Sidor som bilder
PDF
ePub

all rights and titles, and hurled into eternity Kings, Queens, Nobles, Bishops, Priests, Nuns and Friars. And, to our grief and sorrow, the same impious notions spread far and near, in our own days, among nominal Christians. For several Editors and Orators have the hardihood to laud, and urge on, rebellions and insurrections in all foreign countries, te render life and property the sport of murderers, church plunderers, and robbers.

Whilst the Rulers and the people remained convinced that, for the attainment of peace and equity here, or salvation hereafter, they should love and serve God, revere and obey his Church, the spirit of religion pervaded the whole community and sanctified the public laws and institutions. Then, the rulers and the Priesthood went hand in hand to preserve the weak and the simple from the wiles and might of the knowing ones. Holy Mother, the Church, stood as a mediator between the Ruler and the ruled ; tempering him, if cruel or oppressive, and them, if brutal or seditious. She kept the different members of the body of Christ, within their respective spheres, from tearing and mangling one another. Hence, the deadly hatred of the emissaries of Satan, the lovers of anarchy, against the Pope and Bisnops.

The believers in Christ's lordship, over temporal and spiritual matters alike, hold that the moral and social relations are but an index of the true faith, or rather faith itself reduced to practice ; that the Lord is the owner, and we the managers, or stewards, of whatever talents and property we possess ; that the Master going to the far country, to ascend into heaven, distributed among us the talents to trade with, and that he will again call for the same talents and the profits. They also say with Zacheus, Luke XIX : Behold, Lord, half our property we give to the poor, and, if we have wronged any man of any thing, we restore four-fold. In holding it as an essential principle to restore the ill-gotten goods to the owners, if they could be found, otherwise to the poor or for charitable purposes, they are guided by the holy Catholic Church St. Augustine, epist. 54. ad Macedonium. "If the other man's property, whereby the sin is committed, be not restored, when it can be restored, the penance is not real, but fictitious. And if it be really performed, the sin is not remitted, unless the thing taken be restored ; but, as I have said, when it can be restored. For it generally happens that the person who took it, loses, it through others or by his own extravagance, and has not any ineans to make restitution. Surely we could not say to such a person : Restore what thou hast taken, unless we think that he has the means and denies them. As to the doctors, lawyers and other officials, who, in the course of their practice, make property by exorbitant sees, it is easier for them, when they change their life and turn to God, to bestow what they had unjustly amassed, upon the poor, as they should their own property, than to restore it to the owners. And in regard to the people who, contrary to the law of civil society, have gathered property by theft, usury, (interest,) extortion, fraud, or oppression, it ought to be restored rạther than bestowed, in imitation of the publican Zacheus.” Thou shalt not over-reach, or circumvent thy neighbor in any business : for God is the avenger of all such things, saith St. Paul.

Although the divine Legislator might on various titles, claim our unqualified obedience to his law : first, for having created us out of nothing to his own image and likeness, when he had no need of us ; second, for having endowed us with sense and reason, free will and understanding ; third, for having bestowed upon us a body with all its admirable organs, for the fulfilment of the spiritual and corporal functions ; fourth, for having provided this earthly paradise for our abode, the sun, moon, and stars to enlighten and vivify us, the air and water to cool and refresh us. Gen. I. 29. And God said : Behold I have given you every herb bearing seed upon the earth, and all the trees that have in themselves seed of their own kind, to be your meat ;

and to all the beasts of the earth, and to every fowl of the air, and to all that move upon the earth wherein there is life, that they may have to feed upon ; fifth, when the fulness of the time was come, God sent his Son, made of a woman, made under the law, that he might redeem them who were under the law; and that we might receive the adoption of sons, and be enabled to cry: Abba, Father. Lastly, for having formed his one Fold, the holy Catholic Church, as the depository of his law and his graces, the gospels and sacraments, for our sanctification. These manifold titles notwithstanding, our good Father promises to the observers of his law, rewards, both spiritual and temporal : Jesus said to him: If any one love me, he will keep my word, and my Father will love him, and we will come to him, and will make our abode with him. He that loveth me not, keepeth not not my words. And the word which you heard, is not mine, but the Father's, who sent me ; John XV. 23. And again, Jesus said to them : Every one that hath left house, or brethren, or sisters, or father, or mother, or wife, or children, or lands, for my name's sake, shall receive an hundred-fold, and shall possess life everlasting. Matt. XIX. 29.

But alas, many false prophets, as it had been predicted by Christ, our Lord, Matt. XXIV. 11., rose and seduced many ; and the depraved people and corrupt time foretold by the Apostle, 2 Tim. IV. 3., have arrived ; and the dreadlul revolt and reign of antichrist, prophesied by the same Apostle, 2 Thess. II. 3., really came to pass in the sixteenth century ; when people calling themselves Christians, lovers of the Bible and the meeting house, promoters of missions and abolitionists of slavery, separated from the Fold of Christ, and by a national declaration, make mockery of the laws of God and of the institutions of his Church, and composed the Book of Common Prayer, and the

XXXIX ARTICLES. “XI. We are accounted righteous before God, only, for the “merit of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, by faith : and “not for own works and deservings. Wherefore, that we are “justified by faith only, is a most wholesome doctrine and very “ full of comfort, as is more largely expressed in the Homily of justification.”

These Articles that were hatched by Elizabeth, her goodly bishops, and Parliament, in 1751, after they detached themselves from the Church, are adopted as a solemn profession of faith by the English and American Protestants, in the Book of Common Prayer. It is really astonishing that they have the hardihood to show their face in any enlightened or civilized society, after they have adopted Articles that are evidently subversive of the whole Christian religion. When they imagine that faith, only, in the merit of Christ Jesus, apart from any works or deservings on their part, justifies them, they will no longer shun evil, or do good; but they will give full scope to their brutal appetites, and set at naught the laws of his Church. “That they are justified by faith only, is a most wholesome doctrine, and very full of comfort,” to thieves and robbers, to debauchees and Church plunderers. Unfortunate Protestants ! your worm shall never die, and your fire shall be never quenched. Isa. LXVI. 24.

On the contrary, Christ Jesus hath given commandments, Matt. XIX. 18: Thou shalt do no murder ; Thou thalt not commit adultery ; Thou shalt not steal ; Thou shalt not bear false witness ; Honor thy father and thy mother ; Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself. But if thou wilt enter into lise, keep the commandments. And again, He saith, Matt. XXV. 33., on the final separation of the sheep from the goats, to them that shall be on his right hand : Come, ye blessed of my Father, possess you the kingdom prepared from the foundation of the world. For I was hungry, and you gave me to eat: I was thirsty, and you gave to drink : I was a stranger, and you took me in ; naked, and you covered me : sick, and you visited me: I was in prison, and you came to me. Verse 40. Amen, as long as you did it to one of these my least brethren, you did it to me. Behold eternal reward, possession of the kingdom of heaven, promised by Christ Jesus, for our own good works and deservings, if we keep the commandments, love our neighbor as ourselves ; if we feed the hungry, clothe the naked, redeem the prisoners. But the miserable schismatics fancy that they have no need of doing good works or deser. vings ; that faith alone in the merit of Christ justifies them.The devils have faith and they tremble. Now come and see how foreign and contradictory is the schismatics' notion to the testimonies of both Testaments, and sacred doctrines of the holy Catholic Church; see the bitter and terrific fruits of their unchristian notion, in the prostration of all the bounds between right and wrong, justice and injustice ; and in the legalized system of banks and usury, fraud and iniquity, throughout England and America, and whereever the infernal spirit of the XXXIX Articles prevails.

Gen. IV. 7. If thou do well, shalt not thou receive ? but if ill, shall not sin forthwith be present at thy door ? but the lust thereof shall be under thee, and thou shalt have dominion over it.

Matt. X. 42. And whosoever shall give to drink to one of these little ones, a cup of cold water only, in the name of a disciple, amen, I say to you, he shall not lose his reward.

Matt. XVI. 27. For the Son of man shall come in the glory of his Father with his Angels : and he will render to every man according to his works.

Matt. XXV. 41. Depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, which was prepared for the devil and his angels : for I was hungry, and you gave me not to eat: I was thirsty and you gave me not to drink, &c. And these shall go into everlasting punishment ; but the just, into life everlasting.

« FöregåendeFortsätt »