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attached to their religion. Little children were beaten half to death; the hair and ears of women were cut off: they were mounted on asses, and led about in the most unseemly and shocking guise. The instance of John Cantabel deserves particular notice. Cantabel was an honest peasant, sincerely attached to the religion of his fathers. He happened to have a little catechism which was published by the non-juring clergy: it was found in his house; and this was a sufficient crime. A committee of municipal officers ordered the catechism to be burnt; a great fire was made; Cantabel was brought forth, and commanded to throw the book into it. “No," says the heroic peasant, “it contains the principles of

my religion; it has been my guide and my comfort, and it nows gives me the courage to tell you, that I will never commit it to the flames." Upon this he was threatened but still he remained resolute. One of the ruffians seized a flaming torch, and held it under his hand. “Burn on," said he, "you may burn not only my hand, but my whole body, before I will do any thing to dishonour my religion." He was afterwards mounted on a horse, his back to the head and the tail in his hand, and was thus conducted about amidst the shouts of the rabble. The vile wretches, when tired with their sport, suffered him to creep home, more dead than alive.-- This is the liberty of conscience in the “ Age of Reason!This is the toleration we might expect from Atheists, from these infidel philosophers, who are continually exclaiming against the prejudices of their forefathers, and against the sad effects of bigotry and religious zeal. In the cant of these enlightened reformers, this peasant was a fanatic, an aristocrat, a rebel to the lar, and, as such, they will tell you that he was worthy of death.

CHURCH HISTORY.

(Continued from page 41.)

CHAP. I, THE CHURCH FROM THE CREATION TO THE GOING

OUT FROM EGYPT. By means of the visible Churcb, it has been God's pleasure, that the revelations of His will should be communicated and preserved. To Her He has given bis covenants of grace and mercy; Her patriarchs, prophets, and priests, have, under His authority or commission, been "stewards of His mysteries," and beralds of His commands and counsels.

The office of the visible Church on earth is to conduct mankind to the invisible Churcb; to the society of Saints and glorified partakers of God's kingdom and presence in Heaven. In all matters, relating to Him and the invisible world of Spirits, man cannot with certainty know any thing, but that, wbich God bimself is pleased to reveal. Neither can be with satisfactory assurance rely upon any directions, how to attain God's blessings, or to escape God's wrath, unless they be the directions of God Himself. We may by our own reason guess this or that; or we may from wbat we know, conclude this or that wbich we do not know, to be possible or perbaps probable. But we cannot, without God's assurance, arrive at certainty in the most important of all knowledge. Religion, its duties, its bopes, its promises, its means, its conditions, all must be sub jects of only God's power to declare. On His authority and by His decrees alone can Religion be offered, or enforced. No created being can bave authority, unless it be a delegated authority, to make laws or revelations in things pertaining to God, and our spiritual state.

Accordingly we shall find, in the History of the Churcb from the beginning to this day, that God has

always, either in person, or by His authorised minis. ters, informed, assured guided and governed the Churcb-has committed to her His covenants, sacraments, ordinances, and laws. She has always been one Church, under one Lord.

We are apt to fall into a careless habit of using terms, which betray us into an incorrect mode of thinking respecting the Church. A confused idea is presented to our minds, as though there were more Churches than one. Thus we speak of the Patriarchal Church, the Jewish Church, the Christian Church, as though they were a succession of entirely different Churches; instead of being, as they are, the same Church in different stages of its existence, and under different circumstances of its progress. The more accurate mode of speaking of it would bethe Church, under the Patriarchal polity or dispensation—under the Jewish-under the Christian.

Its chief design is always the same; The authority is the same; the Head is the same; the Spirit which governs and preserves it is the same.

The only change is in the laws, the machinery and the revelations-varying in character and fulness according to the varied circumstances of its members, wbose salvation and religious training is always its grand design. To them it is always God's Church, baving one scheme in operation for bringing men to Him, by means of wbich He is the only judge, and which only His authority, either immediately exercised by Himself in person, or mediately by those to whom He expressly commits it, can determine or modify.

In the days of man's innocence, in those after the fall, in those of the Patriarchs, in those of the Jews, and in those of Christianity, it has been, and it will ever be the same, must rest on the same autbority, and be under the same direction. Just as the infant, the boy, the youth, and the fullgrown man, are the same person, whatsoever changes be may have undergone, during these several stages of his existence, in form, in stature, in knowledge, in station, in place, in dress, and in action. He is nevertheless the same person,

and sprung from the same parent. So the Church in every period is the same, and the offspring of the same Parent.

It is, therefore, that our sketch of the Church should comprehend all its principal stages from its first rise, and should notice some leading features of God's dealings and government, in it through its several stages. And we shall find proofs of the positions we have bere laid down; that He bas never ceased to guide and govern it either in His own person, or by laws and ministers specially appointed and commissioned by Him. The portion of Church History, of wbich we purpose to treat in this our first Chapter extends from the creation to the time, when the children of Israel leaving Egypt, under the direction of Moses, became a distinct nation.

But, before we proceed to make our remarks upon the facts, in wbich the principles laid down are traced in practice, it may be useful to explain some peculiar points in that part of the Bible in which the facts are recorded. These explanations will be necessary to enable the reader to form a correct judgment of the sense, in which the sacred bistorian is to be understood. For words, however carefully chosen, are liable to bear a doubtful meaning, and to be perverted to captious questions. And sometimes the doubt or question of a particular passage can be solved, only by the general tenor of the history, and the circumstances and habits of those to whom it is addressed. We may be assured, that Moses from the dictates both of the Holy Spirit, by whom he was informed, and of his own “Common Sense,” would desire, to use language, in that sepse, in wbich he knew that those, to whom it was addressed, would from the nature of the case, their peculiar habits, customs, and circumstances, naturally understand it.

were

If a writer of English History were now to state in general terms that such and such public proceedings took place in tbe reign of George the first, without specifying by what authority they were done, we should surely understand bim to mean that they were done under the same authority as they would be done nonunder the authority of the Laws of the Land. We should not need to have this specially told to us, because it is state of things to wbich we are accustomed, and wbich we naturally presuppose. In like manner the Jews in the days of Moses accustomed to regard all religious observances, as under the direction and control of God; and they would therefore naturally understand Moses as implying in all those cases which he might mention in bis history, they were always so, unless he should expressly declare to them the contrary. If in speak. of religious observances he meant at any time that the Jews should understand them to be of

any

other authority than that of God, (which was their habitual view of them) he would have said so.

The history of the facts of the present chapter is written in the Pentateuch, or five books of Moses, as they are named. But, though we call this bistory the five books, and for convenience of refering to them, and arrangement of the subjects, they have been so divided, there can be little doubt but that they were originally only one book. And, as far as we can gatber, they were not collected, nor even reduced to writing till the law had been delivered by word of mouth to the Jews. All tbe ordinances, sacrifices, and ministrations, had been preached to them by Moses as coming from God, and having of course God's authority. Though parts of the law might have been committed to writing as soon as delivered, it is quite clear that other parts of the history could not have been written till the latter part of the life of Moses. And the whole state of the case renders

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