« ForrigeFortsæt »
their idol-Nehushtan, or a mere piece of brass. When will Popery act thus towards those things of her own making, to which she offers incense? As it is admitted that God commands we should not bow down to nor worship any graven image, &c., why are Roman Catholics taught to do so ? “ The King's coin” is too fervently worshipped by all the world, we must acknowledge ; but we never heard of a Protestant worshipping “a sign-post.” The “ relative honour” spoken of, is obviously too often lost in the most unequivocal worship, and which it is calculated to induce, as every-day experience shows, in direct contradiction to the positive command of God*. Pius then quits the Scriptures for his common sense and reason.” Of these he is welcome to all the benefit they will afford him; and we will merely observe, that though the Protestant revere his lawful Sovereign, he would not be so absurd nor so wicked as to treat his effigy as a means of spiritual grace; neither would he " abuse the image of Christ,” whilst he spurned the idea of prostrating himself in supplication to the wood, stone, or painted canvass, which represented the Original.
As the “ relative honour" spoken of by the Pope has a totally distinct and opposite meaning to that which Protestants understand by the expression, it will be more clearly appreciated by an extract from the Roman Missal, used at the present time. In the adoration of the Cross on a Good Friday (which is the chief part of the office of the day), the Priest unveils the curtain before it by solemn degrees, saying, Ecce lignum crucis (Behold the wood of the Cross); the clergy and people respond, Venite adoremus (Come, let us adore). This anthem being repeated twice more till the whole Cross is uncovered, the Priest lays it down in a proper place, and all kneeling thrice on both knees, reverently approach to, and devoutly kiss the feet of the crucifix. Then (after certain hymns) is the following anthem :-" We ADORE thy Cross, O Lord, and we praise and glorify thy holy Resurrection ; for, by the woop of the Cross, the whole earth is filled with joy!” 'Such is the relative honour paid by Popery to her images, &c. which but for the above extract might not have been clearly understood by those who only pay their adoration to God. The above is also in the English Missals, and in defiance of “ We adore the Cross,” &c. there is a note attached, which says, when Papists “ kneel or prostrate themselves before a crucifix, it is Jesus Christ only whom they adore.”—This note is certainly necessary, or otherwise the people must have supposed that which is in itself so explicit was really intended so to be understood. But if this note be admitted as the real meaning of the adoration of the Cross, what then becomes of the positive assertion to the .contrary of that great Popish-made Saint, Thomas Aquinas, who says (3 Par. Qu. 2, Art. 4, in Cor. Conclusio), Crux Christi est adoranda adaratione latriæ. (The Cross of Christ is to be worshipped with divine adoration)-as the same angelic Doctor (so Papists call him) says of the images, &c. in the place quoted above.
do Thellast) paragraph is another of the Papal curiosities. T It is,impiously, we must believe, admitted, that the images of God The FATHER, or of the TRINITY, may be placed in Ronnish Churches, provided that these representations bear no likeness to what they are intended to represent, and which cannot be expressed in colours nor represented by any human workmanship!” This is “common sense and reason' with a vengeance !--As the Holy Ghost appeared in the palpable form of a Dove, Protestants so depict him, as they do our Saviour in his humanity; but this will not excuse Popery for her representations of God, the Almighty Father, under the figure of an old man, in direct defiance of his express com mands.'
Deut, iv. 15. “ Take good heed unto yourselves, for ye 10 Peug saw no manner of similitude [of God) in the day that the Lord spake unto you, lest ye corrupt yourselves, and make you a graven image, the similitude of any figure, the likeness of male or female," &c.
Isaiah xl. 18, 25. “ To whom then will ye liken God, or what likeness will ye compare unto him. To whom then will ye liken me, or shall I be equal ? saith the Holy One."
Habakkuk ii. 18, 19. “ What profiteth the graven image that the maker thereof hath graven it-the molten image, and a teacher of lies, that the maker of his work trusteth therein, to make dumb idols ? Woe unto him that saith to the wood, awake—to the dumb stone, arise, it shall teach! Behold, it is laid over with gold and silver, and there is no breath at all in the midst of it."
in 1 Acts xvii, 29. “Forasmuch then as we are the offspring of God, we ought not to think that the Godhead is like gold, or silver, or stone, graven by art, and man's device." 10
CRISTO) Rom. i. 23. “ Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools, and changed the glory of the uncorruptible into an image made like to corruptible man,” &c. recitlich
+1 These extracts are sufficient toe ipfove, e that), although Popery ice makes no difficulty of painting God the Father under the figure of a venerable old man," it would be a more difficult task than she could accomplish to prove, by the Soriptures, it is not an act of idolatry forbidden by God, his Prophets, and Apostles. : The Pope has, however, wadewa somewhat desperate attempt to do so in his reference to Daniel ; to whom, he says, the Almighty-appeared as a venerable old man. In speaking of his vision, the words of the Prophet (cha vii. 9) are these : “I beheld till the thrones were cast down, and the ANCIENT OF DAYS did sit, whose gart ment was white asa snow, and the hair of his head like the pure wool.”- The Pope's false quotation from this vision is all that can be offered for the impiety of attempting to represent the Almighty God!—There is not one Papist, capable of understanding, who would risk his life by drawing the picture of his king, were it made treason to do 'so; yet how many risk their souls, if the Scriptures are to be relied upon, by affecting to portray the likeness of God, and casting aside His holy word for the legends, ordinances, and vain unscriptural doctrines of Popery!
The origin of image-worship commenced in, as Mosheim says, “ a preposterous desire of imitating the Pagan rites, and' of blending them with the Christian worship, and that idle propensity which the generality of mankind have towards a gaudy and ostentatious religion ;”—and “many imagined
this worship drew down into the images the propitious presence of the saints or celestial beings they represented."
Platina says, that in the fifth century, Pope Sixtus III. pre10 vailed on the Emperor Valentinian to place upon the altar of SA Darin
a golden image of our Saviour, enriched with jewels. Gregory I. permitted them in churches, but condemned 'their worship ; in the two succeeding ages, they were set up or thrown down, according to the caprice of the reigning infallibility, when (A. D. 712) Pope Constantine decreed that there
should be great adoration paid to them, in opposition to the Emperor Phillipicus, who had ordered them to be removed from the churches, and whom this Pontiff caused to be condemned and excommunicated as an apostate to true religiona revolution followed, and the Emperor lost his crown. Similar disputes and results were carried on between the Greeks and Latins. Leo, the Isaurian, prohibited image-worship in 726, Pope Gregory II. enforced it; and thus tumult, excommunication, and the sword, settled these disputes, whilst some of the most learned of the Prelates wrote with all their force against the idolatrous worship which the most violent of the Popes maintained : hence, in the ninth century, through the exertions of Claudius, Bishop of Turin, that city and its neighbourhood " was less infected with superstition than the other parts of Europe.” Disputes on this subject continued until the eleventh century respecting images which, however, all parties of those who worshipped them agreed in declaring to possess wonderful miraculous powers. In the golden age of Popery (which was the iron age of ignorance, as some of her own writers have been compelled to admit, but which those of the present day would fain deny)—the images, crosses, &c. chatted familiarly with their favourites :-one crucifix approved of the writings of Thomas ; a second addressed Bridget; a third conferred (in Latin) with Bernard ; a fourth talked to Francis, saying, “Go, and build up my house;" a fifth to Dunstan (deciding in favour of his argument that the Priests should not marry), &c. &c. &c. Images of stone, brass, &c. have been (quite) as eloquent as others of wood'; but as we do not now often hear of their verbal communications in England, and thinking it would be a loss of tine to repeat what they used to say, we will conclude with Father Crasset's opinion of their claims to regard:-- God hath in every age, and still continues to work innumerable miracles by the images of Saints, and especially by those of the Virgin."
CHAP. X. +OF INDULGENCES,
Not leave to commit sin, or pardon for sins to come: but only a releasing, by the power of the keys committed to the Church, the debt of temporal punishment, which may remain due upon account i of our sins, after the sins themselves, as to the guilt and eternal
punishment, have been already remitted by repentance and confession.
Can you prove from scripture, that there is a punishment often due upon account of our sins, after the sins themselves have been remitted d?
Yes, this evidently appears in the case of King David, 2 Sam. xii. "1" where, although the prophet Nathan, upon his repentance, tells him, 7. ver. 13, “ The Lord hath put away thy sin," yet he denounces unto him
many terrible punishments, ver. 10, 11, 12, 14, which should be inflicted by reason of this sin, which accordingly afterwards ensued.
What is the faith of your Church touching Indulgences ?
It is comprised in these words of our profession of faith: I afirm that the power of indulgences was left by Christ in the Church, and that the use of them is most wholesome to christian people.
Upon what scripture do you ground this?
The power of granting indulgences was left by Christ to the Church; Matt. xvi. 19, “ I will give unto thee the keys of the kingdom of heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt bind on earth, shall be bound in heaven; and whatsoever thou shalt loose on earth, shall be loosed in heaven.” And we have an instance in Scripture of St. Paul's granting an indulgence to the Corinthian whom he had put under penance for incest : 2 Cor. ii. 10, “ to whom ye forgive any thing” (he speaks of the incestuous sinner whom he had desired them not to receive), “ I forgive also; for if I forgive anything, to whom I forgave it, for your sakes forgave I it in the person of Christ;" that is,
by the power and authority received from him. « What do you mean by Indulgences ?” is a very plain question ; but before we are enlightened upon this “ mystery," we are first informed what (as it is asserted) it does not mean--a somewhat peculiar method of Popish reasoning. However, these indulgences are, if we properly comprehend the intent of the invention, a sort of ready-reckoners, framed for the purpose of striking a balance in the punishments due to those who keep running accounts of criine with the men who assert that they alone possess the power of giving a receipt in full to Sin, whatever be the amount of her iniquity.