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Full text of "The fourfold sovereignty of God"

TRA 




THE 



\ 



FOUKFOLD SOVEREIGNTY 

OF GOD. 



BY 



HENRY EDWARD, 

AKCIIIilSHOP OF IVESTMIJfSTER. 




BOSTON: 

i A. T R, i c K D 

1872. 




MAR 27 1954 



\ 



.> 



THESE four Lectures are intended to 
complete the outline of the subject 
of those on the Four Great Evils of 
the Day. In speaking of the latter, 
I was constantly aware that the posi 
tive truths ought to have been first 
stated, and that the Sovereignty of 
God must be understood before the 
Revolt of Man can be measured. 
These Lectures, like the last, are 
printed as they were taken down at 
the time. I let them go with all their 
faults, believing the truths and prin 
ciples contained in them to be of vital 
moment in these days; and hoping 
that some one with more ability and 
greater leisure will fill up the outline 
I have tried to draw. 

3 



CONTENTS. 



LECTURE I. 

PAGE 

THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD OVER THE INTELLECT 

OF MAN 7 



LECTUEE II. 

THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD OVER THE WILL OF 

MAN 51 

LECTURE III. 
THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD OVER SOCIETY. ... 95 

LECTURE IV. 

THE SOVEREIGNTY OF THE DIVINE HEAD OF THE 

CHURCH 139 

LECTURE V. 

THE SOVEREIGNTY OF THE CHURCH DERIVED FROM 

ITS DIVINE HEAD 174 

LECTURE VI. 

THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD OVER THE COURSE OF 

THE WORLD 223 

(5) 



LECTUEE I. 

THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD OVER THE IN 
TELLECT OF MAN. 



" And God indeed, having winked at the times 
of this ignorance, now dedareth unto men, 
that all should everywhere do penance, be 
cause He hath appointed a day wherein He 
will judge the world in equity, by the Man 
whom He hath appointed, giving faith to all, 
by raising Him from the dead? Acts xvii. 
30, 31. 

THESE were the words of St. Paul to 
the Athenians, when their philosophers 
called him a "word-sower" and a " pub 
lisher of new gods/ because he preached 
to them Jesus and the resurrection from 
the dead. This was his meaning : God, 

7 



8 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

in times past, shut His eyes to the idol 
atries and polytheism of men. Those 
times are past now, for God has mani 
fested Himself to the world. He has 
made Himself known, and has therefore 
commanded all men everywhere to do 
penance, that is, to believe in Him 
and to repent of their sins, under 
pain of eternal judgment; for He has 
appointed a day in which He will judge 
the world by that Man. whom He hath 

</ 

appointed to be the Judge of the living 
arid the dead ; and for this end He has 
given faith that is, the illumination 
to believe His word by the resurrection 
of Jesus Christ from the dead. In this 
way, the Apostle distinctly declares the 
sovereignty of God as the Creator, and 
as the Judge of all things ; His sover 
eignty over man both in body and soul, 
over the intellect in all its faculties, 



OVER THE INTELLECT OF MAN. 9 

over the will in all its powers. As Ma 
ker and Lord, God has dominion and 
sovereignty over man, " whom He made 
to His own image and likeness; and 
man being of a rational, a moral nature, 
is therefore a responsible being. 

Last year, the Council of the Vatican 
made a decree in these words : " Foras 
much as God is the Creator, and the 
Lord of all things, therefore man alto 
gether depends upon Him ; and every 
created intellect is subject to the Un 
created Truth, and owes to it a perfect 
obedience both of reason and of will." * 
Attached to that Decree are these two 
canons: "If any man shall say, that 
the reason of man is so independent of 
God that God cannot command faith, 
let him be anathema." And again : " If 
any man shall say, that the act of faith 

* First Constitution on Catholic Faith, chap. iii. 



10 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

in man is not free, let him be anathe 
ma;" and this enunciates the subject 
of which I purpose to speak. The sov 
ereignty of God over the intellect is the 
right of God over the rational crea 
tures He has made. He requires of 
them a perfect obedience of their ra 
tional and moral nature, and holds 
them responsible to render that obedi 
ence. The way in which God requires 
the obedience of the rational nature of 
man is by faith. 

Faith is belief in truth : but not of 
all kinds of truth, for of truth there are 
two kinds. There is one kind which is 
necessary, and therefore compels the 
assent of the intellect. For instance, 
that things which are equal to the 
same, are equal to one another; that 
two parallel lines can never intersect; 
that the whole is greater than the part ; 



OVER THE INTELLECT OF MAN. 11 

that the three angles of a triangle are 
equal to two right angles, and the like : 
these are necessary truths, which 
the intellect of man is constrained by 
an intrinsic law of its nature to assent 
to. In these truths, therefore, there 
is- knowledge, but not faith. There 
is about them no obscurity, and no 
intervention of the Divine authority. 
But all moral truths, that is, all those 

truths which relate to the world un- 

i 

seen, to the nature of God, to the mor 
al duty of man, to his future destiny 
all these are truths which are not in 
trinsically necessary. They depend up 
on the will of God, and upon the con 
stitution and order of His revelation. 
They are therefore believed upon the 
authority of God, who has revealed 
them. The authority of God inter 
venes to require of us the submission 



12 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

of our intellect and of our will to the 
revelation He has made. 

It is thus, then, that God exercises 
His sovereignty in requiring faith. He 
commands faith under the penalty of 
eternal death. The words of our Di 
vine Lord expressly declare this law: 
"He that believeth, and is baptized, 
shall be saved: but he that believeth 
not, shall be condemned." * That is, 
the voluntary act of faith is taken as 
the test of obedience ; and according to 
the obedience or disobedience of the 
rational nature .will the judgment be 
hereafter. 

We are confidently told in these 
days that faith is a weakness and a 
blindness ; that it is unworthy of man ; 
that it is servility and degradation, and 
I know not what besides. I will affirm, 

* St. Mark xvi. 16. 



OVER THE INTELLECT OF MAN. 13 

then, that faith is the most perfect act 
of the human reason; that the most 
reasonable act of man is to believe in 
the Uncreated Eeason of God; that 
the highest act of an intellectual na 
ture, next only to the eternal contem 
plation of the Uncreated Truth here 
after, is to believe that Uncreated Truth 
now ; and this is what I shall endeavor 
to draw out. 

1. First, God exercises His sover 
eignty over the human intellect, even 
by the lights of nature. There is in 
the natural world a manifestation of 
God which lays all men under the obli 
gation of knowing Him. They who, 
with the lights of nature before them, 
remain in ignorance of God, are not 
only intellectually in error, they are 
also morally in error, and tbey are re 
sponsible for that moral error. Not to 



14 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

know God is sin. The Apostle says to 
the Romans, "The invisible things of 
Him" that is, of God "from the 
creation of the world, are clearly seen, 
being understood by the things that 
are made, His eternal power also and 
divinity; so that they are inexcusable. 
Because that, when they had known 
God, they have not glorified Him as 
God, nor gave thanks; but became 
vain in their thoughts, and their foolish 
heart was darkened. For professing 
themselves to be wise, they became 
fools. And they changed the glory of 
the incorruptible God into the likeness 
of the image of a corruptible man."* 
Here, then, is an express declaration, 
that the lights of nature are sufficient 
to prove to us the existence of God, 
His power,* His Divinity, and, therefore, 

* Rom, i. 20-23. 



OVER THE INTELLECT OF MAN. 15 

his perfections ; so that they are inex 
cusable who do not know God, and, 
therefore, do not believe and make an 
act of faith in Him, and of submission 
to His sovereignty, as their Maker and 
Lord. 

Again, the Apostle says : " When the 
Gentiles, who have not the law, do by 
nature those things that are of the law, 
these, having not the law, are a law to 
themselves : who show the work of the 
law written in their hearts, their con 
science bearing witness to them, and 
their thoughts within themselves accus 
ing them, or else defending them."* 
That is, there is in every man a moral 
sense, or instinct, or judgment, or testi 
mony to right and wrong, which re 
bukes him when he does wrong, which 
sustains him when he does right. There 

* Bom. ii. 14, 15. 



16 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

is therefore an inward light, whereby 
the human reason may perceive the 
moral law of God; and if so, then 
every man has within him a testimony 
to know that he has an intellectual 
and moral nature ; and if he has an 
intellectual and moral nature, he has a 
soul that is, the image of God 
within him, and that image is an im 
mortality. They, then, who, amidst 
the lights of nature, do not know God, 
or the distinctions of right and wrong, 
or that they have a soul which is im- 



mortal and responsible, are guilty for 
that ignorance. To be ignorant of 
these things is sin, because such igno 
rance is vincible. The lights of nature 
are sufficient to prove these things, and 
they who are ignorant of them are 
willingly ignorant of them; that is, 
ignorant through their own will, and 



OVEK THE INTELLECT OF MAN. 17 

therefore culpable before God ; and for 
that culpable ignorance will have to 
give account at the last day. 

2. But, secondly, there is another 
world by which God has revealed Him 
self. The lights of the natural creation 
on all sides testify to the truths of 
which I have already spoken; but 
there is a supernatural world at this 
moment round about us, against which 
the disputers of this world rail, as the 
philosophers at Athens. They who 
preach of this supernatural world are 
" word-sowers," babblers, " publishers of 
new gods." Nevertheless, there exists 
in the midst of mankind a kingdom, 
present, visible, and audible, manifest 
ing itself with sufficient evidence, 
through which God demands the sub 
mission of faith, through which He 
manifests His sovereignty over the in- 

2 



18 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

tellect of man. That Kingdom has 
about it certain marks, properties, and 
prerogatives, which no human institu 
tion, kingdom, or empire ever pos 
sessed. 

For instance, its indefectible exist 
ence. The history of mankind is the 
history of successive dynasties. Like 
shadows, they have come and passed 
away; they have each one contained 
the principle of its own dissolution. 
Not one of them was intrinsically 
changeless and incorruptible. The 
Church of Jesus Christ, from its foun 
dation to this hour, continues incorrup 
tible in itself. The worldly accidents 
around it are human, and cleave to it 
like the dust to our feet. As the light 
of heaven is changeless, incorruptible, 
nnsoiled in its purity, though it looks 
upon all the corruption of the world, 



OVER THE INTELLECT OF MAN. 19 

so is the Church of God in the world ; 
and as the Presence of our Divine Lord 
in the Blessed Sacrament abides in its 
immutable sanctity in the midst of the 
sins of men, so the Church of Jesus 
Christ abides incorruptibly the same, 
the sins and corruptions of those who 
visibly belong to it notwithstanding. 
It also has an indissoluble unity, and 
an immutability in the law of morals 
and in the doctrines of the faith, which 
it has taught from the .beginning, and 
now at this time teaches in every 
place. 

If I affirm that the faith has never 
changed, men may say : " If you speak 
of past time, how can you prove it ? 
I affirm therefore that the faith is the 
same now in all the world. This is a 
fact of the present, and may be easily 
tested. Now this changeless identity 



20 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

of one truth in all places at this time 
is the countersign of the immutable 
perpetuity of the same truth in all 
times. Things which spring from one 
law have one type. Corruption is 
change, and breeds diversity. Identity 
points to a changeless principle which 
is above the order of nature. 

Now these are phenomena manifest 
ing a supernatural kingdom in this 
natural world. The reason of man, if 
it be consistent, can ascribe the exist 
ence of that fact to none but the Di 
vine Creator. If man had made it, 
man might rid himself of it. If man 
had founded it, he might destroy it. If 
man had set it up, he might sweep it 
off the face of the earth ; but man has 
striven to sweep it away, and cannot, 
any more than he can sweep away the 
mountains which God has rooted in the 



OVER THE INTELLECT OF MAN. 21 

earth. God perpetually defies man by 
the existence of His Church. He man 
ifests His sovereignty over the reason 
of man by this witness, which man can 
neither deny nor explain away. He 
can in no way account for its existence 
and changeless identity. If he will not 
account for it by the only solution 
which is true, God shows His sover 
eignty by baffling the reason and will 
of men, which cannot rid the world of 
the presence of God, manifested in the 
supernatural order of His power. 

The mere lights of nature then, for 
I am thus far treating the question as a 
matter of human reason, of human his 
tory, these testify, both in the natu 
ral and in what I will call the Christian 
world, to the existence of God s sov- 
reignty. But this is not all. The 
Christian world which testifies to the 



22 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

sovereignty of God, testifies to the 
coining of the Son of God in the flesh 
that is, to the Incarnation. It testi 
fies to the perpetual presence of God 
the Holy Ghost. As a fact of history, 
it is certain that it has spoken and still 
speaks to mankind with a voice which 
never ceases, and the world tells us 
that its pretensions never change ; that 
is to say, it teaches always the same 
things, and claims for that which it 
teaches a Divine authority. It calls on 
men to submit their intellect to its 
Divine voice. It claims, in virtue of 
God s authority over His creatures, that 
we should render to Him that worship 
of the reason, that " reasonable service, * 
which the Apostle declares to be the 
true sacrifice of man to God.* When 
St. Paul preached to the Athenians, so 



* Rom. xii. 1. 



OVER THE INTELLECT OF MAN. 

long as they believed him only to be a 
disputer like themselves, and that his 
teaching was based only on human phi 
losophy, they called him a " word-sow 
er ; " but in the day when they knew 
that he was a teacher sent from God, 
that he had Divine assistance in what 
he taught, that the message he uttered 
was a Divine message, that the authority 
by which he spoke was the authority of 
God, from that moment they received 
all he said as coming from a fountain 
of Divine certainty. They believed; 
that is, they offered the obedience of 
faith to what he said. They knew that, 
in hearing him, they heard the word of 
God; that what he delivered, he de 
livered not from himself, but from the 
Master that sent him. 

So it is now with the Church in the 
world. The sovereignty which God 



24 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

claims over our intellect is the obedi 
ence of faith rendered to the Divine 
voice of His Church. 

We can stand in relation to God and 
His truth only in one of two ways. 
We are either the critics who examine, 
test, and choose, who accept or reject 
for ourselves by our own lights and our 
own judgment; or we are the disciples 
who sit at the feet of a Divine teacher, 
receiving by faith, with the simple ad 
hesion of our whole nature, intellectual 
and moral, that which He teaches. We 
owe Him the submission of our intel 
lect, because we know that all revealed 
truth comes from the uncreated intelli 
gence of God. The highest act of the 



reason of man is to submit itself and 
to be conformed to the intelligence of 
God. We owe to him the submission 
of our reason, because the Uncreated 



OVER THE INTELLECT OF MAN. 25 

Truth is the original of our intelligence, 

O O 

and will be the law of our judgment 
hereafter. We owe Him also the love 
of our hearts,, because that manifesta 
tion of the truth of God is the manifes 
tation also of His grace and His love. 

What has been said may, I think, 
suffice to show that the obedience of 
faith is not servile, nor degrading, nor 
irrational, nor unworthy of an intellec 
tual being. Nay, I shall show hereafter 
that the argument turns the other way ; 
as may readily be seen by a moment s 
consideration of the effects of this sub 
mission of faith to a Divine teacher. 

3. The first and immediate effect is 
the illumination of the reason. The 
reason is pervaded by a light which, 
without faith, it could not possess. And 
the intellect is dignified by that illumi 
nation. How, then, can it be degraded ? 



26 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

What is the illumination which we re 
ceive by faith ? The Apostle says : 
" Every best gift, and every perfect gift, 
is from above, coming down from the 
Father of lights, with whom there is no 
change, nor shadow of vicissitude/ * 
forasmuch as he is the immutable truth. 
It is, therefore, a participation of the 
light of God. Again : " That was the 
true Light, which enlighteneth every 
man that cometh into the world." f 
The light of God is the dignity of the 
intellect of man. In what, then, does 
it consist ? It may be said to consist 
in three things. 

First, in the most pure and perfect 
knowledge mankind has ever had of 
God : of His nature, personality and per 
fections; of His wisdom, sanctity, purity, 
love, mercy, power ; and also of His 

* St. James i. 17. t St John i. 9. 



OVER THE INTELLECT OF MAN. 27 

relations to us, as our Father, our Re 
deemer, our Sanctifier. Secondly, in 
the most perfect knowledge of the na 
ture of man ; because God was mani 
fested in our manhood. The original 
and the image. were united in One Per 
son ; and in the Person of Jesus Christ 
the most perfect manifestation of the 
image of God in our manhood, glorified 
by the presence of the Divine Original, 
and enveloped in the splendor of the 
Eternal Son of God, was revealed to 
the \vorld. In the vision of the Word 
made flesh, we see not only the human 
ity of the first Adam, but the elevation, 
perfection, and glory of our manhood 
in the second Adam, from whom we 
derive life and immortality. Thirdly, 
in the most perfect morality, the most 
pure and most elevated; as, for exam 
ple, the Sermon on the Mount. Does 



28 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

there exist in the whole history of man 
kind, in all the philosophies of man, 
anything to compare for moral perfec 
tion with the Sermon on the Mount? 
Where will you find in all the teaching 
of man this one simple precept : " All 
things, whatsoever ye would that men 
should do to you, do you also to them." * 
Where did you ever find the precept: 
"Love your enemies: bless them that 
curse you," where, except only in 
the mouth of Jesus Christ ? Was it 
ever heard : " Be ye therefore perfect, 
as also your Father, which is in heaven, 
is perfect," " who maketh His sun to 
rise upon the good and bad, and raineth 
upon the just and unjust "?~j~ Here is 
a perfect morality, to which nothing 
that ever came from the unaided intel 
lect or w r ill of man bears any compari- 

* St. Matt. vii. 12. f Ibid. v. 45, 48. 



OVER THE INTELLECT OF MAN. 29 

son. Where in the morals of mankind 
can be found anything to compare with 
the two precepts of loving God with all 
our heart and our neighbor as our 
selves ? Where can be found anything 
to compare in generosity, in tenderness 
of love, in sacrifice of self, with the 
Oblation of our Lord upon the Cross ? 
There is, then, an illumination given to 
us by the light of faith, which no cre 
ated intellect can possess from any other 
source. But once more : 

4. This illumination elevates the rea 
son of man. It raises it to a state and 
order of dignity otherwise unattainable ; 
and in so doing, it confirms even its 
natural perfection. 

First, The truths of the natural order 
are confirmed and made clear, and a 
Divine certainty is added to them by 
the light of revelation. The existence 



30 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

of God, the law of right and wrong, 
the soul and its immortality these 
truths of the natural order are con 
firmed both in clearness and certainty 
by the light of faith. 

Secondly, there are superadded to the 
truths of the natural order the truths 
of the supernatural order : for instance, 
the knowledge of God through the In 
carnation ; the knowledge of our rela 
tions to Him through the adoption of 
grace ; of our brotherhood and consan 
guinity with Jesus Christ, the Incarnate 
Son of God ; of the indwelling of God 
the Holy Ghost in the intellect and will 
of man, making man His temple ; be 
sides this, the presence of God, not 
only in nature, but in grace, and that 
pervading the whole world and present 
in ourselves. St. Augustine, describing 
his condition before he believed, said, 



OVER THE INTELLECT OF MAN. 31 

"I sought Thee everywhere and found 
Thee not ; for Thou wast within me, 
and I was out of myself. I sought 
Thee everywhere but in that place 
where Thou wast to be found m my 
own soul." We know by faith that the 
presence of God inhabits each one of 
us ; that we are united to the unseen 
world and to the communion of the 
spirits of just men made perfect ; and 
that the vision of God hereafter is our 
inheritance. 

These are supernatural truths added 
to the lights of the natural order. 
Surely the reason possessing them is 
elevated above both nature and itself. 
St. John says, " Behold what manner 
of charity the Father hath bestowed 
upon us, that we should be named, and 
should be the sons of God. Therefore, 
the world hath not known us, because 



32 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

it hath not known Him. We are now 
the sons of God: and it hath not yet 
appeared what we shall be. We know, 
that when He shall appear, we shall be 
like to Him : because we shall see Him 
as He is."* Is it possible to conceive 
of any elevation greater than the con 
sciousness that we are sons of God ? 
But it is this that faith gives to the 
reason of man. 

5. Lastly, faith makes the reason 
perfect. The reason itself, as a faculty 
or an intellectual power, is perfected by 
the action of faith upon it. Just as the 
hand by experience is strengthened 
and acquires skill, and is able to exe 
cute the most powerful or the finest 
operations ; and as the ear may be at 
tuned and cultivated to harmony, and 
the eye to an exquisite perfection of 
sight ; so is it with the action of faith 

* 1 St. John iii. 1, 2. 



OVER THE INTELLECT OF MAN. 33 

upon the intellectual faculties of the 
soul. Take, for example, the whole 
history of the Old Testament, and com 
pare the intellectual condition of Israel 
with the intellectual condition of the 
Gentile world. No man has ever yet 
ventured to say that, as compared with 
the intellectual state of the chief phi 
losophers of the Gentile world, the He 
brew patriarchs, prophets, and saints 
were not, in intellectual stature, a head 
and shoulders above them. No man 
can fail to see that the very intellect 
of the Jewish race was elevated by the 
illumination of faith, and that personal 
character, domestic life, and the public 
commonwealth of Israel, all bore the 
marks of an elevation derived from 
faith. Submission to the sovereignty 
of God was the cause of this elevation, 
and therefore of the dignity of Israel. 

3 



34 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

Among the Gentile world, it is true 
that intellects such as those of Plato 
and Aristotle, to mention no others 
the one the great example of natural 
theology or knowledge of Divine things, 
the other the most perfect example of 
ethical or moral philosophy exhibit 
a logical cultivation not to be found 
in the splendor and dignity of Isaias 
or Ezechielj but if we compare with 
them the majesty and sublimity of the 
prophets, who will hesitate in saying 
that the moral dignity and grandeur 
of Isaias and Ezechiel .far transcend 
them in moral elevation ? But this I 
will further affirm, that wheresoever 
the belief in God was low, intellect was 
low; and that just in proportion as 
elevation and cultivation of intellect 
was attained by those Greeks, in that 
proportion they approached a purer 



OVEB THE INTELLECT OF MAN. 35 

knowledge of God and of morals. Plato 
stands at the head of all the intellects 
of the ancient world for culture and 
lofty speculation. In him, I may say, 
the speculative intellect of the order of 
nature culminated ; and in him, above 
all, we see a Theism which for purity 
and truth approaches nearest to the 
theology of Israel. In like manner 
Aristotle, for subtlety and dialectical 
precision, stands alone among the intel 
lects of antiquity; and in him we find 
the purest and truest morality the world 
without revelation has ever known. 
The ethics of Aristotle remain to this 
day as the basis on which the moral 
theology of Christendom reposes. It is 
a pure and accurate delineation of the 
morals of mankind known by the light 
of nature ; and St. Thomas builds upon 
it as a sure foundation. The world 



36 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

therefore bears testimony to this, that 
in proportion as the intellect of man 
approaches the knowledge of God and 
of self, it is dignified, and its mental 
and moral faculties are strengthened 
and expanded towards their perfection. 
The same truth is still more manifest 
in the Christian world. The intellec 
tual history of the modern world is to 
be found written in the history of Chris 
tianity. The intellectual powers of 
mankind are to be found in their high 
est perfection in Christendom. It is 
no objection whatsoever for men of 
the present day, who believe nothing, 
and who profess to have rejected even 
the existence of God, to say, " Look at 
our men of science are they in in 
tellectual dignity or power inferior to 
those whom you call your doctors? 
The answer is this: Their intellectual 



OVER THE INTELLECT OF MAN. 37 

dignity is derived from the culture of 
the Christian world. They would never 
be what they are, if they had not been 
nurtured and ripened upon that same 
mystical vine from which they have 
fallen. They retain after their fall the 
savor and the quality of the tree from 
which they fell. But can they repro 
duce it? let them, and how long will 
they transmit it? Those who have 
fallen from the knowledge of God and 
of His revelation have fallen from the 
tradition of intellectual culture. "If 
any one abide not in Me, he shall be 
cast forth as a branch, and shall with 
er." * This is true, both spiritually and 
intellectually. The intellectual stan 
dard of sceptics and infidels has- no 
perpetuity. They die out as individu 
als, and their few disciples are scat 
tered. 

* St. John xv. 6. 



38 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

On the other hand I would ask, is 
there in the history of mankind any 
thing, for intellectual power, precision, 
amplitude, fertility, to be compared with 
Saint Thomas Aquinas or Suarez, to 
mention two only out of a multitude? 
The profound and pretentious ignorance 

of this dav will no doubt think that 

/ 

these two examples belong to the mid 
dle ages, or that the latter was only 
emerging from those times of obscurity; 
but the man who so speaks cannot know 
the books on which he passes judgment. 
The intellectual system of the world, 
in its refinement and culture, will be 
found passing through the unbroken 
tradition of such minds ; and the philo 
sophers and men of science of this day, 
who tell us that we can know nothing 
w r ith certainty but that which is w 7 ithin 
the reach of sense, have not dignified 



OVER THE INTELLECT OF MAN. 39 

the human intellect, but have degraded 
it. They reject the intellectual system 
of the whole world, and all the truths 
which it proclaims. 

The obedience of faith, therefore, 
which is due to the sovereignty of God, 
is the most reasonable act of an intel 
lectual being, the most perfect act of 
which the human intellect in this state 
of mortality is capable ; there remains 
after it nothing but the vision of the 
Uncreated Truth without a veil. " Af 
ter the JSumma of St. Thomas there re 
mains nothing but the light of glory," 
is not an academical exaggeration, but 
a very truth. 

Faith, then, is the illumination, tbe 
elevation, and the perfection, even, of 
the faculty of reason itself. Faith gives 
power to the human reason, by giving 
to it principles of certainty from which 



40 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

to start. As in science the axioms and 
demonstrations of science give firm 
ness, strength, solidity, and onward 
progress to the scientific intellect, so in 
the knowledge of God, and of man, 
and of morals, the revelation of God 
gives the first axioms and primary prin 
ciples of Divine certainty, which unfold, 
elevate, and strengthen even the rea 
son itself. 

I said before that this argument turns 
the other way. If faith be the eleva 
tion, unbelief is the degradation of the 
human intellect : and that for two rea 
sons. First, because it deprives it of 
the illumination of truth; and, sec 
ondly, because it paralyzes the intellec 
tual faculties. 

It deprives it of the illumination of 
truth ; it robs it at once of all the truths 
of revelation/\^i&4Ji^ights of the su- 




OVER THE INTELLECT OF MAN. 41 

pernatural order are alike extinguished: 
God and His kingdom, the communion 
of saints, and our relations to it ; faith, 
hope, and charity ; the Church of God 
in the world ; the mysteries of grace, 
everything resting on the supernatural 
order is darkened. Just as, if light were 
withdrawn from the world, sight would 
cease to be, for the eye in midnight can 
see nothing ; so the deprivation of the 
human reason by unbelief leaves it in 
midnight. But it is not only the lights 
of the supernatural order that at once 
are clouded the lights even of the 
natural order become dim. The intel 
lect loses certainty and firmness of be 
lief, even in those principles of the nat 
ural order to which the lights of nature 
testify. It is certain that Deists lose 
much of the light of the knowledge of 
God when they reject revelation, be- 



42 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

cause even nature ceases to testify as 
luminously, and to speak as articulately, 
of the existence of God, His eternal 
power and Divinity, to those in whom 
the sceptical spirit is at work. Again, 
if they do not lose the knowledge of 
their own soul, and of its immortality, 
they begin to doubt about it. 

Day after day, we hear the confident 
talk of men who tell us that we have 
no evidence to believe in anything but 
the material mechanism, which we can 
trace by physiology, chemistry, or com 
parative anatomy ; that beyond this we 
have no power to ascertain anything 
about the existence of the soul, or will, 
or life. There are men at this day, who 
consider themselves, intellectual, openly 
denying the existence of the soul ; and 
who, having denied the existence of the 
soul, deny the existence of right and 



OVER THE INTELLECT OF MAN. 43 

wrong. They tell us that right and 
wrong, and the instincts, dictates, and 
rebukes of our conscience, are arbitrary 
associations of pleasure and pain con 
nected with certain actions, by the con 
ventional traditions in which we are 
brought up. If so, then there is no 
such thing as law, either human or Di 
vine : and if no such thing as law, then 
no such thing as sin or crime, and there 
fore no such thing as justice ; and if 
there be no such thing as justice, there 
is no such thing as injustice; and if 
there be no such thing as intrinsic right, 

O O * 

there is no such thing as intrinsic wrong; 
and if not, then we are in a world which 
has no more right, order, sweetness, or 
beauty, but we are turned back again 
into the inorganic state of creation, 
" void and empty," and darkness rests 
upon the face of the deep. 



44 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

But there is something more degrad 
ing than this. If I have not a soul, 
then am I like the cattle. Nay, more ; 
if I have not a soul, I have no immor 
tality : then, so far, I am as the beasts 
that perish. 

This gospel is preached to us by way 
of manifesting the dignity of the hu 
man reason. Choose for yourselves, 
whether this be dignity or debasement. 

But xmbelief is not only a privation 
of the lights of truth, it is a paralysis 
of the reason itself. 

For I would ask : What is scepticism 
or doubt ? It is a partial denial of the 
truth or existence of things. A denial 
is a bold assertion that the thing is not 
true, or does not exist. A doubt is half 
way to a denial. And on what is it 
founded? It is founded on the sup 
posed uncertainty of evidence ; but this 



OVER THE INTELLECT OF MAN. 45 

again is founded on the assertion that 
the senses are fallible, so that we cannot 
depend on them ; and that the faculties 
of the reason may also go astray, and 
that their interpretation of the senses 
cannot be trusted. And this philoso 
phy is preached to us as the dignity of 
the human reason. To me it appears 
to be intellectual paralysis, tending to 
intellectual idiocy. To tell me my 
senses do not report to me truly the 
existence and facts of the external 
world in a way that I can depend on, 
and to tell me that my reason cannot 
interpret them ; and that I cannot know 
with a perfect certainty the internal 
facts of my own consciousness, is to 
shake my whole being, and to reduce 
me first to a state of paralysis, and af 
terwards to a state of idiocy. And yet 
this is the result of sceptical unbelief. 



46 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

In the face of this we are told that faith 
is degradation to the human intellect, 
and that unbelief is its dignity. 

I must now go no farther ; and will 
add but one only word more. 

Last year, the Council of the Vatican 
made the Decree which I have already 
recited. The Council of the Vatican 
has been a sign, against which the con 
tradiction of the whole world has been 
directed. The reason is evident. In 
past times, every Council of the Church 
had to deal with some one particular 
heresy, by which some one specific doc 
trine of the faith has been denied. The 
Council of the Vatican has had to deal 
with the whole principle of unbelief. 
It is not one doctrine only of Christian 
ity that is at stake now, but the whole 
of Christianity the whole revelation 
of God, the whole principle of faith. 



OVER THE INTELLECT OF MAN. 47 

The axe is laid to the root of the tree. 
The Council of the Vatican, knowing 
this full well, made and promulgated, 
before the tumults of the world ren 
dered necessary the suspension of its 
labors, two Constitutions, which, if it 
never add another word, will be in 
scribed in the history of the Church 
ay, and upon the intellect of the world 
too as a luminous record of Divine 
truth that can never be effaced. 

The First Constitution of Catholic 
faith may be called the philosophy of 
faith in the lights of nature and the 
order of nature, the grounds and the 
preambles upon which Divine faith 
rests, as the most perfect and most rea 
sonable act of man. 

The Second Constitution is the dec 
laration of the Rule of faith, or the 
Authority upon which faith reposes. 



48 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

This doctrinal authority was defined to 
be the infallibility of the Roman Pon 
tiff. The infallibility of the Church has 
been at all times, and by all Catholics, 
believed as a doctrine of Divine rev 
elation. Till controversy had clouded 
truth, no one doubted that the infalli 
bility of the Church contains also the 
infallibility of the Head, as the reason 
ableness of man resides eminently in 
the head which governs the body. It 
had become evident, that they who at 
tempted to deny the infallibility of the 
Head of the Church were covertly 
and I believe many unconsciously 
denying the Divine guidance of the 
whole Church. The Council of the Vat 
ican, then, with the fearless liberty of 
truth which belongs to the kingdom of 
God, and comes from God alone, pro 
mulgated these most opportune and 



OVER THE INTELLECT OF MAN. 49 

necessary Constitutions of Faith. It 
has declared, in the midst of an unbe 
lieving age, that faith is due to God 
because he is Sovereign, and because 
as Sovereign He commands it ; and that 
to know what we are to believe, He has 
instituted upon earth a witness, which 
is itself a sufficient evidence of its own 
Divine commission, that is, His visible 
Church ; a witness that may be seen as 
the representative of His Incarnation ; 
a witness that may be heard, because 
the voice of that Church speaks to the 
world, and is His voice. The Council 
of the Tatican, therefore, calls to us all, 
as St. Paul called to the Corinthians : 
" And I, brethren, when I came to you, 
came not in loftiness of speech or of 
wisdom, declaring unto you the testi 
mony of Jesus Christ. For I judged 
not myself to know anything among 

4 



50 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

you. but Jesus Christ, and Him cruci- 

/ 

fiecl. And my teaching was not in the 
persuasive words of man s wisdom, but 
in demonstration of the spirit and of 
the power of God. That your faith 
might not stand on the wisdom of man, 
but on the power of God." And to 
obtain that Divine certainty, there is 
one simple condition : to believe in the 
Divine Teacher whom He has sent. 



OVER THE WILL OF MAN. 51 



LECTURE II. 

THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD OVER THE 
WLLL OF MAN. 



" Beliold, I come: in the head of the book it is 
written of Me, that I should do Thy will, 
God" Hebrews x. 7. 

THESE words, taken by the Apostle 
from the Book of Psalms, are the words 
of the Son of God, speaking in proph 
ecy, of His advent and His mission 
in the world : " Behold, I come : in the 
head of the book " that is, in the 
outset of prophecy " it is written of 
Me." It was of this that God spoke in 
the beginning, when He foretold that 



52 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

the seed of the woman should crush 
the serpent s -head. The coming of 
Jesus Christ into the world was for the 
fulfilment of the will of God. Through 
out the Gospels we read from His own 
lips that His work on earth was to do 
His Father s will. " I came down from 
heaven not to do My own will, but the 
will of Him that sent Me." * My food 
is to do the will of Him that sent Me." f 
The obedience of Jesus Christ to the 

* 

will of God was the recognition of the 
sovereignty of God over the will of man. 
Obedience to the Divine will is the first 
law of the soul of man, and in this is 
his perfection ; which is our next sub 
ject. 

Our last subject was the sovereignty 
of God over the intellect ; and the sov 
ereignty of God over the intellect is 

* St. John vi. 38. f Ibid. iv. 34. 



OVER THE WILL OF MAN. 53 

the means and condition to the sover 
eignty of God over the will ; for God, 
being Perfect Intelligence, requires of 
no man an irrational obedience. He 
requires of all men an obedience ac 
cording to the laws and perfections of 
the human reason, and to the laws and 
perfections of truth. It is a law of our 
nature, that we can will nothing that 
we have not first known. Our intellect 
must first know the object upon which 
we would set our will, or the will can 
make no act either of desire or aver 
sion. The intellect, therefore, is the 
channel through which the sovereignty 
of God reaches the will of man. In 
proportion as we know God more per 
fectly, our will ought to be more per 
fectly conformed to the will of God. 
The will in man is defined to be a 
rational desire, and it is made up of 



54 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

two things. There is in it the desire 
after good, and there is the reason 
guiding that desire : so that it is as 
philosophers call it a rational appe 
tite; but with this peculiar office and 
power it can control the appetite ; it 
has the power of originating our ac 
tions, and of controlling itself. Now 
the intellect of man has analogy to the 
eye. The eye, which is the organ of 
sight, is under the control of the will. 
We may fix the eye on anp given ob 
ject, or we may turn the eye away from 
it, or we may either look intently or 
languidly at it. All the day long we 
see a multitude of things without look 
ing at them. The eye is filled with the 
light of day, and with the objects round 
about it ; but the eye can be fixed for 
the time only upon one, and that one 
is the only object upon which we can 



OVER THE WILL OF MAN. 55 

be said to look. We see a multitude 
of objects, which perhaps we do not 
recognize at the time, nor remember a 
moment after. So it is with the intel 
lect. It is controlled by the will, which 
can determine on what object it shall 
be fixed ; and whether it shall look fix 
edly and steadfastly at truth, or wheth 
er it shall turn the intellect away from 
truth, or make it look at truth so cur 
sorily and languidly as not to recognize 
it. Now this constitutes our responsi 
bility in regard to the truth. As I 
have said before, the words of our Di 
vine Lord, "He that believeth and is 

s 

baptized shall be saved, and he that be 
lieveth not shall be condemned," ex 
press the voluntariness of the act of 
faith. Faith is a virtue and a grace of 
the Holy Spirit; but it is also an act of 
obedience on the part of man ; and we 



56 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

/ 

are responsible for our unbelief, and 
shall be judged for it, because God has 
given a sufficient light and evidence, 
both for the truths of the natural and 
supernatural order. He will not re 
quire of any man to know any truth 
which is physically beyon$ his power 
to know ; He will only require of man 
to answer for the truth which he knew, 
and that which he might have known. 
He will not require that which is im 
possible ; for God never commands im 
possible things. He is a God of justice, 
and His justice is perfect equity. " He 
weigheth the spirits," and He knows 
with Divine precision what is possible 
and what is not possible to each one of 
us. He may require, indeed, that which 
is morally difficult, because that which 
is only difficult is not impossible. We 
are responsible to know all truth which 



OVER THE WILL OF MAN. 57 

is sufficiently proposed to us, and all 
which by diligent search we may find ; 
and therefore we shall be inexcusable 
at the last day if we do not see the 
lights of nature, which are so abundant, 
inundating the world, and if w r e have 
not known the truths to which they 
testify that is to say, the existence 
of God, His eternal power and Divinity, 
His perfections, the distinction of right 
and wrong, the law of conscience, our 
own free will, the soul and its immor 
tality and therefore our responsibility 
to our Creator. These are truths of 
the natural order, apart from and an 
terior to revelation. They are within 
our reach to know. All men, even 
those who are not only out of the 
Catholic Church, but most remote from 
it, are bound to know these truths. To 
those who are within the unity of the 



58 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

Catholic Church; there is not a doctrine 
of revelation which is not within their 
reach. God has given sufficient light 
and evidence for all who are within the 
unity of the Catholic Church to know 
all the truths of revelation. To those 
who are out of the unity of the Church, 
their probation depends on this 
whether their separation from that 
unity and the light contained therein 
be a conscious and voluntary act of 
their own. If so, then they are respon 
sible. But if it be an inherited state 
of privation, as I have said before, like 
the condition of people robbed, by the 
sin of forefathers, of their inheritance 
of perfect light, such as our own coun 
try, then millions are not responsible. 
They will not be called to answer for 
light they have never known, and 
never could have known. By them 



OVER THE WILL OF MAN. 59 

* 

the visible Church has never been seen, 
the voice of the Church has never been 
heard : and things that do not appear 
are as things that do not exist. They 
have never stood face to face with it as 
we do ; the light of Catholic faith has 
never fallen upon them. They have 
been brought up repeating the baptis 
mal creed, " I believe in the Holy Ghost, 
the holy Catholic Church ; : but between 
that article of creed and their conscience 
has intervened a colored medium, and 
a false object. They have believed 
themselves to be in the Catholic Church, 
because they have mistaken in reality 
a system of human creation for the 
Church of Jesus Christ. 

The law of God, then, is this; that 
in proportion as we possess sufficient 
evidence to know the truth, He will 
require of us to give an account of that 



60 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

v 

truth at the last day. We must give 
an account of what we have known, and 
what we have not known, and the rea 
sons why we have not known that which 
we might have known. In this, there 
fore, consists the sovereignty of God 
over the will ; and I wish you to bear 
in mind, that when I speak of faith as 
of the highest act of the human reason, 
and the most rational exercise of the 
human intellect, such faith is not a 
blind and obscure act of the supersti 
tious and the credulous, who hide their 
heads in twilight. Faith is an act of 
the human reason, expanding itself to 
wards God its Maker, and receiving the 

* o 

noontide light of revelation with the 
fullest development of its intellectual 
powers. And in proportion as it re 
ceives the truth, and submits its created 
intelligence to the uncreated wisdom 



OVER THE WILL OF MAN. 61 

of God, it is elevated and made per 
fect. 

We will now go on to our next sub 
ject, namely, the sovereignty of God 
over the will. To make it as clear as I 
can, let us consider the relations in which 
the human will has hitherto stood, and 
will stand, to the sovereignty of God. 

1. The first relation was when God 
made man "to His own image and like 
ness;" that is, He imparted to him a 
spiritual nature. He gave him an intelli 
gence and a will like His own. Man was 
the image or reflection of his Maker. 
The will, as I have said, consists in this : 
it has the power of originating our own 
actions. The lower animals have a 
power of spontaneity in following their 
natural desires, such as for food and 
rest; but they have no will. Every 
thing voluntary is spontaneous, but 



62 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

everything which is spontaneous is not 
voluntary. The lower animals, though 
they have this spontaneous power, have 
no will, because the will, as I said in 

X s 

the beginning, is a rational desire or 
appetite guided and elevated by the rea 
son ; and as the low T er animals, though 
they have instincts, are irrational 
that is, have no reason they have no 
will. The will, then, is the power of 
originating rational actions, and those 
rational actions are the actions of a will 
in conformity with the reason, and of 
the reason in conformity with the in 
telligence of God. But we are wont 
also to speak of the freedom of the will. 
Now, everything that is free is volun 
tary, but not everything which is vol 
untary is free, because the blessed in 
heaven voluntarily love God, and vol 
untarily worship Him ; but they are 



OVER THE WILL OF MAN. 63 

not free not to love Him or not to 
worship Him. The very perfection of 
their nature necessitates their love and 
worship; and yet the will in its vol 
untary action is perfect. It is the most 
perfect and entire spontaneousness, ele 
vated and guided by reason, by the 
illumination of the whole soul of the 
blessed. There is, therefore, a kind of 
freedom or liberty which does not be 
long to the perfection of the will. But 
when God made man in the beginning, 
He gave him a perfect liberty. He was 
not constrained by any external au 
thority which deprived him of his free 
dom ; he was not necessitated, as the 
blessed are, by a final perfection. He 
had therefore these three kinds of lib 
erty ; first, he had the power either to 
do or not to do, to act or to refrain from 
acting ; secondly, he had a power, with- 



64 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

in the limits of good and justice, to do 
this or that act he was not compelled 
to any specific acts of goodness or of 
justice ; lastly, he had a power which 
the blessed in heaven have not of 
doing good and evil. But this power 
of doing good and evil is indeed a part 
of our liberty in our present state of 
probation and of imperfection ; but it 
is not a part of the perfect liberty of 
the will. The use of the will is to do 
good ; but the abuse of the will is to 
do evil. It is an abuse of the power 
of originating our actions if we act 
contrary to reason, contrary to justice, 
contrary to the will of God. In the 
beginning, God created man with this 
threefold liberty, to put him upon trial 
or probation; and yet there was no 
cause or need or excuse why he should 
offend and fall, for God constituted him 



OVER THE WILL OF MAN. 65 

in original justice. There never was a 
moment when the created will of the 
first man was not sanctified and sus 
tained by the Holy Ghost, when he had 
not the presence of abundant grace 
within him to sustain him in the full 
equilibrium of his liberty. There was, 
then, no necessity nay, no reason 
whatsoever except the abuse of his free 
dom why he should do evil. His 
whole soul was under the dominion of 
the Divine knowledge and love, and his 
heart was the throne of God reigning 
supreme within it. This, then, was the 
first relation of the will to the sover 
eignty of God. 

2. The second relation was intro 
duced by the Fall of man; and see 
how it came about. The entrance of 
sin into the world was by the abuse of 
the will. Sin came through the intel- 



66 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOP 

lect. The temptation was addressed 
to the intellect, which, being perverted, 
perverted the will ; but the will was 
free to listen or not. The temptation 
was addressed with an exquisite sub 
tlety of malice. It began by a question, 
and that question began by the word 
" Why," which was then spoken for the 
first time. The tempter came and said, 
"Why hath God commanded?" This 
was a temptation to criticise the ways 
and to question the justice of God. 
" Why hath God commanded you, that 
you shall not eat of every tree of Para 
dise ? : This awakened a questioning, 
perhaps a murmuring, spirit. The next 
step of the temptation was a contra 
diction. " Ye shall not die the death." 
In this was insinuated a contradiction 
of the known truth. Thirdly, there 
was an insinuation of injustice against 



OVER THE WILL OF MAN. 67 

\ 

Gad. "For God doth know that in 
what day soever you shall eat thereof, 
your eyes shall be opened, and you 
shall be as gods ; >: as if to say, God is 
jealous lest a creature of His hands 
should be equal to Himself. Now, the 
first temptation came through the in 
tellect, and as it passed through the 
thoughts it wrought upon the soul, it 
underminded the steadfastness of the 
will, it inflamed the passions, it made 
them impatient of restraint, and thereby 
it inclined the will to abuse its liberty 
and power. The abuse of its liberty 
and power was this : to do evil, to break 
the known law, to violate the command 
ment of God. In doing so, it acted 
irrationally ; the will, in doing evil, then 
lost its rational character. It was an 
abuse and debasement of its nature; 
and the will being debased by this ir- 



68 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

/ 

rational action, deprived of its super 
natural perfection, forfeited the grace 
"of the Spirit of God. It biassed its own 
working, it warped its own nature. As 
a perfect machine, if it be rudely jarred, 
loses its perfect action, and all its ope 
rations are cast out of gear, so with the 
soul of man, when by a wilful abuse of 
his rational power he acted irrationally. 
In the moment when he rebelled against 
the sovereign will of God, his passions 
and affections which before were in 
subjection, and in perfect harmony and 
conformity to his will, obeying its do 
minion and government rose up and 
rebelled against him. The passions were 
both disordered and inflamed ; they 
were no longer within the range and 
control of reason. The affections, losing 
their reasonable character, became in 
ternal temptations, so that the words 



OVER THE WILL OF MAN. 69 

of the prophet were verified in the first 
man : " The wicked are like the raging 
sea, which cannot rest, and the waves 
thereof cast up dirt and mire." * The 
tumultuous passions and affections of 
the heart cast up desires and cravings 
which are irrational, and destructive of 
the soul of man. Just as one poisonous 
root will propagate and spread over a 
fertile garden, and one spark of fire will 
kindle a boundless conflagration, so one 
perverse will, beginning in irrational dis 
obedience, has multiplied itself through 
out mankind, and the whole world is set 
on fire by its perversity. The human 
will, becoming carnal and irrational in 
the Fall of our first parents, has been 
reproduced in all their children. " That 
which is born of the flesh is flesh." -j- We 
inherit that nature as children of wrath. 

* Isaias Ivii. 20. f St. John iii. 6. 



70 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

This, then, is the second relation of the 
will to the sovereignty of God by the 
irrational abuse of its own freedom. 

3. Then, thirdly, as man fell by ir 
rational disobedience, he is redeemed 
by an obedience which is in perfect 
conformity to the intelligence and will 
of God. St. Irenceus says, " The obedi 
ence of Mary broke the chains forged 
by the disobedience of Eve. What Eve 
had bound by unbelief, Mary has un 
bound by faith." * That is to say : the 
will fell by the unbelief of Eve, the first 
virgin, and was restored through the 
faith of Mary, the second virgin. The 
first Eve listened to the tempter, and 
fell ; the second Eve listened to the 
angel, and believed. When the angel 
saluted her with, " Hail, full of grace, 
the Lord is with thee! and revealed 

* St. Iren. Adv. Hasr. iii. 34. 



OVER THE WILL OF MAN. 71 

to her the mystery of the Incarnation, 
her intelligence, overcome for a moment 
by the splendor of supernatural light, 
asked, "How shall this be done ? "* But 
at once she made an act of perfect sub 
mission and of perfect faith : " Behold 
the handmaid of the Lord, be it done 
to me according to thy word." He,re 
was a perfectly obedient will restored to 
mankind, a will reconstituted in that 
state of perfect submission to the sover 
eignty of God in which man was in the 
beginning. Of her was born One more 
perfect because He is the Incarnate Son 
of God, in Whom the words of proph 
ecy were fulfilled : " Behold, I come, to 
do Thy will, God." 

The fulfilment of the will of God was 
the whole work of redemption. Obe 
dience unto death was the restoration 

* St. Luke i. 34. 



72 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

of mankind. When the Son of God 
took our humanity, He took a human 
soul, and in that soul a human intelli 
gence and a human will, in all things 
like our own. But between the Sacred 
Humanity and ours was this difference : 
the human w r ill of Jesus had in it no 
rebellions. It had what we distinguish 
as a superior and an inferior will ; that 
is, He had a reason and conscience 
like our own, but both were perfect. 
He had also affections and infirmities, 
and, as the theology of the Catholic 
Church says, not passions for the 
word by tradition has an evil meaning 
but " pro-passions ; that is, those 
affections of our humanity which are 
passions in us, in him are perfections. 
Nevertheless, the superior and the infe 
rior will of the Son of God in the Gar 
den of Gethsemani, were seen, not in 



OVER THE WILL OF MAN. 73 

conflict, but each exerting its proper 
and natural perfections. The sensitive 
or inferior will shrank from the vision 
of sin, from the foresight of the death 
of the world, from the anticipation of 
the Passion, from the agony which He 
then already suffered, from the Divine 
foreknowledge of anguish of that night, 
and of the desolation on Calvary. Hu 
man nature in Him shrank from pain 
and death, just as we do; but the su 
perior will stood steadfast. Knowing 
that it was for the glory of God, and 
the redemption of the world, that Pie 
should accept and drink the chalice of 
His Passion, He said : " My Father, 
if it is possible, let this chalice pass from 
Me ; nevertheless, not as I will, but as 
Thou wilt." * There was no wavering 
of imperfection in that agony of our 

* St. Matt. xxvi. 39. 



74 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

Divine Lord. He being God, the will 
that was in Him was deified. It was 
united to the perfections of the Son of 
God ; it was sanctified by the presence 
of the Holy Ghost; it was constituted 
in the Divine perfections of freedom 
and obedience ; it could be used with 
the utmost liberty of human perfection ; 
it could never be abused, because of His 
perfection both as God and as man. 
That which constituted the merit of our 
Lord s Passion was this : though it was 
necessary, from His twofold perfection, 
human and Divine, that He should love 
God, and obey Him, and fulfil His will 
with perfection, it was not necessary 
that He should suffer the agony in 
the Garden, nor the Crucifixion upon 
Calvary. These things were freely 
chosen by Him, out of love to mankind. 
" Greater love than this no man hath, 



OVER THE WILL OP MAN. 75 

that a man lay down his life for his 
friends." * It was an act of the love of 
the Son of God to give Himself for 
three-and- thirty years to mental sorrow, 
and to His agony on the Cross for our 
redemption. He freely chose that way 
of redemption the way of blood- 
shedding, passion, humiliation be 
cause it was a more profuse revelation 
of perfect love. This way of redemption 
was not required by any necessity, but 
freely ordained in the wisdom of God. 
4. Fourthly, there is still another re 
lation of the will to the sovereignty of 
God, and it is that in which we all stand 
now to Him. We are not like the first 
Adam, in a state of original justice. 
We are not like Adam after the Fall, 
in a state deprived of grace. We are 
not like the second Adam in His Divine 

* St. John xv. 13. 



76 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

perfections ; but we are regenerate 
members of the second Adam, and there 
is a perfection which comes by the Holy 
Ghost to all those who are united as 
members of the Body of Christ. The 
will of their Divine Head pervades the 
will of those that are born again. You, 
in your baptism, passed from the state 
of nature to the state of grace. " That 
which is born of the flesh is flesh, but 
that which is born of the Spirit is spir 
it." * You have been born of water and 
of the Holy Ghost, and " Christ Jesus 
is in you, unless perhaps you be repro 
bates." f Your will is a regenerate will. 
It is the will of the Son of God. What 
Jesus had by nature, because he is the 
Son of God, consubstantial with the 
Father, you have by grace, because by 
adoption you are made the sons of God. 

* St. John iii. G. f 2 Cor. xiii. 5. 



OVEE THE WILL OF MAN. 77 

St. John writes : es As many as received 
Him, to them He gave power to be 
made the sons of God." * The power 
has been given to you all ; not to be 
come equal and co-eternal with the In 
carnate Son of God, but to be sons of 
God by adoption. Again, St. Paul says : 
" You have not received the spirit of 
bondage again in fear; but you have 
received the spirit of adoption of sons, 
whereby we cry : Abba (Father)." 
" For whosoever are led by the Spirit 
of God, they are the sons of God."f 
And as many as are led by the Spirit 
of God, they have a regenerate will, 
elevated by faith, hope, and charity, 
raised by the sanctifying grace of God, 
to a union with God Himself. The 
Apostle says : " He who adheres to the 
Lord is one spirit ; " J and they who are 

* St. John i. 12. t Rom. viii. 14, 15. 

J 1 Cor. vi. 17. 



78 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

united, by the Spirit of God dwelling 
in them to our Divine Lord and Saviour, 
the Head of the mystical Body, partake 
of the sanctity and strength of His will. 
His will is transcribed into them ; they 
become partakers of the loves and the 
hatreds of Jesus Christ. Together with 
Him they love God and their neighbor, 
they hate sin and falsehood in all its 
forms. The will, according to the prom 
ise of God, becomes a law to itself. 
" This is the testament which I will 
make unto them after those days, saith. 
the Lord ; giving My laws in their 
hearts, and in their minds I will write 
them." * And the Apostle says, K The 
law is not made for the just man, but 
for the unjust and disobedient." f As 
the seven notes of the octave are not 
to be perpetually learned by the skilful 

* Heb x. 16. f 1 Tim. i. 9. 



OVER THE WILL OF MAN. 79 

musician, and the twenty-four letters of 
the alphabet are left behind by the cul 
tivated intellect, so the law of com 
mandments is no longer necessary to 
those who have the law of God written 
by the Holy Ghost upon their hearts. 
They fulfil, indeed, the letter of the 
commandments, because that is the 
least thing they can do; but that 
which is required of them is more than 
this. St. John says : " Every one that 
is born of God, doth not commit sin, 
for His seed remaineth in him, and he 
cannot sin, because he is born of 
God;"* that is, there grows up a 
moral impossibility to commit wilful 
sin. The love of God and our neigh 
bor makes it morally impossible that 
we should abuse our freedom of will by 
disobedience to God, and injustice to 

* 1 St. John iii. 9 



80 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

our neighbor. The hatred of sin, false 
hood, impurity, jealousy, malice, and 
the like, makes it morally impossible 
for the soul, renewed by the indwelling 
of the Spirit of God, to violate its own 
renewed nature by willingly doing 
these things. Therefore, the will be 
comes a law to itself, and it is so 
strengthened in the state of regenera 
tion that the Apostle could say: "I 
can do all things in Him who strength- 
eneth me."* When buffeted by the 
messenger of Satan, he thrice prayed 
to be delivered from, temptation } but 
the answer of God to him was, "My 
grace is sufficient for thee : for power 
is made perfect in infirmity ; : and he 
adds: "Gladly, therefore, will I glory 
in my infirmities, that the power of 
Christ may dwell in me." f And again, 

* Phil. iv. 13. t 2 Cor. xii. 9. 



OVER THE WILL OF MAN. 81 

" Work your salvation with fear and 
trembling ; " and for what reason ? 
"For it is God who worketh in you 
both to will and to accomplish, accord 
ing to His good will." * The supremacy 
of the good will of God, holy, pure, 
just and mighty, flows into the soul, 
and pervades the will of those, who. 
being born again, are subject to the 
sovereignty of God by the free action 
and use of their own deliberate will. 

5. Lastly, there is, as I have said be 
fore, a final relation of the will to God ; 
and that is the state of the blessed, 
when there will be no more temptation 
without, no more conflict within. We 
shall then have passed from a state of 
warfare, and from the condition of way 
farers, into the eternal rest and peace, 
in the vision of God. The intellect, il- 

* Phil. ii. 12, 13. 

6 



82 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

luminated by the Light of God, which 
is the Holy Ghost Himself, shall see 
Him. The will, united with the eternal 
love of God by the Holy Ghost, who is 
the Charity of God, will be eternally 
and indissolubly united to Him in obe 
dience and adoration of His perfect 
sovereignty, when God shall be all in 
all. This is the last and eternal perfec 
tion of the will. 

To draw from this one practical con 
clusion, let us remember what is our 
probation now. It is to subject our 
will to the will of God. And how does 
God illuminate us to know what that 
sovereignty is? I have already said, 
by faith. I have said that our submis 
sion to Him is the most rational and 
perfect act of our reason. Take, for 
example, the lights of nature, the exist 
ence of God, the distinctions of moral- 



OVEK THE WILL OF MAN. 83 

ity, the immortality of the soul. You 
would all hold, that any man who 
should refuse to submit his will to the 
sovereignty of God, revealing these 
things to us by the light of nature, 
would be guilty before Him of pride 
and infidelity. And why, but because 
the evidence for them is sufficient? 
Let us go one step farther. Is there 
not sufficient evidence in the world, by 
the lights of Christendom and by the 
effulgence of the Universal Church, 
which is "like the lightning which 
cometh out of the east, and shineth al 
so to the west ? Is not the testimony 
of the Universal Church throughout 
the world a sufficient light, or motive 
of credibility, to convince the intellect 
of man that that Church is the Church 
of God, and, therefore, that He found 
ed it? Is not the testimony of the 



84 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

Church itself sufficient to Convince 
any reasonable intellect, that He who 
founded it was the Son of God Incar 
nate ; and that, according to the prom 
ise of the Son of Grod, the Holy Ghost 
descended upon that Church, arid made 
it His dwelling-place and the organ of 
His voice, in which to preserve the 
original revelation of God ; and through 
which, as the organ of His voice, He 
makes that revelation known to the 
world ? And if there be a sufficient 
light to know these things, is not the 
intellect bound to submit itself to the 
uncreated reason of God, by whom 
these things are revealed ? And if so, 
is not the will, through the intellect, 
bound to submit itself to that light and 
sovereignty, which is thus made known ? 
And if so, the voice of the Church is 
the voice of God Himself: " He that 



OVER THE WILL OF MAN. 85 

heareth you, heareth Me ; : and the 
authority of that voice is Divine, and 
the unity of truth is Divine, and the 
duty of submitting to it is Divine. This 
light of faith comes to us through the 
most rational action of the human in 
tellect, and that act of faith is an act 
reasonable and free in all its parts. 
Faith is not a credulity, nor a supersti 
tion ; but they who will not believe are 
truly irrational and superstitious. They 
fall from perfect light into the twilight, 
where half-truths are seen, as " men 
like trees walking ; " * and believing in 
them, the intellect is warped and nar 
rowed. They who reject Divine faith 
believe in human opinions, which are 
both credulous and superstitious. What, 
then, is the whole of our life on earth 
but an education ? Is not the sover- 

* St. Mark viii. 24. 



86 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

eignty of God round about us? Are 
we not under its guidance, training, and 
discipline ? Is it not training us up to 
dwell in our Father s house ? Are not 
all the visitations and chastisements of 
our lot so many teachings of His Divine 
hand ? In joy and sorrow, prosperity 
and poverty, sickness or strength, 
are not all these distinctly Divine agen 
cies around us and upon us ? Are they 
not the manifestations of the Divine 
sovereignty over the course of our life ? 
And they who recognize, by the light 
of faith, the sovereignty of God in all 
things, will recognize the sovereignty 
of God in the daily and hourly details 
of their own personal life, and in the 
changes of their lot. They will not 
chafe against His will when He chas 
tises them, nor wear themselves out, 
nor break their hearts by contending 



OVER THE WILL OF MAN. 87 

with impossibilities; but, conforming 
their will to the sovereign will of God, 
and submitting gladly to it, they will 
be sustained and sanctified in their 
faith. 

And, further, there are two other 
ways in which the sovereignty of God 
works in us. The one is by the silent, 
secret, and sweet inspirations of His 
.grace, by the lights that fall upon our 
intellect without our asking for them, 
and the love that is poured out in the 
Divine superabundance of 1 [is gener 
osity and tenderness. As he makes the 
sun to rise upon the evil and the good, 
so He sends down the lights of truth 
on the intellects of those who have not 
sought for Him ; and He pours out over 
their hearts the drops of sweetness, of 
which the Psalmist speaks when he 
says, " Thou hast prevented him with 



88 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

blessings of sweetness." * This is some 
thing which, in experience, you all will 
know. You will understand me, though 
I cannot put it in words. There have 
been in your life times and seasons 
sometimes in joy, sometimes in sorrow, 
sometimes in prayer, sometimes in soli 
tude, sometimes in the midst of the 
world when there has come down 
almost a sensible sweetness to your 
taste, almost a perceptible fragrance in 
your thoughts. And what is this sweet 
ness and fragrance ? It is the Divine 
Presence scattering abroad " the bene 
dictions of sweetness." That fragrance 
comes from the golden censer which is 
in the hand of the angel before the 
throne. And why are these things- sent 
to us? To win and to persuade our 
wills freely to submit ourselves to His 

* Ps. xx. 4. 



OVER THE WILL OF MAN. 89 

sovereignty. And the way of His sov 
ereignty is the Blessed Sacrament upon 
the altar. The Sacred Heart of Jesus 
Christ our Lord and King is there al 
ways reigning, by the power of His 
love, attracting the human will in all 
its freedom to Himself. Out of the un 
willing, He creates the willing ; not by 
constraint, but by the sweetness of His 
Presence, which makes them volunta 
rily cast off their unbelief and disobedi 
ence, and of their own free will submit 
themselves to Him. 

Lastly, when hereafter we shall stand 
before Him as our King and Judge, the 
Apostle St. James declares that we shall 
be "judged by the law of liberty."* 
He bids us, therefore, to use it wisely : 
" So speak ye and so do, as being to be 
judged by the law of liberty." In that 

St. James ii. 12. 



90 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

day we shall not be judged for any 
thing we could not do or leave un 
done, nor for anything we could not 
know. We shall be judged for that 
which we might have known, and 
might have done or refrained from 
doing. We shall be tried by that 
which we have known and done ; 
and we shall be compelled to lay 
our hand upon our mouth, and to con 
fess that, in all our life, we never did 
evil in thought, word, or deed, but we 
might have refrained from doing it, 
and might have done good if we had 
had the will ; that every act of evil was 
a free act, and an irrational and immor 
al abuse of our will. 

Time forbids me now to draw out 
examples of this evident truth. Take 
any habit in which at this moment you 
may be entangled, such as ambition, 



OVER THE WILL OF MAN. 91 

pride, sloth, self-indulgence, jealousy, 
insincerity, be it what it may, tell 
rne whether the first acts of it were 
not perfectly voluntary, and the second 
and the third ay, and the first, sec 
ond, and third years of its continuance ? 
If now it has become ingrained in your 
character, if now you have become, 
and are at this time, proud, ambitious, 
slothful, jealous, insincere, so that you 
cry in secret : " I am so fast bound in 
these chains of iron, that I can never 
break -these bonds," know that you 
have forged them for yourselves, and 
at the last day will have to give 
an account of every several and vol 
untary act, whereby you have will 
ingly forged those links. You laid 

D v O 

them upon the anvil, and have de 
liberately welded them with your 
own hand, until with your own hand 



THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

you have bound yourselves in those 
chains. 

Lastly, we shall have to give an ac 
count of all the good we have left un 
done ; and it is certain that we neglect 
all day long opportunities of doing 
good, of making acts of love of God 
and our neighbor. In that day our 
Lord will say to each one of us : "I was 
hungry, and you gave Me not to eat ; 
I was thirsty, and you gave Me not to 
drink ; I was a stranger, and you took 
Me not in ; naked, and you clothed Me 
not; sick, and in prison, and you did 
not visit Me." * All the day long, our 
life and lot are full of these opportuni 
ties, and we allow them to pass away. 
They are golden opportunities, like the 
seed-time and the harvest, which, with 
all their treasures, pass with the year 

* St. Matt. xxv. 42, 43. 



OVER THE WILL OF MAN. 93 

and return no more. We shall have to 
give an account in that day of the free 
use we have made of all our manifold 
stewardship ; of the gifts of nature ; of 
the faculties of the soul ; of the graces 
of the Holy Ghost; of the providences 
of God over our life ; of the opportuni 
ties which have been so countless and 
so fertile, surpassing even our recogni 
tion ; and of all the loving visitations 
of God, whereby He would have 
brought us to Himself. 

Remember the words you have said 
this morning, and before you lie down 
will say to-night. Eemember what I 
have said, when on your knees you 
say the prayer which our Lord has 
taught us : " Thy kingdom come " 
let thy sovereignty reign over my 
will. " Thy will be done on earth, as 
it is in heaven," let thy most holy, 



THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOB 



most sweet, most perfect will be done 
in me, and by me, and about me, in 
all things, and always, now and for 
ever. 



OVER SOCIETY. 95 



LECTURE III. 

THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD OVER SOCIETY. 



" Behold, a King shall reign in justice, and 
princes shall reign in judgment" Isaias 
xxxii. 1. 

WHATSOEVER may be the first and 
typical fulfilment of this prophecy, no 
one can fail to see its true and ultimate 
fulfilment in the kingdom of Jesus 
Christ. It is a vision of that which is 
singular upon earth a just king ; that 
is, a king who, holding supreme power, 
reflects not only the authority of the 
King of kings, but also His character. 
Such a one is a king after God s own 



96 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

heart. Justice is the sum of the per 
fections of God, the bond of all the 
Divine attributes of wisdom, power, 
mercy, and sanctity. A just king, 
therefore, is one who, having supreme 
authority, uses it in wisdom, mercy, 
and equity. David s highest title of 
glory was, that he was a man after 
God s own heart. His heart was con 
formed to the King of kings, and in 
the exercise of his power, in making 
and in executing his laws, he manifest 
ed that heart of justice to his people. 
Such a kingdom is a kingdom of order, 
peace, liberty, and equality; because, 
whatever be their social and accidental 
inequalities, all subjects are, by the su 
preme authority, treated equally before 
the law. 

Such, then, is the vision of the proph 
ecy ; and it is more than a prophecy 



OVER SOCIETY. 97 

it is a promise. It not only foretells 
that such a kingdom of justice shall be, 
but it promises that that kingdom shall 
exist on earth. 

Now, I have already spoken to you 
of the sovereignty of God over the in 
tellect and over the will of individual 
men. Our submission to this sover 
eignty is, I explained, by the act of 
faith, in response to the command of 
God that we should believe ; and an 
act of obedience to His Divine will, as 
it is revealed to us, in response to the 
commandment that we should obey. 
What I have now to do is to extend 
this subject; and these two primary 
truths lie at the base of what I am 
about to add I mean the sovereignty 
of God over society. 

Society is a collection of individuals, 
not told by number, but united, ordered 

7 



98 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

and organized by an intrinsic law of 
their nature. For when God made man, 
He made society. Society was a part 
of the first creation ; society springs 
out of the creation of man, because 
from man comes the family, and from 
the family comes the people, and from 
the people comes the State. The whole 
civil order of the world is nothing but 
the growth of that society which lay 
in the first man, as the tree lies in the 
seed. Therefore in our very nature 
there is the society of mankind ; and, 
as I said before, society does not mean 
merely men told by the head. Num 
bers do not constitute a people. That 
which constitutes a people is the princi 
ple of order, authority, and law, social 
relations, social rights, social duty. 
Where those things are not, or are 
trampled down, there may be a multi- 



OVER SOCIETY. 99 

i 

tilde, but there cannot be a people. 
The gospel of the present day is not 
the gospel of the society which God 
created, but the gospel of anarchy. It 
declares that the multitude of men, told 
by number and voting by plebiscites, 
constitutes society. Therefore when I 
say that God has a sovereignty over 
society, I mean that he has a sover 
eignty over those ordered relations of 
man to man, constituted by Himself in 
the creation of mankind. The first 
principle, then, of society is authority ; 
the second is obedience ; and the third 
is mutual justice, whatsoever be the 
varied, accidental, and providential ine 
qualities between man and man. 

I affirm, then, that there is in this 
world, in the order of nature, such a 
society as I have described. And as the 
Son of God Incarnate redeemed man- 



100 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

kind by His precious Blood, so he has 
purchased for Himself, not only man 
with his individual intellect and will, 
but also the collective society of man 
as God created it. What we call Chris 
tianity is, in fact, the sovereignty of Je 
sus Christ over mankind. In so far as 
men are Christian, they are subjects 
of Jesus Christ; and in so far as they 
revolt from Him, they are but rebels, 
because He is the King of that society 
de jure, that is, by right, and de facto, 
that is, in fact. He is de jure? by right, 
King over every baptized soul ; and He 
is not only de jure, but de facto, King 
over all those that are faithful to His 
laws. Those who, being baptized, rebel 
against His law^s, are no longer subject 
to Him de facto ; but they are subject de 
jure, that is, by right, because they have 
been redeemed by Him, and regener- 



OVER SOCIETY. 101 

ated in baptism. What, then, I pur 
pose to show is, that there exists in the 
world a kingdom of which Jesus Christ 
is the King, and that He has a sover 
eignty, and exercises that sovereignty 
over it. The confusions we see in the 
w r orld are no contradiction to what I 
have said that He is, both by right 
and by fact, King and Sovereign over 
those who are faithful to His laws. He 
is sovereign still by right though, 
through their rebellion, not sovereign 
by fact over those who break those 
laws. 

Bear in mind, I am speaking of this 
kingdom as God has made it, and not 
as man has marred it. That kingdom, 
as God made it, I will now go on to 
describe ; that kingdom, as man has 
marred it, will be our subject hereafter. 

1. First, then, when the Son of God 



102 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

became incarnate, He came into the 
world, and gathered His disciples about 
Him. In that act He founded His king 
dom. The preaching of John was : 
" The kingdom of heaven is at hand." * 
The kingdom of heaven came when 
God was manifested in the flesh, by His 
death redeemed the world, by His res 
urrection vindicated His sovereignty, 
and by his ascension took possession 
of His throne. By His Incarnation He 
had deified the nature of man, and not 
only restored, but elevated, man above 
his previous state in creation. He ele 
vated not only man, but the society of 
man, which, as I said, lies in man s very 
nature. The first Adam was mere man, 
united with God, indeed ; but through 
his disobedience he wrecked himself, 
and in himself all the society of man- 

* St. Matt. iii. 2. 



OVER SOCIETY. 103 

kind. The second Adam is the Son of 
God Incarnate, in whom man is not only 
redeemed and elevated, but the whole 
society of mankind also ; and neither 
man nor the society of man can again 
be wrecked, in so far as it is obedient 
and faithful to the Incarnate Son of 
God. 

I will say, then, for clearness sake, 
that the society He founded is His mys 
tical Body, or the Church, as we shall 
hereafter see. Our Divine Lord restored 
man and society in His person, when He 
deified our manhood, our intelligence, 
heart, will, our whole nature, soul and 
body. When He gathered His disciples 
about Him, He elevated them also. He 
illuminated them with the knowledge 
of God and His kingdom ; He infused 
into them the grace of His Holy Spirit ; 
He shed abroad in their heart the law 



104 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

of love to God and man ; He inspired 
their will with the law of obedience : 
He elevated them above the natural 
state in which they were born. " That 
which is born of the flesh is flesh," and 
such they were at their first birth. 
" That which is born of the Spirit is 
spirit/ and such they were by contact 
with the Son of God in the regenera 
tion. And being elevated to a higher 
state of faith, light, love, and obedience, 
He assimilated them to Himself; He 
changed them into His own likeness. 
The first Adam was defaced and disfig 
ured, the image and likeness of God 
in him were shattered ; but the likeness 
and image of God were manifested 
again, in their perfection, in the face 
of Jesus Christ. As St. Paul says : " God, 
who commanded the light to shine out 
of darkness, hath shined in our hearts 



OVER SOCIETY. 105 

to give the light of the knowledge 
of the glory of God, in the face of Je 
sus Christ." * Again he says : " We all, 
beholding the glory of the Lord with 
face uncovered, are transformed into the 
same image from glory to glory, as by 
the Spirit of the Lord." -j- And St. John 
writes : " We saw His glory, the glory 
as of the Only-begotten of the Father, 
full of grace and truth. . . . And of His 
fulness we all have received, and grace 
for grace ; " J that is to say, the fellow 
ship of the disciples with their Lord, 
His daily conversation with them, the 
assimilating power of His life and of 
His example, changed them. Their 
heart, mind, and will were gradu 
ally transfigured into His own like 
ness; and as he changed them into His 

* 2 Cor. iv. 6. f 2 Cor. iii. 18. 

J St. John i. 14, 16. 



106 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

own likeness, so He united them to 
gether. They became of one mind, 
one heart, one will ; they had one faith, 
one vision of God, one Guide, one 
Teacher, one law. There was wrought 
in them an intrinsic change, which per 
fectly united them one with another; 
so that their thoughts, affections, voli 
tions, being subject by faith to the sov 
ereignty of their Divine Master, were 
assimilated to each other. There grew 
up an intrinsic unity in the hearts of 
the disciples; arid therefore the exter 
nal unity with which they adhered to 
Him and to one another, was the result 
and consequence of this internal unity 
of mind and will. He thus organized 
them together. He made one of them 
to be the first, and all the rest to be 
equal. He gave to that one an author 
ity, and He gave to them all a partici- 



OVER SOCIETY. 107 

pation, not of that sole primacy, but of 
all other powers which He gave to 
Peter, and so knit them into one per 
fect society, of which He Himself was 
the visible Head whilst on earth, and 
His Vicar when He ascended into 
heaven. This is what we call His 
Church, or Mystical Body. 

When He ascended into heaven and 
sent the Holy Ghost, His disciples and 
all who believed in Him were united 
to Him by the indwelling of the Spirit 
of God. He thereby became their Head. 
They became His members, and were 
members one with another in one or 
ganized body, so compacted and fitted 
together, that as the body of a man, 
quickened and animated by one life, 
grows to its perfection, so with the Mys 
tical Body of Christ. He bestowed on 
it a participation of His own preroga- 



108 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

tives : it became imperishable, because 
He has immortal life ; it became indis- 
solubly one, because He is the only Son 
of God ; it became infallible, because 
He is the Divine Truth, and He cannot 
err, and the Spirit of Truth inhabits it ; 
it became sovereign in the world, be 
cause it is the representative of Himself, 
and exercises His sovereignty among 
the nations of the earth. 

Such, then, was the first founding of 
His kingdom. In its expansion after 
wards, when he said to His disciples, 
" All power in heaven and earth is given 
unto Me; go ye, therefore, and teach 
all nations," He claimed sovereignty in 
the most ample and explicit terms. He 
who has all authority, lacks nothing. 
There is no power supreme over Him 
who has all authority. And having all 
power, He therefore said to them : " 



OVER SOCIETY. 109 

dispose unto you a kingdom, as My 
Father hath disposed unto Me." More 
explicit language could not be found to 
declare that the power which He gave 
to His Apostles was a royal power ; that 
it was a participation of His own sov 
ereignty, and given in virtue of the 
right of delegation which He received 
from His Father. When He said : "My 
kingdom is not of this world," He did 
not intend as some blindly and almost 
incomprehensibly misunderstand Him 
that He denied His kingdom to be 
in this world. He affirmed it to be in 
this world, but not of it ; that is, that 
the source of its authority, the fountain 
of its jurisdiction, the sanctions of its 
laws, the powers of its executive, are 
from His Eternal Father. It therefore 
does not derive its authority, sover 
eignty, jurisdiction, powers, rights, from 



110 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

this world. All these are not of men, 
but of God. They are not the grants 
or concessions of kings, princes, legis 
latures; nor do they come from the 
multitude by universal suffrage. They 
are of God, delegations of the Eternal 
King to His Incarnate Son. They are 
supernatural, Divine, intangible by hu 
man control, imperishable, sovereign 
over all. 

2. When, therefore, He sent out His 
Apostles, it was to execute the same 
commission He had received Himself. 
What He was among the Apostles, they 
were to be among the nations of the 
world. They began by elevating men 
and families wheresoever they went. 
They communicated the same light, 
faith, grace, and laws, which they had 
first received. The illumination of faith, 
the gift of regeneration, the grace of 



OVER SOCIETY. Ill 

the Holy Sacraments, the laws of the 
kingdom of God, the Ten Command 
ments interpreted not in the letter only 
but in the spirit, the Two Precepts of 
Charity, the Eight Beatitudes; these 
were the laws of the heavenly kingdom, 
and these the Apostles gave to the na 
tions of the world The nations of the 
world, so far as they received those 
laws, were elevated to a higher order, 
and were assimilated to the Master from 
whom those laws were derived. As 
faith and the laws of Christianity, they 
took possession of men, of households, 
and of people; they were assimilated 
to the same pattern and the same per 
fection. When the Apostle said : " Be 
ye also followers of me, as I also am of 
Christ," * he meant to say, " In me you 

* 1 Cor. xi. 1. 



112 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

see the dimmed and imperfect reflection 
of that perfect image and pattern which 
I am bid to represent ; follow me, as I 
follow Christ. I am indeed among you 
as an example ; so far as I truly repre 
sent Him to whom all men, illuminated 
by faith, are to be conformed the 
Second Adam, the Son of God, who 
is now at the right hand of His Father." 
As they were assimilated to that type, 
they were united together by the in 
fused grace of charity, and by the super 
natural union, which drew the world 
to believe in the Unity of God. That 
supernatural and miraculous union of 
the first Christians was the testimony 
and proof of the Unity of God, from 
whom they received their law. As our 
Divine Lord prayed to His Father : 
" That they also may be one in Us, that 
the world may believe that Thou hast 



OVER SOCIETY. 113 

sent Me."* And the world beheld in 
wonder, if it did not yet believe. The 
world acknowledged this supernatural 
unity, saying: "See how these Chris 
tians love one another." It was a phe 
nomenon never seen before, a fruit that 
never grew on any other tree, since sin 
cursed the earth. As they were united, 
so they were organized together ; and 
there grew up in the world the true 
Vine and the branches, the one world 
wide organization, the one life-giving 
society of men united by baptism, 
faith, and worship ; by submission to one 
authority ; by the recognition of one 
visible Head the sole fountain of su 
pernatural knowledge and supernatural 
power. There was one hand which 
held the two keys of jurisdiction and 
of science that is, of supreme power 

* St. John xvii, 21. 
8 



114 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

and of the perfect knowledge of faith : 
and that one hand was the hand of him 
who bears the representative character 
of the Vicar of his Divine Master. In 
this organization which, being visible, 
speaks to the eye, and having a living 
voice speaks audibly to the ear there 
was a work of God s grace, even more 
supernatural, more perfect, and more 
marvellous. The Church has a visible 
body ; so had the old Roman Empire ; 
so has now the Empire of Britian : but 
the Church has what they had not it 
has a soul, and that soul consists in a 
spiritual unity, which emanates from 
God the Holy Ghost, who dwells in it, 
and animates it by faith, hope, and 
charity by the seven gifts of the Holy 
Ghost, by the Eight Beatitudes in their 
ripeness and perfection, by the law of 
charity to God and man thereby pro- 



OVER SOCIETY. 115 

ducing a perfect internal unity of mind, 
intellect, conscience and will, which 
God alone can create. This unity of 
the Church, both external and internal, 
which the world is always endeavoring 
to destroy, yet can neither destroy nor 
deny, stands perpetually in the world 
as the Visible Witness of the sover 
eignty of Jesus Christ. But we have 
not yet reached to the full meaning of 
these words. 

3. I have, thus far, described the 
Church in its root, as our Lord planted 
it ; and in its extension, as the Apostles 
spread it abroad. Thenceforward it 
has grown as a tree, rising in stature 
and strength, overshadowing the whole 
world. But the action of the Church 
among the nations has been to create 
the Christian world. By the Christian 
world, I mean that the Church has per- 



116 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

vaded, penetrated, and outwardly gov 
erned races and nations of men, who 
are not all internally obedient by faith 
and charity to the laws of grace. More 
than this, it has controlled the material 
power, the physical or brute force of 
mankind. There are but two kinds of 
force in the world material and mor 
al ; and the force of the sovereignty of 
Jesus Christ is the moral force of law 
and right. The force of man is the 
force of his arm, of his will, of combi 
nation, coercion, criminal codes, capital 
punishment, warfare, conflicts between 
nation and nation until one beats the 
other down and tramples in its blood. 
This is the sovereign power of man 
kind, unrestrained by the sovereignty 
of Jesus Christ. Such it was before 
that sovereignty was revealed from 
heaven ; such it would be again, if that 



OVER SOCIETY. 117 

sovereignty could ever cease ; such it 
is always and everywhere, in propor 
tion as that sovereignty grows weak in 
its control over the hearts of men. 

This moral power of law and right, 
first acting upon individuals, then upon 
households, then upon cities, then upon 
races, began to create the new Chris 
tian civilization. The Church pos 
sessed, in the time of St. Gregory the 
Great, three-and-twenty provinces. The 
possessions over which the Yicar of 
Jesus Christ ruled, until sacrilege 
robbed him the other day, were called 
the Patrimony of the Church ; and 
some twenty-three like to it were pos 
sessed by St Gregory the Great. They 
extended over the greater part of Italy, 
the south of France, along the shores 
of the Adriatic, the north of Africa, 
Sicily, the islands of the Mediterra- 



118 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

nean. Divine providence so ordered 
that these patrimonies, being commit 
ted to the patriarchal care and govern 
ment of the Yicar of Jesus Christ 
should become the first portions of hu 
man society which were reduced to 
obedience to the Christian law. In 
these patrimonies the germs of Chris 
tian civilization were planted. They 
first received the Christian law of mar 
riage, the abolition of slavery, Christian 
education of children, just arbitration 
of Christian judges, mutual respect, fair 
dealing between man and man. They 
became the first provinces of that Chris 
tian world which has now grown up in 
to the maturity of Christendom. There 
is not to be found in history anything 
more beautiful, more patriarchal, or re 
flecting more brightly the peaceful and 
majestic justice of our Divine Lord in 



OVER SOCIETY. 119 

the Mountain, legislating in the Eight 
Beatitudes, than the paternal sway of 
St. Gregory the Great, the Apostle of 
England. Those twenty-three patri 
monies of the Church, as I have said 
elsewhere,* wrought as the leaven in 
the rneal ; and the Christian civilization 
ripened in them, became the germ of 
the Christian civilization w r hich after 
wards formed the nations of Christian 
Europe. Where, then, were Spain, 
France, Germany, and England ? They 
were races, divided in conflict. Some 
were wild in their ferocity ; others had 
sunk again into paganism \ some had 
not yet emerged from it. There was 
then no Christian Europe, such as we 
now know it. St. Gregory the Great 
ruled over those patrimonies, and 
ripened the first spring of the Chris- 

* Four Evils of the Day, pp. 85, 86. 



120 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

tian world. He sowed broadcast in 
the furrows of Europe those seeds of 
Christian progress and order of which 
men at this day are so proud, though 
they are trampling them down. Then 
the nations began to spring Lorn- 
bardy, Spain, France, Germany, and 
England. It was the action of the 
Vicar of Jesus Christ which made them 
what they are. Spain was torn by 
heresy, invaded by Saracens, infected 
by Judaism, divided into conflicting 
kingdoms, when the Councils of Toledo, 
legislating by the precepts of the Chris 
tian law, knit together the many races 
of the peninsula into one great people. 
So it was in England. The Heptarchy 
was in perpetual conflict, seven king 
doms warring against each other, until 
Christianity, entering and subduing 
them to one faith, one law, one su- 



OVER SOCIETY. 121 

preme Pastor, blended them into one ; 
and the Christian monarchy of England 
arose, and endures to this day. So was 
it with other nations of our Christian 
world. And after this was done, an 
other work began: they were then 
united together, and Christendom arose. 
What the Church had done in Spain 
and England, it did throughout the 
whole of Europe. It knit the nations 
together jnto a federation of Christian 
kingdoms and people, and created the 
unity and order of Christendom, which 
is the manifestation of the sovereignty 
of Jesus Christ over the civil powers 
of the world. But this subject is too 
large : I can but sum it up in these 
few words. 

What has the world, then, gained by 
the sovereignty of Jesus Christ ? The 
extinction of slavery, and let any 



122 THE SOVEREIGNTY OP GOD 

man weigh wheat those words mean, re 
membering what slavery W 7 as in the 
ancient world. Secondly, the sanctifi- 
cation of Christian households, by the 
laws of domestic purity and the laws 
of marriage. Thirdly, the Christian 
education of children. Fourthly, the 
redemption of woman ; the raising her 
from the degradation in which she was 
before her regeneration in Christ, to be 
the handmaid of the Immaculate Moth 
er of God, and to be respected by men, 
as being the image of the Mother of 
their Redeemer. Once more, the re 
straining of warfare, which before was 
the lawless and brute violence of men 
and nations, without recognition of 
mercy and justice. War itself was 
tempered with mercy under the legis 
lation of the Church and the supreme 
arbitrament of the Vicar of Jesus 



OVER SOCIETY. 123 

Christ. Again, the civil code of every 
country, which still retained, even in 
its Christianity, the severity and san 
guinary rigor of its past, was gradually 
mitigated from age to age, until the 
severities of the old world were in 
great measure effaced. In passing, let 
me protest against a common and mon 
strous inversion of the truth. The 
Church is accused of sanctioning and 
encouraging severities in the criminal 
code, which the milder legislation of 
princes has mitigated. The Church al 
ways retained the severities of law to 
the utmost of its power, from age to 
age ; but the hands of men in iron 
mail w T ere too strong to be stayed by 
the light pastoral staff of the Church. 
The Church wmild have extinguished 
long ago the cruelties of the penal 
code, if it had obtained the power. 



124 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

There was also introduced among: the 

o 

society of men a quality never known 
before the charity of the Sacred 
Heart of Jesus. The manifold charity 
of the Good Shepherd and of the Good 
Physician, tenderness to the sick, to 
the sorrowing, to the orphan, to the 
widow, to the prisoner, to the outcast, 
to the poor, these are the ripe fruits 
of the Sermon on the Mount, and came 
from no other tree. Again, mutual re 
spect among all classes and ranks of 
men. When I say respect, I do not 
mean only or chiefly the respect of 
the lower for those above them, but I 
mean emphatically the respect of those 
in authority for those who are beneath 
them, because they see in them the 
image of God, and the purchase of the 
Precious Blood of Jesus Christ. 

These, then, are some of the fruits 



OVER SOCIETY. 125 

of the Christian civilization, which the 
world had never known before. The 
sovereignty of Jesus Christ consists 
therefore in this : that whereas, in the 
order of nature, there was a human 
society such as I first described, and 
whereas in the order which is super 
natural there is a society created by 
our Divine Lord Himself, which is 
His Church, the sovereignty of Jesus 
Christ consists in the Union of those 
two creations of God ; in their perfect 
amity, intimate concord, mutual co-ope 
ration, united recognition of One Mas 
ter, One Lord, One Sovereign; or, in 
other words, that what is called the 
Church and State form one sovereignty, 
under one Supreme Head. Woe to the 
man, woe to the people, that preach 
their separation ! Woe to the world, 
when they shall be separated ! The 



126 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

prophet Isaias, foretelling the sover 
eignty of this Just King, describes it 
thus : " The land that was desolate and 
impassable shall be glad ; and the wil 
derness shall rejoice, and shall flourish 
like the lily. It shall bud forth and 
blossom, and shall rejoice with joy and 
praise. The glory of Libanus is given 
to it ; the beauty of Carmel and Saron ; 
they shall see the glory of the Lord, 
and the beauty of our God."* And 
again he says, speaking of the man of 
faith : " His eyes shall see the king in 
his beauty "-f Who is the king but 
Jesus Christ? what is the beauty but 
the manifestation of his kingdom ? Per 
haps some will say : " Yes, in heaven." 
I answer : " Yes ; but also upon earth ; 
or what do you mean day by day in 
praying, Thy kingdom come ; Thy will 

* Isaias xxxv. 1, 2. f Ibid, xxxiii. 17. 



OVER SOCIETY. 127 

be done on earth as it is in heaven ? 
To be blind to God s kingdom in the 
midst of us is Judaism. When the 
Messias came, the men of Jerusalem 
were looking for a king of glory. When 
He came in humiliation, they did not 
know Him. As the Apostle says : " For 
if they had known it, they would never 
have crucified the Lord of glory." * 
Men are now going the same way ; 
they are postponing the manifestation 
of His kingdom to the future, shut 
ting it up in the unseen world, that it 
may not trouble our peace with its jus 
tice or disturb our politics with its au 
thority. 

There are two consequences to be 
drawn from what I have said. The one 
is this: that though His kingdom as 
our Lord Himself said is not of this 

* 1 Cor. ii. 8. 



128 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

world, it is nevertheless here as the 
sphere of its manifestation. The king 
dom of Jesus Christ, then, the Church 
and the Christian world, are here and 
visible ; and they are not only here and 
visible, but they are local. Under the 
Old Law, Jerusalem was the head of 
Israel, the centre from which the Law 
went forth; there was the sanctuary 
and the priesthood ; there too was the 
Temple, in which the high-priest minis 
tered ; and all this was typical. " For 
the law having a shadow of good 
things to come, not the very image of 
the things," * the substance came under 
the New Law. What, then, corresponds 
now to Jerusalem under the Old Law ? 
It is the cant of controversy, it is the 
affectation of scepticism, for any man to 
shut his eyes and pretend that Chris- 



* Hob. x. 1. 



OVER SOCIETY. 129 

tendom, which he admits to have a cir 
cumference, has no centre. It is the 
audacity of unbelief to say, that the 
centre has been any other than Rome. 
No man, with the page of history be 
fore him, can find any other solution 
of the things I have been saying, ex 
cept in the history of the Pontiffs, the 
Vicars of Jesus Christ. Rome is visibly 
and self-evidently the head and centre 
of the Christian order. Rome is as 
surely the seat of the sovereignty of 
God in the Church of the Gentiles as 
Jerusalem was in that of the Jews. 
The Vicar of the Incarnate Word dwells 
tfcere by the dispensation of Divine 
Providence. The world has striven to 
cast him out for eighteen centuries, and 
has never been able to displace him. 
Five-and-forty times it has striven to 
drive him out, or to keep him out, or to 
9 



130 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

overturn the throne of the Vicar of 
Jesus Christ ; but in vain. If he disap 
pear for a moment, in a little while he 
is to be found once more reigning at the 
Tomb of the Apostles. If he be absent 
for half a century, his return is only 
the more supernatural. Such is the 
mere matter of fact. But I will go on 
to something that men will not deny. 
Borne has been the Mother of Church 
es. It may not, indeed, have been the 
Mother of all the Churches, because the 
Apostles went out from Jerusalem, and 
the disciples were first called Christians 
at Antioch. But if Rome has not been 
the Mother of all the Churches of the 
East, assuredly it is the Mother of the 
Churches of the West. It is the Mother 
of the Christianity of Ireland, of Eng 
land, of Germany ; and so I might go 
on. It has been the Mother of the 



OVER SOCIETY. 131 

Churches of the West, and the Foster- 
mother of the Churches of the world. 
It has ever been and ever must be the 
Teacher and Guide of Churches, the 
Chief Witness of the Incarnation, the 
Chief Apostle of what our Lord taught, 
of what our Lord commanded ; the 
Chief Judge of all controversies, the 
Chief Interpreter of the faith, the Chief 
Doctor and Pastor of the Universal 
Church. So the Council of Florence 
declares, and so the Council of the Vat 
ican the other day expounded, with a 
voice which is infallible, in virtue of 
that same special promise of Divine 
assistance made by the Son of God to 
Peter, and in him to all who sit in his 
seat forever. 

Not only so, but, as I have already 
very briefly traced, Rome is the mother 
of nations. If it be Christianity which 



132 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

has civilized the world, it is Rome which 
has sustained Christianity. The patrimo 
nies of the Church were the seed-plot 
of Europe. And for all these causes 
and reasons, Eorne is the capital of 
Christendom. It was never the capital 
of Italy. When Italy and Eome were 
one, Italy was united to Rome, and not 
Rome to Italy. Rome had a world-wide 
empire, of which Italy was a part. The 
claim of that part to appropriate the 
whole is a stupendous usurpation. It 
is a usurpation upon your rights, and 
upon mine, and upon the rights of 
every Christian nation and every Chris 
tian man under heaven. 

From east to west the whole of Chris 
tendom claims Rome as its head and as 
its home ; and every nation throughout 
the world goes up to Rome, as the tribes 
of Israel went up to Jerusalem. God 



OVER SOCIETY. 133 

has so ordered it. There are two spe 
cial reasons why we hold it so to be, 
both a matter of faith and a matter of 
principle. 

First, God has so ordered the organi- 

r 

zation, constitution, and authority of 
His visible Church on earth. He has 
made Rome the seat of the Vicar of 
His Incarnate Son ; and from that seat 
or throne goes forth the supreme au 
thority, both of jurisdiction and of doc 
trine, whereby the purity and the lib 
erty of the Church throughout the world 
are perpetually preserved. Satan is 
wise enough to know that, if he can 
strike a blow on the head, he is inflict 
ing a deadly wound upon the whole 
body; and for that reason the warfare 
from the beginning has been against 
Eome. This is one reason. 

The other is : that Eome is the bond 



134 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

or link between the two societies, natu 
ral and supernatural, of which I have 
been speaking. In the one person who 
is both Pontiff and King, the two soci 
eties and the two authorities in the 
world, spiritual and temporal, are uni 
ted. As we have seen that the union 
of these is the will and purpose of our 
Divine Redeemer, we therefore insist 
upon it as a matter of principle. Every 
power, whatsoever it be, that attempts 
to dissolve the union which God has 
created, is fighting against God. We 
contend for this, not so much for the 
sake of the Church, which is imperish 
able, and will live to the end of the 
world in all the plenitude of its majes 
ty, but for the sake of the civil society 
of mankind, which, as we shall see 
hereafter, when separated from Chris 
tianity, will go to dissolution. 



OVER SOCIETY. 135 

What, then, is it that men call the 
temporal power of the Pope? I am 
weary of the words. It simply means 
this, the union, in one person, of the 
supreme authority which links together 
the two societies God has created for 
the sanctification of mankind. You 
know full well there never was any 
period of Christianity in which the 
spiritual authority of Rome first, and 
next its temporal power, has not been 
the special object of assault. You know 
the events at this moment. Do not be 
afraid. Fear nothing. As long as the 
Christian world exists, the Christian 
world will recognize Jesus Christ to be 
the Son of God, and the Pontiff to be 
His Vicar. It will obey the law of jus 
tice which consecrates the providential 
order whereby he is a sovereign among 
kings. Though this may be overcloud- 



136 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

% 

ed for a moment, as it has been forty 
times before, and may be a forty-first, 
it will not be destroyed. If it were, the 
Christian world would have committed 
suicide; but I have better hopes. *Do 
not fear, then. The Scottish nation, 
when, by an unhappy vehemence, they 
cast off their obedience to the Vicar of 
Jesus Christ, and also the authority of 
the bishops who were set over them, 
had the faith and the wisdom to retain 
two things, which they hold fast to this 
day the absolute independence of 
man and of conscience, in all things 
spiritual, of all civil powers ; and also 
what they call, in true and expressive 
language, " the crown-rights of Jesus 
Christ ;* that is to say, the sovereignty 
of our Divine Lord, and of His king 
dom, over all rulers and civil laws. 
Seeing a great nation retain these two 
principles, I have hopes for it. 



OVER SOCIETY. 137 

You, as children of the Catholic 
Church, have not only retained those 
things, but you have retained them 
with the pastoral care of the Apostles, 
and with the supreme authority of the 
Vicar of Jesus Christ. You owe him, 
therefore, fidelity, obedience of heart, 
of mind, and will, submission of intel 
lect and of all your powers to the re 
vealed law of God. You owe him a 
generous obedience. That which we 
call the spirit of a good Catholic means 
a generous love and generous fidelity, 
as to the Delegate of a Divine Master 
and a Divine King, who is our King by 
right and by fact. Honor him, then ; 
love him, and obey him. The-desolate 
and impassable land, which once blos 
somed as the lily, is growing desolate 
and impassable once more. Wars choke 
up its highways, armed men are upon 



138 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD. 

all its paths, desolation and barrenness 
are where the smiling fields and waving 
harvests were a year ago and this is a 
type of the Christian world as it is be 
fore God. The glory of Libanus, and 
the beauty of Saron and of Carmel, are 
trampled down ; but be not afraid. 
The words of the prophet are the 
words of God : " I beheld in the visions 
of the night, and lo, one like the Son 
of Man came in the clouds of heaven, 
and He came even to the Ancient of 
Days; and they presented Him before 
Him. And He gave Him power, and 
glory, and a kingdom; and all peo 
ples, tribes, and tongues shall serve 
Him : His power is an everlasting 
power, that shall not be taken away; 
and His kingdom that shall not be 
destroyed." * 

* Daniel vii. 13, 14. 



DIVINE HEAD OF THE CHURCH. 139 



LECTURE IV. 

THE SOVEREIGNTY OF THE DIVINE HEAD 
OF THE CHURCH. 



"lam the Resurrection and the Life: he that 
believeth in Me, although He be dead, shall 
live : and every one that liveth, and believ- 
eth in Me, shall not die for ever." John xi. 
25, 26. 

IN the end of the Sabbath, and in 
the dawn of the morning, Mary Mag 
dalene and the other Mary came to the 
sepulchre. And there was a great 
earthquake. The angel of the Lord 
descended from heaven, and rolled 
away the stone from the door of the 
sepulchre, and sat upon it. His face 



140 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF THE 

was as the lightning, and his raiment 
white as snow ; and for fear of him, the 
soldiers who kept the sepulchre trem 
bled, and were as dead men. And he 
said to the women : Fear not you, for 
ye seek Jesus who was crucified. He 
is not here. He is risen. Come, see 
the place where the Lord was laid. 

Tn this was fulfilled the declaration 
of Jesus bv the tomb of Lazarus : " I 

/ 

am the Resurrection and the Life." He 
did not say: "I will give life, I will 
raise from the dead." He said : " I am 
the Life, I am the Resurrection ; the 
Life and the Resurrection are Myself." 
That is : "I am Who am, the Self-exist 
ent, the Life and the Life-giver." The 
Life is God, and God is the Life of all 
things. He is the Fountain of life ; 
and He who is the Fountain of life is 
alone the Resurrection. He who can 



DIVINE HEAD OF THE CHURCH. 141 

give life is alone He who can restore 
life. To do this is a Divine and sover 
eign act, and is the prerogative of God 
only. Therefore, by the Resurrection, 
our Divine Lord is manifested in His 
Godhead, in the sovereignty of His 
power, in His victory over sin and 
death, and in His royalty over the cre 
ation of God. This is also the mean 
ing of His words when He said : " I am 
the Good Shepherd. The Good Shep 
herd giveth His life for His sheep. . . . 
Therefore doth My Father love Me, be 
cause I lay down My life, that I may 
take it again. No man taketh it away 
fr<3m Me ; I lay it down of myself, and 
I have power to lay it down, and I have 
power to take it up again." * His Incar 
nation, His Death, His Resurrection, 
were all alike sovereign acts of Divine 
will and of Divine power. 

* St. John x. 11-18. 



142 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF THE 

1. In His Incarnation, by an act of 
His own Divine will, He took our hu 
manity, assuming the intelligence of a 
human soul, and uniting it with the 
Uncreated Intelligence, which is the Son 
of God ; and in assuming a human soul 
like ours a soul perfect in reason, 
heart, and will He_j3eatified it ; that 
is, it was admitted to the Beatific Vision 
and to the Beatific Union. His man 
hood was elevated above the order of 
nature. It was deified, but it was hu 
man still. In assuming a human soul, 
He likewise assumed a human body, 
and in all things a body like our own 
with the same flesh, and bones, and 
nerves, and blood ; with the same sus 
ceptibility of suffering, the same capaci 
ty of pain, of hunger, thirst, sorrow, 
weariness, passion, and death. And be 
cause He took to Himself a human 



DIVINE HEAD OF THE CHURCH. 143 

nature whole and perfect, there were 
two natures alike whole and perfect 
Godhead and manhood united in One 
Person. No human person was there, 
but One only Person, and that Divine 
God Himself Incarnate. Over the Di 
vine countenance He drew the veil of 
His humanity, so that the splendor 
and glory of His Person were hidden 
from the eyes of men. On Mount Ta 
bor, for a moment, the light of His 
majesty was seen; but in the years of 
His humiliation, His humanity alone 
was manifest to sense. The veil was 
upon the face of His Godhead. 

2. As, then, the assumption of our 
humanity was an act of His free and 
sovereign will, so also was the laying 
down of His life. He gave Himself to 
suffer. He gave His Body to the 
scourge, and to the thorns, and to the 



144 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF THE 

nails. He was furrowed, pierced, and 
wounded by the instruments of passion. 
His Precious Blood streamed from Him, 
His vital spirit was drained away. He 
gave His Soul to three and thirty years 
of mental sorrows, and to His derelic 
tion in the Garden, and to the darkness 
of His agony. When the hour was 
come, by His own free sovereign will 
He untied the knot of Almighty pow 
er, whereby body and soul, in man, are 
joined together. The "silver cord 1 
was broken, and He bowed His head, 
and by a sovereign act gave up the 
ghost. The Passion was indeed a suf 
ficient cause of death to any human 
nature : nevertheless, His dying was 
voluntary ; for He had power to sustain 
His human life ; but, by His own free, 
sovereign, and Divine will, He withheld 
that sustaining power, and by a volun 
tary act gave up the ghost. 



DIVINE HEAD OF THE CHURCH. 145 

3. And as He laid down His life by a 
free act of His own will, so He resumed 
it again. In the moment when the 
Divine Soul of Jesus parted from the 
Body, it passed forever from the desola 
tion of His agony into the light of the 
Vision of God. Throughout His earthly 
life of sorrow He was at all times in 
the Vision of God. In the hour of His 
desolation, He willingly hid it from 
Him ; but when that passing cloud upon 
the light of His soul was over, He en 
tered again and forever into the light 
of bliss. The deified human soul of 
Jesus in that moment entered, in our 
behalf, into the final possession and the 
eternal fruition of the glory of God. 
The light of the Sun of Justice then 
arose upon the world unseen. The 
realms beyond the grave where the 
patriarchs, prophets, saints, martyrs, 
10 



146 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF THE 

penitents of the Old Law, waited for 
the Kedeemer were illuminated by 
His coming ; the invisible world, which 
in our Creed we call Hell ; the realm 
of the departed, in which were waiting 
together though parted and distinct 
in companies the saints of the king 
dom of God, though the kingdom of 
God was not yet opened ; those also 
who were purifying and expiating for 
the Vision of God, to be revealed here 
after; and those who were lost eter 
nally. 

To all He was made known : to the 
saints as their Eedeemer, fulfilling the 
promise made to the faithful who had 
looked for Him from the beginning of 
the world ; to the penitent who had 
turned in hope to the promise of a 
Eedeemer and to the lost, who would 
not believe the Word of God. To them 



DIVINE HEAD OF THE CHURCH. 147 

was revealed the light of the truth and 
of the majesty of God against whom 
they had sinned. They had in their 
day received light enough to know Him, 
and grace enough in all hours, and in 
all temptations, to have turned from sin 
to God, and to have attained salvation, 
had they only willed to be saved. 

While this Divine work was accom 
plishing, the Body was taken from the 
Cross ; but never for one moment was 
either the body or the soul of His hu 
manity separated from the Godhead of 
the Eternal Son. The body and soul 
were parted indeed from each other in 
natural death, but the body and soul 
were alike united indissolubly by the 
Hypostatic Union that is, by the per 
sonal assumption of our manhood into 
God to the Person of the Eternal 
Son. From the moment of the Incar- 



148 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF THE 

nation to all eternity, Jesus remains the 
same indissolubly, two natures in one 
Person. As the soul of Jesus in the 
world unseen was a manifestation of 
God, so the Body which hung lifeless 
on the Cross the lifeless form which, 
when the nails were drawn from the 
hands and feet, was lowered into the 
bosom of His Immaculate Mother 
was the Body of the Incarnate Son of 
God. With loving care it was swathed 
in the grave clothes, it was anointed 
with the ointments, it was embalmed 
with the spices, it was borne lovingly 
to the tomb, and laid in the sepulchre 
upon the mouth of which the stone was 
rolled. But it was not ointments or 
spices that embalmed that Sacred Body : 
there was no need of them to stay cor 
ruption ; over that Body corruption had 
no power, because union with the God- 



DIVINE HEAD OF THE CHURCH. 149 

x 

head sustained its incorruption. The 
true embalming of that Sacred Flesh 
was its union with the Godhead ; and 
that Sacred Flesh was incorruptible be 
cause the Son of God, by His sovereign 
will, stayed the progress of the dis 
honors of the grave. 

Then came the re-assumption, by the 
same free act of His sovereign power. 
All through that night, while the 
watches were set, and the guards kept 
the sepulchre, and the seals remained 
unbroken upon the stone, there was 
light, and worship, and watching, and 
energy within the tomb. Within that 
closed sepulchre there was a Divine 
power, the presence of the Son of God, 
who, having laid down His life, was 
preparing to take it up again. The 
Divine creating power which had fash 
ioned His own humanity, restored it 



150 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF THE 

again from the wounds and dishonors of 
His Passion. The Divine will smoothed 
out the furrows of the scourge, healed 
the piercing of the thorns, closed the 
wounds of the nails, and effaced from 
His Sacred Flesh all tokens of hu 
miliation, save only the five Sacred 
Wounds in hands, and feet, and side, 
which still remain, and in eternity will 
remain for ever, as the tokens of our 
redemption and the pledges of His ev 
erlasting love. When that Sacred Flesh 
was once more restored to its perfection 
and glory, the Divine soul of Jesus 
clothed itself therewith as with a gar 
ment. 

As in the moment of the Incarnation 
He arrayed Himself in our humanity, 
so once more, in the tomb, He took up 
again that Sacred Body, reanimated it, 
quickened it again in every pulse, and 



DIVINE HEAD OF THE CHURCH. 151 

in every vibration of human life. He 
raised it to a state of immortality ; He 
elevated it above the conditions of na 
ture. He passed out of that tomb be 
fore the stone was rolled from its mouth, 
before the seals were broken. By His 
Divine Omnipotence He passed forth, 
because that which was mortal had be 
come immortal ; that which had been 
passible was now impassible ; that which 
was before as our nature in the state of 
death, had become glorious, subtle, and 
Divine. He endowed His Body with 
the four gifts of glory which He has 
promised to us all. That which shall 
be the inheritance of all His members, 
He first assumed to Himself. 

Such, then, was the resurrection of 
Jesus Christ. He had laid down His 
life, and He took it up again, fulfilling 
His promise, "I am the Resurrection, I 



152 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF THE 

am the Life." In Him all men shall rise. 
" As in Adam all die, even so in Christ 
shall all be made alive. The first man 
is of the earth, earthly ; the second 
man from heaven, heavenly. As is the 
earthly, so are the earthly ; as is the 
heavenly, so are the heavenly." 

In His Eesurrection we all partake. 
" Christ is risen from the dead, the first 
fruits of them that sleep."* All who live 
by Him, and by vital union are united 
with Him, rise together with Him ; and 

x C / 

therefore the Apostle says : " If you be 
risen with Christ, seek the things that 
are above ; where Christ is sitting at the 
right hand of God. Mind the things 
that are above, not the things that are 
on the earth; for you are dead, and 
your life is hidden with Christ in God."f 
And again he says, that God has raised 
Him up, " and hath raised us up togeth- 

* 1 Cor. xv. 20. f Col. iii. 1-3. 



DIVINE HEAD OF THE CHURCH. 153 

er, and hath made us sit together in 
the heavenly places." * 

The power of the resurrection of 
Jesus is upon every member of His 
Body : it is upon every one of you. In 
your baptism you were grafted into 
Christ ; and if you be living members 
of His Body, the life of the Resurrec 
tion flowed into you : " Know you not 
that you are the temple of God, and 
that the Spirit of God dwelleth in 
you ? " f If any man have not the 
Spirit of Christ in him, he is none of 
His ; but if He be in you, then being 
buried by baptism to death, you will 
also rise up with Him, by the power of 
Him who raised Jesus from the dead. 

The plain consequence of this teach 
ing is full of joy and of consolation. 

First, it pledges to every one of us a 

* Ephes. ii. 6. f 1 Cor. iii. 16. 



154 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF THE 

resurrection hereafter to perfection and 
glory, the same as that of Jesus Himself, 
identical in all its circumstances. We 
are conquerors in Him, by Him, with 
Him, and through Him, over sin and 
death. If sin have no power over our 
will, death will have no power over our 
body or our soul, for we are made par 
takers of the first resurrection ; and 
" Blessed and holy is he that hath part 
in the first resurrection; in these the 
second death hath no power." * That 
is, if the resurrection of your baptism, 
and the indwelling of the Holy Ghost, 
and the risen life of Jesus Christ in 
your mortal body, be the law, and the 
rule, and the power which sustains you, 
then the death of the body is but a 
resting, a momentary passing sleep. 
Jesus has plucked out the sting of 

* Apoc. xx. 6. 



DIVINE HEAD OF THE CHURCH. 155 

death ; for the sting of death is sin, and 
He has thereby turned death into slum 
ber. Therefore Christians call their 
burial-places " cemeteries," sleeping- 
places, places of rest, of sweet, kindly, 
refreshing repose, after the toil of life 
is done. Therefore the living memo 
ries of those whom the world calls dead, 
and the Church knows to be alive, are 
ever fresh and vivid in the hearts of 
Christians. Therefore also the Com 
munion of Saints which the dull- 
hearted, cold-hearted world, with its 
clogged understanding, cannot compre 
hend is to those who live by faith a 
family, a household, an eternal home, 
on the very threshold of which our feet 
now stand. There is a resurrection 
pledged to us all, and with that resur 
rection the .perfect personal identity 
which we bear in this life. We shall 



. 



156 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF THE 

be the same men, having the same 
minds, hearts, wills, only with this 
change, that whereas here we are im 
perfect, there we shall be in perfection ; 
whereas here, if the image of God be 
impressed upon us as indeed it is 
it is dim and faint, there we shall be as 
he has promised : " The just shall shine 
as the sun, in the kingdom of their 
Father." * But we shall be the same 
men still. The very same that have 
suffered, sorrowed, struggled, labored, 
hungered, and thirsted in this life, the 
same we shall be in the kingdom of the 
resurrection. And therefore there shall 
be a perfect and universal recognition 
one of another, and of all those bonds 
whereby we are united here. Jesus 
and Mary, the Mother and the Son, will 
be Mother and son to all eternity : 

* St. Matt. xiii. 43. 



DIVINE HEAD OF THE CHURCH. 157 

maternal and filial love will be glorified 
in the kingdom of heaven. Mary and 
Lazarus will be likewise brother and 
sister; Andrew and Peter, and James 
and John, in like manner will be bound 
together in eternal kindred : fraternal 
love and friendship shall then be glori 
fied. So shall it be with all of you in 
the kingdom of God, in perfect personal 
identity, and perfect mutual recognition 
in that eternal home, in the everlasting 
bliss of our Father s house. 

Such, then, is the personal sover 
eignty of Jesus Christ, manifested in 
Himself, and in His victory over death 
and the grave ; and this sovereignty of 
life and immortality pervades His whole 
mystical Body now, and quickens every 
member of it. This is the meaning of 
St. John s words : " Grace be unto you 
and peace from Him, who is, and who 



158 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF THE 

was, and who is to come; and from 
the seven spirits which are before His 
throne : and from Jesus Christ, who is 
the Faithful Witness, the First Begot 
ten of the dead and the Prince of the 
kings of the earth ; who hath loved us, 
and washed us from our sins in His 
own blood, and hath made us a king 
dom, and priests to God and His Fath 
er: and to Him be glory and empire 
for ever and ever, Arnen." * The Church 
on earth is the kingdom of the resur 
rection, and the sovereignty of its Di 
vine Head is exercised through it, as 
the instrument of His power, and the 
manifestation of His government over 
the nations. This power He delegated 
in chief to His Vicar upon earth : the 
witness of the Divine Head of the 
mystical Body. 

* Apoc. i. 4-6. 



DIVINE HEAD OF THE CHURCH. 159 

We have already traced this sover 
eignty over the intellect and the will 
of man. We have traced it also over 
the civil society of the world, through 
that which is both the type and bond 
of all societies His Church. For this 
end, He has provided His Church with 
a supreme authority residing in its visi 
ble head, and with supernatural endow 
ments, derived from Himself. On these 
two points it may be well a little longer 
to delay ; but at this time we can only 
touch the former. The presence of a 
supreme authority, delegated by Jesus 
Christ to His Vicar, has been ever ac 
knowledged by the world by a twofold 
recognition. It recognizes it both by 
submission and by antagonism. 

And here I would fain make an end, 
but for other thoughts that are forced 
upon me. Yesterday I read a notable 



160 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF THE 

example of this homage of antagonism 
a scornful, petulant attack upon those 
devoted sons of the Catholic Church in 
England, who during this Holy Week 
have knelt at the feet of the Vicar of 
Jesus Christ, testifying, in the name of 
us all, our fidelity and love to him and 
to the Master whom he represents. 
The writer of the article stated he did 
not wonder and perhaps those who 
receive the teaching of such a writer 
may, like him, not wonder if in the 
heart of some devout Catholics there 
may rise a doubt whether the temporal 
power of the Pope will ever again be 
restored, and if not restored, whether 
the spiritual power of the Pope will 
long survive. In the name of the Cath 
olics of England, in whose name I have 
a right to speak, and in the name of 
Ireland, for whom I have no right but 



DIVINE HEAD OF THE CHURCH. 161 

that Ireland gives it me, and will not 
refuse my words, I protest against the 
folly and falsehood of this senseless in 
sinuation. There is no living Catholic 
in Great Britain or Ireland who for 
one moment doubts that the power in 
worldly things, with which our Divine 
Master has invested His Vicar on earth, 
will continue undimimshed until the 
hour in which it shall have fulfilled its 
mission; and then, in the wreck of 
kingdoms and the desolation of the 
world, it will be rendered back to Him 
who gave it. 

In the name, then, of every Catholic 
in these islands, I bear witness that he 
who thinks any Catholic child to im 
agine that the temporal power over 
temporal things is the basis of strength 
of the spiritual prerogatives of the 
Vicar of Jesus Christ, or that those 
11 



162 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF THE 

things are other than dust under his 
feet, that man, if he be not senseless, 
must be malicious. It is either the in 
capacity of the mind to understand, or 
the insincerity of the will that refuses 
to understand. 

It may seem as if I have introduced 
a note of discord, and struck upon this 
day a sound out of harmony with the 
resurrection of Jesus Christ. Not so. 
He who rose from the dead, and said : 
" I am alive, and was dead ; and behold, 
I am living for ever and ever, and have 
the keys of death and of hell," * is the 
same who said : " Thou art Peter, and 
upon this rock I will build My Church, 
and the gates of. hell " the keys of 
which I hold (i shall not prevail 
against it." It is tLe power of the 
resurrection of Jesus Christ which 

* Apoc. i. 18. 



DIVINE HEAD OF THE CHURCH. 163 

quickens the Church of God. As the 
Head is Divine, and as the Head is the 
"Resurrection and the Life," so is the 
Body imperishable, and its authority 
indefectible and infallible. The univer 
sality, sanctity, structure, and unity of 
that one Body of Christ is indissoluble 
and imperishable. It cannot die ; and 
that because its Head is the " Resurrec 
tion and the Life." Not only so, but it 
can never be bound. Jesus was bound 
with grave-clothes and laid in the grave, 
the stone upon the mouth of it was 
sealed, and guards set to watch it. The 
world would have hindered Him from 



rising. 



Turn now to the history of the Church. 
When has king, or prince, or people, or 
revolution, ever prevailed to bind the 
living Church of God? At this mo 
ment, the Church of God is more wide- 



164 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF THE 

spread, is more rooted in the hearts of 
mankind, is more abundantly multiplied 
beyond all example in its Apostolic 
power. Its Episcopate reaches beyond 
all bounds and limits of its former ex 
tent: its authority is so universally ac 
knowledged by the loving hearts of its 
pastors and people, that greater unity 
and power has never yet been seen in 
the history of Christendom. Princes 
and legislatures, penal laws, laws of 
prohibition, imperial despotisms, royal 
corruption, sanguinary revolutions, have 
done their worst to bind the liberty of 
the Church of God; but the bonds 
have been broken, as the threads and 
the withes were broken by the hands 
of the " Deliverer of Israel." So it has 
been, and so it shall be. Let no man 
believe, then, that if the temporal cir 
cumstances of the Church be for a mo- 



DIVINE HEAD OF THE CHURCH. 165 

ment snatched from it, the Apostle will 
not go onward without wallet or staff, 
scrip or shoes, if need be. His work 
will be done : for it is God s work, and 
none can hinder it. 

But there is another lesson these 
censors bring to mind, and for your 
sakes I must speak of it. In the same 
senseless and clamorous article I read 
these words : " The government of the 
Pope must go, because it is opposed to 
progress and modern civilization." 

For the present, it is enough to say 
that w progress" and "modern civiliza 
tion mean this: the world going its 
own way without God and without 
Christ ; excluding Christianity from 
legislation ; excluding religion from the 
education of children ; dissolving the 
bonds of marriage ; repealing the ta 
bles of sanctity and purity, whereby 



166 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF THE 

the marriage law has been protected ; 
proclaiming that the public life of na 
tions has no religion. This is " prog 
ress/ this is "modern civilization/* I 
acknowledge. Nations may grow culti 
vated and rich, scientific and prosper 
ous; they may devote all their ener 
gies to this world ; but they cannot 
serve God and mammon ; and for that 
reason they serve mammon mightily, 
and they serve God never. Verily 
they have their reward: they prosper 
in this life, and that prosperity is all 
the recompense before them. Such, 
indeed, is " modern civilization >! and 
" progress." And then they invite the 
Vicar of Jesus Christ, the representa 
tive of the Good Shepherd, the witness 
of truth upon earth, the teacher of the 
doctrines of Redemption, the expositor 
of the law of God, the guardian of the 



DIVINE HEAD OF THE CHURCH.. 167 

Seven Sacraments, the supreme judge 
of the law of domestic life, the chief 
father and pastor of the little ones of 
the flock, they invite him to conform 
himself to " progress : and " modern 
civilization," under the pain of losing 
his temporal power. Be it destroyed 
seventy times seven, before a compro 
mise of truth be made ! No Pontiff 
who has ever reigned in the chair of 
Peter, no head of the Catholic Church 
who represents the Incarnate Son of 
God, ever did, or can, or ever will com 
promise, for all the world contains, jot 
or tittle of the faith or law of Christ. 

Here I would fain conclude ; but 
I must press this " progress and 
" modern civilization a little farther. 
Let me trace it to its fountain ; and 
that I may not detain you too long, I 
will only go a century back to show 



168 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF THE 

what it has produced. In the last cen 
tury, a new code of legislation was pro 
mulgated to the civilized and Christian 
world, called " The Principles of 1789." 
Those principles were laid down as the 
basis of the civil order of France : and 
not only so; they were intended to 
make France the apostle of civilization 
and progress throughout the Christian 
world. The example of perfection, and 
the cajpital of the modern world in its 
civilization and progress, was to be 
Paris. I need hardly say more. In 
eighty-two years there have been five 
revolutions in that city, all of them 
with bloodshed. No doubt you have 
all.read of the blood which flowed dur 
ing the First Eevolution, as the first 
libation of those principles. I am old 
enough to remember the blood shed in 
Paris in the years 1830, 1848, and 



DIVINE HEAD OF THE CHURCH. 169 

1852. And how do you think Palm 
Sunday was kept this year in the cen 
tre of " modern civilization " ? By the 
inauguration of a civil war. How has 
this Holy Week been sanctified? By 
daily battles of brother against brother. 
And Good Friday ? By a fiercer en 
counter, by the seizure- of the Arch 
bishop and pastors of the flock, by the 
closing of the churches, by the spoiling 
of sanctuaries, by the prohibition of 
religion. The last tidings we heard 
were, that it was expected a decisive 
assault would be made last night, that 
is on Easter-eve. Verily, this is the 
Easter of progress ! To-day is Easter- 
day ; and who knows but that, the mo 
ment I speak, blood may not be run 
ning in the paths of that city ? If this 
be " progress," and if this be " modern 
civilization," may God in His infinite 



170 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF THE 

mercy keep it for ever from the shores 
of this country ! 

The first great French Revolution 
was the inauguration of the reign of 
Antichrist, of the denial of Christian 
faith, of the ruin of the Christian order, 
of the subversion of the authority of 
the Church of God, both in public and 
private life ; and from that day to this, 
the principles of turbulence and apos 
tasy have scourged and tormented 
kingdoms. "Xt that time they all but 
entered England ; at this time they 
may strive to enter again. Be firm, 
and fear not the clamorous talk of those 
who write to pander to the public opin 
ion of the day. We know that He in 
whom we believe is the " Resurrection 
and the Life," the Head of His Church 
on earth, the sovereignty of which shall 
never fail. Whether the Church be 



DIVINE HEAD OF THE CHURCH. Ill 

clothed with temporal power or not, so 
long as the world is Christian, the world 
will believe in Jesus Christ and in His 
Vicar. So long as it believes He has a 
Vicar upon earth, no king, prince, or 
sovereign whatsoever will venture to 
claim him as a subject. Even at this 
moment, the unjust and sacrilegious 
revolution of Italy has not dared to 
call him subject, but has, with pretences 
and guarantees, which are mere illu 
sion, attempted to throw dust in the 
eyes of the Christian world, and de 
ceive those who cannot be deceived. 
So long as the world is Christian, the 
Chief Pastor of the Christian world 
will remain as he is subject to no hu 
man authority. For what is temporal 
power? It is not the possession of a. 
bit of land or of a city ; it is the inde 
pendence of all power on earth ; being 



172 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF THE 

the delegation of Him who said : " All 
power on earth is given to me ; go ye, 
therefore, and teach all nations." 

There may, indeed, be another alter 
native ; and I acknowledge, looking to 
the stream of events, the time may 
come when the nations, governments, 
and legislatures may cease to believe 
that Jesus Christ has a Church upon 
earth ; and in the day when they cease 
so to believe (and I am bound to say, 
their acts lead us to think they are not 
far off from that state of unbelief), then 
the world will not be Christian, and 
then 1 acknowledge that the Vicar of 
Jesus Christ will have no temporal 
power over the world that has rejected 
his Master. Though I am no prophet, 
and no expositor of prophecy, and 
know nothing of what is to corne, save 
only as the Catholic Church and faith 



DIVINE HEAD OF THE CHURCH. 173 

guide me, of this I am sure, from the 
lips of Jesus Christ ; that in those days 
which we call the latter times, " king 
dom shall rise against kingdom, and 
nation against nation, and brother be- 
trav brother to death ; " and the world 

V 

shall be in misery it never knew before. 
When these things shall come to pass, 
the tyranny of the world will be well 
nigh over, and the despotism of men 
will no more sway the Church of God ; 
revolutions will no more persecute, be 
cause there is One at the door who 
must reign until He puts all enemies 
under His feet; and when that time 
shall come, will come also the " resur 
rection of the just." 



174 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF THE CHURCH 



LECTURE V. 

THE SOVEREIGNTY OF THE CHURCH DE 
RIVED FROM ITS DIVINE PIEAD. 



"Because thou hast seen Me, Thomas, thou 
hast believed: blessed are they that have not 
seen, and have believed" St. John xx. 29. 

ON the night of the first day of the 
week, when our Lord rose from the 
dead, He came, the doors being shut, 
and appeared suddenly in the midst 
of his disciples. Thomas was not with 
them; either through fear or from 
doubt, or from human infirmity, he had 
parted from the Apostles. He lost, 
therefore, the manifestation of our Di- 



DERIVED FROM ITS DIVINE HEAD. 175 

vine Master, when He came to assure 
His Apostles of His resurrection from 
the dead. He lost, also, the communi 
cation of the royalties of the kingdom 
of God, which Jesus conveyed to His 
disciples in the words, " As My Father 
hath sent Me, even so send I you." 
He lost, also, his share in the power of 
the keys, and in the gift of the Holy 
Ghost, which was conferred when our 
Lord breathed upon His Apostles, and 
said, "Keceive ye the Holy Ghost; and 
whosesoever sins ye shall retain, they 
are retained." Such was the loss in- 
curged by Thomas through his transient 
unbelief. 

He also exposed himself to two great 
dangers : to the blindness of incredulity, 
and to the sin of obstinacy. For when 
the disciples told him : " We have seen 
the Lord," he answered : " Unless I put 



176 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF THE CHURCH 

my finger into the print of the nails, 
and thrust my hands into His side, I 
will not believe." He had the presump 
tion to prescribe the kind and degree 
of evidence upon which alone he would 
believe. Nevertheless, such is the ten 
derness and condescension of our Divine 
Lord, that, on the first day of the fol 
lowing week, and again at night, when 
the Apostles were gathered together, 
and Thomas with them, He came once 
more. The air seemed to give up His 
bodily presence. At once, by Divine 
intuition, and before a word w r as spoken, 
fixing His eves on Thomas, He said : 

o */ * 

" Put forth thou thy finger : put it into 
the print of the nails, and thrust thy 
hand into My side ; and be not incred 
ulous, but faithful." And Thomas an 
swered : " My Lord and My God." And 
Jesus answered him : " Because thou 



DERIVED FROM ITS DIVINE HEAD. 177 

hast seen Me, Thomas, thou hast be 
lieved : blessed are they that have not 
seen, and have believed;" a benedic 
tion shall be on thee; but a greater 
benediction shall be on them who, with 
docility and generosity of faith, shall 
hereafter, without seeing, believe in 
Me. 

This benediction has descended upon 
us, and upon all who to the end shall 
believe in the resurrection of our Lord 
Jesus Christ. I have already spoken 
of the mystery and of the effects of the 
resurrection of our Divine Saviour, of 
the reassuDiption of His deified human 
ity, which is the pledge and productive 
principle that is, the cause of our 
rising again to immortality of life. Thus 
far I have spoken of the rising of His 
natural body, which is now at the right 
hand of God, in the proper stature and 
12 



178 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF THE CHURCH 

dimensions of His person. I will now 
take up again another part of the sub 
ject, on which I then touched only in 
passing I .mean, the power of the 
resurrection of Jesus Christ now, in 
this world, and in this mortal state, in 
His mystical Body, which is the Church. 
My object will be to show that the 
power of the resurrection, " The powers 
of the world to come," as St. Paul writes 
to the Hebrews,* are at this moment 
present and in action in the mystical 
Body of Christ; that is, in the visible 
Church on earth. 

Saint Augustine, answering the cavils 
and pretensions of the Donatists in 
Africa, who, separating themselves from 
the unity of the Universal Church, 
claimed to be the Catholic Church, 
argued as follows : " The Body of Christ 

* Hebrews vi. 5. 



DERIVED FROM ITS DIVINE HEAD. 179 

is spread throughout all nations : you 
are shut up and confined in Africa. 
The true Body of Christ is universal ; 
we see the Body, and we believe in the 
Head. The Body and the Head are 
one, united in one mystical Person. 
The Apostles saw the Head ; but they 
did not see the Body, which was after 
wards to be revealed. Seeing the Head, 
they believed in the future, that is, 
in the universality of the Body, which 
should one day be spread throughout 
the world. They then saw the Divine 
Head, they believed in the universality 
of the Church which should be. We 
now see the universality of the Church, 
and believe in the Divine Head en 
throned in heaven." 

As the Head and the Body make up 
one mystical Person, so the prerogatives 
and properties of that Head are com- 



180 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF THE CHURCH 

municated to the Body. As in the one 
person of Jesus Christ the prerogatives 
and perfections of the Godhead were 
communicated to the manhood, and as 
the sufferings and the passion of the 
manhood were attributed also to the 
Godhead, by an interchange of their 
properties between the two natures, so 
is it with the Head and with the Body 
of the Church. 

1. Our Divine Lord declared that He 
is the Resurrection ; and because He is 
the Resurrection, His Body upon earth 
has in it the principle of immortality. 
Though temporal death, that is, the 
separation of body and soul, must pass 
upon all the members of the Church, 
there is in the mystical Body of Christ 
the principle of the resurrection and 
of immortality. The sentence of death 
includes not only the separation of the 



DERIVED FROM ITS DIVINE HEAD. 181 

soul from the body, font also the eternal 
separation of the body and the soul from 
God. But this can never take place in 
the Body of Christ. All the individual 
members of the mystical Body of Christ 
upon earth will pay the penalty of 
temporal death ; they will die, and be 
buried in the earth. Multitudes of these 
members will die also spiritually., and 
will never see eternal life, because they 
will have been separated from God in 
this w r orld by apostasy or by mortal sin. 
They who have been in the unity of 
the Church, but have apostatized from 
it, are cut off from God ; they who, 
whether they be in the Church or not, 
commit mortal sin, are thereby sepa 
rated from God, and, if they so die, will 
be separated eternally. Nevertheless, 
there always has been, and always will 
be, in the one Church of God, which is 



182 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF THE CHURCH 

the Body of Christ, a line, a chain, a 
fellowship of those who believe and are 
united vitally and by the Holy Ghost 
to their Divine Head in heaven. In 
them, therefore, life and immortality and 
the pledge of the resurrection always 
abide. This is what is called the inde- 
fectibility of the Church, or in the words 
of the promise of our Divine Lord, "The 
gates of hell shall not prevail against 
it " it shall never succumb to the pow 
ers of sin and death. As the Apostle 
Paul writes : " There is now no condem 
nation to them who are in Christ Jesus, 
who walk not according to the flesh. 
For the law of the Spirit of life, in 
Christ Jesus, hath delivered me from the 
law of sin and of death." * Therefore 
the Church of God is indefectible. It 
partakes of the property of its Head ; 

* Rom. viii. 1, 2. 



DERIVED FROM ITS DIVINE HEAD. 183 

it has an imperishable life, and the 
pledge of immortality. 

2. Secondly, because the Head of 
the Church is Holy, the Body is holy. 
Now, the Head of the Church is the 
Son of God, and therefore He has the 
uncreated sanctity of God. In His In 
carnation He was anointed with the 
Holy Ghost, that is, with the fulness of 
sanctifying grace ; and he is the Head 
or Fountain from whom sanctity de 
scends upon all His members. As the 
unction on the head of the high-priest 
descended to the hem of his garment, 
so does the sanctity of the Son of God 
descend through all the members of 
His Body ; that is to say, we are made 
the members of His Body by regener 
ation, through the Sacrament of Bap 
tism, by water and the Holy Ghost ; 
we are sanctified in living union with 



184 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF THE CHURCH 

Him by the holy Sacraments and the 
indwelling of the Spirit of Grace. 

There is, then, a sanctity pervading 
the whole Church ; and yet how much 
of sin attaches to it; how many sin 
ners are within its unity. Our Lord has 
told us to expect both good fish and bad 
in the one net, and both tares and wheat 
in the one field. Such is the mixture 
of good and evil in the visible Church. 
Some are scandalized at it, not knowing 
the Scriptures, nor believing the Word 
of God. They think to form to them 
selves a Church which shall be pure 
before the last day, and now in this 
mortal state cleansed from every stain; a 
thing contrary to the word of prophecy 
and the parables of our Divine Lord. 
The mixture of good and evil is per 
mitted in the turbulent sea of this world ; 
but they shall be separated on the 



DERIVED FROM ITS DIVINE HEAD. 185 

eternal shore. But though there be an 
evil mixture in the visible Church of 
Christ bad Christians, bad Catholics, 
men whose lives are a scandal and a 
shame nevertheless, the sanctity of 
the Church is never tainted. 

The Body of Christ is the dwelling- 
place of the Holy Ghost, the Sanctifier. 
It is the Body of a Divine Head ; and 
in that Body are the Sacraments, or 
channels of sanctity, immutable and un- 
defiled. In that Body are the works of 
the Holy Ghost, the fruits of sanctity ; 
and they are, first, innocent souls who 
have preserved their baptismal grace, 
and have grown up from the waters of 
baptism as the willows by the water 
courses, straight and vigorous ; or pen 
itent souls, once broken like the bruised 
reed, raised up again by penance, and 
restored to the life of God. These are 



186 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF THE CHURCH 

the twofold operations of the Holy 
Ghost working through the Church. St. 
John is the type of the one, St. Mary 
Magdalen of the other ; and this super 
natural grace is verified throughout all 
ages in the unity of the Church ; and 
the sanctity of the Church manifests 
itself perpetually in the innocent and 
the penitent, who are the fruits of sanc- 
titv. 

iX 

3. And further: when Pilate asked 
our Divine Lord, " What is truth ? : 
He answered not a word ; but when 
He taught His disciples, He said, " I am 
the Truth ; " that is, The Truth it 
is I." For God is Truth, and Jesus is 
God. The truth is revealed in Jesus 
Christ ; and to know Him, His mind, 
and His will, is to know the truth of 
God. The revelation of Christianity is 
the knowledge of God in Jesus Christ. 



DERIVED FROM ITS DIVINE HEAD. 187 

To know the mind of Jesus Christ is 
to know the doctrines of the faith To 
know the will of Jesus Christ is to know 
His laws and His Church. Dogma is 
the clear, definite, mental perception, 
and the precise, logical, scientific ex 
pression in words, of those eternal, im 
mutable, and Divine truths which are 
revealed to us. For people to say, "I 
believe in truth, but I do not believe in 
dogma," is like saying, "I believe in 
substances, but only when they are with 
out shadows." Every substance casts 
its shadow, and every truth leaves its 
definite impression upon the reason of 
man ; and the enunciation of that defi 
nite impression is dogma. 

If the men of the nineteenth century 
would be a little more consecutive 
or, if that is asking too much, a little 
more patient they would not be 



188 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF THE CHURCH 

scared by the word " dogma." The 
Church of Jesus Christ possesses the 
truth ; it possesses His mind, it knows 
it always, it enunciates it clearly, and 
can never err in its enunciation. It is 
in possession of His revelation ; and it 
applies that revelation, as the test of 
truth, to the opinions, the teachings, and 
the errors of men. As the leprosy dis 
appeared from the body of Naaman, 
and as the scales fell from the eyes of 
the blind, so, when the truth of the rev 
elation is brought in contact with error, 
straightway error is detected, and is 
healed. 

In the Church no error has ever 
established itself. In these eighteen 
hundred years, during which the rest 
less activity of the human intellect has 
been perpetually devising for itself new 
modes of conception and of expression 



DERIVED FROM ITS DIVINE HEAD. 189 

thereby perpetually either going 
beyond the truth or falling short of it, 
thus producing heresies never yet in 
the Catholic Church has a heresy been 
able to establish itself or to effect a 
lodgment. Always and invariably has 
it been expelled. As a morbid humor 
of the body is expelled by the vigor 
of life, so everything contrary to the 
perfect life of the body and the perfect 
purity of truth has been sooner or later 
cast out so completely eliminated, 
that not a taint remains behind. The 
Church is in all ages what it was in the 
beginning the witness, judge, and 
teacher of the whole revelation of God. 
It bears witness to the truth it has 
received. It is the judge, applying that 
revelation as a test to the teachings of 
men, condemning the errors, and accept 
ing what is true. It is the teacher, not 



190 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF THE CHURCH 

as scribes and Pharisees, by quotations 
and criticisms and contradictions among 
themselves ; but by the voice of author 
ity as one having power. As it is 
written of our Divine Master, " the peo 
ple heard Him gladly ; and for this 
reason, that " He taught as one having 
power that is, authority and not 
as the scribes." And what is this but 
that which men rail at, the infallibility 
of the Church ? That is, the Church 
does not err. Individuals may err, as 
individuals may die ; but the Church 
cannot err, as the Church cannot die. 
Why does not the Church err? Be 
cause it is the Body of a Divine Head ; 
and that Divine Head is Truth. It is 
the dwelling-place of the Spirit of Truth, 
who, inhabiting the Body, always sus 
tains it in the knowledge and enuncia 
tion of truth. 



DERIVED FROM ITS DIVINE HEAD. 191 

4. Again for I do not purpose to 
enter into this argument in detail ; I 
am merely touching on points of it for 
a purpose that will hereafter appear 
there is another property of our Divine 
Lord, which is also communicated to 
His Body. Christ is One. The God 
head and the manhood are united in 
the Unity of the One Person of the 
Eternal Son, and the Godhead and the 
manhood are indissolubly united for all 
eternity. Christ cannot be divided ; 
and as the Head is indivisible, so is the 
Body ; and the Unity of the Body ex 
cludes the possibility of division. Frag 
mentary portions may be broken off 
from it, as fragments and boulders may 
roll from a mountain side, but the moun 
tain remains immovable and indivisible 
in its perfect identity. So is it with the 
Universal Church. Its unity both with 
in and without cannot be dissolved. 



192 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF THE CHURCH 

Of the external unity of the Church, 
some people speak as if they thought 
it were a constitution, or the result of 
legislation. The outward and visible 
unity of the Church is the result of its 
inward unity, which is invisible; and 
no external unity could exist, or, if 
it, for a time, could be put together, 
would endure, unless it spring from 
an internal unity, which in itself is im 
perishable. For what is the cause of 
the visible and outward unity of the 
Catholic Church ? The unity of faith, 
the unity of doctrine, the unity of in 
tellect, the fusion, I may say, of the 
lights of the supernatural illumination, 
as the sun s rays mingle altogether in 
the splendor of the noonday light. So 
all the intelligences of the Church, 
throughout its whole expanse, and 
throughout all its eighteen hundred 



DERIVED FROM ITS DIVINE HEAD. 193 

years of duration, are all united and 
concentrated in the belief of one truth, 
and of one faith, which comes from a 
Divine voice. And because the intel 
lects of men are thus indissolubly one, 
therefore their hearts are one : having 
one truth, they have one charity ; and 
their hearts being one, they have one 
will ; and therefore in the unity of the 
Church of God, there is an internal 
unity so vital and creative, that it im 
presses itself upon its external struc 
ture. Thus the visible unity is the 
outward expression of that internal 
unity from which it springs. But from 
,what source is this unity derived? It 
comes from the Person of its Head. 
He is the one and only source of 
all truth ; the one and only source of 
all jurisdiction and of authority; and 
that jurisdiction and authority spreads 
13 



194 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF THE CHTJKCH 

itself throughout the whole circle of 
His Universal Church, from the sunrise 
to the sunset. From this it follows as 
a direct consequence, that as Christ is 
not divided, so neither is His Church 
divided. There can be divisions from 
it, but divisions in the Church of Christ 
or in any part of it are impossible. He 
Himself has said : " Every kingdom di 
vided against itself shall be made deso 
late : and every city or house divided 
against itself shall not stand;"* and 
this affirms that its unity is indivisible ; 
as St. Bede says, with a terse simplici 
ty: "The kingdom of God is not di 
vided, because the kingdom of God can 
never fall." 

5. There is one more point, to which 
all I have said directly leads. He has 
delegated to His Church a share of His 

* St. Matt. xii. 25. 



DERIVED FROM ITS DIVINE HEAD. 195 

sovereignty ; and the supernatural prop 
erties which He has communicated to 
His Body constitute that sovereignty. 
He said to His Apostles : " You who 
have followed Me, in the regeneration, 
when the Son of Man shall sit on the 
seat of His majesty, you also shall sit 
on twelve seats, judging the twelve 
tribes of Israel." * 

This does not mean only in the heav 
enly state hereafter. The regeneration 
is now in the world. It has been from 
the time our Lord said : " Go, and bap 
tize all nations." Then was begun the 
regeneration of mankind. The Son of 
God now sits on the throne of His 
glory, and the Apostles sit upon their 
thrones on earth. Peter still sits up 
on the chief throne of the Universal 
Church. This prophecy and promise 

* St, Matt. xix. 28. 



196 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF THE CHUKCH 

are fulfilled at this day upon earth, in 
the rnidst of us. We are a part of its 
fulfilment; for the twelve tribes of Is* 
rael are the mystical tribes of the faith 
ful throughout the whole world, the 
true seed promised to Abraham. 

Again, our Lord said : " I appoint to 
you, as My Father hath appointed to 
Me, a kingdom ; " * and in the Apoca 
lypse : " The kingdom of this world is 
become our Lord s and His Christ s." f 
That is to say, there is a delegated sov 
ereignty upon earth, derived from the 
Son of God, representing His person, 
and invested with His prerogatives of 
immortality, sanctity, infallibility, unity, 
and, therefore, of Divine authority. 
Sovereignty is the supremacy of these 
supernatural endowments over the 
whole natural course and order of this 

* St. Luke xxii. 29. f Apoc. xi. 15. 



DERIVED FROM ITS DIVINE HEAD. 197 

world. And the sphere of this sover 
eignty is the Church, by which Christ 



reigns among men. 



The sovereignty, then, of our Lord 
Jesus Christ, sitting at the right hand 
of God, to whom " all power in heaven 
and on earth 1 is given, consists not 
only in His sovereignty over individual 
souls. He has, indeed, a sovereignty 
over the intellect by faith, and over 
the heart by love, and over the will by 
obedience ; but it is a sovereignty which 
extends itself to families and to house 
holds : it guides the authority of par 
ents, it directs the obedience of chil 
dren, it unites the charity of brethren. 
Christian households have our Divine 
Lord as their head ; and not only house 
holds, but peoples: for what are they 
but the aggregate of families? they 
make states, they therefore constitute 



198 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF THE CHURCH 

governments. Governments make laws, 
and they execute laws. And who is 
the Head and Fountain of their power ? 
From whom is derived the authority 
and direction for the civil government 
over mankind ? From Him who is the 
Lord and Eedeemer of men, who is also 
the Head even of the natural order, or, 
as we call it, of political society. He is 
the supreme ruler and chief; and by 
Him kings reign, and princes decree 
judgment. 

The Son of God is the Head of all 
power in heaven and in earth, both of 
the spiritual and of the political or 
civil order of the world ; and when the 
sovereignty or kingship of Jesus Christ 
began to work throughout the nations 
of the world, what were its effects? 
First of all, as I have said before,* sla- 

* See Lect. iii. p. 95. 



DERIVED FROM ITS DIVINE HEAD. 199 

very was steadily extinguished. The 
greatest tyranny of man over man, the 
claim of man to hold man as a chattel, 
and to have possession in the flesh and 
blood of a fellow-creature, this greatest 
debasement of man by man, was ex 
tinguished by " the freedom wherewith 
Christ hath made us free." * Next : wo 
man was raised again to her true dig 
nity. Woman, who had been the toy, 
the tool, and the prey of man, was ele 
vated and made to be, conjointly with 
man, the head over the families and 
households of Christendom. Thirdly, 
wars, which before had been sanguinary 
and brutal beyond all conception or 
human imagination, were restrained by 
laws of mercy and by arbitrations of 
justice. Once more, the criminal 
code, whereby the life of man was 

* Gal. iv. 31. 



200 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF THE CHURCH 

taken, for the protection of society, 
was cruel and unrelenting, until, under 
the action of the sovereignty of Jesus 

o / 

Christ, and the legislation of the Church, 
was mitigated and tempered from age 
to age. Again, a quality, unknown be 
fore Christianity came on earth, save 
only in Israel, and that only in part 
unknown altogether in the heathen 
world was infused into the hearts of 
men ; that is charity a tenderness, 
and a human sympathy of man for 
man. It is a fact too well known to 
dwell upon, that in the whole world not 
a hospital was to be found. Even in 
its most advanced civilization, before 
Christianity the sick died without mer 
cy. Another effect of Christianity in 
the civil order of the world is mutual 
respect, the respect of inferiors for 
the superior, of the subject for 



DERIVED FROM ITS DIVINE HEAD. 201 

thority, the respect of authority for the 
subject, of the higher for the lower, of 
equal for equal, and of all men for 
those around and even below them ; 
because all alike bear the image of 
Jesus Christ ; because all alike were re 
deemed in the Blood of the same Sa 
viour; because all alike were the tem 
ples of the Holy Ghost; because they 
all alike received the same Precious 
Body and Blood of Jesus Christ at the 
Altar. The poor servant that did the 
bidding of a Christian master, it may 
be that morning had been to the Altar, 
and had been made a tabernacle of the 
Son of God. And this participation by 
all alike of the same Precious Body 
and Blood of Jesus Christ infused 
throughout society a mutual respect, 
which is the foundation of all justice 
and equity, charity and mercy. And 



202 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF THE CHURCH. 

from all these sprang up the common 
wealth of Christian men, not only of 
individuals, of households, but of na 
tions, states, and empires, which we call 
Christendom. From this Divine root 
was produced the civilization and prog 
ress of mankind ; which to be such 
must be Christian, and can be accom 
plished only by the Son of God, by His 
sovereignty alone. I can but touch, 
and that briefly, on a subject of which 
I spoke before, and broke off then as I 
needs must now. I can do nothing now 
but sketch the mere outline of certain 
great truths^ which nevertheless will, I 
hope, be of use in putting you on your 
guard against the silver sounds which 
are chimed and chanted in our ears 
every morning about civilization, prog 
ress, advancement, dignity, and I know 
not what ; as if the " Golden Age " 



DERIVED FROM ITS DIVINE HEAD. 203 

were before us, into which we are all 
advancing, because as I will show 
hereafter the world is rejecting the 
sovereignty of Jesus Christ. 

My purpose, then, in pointing out 
that the Church on earth partakes of 
the properties and prerogatives of its 
Divine Head, and, therefore, of His 
sovereignty, is to draw two plain con 
clusions. 

The first is this : That civilization can 
be perfect only when it is Christian ; 
that civilization, or the culture and 
ripening of the civil and political soci 
ety of man, is never perfect, and can 
never be perfect, unless elevated by 
union with the laws of Christianity 
under the sovereignty of the Son of 
God. 

The civil and domestic society of man 
in the order of nature existed before 



204: THE SOVEREIGNTY OF THE CHURCH 

Christianity came on earth. This also 
is God s work, and in this order there 
may be a natural civilization. Let any 
body, who desires to know what the 
civilization of man became before Chris 
tianity, read any work on the literature 
and the morals of Rome and Athens. 
And if you desire the name or title of 
a book on this subject, I will say read 
a book on The, Formation of Christianity, 
lately published among us ; or, if you 
w r ish something more detailed and ex 
tensive, read a work called The G-entile 
and the Jeiv, by a well-known professor 
of history in Germany. A rankness of 
abomination, intellectual and moral, is 
to be found in the pages of the latter 
book which no Christian heart could 
conceive. Such was civilization with 
out Christianity. 

When the supernatural society of 



DERIVED FROM ITS DIVINE HEAD. 205 

the Church descended upon the natural 
society of the world, the order of nature 
was elevated by regeneration, by bap 
tism, by grace, by faith, by light, and 
by guidance. Then there was a union 
between those two societies, natural and 
supernatural ; or, as men commonly say, 
66 Church and State." That is to say, 
they mutually recognized each other as 
creations of God in different spheres, 
mutually recognized each other s office, 
mutually recognized each other s func 
tions, and, being united together, they 
co-operated for the welfare of man under 
one and the same Head, one and the 
same Sovereign. When the civil order 
of the world acknowledged Jesus Christ 
as its true Head and Sovereign, then 
civilization was Christian, and then there 
was progress. Progress signifies an ad 
vance in the order of perfection, both 



206 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF THE CHURCH 

internal in states, and external with 
their neighbors. This includes intellec 
tual cultivation, knowledge, both scien 
tific and spiritual ; justice that is, just 
laws, and just administration of laws ; 
and lastly, the arts and the fruits of 
peace in industries of every kind of hu 
man skill and toil. This progress, I 
assert, was steadily advancing, so long 
as the world was Christian. This is 
our first conclusion. 

And the second is self-evident : That 
what is called modern civilization, is 
civilization without Christianity. I be 
lieve, indeed, that the men, at least 
many of them, who use the words do 
not know what they imply, and would 
reject it if they saw it. But civilization 
without the sovereignty of Jesus Christ, 
is the rejection of the Christian order 
under which the progress of the world 
has hitherto steadily advanced. 



DERIVED FROM ITS DIVINE HEAD. 207 

In order to make this as clear as I 
can, and in as few words, let me remind 
you that there are three causes which 
have broken up the Christian civiliza 
tion of Europe and of the world. 

In the fifteenth century, the study 
and cultivation of classical literature 
excited in the minds of the leading men 
of the European countries a sort of 
admiration, which I may call worship. 
The models of pagan antiquity, of its 
philosophy and its policy, of its patri 
ots, of its public morality that which 
is styled the Renaissance, or the new 
birth of the Christian world profound 
ly infected the men of that day. This 
anti-Christian reaction has spread down 
to the present time. People were de 
ceived into thinking that the Renais 
sance must be classical and refined, 
cultivated and civilized. This was the 



208 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF THE CHURCH 

first step, as I will show, to the rejection 
of Christian civilization. 

It introduced paganism into books, 
into literature, into art, into education. 
On the testimony of multitudes of men, 
in which I bear my own part, the edu 
cation of Christian nations has been 
based and formed upon what is called 
classical literature. The examples, max 
ims, principles, the deeds, the crimes, 
personal, private, and public, even to 
the assassination of princes and revolt 
of peoples, glorified in classical litera 
ture, have been taken in unconsciously 
by boys in their early education for 
these three hundred years. In Italy 
and France this is already bearing its 
fruit. 

Next came a period, of which I have 
no wish to speak controversially to 
night, but I must speak clearly ; calling 



DERIVED FROM ITS DIVINE HEAD. 209 



itself the Reformation. This was the 
second step towards the rejection of 
Christian civilization. 

The first work of this Eeformation 
was to shatter the unity of faith : to 
render impossible the unity of worship, 
to excite individuals to withdraw their 
obedience from the one Church of Jesus 
Christ, to make families and house 
holds withdraw their obedience from 
the truth; then states, peoples, and 
governments. Finally, governments set 
up, in the place of the one and undi 
vided religion, I know not how many 
forms of Christianty established by law. 
Into this I will not farther enter. The 
work of disintegration was begun ; the 
unity of faith and worship among the 
nations was shattered. Then national 
religions and their sub-divisions ren 
dered unity impossible. So far as the 
14 



210 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF THE CHURCH 



Reformation extended itself, it carried 
religious division throughout the Chris 
tian society of men. 

Thirdly. I have already spoken of 
what are called the principles. of 1789. 
I will not say more of them now, than 
to add that they are the legitimate 
application of the principles of the Ref 
ormation to states. They are Luther- 
anisrn in politics, and they have done 
for the civil order that which the Ref 
ormation did for the ecclesiastical. The 
Reformation broke up the religious 
unity, and the principles of 1789 broke 
up the political unity, of Christian Eu 
rope. From that day a perpetual disso 
lution, crumbling, and decay in the 
foundations of society has undermined 
every country where these principles 
have taken root. 

One main cause of it is this, that those 



DERIVED FROM ITS DIVINE HEAD. 211 

principles were not a development or 
a progressive expansion of the exist 
ing traditional institutions of Europe. 
They began with destruction, by cutting 
through the roots, by pulling down the 
tree. It was a work of ruin, and in 
place of Christian civilization were sub 
stituted principles that were directly 
subversive of it. 

Two plain conclusions follow from 
what has just been said. 

First. That the differentia of modern 
civilization is the exclusion from the 
political order of religious unity in faith, 
worship, and education; the separation 
of Church from State, and State from 
Church. It is the separation of the 
civil and political order of the world 
from Christianity, and from the sov 
ereignty of its Divine Head. 

The second conclusion is this; that 



212 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF THE CHURCH 

what is called progress, in this kind of 
civilization, is not progress, but regress ; 
it is not going onward, but backward. 
As the Renaissance of which I spoke 
was the return to the political state of 
the world before Christ, and because 
before Christ, necessarily without Christ, 
so the civilization which springs from it 
is a civilization which goes its own way 
without regard to the faith or the laws 
of Jesus Christ : that is to say, it is a 
return into the state of the world be 
fore Christ. I deny to this the name 
of Progress. It is a going backward, 
not onward. It is a relapse into the 
civilization of Paganism. 

Let us take an example of the day. 
We are hearing all day long of that which 
is called the Religious Difficulty: the 
poor children of our streets cannot be 
educated together and why? Because 



DERIVED FROM ITS DIVINE HEAD. 213 

of the religious difficulty. And legis 
lators meet, night after night, to debate 
the religious difficulty, and know not 
what to do for the education of the 
poor, because of the religious difficulty. 
What is the religious difficulty ? Where 
was the religious difficulty before the 
unity of the Faith was shattered ? What 
has caused the religious difficulty ? The 
shattering of the Faith, and the shatter 
ing of the Unity of the Church. But 
who did these things ? and what has re 
duced us to secular education without 
Christianity ? The religious difficulty, 

and they who made it. Tell me, is this 

$ 

progress ? I should as soon call the 
turning off from the straight sea-line 
homeward, into an ocean full of rocks 
and shoals, a homeward voyage. It is 
not progress, it is regress ; it is error, 
deviation, wandering: and the further 



214 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF THE CHURCH 

and faster men go in this direction, the 
further and faster they are leaving the 
sovereignty of Jesus Christ. 
<. We are told what great things mod 
ern civilization has done. It has abol 
ished penal laws. But who made them? 
I thank no man for abolishing penal 
laws against the Catholic Faith. I ac 
cuse those who enacted them, and set 
tip the tyranny and persecution under 
which the Faith has suffered. I accuse 
the forefathers of those who, happily 
for themselves, by the working of a 
higher and nobler spirit, have undone 
the deeds of their forefathers. I am 
not grateful, except for the kindly feel 
ing of those who may be moved in sym 
pathy to do it. But I recognize nothing 
noble in this. I recognize nothing in 
the man who has done me a wrong, and 
then retracts the wrong, but that he 



DERIVED FROM ITS DIVINE HEAD. 215 

has at last done that which was right. 
To be just is simple duty. To thank 
men for doing a duty implies a doubt 
of their integrity. 

I am told also, I know not what, of 
the advantages of progress, of electric 
telegraphs, railways, and the prohibition 
of intramural burial. Do men desire 
to make so grave a subject as this to be 
contemptible ? 

This, then, is the truth : The world 
under the constant action of Christian 
ity and the sovereignty of Divine law 
was advancing in civilization and mak 
ing true progress, until a blight fell 
upon it. The disorders and anarchies 
of three hundred years ago came to 
check and to overthrow the course of 
its advance. Christianity would have 
abolished all social evils with greater 
speed and certainty, if its onward course 



216 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF THE CHURCH 

had not been stayed. As for the ab 
olition of old tyrannies, it was this 
very departure from Christianity which 
caused them. There never could have 
been State Churches to be disestab 
lished, if dominant heresies and schisms 
had not first established them. 

We have not yet seen to what mod 
ern civilization is on its w r ay. It is 
making progress, it is true ; but what 
will it progress to ? To the utter and 
entire rejection of Christianity ; to the 
abolition of the "religious difficulty 
from legislation from education, and 
from domestic life to the relegating 
and banishing of religion from all pub 
lic life to the individual conscience and 
private life of man. .Civilization before 
Christianity was bad enough : but civ 
ilization which is apostate from Chris 
tianity, is worse than all. Before it 



DERIVED FROM ITS DIVINE HEAD. 217 

became Christian, civilization persecuted 
Christianity with the blind brute force 
of the heathen ; but apostate civiliza 
tion will know how to persecute with 
refined and cunning procedure, which 
nothing but a knowledge of Christian 
ity could have given. 

Look into the words and deeds I 
will not say of the first French Re vo 
lution that hideous masquerade of 
Feasts of the Supreme Being and wor 
ship of reason, with the abominable 
personifications of that worship I will 
not go so far back : what did we read 
yesterday ? A man at the head of the 
movement in Paris and yet a moder 
ate who has separated himself from 
the leaders of the extreme Revolution, 
wrote such words as these : " Why 
should not the churches be robbed ? 
Why should not the treasures of Notre 



218 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF THE CHURCH 

Dame be taken ? How were they ob 
tained ? By teaching people to believe 
in heaven and hell. It is money ob 
tained under false pretences ; there is 
no heaven and hell ; Frenchmen have 
ceased to believe in it." That is not 
yet the last word of civilization without 
Christianity ; but to that, and more, it 
has already come. 

There is as yet a time of stillness and 
indifference. Liberalism is a twilight 
state in which all errors are softened : 
in which no persecution for religion will 
be countenanced. It is the stillness 
before the storm. There is a time com 
ing when nothing will be persecuted 
but truth : and if you possess the truth, 
you will share it. 

We were told yesterday, again : " As 
for the temporal power of the Pope 
the temporal power is the public 



DERIVED FROM ITS DIVINE HEAD. 219 

recognition of the sovereignty of Jesus 
Christ over both orders, civil and spirit 
ual, the union of pontiff and king in 
one person, as pontiff and king are 
united in the Divine Head whom he rep 
resents we were told, " This strange 
anomaly has gone down in the tide of 
advancing civilization and progress." 
There is, indeed, a tide rising on every 
side ; and a wiser than the writer of 
those words has said : " As in the days 
before the flood, they were eating and 
drinking, and marrying and giving in 
marriage, and they knew not till the 
flood came and took them all away." 
So assuredly this rising tide of civiliza 
tion and progress will carry away the 
blind apostles who are now preach 
ing it. 

There remains in England, and I 
thank God to know it, much of the 



220 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF THE CHURCH 

Christian and Catholic tradition of our 
civil order still unbroken. The founda 
tions of our civil state were laid in 
times before regenerations and reforma 
tions and the adoration of pagan life 
and its examples had turned the heads 
of men. The foundations of our civil 
order date back a thousand years. Our 
monarchy, popular freedom, open tribu 
nals, maxims of just judgment, and the 
broad base upon which the public order 
of England reposes, were solidly and 
peacefully compacted, before modern 
civilization and modern progress had its 
name or being. There is in England a 
belief in Christianity as a Divine reve 
lation, and in the written Word of God 
as part of it, and a recognition of the 
duty of public worship, and respect for 
that first day of the week, sacred to our 
Lord s Eesurrection ; and above all, 



DERIVED FROM ITS DIVINE HEAD. 221 

there is that which Englishmen love, 
and which even the poor and the work 
ing men last year publicly testified to 
be their desire Christian education 

for their children. Thev desire that 

/ 

they be educated, indeed, but as Chris 
tians. The voice of the people of Eng 
land has been decisively heard on this, 
and I bless God for it. I speak not 
only to you who are of my flock, but 
to all who hear me, though they be not 
of my flock I would to God they 
were. Hold fast to those Catholic tra 
ditions of our land they are more pre 
cious than life itself. Hold fast to them, 
and hand them on as the true and only 
inheritance of Christian civilization, and 
of progress. 

I will believe in modern civilization, 
when I see its apostles lift up their 
hands and say to the Redeemer of the 



222 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

world with Thomas: "My Lord and 
my God ; " then I will believe. Mean 
while with Thomas I will say, " Non 
credam? I will not believe. 



OVER THE COURSE OF THE WORLD. 223 



LECTURE VI. 

THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD OVER THE 
COURSE OF THE WORLD. 



" And a voice came out from the throne, say 
ing : Give praise to our God, all ye His 
servants / and you that fear Him, little and 
great. And I heard as it were a voice 
of a great multitude, and as the voice of 
many waters, and as the voice of great 
thunders, saying, Alleluia: for the Lord 
our God, the Almighty, hath reigned" 
Apoc. xix. 

AFTER all that the world can do, God 
is still upon His throne : and after all 
the rebellions of man, He sits above the 



224 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF. GOD 

water-floods, and abides a King for 
ever. The last subject which remains 
for us is the sovereignty of God over 
the course of the world. 

This vision which St. John describes, 
is the summing-up of the whole history 
of the world, and of the conflict be 
tween the sovereignty of God and the 
rebellious will of man. This conflict 
began in Paradise, and will never cease 
until the Son of God shall come to 
judge the living and the dead. 

In these days any man who quotes 
the statutes of an earthly kingdom is 
listened to ; for an immediate, prompt, 
and inexorable power executes, at once, 
its sentence upon all gainsayers; but 
any man who quotes the laws of Holy 
Scripture is derided, because the Divine 
judgment tarries, and the sovereignty 
of God bides its time : because judg- 



OVER THE COURSE OF THE WORLD. 225 

ment is not speedily executed upon 
earth, the heart of man is set to do 
evil. But we are not ashamed to quote 
the words of Holy Writ ; for Holy Writ 
is the word of God, and "Heaven and 
earth shall pass away," but His word 
shall not pass away. 

The history written in Holy Scrip 
ture is God s history of His own sover 
eignty. From first to last, it is the 
history of the reign of God over the 
world : from the Creation, to the mani 
festation of His kingdom in Jesus Christ, 
the whole narrative of sacred history is 
the revelation of the sovereignty of 
.God over men and nations. It is, there 
fore, the history of the world written 
by a supernatural light ; and an inter 
pretation of the history of the world 
as it is read by the principalities and 
powers in heavenly places, to whom is 
15 



226 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

made known by the Church the mani 
fold wisdom of God. I take, therefore, 
the page of Holy Scripture as the wit 
ness of the sovereignty of God over 
the course of this world. To illustrate 
my subject, because I can do no more 
than give its outline, it is enough to 
remind you that, from Adam to Noe, 
God had His servants on earth, who 
did His will in the midst of those who 
rebelled against Him. He was sover 
eign over both : in grace over the faith 
ful, in justice over the rebellious. The 
Flood, which purged the earth, was an 
act of God s judicial sovereignty upon 
the sins of man. From Noe to Abra 
ham, from Abraham to Moses, from 
Moses to the Messias, that is, to the 
coming of God in our manhood, the 
sovereignty of God w r as more and more 
visibly displayed among men, until it 



OVER THE COURSE OP THE WORLD. 227 

was incorporated in the priesthood and 
the kingdom of Israel. But the the 
ocracy of Israel was only a shadow : a 
type and prophecy of a more manifest 
revelation, and a sovereignty yet to 
come. The law was the shadow, the 
gospel is the substance : that which was 
typified in the theocracy of Israel was 
fulfilled in the manifestation of God in 
Jesus Christ. The coming of our Di 
vine Lord into the world was the foun 
dation of His kingdom, and the revela 
tion of His sovereign power, which, by 
ihe line of His Vicars upon earth, He 
exercises at this day. 

Let us here take up again our last 
subject. We have seen that God has 
created two societies for the sanctifica- 
tion of man, the natural society, or 
the human and political or civil order : 
the supernatural society, or the order 



228 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

of grace, which is His Church; and 
that His will and predestination was, 
that those two societies should be uni 
ted together; so that as the body and 
soul in man constitute one perfect hu 
manity, so the natural and the super 
natural societies should be united to 
gether in their full integrity and perfect 
amity under one head, Jesus Christ, 
each retaining its due proportions of 
power, and both mutually co-operating 
for the welfare and sane tin* cation of 
mankind. This was our last conclusion. 
And I then pointed out that the civ 
ilization of mankind, to be true, must be 
Christian ; that no civilization is true 
but that which is Christian ; that civili 
zation, if it loses its Christianity, re 
turns again to the order of nature, and 
becomes merely human, and incurs all 
the penalties of its relapse; that all 



OVER THE COURSE OF THE WORLD. 229 

progress in the world, intellectual, mor 
al, social, civil, and political, depends, 
as upon its chief condition, on the di 
rection of the laws of Christianity ; and 
that when civilization departs from 
Christianity, instead of progressing, it 
goes backward, and falls from the order 
which God has instituted for its perfec 
tion : it relapses into the state of man 
before the Son of God came into this 
world, and the kingdom of God was 
revealed. When, therefore, we hear 
the Catholic Church, and, above all, the 
head of the Catholic Church, denounced 
as an obstacle to civilization and to 
progress, it is the whispering of that 
same tempting voice which, in the gar 
den, said, " Why hath God commanded 
you?" and "For God doth know."* 
Civilization, as the world preaches it, is 

* Gen. iii. 1-5. 



230 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

the will and the intellect claiming inde 
pendence of the laws of God; and 
progress is, man going where he wills, 
and doing as he lists. From the con 
clusion of our last subject, this follows 
as a corollary, that civilization with 
out Christianity is degradation, and 
that social progress out of the line 
of that civilization is a going back 
ward. 

There is no doubt that the Christian 
civilization of the world is, in part, bro 
ken up, and, in part, threatened, and 
that throughout the whole of Christen 
dom ; and I am met, therefore, at the 
outset, with the objection, " Where, 
then, is this sovereignty ? The nations 
of the world are casting it off. People 
that were Christian are Christian now 
no longer. Those who were highly 
Catholic have rejected, if not the Cath- 



OVER THE COURSE OF THE WORLD. 231 

olic Church, the temporal power of tho 
Vicar of Jesus Christ. You are too 
late in the day to talk of the sover 
eignty of God. In the middle ages it 
may have been superstitiously believed, 
but the illumination of these latter 
ages has cast it off." To this I reply : 
it is most true, as a fact, that these 
two societies, natural and supernatural, 
which ought to be united for the wel 
fare of mankind, are at this moment 
almost everywhere disunited. This sep 
aration began when the Oriental, or 
Eastern Church, severed itself from the 
unity of the Catholic Church, and fell 
under the supremacy of the Imperial 
power. From that time the civil power 
of the empire fostered, encouraged, and 
abetted the spread of schism for its own 
purposes. Eeligion, under the direction 
of the civil power, becomes a powerful 



232 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

instrument of political government. It 
becomes a department of the State, and 
a vast field for patronage. Such the 
separated Eastern Church became in 
the hands of the Byzantine Emperors. 
From that time it became intensely 
Erastian that is to say, the supreme 
fountain of its jurisdiction, and the su 
preme guide of all its legislation, and 
of its executive power, was in the civil 
authority. Flowing from this came 
unimaginable corruptions, which exist 
to this day. Perhaps there is no part 
of Christendom which exhibits a steril 
ity so utter, or a fixedness so rigid and 
death-like, as the Oriental Church sep 
arated from the Holy See. 

Next, the same usurpation by the 
civil powers manifested itself in the 
north and in the west of Europe. It 
would be against my will to go into 



OVER THE COURSE OF THE WORLD. 233 

any detail of matters nearer home ; but 
for clearness it must be said that, for 
the last three hundred years, in Ger 
many, and in these countries, the rela 
tion of the two societies, civil and 
spiritual, and the order which God had 
instituted, have been inverted. Religion 
has been made a part of legislation and 
of government. Religion and State 
Churches have been, as it is called, " es 
tablished." But this is the inversion 
of the whole Divine order. It is the 
State that needs to be established by 
the Church, not the Church by the 
State; the inferior cannot sustain the 
superior. It is not the order of nature 
that upholds the order of grace ; it is 
the order of grace that upholds and 
perfects the order of nature. All hu 
man power, human authority, human 
legislation, human society, depends, as 



234 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

I have shown, for its perfection, its per 
petuity, its progress, its welfare, its 
peace, upon the sovereignty of God, by 
and through His Church. The Church 
may hold and use temporal power, but 
it will not be established by it. In 
other countries, which profess to remain 
within the unity of the Catholic Church, 
has appeared a pernicious illusion, which 
has blinded and seduced many better 
minds. It is called the " Free Church 
in the Free State." This imagination 
rests on the assumption that the two 
societies are perfectly free and inde 
pendent one of another, which is abso 
lutely true of the Church, but abso 
lutely false of the State ; that they are 
two societies upon a perfect equality. 
This again is absolutely false, because 
the supernatural or Divine order is 
higher than the natural and human. 



OVER THE COURSE OF THE WORLD. 235 

Lastly, it assumes that they may go 
each their way without reciprocal du 
ties and mutual co-operation ; which is 
contrary to the law of God, both in na 
ture and in grace. We have seen that 
the supernatural society elevates and 
perfects the natural, even in the order 
of civilization. The separation of these 
two works of God is the loss and fall 
of the civil and political society of the 
world. But in the east, the north, the 
west, and now in the south of Christen 
dom, there are not only theories and 
principles, but actual policies and sys 
tems of legislation, the ultimate object 
of which is to divorce and to separate 
the two societies which God has created 
to be united together. You are aware 
that, in the Syllabus, the Holy See has 
condemned the following proposition : 
u That the Church ought to be separated 



236 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

from the State, and the State from the 
Church."* <* : 

Such are the historical facts. Let us 
now see what is the cause, what has 
brought about this separation of the 
two societies which ought to be united. 
In one word, it is the rejection of the 
sovereignty of God : first, by individuals 
rejecting, one by one, the prerogative of 
God over the intellect and over the will ; 
then, as they grew in number and in 
activity, forming a public opinion, which 
at last directs the course of legislation 
and rejects the sovereignty of God over 
society. And every Christian nation, 
England included, has reached an ad 
vanced point in this departure from 
God. You will ask, " How could this 
have ever come to pass ? How was it 
that the work of God s providence, which 

* Syllab. P. ix. Prop. 



OVER THE COURSE OF THE WORLD. 237 

was rising like sap in a vigorous and 
living tree, should have sunk down 
again to the root, and that the tree, 
once so green and widespread, should 
have begun to wither ? The truth 
must be told without fear. It was be 
cause in Christendom the salt had begun 
to lose its savor. The blood of Chris 
tian nations was tainted. Do not con 
found Christian nations with the Church 
of Jesus Christ. The Church is im 
perishable, immutable in its sanctity. 
Every heresy and schism, every pesti 
lence, moral, intellectual, and spiritual, 
the Church expels from its living sys 
tem, as the living and healthful action 
of the human body expels the morbid 
humors which threaten its life ; but in 
every nation individuals may corrupt 
and accumulate in number, and may at 
last do all manner of evil against the 



238 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

Church. For example ; in the period 
before the Council of Constance, the 
nations of Europe were beginning, from 
national pride and mutual jealousy, to 
rise against the spiritual authority of 
the Church, and to separate themselves 
and their laws from the laws of the 
Church, into what by a strange irony 
was called " obediences." This spirit 
of schismatical nationality caused what 
is called the great western schism : out 
of the great western schism came, ulti 
mately, what is called the Eeformation, 
or the final separation of many nations 
from the unity of the Catholic Church. 
But you may again ask, " What was the 
cause of this schismatical nationalism ? 
Then I will frankly say, at once, " The 
salt had lost its savor." Kings and 
princes, pastors and people, had for 
saken their first charity. They were 



OVER THE COURSE OF THE WORLD. 239 

led by the spirit of the world rather 
than by the Spirit of God. Zeal, self- 
denial, mortification, devotion, fidelity, 
piety, generosity, compassion for the 
poor, love of souls, were faint and low. 
Christian men lived lives that were not 
Christian ; society was corrupted ; and 
the course of kingdoms and of legisla 
tion swerved out of the track of faith. 
This is not to be denied. And what 
came next? Heresies and schisms. 
There is not a heresy, so far as I can 
remember, in the history of the Church, 
which has not begun in some bishop 
or priest. Some man ordained to be a 
witness of truth, and a preacher of jus 
tice, has fallen from the Church w:hich 
is divinely guided to teach the faithful, 
like as Satan fell like lightning from 
Heaven. They who should have been 
as a light to guide the intellect of men 



240 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

became a wildfire to blast and wither 
the soul. And whence came these here 
sies ? From intellectual pride ; that is, 
from the revolt of the intellect against 
the sovereignty of faith, springing from 
a perverse will and confirming its per 
version. From heresies came schisms 
like that which has separated England 
these three hundred years from the 
unity of the Church. Since that evil 
day, the spiritual life of England has 
withered. We are told by public au 
thority, that one half of the people of 
England never set their foot in a place 
of worship. Whether that calculation 
be true or not, I leave to those who 
made it to determine ; but we are told, 
and I repeat what I have heard, that in 
this city of London, one half that is, 
a million and a half of men on this 
very day, and at this very hour at which 



OVER THE COURSE OF THE WORLD. 241 

I am speaking, neither have been, nor 
in the course of this day will be, in any 
place of Christian worship. May I not 
well say, then, the salt has lost its sa 
vor ? And what is the result upon the 
public life and laws of England ? To 
legislate for a people divided in religion 
is impossible, unless we exclude religion 
from legislation. Christianity must be 
shut out of the sphere of legislation 
before you can make laws applicable 
to those wiio are divided in religion. 
What is the effect of such legislation ? 
Truth and error are put upon the same 
footing. Toleration becomes a duty, 
and under cover of toleration it has 
come to pass that the civil society of 
the world has ceased to distinguish 
truth from error. Christianity is left 
to the individual conscience ; it is no 
longer a matter of public law. Again, 
16 



242 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

in the education of children, religion 
must be excluded from the school ; or, 
in other words, the baptized child can 
not be educated in the faith of his bap 
tism : that is to say, he must be robbed 
of his inheritance. And why ? Because 
men will wrangle about religion, and 

o o > 

therefore their poor children are to grow 
up without the knowledge of God and 
their Redeemer. Men have broken the 
bonds of faith, and the penalty falls 
upon their children s children. 

The civil sooiety of the world, then, 
has been departing, in its legislation, in 
its public laws, in the education of the 
young, from the sovereignty of God 
through His Church. Now the con 
sequences of this are twofold. First of 
all, as to the Church. The Church has 
two offices : the one is to convert and 
to save individuals, and the other is to 



OVER THE COURSE OF THE WORLD. 243 

sanctify and to uphold the civil order of 
mankind. But when the civil society 
of man refuses any longer to be guided 
and upheld by the sanctifying grace 
and the sovereignty of God, the Church 
shakes off the dust from its feet, and 
goes back to its apostolic work of saving 
men one by one. It is at this time 
doing that work, and will do it ; and in 
doing it the Church becomes more free, 
more independent, more separate from 
all contacts and embarrassments of this 
world. It may indeed be persecuted, 
perhaps it may become fewer in num 
ber, because nations and races go out 
from it. But it becomes once more, 
what it was in the beginning, a society 
of individuals, vigorous, pure, living, 
and life-giving. So much for the con 
sequences to the Church. For the 
Church, then, we have no fear. But 



244 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

what is its consequence on the State 
or political society of men ? I may sum 
it up in these three words : it is priva 
tion, degradation, and dissolution. 

First, as man, when he separates him 
self from God, is deprived of super 
natural grace, which sustains his whole 
moral and spiritual life, even so the civil 
society of a nation, when it separates 
from the Church, in like manner is 
deprived of its supernatural perfection. 
It no longer has the support and guid 
ance, the light and sanctification, which 
the Kingdom of God bestowed upon it. 
Just as men are born, through the sin 
of Adam, into a state of privation, so 
the kingdom or people, which has sepa 
rated itself from the Church, is there 
fore deprived of the truth and grace of 
Christianity. Generation after genera 
tion are born into that state of public 



OVER THE COURSE OF THE WORLD. 245 

privation of the light and grace of 
faith. 

Secondly, if Christianity be the ele 
vation of a people, to fall from it is a 
degradation ; because, as I said in the 
beginning, it is a retrograde movement, 
a going backward from the state of 
Christian civilization into the state of 
nature before Christianity entered into 
the civil life of men. 

And, thirdly, it is dissolution; be 
cause the bonds of civil society are 
loosened. As man, who came out of 
the dust, when his living spirit departs, 
returns to dust again, so, most assur 
edly, every state or kingdom which re 
jects the sovereignty of God, in due 



time will dissolve and turn again into 
its original confusion. How this may 
happen we need not seek to know; 
whether by revolutions, or internal dis- 



246 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD. 

orders, or loss of coherence, or the im 
possibility of maintaining its social 
state, or by foreign aggression, by war 
fare, by conquest, by whatsoever means 
I know not; but the word of God 
stands plain, and sooner or later shall 
be fulfilled : " The nation and the king 
dom that will not serve Thee, shall per- 
ish ; : and that, not only by a judicial 
sentence, but by an intrinsic law of its 
own being, which works out its own 
dissolution. 

And if such be the effect of this re 
volt upon the civil society of the world, 
what is its effect upon men one by 
one? When families and households 
have lost the domestic Christianity, 
which illuminated and sanctified par 
ents and children, brothers and sisters, 
the result can be easily foreseen. If, 

* Isaias Ix. 12. 



OVER THE COURSE OF THE WORLD. 247 

as has been said before, submission to 
the sovereignty of God by faith be the 
perfection and the dignity of the intel 
lect, then, most assuredly, the loss of that 
submission is its abasement. If submis 
sion of the will to the sovereignty of 
God, to the laws of faith and of charity, 
be the perfection of the human heart, 
then, certainly, any man or woman who 
refuses to submit to that sovereignty is 
degraded. If to be a disciple of Jesus 
Christ be the highest and most perfect 
state to which we can attain, they who 
fall from that state of discipleship fall 
from their dignity and welfare. And 
when that is the condition of house 
holds, God help such a people, for 
there is no help left in themselves. 

Such, then, being the first conse 
quences upon states, families, and men, 
what must be the future of the world, 



248 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

in the course upon which nations and 
people have now entered ? First of all, 
the moral powers of the civil society 
of the world will become weaker and 



weaker. The moral authority, the 
moral sanctions, the moral influence, 
the power of prevailing over subjects 
to live in civil obedience, become less 
and less potent and persuasive in pro 
portion as the State departs from its 
public profession and practice of Chris 
tianity. As the government becomes 
weak, its power of coercing is paralyzed, 
its power of conciliating is lost. The 
same befalls the authority of parents 
over their children ; the moral self-con 
trol in which men ought to be trained 
up becomes impossible. Philosophers 
describe a man who has lost self-control 

that is, the government over himself 

as an intemperate man. And when 



OVER THE COURSE OF THE WORLD. 249 

men have lost the government over 
their passions, lusts, anger, avarice, and 
the like, what will be the state of society, 
of the commonwealth ? Next, while the 
moral power diminishes, the material 
power must be perpetually increased 
laws of coercion, penalties, police, 
standing armies. When men can no 
longer be governed by the free assent 
of the reason convinced of duty, and 
by the spontaneous obedience of the 
will submitted to the law, what remains 
to government but brute force ? At 
this moment, five or six millions of men 
are under arms in the heart of this 
Christian Europe of ours, and are look 
ing in each other s face, watching to 
see who shall make the first spring. 
St. Paul, describing the state of men in 
the last times, says that they shall be 
" faithless ; * the word in the original 



250 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

means men with whom you can make 
no treaties; aonbvdoi* men in whose fi 
delity you cannot trust ; with whom you 
can make neither convention nor truce, 
whom no international law, no respect 
of mutual rights can bind. And are 
not these last days now upon us? 
What treaty, or law, or obligation 
binding nations to respect the rights of 
weaker neighbors is respected now ? 
Treaties bind no one, if interest inter 
vene. Compacts and conventions per 
ish, where there is hope to extend a 
frontier, or to annex a province, or 
sacrilegiously to usurp a city. Then it 
is sufficient to put the sword through 
all treaties and all conventions. The 
fruit of this is manifest perpetual 
danger of external war, and the most 
horrible conflicts which this world has 

* 2 Tim. iii. 3. 



OVER THE COURSE OF THE WORLD. 251 

ever seen. And the conflicts which 
were external become internal, too. A 
spirit of strife is poured out upon men ; 
class is set against class, interest against 
interest, household against household, 
man against man, men against their 
rulers, against law, against authority. 
In the shock and disorder of conten 
tions, society is dissolved. When the 
masses learn to know their power, the 
day is come to use it. From all this 
results one of two things: either the 
tyranny of a multitude, blind to every 
thing but the freaks and gusts of its 
own will, or the iron despotism of a 
military dictator. Woe to the world 
when the Legislator, who, on the moun 
tain, promulgated the eight beatitudes, 
is no longer acknowledged as the Law 
giver and Sovereign of mankind ! There 
remains nothing for the nations but the 



252 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

raging sea of popular lawlessness, or 
the iron rule of despots. 

If such be the effect upon the world, 
what will be the effect upon the Church? 
Let us sum up what is the state of the 
Church at this moment. There never 
was a time, from the beginning of Chris 
tianity, when the Oatholic Church was 
so widespread as it is now; when it 
had so nearly attained to that univer 
sality which is its Divine prerogative. 
Though the number of nations and of 
men that are external to Christianity 
still be vast, yet the widespread mis 
sions of the Church, extending beyond 
its visible pale, are at this moment pen 
etrating into all races and peoples upon 
earth. The circle of its unity, the 
spread and sway of its Episcopate, the 
apostolic thrones of the Church, at this 
moment not only reach throughout the 



OVER THE COURSE OF THE WORLD. 253 

Old World, but overshadow the New. 
It has taken possession not only of the 
four continents known to our ancestors, 
but it holds also a fifth, with the islands 
of the Southern Seas. The sovereign 
ty which began in the guest chamber 
at Jerusalem, and afterwards spread 
through the dispersion of Israel, and 
then extended to the fulness of the 
Gentiles, and then formed Christian 
Europe, has taken possession of Amer 
ica in the North and in the South, and 
has penetrated into Asia; is surround 
ing Africa, has obtained for its posses 
sion the great continent of Australia, 
and has made its home in the islands 
of the Pacific. There is no part of the 
world in which the one Church, Cath 
olic and Roman, united to its one visi 
ble Head, is not at this moment to be 
found. Be sure of it, whatsoever may 



254 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

befall the civil society of the world, 
nothing can wither the mystical vine. 
There never was a moment when that 
world-wide Church was so perfectly 
united its pastors to its people, and 
both to their visible Head. 

The union of the pastors with their 
people is never so intense as when the 
world rejects them. Take Ireland, for 
example. The pastors of Ireland have 
been not only the spiritual shepherds 
of that inviolate Catholic people, but 
they have been the friends, the coun 
sellors I may say the guardians and 
rulers of Ireland, through three hun 
dred years of suffering. And that 
which has taken place in Ireland is 
taking place at this moment all over 
the Christian world. In France, in 
Germany, in Italy, in Spain, whereso 
ever the civil society of the world turns 



OVER THE COURSE OF THE WORLD. 255 

against the faith and against the Holy 
See, there at once the people rally 
round their pastors with an intensity 
of union and fidelity which has never 
been suqoassed. When the winds rave 
and the sun is covered, then the flock 
and their pastors draw together. And 
there is the same unity among the pas 
tors one with another. The bishops of 
the Church were never more of one 
mind and of one heart than they are 
now. We hear every day, in papers 
that profess to know the inmost mind 
of the Catholic Church, and yet know 
nothing, because they are either misled 
or they willingly go astray from truth 
and which it may be, I am not the 
judge to say we hear every day that, 
among the bishops of the Catholic 
Church who met last year in the (Ecu 
menical Council, there were opposi- 



256 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

tions, debates, divisions. True it is, 
that in matters of prudence and legis 
lation we had our divergences of judg 
ment; but in matters of doctrine and 
faith none existed. The result is proof. 
The world has endeavored to find 
among the bishops of the Church 
some patron or abettor of its rebellion 
against the Holy See. But not one can 
be found. Almost every one who, in 
the liberty which we all enjoyed, judged 
and spoke with freedom on matters 
outside the faith, have explicitly and 
publicly declared their perfect and en 
tire submission to the Divine authority 
of the Council. The unity of the pas 
tors of the Teaching Church was never 
so solid and compact. I say it without 
hesitation, and I repeat it again the 
Episcopate never was so unanimous as 
at this hour. After the Councils of 



OVER THE COURSE OF THE WORLD. 257 

Nice, Chaleedon, Constance, and Trent, 
there were bishops of the Church who 
forsook its unity, who fell, as I said be 
fore, like lightning from heaven. 

Now, at this moment, the unity of 
the bishops of the Church throughout 
the whole world is such, that I know 
not of one that has withdrawn his obe 
dience from its Divine authority. I 
know not, I say, of one, and until I see 
the fact, I shall believe there will be 
none. But. more than this : the unity 
of faith at this moment throughout the 
Catholic Church is such that there does 
not exist (what is rife elsewhere) an 
open question touching the matter of 
faith. There was a question, not open 
indeed, but not defined until the other 
day, and that question w r as this : " Did 
our Divine Saviour promise to St. Peter 
that he and his successors, by the Divine 
17 



258 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

assistance, should continue to the end 
of time to be the supreme and unerring 
teachers of the faith which He deliv 
ered ? There were a few who thought 
that the promise was made to the suc 
cessors of St. Peter, to be enjoyed by 
him only when united with the bishops 
throughout the world ; there were oth 
ers who believed that the promise was 
made not only to the successors of Pe 
ter with the bishops united, but to the 
successors of Peter as such ; and that, 
as the Pontiff holds the supreme au 
thority and jurisdiction attached to the 
Primacy, so he has also a Divine assist 
ance perpetually guiding him, in order 
that, in the exercise of his supreme au 
thority, upon which the whole Church 
of God depends, the successor of St. 
Peter and the Yicar of the Good Shep 
herd shall never go astray. There was, 



OVER THE COURSE OF THE WORLD. 259 

indeed, a divergence so far, and within 
that narrow limit : a divergence now 
closed forever by the Divine authority 
of the Church, and sealed with the sig 
net of the Spirit of Truth. I say, then, 
there never was a time when, in faith, 
the Church throughout the world was 

c,^ 

so united ; and united not only in what 
it believes, but in the principle upon 
which it believes ; because it holds with 
one heart the infallibility of the su 
preme and Divine authority from which 
all teaching flows. 

And, further, the Church is at this 
moment more self-evident in the eyes 
of men than in any previous age of the 
world. There never was a time when 
the words of our Lord were more em 
phatically, I may say, more articulately 
fulfilled, " A city that is set on a moun 
tain cannot be hid ; " * and most assur- 

* St. Matt. v. 14. 



260 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

edly the Catholic and Roman Church 
at this moment stands out with a defi 
nite universality, with a visible unity, 
with an effulgence of light never seen 
before. I do not think that anybody 
who professes to believe in a Church at 
all can stand for a moment in doubt 
whether the Church of Jesus Christ be 
the Greek Church, or the Anglican 
Church, or the Church Catholic and 
Roman, which spreads from sunrise to 
sunset. Our Lord said to His Apostles, 
" You are the light of the world," and 
never has that light shone out of dark 
ness with so luminous a splendor, giving 
evidence of itself, and testifying so 
clearly to its own existence and to its 
own authority, as at this hour. The 
sovereignty, therefore, of God, mani 
fested through His Church, is at this 
moment more than ever revealed to the 



OVER THE COUESE OF THE WORLD. 261 

intellect and to the heart of men. 
Whether they will believe or whether 
they will not believe, there is a system 
spreading from east to west not only 
claiming eighteen hundred years of 
traditionary history, but exercising its 
prerogatives at this day, and manifestly 
seen to exercise them : known also 
never to have abdicated them for an 
hour; inflexible in its fidelity to the 
Divine revelation, requiring of all men 
from its highest pastor, the supreme 
Pontiff, who sits on the throne as Vicar 
of Jesus Christ, down to the little Cath 
olic child in the school the same act 
of faith, the same submission of the in 
tellect and of the will to the sovereignty 
of God. No one is exempt from that 
changeless law of faith and of submis 
sion. It is one and the same for all. 
Now, a system like this is so unlike 



262 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

anything human, it has upon its notes 
tokens, marks so altogether supernat 
ural, that men now acknowledge it to 
be either Christ or Anti-Christ. There 
is nothing between these extremes. 
Most true is this alternative. The 
Catholic Church is either the master 
piece of Satan or the kingdom of the 
Son of God. 

Now I will conclude by drawing two 
very plain consequences : first, that all 
things are fulfilling the will of God. 
All things are for the sake of His elect, 
and He is accomplishing in the world 
His sovereignty in a way so unerring 
and so luminous, that they who believe 
can see it, and they who will not be 
lieve, in their blindness seem to be re 
duced to railing instead of reasoning 
against it. I have pointed out that 
there has been a line of the faithful 



OVER THE COURSE OF THE WORLD. 263 

servants of God, in all ages, from the 
beginning, an unbroken chain, link 
within link; from just Abel down to 
the present day. This line of faithful 
became a people, chosen and preserved, 
by the grace of God, before and after 
the Incarnation ; organized and knit 

X 

together into one kingdom of faith. 
The typical Church of Israel was a 
shadow ; the substance of the shadow 
is the Church of Jesus Christ This 
family of grace is the special object, for 
the salvation of which all the order of 
God s sovereignty has been and is di 
rected. The empires of the ancient 
world were employed to chastise, or to 
liberate, or to restore, or to scatter it. 
The kingdoms and revolutions of the 
Christian world, in like manner, fulfil 
His purpose towards His elect. 

God willed all men to be saved, and 



264 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

to come to the knowledge of the Truth. 
He willed also that all men should be 
called to the unity of the Church. His 
Apostles were sent to make disciples of 
all nations. Whoso will believe, he may 
freely enter into it; whoso will not be 
lieve, he closes the door against himself. 
The gates of the heavenly city stand 
open day and night ; God never shuts 
them. They who have never heard of 
the kingdom of God will not have to 
give an account of it. They will be 
judged by the little they knew, and 
not by that which they could not have 
known. Those who might have known 
it, will be judged according to the way 
in which they received or rejected the 
light that was offered to them. All 
things are ordered for this work of sal 
vation. God knows from all eternity 
who will be saved, and how many they 



OVER THE COURSE OF THE WORLD. 265 

will be. He does not diminish the num 
ber by refusing salvation to the willing, 
and He will not multiply the number 
by forcing the freewill of those who 
will not believe. It is a mystery of 
sovereign grace and of human freedom. 
All things are working for the accom 
plishment of the mystery of salvation : 
" all things work together for good to 
those who love God." * Even the sins 
and the wickedness, and the persecu 
tions of this world, all tend to the sal 
vation of those who believe. This world 
is the wine-press, in which the grapes 
are trodden ; it is the threshing-floor, 
on which the wheat is beaten and win 
nowed from the chaff. The wine and 
the wheat are being made ready for 
the supper of the Lamb in the kingdom 
of God. These are the elect of God, 

* Rom. viii. 28. 



j TJJ1-; BOVH OF GOD 

who are faithful, and perse vere in faith 
unto the end. The words, therefore, of 
John the Jjjjpti.st are true at this hour. 

Divine Lord is in the midst of His 
Church, and "His; fan is in His hand, 
and He will thoroughly cleanse His 
floor, and Anther His wheat into the 
h;irn ; hut the chaff He will hum with 

unquenchable fibred* If this he not 

.sovereignty, in what does it consist ? 
And it is of this the Apostle spoke when 
he said, in his own name and in the 
name of his succcs.-ors, " We are unto 
Cod the ^ood odor of Christ, in them 
who are .saved and in them who perish : 
to some, indeed, the odor of death unto 
death; hut to the others, the odor of 
life unto life."f That work of separa 
tion is ^oin;j; on now. Jt is not stayed, 
hut accomplished hy the apostasy of 
the civil order of men. Men may go 

- * St. Matt. iii. 12. f ^ OOF, ii- 15, KJ. 



OVER THE COURSE OF THE WORLD. 267 

their way in the civilization they have 
chosen, and in the progress of which 
they boast, but they will not dimmish 
by one jot or tittle the sovereignty of 
God over the world. No ; nor will they 
diminish the manifestation of that sov 
ereignty in the confusions and torments 
of the world, to which it is hastening in 
speed. Its disorders, its revolutions, the 
rising of people against people and king 
dom against kingdom, the dissensions 
among brethren, the treason against 
laws, the conspiracies which undermine 
the social order of the world, the visi 
ble changing into death and into dust 
which is upon the whole political order 
of men who have renounced Christian 
ity, all this manifests, by an uncon 
scious acknowledgment, the sovereignty 
of God. The Church, by its unity, its 
universality, its luminous action upon 
the intellect of men, whether they will 



268 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

believe or not ; the Holy See, imperish 
able in the midst of eighteen hundred 
years of conflict, imperial over the in 
tellect and will of men, reigning in the 
supernatural order over nations, races, 
and people; all these things manifest 
the sovereignty of God. When St. Paul 
was shipwrecked upon the coast of 
Malta, a viper came out of the fire and 
fastened on his hand. The people at 
first said, "This is a murderer, whom 
the vengeance of God will not suffer 
to live." But when they saw that he 
neither swelled nor fell down dead, 
when he shook the deadly beast into 
the fire, they changed their minds, and 
they said that he was a god. Surely 
the reason of man, seeing that the end 
less, manifold, world-wide, unrelenting 
enmity of the serpent has never pre 
vailed over the Catholic and Roman 
Church ; that all the power and malice 



OVER THE COURSE OF THE WORLD. 269 

of the world have never been able to 
overthrow the sovereignty of the Holy 
See, even though revolutions may sac 
rilegiously occupy the city of Rome, 
which the providence of God has given 
to be the throne of His Vicar though 
at first men may think the Church of 
Jesus Christ to be Antichrist, they must, 
on calmer, wiser thoughts, conclude that 
there is in it a life which is not of man, 
and a power, which is not for evil, but 
for good ; and if so, it must be the life 
and power of God. 

I have come now to the end of what 
I have endeavored to say. You will 
recollect that we have seen, first, that 
the sovereignty of God over the intel 
lect by faith illuminates, elevates, and 
perfects the reason of man, and that to 
reject faith is to degrade the reason. 
Secondly, that the sovereignty of God 
over the will by the law and grace of 



270 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD 

charity, perfects the -image of God in 
man. Thirdly, that the sovereignty 
of God over the whole civil order and 
collective commonwealth of men, is the 
principle from which the welfare and 
well-being, the civilization, the progress 
of human society depends. And now 
I have traced out, slightly and faintly, 
and only in outline, as I well know, the 
sovereignty of God over the whole 
world, enough, at least, to show that 
the apostasy of the world does in no 
way diminish that sovereignty, but that 
in its rebellion it is accomplishing and 
perfecting the work to which that sover 
eignty is directed; and further, that at 
this time there are tokens which, I 
might almost say, are like the voices 
and thunderings in heaven, and the 
writings of a man s hand upon the wall, 
warning the world of those things which 
are coming upon the earth. There are 



OVER THE COURSE OF THE WORLD. 271 

voices as the voices of a great multi 
tude, not only in heaven, but on earth. 
These earthly voices are discordant, 
harsh, and terrific. They are the cries 
of Anti-christian and anti-social revo 
lutions, visible on the face of nations, 
of dark and sanguinary conspiracies, 
hiding themselves under the surface of 
the earth more perilous, because not 
seen. The time is come when the only 
safety for nations and for men is in the 
recognition of the sovereignty of God. 
There is nothing else that can save the 
Christian society of the world noth 
ing else that can save the soul in the 
day of the great account. 

" There were great voices in heaven, 
saying : The kingdom of this world is 
become our Lords s and His Christ s, 
and He shall reign for ever and ever. 
Amen. 



272 THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD. 

" We give Thee thanks, Lord God 
Almighty, who art, and who wast, and 
who art to come ; because Thou hast 
taken to Thee Thy great power, and 
Thou hast reigned. 

"And the nations were angry, and 
Thy wrath is come, and the time of the 
dead, that they should be judged, and 
that Thou shouldst render reward to 
Thy servants, the prophets, and the 
saints, and to them that fear Thy Name, 
little and great; and shouldst destroy 
them who have corrupted the earth." * 

" Great and wonderful are Thy works, 
Lord God Almighty ; just and true 
are Thy ways, King of Ages. 

" Who shall not fear Thee, Lord, 
and magnify Thy Name? For Thou 
only art holy : for all nations shall come 
and shall adore in Thy sight, because 
Thy judgments are manifest." f 

* Apoc. xi. 15, 17, 18. t Ibid. xv. 3, 4.