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and simple remedy for all this. Romanism, like every other false system of religion, is formidable mainly as it is liable to become strong in the emoluments and power of the state. It is not as a spiritual system that it is terrible; but as a system which under that name is disposed to take upon it the form, and to manifest the spirit, of a worldly tyranny, lifting its head in the pride of a mitred lordship, and subduing all who dissent from it by means of the weapons belonging to the civil power. To render even Popery comparatively harmless, the easy method would be, that all sound Protestants should join heart and hand in declaring that this dangerous connexion between religion and the state shall come to an absolute end. Persecution, and the fear of it, would thus be done away, as the power from which alone it can gather strength would not be suffered to exist. So long as the pomp and opulence of the present hierarchy shall continue, Popery must be dangerous, for of all these things it has been despoiled, and it is natural that it should seek to regain them. The heaviest blow that could be inflicted upon it would be in the resolve of Protestant Britain to put an end to such things, to restrict the functions of the state to its proper civil duties, and to make the great object of contention to be, not a religious ascendancy of any kind, but the ascendancy of social justice, of equal civil rights. And to this pass we are confident things will come. Had these views been aeted upon from the beginning, Christianity would have been saved from the foulest stain in its history-from the whole of that stain we mean which belongs to the story of Christian persecution; and only in proportion as the principles become prevalent which would have prevented persecution in the past, will the disgrace and misery of it be precluded from the future.
Art. II. The Life and Times of Archbishop Sharp, (of St. Andrews) .
By Thomas STEPHEN, Med. Lib. King's College, &c. 8vo. pp. 640. London : Rickerby.
THIS is one of the most malignant books that we have en,
countered for a long time. Indeed, such is the folly and inconsistency of the volume, that we should have thrown it aside, had it not been for its thorough spirit of blind bigotry and intolerance. It is by an officer of King's College. It is a book that, no doubt, will be put into the hands of the youthful students of that youthful institution, as one imbued with the true conservative spirit in Church and State, which it is the wish of a certain party to diffuse as universally as possible amongst our growing youth, in opposition to the great spirit of the age ; and, taken in conjunction with indications lately given by the students at Oxford, may open the eyes of a good many who are fondly flattering themselves that knowledge and enlightened sentiment are now grown so strong as to force themselves into even the darkest dens of selfishness and party. But party and selfishness will never care a straw for knowledge and enlightened sentiment while in pursuit of the loaves and fishes. They will never turn one glance even upon them while the burning and shining light of a wealthy state establishment is before them. The great ‘prizes are the only objects that can command their attention, and gazing eagerly after them, they will run on, treading over knowledge, experience, and even public scorn with indifference, and affording only a growl as they go by to those who are inclined to warn them or to laugh. This volume is a regular growl of this sort. It is written by one of the true old school of high Church and State men—a species of creatures that many
readers can scarcely realize to themselves in all their ancient completeness of absurdity. They are thorough advocates for arbitrary power and passive obedience, spite of all that those doctrines brought upon this country under the Stuarts, spite of the glori"ous Revolution of 1688,' and all that has been said and sung about it, and spite also of all the blessings that have followed in its train. They would like but one state of things, and that is, that Tories should be in office, and the Church trinmphant over all Great Britain. The only way for Queen Victoria to become, in their eyes, a great and wise princess, would be to give the Archbishops of Canterbury and York a commission to exterminate all the troublesome fry of sectarians and papists; and to Wellington another commission to execute it for them. To them Laud and Sharp have died in vain ; in vain died Charles I.; in vain was James II, driven out of these indignant realms for his attempts on liberty. What good does this liberty, what good does the growth of social happiness, or the spread of civilization do them while Scotland is in the hands of the Presbyterians, while there are Papists in Ireland, and Dissenters in England ? True, they have got a grand estate in the Church of England; they have a noble endowment from the nation here to civilize and Christianize it, while the Dissenters and the Methodists (who are neither dissenters nor consenters according to their own account) are doing the greater part of the work for them. They have all the colleges, and all those pleasant dormitories, the cathedrals; they have the church wealth of Ireland too without the trouble of instructing the people—the Catholic priests do that for them there--what then would they be at? They would be at the church of Scotland. They never can get over that being in any hands but theirs. They cannot bring themselves to comprehend, for a moment, what business any but the only true Church have with state property: how they came to be that only true church we may leave them to settle with Rome. Many are the • long lingering looks' which they cast towards Scotland, and the time when a gracious and considerate monarch had palmed them upon that country, where they might have now been sweetly pillowed in canonical ease and glory had it not been for those very impudent and unreasonable people the Puritans. Those graceless usurpers would have the government of the church which they had formed themselves. They were so selfish as to insist upon those who did the work having the pay for it. Never was astonishment like that of the English bishops at this unparalleled audacity. Had not the English nonconformists allowed thein to have the livings while they did the preaching, and the reforming of the people? Had not the Irish been content to give up to them the churches and church lands, and allowed the priests to do all the work of pastoral exhortation and visitation ? did not want the ecclesiastical labours, they only wanted the ecclesiastical ease. But the Scotchmen were a thick-headed nation just then; they neither could nor would understand this episcopal logic, which had prevailed elsewhere—it was too deep for them; so they even took to their cudgels and their claymores, and drove all the jure divino tribe of kings and bishops out of the country. Hinc illæ lacryme.
The present Life has two objects, both of which are subservient to this great principle of ecclesiastical lamentation; the ostensible one is to white-wash the renegade persecutor, Archbishop Sharp; the other, and more important one, to proclaim the doctrine that neither is there legitimate religion, nor legitimate government in the world, especially the world of these wealthy kingdoms, except under the shadow of episcopacy and absolute monarchy. All else is treason against heaven and earth, vile rebellion, and viler heresy, which nothing but the power of the prince of darkness, and the folly of men, who do not know what is good for them, could so strangely and daily prosper and diffuse as they do. If any one imagines that we at all exaggerate the views and opinions of this party, or of this book, let them look into the book itself. We will present them with a specimen from the introduction. And, by the way, this introduction takes care to begin with the beginning of things. It wanders away from the prelate of St. Andrew's to inform us, at the outset, that there was an ancient church in Britain, unquestionably planted by St. Paul: that emissaries from this church in South Britain planted the church in Ireland and Scotland; and that this British church has continued to the present day, and is no other than the Established Church of England. If any one should imagine that it signifies little whether Christianity was first planted in Britain by St. Paul, or St. Peter, or Joseph of Arimathea, so that it was planted in its purity, we would have him to know that it is of the greatest consequence. It is of the most serious moment, at all events, that it should not be planted by St. Peter, for it is the present earnest desire of the Church of England to assure the world that though it may imagine that the Church of England is directly derived from the Church of Rome, that it is quite mistaken—that it is nothing of the kind. The Church of England is one of those wise children that know their own parents, and it is quite determined not to be the daughter of the great scarlet woman. No, that is a scandal—it is the daughter of the ancient British church. This is the great labour of the Church of England at the present day—to get rid of the stain of that parentage. It is willing to admit that the scarlet woman came in a very presuming, audacious, and overwhelming way, and took possession of the British church's house, usurped the whole use and possession of it, and turned the poor British church out of doors, where it kept her till that kind and uxorious monarch, Henry VIII., restored her to her own hearth, and drove the intruder again across the Channel. There are, indeed, some little difficulties connected with this history, as there are in all histories, some knotty points in the genealogical table, as there are in all genealogies; but none which the Church of England cannot get over, because it is admitted that it is an established axiom in popular philosophy, that “where there is a • will there is a way,' and she is determined to get over them. For instance, however unquestionable it may be that St. Paul planted the Church in England, it is very questionable what endowments this ancient church had; and it is very notorious that the Church of Rome was found possessed of enormous wealth in lands, houses, and tithes when King Henry drove her away, all which lands, houses, and tithes, are shown by the very titledeeds themselves to have been given to the said Church of Rome by her own children for her own especial purposes, such as maintaining mass and praying souls out of purgatory, things which were abominations to the ancient British church, and which, till lately, the Church of England has protested were abominations to her. It would have been only common honesty in driving away the great scarlet woman, to have sent her money bags after her, especially polluted as they were by their very purposes. This is a little difficulty, but the Church of England says, the house was mine, and therefore I take all I find in it as mine, asking no questions.
Then again, the Church of England says, all churches and all ministers who cannot show an unbroken chain of episcopal ordination from the apostolic age, are no churches or ministers of the gospel at all. But say the impertinent Dissenters and Presbyterian Church of Scotland, you Church of England cannot show such an unbroken chain, or if you can, the Papacy has forged a great many of the links. But Church of England stoutly denies that she owes any authentic ordination to Rome at all; she says it has always existed and been continued from the ancient British church founded by St. Paul, through the period of the scarlet woman's usurpation, but independent of it. We imagine that here is another considerable difficulty, especially when one of her own bishops, Hoadly, tells us that. It bath not pleased God in his providence to keep up any proof of
the least probability of a regular uninterrupted succession, but there is a great appearance, and, humanly speaking, a certainty
of the contrary, that this succession hath been often interrupted. ".. This regular uninterrupted succession of persons qualified and
regularly ordained, is a matter impossible to be proved ;'* which another of her own bishops, and a great stickler for this very succession, has corroborated, stating that by the loss of the re
cords of the British churches we cannot draw down the succes'sion of bishops from the apostles' times; that of the Bishops of "London by Jocelyn of Furnes, not being worth mentioning.'+ These, we say, are difficulties, but they are not such difficulties as daunt a church with the law of England in its favour declaring it to be the true church, and therefore she asserts that she is the true church, and all others are not only spurious, but rob her of her rights. For example,
"The Reformation in Scotland was entirely a popular movement, and was opposed both by the court and the Romish hierarchy. John Knox appealed rather to the passions, than to the reason or the faith of the people, and easily enlisted them in a war of devastation on the sacred and conventual buildings. He established in 1560, an episcopal government under the name of superintendents, ministers, and readers, which last were to purchase for themselves a good degree, which shows that he intended them to be ecclesiastical officers. His intimate friend, Erskine, of Dun, and one of his superintendents, asserts, in a letter to the regent, “That a bishop or a superintendent is but one office, and where the one is the other is ;' to which office, he says, “pertains excommunication or admission (ordination) into spiritual cure and office.' Besides, provision was made for the support of the superintendents in all time coming ;' a form of speech which evidently indicated perpetuity. This form of superintendents, or titular bishops, continued until 1580, when Melvill succeeded in erecting the first Presbyterian court. But the Presbyterian system was not confirmed by parliament till 1595, thirty-five years after the establishment of Knox's titular Episcopacy, by the estates of parlia
• Preservative against the principles of the Nonjurors, p. 50.
+ Stillingfleet's Works, ii. 48.