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Lord.” And “ it is so after my judgment; and I think also that I have the spirit of God,” &c.—1 Cor. vii. 6, 10, 12, 25, 40. Again :
2 Cor. i. 24. “ Not for that we have dominion over your Faith, but are helpers of your joy. For by faith [i. e. by your own faith) ye stand.”
Gal. i. 8. “ But, though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other Gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed.”
? Now, the twelve New Articles being directly opposed to the Gospel of CHRIST, Papists would do well to contrast them with that Gospel, if they deem the salvation of their own souls worth a consideration.
But, knowing as we do that the New Testament is, by the Popish clergy, cast aside for the introduction of their own compositions (such as we have already quoted), this being their rule of faith * in the Church of Rome, accordingly, the Church having shown by what tenure she holds her infallibility, we now beg to show, by her own positive assertion, that she declares she is not INFALLIBLE ! We are not, however, at present, going back to those days when so impious an assumption first struck alarm in the minds of all good men; that we shall show hereafter. But we are about to appeal to no less an authority than the DECLARATION already noticed, signed by thirty Popish Bishops, on the 26th of January, 1826_and from which, whilst we urge it in proof of our assertions, our readers will draw the most positive
In Article 11 of the above “ Declaration,” these gentlemen (the Popish Bishops) declare UPON OATH, “ That it is not an article of the (Roman) Catholic faith, neither are they thereby required to believe that the Pope is infallible.” This Declaration is, we think, as plainly expressed as the assertion is positively made in the “Grounds of Faith,” quoted above of the infallibility? However, as Popery cannot err, the Church of Rome, it is evident, has merely to say (as we have shown her clergy acknowledge) that
* The rule of its Faith " is the teaching authority of the successors of the Apostles.”—Faith of Catholics, &c. Berington and Kirke, 1813.
Vice is virtue, virtue vice;
Lies are truths, and truths lies, And, such is the Popish doctrine of her infallibility, all good Papists are as fully convinced of her miraculous powers in this respect, as in her evident tact in conjuring a wafer, made of a little flour, and a glass of wine, into the real body and blood of our Redeemer. We really beg pardon of the Roman Catholic laity; but if that which is contemptible be not contemptuously treated—if falsehood upon falsehood so bunglingly jumbled together by. “ infallibility,” as to oblige one moiety of itself to contradict the other—if such puerile efforts to deceive are to be treated with gravity, let the Romish clergy first show some better scriptural “ Grounds' for the authority they have usurped over the minds of their followers than we have yet met with; and above all, let them, as we do, prefer proof to assertion, and fact to sophistry—we will then meet them as gravely as they please. But this will never suit the Church of Rome; HER favourite children must give up their inward and outward senses :—Reason first, and then, as a matter of course, seeing, hearing, feeling, taste, and smell ;—all must be sacrificed at the shrine of infallibility in the court or Church of Rome; but whether this Infallible Church is the Court, the Pope, a General Council, or all these together, the Popish writers cannot, nor ever will, agree*.
Some place the infallibility in the Pope, as “heir and successor of St. Peter ;'' but, as so many Popes have been deposed and slaughtered for their heresies by other Pupes—the successful one always (pro tem.) acknowledged orthodox—there are others who place the “infallibility” in a general council as superior to the Pope; a third party define it to be ludged only in the Pope and a council together; but as this arrangement would defeat the dicta of many councils, which are called general, and would split others into fractions (as in the cases when the Pope or his
Sin is the greatest error of any church ; but popery has the most deeply involved herself by (among her other absurdities) her claim to infallibility in this her notoriously corrupt state—applying to her Church whatever is said of the Church of Christ in its perfect, glorious, and triumphant state. These are assumptions that have been often lamented by the pious and well-informed of her own communion. The Church of Rome certainly requires infallibility to prove her imperfections perfections; otherwise, the most illiterate of her followers would tremble for their salvation. But when “CHRIST shall gather out of his Kingdom all things that offend, and them which do iniquity,” (Matt. xiii, 41,) then, and not till then, must man seek impeccability on earth.
SECT. IV.—That the Church of Christ is Catholic or Universal.
Not only, that the Church of Christ shall always be known by the name of CATHOLIC, by which she is called in the Creed; but that she shall also be called Catholic or Universal, by being the church of all ages, and of all nations.
How do you prove that the true Church of Christ must be the church of all ages.
Because the true Church of Christ must be that which had its beginning from Christ; and, as he promised, was to continue to the end of the world. See Sect. I. and III.
How do you prove that the true Church of Christ must be the church of all nations?
legate has withdrawn from them, declaring them no longer lawful councils but “schismatical conventicles," as was said of the councils of Constance, and Basil or Basle)—and because, among many other reasons assigned, human passions not consistent with infallibility have generally influenced these “infallible councilsfor these and other reasons a fourth party place it neither in Pope nor council separately nor together, but in the church militant,-i. e. in the whole body of her followers who serve and obey her, wherever or however dispersed throughout the world!
“When the Council of Constance bad determined that the cup should be taken from the laity, the Bohemians were so much dissatisfied, that the Council of Basle restored it to them, Which council was infallible? Which decree is to be undoubtedly received? The Council of Basle, in 1431, decreed that a general council is above the Pope ; but the Lateran Council, in 1546, declared this decree to have been the source of corruption and abuse. The Council of Constantinople forbade the worship or reverence paid to images; the second Nicene Council enjoined it; the Council of Frankfort prohibited it; and it was finally re-established by the Council of Trent.”—Bp. BLOMFIELD's Letter to Mr. Butler, p. 21.
From many texts of scripture, in which the true Church of Christ is always represented as a numerous congregation spread through the world. Gen. xxii. 18. * In thy seed shall all the nations of the earth be blessed." Ps. ii. 8. “Ask of me, and I will give thee the heathens for thine inheritance; and the uttermost parts of the earth for thy possession.” Ps. xxii. 27. “ All the ends of the world shall remember and turn unto the Lord, and all the kindreds of the nations shall worship before thee." Isa. xlix. 6. “It is a light thing that thou shouldst be my servant to raise up the tribes of Jacob~I will also give thee for a light to the Gentiles, that thou mayest be my salvation unto the end of the earth.” Isa. liv. 1, 2, 3.
Sing, O barren thou that didst not bear, break forth into singing, and cry aloud thou that didst not travail with child; for more are the children of the desolate, than the children of the married wife, saith the Lord. Enlarge the place of thy tent, and let them stretch forth the curtains of thine habitation: spare not, lengthen thy cords and strengthen thy stakes: for thou shalt break forth on the right hand and on the left; and thy seed shall inherit the Gentiles, &c.” Malachi i. 11. “ From the rising of the sun even to the going down of the same, my name shall be great among the Gentiles.” See Isa. ii. 2, 3; Micah iv. 1, 2; Daniel ii. 31, &c.
" That the Church of Christ is Catholic or universal," we readily admit; but protest against the Popish Church so calling herself, whilst so many of her own doctrines are arrayed against those of true Christianity. Protestants pray every day for the Catholic Church in their liturgy; but Roman Catholic or Papist are synonimous terms, which distinguish that class from every denomination of Christians whatsoever. We will show, presently, how they came to be so called, and how their Church obtained that portion of universality she possesses ; but we must, in accordance with our plan, first notice the “scriptural proofs” adduced in support of the claim.
Until the third question, we are referred by retrogression to what the Pope had already told us in the first and third sections; and to which our readers can turn if they please. We then come to a line extracted from Genesis :—“In thy seed shall all the nations of the earth be blessed." We cannot see how this blessing to Abraham has anything to do
with Popery; but think we can perceive a systematic disinclination to give any cause, as stated by the prophets, for the peculiar favours of God towards his people: and this, it naturally strikes us, arises on the part of the Romish Church, from the caution necessary to preserve her very existence; since, were she to state the reasons and conditions assigned and commanded, it would place her own practice in direct contrast with the commands of the SUPREME. Thus, (as will be proved) when Popes were heading armies and excommunicating each other, as they were opposed to the Gospel of Christ, and as it would not be for the interest of their Churches to touch upon such unpleasant subjects, so would it appear contrary to Popish practice, to give the reasons and conditions assigned for God's promised grace. When the Almighty made the promise to Abraham, he added, “because thou hast obeyed my voice.” The Pope, no doubt, had his own cogent reasons for omitting the latter part of the verse. The next text applied (Ps. ii. 8.) tells of the Kingdom of Christ, but not of a Pope—although the inferences of the latter, in respect to his title to “the heathens for his inheritance; and the uttermost parts of the earth for his possession ;' and, (Psa. xii. 27.) that “ all the kindreds of the nations” ought to worship him, are too flimsy to be mistaken. The passage from Isaiah (xlix. 6.) is also a promise of Christ—not of a Pope; as are the other texts. What these extracts have to do with the “universality” of the Church of Rome, we really cannot imagine.
We have already said, that there can be no dispute among Christians as to the universality of the Church of CHRIST; and we have proved, according to Christ's own word, that this Church is always to be distinguished by her“ good works.” The Pope, however, without hesitation, declares that his is the Church promised in the Old Testament; and, as he has thought fit to call her the “ Mother and Mistress