mine, by an infallible decision, where it was to be found. This at- 
tribute either is possessed by an individual, or it is not. If 
it is not to be^ found in an individual, no matter whether he 
be pope, cardinal, or member of a general council, it cannot 
have any existence at all. Will the mere congregating of a 
number of men invest them with an attribute of which as 
individuals they are not in possession? Would the collect- 
ing together a multitude of men, who as individuals were 
maniacs, render them as a body perfectly sane ? It is the 
veriest nonsense to ascribe infallibility to a council of men, 
and deny it to them as individuals. To add a pope to a 
general council, or a general council to the pope, for the 
purpose of obtaining an infallible head, is as preposterous as 
it would be to maintain that a combination of men, who indi- 
vidually are fools, will promulgate a decision which originates 
in absolute wisdom. 

Whatever difference of opinion may obtain among the 
Papists as to the seat of infallibility, it has invariably been 
considered practically to reside in the pope; and if he 
be "the head of the Church," he ought to be infallible. 
What fallible man, unless he were insane, would deliberately 
assume such a position ? It is maintained in the Papal 
Church, " that nothing is true except what the Pope approves, 
and every thing which he condemns is false/' " We can be- 
lieve nothing, unless we believe with a divine faith that the 
pope is the successor of St. Peter, and infallible." (L'icis 
Capsensis.) The great champion of the Papal Church. 1>«'1- 
larmine, says, " The pope is absolutely above the Catholic 
Church, and above a general council, so that he has no judge 
above him on earth." 

To these two arrogant dogmas of Popery, absolute infalli- 
bility, and the right of universal dominion, is to be ascribed 
that spirit of intolerance whieh is inherent in the Paji;il 
Church ; and so long as these dogmas are maintained, it is 
impossible for Popery to be otherwise than intolerant. In no 
country in which the Papacy is dominant, is there, nor can 
there consistently be, any toleration of doctrines at varianco 



SPIRIT OF POPERY. 3 

with those which are promulgated by an infallible head. To 
expect toleration from Popery is to expect " grapes from 
thorns" and " figs from thistles." To tolerate where there is 
the power to repress, would contradict all those principles on 
which the fabric is grounded ; and would apply an abandon- 
ment of the dogma of infallibility. In strict accordance with 
this principle, it has been the continuous and universal prac- 
tice of the Church of Rome, wherever she had or assumed 
to have the predominance, to interdict the exercise of pri- 
vate judgment, and to fulminate anathemas against those who 
had the presumption to dissent from her creed. 

That the slightest deviation from the Romish Church con- 
stitutes heresy, and consequent exposure to punishment, may 
be 'verified by an appeal to documentary evidence of ac- 
knowledged authority. To deny tradition as of equal author- 
ity with the Holy Scriptures as the rule of faith, is heresy. 
Whosoever knowingly contemns tradition, is declared to be ac- 
cursed. {Condi . Trid.) The exclusion from the canonical 
Scriptures of the Books of Esdras, Tobit, Judith, Wisdom, 
Ecclesiasticus, Baruch, the two Books of Maccabees, a new 
part of Esther and Daniel, is heresy; and those who are 
guilty of this crime "are accursed/' {Concil. Trid.) To 
deny that good works do not truly deserve eternal life, is heresy : 
"let such persons be accursed/' {Concil. Trid.) To refuse 
to believe the doctrines of purgatory, and the sacrifice of the 
mass for the dead, is heresy; and such persons "are ac- 
cursed." {Concil. Trid.) The refusal of that worship which 
is rendered to images and pictures, is heresy : " whosoever 
doth think otherwise is accursed." {Concil. Trid.) On the 
subject of the sacraments : — " Whosoever saith that there are 
more or fewer than seven instituted by Christ — namely, bap- 
tism, confirmation, eucharist, penance, extreme unction, orders, 
and matrimony ; or that any of the seven are not truly and 
properly sacraments, is accursed." {Concil. Trid.) The 
eucharist is declared to be a sacrament, wherein is truly, 
really, and substantially contained whole Christ, God-man, 
body and blood, bones and nerves, {Catech. Rom.,) soul and 
divinity, under the appearance of bread and wine. ( Concil. 
Trid.) Whosoever thinks it necessary to receive in both 
kinds, "is accursed." {Concil. Trid.) Whosoever denies 
that the sacrifice of the mass is truly a propitiatory sacrifice, 



4 INTOLERANT AND PERSECUTING 

and is available not only for the sins, punishments, and satisfy. 
tions of the living, but also for those of the souls in purgatory 
is accursed, ( Coned. Trid.,) and incapable of salvation. \Bulla 
Pii IV.) Whosoever holds it unlawful or idolatrous to wor- 
ship the consecrated host, with the same sovereign worship 
which is due only to God, is accursed. (Condi. Trul.) These 
are but a few of those proofs which might be adduced to 
establish the charge of intolerance against the Popish ( 'hurch. 
The evidence is collected, not from any individual authority, 
but from the decrees of a council, the authority of which will 
not be impugned by any consistent member of the ('hurch of 
Home. So long as the decrees of councils are unrepealed by 
the solemn and public decision of the Papal See, they are 
justly adducible as evidence establishing the charge of in- 
tolerance ; and to suppose, while their authority is acknow- 
ledged, that the Church of Home can be otherwise than in- 
tolerant, is a "strong delusion, and to believe a lie." (1 
Thess. ii. 11.) 

The intolerant decrees of popes and councils have not been 
allowed to slumber as a dead letter in the Papal statute-book, 
but have been zealously applied for the purpose of forming 
the principles and regulating the practice of men. To these 
decrees must be traced, as the stream to the fountain, tho>e 
numerous and cruel persecutions by which the Church of 
Eome has attempted to secure uniformity of faith : under 
which pretext so many hundreds of thousands of pious and 
inoffensive men have been literally butchered, until the Papil 
See, "the mother of harlots," has been actually "drunk with 
the blood of the saints, and with the blood of the witnesses 
of Jesus. " (Rev. xvii. 5, 6.) "There is no city under the 
sun," is the language of the Rev. J. Wesley, in his note on 
Revelation xviii. 24, "which has so clear a title to catholic 
blood-guiltiness as Rome. The guilt of the blood shed under 
the heathen emperors has not been removed under the popes, 
but hugely multiplied. Nor is Rome accountable only tor 
that which hath been shed in the city, but for that shed in all 
the earth. For at Rome, under the pope, as well as under 
the heathen emperors, were the bloody orders and edicts 
given; and wherever the blood of holy men was shed, there 
were the grand rejoicings for it. And what immense quan- 
tities of blood have been shed by her agents ! Charles IX., 



SPIRIT OF POPERY. 5 

of France, in his letter to Gregory XIII., boasts, that in and 
not long after the massacre of Paris, he had destroyed seventy 
thousand Huguenots. Some have computed that from the 
year 1518 to 1548, fifteen millions of Protestants have perished 
by the Inquisition. This may be overcharged ; but certainly 
the number of them in those thirty years, as well as since, is 
almost incredible. To these we may add innumerable martyrs 
in ancient, middle, and late ages, in Bohemia, Germany, Hol- 
land, France, England, Ireland, and many other parts of Eu- 
rope, Africa, and Asia." 

Nothwithstanding the evidence of history by which the 
Papal Church is convicted of having shed " the blood of the 
saints/' the advocates of Popery, with a bravery which is 
really astounding, but which is quite in harmony with the 
principles of the Jesuits, maintain " that religious persecu- 
tion was scarcely ever practiced in Christian countries, until 
it was introduced by Protestants at the period of the pre- 
tended Reformation." (Orthodox Journal.) The truth is, 
according to the unchangeable principles of Popery, the mur- 
dering of Protestants is not regarded as persecution, but a 
meritorious act. The Rhemish translators of the New Testa- 
ment, in their note on Revelation xvii. 6, " Drunken with 
the blood of the saints," say, "Protestants foolishly expound 
it of Rome, for that there they put heretics to death, and allow 
of their punishment IN OTHER COUNTRIES; but THEIR blood 
is not called the blood of saints, no more than the blood of 
thieves, man-killers, and other malefactors ; for the shedding 
of which, by order of justice, no commonwealth shall answer." 
This note speaks volumes ; and fully unveils that mystery of 
iniquity which is inherent in the Church of Rome. It is 
only necessary to regard Protestants as "thieves, man-killers, 
and malefactors," and then murder ceases to be murder, and 
becomes "the order of justice." Nor is this all. It has 
often been noticed, that in Protestant countries, where Papists 
are the minority, when they wish to acquire any particular 
privileges, they ask for them on the general principle of reli- 
gious liberty, a principle which the heads of their religion 
indignantly repudiate. This is explained in the same book. 
In the note on Matthew xiii. 29, 30, it is said " The good 
must tolerate the evil when it is so strong that it cannot be 
redressed without danger and disturbance to the whole Church, 



6 INTOLERANT AND PERSECUTING 

and commit the matter to God's judgment in the latter day. 
OTHERWISE, where ill m*n, be they heretics or other ma lr fac- 
tors, may be punished or suppressed without disturbance'and 
hazard of the good, they may, and ought, by public authority, 
either spiritual or temporal, to be chastised or executed." So 
in the note on Luke ix. 55, it is said, that when Christ re- 
buked James and John for wanting to call for fire from 
heaven, "not justice, nor all rigorous punishment of sinners 
is here forbidden, nor Elias's fact reprehended, nor the Church 
or Christian princes blamed for putting heretics to death ; 
but that none of these should be done for desire of our parti- 
cular revenge/' etc. Can such a system — a system of decep- 
tion and cruelty — be of God ? Is it not of the devil ? "Ye 
are of your father the devil, and your will is to do the desires 
of your father. He was a murderer from the beginning, and 
abode not in the truth; for there is no truth in him." (John 
viii. 44.) 

The folly and the falsehood of affirming that religious per- 
secution was not practiced till the Reformation, and that then 
it was introduced by Protestants, is quite in character with 
the unchangeable principles of Popery. Early in the twelfth 
century, a great number of persons in Lyons and the south 
of France perceived the idolatry and absurdity of the Romish 
worship. God, in his providence, about three hundred years 
prior to the Reformation, raised up Peter Waldo, a rich mer- 
chant of Lyons, who had the honor of being the first to give 
the word of God in any modern language of Europe. Pope 
Alexander III., having heard of his heretical proceedings, 
anathematized Waldo and his followers, and commanded the 
Archbishop of Lyons to proceed against them with the utmost 
rigor. The only crime with which the Waldenses were 
charged, was that of presuming to read and understand the 
word of God for themselves. Their very enemies bear testi- 
mony to their morality and purity of life. A Romish Inquisi- 
tor, who wrote against them, says, " These heretics are known 
by their manners and conversation ; for they are orderly and 
modest in their behavior. They are chaste, temperate, and 
sober." Claudius Seisselius, Archbishop of Turin, says, 
" that, their heresy excepted, they generally live a purer life 
than other Christians. In their morals and lives they are 
perfect, irreprehensible, and without reproach among men, 



SPIRIT OF POPERY. 7 

addicting themselves with all their might to the service of 
God." Lielententius, a Dominican, speaking of the Waldenses, 
says, " In morals and life they are good, true in words, unani- 
mous in brotherly love." Samuel de Cassini, a Franciscan 
friar, in his Victoria Trionfale, declares, " that all the errors 
of these Waldenses consisted in this, that they denied the 
Church of Rome to be the holy mother Church, and would not 
obey her traditions." Yet these moral and unblamable men, 
whose only crime consisted in denying the supreme authority of 
the Papal See, and reading and circulating the Holy Scriptures, 
were the objects of the most malignant and unceasing perse- 
cutions ; and had to endure a " great fight of afflictions." 
The cruelties which were inflicted on the Waldenses were not 
by the authority of individual bishops, but on the authority 
and by the command of the Pope, as the head of the Church. 
In 1181, Pope Lucius III. issued a decree against heretics, 
which commences in the following manner : — " To abolish the 
malignity of divers heresies which have lately sprung up in 
most parts of the world : more particularly we declare all 
Catharists, Pastorines, and those who call themselves the Poor 
of Lyons, to be under a perpetual anathema." In a subse- 
quent decree the Pope says, " We exhort you that you would 
endeavor to destroy the wicked heresy of the Albigenses, and 
do this with more rigor than you would towards the Saracens 
themselves : persecute them with a strong hand : deprive them 
of their lands and possessions : banish them, and put Catho- 
lics in their room." Such were the results of their cruel and 
bloody decrees, that it has been computed that, by fire and 
sword, the armies employed by Pope Innocent III., about two 
hundred thousand were murdered in the short space of a few 
months ! Pope Innocent VIII., about thirty years prior to 
the Reformation, issued a Bull to the Archbishop of Cremona, 
in which he required him to "extirpate the Waldenses, and 
tread them under foot as venomous adders, bestowing all care 
towards so holy and so necessary an extermination of the same 
heretics ;" and he urges him to engage in so holy and merito- 
rious a work, that "he may not only obtain the crown of 
glory which is bestowed as a reward to those that prosecute 
pious causes, but that he might insure the approbation of the 
Pope and the apostolic see." (Jones's Hist. Wald.) But 
notwithstanding such irrefragable evidence, Papists have the 



o INTOLERANT AND PERSECUTING 

hardihood to affirm that they do not persecute heretics ! And 
what is still more surprising, there are some Protestants so 
simple as to believe them ! 

The persecution of men whose conscience cannot comply 
with the doctrine and worship of the Papal Church, is not 
only permitted as what may be done, but commanded as what 
ought to be done; and enforced by the severest penalties, and 
encouraged by the greatest privileges. " We, the holy Council, 
(of Toledo, Can. 3,) promulge this sentence or decree, pleas- 
ing to God, That whosoever hereafter shall succeed to the 
kingdom, shall not mount the throne till he has sworn, among 
other oaths, to permit no man to live in his kingdom who is 
not a Catholic. And if, after he has taken the reins of govern- 
ment, he shall violate his promise, let him be anathema mara- 
natha in the sight of the eternal God, and become fuel of the 
eternal fire." The Council of Lateran, under Pope Innocent 
III., say, "We excommunicate and anathematize all heresy, 
condemning all heretics, by what name soever they are called. 
These being condemned, must be left to the secular power to 
be punished. But if any temporal lord should neglect his 
duty, it should be signified to the Pope, that he might from 
that time pronounce the subjects absolved from their allegiance 
to him, and expose his territories to be seized on by the Catholics, 
who, expelling heretics, shall possess them without contradic- 
tion." In the same chapter, the privileges granted to those 
who extirpate heretics are stated : u But Catholics, who, hav- 
ing taken the badge of the cross, shall set themselves to extir- 
pate heretics, shall enjoy the same indulgences, and be forti- 
fied with the same privileges, as are granted to those who go 
to the recovery of the Holy Land." Such are the penalties 
to be inflicted on those who do not extirpate heretics! and 
such are the rewards promised to those who engage in this 
work of the devil ! 

The statement of Mr. Wesley is a sober and solemn truth : 
11 The guilt of blood shed under the heathen emperors has 
not been removed under the popes, but hugely multiplied." 
In addition to the two hundred thousand Waldenscs wlu» were 
destroyed in two months, Pope Julius II. is said to have oc- 
casioned the slaughter of two hundred thousand Christians in 
seven years. Perionius states, that in France alone, in the 
o-reat persecution against the Waldenses, there were murdered 



SPtftIT OF POPERY. 9 

no less than one million. During the first forty years that 
the Jesuits had an existence, there were about nine hundred 
thousand of orthodox Christians cruelly murdered. In less 
than thirty years, the holy Inquisition consumed about one 
hundred and fifty thousand with all manner of cruelty. These 
indisputable facts led Joseph Mede to give it as his opinion, 
"that the destruction made upon the Church by the Papists 
was equal to that of the first ten Pagan persecutions. " The 
persecutions of the Protestants in England in the reign of 
Mary are indelibly traced in history. In the massacre of 
Paris, which subsequently extended over the kingdom, it is 
computed, according to Bishop Burnet, that one hundred 
thousand Protestants perished. The massacre of Protestants 
m Ireland, during the rebellion, which began in 1641, in the 
reign of Charles I., is an indelible stain upon Popery, and 
demonstrates the cruelty of that detestable system. "After 
rapacity had fully exerted itself, cruelty, and that the most 
barbarous that ever in any nation was known or heard of, 
began its operations. No age, no sex, no condition, was 
spared. The wife weeping for her butchered husband, and 
embracing her helpless children, was pierced with them, and 
perished by the same stroke. All the tortures which wanton 
cruelty could devise : all the lingering pains of body, and anguish 
of mind, the agonies of despair, could not satiate revenge excited 
without injury, and cruelty derived from no cause. To enter into 
particulars would shock the least delicate humanity : such 
enormities, though attested by undoubted evidence, would ap- 
pear almost incredible. The sacred name of religion sounded 
on every side, not to stop the hands of these murderers, but 
to enforce their blows, and to steel their hearts against every 
movement of human or social sympathy. The heretics were 
marked out by the priests for the slaughter ; and, of all actions, 
to rid the world of these declared enemies to Catholic faith 
and piety was represented as the most meritorious in its 
Qature. While death finished the sufferings of each victim, 
the bigoted assassins, with joy and exultation, still echoed in 
his expiring ears that these agonies were but the commence- 
ment of torments infinite and eternal/' {Hume.) That this 
picture of Popish cruelty is not too highly colored, nor too 
deeply shaded, is amply proved by the writings of Temple, of 
Clarendon, and of other contemporary historians. 



Oil IS 



1® INTOLERANT AND PERSECUTING 

The revocation of the edict of Nantes, in 1685, by L JUI . 
XIV., who was instigated to that act of unparalleled perfidy 
by the bishops and Jesuits, is a fact which can never be obli- 
terated from the pages of history, and stamps with an eternal 
brand the cruel character of that Church by the adherents 
of which such atrocious crimes were perpetrated. There is one 
prominent feature in this iniquitous transaction which deserves 
especial attention— viz., that the most solemn oaths, and the mo t 
sacred treaties, are never looked upon by the Papal Church 
and its infallible pontiffs as obligatory, when the violation of 
them may contribute to advance their interests or accomplish 
their objects. For nearly a century Protestantism had been 
legally recognized in France, and its professors protected by 
the edict of Nantes, for which they were indebted to Henry 
IV By the revocation of this edict, the Protestants were re- 
quired, under pain of military execution, to conform to the 
Church of Rome. On this occasion the celebrated Bossuet, 
Bishop of Meaux, published his pastoral letter, in which, 
when addressing the " new Catholics," or the recent converts, 
who had been compelled at the point of the bayonet to re- 
nounce Protestantism, he says, " I do not marvel, my dearest 
brethren, that you are returned in troops and with so much 
ease to the Church where your ancestors have served. Not 
one of you hath suffered violence, either in his person or 
goods. So far have you been from suffering torments, that 
you have not so much as heard them mentioned. I hear 
other bishops say the same. You are returned peaceably to 
us : you know it." Can Popish effrontery exceed this total 
disregard of truth which was displayed by Bossuet ? In 
reply to the pastoral letter, M. Jurieu, in his pastoral letter, 
says, "Set him matter of fact against this pretended facility, 
and assure him that for four months' time there have been 
assemblies almost every day in the Cevennes and in the ad- 
jacent parts, for the offering up prayers and supplications to 
Crod — sometimes in woods, at other times in eaves, and 
rocks, and dens of the earth. The dragoons, which almost 
always surprise them, put them to the sword, according to 
their instructions : they kill, and hang, and drag them to 
prisons. In the month of June last, near the end thereof, 
having surprised an assembly near Nismes, they killed many 
of them on the place, and four they hung on the trees. The 



SPIRIT OF POPERY. 11 

hangmen withdrew, supposing that they would have no great 
inclination to return again to that place. But two hours after 
there was another assembly in the same place on the dead 
bodies, and in the view of the carcasses that hung on the trees 
of the mountains. There is not a week passes without like 
assemblies and like massacres/' But notwithstanding these 
palpable facts, Bossuet, the wily Jesuit, though one of the 
most candid Popish writers, had the assurance to address the 
" new Catholics/ ' and say, " So far have you been from suf- 
fering torments, that you have not so much as heard them 
mentioned I" In a private letter written at this period by 
Bossuet, he says, " Tell me in what texts of Scripture heretics 
and schismatics are excepted from the number of those male- 
factors against which St. Paul says Grod hath armed kings 
and princes. And although you will not permit Christian 
princes to take vengeance of such great crimes because 
they are injurious to God, can they not take vengeance on 
them because they cause trouble and sedition in states V y 
(Juried s Pastoral Letters.) What a perfect harmony be- 
tween the doctrine of Bossuet and that of the Bhemish trans- 
lators ! " Their blood is not called the blood of saints, no 
more than the blood of thieves, man-killers, and other male- 
factors, for the shedding of which by the order of justice no 
commonwealth shall answer." It was in this spirit that the 
Jesuits contrived to inflict the cruelties of Thorn, under the 
pretext of punishing riot. The Cardinal Primate of Poland 
says, "The sacred execution at Thorn, against the profaners 
of holy things, ought never to be forgotten/' It was his wish 
that this " sacred execution" should be perpetually remem- 
bered. " He seems to look back upon the beheadings, and 
choppings, and manglings, and dreadful whippings, with plea- 
sure. So the wolf licks his jaws after a bloody meal." 

It would be easy to multiply facts almost ad infinitum in 
confirmation of the intolerant and persecuting spirit of the 
Church of Rome. Those which have been adduced are not 
the acts of individuals, but of the Church : they are there- 
fore justly chargeable to the inherent and unchangeable spirit 
of Popery, which is a spirit of intolerance. Cruelty is the 
genius of that professedly religious system. This spirit is 
found in almost every decree of councils, every bull of the 
popes, and every act of the Church. So long as the Papacy 



12 INTOLERANT AND PERSECUTING SPIRIT OF POPERY. 

assumes the attribute of infallibility, it is incapable of amend- 
ment. Can those principles be disowned which are the dic- 
tates of the Holy Ghost? Can those decrees and canons 
which were framed by infallible councils, be abandoned with- 
out surrendering the attribute of infallibility ? Can there be 
any amendment when it would involve the inevitable destruc- 
tion of the whole fabric to admit the possibility of error? 
Infallibility in error ? Impossible. 



TENDENCY OF ROMANISM. 

"What," says John "Wesley, "has a more natural tendency 
to destroy the love of Grod in the heart than idolatry ? But 
so does a considerable part of the avowed doctrine of the 
Church of Rome. The doctrine of the Romish Church 

has a tendency to hinder, if not destroy, the love of our 
neighbor. The same doctrine must greatly indispose 

us for showing them the justice which is due to all men. 
Its natural tendency to destroy mercy is equally glaring and 
^undeniable. What terrible proofs of this do we see in the 
execrable crusades against the Albigenses ! in those horrible 
wars in the Holy Land, where so many rivers of blood were 
poured out ! in the millions that have been butchered in 
Europe through its influence, since the beginning of the Re- 
formation — in the open field, in prisons, on the scaffold, on the 
gibbet, at the stake ! 

" Lastly, the doctrine of the Church of Rome has a ten- 
dency to destroy truth from off the earth. What can more 
directly tend to this, what can more incite her own members 
to all lying and falsehood, than that doctrine, 'that no faith 
is to be kept with heretics V Can I believe one word that a 
man says who espouses this principle ? It has indeed been 
affirmed, that the Church of Rome has renounced this doc- 
trine ; but when, or where ? By what public or authentic act, 
notified to all the worl& ? The ever-renowned Council of ( Y>n- 
stance (an assembly never to be paralleled, either among Turks 
or Pagans, for regard to justice, mercy, and truth !) publicly 
and openly avowed this principle; but when and where was 
it publicly disavowed ? Till this be done in the face of the sun, 
this doctrine must stand before all mankind as an avowed 
principle of the Romish Church." 



No. 39. 



PROTESTANT CHRISTIANITY AND 

ROMANISM CONTRASTED. 



IN RESPECT TO THEIR 



AGREEMENT WITH SCRIPTURE, 



1. Romanism denies, Protestant Christianity affirms, that 
the Holy Scriptures are a complete rule of faith, independently 
of oral traditions. 

The decree of the Council of Trent on this subject is in 
these words : — "All saving truth is not contained in the holy 
Scripture, but partly in the Scripture, and partly in unwritten 
traditions ; which whosoever doth not receive, with like piety 
and reverence as he doth the Scriptures, is accursed/' 

Hear the Apostle Paul, and see which side of the question 
has the sanction of his authority. In writing to Timothy, a 
young minister, who it was exceedingly desirable should be 
led into all truth on this subject, he declares that "the holy 
Scriptures are able to make us wise unto salvation;" and again, 
that "all Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is 
profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction 
in righteousness, that the man of God may be perfect, thorough- 
ly furnished unto all good works." On these passages it 
may be remarked, that if the " Scriptures are able to make 
men wise unto salvation/' there can be no occasion for un- 
written traditions; and that if the man of God can be so 
instructed out of the Scriptures as to be " perfect, thoroughly 
furnished unto all good works," they must contain every doc- 
trine and precept which God in his wisdom has been pleased 
to reveal for the edification of the body of Christ, or the con- 
version of the world. The prophet Isaiah virtually excludes 
every thing else than the Holy Scriptures as a rule of faith. 



& PROTESTANT CHRISTIANITY AND 

when he says, "To the law and to the testimony : if they 
speak^ not according to this word, it is because there is no 
light in them." The wise man, in the book of Proverbs, says, 
" Every word of God is pure : add thou not unto his words, 
lest he reprove thee, and thou be found a liar." And, finally, 
John, in the book of the Revelation, declares, " I testify unto 
every man that heareth the words of the prophecy of this 
book, If any man shall add unto them, God shall add unto 
him the plagues that are written in this book." 

2. Romanism prohibits the reading of the Scriptures by the 
common people : Protestant Christianity extends this privilege 
to all. 

In the fourth rule of the "Index of Prohibited Books," it 
is thus decreed : " Inasmuch as it is manifest from experience, 
that if the holy Bible, translated into the vulgar tongue, be 
indiscriminately allowed to every one, the temerity of man will 
cause more evil than good to arise from it, it is on this point 
referred to the judgment of the bishops or inquisitors, who 
may, by the advice of the priest or confessor, permit the read- 
ing of the Bible, translated into the vulgar tongue by Catholic 
authors, to those persons whose faith and piety they apprehend 
will be augmented, and not injured, by it; and this permission 
they must have in writing. But if any one shall have the 
presumption to read or possess it without such written per- 
mission, he shall not receive absolution until he have first 
delivered up such Bible to the Ordinary. Booksellers who 
shall sell or otherwise dispose of Bibles in the vulgar tongue 
to any person not having such permission, shall forfeit the 
value of the books, to be applied by the bishop to some pious 
use, and shall be subjected to such other penalties as the 
bishop shall judge proper. But regulars shall neither read 
nor purchase such Bibles, without a special license from their 
superiors." In perfect accordance with this decree, Leo X1L, 
in a circular letter, dated May 3d, 1824, and addressed to all 
Patriarchs, Primates, Archbishops, and Bishops, holds the 
following language : — " We also, venerable brethren, conform- 
ably to our apostolical duty, exhort you diligently to occupy 
yourselves by all means to turn away your flock from these 
deadly pastures." Gregory XVI. and Pius IX. use similar 
language. And what do you imagine these " deadly pastures" 
are ? Why, nothing less than the Bible, which we Protestants 



ROMANIbM CONTRASTED. 3 

use and circulate, and which the arrogant pontiff had just 
before termed " a gospel of the devil !" 

Attend now to what the Scripture saith on this subject, and 
see whether it is most in accordance with the doctrine of the 
Romanists or of the Protestants. " Search the Scriptures," 
is the direct command of Jesus Christ : a command which, 
from its very nature, as well as from the circumstances in 
which it was delivered, is equally binding upon all men. Paul, 
in writing to the Thessalonians, charges them that his " epistle 
be read to all the holy brethren." In his epistles to the 
Romans, the Corinthians, the Galatians, and the Ephesians, 
he distinctly recognizes the fact that he is addressing, not the 
officers of the churches only, but " all that call on the name 
of the Lord Jesus Christ." James addresses his epistle "to 
the twelve tribes that are scattered abroad :" Peter his first 
epistle " to the strangers scattered throughout Pontus, Gala- 
tia, Cappadocia, Asia, and Bithynia;" and his second epistle 
"to all that have obtained like precious faith with us." 
Now, I ask, what stronger evidence the apostle could have 
given that he designed these epistles to be read by all Chris- 
tians indiscriminately, than is to be found in the fact that they 
were addressed to all ? And how comes it to pass that the 
Bereans were commended, by apostolic authority, for the 
diligent searching of the Scriptures, if, after all, it is a sin 
to search them, unless by the special permission of an in- 
quisitor ? 

3. Romanism enjoins the worship of saints and images : 
Protestant Christianity maintains that God is the only proper 
object of religious worship. 

In the creed of Pope Pius IV it is thus written : "I also 
believe that the saints who reign with Christ are to be wor- 
shipped and prayed to ; and that their relics are to be vene- 
rated." And again, " I most firmly assert that the images of 
Christ, and of the Mother of God, who was always a virgin, 
are to be had and retained, and that due honor and worship 
is to be given to them." And the Council of Trent declares 
that " it is lawful to represent God and the Holy Trinity by 
images; and that the images and relics of Christ and the 
saints are to be duly honored, venerated, or worshipped ; and 
that in this veneration or worship those are venerated whie^i 
are represented by them." 



4 PROTESTANT CHRISTIANITY AND 

But what saith the Scripture in respect to the object of 
worship? It saith, "Thou shalt worship the Lord thy Hod, 
and Him only shalt thou serve." It saith further, "Thou 
shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness 
of any thing that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth 
beneath, or that is in the water under the earth. Thou shalt 
not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them." And God 
says by his servant to the people of Israel, " Take ye there- 
fore heed unto yourselves, (for ye saw no manner of similitude 
on the day that the Lord spake unto you in Horeb out of the 
midst of the fire,) lest ye corrupt yourselves, and make you 
a graven image, the similitude of any figure, the likeness of 
male or female." The whole tenor of Scripture on this sub- 
ject is in full accordance with these passages : judge, then, 
whether the doctrine of the Romanists or of the Protestants 
is the doctrine of the Bible. 

4. Romanism prescribes the celebration of religious worship 
in a language which is unintelligible to the people : Protestant 
Christianity requires that divine service be performed in a 
language which the people can understand. 

The Council of Trent, professedly acting under the guidance 
of the Holy Ghost, has not only decreed that mass shall be 
celebrated, and many other acts of religious worship performed, 
in Latin, but has denounced an anathema upon those who 
presume to maintain a different opinion. 

But let Paul be heard on this subject, that we may see into 
which scale the weight of his testimony falls. " He that 
speaketh in an unknown tongue," saith the apostle, "speaketh 
not unto men, but unto Grod ; for no man unclerstandeth him." 
And again, " If I come unto you speaking with tongues, what 
shall I profit you, except I shall speak to you either by reve- 
lation, or by knowledge, or by prophesying, or by doetriue? 
For if I pray in an unknown tongue, my ^pirit prayeth, but 
my understanding is unfruitful. Else when thou shalt bless 
with the spirit, how shall he that occupieth the room of the 
unlearned say Amen, at thy giving of thanks, seeing he un- 
derstandeth not what thou sayest ? In the church I had 
rather speak five words with my understanding, that by my 
voice I might teach others also, than ten thousand words iii 
an unknown tongue." This is the substance of all that the 
Scripture hath said on this subject ; and who will venture te 



ROMANISM CONTRASTED. 5 

say that there is any thing in it that even seems to favor, nay, 
that does not directly oppose, the doctrine of the Romanists ? 

5. Romanism virtually denies the completeness of Christ's 
atonement, by daily renewing his sacrifice in the celebration 
of the mass : Protestant Christianity recognizes the perfection 
of Christ's sacrifice. 

If the standards of the different branches of the Reformed 
Church be appealed to, we unquestionably arrive at the con- 
clusion that the doctrine of the atoning sacrifice of Christ, 
and of the perfection of that sacrifice, constitutes an essential 
article of Christianity, as it is held by the great mass of Pro- 
testants. 

The doctrine which the Romish Church holds on this sub- 
ject is thus expressed in the creed of Pius IV : "I believe 
that in the mass is offered to God a true, proper, and propi- 
tiatory sacrifice, for the quick," or living, "and dead." And 
the Council of Trent has decreed, that " if any one say that 
in the mass there is not a true and proper sacrifice offered unto 
Cod ; or that to be offered is nothing else but for Christ to be 
given to us to eat; let him be anathema." 

I hardly heed remind you that a large part of the Sacred 
Scriptures relates to the point now under consideration ; and 
as there is entire harmony in all that they contain on the 
subject, it may suffice to quote two or three passages. " If 
any man sin," saith the Apostle John, " we have an Advocate 
with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous ; and he is the 
propitiation for our sins ; and not for ours only, but also for 
the sins of the whole world." Paul, in writing to the He- 
brews, says, " Christ being come, a High-Priest of good 
things to come, he entered in once into the holy 

place, having obtained eternal redemption for us." Again, 
"Once in the end of the world hath he appeared to put 
away sin by the sacrifice of himself." And again, " By one 
offering he hath perfected for ever them that are sanctified." 
Need I ask whether these Scripture quotations can even be 
tortured into an accordance with the doctrine of the Roman 
ists? 

6. Romanism maintains that there are seven sacraments : 
Protestant Christianity, that there are but two. 

In the creed of Pius IV it is thus written : " There are 
truly and properly seven sacraments of the new law, instituted 
14 



6 PROTESTANT CHRISTIANITY AND 

by our Lord Jesus Christ, and are necessary to the salvation 
of mankind ; (although all the sacraments are not necessary 
to every person ;) namely, Baptism, Confirmation, the Lord's 
Supper, Penance, Extreme Unction, Orders, and Matrimony;" 
and the Council of Trent denounces a curse against any who 
say that these " were not all instituted by Christ, or that there 
are more or fewer than seven, or that any of the seven is not 
truly and properly a sacrament." 

Now you may search the New Testament through, and you 
will find no allusion to any other sacraments than Baptism 
and the Lord's Supper. When our Lord commissioned his 
disciples previous to his ascension, he said, " Go ye therefore, 
and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the 
Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost." And when 
he had met them for the last celebration of the Passover pre- 
vious to his death, the history informs us that " he took bread, 
and gave thanks, and brake it, and gave it unto them, saying, 
This is my body which is given for you : this do in remem- 
brance of me. Likewise also the cup after Supper, saying, 
This cup is the New Testament in my blood, which is shed 
for you." Both these sacraments — Baptism and the Lord's 
Supper — Protestant Christianity acknowledges : in respect to 
the other five the Bible is entirely silent. 



PROTESTANT EPIGRAMS. 

I. Refusal of the Sacramental Cup. 

"Drink of this cup, drink all," the Saviour cries. 

"None of this cup shall drink," the Pope replies; 
Yet strangely deems the consecrated wine 
The blood itself — no mere memorial sign : 
Forbids the blood that on the cross was spilt. 
The precious blood that cleanses from all guilt. 
The wafer sole is Rome's permitted food : 
'Tis Christ's own body, but without his blood ! 

II. Public Prayers in Latin. 
" Better five words in vulgar language utter'd, 
Than twice five thousand in a strange tongue mutter'd :" 
So Paul affirms. How different an opinion 
Is entertain'd in Papal Rome's dominion! 
Her public worship (vesper, noon, or matin, 
Pater or Ave) all proceeds in Latin. 



ROMANISM CONTRASTED. 7 

III. Adoration of the Virgin. 

Rome worships Mary, mother of our Lord : 
Her Lord pronounces all who keep His word 
More than his mother blest. Then how can they 
Who Him their Lord profess, to Mary pray ? 
woman ! what should sinners do with thee — 
Thyself a sinner ? and thy Saviour He 
To whom all sinners for salvation flee ! 

IV. Prohibition of Scripture-reading. 

" Search well the Scriptures, that ye well may know, 
Like wise Bereans, if these things are so : 
Let all that hear search daily." Rome says, "No : 
Th' unlearned wrest the Scriptures to their fall : 
We bar those pages from the use of all. 
Men spy not, while the Scriptures are suppress'd, 
How to our purpose Heaven's own word we wrest!" 

As an illustration of the last epigram, take the following : — ■ 
A priest, in a certain parish in Ireland, called upon his people 
to oppose a Protestant teacher ; for that he had that infernal 
machine, the Irish Bible, at work. "It has had the next 
parish in a blaze, and the flame has entered ours ; but I will 
extinguish it." For this end he went to the teacher's house. 
On entering, he saw the Irish Bible and some Testaments, 
and, laying hold on them, he deliberately pulled out the fire, 
and burned them to ashes. The teacher's aged mother, who, 
being entirely unacquainted with English, had listened with 
delight to her son reading the Irish Bible, when she beheld 
it burning in the fire, burst into tears, and, in the agony of 
grief, uttered in the Irish language the following natural and 
mournful exclamation — still more impressive in the language 
in which it was spoken : — "O G-od ! O Grod ! now is burned 
the book of books, the father of all good stories. There were 
in it stories from heaven, stories from angels, — yes ! and 
stories of Jesus : stories of his apostles and saints ; and amidst 
all was the dreadful — but, the joyful for sinners — the story 
of the crucifying Friday ! 0, it's burnt, it's burnt ! — the book 
of my soul, the book of my heart, the book of my Saviour !" 



5 PROTESTANT CHRISTIANITY, ETC. 

PROTESTANTISM BEFORE THE REFORMATION. 

m A person, says Dr. Edgar, being asked where Protestant- 
ism was before the Reformation, replied by asking, in turn 
where the inquirer's face was that morning before it was 
washed ? The reply was just. Dirt could constitute no part 
of the human countenance ; and washing, which would remove 
the filth, could neither change the lineaments of the human 
visage nor destroy its identity. The features by the cleansing 
application, instead of alteration, would only resume their 
natural appearance. The superstition of Romanism, in like 
manner, formed no part of Christianity ; and the Reformation, 
which expunged the filth of adulteration, neither new-mo- 
delled the form nor curtailed the substance of the native and 
genuine system. The pollutions of many ages, indeed, were 
dismissed; but the primitive constitution remained. The 
heterogeneous and foreign accretions, which might be con- 
founded but not amalgamated with the primary elements, were 
exploded ; and deformity and misrepresentation gave place to 
simplicity and truth. 

Popery may be compared to a field of wheat overrun with 
weeds. The weeds, in this case, are only obnoxious intruders, 
which injure the useful grain. The wheat may remain and 
advance to maturity with accelerated vegetation, when the 
weeds, which impede its growth, are eradicated. The super- 
stition of Romanism, in the same manner, like an exotic and 
ruining weed, deformed the gospel, and. counteracted its 
utility. The Reformers, therefore, zealous for the honor of 
religion and truth, and actuated with the love of God and 
man, proceeded with skill and resolution to separate Popish 
inventions from divine revelation, and exhibited the latter to 
the admiring world in all its striking attraction and sym- 
metry. 



Nashville, Tenn. : Published by E. Stevenson & F. A. Owen, for the M. K. Church, South. 



No. 40. 



THE HISTORY OF MARY, 

AN IRISH PEASANT. 



The regard due to the feelings of those who are the subjects 
of public notice, induces the writer of this little narrative to 
conceal the name and abode of the person here described. 
Suffice it to state that she resided, in the year 1816, in the 
south of Ireland ; and that whatever is here said concerning 
her is the result of accurate attention to the account given by 
herself, and to those circumstances by which her represent- 
ation might be either confirmed or invalidated. Mary, when 
very young, was deprived of the protection of her parents, 
by the death of one and the removal of the other. 

In this destitute state she was noticed by a near relation, 
to whose house she was taken. Here her temporal wants 
were supplied, and an opportunity for learning to read was 
afforded her, which she readily improved; but neither the 
circumstances, education, nor ideas of those with whom she 
was situated were favorable to her acquiring the knowledge 
of one useful subject, much less of the glorious gospel. As 
all her family belonged to the Roman Catholic Church, Mary, 
from early custom, professed its doctrines and engaged in its 
ceremonies ; but her mind was never led to any serious inqui- 
ries respecting the truth of what she believed, or the benefits 
which she expected to derive from her stated devotions. 
Sunk in the insensibility of a nature dead in trespasses and 
sins, she was regardless of the connection between religion 
and its advantages. She cared for none of these things : she 
was remiss even in what she believed to be her duty, thought- 
lessly yielding to the influence of every pas-sing temptation. 
Her temper was vehement, and she was passionately attached 
to the reading of novels. She would nastily despatch her 



* THE HISTORY OF MARY. 

appointed business in order to gratify this propensity : often 
making her escape to a retired corner of a field, in order 
to dwell in the wild regions of fancy, undisturbed by the 
intrusion of any object which would serve to remind her of 
the dull realities of life. In a mind thus occupied, it may 
easily be conceived that vain, erroneous, and destructive ideas 
predominated. Nor did her favorite pleasure lose its charms 
by familiarity, for she continued to indulge herself with it 
some time after she was married, seeking solace from domestic 
cares in the perusal of a novel, while her infant lay asleep in 
her arms. 

Having been seized with a fever, and believing her end to 
be approaching, she called for a devotional work, entitled, 
" Think well on't ;" and after reading a few pages felt her 
mind composed and her conscience satisfied : believing that 
she was now sufficiently prepared to die. Through mercy she 
was restored to health, but insensibility to her danger ren- 
dered her regardless of this further respite, which was, there- 
fore, totally unimproved. Thus she continued for some years, 
when one day, her child being asleep in her arms, she looked 
around to see if there was a novel within her reach; but 
being disappointed, she resolved to pass away the time with 
any book that lay near her. On opening the book which she 
could procure with least difficulty, she found it to be the very 
one which she had read during her illness, then purposely 
resorted to as the means of speaking peace to her soul ; now, 
through a gracious dispensation of Providence, rendered 
instrumental in producing a contrary effect. Though the 
particular purport of this book is to set forth and recommend 
the peculiar doctrines of the Koman Catholic Church, yet it 
contains many serious admonitions and solemn warnings re- 
specting the importance of eternal things. She had not read 
far before she met with the following passage from Deut. 
xxxii. 29, " that they were wise : that they understood this : 
that they would consider their latter end !" To which was 
added, " Multitudes never consider for what end they come into 
the world, and for what end they leave it ; and are never roused 
from this careless state till they awake in the flames of hell." 
The whole passage seemed as if directed to herself. Agi- 
tated and distressed, she dropped the book, and, clasping 
her hands together, exclaimed, " Lord, I am one of these 



THE HISTORY OF MARY. 3 

careless ones I" The importance of eternity rushed upon her 
mind with such force, that anxiety for the salvation of her 
immortal soul now occupied her sole attention, and led her 
bitterly to reproach herself for being hitherto unmindful of 
what so nearly concerned her. She saw that her past life 
presented to her view nothing but the commission of various 
sins, and the omission of various duties. How, therefore, so 
to atone for the past, and to provide for the future, as to 
secure the favor of Grod and eternal life, became the subject 
of her serious inquiry. Ignorant of the demands of God's 
law, and of her own insufficiency and un worthiness, she ima- 
gined that her regrets, lamentations, and endeavors to reform, 
would restore her to the Divine favor ; and, accordingly, she 
commenced her new plan of life. Among past omissions of 
duty, a disregard to the ceremonies of her religion was enu- 
merated : she therefore resolved regularly to attend on 
masses, confessions, etc. : was strict in fastings and penances, 
and watched continually over her prevailing propensities. 
Some experience of their power, in threatening to defy her 
most rigorous exertions, led her to apprehend the failure of her 
attempts ; and she resolved to try the influence of fear, by pun- 
ishing herself for any flagrant transgression. To such lengths 
did the ardor of her mind conduct her in this mode of pro- 
ceeding, that at one time, after recovering from a violent pas- 
sion, she thrust her finger into the fire. 

Thus she proceeded with fear and trembling, proving that 
the service in which she was now engaged was perfect bond- 
age, and not perfect freedom. To peace, poor Mary was still 
a total stranger. Peace with Grod, the result of forgiveness, 
she had not sought through the sufferings and intercession of 
Jesus Christ ; and even peace with herself was but ill secured, 
while the dispositions she sought to suppress, again and again 
claimed the victory. She was also subject to frequent inter- 
ruptions while performing her prescribed task of devotions. 
Having resolved to repeat what is called by her Church " The 
Thirty Days' Prayer/' (a repetition of the same prayer for 
such a number of days, in regular succession, to which were 
attached many important privileges,) the book in which it 
was contained would often be mislaid, when she had to com- 
mence the reckoning over again. She was scarcely ever able 
to go through the whole of this undertaking. This she now 



4 THE HISTORY OF MARY. 

ascribes to the providence of God, who would not suffer hei 
to persevere in any thing which was calculated to pacify her 
deluded conscience. 

^ During this state of fear, anxiety, and distress, she was one 
night engaged at her devotions, when one of her children 
crying, without her hearing him, her husband called her to 
attend to his wants. Her temper unsubdued by her exercises, 
and incensed at being interrupted in what she considered as 
one of her meritorious acts, she arose from her knees in a 
violent passion, and cursed her husband for having disturbed 
her. In one instant the airy fabric of Mary's fancied right- 
eousness was levelled to the ground. Attaching to the breach 
of different commandments, and to transgressions under 
different circumstances, various degrees of guilt, her present 
offence seemed to exceed all possibility of forgiveness. This, 
with her discouragement at her own weakness and incon- 
stancy, so overpowered her mind, that she abandoned herself 
to all the horrors of despair. A fear that she was sold under 
sin, and all its threatened consequences, took such full pos- 
session of her mind, that she was continually overwhelmed 
with a sense of divine wrath. She lay down to rest fearful 
of awaking in the bottomless pit. As she walked the streets, 
she fancied that the very houses were commissioned to fall on 
her ; and every thing around her seemed to threaten her de- 
struction, and hasten on eternal vengeance. 

Thus she continued for a few months, when one night she 
was awakened from her sleep by a violent storm. The fury 
of the elements she imagined to be an indication of divine 
wrath against herself. 

Terror and anguish took such hold on her, that, her present 
feelings becoming insupportable, she looked back witli regret 
to that state of insensibility which formerly exempted her 
from such horrors, and in her wild paroxysms exclaimed, '• 
that God would harden me as before !" Who would not have 
concluded that Mary's state was now absolutely hopeless '( But, 
as if God had determined to show forth in her a pattern of 
all long-suffering : as if he had determined to make her ease a 
striking example of his being found of them that sought him 
not: he interposed so speedily, and so evidently, as to show 
her that his thoughts are not as our thoughts, nor his ways as 
our ways. 



THE HISTORY OF MARY. 5 

Mary arose the following morning with a mind so free from 
terror as might have seemed to indicate the literal fulfilment 
of her rash request. She went out to purchase milk ; and, 
in passing through the streets, saw a pile of old books exposed 
for sale. Though in haste, she resolved to stop and buy a 
book, without forming any resolution as to its subject. Look- 
ing at the title-page of the first she opened, and reading these 
words, "Alleine's Alarm to the Unconverted/' she said to 
herself, " Surely I must be one : this must be just such a 
book as I want;" and, on inquiring the price, purchased it 
for three half-pence. 

Mary felt a strong propensity to examine her new possession. 
She was impatient to have breakfast over, and the house free 
from any cause of interruption, and gladly seized the first 
opportunity of realizing her anxious wishes. The awful state 
of those who are unmindful of their eternal interests, and the 
misery and condemnation of the human race, set forth in this 
work, were considerations to which Mary had been familiar ; 
but, as she proceeded, her attention was powerfully arrested 
by its pointing to the only refuge for lost sinners in the blood 
and righteousness of the Lord Jesus Christ. Her concep- 
tions of the particular nature and benefits of his work were 
indistinct and confused ; but the simple consideration that she 
was to look out of herself for that-which effectually secured 
her salvation, filled her with joy ana peace, to which she had 
hitherto been a total stranger ; and when she came to a sentence 
which was, in substance, as follows, "Look up to heaven — - 
look around you on earth, and see if there is any thing that 
can afford you pleasure, comfort, or enjoyment, equal to what 
is to be found in Christ ; and if you can say there is not, then 
may you have confidence toward God," — she instantly cried 
out, " Lord, I can say this — I desire nothing but Christ ! 
nothing but Christ !" 

Mary now felt comforted: received power to contend 
against her spiritual enemies; but she fell into a common 
error, by attending to the sensations produced by faith, more 
than to the object which faith apprehended. She suffered 
her hatred of sin, and all those new feelings of which she 
was now conscious, to become the ground of her dependence, 
rather than the merttorious sacrifice of Him in whom her 
help lay. This cannot excite surprise, when it is recollected 
that she was at this time a total stranger to the word of Grod, 
14* * 



6 THE HISTORY OF MARY. 

removed from all opportunities of receiving religious instruc- 
tion, and still biased by the system in which she had been 
educated. She soon, however, began to reason on the pro- 
priety of searching the Scriptures for herself; and, convinced 
of its being her absolute duty, looked diligently for a Bible 
among the old books sold in the street. At length she found 
one, and purchased it for eighteen pence. Having the living 
oracles of God in her possession, she had now a lamp unto 
her feet, and a light unto her path : following which, she 
was led to perceive how far she had perverted the truths of 
God by her own imaginations. The doctrines of justification 
by faith, as explained and vindicated by the apostle Paul, 
filled her with lively joy. She had now (though increasing 
by slow degrees) such an enlarged view of the merits of 
Christ as led her to renounce every degree of dependence on her 
own works ; and being taught of God to receive Jesus in all 
his offices, as he who could not only pardon but subdue her 
iniquities — made of God unto her wisdom, righteousness, 
sanctification — she now found her joy was derived purely from 
Christ, and that her feelings were valuable, only as enabling 
her to cleave unto him with more vigor, to love him more 
ardently, and to praise' him in more animated strains. Now, 
indeed, may it be said that Mary experienced the great bless- 
edness of ceasing entirely^rom her own works, that she might 
enter into rest, by trusting in the Lord Jesus Christ for life 
and salvation. Through his power resting upon her, she rose 
triumphant over all her spiritual enemies : while the love of 
Christ constrained her to seek all possible conformity to his 
image, obedience to his precepts, and devotedness to his ser- 
vice and glory. 

She still continued her regular attendance on the ceremo- 
nies to which she had been accustomed; but continuing also 
to read the Scriptures attentively, she was frequently so much 
struck with many passages directly opposed to the tenets of 
the Church of Home, that she resolved, simply, to receive 
every thing as laid down in the unerring standard of his word. 
But, although she was hence led to renounce one error after 
another, she did not abruptly conclude that it was her duty 
to retire from the communion in which she had been brought 
up : still finding in it something which she could conscien- 
tiously approve. 

But it may be truly affirmed, notwithstanding, that Mary 



THE HISTORY OP MARY. 7 

attacked the strongholds of popery with the sword of the 
Spirit ; which is the word of God. What is said respecting 
the impropriety and danger of praying in an unknown tongue, 
1 Cor. xiv., convinced her that the performance of the mass, 
in Latin, was an unwarrantable deviation from the sentiments 
of the inspired writer on this subject. The condemnation 
pronounced, in the Scriptures, on " vain repetitions/' " volun- 
tary humility/' and (i worshipping of angels/' led her to 
inquire into these subjects, and convinced her that the doc- 
trines of the Church of Rome were at variance with the 
doctrines of the Bible. The reverence paid to images, the 
petitions addressed to the Virgin Mary, and other saints, the 
omission of the second commandment in the prayer-books, 
and many other devices, not only unauthorized by the oracles 
of God, but contrary both to their letter and their spirit, pro- 
duced in her mind the deepest aversion. She began also to 
reflect on the doctrine of purgatory, on the use of holy water, 
and on the alleged efficacy of Romish absolution. The whole 
survey strengthened her opposition to these flagrant corrup- 
tions of the gospel; and she embraced, with unspeakable 
satisfaction, the assurance that Christ had, by one offering, 
perfected for ever them that are sanctified. (Heb. x. 14.) 

The absurdity of supposing that abstinence from flesh, at 
certain times, was meritorious, appeared also evident from 
the following language of the apostle : — " Whatsoever is sold 
in the shambles, that eat, asking no question for conscience' 
sake." The insufficiency of ceremonies to bring the sinner to 
God, and the indignation of God against 'those who trusted in 
them as the ground of their acceptance, were powerfully im- 
pressed on her mind by the first chapter of Isaiah, and the decla- 
ration contained in Amos v. 21, " I hate, I despise your solemn 
feast-days." In the doctrine of transubstantiation she could 
not for some time see any thing directly opposed to the word 
of God ; but upon reading 1 Cor. x., (a description of the 
privileges bestowed on ancient Jews,) she paused on coming 
to the third and fourth verses : — "And did all eat the same 
spiritual meat ; and did all drink the same spiritual drink ; 
(for they drank of that spiritual Rock that followed them, 
and that Rock was Christ.") "That Rock was Christ," she 
repeated : " they drank of him, then, before he appeared on 
the earth. How was this but by faith, and in a spiritual 



8 THE HISTORY OP MARY. 

sense ?" A cloud seemed to be immediately removed from 
her understanding. She instantly saw that believers must 
ever feed on him in the same manner: the absurdity of sup- 
posing that the soul could derive comfort or benefit irom feed- 
ing on him in a carnal sense — the absurdity of declaring that 
his body and blood were really contained in the elements 
of bread and wine, which, to be consistent, must lead to a 
declaration that they were also contained in the rock in the 
wilderness, (the expression, "That Rock was Christ, *' being 
of similar import to the expression, " This is my body, this is 
my blood," etc.,) the unwarrantable practice of giving but one 
part of what she now considered as the representatives of his 
body and blood to the people, etc., struck her so forcibly that 
she instantly renounced all her previous ideas upon this 
subject. 

She did not, however, finally abandon every degree of con- 
nection with the Roman Catholic Church till convinced of 
the false foundation on which it was supported. The pope's 
authority in matters of religion now became the subject of 
her inquiry, which ended in her full conviction that, so far 
from following Peter, (whom he falsely claimed as his pre- 
decessor,) either in doctrines or in conduct, he bore too near 
a resemblance to the man of sin, described in 2 Thcss. ii., to 
leave any doubt on her mind of his being the very person 
there predicted. This Conclusion derived additional confirma- 
tion from recollecting what she had read in a book of ecclesi- 
astical history respecting the pope's first assuming the title of 
universal bishop, which was not till some centuries after the 
death of the apostles, — forming a convincing proof that it 
was impossible to trace his authority to a delegated commis- 
sion from St. Peter. This book she had read when destitute 
of one more agreeable to her natural taste ; and though its 
contents did not at that time excite any inquiries on the sub- 
ject, they now seemed to be providentially suggested to her 
remembrance, to aid the work of Cod in freeing her mind 
from all remaining error on this important subject. Her 
separation from the Roman Catholic Church was now perfect, 
absolute, and unlimited. She even wondered what arguments 
the priests could bring forward in opposition to the conclu- 
sions she had now formed, and resolved to go and speak with 
one of them on the subject. Sim went to the chapel for this 



THE HISTORY OF MARY. 9 

purpose, and was approaching one of the confession-boxes, 
where the priest was sitting; but he, conceiving that she was 
coming to him for the purpose of confessing her sins, pre- 
vented her from speaking, by directing her to some other 
priest, mentioning his name. Mary returned home, quite 
disappointed, and waited long for an opportunity of ac- 
quainting some priest with the sentiments which she had 
embraced. This she now attributes to the gracious dispensa- 
tions of God, who would not suffer her to come in their way 
till her mind was sufficiently prepared, lest she should be in 
any degree confused by their plausible and subtle statements. 
The period which elapsed between Mary's first perception of 
the doctrines of the gospel and her final separation from the 
Roman Catholic Church, was about nine months. 

She was now at a loss to know in what manner she could 
evince her anxiety to assemble with the people of God. She 
accordingly went to a place of worship in the neighborhood ; 
but the power of early habits had still such an influence on 
her mind, that she hastily left it before the commencement of 
the service. Condemning herself for her timidity, she went 
a second time, and remained till the service was entirely con- 
cluded. She was much gratified at hearing prayers and 
praises in a language which she could understand ; and re- 
joiced at hearing those doctrines which the Spirit of God 
had taught her to understand and value ; but having formed 
some intimacy with a few that professed the Protestant faith, 
3he was directed to a church where the truths of God were 
stated in their power, extent, and fullness. How did Mary's 
heart rejoice at now hearing the value and sufficiency of that 
work set forth, which was all her salvation, and all her desire, 
and the enlarged privileges of those who were interested in 
its benefits. Now, indeed, was she filled with joy unspeak- 
able and full of glory. Here her delighted soul was frequently 
refreshed, animated, and encouraged, by her attendance on 
the ministry of the word ; but an increase of domestic cares 
often prohibited her from such a gratification. 

It may easily be supposed that Mary's separation from the 
Roman Catholic Church became an occasion of deep regret 
both to her relations and to the ministers of that communion. 
From what she heard on this subject, she expected ^ to 
receive a visit from some of the latter ; and one day, seeing 



10 THE HISTORY OP MARY. 

a bishop approaching, as she thought, toward the house, she 
felt so agitated that she was near fainting; but, recovering 
herself, she besought God to give her strength and composure 
of mind to plead his cause without fear. After waiting for 
a short time, she was relieved by finding that the bishop had 
gone in another direction. But growing in grace, and in 
the knowledge of her Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, and 
strengthened with might by his Spirit, Mary soon felt rather 
desirous than apprehensive of an interview with him. 

The bishop soon made his appearance in her mean apart- 
ments ; when neither the power of early impressions, the dis- 
parity of their circumstances, nor a conjecture of the particular 
purport of his visit, now prevented her from receiving him 
with the utmost composure. As soon as he was seated, the 
following conversation took place. He began by saying, "I 
hear you have neglected your duty lately/' " You are mis- 
informed, Sir/' said Mary : "I never minded my duty till 
now." " Have you not left the Roman Catholic Church ?" 
" Yes, Sir." He then asked her "what fault she had to find 
with that Church ?" To which she answered, " that its doc- 
trines did not agree with Scripture." He asked her, " What 
doctrines?" Mary then proceeded to enumerate them, and 
to state her several objections on the ground of Scripture au- 
thority — viz. : the praying in an unknown tongue, worshipping 
saints, purgatory, transubstantiation, etc., and concluded by 
offering some arguments to invalidate the authority on which 
they were founded. Whatever the bishop said in opposition 
to Mary's arguments was drawn from reasonings on the pro- 
priety and advantages of these observances : still pleading the 
authority of popes and councils as sufficient for their establish- 
ment ) but Mary was too strongly influenced by the simple 
declaration of God's word to pay any attention to the com- 
mandments of men, even where the Scriptures were silent, 
and much less where they tended to oppose these lively oracles 
of God. Still the bishop asserted the pope's right to govern 
in religious matters, as successor to Peter, when Mary ob- 
served, "that certainly popes were not Peter's successors in 
the holiness of their conduct:" adding, " that she should fear 
for her immortal soul did she live like many of them." To 
this the bishop opposed the direction given by Jesus Christ 
to his disciples, Matt, xxiii. 3, "The Scribes and the Phari- 



THE HISTORY OF MARY. 11 

sees sit in Moses's seat : all, therefore, whatsoever they bid you 
observe, that observe and do ; but do not ye after their works ; 
for they say, and do not." As Mary had never considered 
the import of the passage, she was not furnished with an im- 
mediate reply. But, after the bishop had left her, she con- 
sidered the nature of the instruction given by the Scribes and 
Pharisees to which our Lord alluded ; and, perceiving that it 
was the doctrines and precepts taught by Mos^s that they 
were commissioned to enforce, saw the absurdity of supposing 
that such a commandment authorized our submission to those 
who assumed to themselves the offices of teachers, and taught, 
for doctrines, the commandments of men. During some fur- 
ther conversation with him, Mary at length said, " You 
know, Sir, that a departure from the faith was predicted by 
Paul, in his epistle to Timothy, where he says, ' Some shall 
appear, forbidding to marry, and commanding to abstain from 
meats, which God hath created to be received with thanks- 
giving of them which believe and know the truth/ JSTow, 
look around you, Sir, and see whether any sect or party has 
yet appeared to whom this is so applicable as to the Roman 
Catholic Church." The bishop told her that he would bring 
her a book sufficient to set aside all her arguments, if she 
would promise him to read it with attention. " I shall be 
influenced by it, Sir," said Mary, " according to its agreement 
with the word of God." 

The bishop returned with the book ; but before Mary had 
read it half through, she saw that the whole weight of its 
arguments rested on the authority of popes and councils to 
decree rites and ceremonies: endeavoring to set forth the 
advantages of what they had appointed. When, therefore, 
the bishop again called on her to know what effects had been 
produced in her mind by the perusal of his book, Mary plainly 
told him "that she saw it opposed to Scripture, and must, 
therefore, entirely disregard its contents." Upon which he 
said, " Then give it back to me : I'll leave you to the judg- 
ments of God." " Very well, Sir : to them I had rather be 
left," said Mary, as he was leaving the house. 

Some time after this, Mary's husband was so ill that his 
life was thought to be in danger. When she had first mar- 
ried him, he professed an attachment to the doctrines of the 
Protestant Church, but had accompanied her to her place 



12 THE HISTORY OP MARY. 

of worship, and, after her conversion, returned again to tht 
Established Church. When apparently dying, Mary's friend? 
persuaded him to send for a priest to baptize him, as the most 
effectual way of securing his everlasting salvation. He con- 
sented, and the priest soon made his appearance, in spite of 
Mary's remonstrance, who earnestly endeavored to prevent 
such an act of gross superstition. She followed him into the 
room; and, on his asking for a candle, said to him, " Sir, this 
man was baptized in the Protestant Church ; and I ask you 
by what authority you set that aside as insufficient V ' " Do 
you want to insult a minister of Jesus Christ V said the 
priest. " I don't wish to insult any one," answered Mary ; 
"but a real minister of Jesus Christ would have more regard 
to his word. This man has received the appointed sign of 
baptism — what more can be done for him by human means ? 
Spiritual baptism is the work of God." " Go away, go away, 
woman, and don't interrupt me," said the priest. Mary then 
appealed to her husband, asking him why he submitted, at 
the suggestion of others, to any thing to which his own judgment 
was opposed ; and again turning to the priest, said, " Sir, if 
he was enlightened by the Spirit of God, he would not suffer 
you to proceed." The priest and the people in the room now 
succeeded in turning Mary out, when the ceremony went on. 
After it was finished, the priest said to the sick man, " Now 
you are perfectly free from sin, and fit to appear before the 
judgment-seat of God." As Mary was not present when he 
said this, she did not know that he had uttered such a decla- 
ration till after her husband had recovered, who then told it 
to her, saying, " that the absurdity of supposing that any 
external rite fitted his soul for death and judgment, struck 
him so forcibly at the time, that he was completely disgusted 
with their tenets, and secretly resolved never more to have 
any thing to do with them." 

'The next day the priest renewed his visit. After seeing 
the sick man, he said to Mary, "Your husband is better 
to-day." Mary, knowing that he ascribed the improvement 
in his health to his having baptized him, said, "Yes, we are 
told that the prayer of faith shall save the sick; and I sent 
his name to a place of worship last night, where some believ- 
ers met together, that they might pray for him." After a 
few days had passed, the same priest returned, accompanied 



THE HISTORY OF MARY. 13 

by another. When they had spoken to her husband, one of 
them said to Mary, "Well, I think he's mending greatly." 
"Yes, Sir," she replied, "he is mending in body: I wish I 
could say as much for his soul." " This gentleman," said 
he, pointing to the other priest, " gives me a very good account 
of his soul." "Ah ! Sir," said Mary, "surely I could perceive 
any real improvement in him as well as another. I think God 
has so far given me the spirit of discernment." " Come away," 
said the priest who had first been with her, " and leave this wo- 
man to herself :" when they both went away, and Mary never 
afterward received a visit from any minister of that communion. 

I shall now subjoin a few out of the many instances of the 
triumphs of faith, which have been exemplified in Mary's life 
and conduct. 

The history of God's providential dealings with her would, 
as she declares, fill a volume; but I shall only select two out 
of the many instances which her memory records as Ebenezers 
to his praise and glory. One day Mary's faith was particu- 
larly tried by the hour of dinner drawing near without hav- 
ing a single morsel of provisions in the house. Her husband 
looked at her as if he would say, " Where now is thy God ?" 
At length he said to her, " Mary, you had better go out and 
try to borrow something, that we may not be left without our 
dinner." She answered, "You know I have not any one to 
go to:" when, immediately checking herself, she cried out, 
" But why do I say this ? Have I not my Heavenly Father 
to go to?" Mary immediately went to prayer, and, pleading 
before God the destitute state of her husband and children, 
her confidence in him was again confirmed, when she soon 
proved that he remembered his word unto his servant, upon 
which he had caused her to hope, and that they who trust in 
him shall never be confounded. In about ten minutes after 
she had risen from her knees, a woman appeared at the door, 
with something concealed under her cloak. In the firm con- 
fidence of faith, Mary ran towards her, opening her cloak, and 
saying, " Come show what you have brought me." The 
woman said that she had brought her a piece of meat, some 
potatoes, and twopence for cabbage. Mary looked at her 
husband, crying out, " Now do you see how the Lord remem- 
bers me? See how he has supplied all our wants." That 
this was a particular answer to prayer appeared evident to 



14 THE HISTORY OF MARY. 

Mary from various considerations. The woman who brought 
her this present was not in such circumstances as to enable 
her to give much to others. She was not remarkable for gen- 
erosity. It was Lent time, and she was a Roman Catholic, 
and would not, therefore, be naturally disposed to encourage 
any person to eat meat. What particular suggestion induced 
her to act in this manner, is among the mysteries yet to be 
revealed of God's providence. 

One morning Mary arose without any thing in the house 
for breakfast. The wants of her family requiring an imme- 
diate supply, she went out, determined, though very reluct- 
antly, to apply to her sister, who was greatly displeased with 
her for renouncing that religion to which she herself con- 
tinued firmly attached. As Mary approached the house, her 
heart sunk within her : so that she found herself unable even 
to knock at the door. She walked up and down the street, 
endeavoring to resolve upon making her intended application, 
but in vain. She could not bring herself to address her 
sister, and returned home, while the consideration of again 
seeing her hungry children, without being able to bear her 
usual testimony to the goodness of God in supplying their 
wants, caused her to shed tears of sorrow, shame, and dis- 
appointment. But, on entering the house, who can describe 
her wonder, gratitude, and joy, on finding that her sister had 
called there during her absence, leaving a supply of bread, 
meat, tea, etc. 

The remaining circumstances which I shall record concern- 
ing Mary, occurred during my own personal intercourse with 
her, which was not for some years after her conversion. I 
was one day with a poor man, who was very ill, when Mary 
entered the room, and sat down near him. From her appear- 
ance, I did not expect to hear her address him in the language 
of instruction. But how was my attention arrested on hear- 
ing her set forth the truths of the gospel with power, liveli- 
ness, and precision ! When she had done speaking, I asked her 
how long she had known these precious truths ? She gave me 
particular satisfaction, and led me to cultivate her acquaintance. 

Upon visiting her one morning, she related what she called 
"the mercies of the past night." Shortly after she went to 
sleep, she was awakened by one of the children ^ crying. 
Having succeeded in endeavoring to compose him, she 



THE HISTORY OF MARY. 15 

again lay down. The moon shone brightly into her apart- 
ment : attracted by its pleasing appearance, she threw back 
the curtain, and indulged the most delightful meditations, 
mingled with prayer and thanksgiving, till toward morning, 
when she began to reflect on the goodness of God, who, know- 
ing her inability to indulge such communion with him by 
day, providentially called her from her sleep to favor her with 
such a night. What complaints should we hear from many 
did a sleepless night succeed a day of toil ! — while Mary was 
taught to enumerate it among the blessings of divine good- 
ness, that her eyes prevented the night-watches, that she 
might be occupied in his word ! 

Though precluded by her situation in life, and the weight 
of her domestic cares, from occupying a conspicuous place in 
the Church of God, she took a lively interest in the prosper- 
ity of the Redeemer's kingdom. Her eyes filled with tears 
when she heard of a strayed sheep being added to the fold of 
Christ, or of any circumstance which promised to spread the 
savor of his precious name. One morning, when in great 
distress, I carried her a trifling sum of money, and, at the same 
time, read a letter received from Persia, containing an account 
of the Scriptures being admitted into the palace of the Per- 
sian monarch, who had expressed his pleasure at hearing their 
contents, and promised to give them his countenance : Mary 
manifested lively emotions of gratitude and joy as I proceeded, 
and when I was leaving her said, "I thank you for your 
money, but more for your good news." 

The history of Mary seems to speak a language too plain 
and obvious to need much to be said, in order to press it upon 
the consideration of our readers, as instructing us in the way 
of righteousness. A faith like hers, triumphant over the 
influence of education, early- impressions, and long-confirmed 
habits, and obtaining dominion over her understanding, hei 
heart, and affections, so independent of all human means, 
must surely present itself to every considerate reader as a 
faith of a divine origin, communicated by the Spirit of God 
through the simple perusal of his holy word. 

In hopes of its being instrumental, through the divine 
blessing, in leading our readers to the happy experience of 
joys and privileges such as these, we have now given them 
the history of Mary. 



* G THE HISTORY OP MARY. 

FLAGELLATIONS IN ROME. 

A correspondent of the New York Express, writing from 
Rome, says, << I witnessed last night one of the most ridicu- 
lous ceremonies a man in his wildest dreams could imagine a 

flagellation. We had secured seats in the church, when some 
priests came out from a side-door, and, with the assistance of 
two small boys with bald spots upon the crowns of their heads, 
who swung censers with smoking frankincense, and another 
small boy who had a bald spot upon the crown of his head, 
and who rang a tea-bell from time to time, performed mass, 
and all went out at the same door, except one monk, who 
commenced a tiresome and stupid discourse about the neces- 
sity of sinners, from time to time, when they felt convinced that 
they needed it, of mortifying the flesh in an humble and be- 
coming manner. During the sermon, some of those in the 
church who responded the loudest arose from their knees, 
and kneeled in the centre, when another man, with a bald place 
upon the top of his head, and a black gown thrown over him, 
distributed among them a variety of leather straps, about two 
feet in length, and with which those in the middle of the 
church would belabor themselves when the time came. The 
old monk waxed warm and enthusiastic, and when finally the 
five lights were extinguished, one after another, until it was 
total darkness, the noise commenced, and such thrashings and 
beatings as we heard, but could not see, kept us in continual 
convulsions of laughter, so we were almost afraid we should 
be turned out. It sounded precisely as if the whole forty 
or fifty were beating one another with the straps; and I have 
no doubt some of them were so doing. I assure you it was 
very ludicrous; and when a light was brought suddenly in, 
to the consternation of the strappers, they all sneaked back 
to their obscurity at the sides of the church, and the old monk 
came around, took his straps from the flagellated ones, and 
the doors being opened, a fresh crowd came rushing in, who, 
no doubt, repeated the performance ; but we had satisfied our- 
selves, and, scrambling over the benches, made our way out 
into the street. What sights one does see in Rome !" And 
this, too, in the year of grace 1855. 

Nashville, Tenn. : Published by E. Stevenson & F. A. Owen, for the SI. K. Church, South. 



No. 41. 



THE DYING CATHOLIC GIRL. 



" Mother/' said a dying girl in Ireland, " it is a dreadftu 
thing to die !" 

"It is that, my darling/' the mother said, as she fondly 
gazed with tearful eyes upon the fading cheek of her child. 
" that I could die instead ! But you have confessed, and 
why are you still afraid ?" 

" Yes, I have confessed every sin I can remember, and I 
have got absolution, and I shall have the holy oil when I'm 
just at the last, mother ; but then I must be in the fires of 
purgatory soon, and you are very poor, mother." 

The mother's quick affection caught the meaning of the 
words, and their painful connection. "Ah, sure, I see it 
now," she said : " true for us, Mary, we are poor, but I'll 
work these fingers to the bone but I'll get money for the 
masses, that will hasten the passage to heaven. My own 
Mary, namesake of the blessed Virgin, do you think your poor, 
lonely mother could rest till your soul is safe in heaven ? No, 
she'll work by day and pray by night for the peace of your 
soul. So be easy, darling, and don't trouble for the masses 
any more at all." 

" It will be no peace to my soul to know that you have to 
work hard to get masses said, mother. That's what makes it 
harder still to die." 

"Sure; but mayhap you'll know nothing about it there, 
darling : leave that all to the priest now, and say the prayers 
to the Virgin he bade you. That'll bring peace to your heart." 

" No, it is all dark. I want to know where I am going, 
and more, a great deal more, than the priest would tell me. 
Mother," she added quickly, "I am thinking often of the 
death-bed of cousin Kathleen. She had no absolution, no 
unction, no masses ; but she died so happy !" 



A THE DYING CATHOLIC GIRL. 

m " She was a heretic, Mary, and knew nothing at all, so she 
died in her sins. Better as you are, dying in the holy faith 
of the true Church, and all her blessed rites, even if you do 
not feel as happy as poor Kathleen." 

"Some words she said come across me now, mother- 
1 Though I walk through the valley of the shadow of deathj 
I will fear no evil : for Thou art with me : thy rod and thy 
staff they comfort me.' What did she mean ? I have no 
comfort, no staff. I am trembling in the dark, and see only 
great fires beyond, and am full of fear. Kathleen did not 
believe in purgatory." 

" Hush, now, Mary dear : sickness and pain have turned 
your mind from the right way : go to sleep and forget her, 
and trust in the blessed Virgin." 

" Well^ mother, I'll try; but I can't help thinking it must 
be a happier thing to go straight to heaven at once. I wish 
I could remember all Kathleen said about it." 

" It's not for the like of us to go straight to heaven at once, 
Mary : we must go the way the Church directs." 

" But sure it's a hard way, mother dear : I often fear that 
some who get into the fires of purgatory may never get out 
again." 

"Now don't be mistrustful of the masses, darling: but 
if the priest knew all you've been saying, it would go hard 
for me to pay for so many. So now just leave thinking about 
it at all, and here's Pat will sit by you awhile, till I run to 
my work and back." 

Pat had come in and overheard part of the conversation, 
and now sat down by his sister's side with a heavy heart ; for 
the doctor had said she could not recover, and he had travelled 
from another part of the country to see her before her death. 

" Mary," said he, when their mother had left them together, 
"what was that about cousin Kathleen ?" 

"Ah, Pat, I was wishing I could die as happy as she did ; 
though it's true she had no absolution nor unction, and didn't 
believe in purgatory, and thought she was going to heaveu at 
once." 

"But you wouldn't wish to die in error and sin, Mary?" 

"No; but hush now, and I'll tell you, Pat, that if ever 
there was an angel on earth, Kathleen was one ; and I can't 
believe that her soul is in hell just because " 



THE DYING CATHOLIC GIRL. 3 

"Because she believed in the blood and merits of the 
Lord Jesus Christ ?" exclaimed Pat : " no, Mary, for that's 
just the reason she had no need to go there at all 3 and as 
for absolution, she had it, and as for unction, she had that too." 

" What's this you're telling me ? Why sure she was called 
a heretic, and had no blessing from the hands of the Church." 

" No, but she got it a quicker way, straight from the hand 
of the Lord himself. He spoke in her soul, Mary, and 
comforted her with assurance of his pardon and love. Do 
you think she needed anybody else to tell her after that? 
And she had the true l unction from the Holy One/ and 
knew all things that made her wise unto salvation ; and what 
need of oils outside after that ?" 

Mary stared upon her brother with mingled feelings of fear 
and delight, at last exclaiming : " Sure, brother, you've turned 
heretic too !" 

" Well, never mind that : I don't care for nicknames at 
all; but I've been reading the Bible, Mary, God's own 
blessed book, full of such loving words to poor sinners as 
would melt your heart." 

"But how did you get it? Does the priest know?" 

"Sure, I didn't stop to ask him; but I got it of a i reader/ 
he called himself, and he said that in England every man 
might read the Bible, if he liked ; and the priests — but no, 
not priests — the pastors of the Church there were always de- 
lighted to read to the people out of a poor man's own Bible. 
And I said to myself, Tma true loyal subject of the Queen, 
and why may not I do as her other subjects do, and have a 
Bible of my own ? So I will.' And I did ; for you know I 
was a bit of a scholar once. And I read and read, and some 
things were so pretty, and went so quick to my heart, that I 
couldn't stop any more if I'm burned for it. But I haven't 
told mother yet." 

" Poor mother, it will break her heart !" said Mary, with 
a sigh. " But now, Pat, I'm out of breath with listening to 
you, for longing to know what it is about purgatory that you've 
read in the Bible." 

" Why, just as much as you see in that empty platter, and 
that's nothing at all ; and I've searched from one end to the 
other : so make your heart easy, Mary, for you can't go to a 
place that there isn't in God's creation. You shall go, and 



1 THE DYING CATHOLIC GIRL. 

I'll promise you on the faith of the Holy Scriptures, straight 
to heaven at once, if you'll only do one thing." ° 

" What is it, Pat ? what is there I wouldn't do if I 
could I Is it to make ' a station V " 

$ No, no, not the like of such things as that; but if you'll 
listen, I'll read it in the beautiful words that they are;" and, 
drawing from his pocket the precious little volume, that had 
enlightened himself, the young Irishman read: "God so 
loved the world, that he gave his only-begotten Son, that who- 
soever believeth in him should not perish, but have ever- 
lasting life." John iii. 16. "He was wounded for our 
transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities : the chastise- 
ment of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we 
are healed." Is'a. liii. 5. "Mary, do you think the Lord 
only suffered by halves, and only heals by halves ? ' Let the 
wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts ; 
and let him return unto the Lord, and he will have mercy 
upon him; and to our Grod, for he will abundantly pardon.' 
Isa. lv. 7. Is it ' abundant pardon,' if we go to suffer 
torments in prison before we get it at all, Mary ?" 

" 0, sure, all this is strange to my ear, Pat ; but true enough 
they are beautiful words." 

"I'm thinking, Mary, the priest would have said purga- 
tory was a good enough place for the thief on the cross ; but 
Jesus said: 'This day shalt thou be with me in paradise.' 
That's ' absent from the body, present with the Lord.' As 
he forgave him entirely, so he does now ; for Christ i.s ' the 
same yesterday, to-day, and for ever.' The Bible says: 
'There is now no condemnation to them that are in Christ 
Jesus.' 'Who shall lay any thing to the charge of Cod's 
elect?' 'It is Christ that died;' not they suffered— but 
Christ died; and be sure that the sin which is laid on hmi 
has never a pang for body or soul of one that believes on him. 
And what need of an earthly priest, when, < by one offering 
Christ hath perfected for ever them that are sanctified ?' " # 

"'Them that are sanctified,' Pat! what is that? Is it 
not to be sanctified that we go to purgatory ?" 

" No • ' For this is the covenant that I will make with the 
house of Israel after those days, saith the Lord : I will put 
mv laws into their mind, and write them in their hearts ; and 
their sins and their iniquities will I remember no more. 



THE DYING CATHOLIC GIRL. 5 

Now, where remission of these is, there is no more offering 
for sin/ Heb. viii. 10, 12; x. 18. No offering of your 
own sufferings, Mary ; no masses for our mother to pay for. 
When the blessed Lord was going to be betrayed, before he 
was taken prisoner, he prayed for all his people, and in his 
prayer he said not a word about their going through purga- 
tory, nor getting sanctified in any way but one." 

"And what was that V 

" He said, ' Sanctify them through thy truth : thy word is 
truth/ John xvii. 17. The Apostle Paul said : ' Christ 
loved the Church, and gave himself for it; that he might 
sanctify and cleanse it by the word/ Eph. v. 25, 26. And 
again, 'How much more shall the blood of Christ, who 
through the eternal Spirit offered himself without spot to 
God, purge your conscience from dead works to serve the 
living God?' Heb. ix. 14. And to the Lord's people at 
Thessalonica he said : ' We are bound to give thanks always 
to God for you, brethren beloved of the Lord, because God 
hath from the beginning chosen you to salvation, through 
sanctification of the Spirit and belief of the truth/ 2 Thess. 
ii. 13. So, Mary, it is Christ's blood for us, and Christ's 
word in us; and that is salvation out and out/' 

" brother, sure you are sent for a blessing to my dying- 
bod, to tell me these beautiful things ; and all so easy and 
straight, and just as Kathleen used to say ! But now, what 
is the thing I am to do, Pat ? You said if I'd do one thing." 

" Why, then, it is just this : ' Having/ as the precious 
word says, 'a High-Priest over the house of God' — that's the 
Lord Jesus, with his one offering of himself once offered — 
' let us draw near with a true heart, in full assurance of faith/ 
Heb. x. 21, 22. You must. believe these beautiful things, 
and that will make them your own. ' Believe on the Lord 
Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved/ (Acts xvi. 31,) now, 
at once ; and, ' being justified by faith, we have peace with 
God, through our Lord Jesus Christ/ and then you may 
'rejoice in hope/ as it says, 'of the glory of God/ for, 
'being justified by his blood, we shall be saved from wrath 
through him/ Rom. v. 1, 2, 9. Mary, it's all of a piece : 
it's all like the word of God, worth loving and trusting for ever ! 
Now, can you find in your heart to believe what God says ?" 
15 



6 THE DYING CATHOLIC GIRL. 

m " I am afraid only that it's too good to be true," said Mary 
timidly; "for, Pat, what's the reason the priest does not tell 
us the same, if it's true ?" 

"It's true, for it is in the Holy Bible, and God has said it • 
and the reason the priest does not tell it is plain too, for such 
words go clean to upset his popish patchwork of absolutions, 
masses, and purgatory. But, Mary, just leave minding his 
reasons, and turn to the Lord himself: 'draw near with a 
true heart, in full assurance of faith.' It's faith you must 
have, and not masses, Mary. The offering is made, the blood 
is shed that must cleanse away all your sins, so that there is 
nothing to do but to believe in Christ alone." 

" Faith, faith— what is it ? how shall I get it ?" 

" 0, but it's a darling of a book, for it tells that too : f It is 
the gift of God.' ' Now faith is the substance' — or, as it says 
in the margin, the ground of confidence — ' of things hoped for, 
the evidence of things not seen.' Heb. xi. 1. It's just be- 
lieving that the Lord says true, and will do as he has promised, 
before you get the thing promised. Sure, Mary dear, you 
don't think I'd tell you a lie ?" 

" No, that I do not, the kind brother that you have been 
to me : it's the soul of truth you always were." 

" Then think still higher and better of Christ, that died 
for you : believe what he says at once. But stay, there's a 
precious help yet ; for ' no man can say that Jesus is the 
Lord, but by the Holy Ghost/ (1 Cor. xii. 3;) and he can 
enable you to believe it all. Ask him to teach you. ' Ask, 
and ye shall receive / for the Lord said, ' If ye, being evil, 
know how to give good gifts unto your children, how much 
more shall your Heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to them 
that ask him V Luke xi. 13. 0, if God gives you his holy 
Spirit — and he will, if you ask him right truly and earnestly 
— then you will see how it is that Jesus his own ?elf ' is all, 
and in all/ 'wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctificatiun, 
and redemption/ (1 Cor. i. 30,) to poor lost sinners; and 
how he who 'knew no sin' was made to be 'sin for us, that 
we might be made the righteousness of God in him.' '2 Cor. 
v. 21. And then, Mary dear, if indeed you must leave us, 
if you must not stay any longer here, you will pass without 
fear through the shadowy valley, with the staff of truth to 



THE DYING CATHOLIC GIRL 7 

lean upon; and your happy spirit, ' absent from the body/ 
shall be (for he says it) ( present with the Lord/ " 2 Cor. v. 8. 

" Pat, Kathleen might well be happy to know all this ; 
but you must say it all over and over again, when mother 
is not by ; for it is taking the thorns from the dying pillow, 
one by one, and I do hope I shall be able to believe it all. 
But what will the priest say ? Perhaps he will curse me for 
a heretic, Pat." And she shuddered at the thought. 

" 0, but it'll do the most harm to himself, then : never fear. 
Be true, and hold fast by the Lord Jesus and his own words, 
and you need not fear what man can do." 

"And our poor mother, who loves the Church and the 
Virgin, and so many saints, and believes in them all." 

"Ah, we must say something, now and then, out of the 
Bible, that will catch her ear, and win her heart; and, above 
all, pray to God to enlighten her with the Holy Spirit, that 
she may know her darling is safe in heaven, when we are 
left lonely by the grave-side. Sure it's a blessed religion to 
comfort us all, whether living or dying ; and I only wish the 
sweet story were told from Ballycastle to Cape Clear, till 
every man and woman and child knew that Jesus died for 
them, and that for Ms sake God has mercy on them that 
believe. 0, wouldn't Ireland be a happy land, then ! for I 
know who would have to emigrate pretty quick, or else to 
turn and preach the true gospel. It's the gospel we want; 
and then it's God's word and not mine that says : i Happy is 
that people, that is in such a case : yea, happy is that people, 
whose God is the Lord/ " Psa. cxliv. 15. 



DISEMBODIED SAINTS. 

The saints who die, of Christ possess'd, 
Enter into immediate rest : 
For them no further test remains 
Of purging fires and torturing pains. 

Who trusting in their Lord depart, 
Cleansed from all sin and pure in heart, 
The bliss unmix'd, the glorious prize, 
They find with Christ in paradise. 



s 



THE DYING CATHOLIC GIRL. 
PENITENCE AND PRAYER. 

BY C. WESLEY. 

God of love, come from above, 

God that hear'st the prayer, 
All this mountain load remove, 

All this world of care. 
The cause express of my distress, 

1 own with grief and anguish : 
Still, for want of pard'ning grace, 

For want of faith, I languish. 

Thou God unknown, for whom I groan 

In endless lamentation: 
Wilt thou suffer me to moan, 

And die without salvation ? 
when shall I with rapture cry, 

Thy servant hath found favor ! 
Thee, my Lord, I magnify, 

I joy in thee, my Saviour. 

For this I pant, athirst and faint, 

And cry in pain unceasing : 
Give the only good I want, 

Give the gospel blessing. 
Now let me know the grace below, 

To all believers given : 
Bid me feel thy love, and go 

In perfect peace to heaven. 



PENITENCE AND THANKSGIVING. 

BY C. WESLEY. 

Allow'd to kiss my Saviour's feet, 

And here rejoice and grieve, 
I never can the sins forget 

Which Jesus doth forgive : 
Sorrow and joy unspeakable, 

Alternately I prove ; 
And now my baseness I bewail, 

And now admire his love. 

might I thus through life remain 

Delightfully distress'd, 
And still indulge the pleasing pain 

Which tears my happy breast , 
Till He, my heart's desire, appears, 

Revealed in heavenly light , 
And wipes away these blessed tears 

By that ecstatic sight. 



No. 42. 



THE ROMAN CATHOLIC SCHOOL- 
MASTER. 



BY A CLERGYMAN. 



Being on a visit for a week in one of the chief cities of 
Ireland, it was no small pleasure to me to devote a few days 
to the revisiting of some of the most familiar scenes of my 
youth, a great portion of which had been spent in that city. 
On returning one evening, I found a card left for me with the 
name of "J M /' and a few lines written under- 
neath in pencil to say, that J M regretted not 

having found me within, that he was anxious to see me, and 
that he wished particularly to pay me a small sum of money 
which he had owed to me for several years. He added that, 
as he feared it would be impossible for him to get another 
day's leave of absence for some time, I should confer a favor 
upon him, if not inconvenient, by paying him a visit before I 
returned home ; and giving as the place of his residence the 
name of a small town a few miles distant from the city. 

" J M ," said I, looking at the card with much 

surprise : "I must by all means go to see him." Accord- 
ingly, the next day I went to the little town where he resided. 
On arriving and inquiring for him, I was directed to a pretty 
school-house in the neighborhood. The hum of youthful 
voices soon guided me to the school-room ; and there I found 

J M busily employed with his scholars; but not 

long to continue so, for after a greeting, in which tears of joy 
could not be suppressed, he ran off to the adjacent parsonage 
to ask permission to absent himself for an hour from his 
school. This being readily granted, I was in the first place 
taken into a very neat parlor to see his wife : (an old acquaint- 
ance :) then, one after another, four or five fine healthy little 
ones, well clad, were brought in and made to shake hands with 



4 THE ROMAN CATHOLIC SCHOOLMASTER. 

their father's friend, which they did at once with that smile 
of good-humored, frank-hearted friendliness which is so 
agreeable and endearing in children. Afterwards I was shown 
the church of which he was parish-clerk — his wife being the 
sextoness : the extensive, well-chosen, and well-ordered lending 
library of which he was the manager; and the regularly kept" 
business-looking books of a loan-fund, of which he was the 
accountant. I was shown his little garden, too, luxuriant at 
the time with the buds and blossoms of the spring • while over 
all there was a peculiar look of neatness and comfort. 

After we had returned to the house, he said to me, with 
tears in his eyes, " You remember, sir, what I was, how I was 
circumstanced when you saw me last, and you see what I am 
now. When I parted from you last, I may say an outcast and 
a wanderer, you prayed with me that the God who was with 
Jacob in the desert, with Hagar at the well, and with Israel 
in their wanderings, would be with me and bless me. ' 
will you now kneel down with me and praise the holy name 
of that prayer-answering Grod, that he has been with me, and 
has done for me more than either you or I could ask or 
think V I did so, and the sobs of gratitude which swelled 
from his heart made it difficult for me to give articulate utter- 
ance to what I desired to express. 

We parted, but not until he had put into my hand a pound 
note, saying, " There, sir, is the money which several years 

ago you lent me, when as a fugitive I was leaving N , and 

which I know you never could have expected to receive again. 
But for it I am sure I should have perished ; and now I must 
insist upon repaying it, for my present income from the differ- 
ent sources which I have mentioned to you is about one hun- 
dred pounds - a year : this is more than enough for all our 
wants, and will, with the Lord's blessing, at the end of each 
year, enable me to put by something for my children. I 
would have sent it to you, sir," he added, " before now, but 
that I have been intending ever since I came here to go down 
to visit my old neighborhood again, and could not bring my- 
self to forego the pleasure of giving it to you with my own 
hand, and telling you with my own lips of what great things 
the Lord has done for me ; and the same desire prevented me 
from writing. Various circumstances have from time to time 
interfered with the fulfilment of my intention, but when I 



THE ROMAN CATHOLIC SCHOOLMASTER. 3 

heard that you were in town, I went at once to the place 
where you were staying." 

One further interview I had with J M before I 

returned home : he came to see me on the evening of my de- 
parture, and his hand was the last of the many whose farewell 
grasp I had that evening to receive and return. 

Having thus made my readers so far acquainted with one 
who, although moving in an humble sphere, ranks, I am per- 
suaded, among the inheritors of the kingdom of heaven, I 
proceed to furnish them with some particulars of his earlier 
history. When I first became acquainted with him, he was a 

Roman Catholic schoolmaster in the village of N , where 

I was then living as pastor of an extensive rural parish, in a 
remote and wild district of the south of Treland. Pie attracted 
my notice as a smart, intelligent, but apparently very bigoted 
man, who, however, unlike most others of his class, courted, 
rather than shunned, the acquaintance and society of Pro- 
testants, of whom there were a good many of the humbler 
ranks in the village. The temperance movement, under the 
auspices of Father Mathew, was at the time at its height. The 

village of N , however, probably owing to its remoteness, 

had not as yet received a visit from him, and J M , 

himself a man of strict and abstemious sobriety, and there- 
fore actuated, it Would seem, by no other motive than the 
laudable desire of making himself useful in the suppression 
of a vice which was particularly prevalent in that locality, 
became a member of the parent association, in order to estab- 
lish a branch in his own village. Having, however, presumed 
to engage in this matter without having obtained or even 

sought the sanction of the priest of the parish, J M 

was most severely taken to task for what was termed his offi- 
ciousness, and received orders to keep himself more quiet for 
the future. Upon this interference with him in the prosecu- 
tion of what he deemed a " labor of love," and one in which 
he fully expected to have received approval and encourage- 
ment, he commented on it in terms which he was at little 
pains either to modify or to conceal : and this was, as he after- 
wards acknowledged, the first loosening of the tie which had 
bound him from infancy to the Church of Rome. 

A few weeks after this occurrence, it happened that the 
ordinary quiet of the little village was somewhat ruffled by 



4 THE ROMAN CATHOLIC SCHOOLMASTER. 

the visit of a deputation from the Bible Society : in behalf of 
which an evening meeting was held in the school-house, which 
was immediately adjoining the village. The school-room was 
on this occasion thronged; and the audience became in no 
small degree excited when, upon one of the speakers alluding 
to the doctrine of purgatory and its incapability of scriptural 
proof, a voice cried out from the corner of the room, " I am 
a Koman Catholic : I believe in the doctrine of purgatory, and 
lean prove it from Scripture." I was in the chair; and imme- 
diately requested that the gentlemen who were to address the 
meeting as a deputation might not be interrupted ; adding, 
that at the close of the proceedings full opportunity should be 
afforded, and a patient hearing given, to any one who had an 
objection to make. 

J M (for his was the voice) accordingly at once 

sat down ; and when the address of the last speaker was con- 
cluded, I called upon him for the proof of the doctrine of 
purgatory, which he had affirmed that he could adduce. He 
stood up and referred to the passage, (Matt. v. 25, 26,) 
"Agree with thine adversary quickly, while thou art in the 
way with him ; lest at any time the adversary deliver thee to 
the judge, and the judge deliver thee to the officer, and thou 
be cast into prison. Verily I say unto thee, Thou shalt by no 
means come out thence, till thou hast paid the uttermost 
farthing :" which he repeated in a triumphant tone, adding, 
" There is a sufficient proof of purgatory I" 

"Well, and how do you prove purgatory from that pas- 
sage ?" quietly asked Mr. P , the member of the deputa- 
tion whose observations had in the first instance called forth 
his interruption. 

"How do I prove it? why — how do I prove it?" said 

J M , with some confusion, " ! the passage which 

I have quoted proves it most satisfactorily." 

" Well, but how ?" asked Mr. P again : " let us just 

hear your proof of purgatory from that passage." 

Poor J M • hemmed and coughed, stared at the 

passage, read it over, coughed and cleared his throat again. 
At last, "Well, gentlemen," said he, "I cannot exactly re- 
member just now how the passage proves the doctrine ef pur- 
gatory; but I know it does so, and I have a book at home, 
which, if I had it here, would show you that it does." 



THE ROMAN CATHOLIC SCHOOLMASTER. 5 

" Well, my good friend/' said Mr. P , " we are obliged 

to you for coming here this evening, and also for standing 
forward as you have done in defence of what you believe to 
be true; but let me give you one piece of advice, namely, 
never again to bring forward a passage of Scripture in sup- 
port of a doctrine without knowing how it actually does sup- 
port it, or without being able to tell what the meaning of the 
passage is. And let me further show you what the meaning 
of this passage really is, and you can compare what I say with 
your book, which you say you have at home, and with the 
Bible, which I am happy to see you have got in your hand, 
and then judge which interpretation is the correct one. Just 

look/' continued Mr. P , " at the verses immediately pre* 

ceding the passage whioh you have referred to, and read from 
the twenty-first of the chapter/ ' 

J M ■ read accordingly as follows from his Bible : 

" Ye have heard that it was said by them of old time, thou 
shalt not kill ; and whosoever shall kill shall be in danger of 
the judgment, but I say unto you, That whosoever is angry 
with his brother without a cause shall be in danger of the 
judgment : and whosoever shall say to his brother, Baca, shall 
be in danger of the council ; but whosoever shall say, Thou 
fool, shall be in danger of hell-fire. Therefore, if thou bring 
thy gift to the altar, and there rememberest that thy brother 
hath aught against thee, leave there thy gift before the altar, 
and go thy way : first be reconciled to thy brother, and then 
come and offer thy gift. Agree with thine adversary quickly, 
while thou art in the way with him ; lest at any time the ad- 
versary deliver thee to the judge, and the judge deliver thee 
to the officer, and thou be cast into prison. Verily, I say unto 
thee, Thou shalt by no means come out thence, till thou hast 
paid the uttermost farthing." 

" Now," said Mr. P , " read the next verse, the 27th." 

He proceeded : " Ye have heard that it was said by them of 
old time, Thou shalt not commit adultery." " Now do you 
not see that our Lord is commenting, from the 21st to the 
27th verses, upon the sixth commandment, ' Thou shalt not 
kill/ showing that it has a spiritual as well as a literal signifi- 
cation : that there are other ways of breaking it besides the 
actual commission of murder ? Thus He shows that he who is 
angry with or speaks evil of his brother, calling him oppro- 
15* 



6 THE ROMAN CATHOLIC SCHOOLMASTER. 

brious names, such as ' Raca/ or ' Thou fool/ is a transgressor 
of this commandment, and as such liable to punishment from 
the Jewish council, or sanhedrim as it was called, here on 
earth, and to the punishment of hell-fire as a violator of God's 
law hereafter. For which reason he adds, ' Therefore, if thou 
bring thy gift to the altar, and there rememberest that thy 
brother hath aught against thee, leave there thy gift before 
the altar, and go thy way : first be reconciled unto thy brother, 
and then come and offer thy gift.' (verses 23, 24.) And having 
given such advice with regard to any quarrel, or cause of 
anger and evil-speaking between brethren, he annexes to it a 
further piece of wise and prudent counsel with regard to any 
difference that might arise between any of his disciples and 
one of their fellow-men, who did not properly come under the 
denomination of a brother — 'Agree with thine adversary/ etc. 
That this passage belongs to and forms a part of his comment 
upon the sixth commandment, and therefore cannot have any 
reference whatever to such a doctrine as purgatory/' conti- 
nued Mr. P , "is further evident from his commencing 

to comment in like manner upon the seventh commandment, 
1 Thou shalt not commit adultery/ in the following verse. 
And now if you turn to Luke xii. 58, 59, where the same 
passage is again recorded, you will find all doubt or question 
upon the subject put an end to altogether; for there it runs 
thus : ' When thou goest with thine adversary to the magis- 
trate, as thou art in the way, give diligence that thou mayest 
be delivered from him ; lest he hale thee to the judge, and the 
judge deliver thee to the officer, and the officer cast thee into 
prison. I tell thee, thou shalt not depart thence till thou hast 
paid the very last mite/ Now where, I again ask you, is the 
proof of purgatory, or the remotest allusion to purgatory, in 
this passage V 

J M at once gave up the argument, and went 

away much confused, endeavoring to cover his retreat by 
saying, " that he was a Roman Catholic, and yet he had the 
Bible, and would read the Bible, and no man had forbidden 
him, or should hinder him, from so doing." Immediately 
after which the meeting dispersed. 

A fortnight or more had elapsed without my seeing any 

thing of J M , when one evening I was sitting 

alone in my little parlor, when a gentle knock at the door 



THE ROMAN CATHOLIC SCHOOLMASTER. 7 

announced a visitor, and J M stealthily entered, 

looking behind him as if dreading detection. 

" I came down to you, sir," said he, " in the dark, fearing 
I might be noticed, to ask you if you will kindly lend me a 
Douay Bible : I wish greatly to compare it with the Protestant 
version which I have." I immediately supplied him with 
what he desired, and thought it expedient to say no more on 
that occasion than briefly to urge upon him the necessity of 
praying earnestly for the light and guidance of the Holy 
Spirit in his search after truth. 

Not many evenings elapsed before I received another visit. 
This time there was less of fearfulness or reserve about him. 

" I have come, sir," said he, " to ask you some questions 
concerning what I have read. To tell you the truth, sir," he 
added, " my mind has never been at rest since that evening 
of the Bible meeting, when I found that the passage which 
is so often brought forward by the priests and defenders of 
my Church as a proof of purgatory, is no proof of it, and has 
no reference to it at all. I then began to think, what I never 
had an idea of before, that perhaps, after all, you Protestants 
may be right ; and, if so, that I must be totally and danger- 
ously wrong ; and I am now almost convinced that such is the 
case. " 0, sir !" said he, " will you tell me just what you 
think about purgatory? If the Church of Borne is wrong 
about that, one of her very chief doctrines, I may say, she 
cannot be infallible." 

"Well, then," said I, "sit down, and let us have a little 
talk about purgatory. I will be candid with you, and tell you 
at once what my opinion is, namely, that it is just an inven- 
tion of the Church of Borne to make money — to make, as the 
Bible says, ' merchandise of the souls of men/ and the 
reasons why I think so are briefly these : In the first place, 
while I find heaven and hell — the place of eternal happiness 
and that of eternal torment — continually spoken of and re- 
ferred to in Scripture, I never find the slightest mention, the 
remotest hint, of there being any such place as purgatory. 
On the contrary, I am told in the parable of the rich man 
and Lazarus, that when they died, the former went at once, 
not into purgatory, but to hell, to be tormented — the latter 
into Abraham's bosom, to be comforted. See Luke xvi. 19, 
to the end. I find St. Paul saying of believers, that l when 



8 THE ROMAS CATHOUC SCHOOLMASTER. 

absent from the body ' they are « present with the Lord/ 2 
Cor. v. 8 ; but the Lord we know is not in purgatory. I find 
again a Toice from heaven commanding John to write, 
' Blessed are the dead which die in the Lord from henceforth : 
Tea, saith the Spirit, that they may rest from their labors; 
and their works do follow them/ Rev. xiv.. 13 ; and purga- 
tory, if there be such a place, is not a place of rest. But, 
more than this, the Scriptures plainly teach us that we do not 
require any suffering whatsoever upon our own part to obtain 
pardon of our sins, and to entitle us to enter into the king- 
dom of heaven ; for I read, ' Christ hath once suffered lor 
sins, the just for the unjust, that he might bring us to God/ 
1 Pet. iii. 18 : * The blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth 
us from all sin/ 1 John i. 7 : ' He is the propitiation for our 
sins j and not for ours only, but also for the sins of the whole 
world/ 1 John ii. 2 : k Though your sins be as scarlet, they 
shall be as white as snow ; though they be red like crimson, 
they shall be as wool/ Isa. i. IS : 4 For by grace are ye saved, 
through faith ; and that not of yourselves : it is the gift of 
God/ Eph. ii. 8. And that money can have nothing to do 
. with our salvation, either directly or indirectly, is very evi- 
dent from Peter's language : ' Thy money perish with thee, 
because thou hast thought that the gift of God may be pur- 
chased with money/ Acts viii. 20 ; and, * Forasmuch as ye 
know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as 
silver and gold, but with the precious blood of Christ, as of a 
lamb without blemish and without spot/ 1 Pet. i. 18. Believe 

me, JT M ," I added, " that if you trust simply in 

the blessed Son of God for the salvation of your soul : if the 
eye of your mind is fixed and the hope and the love of your 
heart are fastened upon Him who died for your sins, and rose 
again for your justification, you need have no fear of a purga- 
tory after death ; for it is written, ' There is therefore now no 
condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk 
not after the flesh, but after the Spirit/ Bom. viii. 1 ; and, 
again, our Lord himself says, ' He that heareth my word, and 
believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall 
not' come into condemnation ; but is passed from death unto 
life/ John v. 24." 

After this we parted, but not until I had prayed with him 



THE EOMAN CATHOLIC SCHOOLMASTER. 9 

that the Lord would give him the Holy Spirit to guide him 
into all truth. 

In about a week after this last conversation, J M 

came to me to say that his mind was now made up, and that 
he would come to church upon the following Sunday. He 
did so ; and never shall I forget the impression which was 
evidently made upon his mind by the contrast between the 
simple prayers he heard and the lifeless service in an unknown 
tongue to which he had been accustomed. 

Immediately after the taking of this decisive step, the storm 
of persecution commenced against him. His character was 
vilified : the Roman Catholic people of the village were for- 
bidden by the priests, under the severest penalties, to send 
their children to his school, to sell him any articles of food or 
clothing, or to hold any intercourse with him whatever ; and 
his appearance in the street was the signal for shouting, and 
hissing, and calling the most approbrious names. To do them 
justice, however, there were several of the more respectable 
Roman Catholics of the place who openly expressed their dis- 
approbation of the treatment of a man who had done no more 
than act according to the dictates of his own conscience ; and 
as he was employed by many Protestants to give instruction 
to their children, he was able for some time to withstand the 
storm, under which he exhibited the meek and forgiving spirit 
of a true disciple of the Saviour. After a while he became 
united in marriage to a pious and respectable young woman, 
who had long been a pupil in the Sunday-school, in which he 
also became a teacher. 

Feeling, however, as he did, how great the privilege and 
how unspeakable the comfort which he now enjoyed, his soul 
burned within him to be instrumental in delivering others 
from the darkness in which he had himself been nurtured, 
and of the depth of which he was now so fully aware ; and 
being naturally of an ardent spirit, he began, ere long, to avail 
himself of every opportunity to set before the people of the 
village the errors of their own system, as well as the con- 
trasted truth of the doctrines of the glorious gospel. All this 
time he was a diligent and prayerful searcher of the word of 
God, and his visits to me were frequent, and I trust profitable 
to us both. 

At length, one evening, he came to me in a state of extreme 



10 THE ROMAN CATHOLIC SCHOOLMASTER. 

agitation. ^ " I have come, sir," said he, " to bid you farewell. 
Last evening, as I was returning home, a heavy stone was 
thrown at me, which, had it struck, instead of, through the 
mercy of Grod, only grazing my head, would probably have 
deprived me of life. I pursued for some way the two mur- 
derous assassins, who had evidently lain in wait for me ; but 
owing to the darkness of the night, they escaped. This, how- 
ever, is not all : as I was sitting afterwards at a table with my 
wife in our little apartment, going over with her the portion 
of Scripture which I had previously been reading with you, 
the window-frame was suddenly dashed in, and a huge stone 
fell upon the table between us. My poor wife, who is in a 
delicate state of health, fainted, and I greatly fear has received 
an injury from the shock which she sustained ; and her brother 
came to us this morning to say that a respectable Roman Ca- 
tholic had sent for him, and told him privately that I ought 
to leave this place without delay, as he had good reason to 
know that my life is in imminent danger so long as I continue 
here. For myself, sir," continued he, while the tears started 
to his eyes, " I would not care : I would brave this storm as I 
have braved a former one, knowing that ' the Lord is on my 
side/ and that I need not ' fear what man can do unto me •/ 
but my poor wife, who heard what her brother said, is so terri- 
fied, and has entreated me so urgently to take her anywhere, 
or to do any thing, rather than continue here, although this is 
the place where she was born, that I cannot but comply. I 
remember, sir, the counsel of the Lord Jesus to his disciples — 
meant, I humbly trust, for me also, as one who desires nothing 
but to be a disciple of Him who died for me — ' When they 
persecute you in one city, flee ye into another.' I remember, 
also, his promise, <Lo, I am with you alway;' and I am not 
afraid. And now, sir," he added, "I have three favors to 
request of you : one is, that you will lend me a very small sum 
of money ; for what I shall have after paying a few debts 
which I owe in the village will scarcely suffice to convey me 
to L — , where I intend to spend a few days with some rela- 
tions of my wife, and perhaps to leave her with them until I 
can procure some employment, and provide her with a home. 
Sir, you may rely upon it that when the Lord provides for me, 
as I know that sooner or later he will do — for he never fails 
those who trust in him — you shall receive back with many 



THE ROMAN CATHOLIC SCHOOLMASTER. 11 

grateful thanks the few shillings (for I need no more) which 
I am under the necessity of asking from you. Another re- 
quest which I have to make is, that you will furnish me with 
a statement in writing of all that you know concerning me j 
and lastly, that you will do me the favor of walking home 
with me, and kneeling with my wife and myself before the 
throne of grace, to ask Grod's blessing on our way; for we are 
resolved upon leaving this village at an early hour in the 
morning." 

These several requests were, as the reader will have gathered 
from the earlier portion of this narrative, complied with, and 

I parted with J M and his wife, little expecting 

that my next meeting with them would be under circum- 
stances so pleasing as those which I have already detailed. 

I must not omit to mention that among the many particu- 
lars which he told me concerning himself at the period of oui 
meeting, one which peculiarly interested me was, that he had 
become a subscriber of one pound annually to the Bible So- 
ciety, as a small token of the great gratitude which he felt to 
it for having been, under the good providence of Grod, instru- 
mental in his conversion. 

This short history of J M seems to me to be 

fraught with important lessons. It furnishes unquestionable 
proof that the prayerful, painstaking searching of the Scrip- 
tures is the divinely appointed mode of seeking to have 
ignorance enlightened, error dissipated, and the soul estab- 
lished in saving and sanctifying truth ; while it supplies most 
interesting evidence of the truth that while those who "live 
godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution/ ' "godliness" 
has, nevertheless, " the promise of the life that now is, and 
of that which is to come ;" and that if we " seek first the 
kingdom of God and his righteousness, all these things " (the 
food and raiment of which our blessed Lord is speaking in 
the preceding verses — see Matt, vi. 25, to the end) " shall be 
added unto us." 



12 THE ROMAN CATHOLIC SCHOOLMASTER. 

GOOD NEWS FOR SINNERS. 

Jesus Christ the righteous is the propitiation for our sins: and not 
for ours only, but also for the sins of the whole world. (Amazing 
mercy !) 1 John ii. 1, 2 ; 1 Peter ii. 24. 

Propitiation for sin ! Divine justice fully satisfied and 
complete, so that no obstacle whatever remains to prevent a 
repentant sinner's acceptance with God ! This is just what a 
poor sinner stands in need of. 

You have been longing, full of restless desire, to know 
whether it were possible that such sins as yours could ever be 
forgiven. Sins committed against light, and against the con- 
viction of your own mind ; against the warnings of conscience, 
or the entreaty of a husband, or wife, or parents, or friends; 
or, it may be, even against the cries of your own children, 
and all in opposition to the word of God. 

Well, poor sinner, desperate as your case may have been, 
there is mercy sufficient to pardon all your guilt, if you will 
but come to the Fountain where pardon is to be found — par- 
don already purchased by Him who is the Propitiation for 
our sins. You cannot possibly be shut out, except by your 
own fault. 

But hark ! Hear the awful and tremendous sentence of an 
insulted Saviour to those who rejected and disdained his 
offered mercy : " Those mine enemies, which would not that 
I should reign over them, bring hither, and slay them before 
me." Luke xix. 27 

Sinner ! this awful sentence awaits you, if you reject the 
mercy now so freely offered by Him who has power to save 
and power to destroy. But it is not his will that any should 
perish; therefore if you perish, the fault will be all your oicn } 
and through the countless ages of eternity you will have to 
mourn that you might have been saved, but you would not. 
Come, then, sinner ! come. The Lord himself invites you. 
come, and take the offered mercy. Strive to enter in ; and 
remember, for your encouragement, that those who seek shall 
find : their success is certain. Praised be the Lord ! 



Nashville, Tenn. : Published by E. Stevenson & F. A. Owen, for the M. E. Church, South. 



No. 43 



THE SICK MAN AND THE PRIEST. 



A YOUNG invalid, condemned by a rapid decline to an early 
death, as, with slow steps and drooping head, he paced his 
darkened chamber, asked himself, in a low voice, this ques- 
tion : " Is there a God ?" The only answer was a deep-drawn 
sigh; and again the young man resumed his walk in silent 
meditation. But at last, as if the expression of his thoughts 
could no longer be restrained, he uttered this exclamation : 
"Ah ! even when I am convinced that he exists, who will tell 
me what he is ? what he would have from me ? what I may 
expect from him ? and what are the relations between us ? O 
God ! if thou art, why wilt thou not reveal thyself to one who 
seeks thee ? But no — thou art invisible, impalpable, inap- 
preciable by any sense, insensible to all my anguish : thy 
name only exists — thou, thou art as nothing. " And the in- 
valid relapsed into a mournful silence. 

The door opened, and a servant, carrying some medicine, 
entered. 

" Charles/' said the young man, " put that down, and listen 
to me." 

" Certainly, sir/' said the man, placing the medicine upon 
a table, and letting his arms fall at his side. " What can I 
do for you, sir V 

" Charles, do you think that there is a God V 

" Sir V 

"Now let 'sir' alone, and tell me frankly what you think 
Do you believe that there is a God V 

" Yes, to be sure." 

" What is he ?" 

"The sun." 

" How !" 

" Yes, the world, the universe — all that exists. 

'And how do you know that V 



?>> 



>) 



2 THE SICK MAN AND THE PRIEST. 

" It is easy enough to know. I say to myself in this way j 
There is the sun, the world, mankind, and all the rest. It is 
certain that all this exists, because I see, and touch, and feel 
it myself. But who has made all this ? It is not by chance : 
because chance — that is saying nothing — chance is neither a 
thing nor a person. To say that chance made the universe, 
is as much as to say that nothing made every thing." 

" Yery well ; but all this only proves that there is a God. 
It does not prove that God is the sun or the moon." 

" You shall see. I say to myself thus : God is not chance, 
but he is rather a being — that is, a spirit of knowledge — or a 
person. It is possible ; but as I do not see it, I do not believe. 
I only believe what I can see. So I see the world : I am, 
therefore, sure that it exists ; and, instead of talking of chance, 
which is nothing, or of a God, whom nobody has seen, I be- 
lieve that those things I see have always existed — in other 
words, that they have made themselves. So I prove that the 
universe is God." 

" The sun, then, is a part of God ?" 

"Yes." 

"The moon, the stars, the earth, mankind, then, are parts 
of God ?" 

"Yes." 

" Then the mud in our streets, the fierce animals in our 
forests, the murderer upon the scaffold — these are God V 

" Yes," hesitated poor Charles, who did not seem to have 
foreseen this conclusion. 

" Therefore, when animals devour each other, when men 
kill one another, it is part of God which devours and kills 
another part ? At this moment, you who think in one way, 
I who think in another, we are two parts of the same God at 
variance. Your God wills, and wills not, at the same time — 
makes, says, and thinks a thousand contradictory things." 

"But, sir, I had not thought of all this; and, to tell you 
the truth, it was in a book at the reading-room that I saw all 
that I had been saying to you. But if you are pleased to 
think otherwise " 

" Well, well, Charles : some one rings — open the door." 

Charles hastily left the room, into which, after a few minutes, 
the physician entered. 

" Well, how are you to-day?" said he. 



THE SICK MAN AND THE PRIEST- 3 

" Not well. I feel that I shall not last much longer." 

11 Pooh, pooh ! Don't frighten yourself for nothing : the 
return of fine weather will do you good. Leave home for the 
south, and you will come back cured." 

" Do you believe so ?" 

" Certainly : that is, unless " 

" I understand. In that case, dear doctor, do me the favor 
to take a seat, and to answer me a question." 

"Willingly. What is it ?" 

" This : Do you think that there is a God ?" 

The doctor raised his, head, and made a sudden movement, 
which sent his chair some inches backward. 

" What an idea !" said he at last. 

11 Come, come : lay aside your medical precautions. I know 
that I shall soon die : I think, therefore, that my question is 
as seasonable as it is to know what sort of physic I shall drink, 
So answer me frankly and promptly, if you please." 

"Be it so, to the extent of my ability. Yes, I am of opi- 
nion that there is a God. I will go farther : I do not think, 
like many, that this God is the material universe. No, I am 
far from being a pantheist : I have sense enough to trace 
effect to cause. To say that the universe makes itself, is as 
wise as to say that the clock in your dining-room made itself, 
and that it winds itself up every eight days. I reason differ- 
ently, and say, It is evidently not man, a limited being, who 
has created life, for he cannot comprehend what it is ; nor is 
it the universe, for this is inert matter. There must there- 
fore be, beyond man and matter, a primary and powerful 
Cause. Again, I find in myself, and in the world, traces of 
intelligence, affection, and justice. The great First Cause 
must therefore be intelligent, loving, and just. There you 
have the idea of a God." 

" Doctor, you forget one thing. The pantheist says that the 
world has always existed, and that, therefore, eternal matter 
need not be created nor organized." 

"I will examine that supposition. If matter is eternal, 
its mode of action is necessary or fixed. Thus, the universe 
has always been what it is, and always will be. If, therefore, 
the universe is immutable, we ourselves, as a part of it, are 
pure machines, and the words which I now pronounce are in- 
voluntary, and as necessary as the existence of the sun. You 



* THE SICK MAN AND THE PRIEST. 

must either admit these and similar absurdities, or renounce 
the principle of the eternity of matter." 

"Dear doctor, I will not dispute; but enlighten me. You 
believe in a God, spiritual, intelligent, good, just-who re- 
wards virtue, and punishes vice ?" 

" Certainly." 

" Well, then, let me tell you that I would rather believe in 
nonentity." 

" Why so V[ said the physician, with a gesture of horror. 
" Because, if God is just, he ought to punish me. I have 
deeply sinned against him." 

" 0, but God is good. He will not be severe with you." 

"Does he love lying?" 

"No." 

" But I have deceived. Does he love intemperance ?" 
"No." 

" But I have been intemperate. I cannot tell you all that 
I have done to offend him." 

" Why, you are not a murderer or a thief?" 
" What ! needs it that to satisfy your God ? I may forget 
him all my life, swear, lie, deceive, hate, be ungrateful, ava- 
ricious, wicked — and all this is nothing in his sight, because 
I have not put my hand in my neighbor's purse, or my dagger 
in his heart ? 0, no, no : the conscience of a dying man 
speaks in another language. It tells me that a lie is an abo- 
minable thing ; and that you, for instance, when you told me, 
as you came in, that my malady was nothing, fell into a serious 
error." 

" But that was to compose you " 

"Yes, it was a pious fraud; but it was an untruth; and 
since your God extends his indulgence so far as to tolerate 
falsehood, intemperance, avarice, vanity, all things but theft 
and murder, I tell you that I cannot, in conscience, believe in 
this God, and that I prefer none to him." 

Our doctor, accused of falsehood by the dying man, who 
dared to tell the truth, asked him nothing more, but speedily 
took his leave.* 

The sick man resumed his solitary walk, and his soliloquy 
ao-ain broke the deep silence. "A God ! That word alone 
has charms for me. Yes : there is a God : I believe it. But 



THE SICK MAN AND THE PRIEST. 5 

where is he ? What would he have me to do ? Who will 
tell me any more ?" 

" What is that ?" said the young man, interrupting him- 
self, and applying his ear to the wall on that side of the 
apartment whence a voice seemed to proceed. 

" In scecula sceculorum," softly pronounced the voice of an 
ecclesiastic. 

"Ah, doubtless it is a priest," murmured the invalid, " ad- 
ministering extreme unction to my poor neighbor — nearer 
death, possibly, than myself But, now I think of it, I will 
consult him." 

" Charles," cried he. 

" Sir ?" said Charles, opening the door. 

" The cure of the parish is next door : I hear him. Watch 
for him when he leaves, and request him to step in here. I 
have something to say to him." 

Charles went out, fulfilled his commission, and Monsieur le 
Cure was soon seated in the chair recently occupied by the 
physician. 

" Monsieur le Cure," said the invalid, " permit me to come 
to the point without preamble : a dying man has no time to 
lose. I do not ask you whether you believe in the existence 
of a God: but I ask what reasons you have for your be- 
lief?" 

" The Church has said so." 

" It is something besides the Church — it is the opinion of 
a certain number of men ; but that is not enough." 

" No ; but it is good authority. Besides, if you want other 
evidence, accept the unanimous consent of all nations. In all 
ages of the world mankind have recognized a Creator. Men 
differ in their estimate of the nature of the Supreme, but all 
acknowledge that there is a God." 

" Thank you, Monsieur le Cure. I am not disposed to con- 
test the existence of a God : it is here that I want your en- 
lightenment : What must I expect from God ? What ought 
I. to do, ere I appear before him ? It is with fear that I pro- 
pose this question, for I feel that he cannot be satisfied with 
my past life." 

" You must confess." 

"And then " 



" I will give you absolution from your sins 



>y 



6 THE SICK MAN AND THE PRIEST. 

"And then " 

"You must perform some good works and penances." 

" What next ? 

" You shall receive extreme unction." 

"And then— what then ?" 

" You will go to purgatory." 

"To purgatory? to suffer for thousands of years ?" 

" To abridge the duration of your sufferings, you must cause 
masses to be said." 

" I would rather go straight to paradise." 

" Impossible ! — unless you were a saint ; or, indeed, unless 
numberless masses " 

" No, Monsieur le Cure. No — all this will not content me. 
A saint I am not, and I fear there are few upon earth. Con- 
fession to man, pardon from man, penances imposed by man, 
masses said by man, are all vain. God cannot be satisfied 
with a confession which does not change me — with penances 
which only cost me hours of fatigue — and with masses which 
may be said for the veriest wretch at five francs apiece." 

" But the Church has received her power from God him- 
self; and I can prove it to you." 

" Never ! Your proofs must be stronger and more nume- 
rous, ere they can disturb the conclusions at which I have ar- 
rived concerning God ; and I feel that when you have confessed 
and absolved me, even when a million of masses have been 
said for me, I shall be no better off." 

"Lead a holy life, and God will take it into the account." 

" Lead a holy life, do you say ? Time fails me : I am 
dying !" 

" But, during the hours which remain to you, perform some 
good works to atone for the past." 

"Ah ! how can the good works of to-morrow atone for the 
faults of yesterday ? All that I can do will scarcely suffice 
for the future : the past is irredeemable." 

" Repentance will blot out your sins before God." 

"In that case, the vilest malefactors are safe; for they are 
sorry for what they have done when they come to the foot of 
the scaffold." 

" But Jesus Christ died for you. He is the victim who ex- 
piates our sins." 

" Is that true ?" said the sick man, as if struck by this idea. 



8 THE SICK MAN AND THE PRIEST. 

11 Listen : I believe there is a God ; for all nature speaks 
of him. All men believe in him : even the atheist who pro- 
fesses to deny him, and the wretch who breaks his laws. 
But this God — what is he ? I know not. To tell you the 
truth, I never thought about it until now. But, in the ap- 
proach of death, my spirit is possessed by the idea. I cannot 
get rid of it — I cannot understand it. All that is said to me 
leaves my soul in darkness, my heart in trouble; and con- 
science tells me it is not the truth." 

" My dear friend, I know not what has been told you — I 
do not wish to know. But if you will permit me, I will 
tell you my own experience : and perhaps — but listen." 

" I will." 

" Some years since, I was in the state of mind in which I 
find you now — seeking truth, and seeking it in vain. One 
day, having called upon a person of rank who was not yet 
to be seen, I was obliged, against my will, to wait in the ante- 
chamber. To pass away the time, I looked around me for 
some object of amusement. Upon a small table I perceived 
an open Bible. I seated myself before it. The words which 
first caught my attention were those pronounced by Jesus 
when expiring on the cross : " Father, forgive them ; for they 
know not what they do/ A new and sudden light broke in 
upon me. The sight of one torn by nails, pierced by a lance, 
deafened by the mocking cries of the populace, laden with in- 
sults by the great of the earth — this Being, hopeless even 
of being heard by his enemies, praying the Father to for- 
give his murderers ! This scene appeared to me too sub- 
lime to have been invented by mere humanity, and its Hero 
too noble to have been an impostor. He must have told 
the truth in declaring himself to be the Son of God. This 
half-confidence which I gave to Jesus caused me to turn 
my attention to another page, on which I read these words : 
' My blood, which is shed for many for the remission of sins.' 
Jesus praying for his murderers had enlightened my mind ; 
Jesus dying for sinners now touched my heart. But who 
were the ' many' of whom he spoke? On what conditions 
could the benefit of his sacrificial death be applied ? I re- 
volved these thoughts in my mind as I continued to turn 
over the leaves; and I saw these words : i God so loved the 
world, that he gave his .only-begotten Son, that whoso 



THE SIOK MAN AND THE PRIEST. 9 

ever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting 
life/ 

" 'Whosoever/ said I to myself: I am 'whosoever:' none 
can desire more than I do to trust in that God who 'so 
loved the world.' 

"As I compared the two passages which had so enlight- 
ened me, a new illumination seemed to spring from them. 
The death of Christ, of which I had so often heard, as an 
expiation, had always hitherto appeared to me as harshness 
on the part of God, who caused the punishment of the 
guilty to fall upon the innocent. The sacrifice was doubt- 
less a voluntary one on the part of the victim ; but the pain- 
ful impression of a Judge accepting, like an implacable creditor, 
the payment of a debt from one who owed nothing, had ever 
occupied my mind. Now I remarked, for the first time, that 
this voluntary sufferer was the Son of God. God, in accept- 
ing his sacrifice, imposed upon himself as hard a sacrifice — 
that of his own Son. I now saw in Jesus the representative 
of God and man — the union of the Judge and the criminal 
— the embrace of justice and mercy; and, although much 
still appeared to my mind mysterious, my heart was satis- 
fied. I now saw the Father and the Son working together 
for my salvation ; the Creator of all things, as it were, de- 
scending from his throne to give me eternal life — me, the 
vilest of his creatures. God, what shall I give thee in re- 
turn ? What have I done for thee, who has done every thing 
for me V 

" Then," said the invalid, " from that time to the present, 
you have not doubted that you have eternal life V 

"I have not." 

" Then there is no fear of losing that of which God has 
once assured you V 

" Not so, my friend : I am not of those who think so. 

" But are you not in danger of spiritual pride on account 
of this assurance of pardon ? 

" How can I be proud of a forgiveness which only makes 
my guilt appear more flagrant ? How can I boast myself of 
a grace which proclaims that I had merited nothing ? No, 
my friend : the greatness of this salvation is, on the con- 
trary, a motive for humility. The word of God says we are 
s saved by grace, lest any man should boast/ " 
16 



THE SICK MAN AND THE PRIEST. 7 

" Certainly/' replied the priest, pleased to have discovered 
at last the way to his heart. " Believe in Jesus Christ, and 
you will be saved." 

"What ! will it suffice for me only to believe?" 

" No, that will not suffice : good works and the sacraments 
are also necessary." 

" But do you not see, sir, that it is mockery to talk to me 
of these ? I repeat that I have no time for good works ; and 
if I had time, I have not courage. I am convinced that there 
is no hope for me. In spite of my penances, in spite of your 
masses, I shall go to everlasting torments !" 

"But, sir " 

" No, I tell you. All you say is repugnant to my spirit 
and revolting to my heart. It leaves my conscience in misery. 
Farewell : I would rather believe in nothing, than hope in 
your God, whose greatest favor would be to suffer me to burn 
in purgatory." 

At this moment, a light tap was heard at the door, and im- 
mediately a person of plain appearance and composed counte- 
nance presented himself. The cure seized this opportunity 
for retiring; and the moment he departed, the invalid, so 
weak and depressed the instant before, exclaimed, as he 
threw himself into the stranger's arms : 

"What, is it you, Edward? And where are you come 
from ? It is an age since I have seen you !" 

" I am just come from abroad. But answer me : What is 
that priest doing here ?" 

" My dear friend, my face ought to tell you." 

" You do, indeed, look very ill." 

" Yes, but I shall not long look thus." 

" You expect, then " 

" To die." 

" Well, my friend, I would not rob you of one salutary 
thought. It was then of death you were speaking with the 
priest ?" 

" Yes." 

" And what did he say to you ?" 

" Nothing to satisfy me." 

" What is needed to satisfy you ?" 

"Impossibility." 

" Explain yourself." 



10 THE SICK MAN AND THE PRIEST. 

"And this salvation makes you happy?" 
" I will not say that my happiness is perfect— but I ma; 
assure you that the certainty of the forgiveness of my sins 
and of everlasting life, if I continue faithful, causes me tc 
feel cheerfulness, peace, and joy, unmingled with any feelino 
of impatience or dread. I wait until God shall be pleased fc 
call me to himself; satisfied, until then, to abide on earth 
and to relate to others my own happy experience; and I have 
done so even now, in the hope that you also will attain this 
great blessing of which I speak." 

" May God grant it ! But I must own to you, that while 
I assent to all that you have said, and feel disposed to believe 
it, there is in my mind a contrary influence— a voice that tells 
me all this is too good to be true." 

" My friend, that is the voice of Satan." 
" Very likely; but how shall I get conviction ?" 
" Pray to God for light, and read his word." 
" Pray ? I cannot." 
" I will pray for you, then." 

"And read the Bible ; for I have not strength now." 
"Let us unite in prayer, and then I will read a chapter." 
The sick man fell on his knees beside his friend, who 
poured out his soul in fervent prayer. The heart of the 
invalid was touched; and from time to time the word 
"Amen" fell from his lips with earnestness. 

Edward afterwards read aloud the third chapter of St. 
John's Gospel, and the friends separated. 

The presentiments of the sick man, who was in the last 
stage of consumption, had not deceived him. A few weeks 
later he was dying. His faithful Charles wept in silence at 
the foot of his bed. The doctor slowly poured into a glass a 
few drops of cordial. The cure had arrived in the hope of 
inducing him to accept the succors of the Church ; and the 
invalid, lying upon the bed from which he would never more 
rise, turned his languid looks from one to another of the spec- 
tators. 

" Your calmness," said the doctor at last, " surprises me ; 

particularly when I think on the distress in which I saw 

you a month since. But swallow a few drops of this cordial." 

" It is quite superfluous; and I feel that I can better 

employ the time that remains, if you will listen to me." 



THE SICK MAN AND THE PRIEST. 11 

u True/' interposed the priest, " the moments are precious ; 
and, if you will permit me, I will now receive your confes- 
fession, and " 

" No more of that, Monsieur le Cure ; but if you will lend 
me your attention for a few minutes, I will thank you. Will 
you both be seated ? and you, Charles, attend. The words of 
a dying man are always worth hearing. 

" You are aware, my friends, in what a state of anguish 
you found me a month since ; and you also see the calmness 
which I now enjoy. I doubt not that it will please you to 
understand the reason of the change ; and, better still, it may 
do you good." 

The doctor and the priest brought their chairs nearer ; and 
Charles leaned upon the bolster, that his master might not 
have to speak too loud. The dying man resumed : — 

" You are all assured that, in this momentous hour, I can 
have no interest in deceiving you ; and that I feel too near the 
presence of God to dare to hide the truth. Listen then, with 
confidence, to a voice that will soon be for ever silent, but 
which is animated by a spirit that is shortly to ascend to the 
skies. Yes, to heaven, my friends : I know it ; for there is 
in my heart an unerring witness that tells me so. You will 
recollect that my anguish proceeded from my desire of life, 
and my fear of being condemned before God. Well, to-day 
that desire is satisfied, and that fear has vanished. God has 
pardoned all my sins, and has given me eternal life : not that 
I merit now, more than I did a month since, this gift and this 
forgiveness, but only because Jesus has died for me, and I 
believe in him. And I know it — I feel it — I am certain of it. 
My confidence surprises you, I see. I can only repeat to you 
the same thing. I am certain of it, because a divine assur- 
ance — the Holy Spirit, descended into my heart — is my wit- 
ness. Yes, my friends, my thirst of life, and the gnawings 
of my conscience, at last conducted me to the truth. I bowed 
my knees. For the first time I really prayed to God ; and 
God, by his Holy Spirit, applied these words to my conscience : 
' Come unto me, all ye that labor and are heavy-laden, and I 
will give you rest/ ' God so loved the world, that he gave 
his only-begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should 
not perish, but have everlasting life/ I responded to this ap- 
peal, without delay, without hesitation, without reserve. T 



12 THE SICK MAN AND THE PRIEST. 

cast myself into the arms of my God, asking him for grace 
and pardon ; and Grod has forgiven me. He has assured me 
of it in my soul; and he shows it to you by this tranquillity 
which astonishes you, and the joy which I express. Yes, joy ; 
for now, whether I live or die, it matters not — I have secured 
my salvation. I shall live here or in eternity/' 

"And where have you found all these ideas V said the 
doctor. 

" Yes, where V added the priest. 

" There !" solemnly replied the dying man, placing, with 
a last effort, his hand on a small volume lying on his bed. 
That word and that movement were his last. He was no 
more. 

The doctor seized the volume, opened it, and read aloud 
the title: "The New Testament of our Lord Jesus 
Christ." The priest took it in his turn, turned over a few 
of the leaves, and read these words which fell under his eyes : 

" No man cometh unto the Father but by me. 

u Who said that V asked the doctor quickly. 

" Jesus Christ." 



Nashville, Tenn. : Published by E. Stevenson & F. X. Oven, for the M. K. Church, South. 



;/ 



No. U. 



WRY DOES YOUR PRIEST FORBID 
YOU TO READ THE BIBLE? 



FROM THE FRENCH OF N. ROUSSEL. 



A short time ago, a colporteur, who sold religious books in 
one of our large towns, was going along the streets, and met 
with a passenger, to whom he offered a New Testament. 
The offer was declined, because the man said his priest had 
forbidden him to read this book ; whereupon the following 
conversation took place : — 

Colporteur. Why does your priest forbid you to read the 
Bible or the New Testament ? 

Man. I do not know. 

Col. Many other ministers recommend it, and there is no 
doubt but your priest himself acknowledges that this book 
was written by the apostles of Jesus Christ — that it is in- 
spired — that it is the basis of the Christian religion — that it 
is, in short, the word of God. 

Man. I have heard many good Catholics say as much ; but 
still, as I told you, I have received this prohibition, and I do 
not know the reasons. 

Col. Would you not like to know them ? 

Man. Certainly. 

Col. Very well : attend to me for a few minutes, and I will 
try to explain the matter. You must see with me that for 
priests to forbid the reading of a book which they preach 
from in the pulpit, which they own as the foundation of the 
Christian religion, and which they recognize as the word of 
God, is very inconsistent. One may say to your priest : 
" Either what you teach us is agreeable to the word of God, 
or it is not. If it be according to the New Testament, then 



2 WHY DOES YOUR PRIEST EORBID YOU 

you need not fear to lay open the book before us : if it be 
contrary to it, your teaching is a lie ; for it is opposed to the 
word of God, which is true." 

Man. Your argument seems to me sound. 

Col. And yet your priest forbids you to read the Bible ! 

Man. He does. 

Col. Does not this lead you at once to suspect that it is 
because there is some difference between what he teaches you 
and the teaching of the Bible ? 

Man. I admit this; but then suspicion must not pass for 
proof, and I would sooner trust my priest than my own 
doubts. 

Col. Yery good ; but would you sooner trust your priest 
than God himself? 

Man. Certainly not. 

Col. Well, then, compare the word of your priest with the 
word of God, and see if they agree or differ. 

Man. But how can I make this comparison ? Am I not 
too ignorant? 

Col. Can you read ? 

Man. yes. 

Col. That is enough. Take this Bible in your hand, and 
find out the places as I name them, and then you will be 
convinced. But, first, what do you want to know ? 

Man. I should like to know what reasons my priest has for 
prohibiting me from reading the New Testament ? 

Col. Is your priest married ? 

Man. You know, as well as I do, that our priests are not 
permitted to marry. 

Col. Does your priest allow meat to be eaten on Fridays, 
and Saturdays, and during Lent ? 

Man. That, too, is forbidden by our ecclesiastics. 

Col. Very well : now open the New Testament at the First 
Epistle of Paul to Timothy, fourth chapter, first verse. How 
do you read ? 

Man. Here is the place you named : " Now the Spirit 
speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart 
from the faith forbidding to marry, and commanding to 

abstain from meats. " 

Col. Does this prophecy apply to your priests ? 

Man. Why, it must be admitted they do not marry, and 



TO READ THE BIBLE ? 3 

they forbid meats. It may be supposed that it is of them the 
Holy Spirit speaks. You think ; then, that ecclesiastics ought 
to marry as we do ? 

Col. Turn over to the second verse of the third chapter in 
the same epistle, and read. 

Man. It is written : " A bishop, then, must be blameless ; 
the husband of one wife." This passage is conclusive. 

Col. Do you understand a little more clearly why you are 
forbidden to read a book wj^iich contains such words ? 

Man. Yes; but this motive alone is not sufficient. I want 
many others. 

Col. You shall have them. What use do you make of the 
necklace of black beads which you take to church with you? 

Man. It is a rosary. Our priests require us to repeat 
certain prayers over as many times as there are beads on this 
chain : in hope that these prayers, repeated so many times, 
will procure from God the grace which we need. 

Col. Open, I pray you, the Gospel according to Matthew, 
chapter sixth, verse seventh, and read. 

Man. Here it is : " But when ye pray, use not vain repeti- 
tions, as the heathen do; for they think that they shall be 
heard for their much speaking," etc. 

Col. In what tongue do you repeat those prayers you count 
on the rosary ? 

Man. The Latin. 

Col. Do you understand the language ? 

Man. No : it is an unknown tongue. 

Col. Open now the First Epistle of Paul to the Corinthians, 
chapter fourteenth, and read verses fourteenth and nineteenth : 
u If I pray in an unknown tongue, my spirit prayeth, but my 
understanding is unfruitful. Yet in the church I had 

rather speak five words with my understanding, that by my 
voice I might teach others also, than ten thousand words in 
an unknown tongue." 

Man. I must confess that St. Paul seems to be right. 

Col. If so, your priest must be 

Man. Wrong, it is true. 

Col. Let us go on. How are the walls of your churches 
ornamented ? 

Man. They are covered with pictures. We have repre- 
sentations of saints and statues — generally the likenesses of 



4 WHY DOES YOUR PRIEST FORBID YOU 

Christ on the cross. We bow before these and say our 
prayers. 

Col. Open your Bible at Exodus, chapter twenty, verses 
four and five. 

Man. It is written : " Thou shalt not make unto thee any 
graven image, or any likeness of any thing that is in heaven 
above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water 
under the earth : thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, 
nor serve them/' etc. 

Col. In order that God may be favorable to your prayers, 
whose mediation do you employ ? 

Man. That of the saints usually. 

Col. Look in the New Testament, First Epistle to Timothy, 
chapter second, verse five. 

Man. " There is one G-od, and one Mediator between God 
and men, the man Christ Jesus/ ' 

Col. Of what use is the mass to those who attend it ? 

Man. The mass is a bloodless sacrifice of Jesus Christ, who 
obtains the pardon of sin for those who devoutly unite in it. 

Col. Then the sacrifice of Christ has been daily repeated for 
the last eighteen centuries, and that many millions of times ? 

Man. Yes : according to my priest. 

Col. Look to the Hebrews, chapter ninth, verses twenty- 
fifth to twenty-eighth. 

Man. Here is the passage : " Nor yet that he should offer 
himself often, as the high-priest entereth into the holy place 
every year with the blood of others ; for then must he often 
have suffered since the foundation of the world ; but now 
once in the end of the world hath he appeared to put away 
sin by the sacrifice of himself," etc. 

Col. Do you now understand why your priest forbids you 
to read a book which declares such things ? 

Man. I see your meaning. You think that my priest is 
afraid that I should find out the differences there are between 
his teaching and the word of God. I do acknowledge that 
this fear does appear to me to be well-founded, by what I have 
just read : at the same time, suffer me to make an objection 
In reading the Bible I may mistake, and give a false meaning 
to these words, while my priest, better informed than I am, i* 
more competent to judge. Perhaps this is his reason for not 
wishing me to read the Bible without his explanations. 



TO READ THE BIBLE ? 5 

Col. But do you think that the epistles of the Apostles 
were originally addressed to well-educated priests ? Do we 
not see, on the contrary, that St. Paul wrote his letters to the 
whole Church, in which, as he says to the Corinthians, there 
were not many learned, not many powerful, not many noble ? 
And yet St. Paul wrote largely to this people, that they might 
read and understand. In the book of the Acts the saints at 
Berea are commended, because they searched the Scriptures 
closely, to see if what Paul himself wrote agreed with them. 
Besides, does not your own good sense tell you, that if you 
cannot understand the Bible, you are not more sure of under- 
standing the words of your priest ? Why should you better 
understand the explanations of a man than the words of 
Jesus Christ ? Is there more clearness in the mind of a priest 
than in the mind of God ? 

Man. That is very fair. Let me, however, make one more 
remark. I am forbidden to read the Bible by my priest, a 
man I much esteem. You, who are a stranger to me, tell me 
to read it. Why should I follow your advice rather than that 
of my natural guide ? 

Col. Your objection is candid. You ought not to be 
governed by my word : I am an erring, sinful man ; but if, 
in my stead, God were here, and spoke to you, would you 
believe him ? 
Man. I certainly would. 

Col. Well, listen once more : God is about to speak to you 
himself. Turn to three passages : John v. 39 ; 2 Tim. iii. 
16; Dent. vi. 6-8. 

Man. Here they are: "Search the Scriptures; for in 
them ye think ye have eternal life/' etc. "All Scripture is 
given by inspiration of God," etc. " These words which I 
command thee this day, shall be in thy heart ; and thou shalt 
teach them diligently untcr thy children, and shalt talk of 
them when thou sittest in thy house, and when thou walkest 
by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest 
up," etc. I see that these commands of God to read his 
Word are plain and authoritative. 

Col Well now, think of them seriously. If you refuse to 
read the Bibie't is not the counsel of a man that 1™**$™} 
it is a command of God, which you trample upon knowingly 

and wilfully. 
16* 



6 WHY DOES YOUR PRIEST FORBID YOU 

The passenger bowed and was silent. 

Reader, you are the passenger. It is to you these closing 
words are addressed. If you refuse to read the Bible, it will 
not be the counsel of man that you despise ; it is a command 
of God, which you trample upon knowingly and wilfully. 
To-day you have the opportunity to read the word of God ; if 
you refuse to study the sacred volume, then to you these ter- 
rible words belong : " This is the condemnation, that light is 
come into the world, but men have loved darkness rather than 
light/' But if you determine to search the Scriptures, then 
these words, so sweet to the ears of a poor sinner, are 
addressed to you : " The Son of man is come to seek and to 
save that which was lost." "When we were yet sinners, 
Christ died for us." But if you inquire again, what you shall 
do to obtain the forgiveness provided in the gospel by Jesus 
Christ, the Bible replies, " Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, 
and thou shalt be saved." Bo you ask, How shall I believe ? 
The Bible answers, " Faith is the gift of God." " Whatso- 
ever ye shall ask the Father in my name, he will give it you." 
But it may be you will still say, " That is not enough : I 
must not only be pardoned, but I must live a better life in 
future, and I am afraid that my sinful inclinations will again 
draw me into sin." 

Very well, dear reader : the Bible, which has answered all 
your other questions, tells you also that " If any man lack 
wisdom, he should ask it of God." Thus, then, you must 
see and acknowledge your state as a sinner. Believe in 
Christ, pray to God for the Holy Spirit, and rest assured that 
all the promises of God will be fulfilled in your experience. 



WHO ARE SINNERS? 



All are sinners, and exposed to eternal death. 

Bo not think that only gross and abandoned sinners are 
meant. Deceive not yourself! All are indeed sinners, and 
in need of the atonement of Christ, and of rcconrili:iti<m 
through him. All — not only the openly wicked and profane, 
but the moral and the apparently upright. All need the 



TO READ THE BIBLE ? 7 

atoning blood of Christ, or they must perish everlastingly. 
The apostle says to the Romans, (iii. 10,) "There is none 
righteous, no, not one :" again, (iii. 23,) "All have sinned, 
and come short of the glory of God;" and thus having 
sinned, we must be justified (reckoned as righteous) by a free 
gift of mercy, not by any merits or works of our own. " In 
many things we offend all." James iii. 2. " Whosoever 
shall keep the whole law, and yet offend in one point, he is 
guilty of all." James ii. 10. 

With these declarations of Scripture before us, let not our 
self-love whisper to us that toe are safe while impenitent and 
unbelieving ; and remembering that the breaking of one 
command, the leaving of but one duty undone, the commis- 
sion of but one sin, makes a sinner, let us see in Scripture 
the doom pronounced by God upon all sinners : that thus we 
may fly, while we have time, to the Saviour of sinners for his 
free gift of mercy. " The wrath of God is revealed from 
heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, 
who hold the truth in unrighteousness." Rom. i. 18. 
" To be carnally minded is death." Rom. viii. 6. " The 
wages of sin is death." Rom. vi 28. The wicked "shall have 
their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone : 
which is the second death." Rev. xxi. 8. 

But those who have believed in Christ, who have come to 
him for salvation, must be " careful to maintain good works." 
Tit. iii. 8. Why this, if we are saved by grace, not of good 
works ? This is not to purchase salvation, but this results 
essentially from the grace that saves us. By this we show 
whose followers we are : a tree is known by its fruit, and " the 
fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, goodness, faith." Gal. 
v. 22. "Proving what is acceptable unto the Lord." Eph. 
v. 10. " The love of Christ constraineth us." 2 Cor. v. 14. 
" Ye are not your own ; for ye are bought with a price : 
therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, 
which are God's." 1 Cor. vi. 19, 20. Christ is our example : 
he says, " I am the light of the world : he that followeth me 
shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life." 
John viii. 12. " My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, 
and they follow me." John x. 27. "If any man serve me, 
let him follow me." John xii. 26. 



8 



WHY DOES YOUR PRIEST FORBID YOU, ETC. 
THE NOBLE BEREANS. 

BY C. WESLEY. 



Bony of them believed.-Acis xvii. 11, 12 tLmg8 were ■* Thc«foi« 

Can we in unbelievers find 

That noble readiness of mind 

To hear, investigate, and prove, 

The truth of Jesus' pard'ning love ? 

Yes, Lord : through thy preventing grace, 

The-e are who cordially embrace 

The joyful news of sin forgiven, 

With God himself sent down from heaven. 

Up from the sleep of nature stirr'd, 
They daily search thy written word ; 
Inquiring if these things be so, 
To thine own oracles they go : 
Thine oracles the answer give, 
And willing multitudes believe 
The gospel by thy Spirit seal'd, 
And find thy glorious Self reveal'd. 

What then are they that dare forbid 
The unconvinced thy book to read ? 
Who take the sacred key away, 
Damp their desire to search and pray ? 
Conceal thy records from their view — 
" The Scriptures were not wrote for you : 
Accept your more unerring guide — 
The Church, the Catholics — the bride!" 

Turn, sinners, turn from such away, 

And rather God than man obey : 

The Scriptures search both day and night, 

And try if what ye hear be right : 

Put forth your grain of gracious power, 

(Your use of that shall bring ye more,) 

'Till the true Light himself impart, 

And breathes, the Witness, in your heart. 



Nashrille, Tenn. : Published by B, Stevenson & F. A. Owen, for the M. E. Church, Soutk 



No. 45. 



THE HISTOBY OF A PIECE OF WOOD. 



FROM THE FRENCH OF N. ROUSSEL. 



"To the sea! to the sea !" "No : to the gallows upon tho 
Place Royale, to serve as an example for all heretics !" u No : 
let us make him leap over this rock to the bottom of the 
precipice ! the crows will have time to avenge the good 
Mother I" " No : to the sea \" " No : to the gallows !" And 
everybody cried out, and pressed around the poor stranger, 
bruised with blows from the feet of the men, torn by the 
nails of the women. He went out from the chapel of the Vir- 
gin, where they said he had uttered a horrible blasphemy. Two 
monks led him to the dungeon of the Holy Inquisition. What 
was his crime ? Let us follow the crowd, and we shall soon 
know. Whether from humanity, or the desire to preserve their 
prey for the next auto da fe, the two conductors did their best 
to protect the unfortunate man from the mischief the people 
would have done him in their fury ; and they brought him at 
last to the court of the awful tribunal, which was then sitting. 
The people cried out constantly : they even threatened to enter 
by main force, if they did not punish him immediately for the 
outrage done to the Madonna. In order to appease them, the 
grand inquisitor imagined that nothing would be better than 
to announce to the agitated populace, by one of his familiars 
placed on the great balcony of the palace, that the holy tri- 
bunal was about to be informed at once on this ma "^ e ^, e 
to pronounce judgment on the guilty— he meant 
of death. Repeated and noisy hurrahs followed ^sejord^ 
While the people indulge themselves with this ] y ^^ 
pleasant hope, we will follow the unknown Deioi ^^ when 
Scarcely had he entered, accompanied by of ttie tw0 

the president is informed of the crime, ana , The 

fathers speaks thus :— " This man is guilty 01 u v 



2 THE HISTORY OF A PIECE OF WOOD. 

faithfuly assembled in the chapel of our Lady, prostrated 
before her, adored in silence. A priest prayed at the foot of 
the altar : the young attendants waved their censers in her 
presence : the organ played a hymn which was going to be sum* 
in her honor: all were silently gathered : when this stranger) 
this heretic, this child of Satan, perhaps Satan himself, placed 
behind a column, advances pertly to our Holy Mother, raises 
the pure veil which conceals her celestial figure, and in lettino- 
it fall again, and drawing a sigh, exclaims, { The idolaters / 
the poor idolaters !' " Indignation seized all the judges : the 
president could not contain himself. "Who are you*/" cried 
he to the accused. "William Knox, an English sculptor." 
"Whence do you come ?" " From India." " What have you 
to reply to the accusation brought against you ?" " Nothing : 
it is true." " Of whom did you speak, in sayinsr, ' The idola- 
ters !' Of the Indians ?" " No : of you." " Of us I" " Of 
yourselves." A movement of anger passed over the dark 
figures of the inquisitors : the president gnashed his teeth, 
and striking with his fist upon the tribunal, he continued : 
" Do you know that in an hour I can send you to serve as 
straw to light the auto da fe, which is prepared?" " You can 
do what G-od pleases." "Ah, well ! I tell you God wills that 
you should be burned alive : do you hear ?" " That is to say, 
you condemn me without hearing me." "No, no : speak, and 
you shall burn afterward." "Do you hearken, and let God 
judge us. The funeral-pile that you wish to light for me in 
this world would be kindled for you in the other: now listen 
to my justification, and remember that, in deciding upon my 
death, you declare your own sentence." "A truce to menaces : 
speak your defence." "Listen. Some years since, I set out 
as an officer in an English regiment, which was going to India. 
After a month's voyage, our vessel was shipwrecked on ;i 
desert island. The crew and the provisions were .saved ; but 
the ship, damaged in every part, was some days after swallowed 
up from our sight. Reduced to inactivity on this uncultivated 
land, I took a fancy to exercise my skill as a sculptor, hoping 
that Heaven would send us help. I felled a tree, stripped off 
its branches, and, from the long and rounded trunk, made two 
perfectly equal parts. I fashioned both, and at the end of a 
month had made two bodies of a woman, just alike. 31 v work 
was scarcely finished, when the cry, 'A sail ! a sail V struck 



THE HISTORY OF A PIECE OF WOOD. 3 

my ear. A merchant-ship was in sight : our signals were 
perceived, and the next day we were taken on board with 
good-will by her Italian captain. All our crew tried to express 
their gratitude by words, gifts, or promises. As for myself, I 
had lost all, and had no other means of showing my gratitude 
to the captain than by offering my work. He accepted it with 
pleasure. I even saw him smile and stroke his forehead, like 
a man suddenly enlightened by a happy idea. I was happy in 
his happiness, and soon thought no more of my trunk of the 
tree." "What connection has this history with your blas- 
phemy?" interrupted a judge. "Wait. Two years later, I 
visited one of the most renowned pagodas in India, where a 
great number of pilgrims resorted, who came to honor the 
Madonna of the temple, called the Blessed, the Holy, and the 
Very Holy. Entering into the sanctuary of the idol, some- 
thing struck me that it bore a resemblance to the statue which 
I had fashioned with my hands in the unknown island. I 
approach, I look, I touch, and I recognize unmistakably the 
half of my trunk of wood, adored by these poor Indians/' 
"Speak, then, about these poor idolaters," interrupted the 
president. "True; and I cursed the day in which the thought 
of sculpturing this wood had occurred to me. I saw myself 
in some way an accomplice of pagan worship, and I asked 

pardon from Grod" " You pray to Grod ! you, blasphemer 

of his very holy mother ? But come to the point, for your 
Indian history has nothing to do with your crime. Speak 
quickly, for time presses." " I pursued my military service, 
and some years after, returning to Europe, I landed yesterday 
in this town, and the first person I met on the wharf was the 
Italian captain who had received us into his ship. As I told 
him of my unexpected meeting with my work in the Indian 
pagoda, he said to me, with a smile which recalled to me that 
which had accompanied ' his happy idea, that indeed he had 
found no better way of ridiculing these idolatrous priests, than 
of selling them, as "a goddess fallen from heaven, one of the ma- 
donnas of which I had made him a present. ^ I reproached 
the captain for such conduct : he departed with a burst of 
laughter, and said to me on leaving, ' You will see many more 
of them/ Curious by nature, and above all curious to know 
every thing that relales to religious worship, I come this 
morning to visit one of your chapels. I enter, and I observe 



4 THE HISTORY OF A PIECE OF WOOD. 

that looks, incense, adoration, prayers, are all directed towards 
a white drapery, which appears to cover the mysterious object 

of the worship. I approach, I raise the veil, and I see" 

" What do you see V " The sister of the Indian madonna, my 
own work; the other half of my bit of wood !" "Lie ! imposture 1 
Our Lady is descended from heaven !" " Yes, like that of the 
pagoda/' " It is the image of the Very Holy Mother !" " Like 
that of the pagoda." " She merits our adoration !" " Like that 
of the pagoda !" " No : one is an idol — the other is the holy 
image of the Mother of Grod." " They both came out of the same 
trunk of the tree, and with their branches I lighted my fire." 
" But if your history be true, do you not understand that our 
prayers have sanctified the work produced by your heretical 
hands ?" " The Brahmins also made prayers to purify that which 
they bought of the captain." "But it is not the image itself that 
we adore : it is the queen of heaven whom it represents to us." 
" The Indian priest also told me that it was the resemblance of 
the goddess who reigns over the universe." " But, ignorant man, 
do not you understand that the Indian priests are idolaters, 
and that we Catholic priests are worshippers of the true God V 
" I understand still better, that between them and you there 
is no difference, for once this same trunk of a tree, these same 
hands, the same iron, have fashioned." " Silence, blasphemer ! 
you deserve to be burned as an obstinate unbeliever I" " I an 
unbeliever ! I believe in Grod." " You will then be burned 
as a Deist." "I believe in Jesus Christ sent from heaven." 
"You will be burned as a Socinian." "I believe in Jesus 
Christ, the Son of Grod, and Saviour of men." "Yes; but 
you do not believe in the Virgin, and you will be burned as a 
Huguenot." "I believe that the Virgin Mary conceived by 

the Holy Spirit." "Well, you don't" "No, indeed, I 

do not worship a piece of wood any more in Europe than in 
Asia, not more in a chapel than in a pagoda, nor in the 
Romish Church than in Indian worship j and nothing in the 
world will make me bow the knee before the piece of wood 

which I myself" " Silence, heretic !" 

We must also be silent, and hear his sent<race of death. An 
hour after, the stranger walked toward the funeral-pile, along 
with other heretics condemned to the same punishment, and 
the joyous crowd followed them. Already the executioner was 
prepared to attach him to the fatal stake, when the stranger, 



THE HISTORY OF A PIECE OF WOOD. 5 

turning to the people, made a sign with his hand that he 
wished to speak. "Listen ! listen!" cried some voices. "Gag 
him !" said the executioner to one of his assistants. But he 
was too late : the curiosity of the crowd was awakened, and as 
they prepared to close his mouth by main force, the cries 
were redoubled. "No, no ! listen !" Taking advantage of 
the moment, the unknown mounted on the pile, and addressed 
the eager crowd. " They deceive you : believe me, they de- 
ceive you. It is not the religion of Christ which they teach 
you : it is Paganism Christianized. " " Silence ! silence I" 
"Yes, yes: the same Paganism which the Bible anathematizes 
on every page. Open the law of your God, and you will find 
written there, you who prostrate yourselves before wood and 
stone, these words proceeding from the mouth of God : ' Thou 
shalt not make any graven image : thou shalt not bow down to 
them, nor serve them/ Exod. xx. 4, 5. And you, poor pagan 
Catholics, you do as the idolater whom the prophet Isaiah ridi- 
cules. He cuts a tree from the forest : he burns a part of it 
in the fire to warm himself, and to cook the food of which he 
eats ; ' and the residue thereof he maketh a god, even his 
graven image : he falleth down unto it, and worshippeth it, 
and prayeth unto it, and saith, Deliver me ; for thou art my 
God.' " Isa. xliv. 14-19. Furious at the hearing of these 
words, a monk snatches a torch from the hands of the execu- 
tioner, and brings it near to the base of the pile. " No, no !" 
cry the people on all sides, " let us listen to the end." " No !" 
cry other voices, "he is the blasphemer of our good mother, 
whom they compel to kneel before the Virgin, the mother of 
God, the queen of heaven, the source of all the graces." 
"Well, then, listen to this Virgin Mary," interrupted the 
stranger : " listen to her. She herself is going to speak." 
Surprised with this announcement, always ready to believe 
the marvellous, the people imagined that the Virgin Mary was 
about to descend from heaven, to make herself heard. All 
their looks were directed to heaven, to see her arrive ; and the 
malefactor, profiting by the silence, resumed : " Hear what 
the Virgin Mary said — her words are written in the gospel : 
'My spirit hath rejoiced in God my Saviour. For _ he hath 
regarded the low estate of his handmaiden/ Luke i. 47, 48. 
Thus, she whom you adore herself says to you that she was 
drawn from a low estate, and that she is only the handmaiden 



6 THE HISTORY OF A PIECE OF WOOD. 

of the Lord ; and you dethrone God to place his handmaiden 
upon his throne : you keep the Saviour of the world in the 
swaddling-clothes of infancy, to make a woman reign, llestore 
each to his place : God upon his throne, Jesus on his right 
hand, and the Virgin Mary to the class of blessed women who 
bow and worship. Believe in God, who created you : believe 
in Jesus Christ, who can save you ; but place yourselves be- 
side Mary, created and saved like you ! Jesus Christ is the 
Son of God: the Virgin is the daughter of man. Jesus 
Christ is God. Mary is a woman, and if you can understand 
your privileges — if you have courage enough to break the 
yoke of your priests, and to place their words not above the 
gospel, but the gospel above their words, you will see that 
the gospel, the New Testament, the whole Bible condemns 
your idolatry — that everywhere we find in it, Worship God 
alone : believe in Jesus Christ : call upon the Holy Spirit ; but 
that not a single word of worship, faith, or prayer, is required 
from the Virgin Mary. This is what the word of Christ says. 
If you do not wish to hear it, if you only listen to the voice 
of your Catholic Church, you are Catholics, but you are not 
Christians." 

This time the monk succeeded ; and while the crowd, atten- 
tive to these words, forgot all besides, he had set fire to the 
four corners of the pile. The flames suddenly ascended, and 
the fickle multitude, who at all times prefer such spectacles to 
the words of truth, passed very quickly from the impression 
that they had received from this discourse, to the wish to see 
the appearance the martyr would assume in the midst of the 
fire, which already crackled in every part. The unknown 
joined his hands, raised a resigned look toward heaven, and 
his head fell motionless upon his breast. A few minutes re- 
duced his body to ashes; but his soul escaped to go into 
heaven, to contemplate the glory of his God, and to enjoy his 
love, in the midst of the crowd of martyrs, of apostles, and 
by the side of the Virgin Mary. 



THE HISTORY OF A PIECE OF WOOL. 7 

CREATURE-WORSHIP 

"We hear/' says Mr. Browne, "of an early example of an he- 
retical tendency to creature-worship, which seems almost provi- 
dentially to have been permitted, in order that there might 
be an early testimony borne against it. Epiphanius tells us 
that whereas some had treated the Virgin Mary with con- 
tempt, others were led to the other extreme of error, so that 
women offered cakes before her, and exalted her to the dig- 
nity of one to be worshipped. This, he says, was a doctrine 
invented by demons. 'No doubt the body of Mary was holy; 
but she was not a Gk>d.' Again, ' The Virgin was a virgin, 
and to be honored ; yet not given us to be worshipped, but 
herself worshipper of Him who was born of her after the 
flesh ; and who came down from heaven and from the bosom 
of his Father.' He then continues, that ' the words, 'Woman, 
what have I to do with thee ?' were spoken on purpose 
that we might know her to be a woman, and not esteem her as 
something of a more excellent nature, and because our Lord 
foresaw the heresies likely to arise/ Again he says, ' Neither 
Elias, though he never died, nor Thecla, nor any of the saints, 
is to be worshipped.' If the apostles 'will not allow the 
angels to be worshipped, how much less the daughter of 
Anna/ i. e. the blessed Virgin. ' Let Mary be honored, but 
let the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit be worshipped. 
Let no man worship Mary.' 'Therefore though Mary be 
most excellent, holy and honored, yet is it not that she should 
be adored.' 

" Thus early did the worship of the Virgin show itself, and 
thus earnestly did the Christian fathers protest against it. 

" Gregory Nazianzen flourished nearly at the same time 
with Epiphanius, towards the end of the fourth century. 
Archbishop Usher says, that his writings are the first in 
which we meet with any thing like an address to the spirits 
of the dead. It is worth while to see how this is. He ex- 
pressly declares all worship to a creature to be idolatry. He 
positively charges the Arians with idolatry, because they, not 
believing the Son of God to be fully equal and of one sub- 
stance with the Father, yet offered prayers to Him. It is 
plain, therefore, that any address made by him to the departed 
could not be intended to be of the nature of that inferior 



8 THE HISTORY OF A PIECE OF WOOD. 

worship, which the Arians offered to the Son, believing him 
only the chief of the creatures of God. Yet it is clear that 
he believed, though not with certainty, that departed saints 
took an interest in all that passed among their friends and 
brethren on earth. He had even a pious persuasion, that 
they still continued as much as ever to aid with their prayers 
those for whom they had been wont to pray on earth. And 
he ventures to think, if it be not too bold to say so, that the 
saints, being then nearer to God, and having put off the fet- 
ters of the flesh, have more avail with Him than when on 
earth. In all this he does not appear to have gone farther 
than some who preceded him ; nor is there any thing in such 
speculations, beyond what might be consistent with the most 
Protestant abhorrence of saint-worship and Mariolatry." 



THE WAY OF LIFE 

How can we attain everlasting life ? 

Christ says, " I am the way, the truth, and the life : no man 
cometh unto the Father, but by me." John xiv. 6. " I am 
the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved." 
John x. 9. "For God so loved the world, that he gave his 
only-begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not 
perish, but have everlasting life." John iii. 16. " He that 
believeth on the Son hath everlasting life : and he that believ- 
eth not the Son shall not see life ; but the wrath of God 
abideth on him." John iii. 36. "Neither is there salvation 
in any other; for there is none other name under heaven 
given among men, whereby we must be saved." Acts iv. 12. 
"Through his name whosoever believeth in him shall receive 
remission of sins." Acts x. 43. "Through this man is 
preached unto you the forgiveness of sins." Acts xiii. 38. 
Observe the answer of the apostles to the poor jailer eagerly 
inquiring, "What must I do to be saved?" "And they 
said, Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shult be 
saved, and thy house." Acts xvi. 31. We are "justified 
freely by his grace, through the redemption that is m Christ 
Jesus." Rom. iii. 24. 



Nashville, Tenn. : Fubliihed by K. Stevenson & F. A. Owen, for the M. E. Church, South. 



No. 46. 



THE SCAPULAR. 



The Scapular is " an oblong piece of serge or other woollen 
cloth, resembling a flattened pincushion, marked with a cross, 
and the initials I. H. S., and worn suspended from the neck by 
a ribbon." This, when blessed by the priest, is considered to 
be virtually a part of the robe of the Virgin Mary, and is held 
by the Roman Catholics in the highest veneration. 

A treatise called " The Scapular Book" was a few years 
ago reprinted under the cognizance of the Irish Roman hie- 
rarchy, and industriously circulated. The Roman Breviary 
affirms, among other things, that " the Virgin is pledged to 
release the devout of the Scapular, without loss of time, from 
the fiery prison of purgatory." 

This inestimable badge of favor was first bestowed in the 
year 1251, on the 16th of July, in the Carmelite convent at 
Cambridge, upon a man of the name of Simon Stock. " He 
was upon his knees in the oratory," says the book, " when the 
most glorious Virgin, environed with celestial splendor, at- 
tended by thousands of angels, appeared before him; and, 
holding the sacred Scapular in her hand, addressed him thus : 
' Receive, most beloved son, the Scapular of thy order, a sign 
of my confraternity, a privilege both to thee and to all Car- 
melites, in which whosoever dieth, shall not suffer eternal fire. 
Behold the sign of salvation, a safeguard in danger, the co- 
venant of peace and everlasting alliance.' " And " ever 
since the institution," continues the Scapular Book, " it has 
been favored by Almighty G-od with many graces and miracles : 
insomuch that by reason of the sacred Scapular, the sick have 
been cured : persons bewitched and possessed have been freed : 
women in travail have been miraculously assisted. It also 
hath extinguished fire, when cast into flames for that purpose. 
It hath appeased violent tempests, when thrown into the sea 
in times of danger. In fine, it is known by daily experience 
to be a sovereign remedy for all the evils of this life, botli 



I THE SCAPULAR. 

temporal and spiritual : insomuch that the devils have often 
been heard to howl, saying, ' Woe to us, by reason of the 
sacred Scapular of the blessed Virgin Mary of Mount Car- 
mel !' " 

" Why, this outdoes spirit-rapping. Modern quackery has 
done and said wonders; but I see it is a very humble and dis- 
tant imitator. And I suppose 'lying miracles' have not beer 
wanting to give confirmation to the blasphemous nonsense.'' 

Be patient, and you shall hear. Simon, a native of Kent 
when twelve years of age, had withdrawn into one of its 
wealds, where he lived twenty years in the trunk of a hollow 
tree — a circumstance which secured him the surname of 
Stock — subsisting on roots and herbs; except on festival 
days, when an inspired dog, of what description is not J 
think noted, carried him a holiday repast. But this modern 
Elijah was still more favored. The Yirgin Mary, dividing 
her presence between the realms of glory and the bower of 
the young hermit, beguiled his hours with celestial converse. 
So saith the legend. 

"Well; and as to his Scapular?" 

! immediately after its miraculous reception, an opportu- 
nity luckily offered for the purpose of testing its virtues. 
Having occasion to go to Winchester, to transact some busi- 
ness with the bishop, Simon was besought to pay a visit to 
Walter, brother of the Dean of the church of St. Helen's, 
who was dying in a state of distraction. He found him 
grinding his teeth, rolling his eyes, invoking Satan; in fact, 
stark mad : but no sooner did the holy Simon lay the Scapu- 
lar on the maniac, than he was instantly cured ! He made 
confession of his sin, renounced the devil, received the rites 
of the Church, and the same night died in all the odor of 
sanctity ! Nor is this the whole. The Dean had some mis- 
givings as to his brother's salvation — why, does not appear : 
when, to remove his doubts, the dead man visited him, assur- 
ing him that by the virtues of the Scapular he had eluded 
all the snares of the devil, and escaped everlasting damnation ! 

"Bravo! Who but a fool would run the risk of dying 
without a Scapular V 

But there is a more amusing story. It refers to a cir- 
cumstance which happened four hundred years subsequently 
to the time of Simon — precisely on the 10th day of July, 



THE SCAPULAR. 3 

1622 — and you know how much depends upon circumstai 
tiality in such details. A military officer, by name Alexandc 
Dominic, coming that day out of a bath at Avignon, wat 
met by an assassin, who discharged a loaded pistol into the 
unfortunate Chevalier's body. " blessed Virgin of Mount 
Carmel, assist me !" exclaimed the dying man. The word? 
operated like magic; for, strange to say, he had no soonei 
uttered them, than he found the bullets had fallen into a 
lower part of his dress. And upon examination it was dis- 
covered that the holy Scapular, which fortunately he wore 
next his skin, had counteracted the effects of gunpowder, 
and stopped the progress of the instruments of destruction, 
after they had singed his cloak, and passed through his 
doublet and shirt, slipping them harmlessly down into his 
trowsers, to the inexpressible joy of the horrified Alexander 
Dominic ! Sixteen years afterwards occurred another of these 
miraculous attestations. I mean, the Scapular Book says so. 
This was at Toulon. A fire broke out which threatened 
destruction to the whole neighborhood, and which no efforts 
or supply of water could subdue; when the lady of a Mr. 
Richards (here too all is circumstantial) bethought herseli 
of the Scapular, which was no sooner cast into the flamet 
than they instantly went out. 

The author says, "The Scapular is the mantle or livery 
of the blessed Virgin, before whom prophets and apostles 
fade away into utter insignificance/' 

The order of the Carmelites seem most deeply implicated 
in this disgusting and blasphemous procedure. The Virgin 
is their patroness; and the book to which we have more 
than once referred says, " There is no doubt but the blessed 
Virgin Mary, by maternal right, is with Christ president of 
heaven and earth. It is fitting and convenient that Mary 
should possess what is her Son's. Hence may be inferred 
how she can free from purgatory the souls of her devotees, 
and fulfil her other promises to the brothers and sisters of 
the confraternity. For being mother of the Word incarnate, 
there is due to her a certain power or dominion over all 
things spiritual and temporal to which the authority of her 
Son extends: so that she has, by natural right of mater- 
nity, a power almost like that of her Son. Relying, there- 
fore, upon this her participated omnipotency, she promised 



THE SCAPULAR. 



of hell-fire, and from mfl L P / Sy ' f T the eterDal P™* 
life aa w» «„£♦ T ? J daUgera and Amities of this 

mote them. This charge was irresistible. « The supinenU 
of the Pope," says Mr. Croly,* - was quietened in o ho v 

Sn ^ + ? e ^V^ CameIiteS UDder his P^teotion, and 
endowed their institute with the most ample privileges" 
And quoting the same veracious authority, still to expose it, 
It happened/ he continues, "once upon a time in the 
city of Chester, on occasion of a pestilence raging there— a 
curse that fell upon the people in consequence of some dis- 
respect that was shown the Carmelites of that neighborhood 
—that a public procession took place to appease the divine 
wrath. In the procession there were some father Carmelites 
who as it moved along, passing near a wooden statue of 
the Virgin, which was held in the utmost veneration, bowed 
respectfully to it, saluting it also with the words, 'Ave 
Maria!' 'Hail, Mary!' when, lo and behold you, the' statue 
bowed its head respectfully in return. It should rather have 
curtsied. It also stretched forth a finger which before was 
doubled — a strange circumstance in a wooden finger — and, 
pointing to the father Carmelites in the procession, opened 
its mouth, and distinctly articulated three times the follow- 
ing words : l Behold, these are my brothers !' " 

But enough, and more than enough, of such impious pro- 
fanity. Hail, Protestantism ! May thy friends never forget 
their obligations to thee ! 

* See "An Inquiry into the principal Points of Difference, real or 
imaginary, between the two Churches, (Roman and Protestant,) with 
a view to religious Harmony and Forbearance, by the Rev. David 
0. Croly," (formerly a priest.) 

Nashville, Tenn, : Published by E. Stevenson k V. A. Owen, for (he M. E. Church, Sontb. 



No. 47. 



THE GENIUS OF POPERY EXEM- 
PLIFIED. 



Some time ago, when travelling through a part of Ireland, 
I had to visit one of the towns which is very near the centre 
of the kingdom. After preaching there one evening, a friend 
requested me to have a little conversation with a young man 

of the name of Henry . I knew not what was to be the 

purport of the conversation ; but when I retired into the 
house adjoining the place of worship, the young man came 
into the parlor ; and, after inviting him to take a chair, I 
desired him to mention the subject which he had been 
requested to lay before me. He then gave me the following 
statement : His father, mother, and family belonged to the 
Roman Catholic Church, and his parents designed him for the 
priesthood. In consequence of their intentions, and his own 
inclination, he received a good education. He was well 
versed in the Latin, and also the Greek language ; and was 
preparing for the work of the ministry, as a Roman Catholic 
priest. One day a neighbor called at his father's house, and 
stated that his family were removing to another village, and 
that they were carrying with them the various articles of 
household furniture. He brought with him a large Bible, 
which they could not conveniently take that day, and requested 
permission to leave it for a few days. Henry's father con- 
sented, and ordered the book to be carried up stairs into one 
of the chambers. 

A few days afterwards, the father said to Henry, " Fetch 
down that book, and read in it a little." Henry replied, " I 
had rather not, father." His father then commanded him to 
go for it, which he did; and when he brought it down, the 
father asked him to read a little ; and, though very unwilling, 
lie obeyed tho command of his parent. The passage on 
17 



* THE GENIUS OF POPERY EXEMPLIFIED. 

which he opened was in the First Epistle to Timothy, and he 
read on till he came to the beginning of the fourth chapter, 
and especially to those words, " Forbidding to marry, and 
commanding to abstain from meats, which God hath created 
to be received with thanksgiving of them which believe and 
know the truth. For every creature of God is good, and 
nothing to be refused, if it be received with thanksgiving ; 
for it is sanctified by the word of God and prayer." 

Henry was surprised, and asked his father, "Is this a true 
Bible V and his father replied that he believed it was. 
"Then," said Henry, "if that be right, we are wrong." 
From that time Henry embraced every opportunity for reading 
the word of God on his own account. His mind became more 
and more enlightened ; and he not only saw the errors of 
Popery, but he became more deeply concerned for the salva- 
tion of his own soul. 

A few weeks afterwards, one Monday, his father asked him, 
" Henry, where were you yesterday ?" He replied, at such a 
place of worship, referring to a Protestant chapel. "And 
where were you the Sunday before V He replied, "At the 
same place." "And do you mean to go there, and not to our 
chapel V Henry replied, "I do : because, father, the book 
which you desired me to read, proves that we are wrong." 
The father immediately seized a sword-cane, drew out the 
sword, and struck Henry on the forehead, and cut it deeply. 
(I saw the mark of the wound, which he will carry with him 
to the grave.) The father continued striking him, till Henry 
ran up stairs, entered his chamber, and barricaded the door. 
He remained there till morning, and found, when daylight 
appeared, that the floor was almost covered with his blood. 

At length he ventured down stairs, and found that his 
father, and a young man, a cousin of his, had sticks prepared 
to beat him with : both of whom broke their sticks on his 
back and head. While they went into the yard to procure 
others, Henry passed into a small parlor, the window of which 
was open. He got through, and, though without hat or coat, 
ran as swiftly as he could to a neighboring village, and seeing' 
a door open, he rushed into the house, which provi'th-nicilly 
proved to be the house of a pious Protestant. 'Picv lie on. 
tinued to reside, without venturing back to his father's family. 
After Henry had given me this statement, I aaked him why 



THE GENIUS OF POPERY EXEMPLIFIED. 3 

he was so unwilling to read in the Bible which had been left 
at his father's house, and which he declined reading till he 
received the command of his father. 

He then informed me that, some time before, one of the 
priests called at the house of a neighbor, and saw a Bible 
lying on the table. He directed one of the children to bring 
him a hatchet, which the child brought. He then cut the 
Bible in pieces, and ordered the children to go and bury them 
in the dunghill : which they did. He then ordered the father 
and mother to come to the chapel on the following Friday. 
Before they came, he had caused gravel to be strewed on the 
floor. When they arrived, he ordered them to bare their 
knees, and to go fifteen times round the chapel on their bared 
knees, which caused them to stream with blood. " That/' said 
Henry, " was the cause why I was afraid to read in that book." 

About ten days since, says a minister in Ireland, I happened 
to meet, in company, a young woman, twenty or twenty-one 
years of age, who was educated a strict Roman Catholic, and 
highly advanced in one of their devout orders. 

She gave, on that occasion, the following account : By read- 
ing some tracts written by the Rev. Gideon Ouseley and 
others, on the Popish controversy, she was convinced of the 
errors of that system. The pamphlets, which she had kept 
concealed in the case of the clock, which it was her duty to 
wind up, were discovered and destroyed by her mother. She 
chastened her severely for having them, and reported her to 
the clergy, who used their influence, with that of her parents, 
to reclaim her, but in vain. She afterwards procured a Bible, 
which, at convenient intervals, she was much in the habit of 
reading, and made a pocket for it, and carried it about her 
person, to avoid discovery. 

One morning, while reading it in her room, she was sud- 
denly called down stairs, and, in her haste to obey the call, 
forgot the Bible, leaving it behind her on the table. Hei 
sister entering the room in her absence saw the Bible, and 
told her mother, who came to witness it herself. She then 
sent for the priest, who came without delay. The young 
woman was called into the parlor, and her mother brought the 
Bible down stairs in her hand, but with a cloth interposed, to 
prevent the defilement of touching the book with her hand 



4 THE GENIUS OF POPERY EXEMPLIFIED. 

The priest reproved and admonished the young woman sharp- 
ly for having such a book. Then, taking up the fire-poker, 
he raised up the coals which were on the top of the fire ; and 
having thus prepared a place for the Bible, her mother thrust 
it into the flame. While the Bible was burning, the priest 
emphatically said, " Thus shall it be with the author, the 
owner, and the reader of that book." The young woman, 
looking on with painful feeling, said, " If the Author is con- 
sumed, I am sure it is bad enough ; for the Author of that 
book is Jesus Christ, — it is God's book." For such expres- 
sions she was severely rebuked; and after the Bible was 
burned, the cloth in which her mother brought it down stairs 
she also thrust into the fire, and it was consumed. Holy 
water was then procured, and the house was sprinkled and 
purged by it from the foul contamination of the dreadful book. 

From the severity of the treatment she received on account 
of her heresy, and the danger which she apprehended of 
being put into some place of confinement, she soon after fled 
from her father's house, and is now in the service of a highly 
respectable clergyman of the Established Church, who affords 
her shelter and protection. This scene did not occur in a 
remote village, or an obscure country place, but in the heart 
of the city of Dublin. As I had it from the young woman's 
own lips, I have adhered to her own words, and could mention 
names, street, and number. 

Such is the determination of the Koman Catholic priests to 
prevent their people from reading the book of Grod ! 



Nashville, Tenn. : Published by B. Stevenson k F. A. Owen, for the M. K. Chnroh, Sontk. 



No. 48. 



GIANT POPE. 



Among the most graphic pictures of the Pilgrim's Progress, 
is the scene placed by the immortal dreamer at the end of 
the Valley of the Shadow of Death : — 

"Now I saw in # my dream, that at the end of the valley 
lay blood, bones, ashes, and mangled bodies of men, even of 
pilgrims that had gone this way formerly; and while I 
was musing what should be the reason, I espied a little 
before me a cave, where two giants, Pope and Pagan, dwelt 
in old time; by whose power and tyranny the men whose 
bones, blood, ashes, etc., lay there, were cruelly put to death. 
But by this place Christian went without much danger, 
whereat I somewhat wondered ; but I have learned since, 
that Pagan has been dead many a day; and as for the 
other, though he be yet alive, he is, by reason of age, and also 
of the many shrewd brushes that he met with in his younger 
days, grown so crazy and stiff in his joints, that he can now 
do little more than sit in his cave's mouth, grinning at pil- 
grims as they go by, and biting his nails because he cannot 
come at them. So I saw that Christian went on his way; 
yet, at the sight of the old man that sat at the mouth of the 
cave, he could not tell what to think, especially because he 
spoke to him, though he could not go after him, saying, ' You 
will never mend till more of you be burned/ But he held 
his peace, and set a good face on it, and so went by and 
catched no hurt." 

John JJunyan, it seems, did not entertain the opinion, so 
popular at present, that Popery has lost its appetite for blood. 
He did not think it had in his age — we do not think it has to 
this day. (Kant Pope is just what he was when Bunyan s"aw 



£ GIANT POPE. 

him iu his dream. In proof of this, read the " Letters Apos- 
tolic of our Most Holy Lord, Pope Pius, concerning the Dog- 
matic Definition of the Immaculate Conception of the Mother 
of God," in December, 1854, as published in the Freeman's 
Journal, a Komish paper of New York, February 17, 1855. 
In this document the Pope says : " Wherefore, if any shall 
dare — which Grod avert! — to think otherwise than as it has 
been defined by Us, they should know and understand that 
they are condemned by their own judgment, that they have 
suffered shipwreck of the faith, and have revolted from the 
unity of the Church • and besides, by their own act they sub- 
ject themselves to the penalties justly established, if what 
they think they should clave to signify by word, writing, or 
any other outward means." In his Encyclical Letter, August 
15, 1852, Pius says: "The absurd and erroneous doctrine or 
raving in defence of liberty of conscience, is a most pestilen- 
tial error — a pest of all others most to be dreaded in a state." 
The Givilta Cattolica, issued at Rome, is perhaps the most 
authoritative journal published by the Papists, Roniish editors 
in Protestant countries quote it with marked deference. In No- 
vember, 1854, the Civiltd put forth an elaborate article defend- 
ing the coercive power of the Church of Rome in the broadest 
terms. It says : " The Church is meek, because this is her 
spirit — not as if she, being a spiritual society, has no right 

TO PUNISH, EVEN WITH BLOOD OR WITH DEATH." 

The Paris Univers, a Jesuitical organ, says : "A heretic 
examined and convicted by the Church, used to be delivered 
over to the secular power and punished with death. Nothing 
has ever appeared to us more necessary. More than one 
hundred thousand persons perished in consequence of the 
heresy of Wickliffe : a still greater number for that of John 
Huss ; and it would not be possible to calculate the bloodshed 
caused by Luther — and it is not yet over. 

"As for myself, what I regret, I frankly own, is, that they 
did not burn John Huss sooner, and that they did not like- 
wise burn Luther. This happened because there "was not 
found some prince sufficiently politic to stir up a crusade 
against Protestants." 

Brownson, in bis Quarterly Review, published in Boston, 
follows close in the wake. In October, 1851*. he wrote : — 
11 The liberty of heresy and unbelief is not a right. 



GIANT POPE. 3 

All the rights the sects have or can have, are derived from 
the state, and rest on expediency. As they have, in their 
character of sects hostile to the true religion, no rights under 
the law of nature or the law of God, they are neither 
wronged nor deprived of liberty if the state refuses to grant 
them any rights at all. 

" The sorriest sight to us is a Catholic throwing up his cap 
and shouting, 'All hail, democracy !' " 

He says again : " Protestantism of every form has not, and 
never can have, any rights where Catholicity is triumphant." 

"Let us dare to assert the truth in the face of the lying 
world, and, instead of pleading for our Church at the bar of 
the State, summon the State itself to plead at the bar of the 
Church, its divinely constituted judge. " 

" I never think of publishing any thing in regard to the 
Church, without submitting my articles to the Bishop for in- 
spection, approval, and endorsement." 

The Shepherd of the Valley, St. Louis, Missouri, says, No- 
vember 23, 1851: "The Church is of necessity intolerant. 
Heresy she endures when and where she must; but she hates 
it, and directs all her energies to its destruction. If Catho- 
lics ever gain an immense numerical majority, religious free- 
dom in this country is at an end. So our enemies say. So 
we believe." 

And again : " Protestantism of every kind Catholicity in- 
serts in her catalogue of mortal sins : she endures it when 
and where she must; but she hates it, and directs all her 
energies to eifect its destruction." 

And still again, October 22, 1853 : " We think the ' masses' 
were never less happy, less respectable, and less respected, than 
they have been since the Reformation, and particularly within 
the last fifty or one hundred years — since Lord Brougham 
caught the mania of teaching them to read, and communi- 
cated the disease to a large proportion of the English nation, of 
which, in spite of all our talk, we are too often the servile 
imitators." 

And the Romish Archbishop of St. Louis says :_ "Heresy 
and unbelief are crimes; and in Christian countries, as in 
Italy ar<d Spain, for instance, where all the people sre Catho- 
lics, and where the Catholic religion is an essential part of the 
law of the land, they are punished as other crimes." 



* GIANT VOl'K. 

The Rambler (1843) says: "Religious liberty, in the 
sense ofa liberty possessed by every man to choose his 
religion, is one of the most wretched delusions ever foisted on 
this age by the father of all deceit." 

And again : " You ask, if he (the pope) were lord in the 
land, and you were in a minority, if not in numbers, yet in 
power, what would he do to you ? That, we say, would en- 
tirely depend on circumstances. If it would benefit the cause 
of Catholicism, he would tolerate you : if expedient, he would 
imprison you, banish you, fine you, possibly he might even 
hang you; but, be assured of one thing, he would never 
tolerate you for the sake of the l glorious principles' of civil 
and religious liberty." 

The Boston Pilot speaks in the same healthy tone : " No 
good government can exist without religion; and there can 
be no religion without an inquisition, which is wisely designed 
for the promotion and protection of true faith." 

So the Pittsburgh Catholic Visitor, in alluding to the sup- 
pression of the Protestant chapel at Rome, in 1848 : " For 
our own part, we take this opportunity of expressing our 
hearty delight at the suppression of the Protestant chapel at 
Rome. This may be thought intolerant ; but when, we would 
ask, did we ever profess to be tolerant of Protestantism, or 
favor the doctrine that Protestantism ought to be tolerated ? 
On the contrary, we hate Protestantism — we detest it with 
our whole heart and soul — and we pray that our aversion to 
it may never decrease. We hold it meet that in the Eternal 
City no worship repugnant to Grod should be tolerated, and 
we are sincerely glad that the enemies of truth are no longer 
allowed to meet together in the capital of the Christian 
world." 

The foregoing quotations speak for themselves. We do 
not call attention to them for the purpose of arraying Protest- 
ants in a persecuting attitude against Papists. God forbid ! 
But we do wish Protestants to be apprised of the principles 
and aims of Popery, that they might be induced, by evangel- 
ical measures — and such alone we recommend — to stem the 
progress of this dangerous heresy. " With the well-advised 
is wisdom." 



Nashville, Tain. . Published by K. Stevenson & F. A. Owen, for the M. E. Church, South.