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Full text of "Political Science Of The State"

THE STATE'S RELATIONS TO RELIGION.           457
state was strong enough to do it, be punished for idolatry,
they might be put outside of the protection of the state, their
temple lands might be confiscated ; while, on the contrary, the
churches and other religious institutions might be allowed to
receive endowments. So, again, as the distinction had, been
made between lawful and unlawful pagan rites, a similar dis-
tinction might now be made between orthodox and heretical
Christians. And as certain bishoprics had political influence,
and the laity had a voice in the elections, it was not strange
that the prince or sovereign, especially when the laity dwin-
dled in intelligence or numbers, should acquire the right of
giving or withholding a confirmation of clerical and popular
choice, either as being responsible for public peace and
order; or as representing the laity ; or as following the ex-
ample of the heathen emperors or the Jewish kings; or as
suzerains, after the feudal system was matured and embraced
church dignitaries with vast possessions and jurisdiction.
Nor was it at all strange, in the time of decay and reconstruc-
tion, that the bishops in many of the towns, being the most
enlightened and venerated men there, should acquire political
and judicial power, first in certain classes of cases which had
to do with religion and ecclesiastical law, then as heads of the
towns, as the officers next to the kings. But, to pursue this
train of thought no further, we may reduce the relations of
church and state to the following possible forms:
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First, to that in which the state is absorbed in the church or
Theories of reia- pure theocracy.    As the church never claimed
tion    of   Christian                                    .                                                    .
church to state. such a relation to temporal affairs, but always
conceded the right of the state to a separate existence, we
may pass over this relation with a single remark. If the
church and state could have been united under one head, the
strict theocracy thus constituted must have been universal.
There could have been no Christian states, but only one state
reaching as far as Christianity was embraced. But the words
of Christ, " who made me a judge or a divider over you/'