Analysis of Dr. Newman's Apologia Pro Vita Sua: with a glance at the history of Popes, Councils, and the Church.

J. N. Darby.

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After this Dr. N. went abroad. Here it was he had the strong impression that he was called to reform Anglicanism. Let us retrace his history thus far. He was converted, he tells us, at fifteen. He believed, too, that the inward conversion of which he was conscious (and of which he still is more certain than that he has hands and feet) would last into the next life, and that he was elected to eternal glory (58). This was a beginning of divine faith, a great change of thoughts. The influence and books, he tells us, were of the Calvinistic school. He, humanly speaking, almost owed his soul to one good man, whom he does not name. But all the special truth which wrought this in 1822, save the fact of heaven and hell, divine favour and divine wrath of the justified and unjustified, which alone took root in his mind, did not remain with him many years. In 1832 he came under very different influences. On reading Sumner he gave up all his remaining Calvinism. He never believed in reprobation. From Dr. Hawkins he received the doctrine of tradition; from the Rev. W. James, apostolic succession; from Butler's Analogy, he learnt to rest his faith in probability,* not on divine testimony; from Whately, to think and use his reason, and see with his own eyes, and believe in the existence of the church as a proper corporate body. Keble added faith and love in man to probability, to give it force, leading him to authority; Froude led him in his feelings towards Rome, and hatred of the Reformers (53-73). This brought him to Alexandria, or at least co-operated with it; for the dates mingle at the close of this history together. There we have now found him, and going abroad to rest himself after his labours in this ante-Nicene study, his wild Platonism in full blow.

176 There was need of a second Reformation. Who was to do it? Here comes the turning-point of Dr. N.'s life. I do not doubt the direct agency of Satan on a self-confident mind; but I must trace it in its human manifestation. "I was exchanging my tutorship for foreign countries and an unknown future. I naturally was led to think that some inward changes, as well as some larger course of action, was coming upon me (81). At this moment, while waiting at Whitchurch for the mail, he wrote the verses about his guardian angel,

"Are these the tracks of some unearthly friend?"

and goes on to speak of the "vision that haunted" him (80). Why, when jaded with study, and obliged to go abroad for his health, was it natural to look for some larger course of action? There is a natural, though unconfessed, sentiment of force in every active mind; but in the Christian, suppressed by the sense of his own nothingness, that without Christ he can do nothing, and the principle of obedience, than which nothing is more humble, and of conscience, which makes our own path being right of the first importance. Dr. N. had this confidence; he thought of acting on others — a larger course of action. I quite believe he was afterwards unaware of the influence he exercised on young men; that is very often the case.

{*It is a singular effect of this reasoning on probability, and I must add of the Aristotelian teaching of Oxford, that in this famous and able book to which Dr. N. refers (Butler's Analogy), it is stated, that the natural propensities of man must continue in heaven, as happiness cannot be without virtue, nor virtue without trial and exercise. Such is the fruit of ignorance of redemption. Bishop Butler's words are these: "This way of putting the matter supposes particular affections" (or propensions as he calls them) "to remain in a future state, which it is scarce possible to avoid supposing." And he is speaking of "the danger finite creatures are in from the very nature of propensions or particular affections." (Part 1, chap. 5, on "Moral Discipline.)}

177 But the sick man, filled with his primeval mystery and inclined towards Rome, having left all the forms of truth that had been the means of his conversion, was looking for a second Reformation, and, through a "vision," a larger course of action for himself. His journey completes this picture. He was not much among the Roman Catholics. His imagination was at work on new scenes naturally enough. "The sight of so many great places, venerable shrines, and noble churches, much impressed my imagination," he tells us. He heard singing in a country church at six o'clock, and his heart thus also was touched (100). Now, a religious congregation singing, when heard from without, has this effect — touches deeply the religious imagination where it exists. It could not have been anything really spiritual in his mind; for he did not know what they were singing. In his weary days at Palermo, "I was not ungrateful for the comfort which I had received in frequenting the churches, nor did I ever forget it." Then again, "her zealous maintenance of the doctrine and rule of celibacy, which I recognized as apostolic, and her faithful agreement with antiquity in so many points besides which were clear to me, was an argument, as well as a plea, in favour of the great church of Rome. Thus I learned to have tender feelings towards her, but still my reason was not affected at all" (p.100).

Now you will remark, as I said at the beginning, all is sensuous here, what acts on the imagination; no question of truth and grace, no holiness, unless celibacy be taken for it, which he believed apostolic — not, observe, self-devotedness, when given of God, which is apostolic, but as a rule; which is so false, that it shews Dr. N. was wholly governed by imagination. Not only does the apostle say, the elder is to be the husband of one wife, having his children subject in all gravity, and let us know that Peter and the Lord's brethren were married though he and Barnabas were not; but in the council of Nice, which Dr. N. had been just studying, it was formally refused to be made a rule, though it had acquired great influence, and was resisted by Paphnutius, an unmarried bishop, as a snare. What its enforcement in the eleventh century, by Hildebrand (though never carried through till the end of the thirteenth), produced is well known. I may speak of it farther on, when I come to speak of the causes of Protestantism. A man must have been wholly blinded by imagination, or Satan, to say celibacy was, as a rule, apostolic. Even the Roman body holds it for a mere matter of discipline; the Greek requires that priests should be married — only bishops not, if I do not mistake.

178 His imagination was fully ripened towards Rome; the primitive church, that is, not the scripture or first, but the ante-Nicene church* was certainly right, the Anglican useless, if it was not the same; he was tenderly turned towards Rome, as to his heart, and, at any rate, Anglicanism needed a second reformation; he had no tenderness, he tells, for it. Rome was a great church, his heart with her; his habits, no doubt, not overcome, he might hope to defend Anglicanism, but it was dreadfully bad. The whole was a foregone conclusion.

{*We have no accounts, I may say, of the church from apostolic men to Justin Martyr (140).}

What was the work he was going to do? He had entire, thorough confidence in himself — confidence unrepressed by grace. The motto chosen from Homer by Froude, shewing his own feeling, he adds, too, shews this transparently, "You shall know the difference now that I am back again." Nor does he conceal from himself what I am proving — "I began to think I had a mission" (82).

Nor was it an uncertainty. He visited Monsignore Wiseman. He wished they should visit Rome a second time. He saw plainly enough his state, as he did afterwards what was going on at Oxford (p. 109). Dr. N. replied to him with great gravity, "We have a work to do in England"; pleased to pander to Romanism, and be in Monsignore's good graces. The state of his mind was shewn; when sick, he cried, "I shall not die, I shall not die; I have not sinned against light." No peaceful conscience, no rest in Christ: the latent conviction he speaks of, of not being at rest, ceased to be latent when death seemed to be there. The pressure of darkness on a troubled conscience, used, I doubt not, by the enemy; but still, conscience, which, if not settled between him and God, Satan would drive him to quiet in his own way. He was sobbing bitterly, while waiting to leave Palermo, and replied to the inquiry of his servant, "I have a work to do in England." Now this uneasiness, if not a bad conscience in a general way (of which, of course, I can say nothing, and is not here so presented), was a bad conscience, which, not possessing Christ for its own rest in Him, looked to the church, because it had not rest; and from his previous studies, feeling he did not possess that, and had resisted impressions and feelings which led him to Romanism, broke out in bitter uneasiness when thus ill. But remark, no destruction of self-confidence, no turning to Christ in lowliness of conscience and heart. He turned to self. "I could only answer, 'I have a work to do.'" This work he was doing afterwards.

179 The rest was merely a process, a question of time. He hated Protestantism, he loved popery, though not agreeing to it. Anglicanism was all wrong, even if it were on the foundation. He pretended to set about and correct it. Romanism was the only certainly right thing in existence. The primitive church had been right and lovely — the only right thing now was Romanism; he hoped to get Anglicanism on right ground, but he had no tenderness for her. And now it is I find the excessive moral levity of Dr. Newman's state, of which I have spoken, come out in full blaze. It was no search for the truth, as such, for himself; he had not accepted all Rome's doctrines, but neither had he when he joined her; but she was the only right church in his eyes: he was looking for the church of his imagination, not for truth.* He did not believe transubstantiation the day he joined popery, more than twenty years before. He says so. After joining Rome as infallible, he accepted it on authority.

{*I say, the church of his imagination; he says, popery is a religion — Protestantism is a religion; the via media is only on paper (113).}

180 See what a state this involves. There were two real religions, Protestantism and popery. The former he hated. Seeking communion with Protestants was the last blow to Anglicanism (182). He counted them heretics. Rome, when abroad, he held as undeniably the most exalted church in the whole world, manifesting in all the truth and beauty of the Spirit, highmindedness, majesty, and the calm consciousness of power. Anglicanism, bishops and all, was at best as a set of unruly boys — Trojans, who would know the difference when he came back. Hence, afterwards, when they trench on his via media he threatens them all. There was a limit to forbearance (178, 180, 183, 184, 200). Anglicanism still remained to be tried. He looked to "that future of the Anglican church which was to be a new birth of the ancient religion"; a system would be rising up (143). Thus inclined to Rome, hating Protestantism, Anglicanism being nothing really, he set about to work. Did he ascertain the truth before he set to work? In no wise. I do not mean that he did not like the ante-Nicene church. No doubt he did. But had he searched out the grounds of truth, or truth itself, before he acted? In no wise. Antiquity was his only ground. "Taking antiquity," he says, referring back to this early period (p. 194), not the existing church, as the oracle of truth (never, mark, the Word), "I thought that the Church of England was substantially founded upon them" [the Fathers] (102). Had he searched them thoroughly? Not at all. "I did not know all that the Fathers had said, but I felt that even when their tenets happened to differ from the Anglican, no harm could come of reporting them. I said out what I was clear they had said; I spake vaguely and imperfectly what I thought they had said, or what some of them had said. Anyhow, no harm could come of bending the crooked stick the other way in the process of straightening it; it was impossible to break it." Thus Anglicanism was but a stick to be straightened. He set about reforming, rebuilding the church, getting a church de facto of flesh and bones, as he says — held the Fathers to be authority, yet did not know all that they had said. Can there be conceived, on so solemn a subject, a man acting with more self-confidence and more levity? Nor does he deny it. "I never had the staidness or dignity necessary for a leader. I had a lounging, free and easy way of carrying things on" (105). Now this is true; but think of a man saying it of his whole status as to the church of God, and in the things in which he was acting as one who had a mission to reform the church, and rebuild it in its beauty as of old.

181 He admits (104) he was widely spreading his principles, not recognizing the hold he had over young men. He laughed when a man innocently thought he meant sacrament when he said the sacrifice of the Eucharist; and did not give himself the trouble of answering it. Accordingly, he tells us, when Dr. Pusey joined the movement, he (Dr. P.) saw that there ought to be more sobriety, more gravity, more careful pains, more sense of responsibility in the tracts and in the whole movement. It was through him the character of the tracts was changed (508). He, however grieved, and, as I judge, justly, though I may not agree with all his views,* and Mr. Keble, in the sense of that responsibility, have as yet remained in Anglicanism.

{*I think the whole Catholic system, Roman or Anglican, wrong in confounding "the body" of Ephesians 1 with "the house" of Ephesians 2, and attributing to the house now the privileges of the body.}

And that he acted in this lounging easy way was so truly the case, that while quite settled in what he was seeking to establish — "a visible church with sacraments and rites which are the channels of invisible grace" — he tells us that he did not know what he aimed at. "I thought this was the doctrine of scripture, of the early church, and of the Anglican church." Of this he never ceased to be certain: but "in 1834 and the following years I put this ecclesiastical doctrine on a broader basis after reading Laud, Bramhall, Stillingfleet, and other Anglican divines on the one hand, and after prosecuting the study of the Fathers on the other." Now, that he held a doctrine immaturely no one can blame; we have all done so. But that he should set about to reform and rebuild the church with a special mission, though he founded it on the Fathers, with his views unformed, seems to me, I confess, intolerable self-sufficiency and levity. "When I began the Tracts for the Times, I rested the main doctrines of which I am speaking upon scripture, St. Ignatius' epistles, and on the Anglican Prayer Book" (96). The visible church on scripture, sacraments and sacramental rites on the Prayer Book, the episcopal system on St. Ignatius. Now the scripture clearly teaches a visible church, and thus is authority that there ought to be one. As to the fact, it is all around us. But why not search scripture as to what it ought to be? I believe it is sadly fallen; but why not go to Paul, and John, and Peter, to know what it ought to be, instead of Ignatius? And note the excessive inconsistency after all: he is going to build a right church, because Anglicanism was not such; and yet he takes the Prayer Book of Anglicans as the rule to prove his point on the matter he was anxious about, although he admits "that the Anglican church must have a ceremonial, a ritual, and a fulness of doctrine and devotion which this had not at present" (204). Was this because it was right? No; "if it were to compete with the Roman church with any prospect of success." Why so? Because he liked that system, not because it could be any authority truth; for the system he was seeking to change. It suited him, the Articles did not. And they were to be interpreted according to Catholic teaching, not the opinion of the framers. "Catholicism" (by which he then meant Romanism), he tells us plainly later, "was the real scope and issue of the movement." And why does he take Ignatius? And why do all who love the system Dr. N. has followed? Why did I myself delight in it, found my thoughts on him? Because he already liked and had adopted the system found in his published writings, not from any real, ascertained authority in Ignatius.

182 Dr. N. must have well known, that since Ussher and Daille they have been called in question; that there are two recensions, besides confessedly spurious letters, one enormously interpolated, the other shorter; so that though defended by learned men, as a document they were of questionable authority. Since then it has been, I think I may say, ascertained — I do not say all acquiesce in it — that five out of the eight letters are wholly spurious, and the three remaining ones, even in the short recension, interpolated, and the passages in favour of unity, which Dr. N. delighted in, are all, save one, false and spurious; for you must know that these pious frauds were the custom of this vaunted primitive church. There was one Leucas, or Lucius, who had quite a manufactory of them. I do not know that it was he who tampered with Ignatius. There were numbers of false Gospels* and acts of the apostles, and that not only by heretics, but by pious people, and this very early indeed.

{*A pretty copious list of these pious frauds, so-called, is in Baronius, 1, 302. The Gospels have been collected by Fabricius and Theile.}

Dr. Newman scarcely even excuses himself here; if he does, it is only for guilt in his vain confidence, so far as he had strong persuasions in 1832, which he has since given up. I do not blame him for giving up what he thought wrong. I blame him for lightly pretending to reform and rebuild the Anglican body, that is, to form a church as it should be, when he had not searched the grounds on which he did it; when he knew he was not at rest but on journey, as he has told us, and doing it in a free and easy way, and, I must say, with some effrontery, telling us that he had "a lounging, free and easy way" in the matter. Was this God-fearing? The more his book is read through, the more it will be seen. Yet he attaches immense importance to his movement. He says, with singular self-complacency, "Great acts take time. At least I felt this in my own case" (206). He sought, he tells us elsewhere, to go by reason, not sentiment — here, that all the logic in the world would not make him move faster; God does not save people by logic. This when people shewed him the evident and necessary consequences of his principles. More of this when his pleas as to his honesty are considered. I do not suppose he was a concealed Roman Catholic before he professed to be so, in the least; but he did know long before where all was tending, and knew he was leading others there, and continued to do so while unsettled, and, full of confidence in himself, charged others as authors of it for resisting him. Yet it did lead him there.

183 But what I insist on now is the moral levity of teaching without his mind having arrived at any conclusions. He says (p. 111), "Alas! it was my portion for whole years to remain, without any satisfactory basis for my religion profession, in a state of moral sickness, neither able to acquiesce in Anglicanism, nor able to go to Rome." Now these are the very years in which he was labouring as having a special mission, influencing diligently others, taking the future of Anglicanism and of souls on his own shoulders. He had confidence in his cause, despised every rival system of doctrine, had a thorough contempt for the evangelical system. Owing to this confidence, there was a mixture of fierceness and sport in his behaviour. If he had brought men on to a certain point, if they stopped, he did not care; he liked to make them preach the truth without knowing it, and encouraged them so to do. "I was not unwilling to draw an opponent on step by step to the brink of some intellectual absurdity, and to leave him to get back as he could." He speaks of the imprudence and wantonness into which his absolute confidence in his cause led him (92-94). I understand this state of mind in a restless spirit confident in its views, but which has found no rest for itself — excited and uneasy, "moral sickness," as he admits. But is it God-fearing? Is it God-fearing to teach others and set the church right in such a state? Can we be surprised at the result? And what must we think of the result such a course in such a state of mind led to? He tells us that, through the storm on Tract go, he had already before lost full confidence in himself. He had confidence in the apostolic movement; "but how was I any more to have absolute confidence in myself?" (132). Did he cease to go on? No; the movement was out of his hands. But on his views he was obstinate, and bearded the bishops. This is clear: he had had absolute confidence in himself. He got completely bewildered in reading Bellarmine and the Anglican divines. This had no tendency whatever to harass and perplex him. It was a matter of convictions, not of proofs (146). But he had been teaching with absolute confidence in himself, without having ever really ascertained the difference, or found solid ground on it.

184 In 1839, the fact that Leo's judgment had settled the council of Chalcedon and the monophysite question upset his via media, and shewed that Rome was now on the ground of Leo in the fifth century, the Protestants on that of Eutychians and Monophysites, that is, heretics.* Here he owns that he had the habitual notion that he was "on journey," had not found his ultimate rest. Yet it had never led him to distrust his convictions. Before and after, he was restlessly teaching others. I feel I need not go farther. The time of his activity, the time of his influence, was the time of his own "moral sickness" and unformed views.

{*Dr. N. very conveniently forgets that Pope Leo, a very able man, who really founded the power of the Papacy, forbade that doctrine to be put in the creed, though he admits it, which makes Dr. N. himself now hold the Greeks to be heretics for not holding. And I may add that a general council, admitted such, forbade positively any additional articles to be added to the creed. That is what Dr. N. calls development.}

I turn for a moment to Protestantism. Mr. N.'s position, on his return from abroad with a mission, was this — the Roman church was the most exalted church in the whole world (161), certainly catholic. Protestantism he hated: it was heretical, save in England; so that to receive a Protestant without abjuration of error was subsequently sufficient almost, if not quite, to oblige a person to leave the Establishment, and was what finally led to it (182). It shattered his faith in Anglicanism. Anglicanism rested only on paper, to be formed by himself by his mission. As it stood, was of questionable catholicity; could be so only by interpreting her Articles as no one else in the world would. There was no motive for keeping aloof from Rome, but the pope's being Antichrist (101); which for my part, however anti-Christian he may be, I do not believe.

It appears Rome's being the great whore, drunk with the blood of the saints, was nothing. This he got over by its being the spirit of the city acting on the church (161). He was determined to clear Romanism. Transubstantiation he did not believe; but Mr. Palmer held that all the decrees of Trent might have a Catholic sense. I recall his own excuses. But Rome's being the harlot drunk with blood, transubstantiation, purgatory, the worship of the virgin and the saints, indulgences, the repeated sacrifice of the mass as an expiation for the sins of the living and the dead, the supremacy and infallibility of the pope — none of these, or other principles and dogmas of Rome was any ground for separation from it.

185 It is astonishing how little hold truth had on his mind, how little prominence it had with him; a very peculiar phenomenon. Being disposed towards Rome is nothing uncommon or surprising; but souls are kept, often almost unconsciously, by some truth which guards them. I was, especially by Hebrews 9 and 10. But truth, it is evident (I do not say mere dogma, common to all) he never cared about. He says the English opposition to Romanism was caused by political motives in Henry the Eighth's time, than which nothing can be more unfounded. He burnt people for giving up his Six Articles, which were essentially popish, though he would not accept the pope's supremacy. The Reformation in England was set on foot by Edward VI, as to authority; but by saints, of whom Henry burned many, as to truth.

But I shall shew what brought in Protestantism, if it is to be used as a name. I have no doubt there were many defects, and could not but be, in the order that was set up. The mere name is nothing. It came from an act of German Electors at the Diet of Spires protesting against the recess of that Diet, passed only by a majority of votes when they had left, which they held to be illegal. The Reformed are not called Protestants abroad. But Protestantism, used as a popular name, was the protest of the conscience, given energy to by faith, against the most horrible system of iniquity that ever withered and overwhelmed the human conscience. It was not merely negative; there was the positive assertion of common fundamental dogmas (this was the very object of the Confession of Augsburg, because this negative character was charged upon it); and articles were added, which are rejected by Dr. Newman and his party — such as justification by faith, the two sacraments, and other anti-Romanist ones; as the counter doctrine was also maintained in the decrees of the Council of Trent refuting formally this teaching; and, further, the authority of the word of God maintained, of the books of which the Council of Trent has given an undeniably false list.

186 It was not simply the right of private judgment in the modern sense. The direct responsibility of each conscience to God, as contrasted with the domination of priests, was maintained, and rightly, as between man and man — not the right simply, but the obligation to judge, was maintained; but it was the public confession of positive truth which characterized Protestantism. Each local body framed its own profession of faith. The authority of the word of God was asserted. The right of every man to judge scripture, or have his own thoughts where God has revealed His name, never entered into the thoughts of the Reformers. The right of private judgment, as often now talked of, whether by infidels, who desire it, or Romanists, who condemn it, is essentially and absolutely incompatible with the absolute authority of scripture, which was the Protestant principle. The question was, What was to have authority-scripture, or the clergy and tradition? The duty to judge by scripture was asserted, and rightly.* It was the putting away of evil, and the teaching of positive faith, and the authority of the word of God, dogmatically and historically in this order. It broke out, under Luther, by resisting indulgences, the profligate and shameless sale of which was destroying all morality, and even the parochial care of the priests.

{*My object is not here controversy, but Dr. Newman's book, or it is easy to shew that Romanism has no sure ground of authority, which the Protestant has. As to private judgment, it is all clap-trap. The Romanist calls on me to judge Protestantism, as much as I do him to judge popery, and to judge that he is right.}

I repeat, while truth was promulgated, and Luther's action the fruit of his having learnt the truth, the first spring of action was the revolt of the Christian conscience against the state of the professing Christian church. I shall give some account of the state of that church, that it may be seen how far this revolt of conscience was well grounded.

187 And here I feel I am on painful, and, for any Christian, dangerous ground. It is, and ought to be, painful to rake up evil, especially in that which bears the name of Christ. There is danger of failing in that article of charity, "rejoiceth not in iniquity." I admit, I trust I feel, both the painfulness and the danger. But with the pretensions which are current, and the deceitful statements of morbid imaginations as to the holiness of the Romish body, it becomes necessary that those likely to be deceived should know the truth. Not only is "corruptio optimi pessima corruptio," but the corruption of Rome was in itself worse than any corruption that ever existed. I shall state from authentic sources, and Roman Catholic sources, what the state of things really was, and shew how early it began. I have verified the statements in the authorities quoted except two — Mansi's "Councils," being inaccessible to me, and Nic. Clemangis' works not in my library. I have only Hardouin's "Councils," which does not reproduce the document; but there is no doubt it is authentic and correct. I refer to the letter of Pope Alexander V, quoted farther on.

Even in the apostles' days Paul complains that all seek their own, not the things of Jesus Christ; Jude, that evil men had crept in unawares, turning the grace of God into lasciviousness. But then there was apostolic power to repress and correct; but Paul knew that after his decease grievous wolves would enter in, yea, that of themselves perverse men would arise. Peter assures us that the time was come for judgment to begin at the house of God.

We have seen that it had become, in the end of the second and in the third century, a common habit for the clergy, under the pretext of purity — unmarried — to live and sleep with unmarried persons, consecrated also to celibacy as above all passion — above that evil matter into which pure souls were descended; for such was the doctrine of these mighty Alexandrians of which Dr. N. was enamoured.

Hermas, to whom I referred amongst others, alludes to it thus (the shepherd had commended him to the virgins who were there): "I said, 'Where shall I tarry?' They replied, 'Thou shalt sleep with us — as a brother, not as a husband; for thou art our brother, and we are ready henceforth to dwell with thee: for thou art very dear to us.' Howbeit I was ashamed to continue with them. But she that seemed to be chiefest amongst them embraced me, and began to kiss me, and so did the rest. When the evening came on, I would forthwith have gone home; but they withheld me, and suffered me not to depart; therefore I continued with them that night near the same tower; so they spread their linen garments on the ground, and placed me in the middle; nor did they anything else — only prayed."

188 Origen complains bitterly of the great multitude of Christians who did not trouble themselves about divine things; and if they attended divine service were entirely indifferent to it when there.

I add Cyprian's account (A.D. 251). He is accounting for the Decian persecution, and says it is only too light a chastisement — "exploratio potius quam persecutio videretur." All devoted to increasing their patrimony; no devoted religion in the priests, no upright faithfulness in ministers, no piety in works, no discipline in morals. Men's beards false, women's faces painted, eyes adulterated from what God had made them, their hair falsely coloured — cunning frauds to deceive the hearts of the simple. Artful deceit (subdolae voluntatis) in circumventing brethren, marriages with unbelievers, prostituting to Gentiles the members of Christ; not only rash swearing, but perjury too; despising authority with haughty pretension; to speak evil with poisoned lip oneself; mutual discord with pertinacious hatred. Very many bishops, who should be an exhortation and example to others, despising their divinely-committed service (divina procuratione), make themselves agents (procuratores) of secular affairs, leave their see, desert the people, wandering through others' provinces, hunt after markets for gainful traffic, etc. (De Lapsis, 124, Fell's Ox. ed.).

Here is Jerome's account of the clergy (A.D. 394). "It is shameful to have to say, the priests of idols, buffoons, charioteers, harlots, receive inheritance; to the clergy and monks alone it is forbidden by law, and prohibited not by persecutors, but by Christian princes. Nor do I complain of the law, but that we should have deserved it. The cautery is good, but now the worst is that I should need the cautery. The provisions of the law are careful and severe, and yet thus avarice is not restrained. We mock the laws by trustees.* The glory of a bishop is to provide for the wants of the poor. The disgrace of all priests is the pursuit of their own wealth. Born in a poor home and in a rustic hut, who could scarcely satisfy my clamorous stomach with millet and the coarsest bread, I now turn up my nose at the finest flour and honey. I know the kinds and names of fishes. I am thoroughly au fait as to what shore shellfish are found on. I discern the provinces birds come from by their savour. I hear, moreover, of the base service of certain to old men and old women without children. They put the chamber-pot beside the bed, take away with their own hand the purulent matter from the stomach, and phlegm of the lungs. They are full of fear at the arrival of the physician, and with trembling lips inquire if the patient is better; and if the old person is a little more vigorous, they are in danger, and pretending falsely joy, the mind, inwardly avaricious, is tortured; for they fear lest they should lose their pains, and compare the living old body to the years of Methuselah." (Epist. ad Nepotianum 52, Vallarsii Ed. 1, 261.)

{*Every one acquainted with English law is aware that it was thus the statutes of mortmain were evaded. The English lawyers thought it was invented here for this purpose, but the clergy did not, it appears, want so long to find it out.}

189 Drunkenness, Augustine tells us, was universal; the clergy had lent themselves, he tells us, to the evil habits of heathens continuing among Christians, in order to win and keep them. He did not (he was a godly, faithful man), but put it down with danger to himself. (Epp. 22, 29, Ed. Ben.) It had reigned in other places (Ep. 22): he would have had the Africans set an example, but at any rate they should follow it. These are his words in letter 29: "But lest they who preceded us, and permitted, or did not dare prohibit, the manifest crimes of the inexperienced multitude should seem to have some opprobrium cast on them by us, I explained to them by what necessity those things had arisen in the church (getting drunk in church at the martyrs' festivals), namely, that when, after so many persecutions and so vehement, it would be a hindrance, when peace took place, to the crowd of Gentiles desirous of coming to the Christian name, that they were accustomed to pass festal days with their idols in abundance of feasts and drunkenness, nor could easily abstain from these very pernicious and yet very ancient pleasures: it seemed to those of old that they should spare for the time this part of infirmity, and celebrate, not with like sacrilege although with like luxury, other festal days after those which they had relinquished; that now, bound together as they were by the name of Christ, and subjected to the yoke of so great authority, salutary precepts of sobriety would be delivered to them, which, on account of the honour and fear of him who gave them, they would not be able to resist; as to which it was now time that, as those who did not dare deny their being Christians, they should begin to live according to the will of Christ, and that those things which were yielded to them that they might be Christians they should reject now they are so." Many said their fathers were good Christians and did so. However in that place Augustine succeeded. But here is a really holy man, the great light of the west, alleging that they had deliberately let the people be drunk in honour of martyrs, that they might not be so in honour of idols!

190 Gregory Thaumaturgus instituted saints' festivals to the same end, and Pope Gregory the First gave the same directions as to England. It was the same as to doctrine and worship. The pagans did not attempt, says M. Beugnot (Destruction du Paganisme, 2, 271), to defend their altars against the progress of the worship of the mother of God. They opened to Mary the temples which they had kept shut against Jesus Christ, and avowed themselves conquered. He adds in a note, "Out of a multitude of proofs I shall choose one to shew with what facility the worship of Mary swept before it the remains of paganism which yet covered Europe. Notwithstanding the preaching of St. Hilarion, Sicily had remained faithful to the ancient worship. After the Council of Ephesus (which decreed that Mary was the mother of God) we see its eight finest temples become in a very short time churches under the invocation of the virgin. Their temples were," etc., etc. "The annals of every country furnish like testimonies." "In truth," he continues, "they mixed with the adoration of Mary those pagan ideas, those vain practices, those ridiculous superstitions, from which they seemed unable to separate themselves; but the church rejoiced to see them enter within its bosom, because she well knew it would be easy for her, with the help of time, to purify from its alloy a worship which was purity itself." Thus some prudent concessions made temporarily to pagan habits, and the influence exercised by the worship of the virgin — such were the two elements of force made use of by the church to conquer the resistance of the last pagans.

191 It was the system. The Romans were passionately fond of festivals and processions. The Saturnalia and other feasts were at the end of December. Christmas* was fixed there; the Lupercalia in the end of January. It was a feast of purification. The purification of the Virgin Mary was fixed there. St. Peter de Vinculis replaced Augustus Caesar, and so of many others. See Beugnot, 2, 263, etc., where the concessions to pagan usages are enlarged on and justified. It is difficult to do this when they sanctified drunkenness by dedicating it to martyrs instead of demigods. M. Beugnot admits that their martyrs' festivals were a very large concession made to ancient manners, for all that passed while they lasted was little edifying! It was that system Vigilantius attacked and Jerome defended. Christians went to the heathen feasts, as Augustine, Chrysostom, and many others testify; they resisted, as in the case of Pope Gelasius and others, and when paganism fell, and the populations entered in crowds, they gave them Christian festivals, so-called, to replace the heathen ones. It was a whole system.

{*The feast now celebrated at Christmas (the very evergreens are pagan) was the expression of one of the worst principles of heathenism-the reproductive power of nature, celebrated at the return of the sun from the winter solstice. The Hindoos celebrate their Uttarayana at this time — have their twelve days, sending of presents, and wishing many happy returns: so the heathen Romans, so the Teutonic nations. Compare Wilson's "Religious Festivals of Hindoos," 2, 173.}

I may take the passage I have referred to in Gregory Thaumaturgus' life by Gregory Nyssen, as describing it in the case of the former. I shall be excused these long quotations. It is the establishment of an immense system, paganizing Christianity, first in doctrines in Alexandria, then in ceremonies everywhere.* "But when, with the divine help, that tyranny had been overthrown, and peace had again accepted human life, service towards God, which lay before them, was free to every one according to his ability; descending again to the city, and going round the whole district in a circle, he made an appendage for the people everywhere to their divine service. Having instituted the general assemblies for those who had been in the combat of faith, and, as they had taken away different persons to different places, the bodies of the martyrs, going round in a procession, they celebrated festivities in a yearly anniversary, holding a general assembly to the honour of the martyrs. For indeed this was a demonstration of his great wisdom, that, remodelling to a new life in a mass the whole generation of his day, set as a charioteer to nature, submitting them securely to the reins of faith and the knowledge of God, he allowed what was subject to the yoke of faith to caper a little in enjoyment. For perceiving that the childish and uninstructed mind of the many remained, through bodily hilarity and enjoyments, in the error of idols, that the principal thing with them should be specially set right, their looking to God instead of vain objects for worship, he allowed them to make merry at the memories (tombs or places consecrated to them) of the martyrs, and to enjoy themselves, and to celebrate festivities, that some time or other their life might be changed to what was more seemly and exact." It is said he only left seventeen heathen at his death.

{*The reader will find some other details on its establishment farther on, connected with another subject.}

192 But how opposite to the blessed delivering power of the Spirit, as seen in scripture! How does it come under the apostle's word, "But now after that ye have known God, or rather are known of God, how turn ye again to the weak and beggarly elements whereunto ye desire again to be in bondage? Ye observe days, and months, and times, and years. I am afraid of you, lest I have bestowed upon you labour in vain." This part of the history gives the decay in doctrine and spiritual state, till on the fall of paganism its ceremonies and feasts were deliberately transferred to the nominal church. Many went on with their heathenism. This was condemned by the hierarchical authorities, but long persevered in. Gregory I condemns it in England, but directs, as Gregory Thaumaturgus did, similar feasts among the professing mass that had been brought in, to keep their fleshly minds contented. This was the primitive church, ante-Nicene and post-Nicene. From this we pass gradually into the medieval. It was a space of nine hundred years, dark, confessedly dark; but we must leave it. Its result was what gave occasion to Protestantism. I shall examine the church, and afterwards the history of the popes. We shall see how far holiness, the alleged note of the church, can be found.

In 953, 931-974, Ratherius, bishop of Verona and Liege, charges the clergy with corrupt avarice and universal incontinency; the popes themselves many times married, a warrior, perjurer, heretic, gambler, and drunkard — such a shame to the whole church could not be a rebuker of others. He says in his Itinerary (Fleury, 12, 193) he held a synod to correct this, but the clergy kept none of the canons; the synods he held were to maintain the canons. There were bigamists, concubine-keepers, conspirators, perjurers, drunkards, usurers. The cause of the ruin of all the people, he says, is the clergy. The ignorance of the clergy was excessive; he says they must learn the three creeds, and be able to read the Gospel and certain services. No one, he says, was fit to be made a bishop, or to consecrate one. They would not give up their incontinency, and counted the rest for nothing. The Italian clergy despise the canons the most, because they are the most given to impudicity, and minister to this vice by ragouts and excess of wine (Dupin, vol. 8, 19, etc. Fleury 50, 100, from D'Achery and Mabillon). He may have been said to be ruthless and violent. The Benedictines defend him. Damianus, a great friend of Hildebrand (Gregory VII), the strictest of monks, re-establisher, if not inventor, of the Flagellators (self-scourgers), the able champion of Rome against the emperor, the reducer of Milan (till then independent) to subjection to the pope, given up to devotion to Mary, who gave up his cardinalate and see, to the great pain and offence of Hildebrand, out of piety, in a book entitled "Liber Gomorrhianus," the name of which betrays its import, addressed to the pope, complains of the way in which the clergy were given up to such crimes, it being alleged they could not depose them for it, as people must have the sacraments: they committed them, we read, with their own children — I apprehend, those who came to confession. Pope Leo approved the book. His letter of recommendation is prefixed to it. Damianus refers to canons which gave trifling penances for fornication; if even with a nun, and habitually, five years' penances. (These canons he alleged to be forged, or of uncertain authority, though amongst the canons.) Damianus demanded the deposition of those guilty of these things. The pope answers, they deserved by the canons to be deposed, but out of clemency he would depose only the most immoral. On which Fleury remarks, "which leads us to suppose that the numbers of the guilty were too great to treat them with rigour." The next pope, Alexander II, got the book, and hid it, of which Damianus complains bitterly. In the Romish council of 1059 he wished them to take it up, but it was refused, as likely to produce scandal. (Fleury, 12, 532; Dupin.)

194 Already in 888, in two councils (Mogunt. et Metens. Hardouin, vol. 6), the clergy are forbidden to have a mother or sister in the house, though it had been allowed. In the latter case examples of vice had given occasion to it (Conc. Mog. cap. 10). Renolf of Soissons gave like orders (889). In the council of Aenamhense (1009), connection with women is forbidden; but it is added (101), "but it is worse that some should have two or more, and (nonnullus) such an one, although he had sent her off whom he lately had, during her life should marry another."

In the time of Gregory VI (1045) Rome was full of assassins and robbers, says Fleury, quoting William of Malmesbury. They drew the sword even at the altar and the tombs of the apostles, to carry off the offerings as soon as they were put there, and use them for feasts and to maintain corrupt women. He exhorted, excommunicated in vain, and at last seized St. Peter's to begin, and drove away or killed those who were stealing the offerings.

In 910 and 927-941 Clugny (that is, the reformation of the monks) began. Before, in the confusion of the empire, laymen, women, had the monasteries as inheritances; abbots had their wives — as Campo, who had seven daughters and three sons, and his second, Hildebrand, and all their monks. Yet, in the well-known discourse of Bernard, abbot of Clairvaux, he says, the whole Christian people, from the least to the greatest, had conspired against God. It is not the time to say, As the people, so the priest: for the people are not even as the priest is. They are ministers of Christ, but serve Antichrist. All that remains is, that this man of sin should be revealed. (Sermon on conversion of Paul.)

Pope Benedict VIII rages against the licentiousness of the clergy (forbidding marriage), but more because the clergy, who were serfs, had children by free women, and the church lost her property in serfs. Still, he declares, in language which I do not transfer to these pages, the universal and — open profligacy of the clergy, more shameless than the laity, between the years 1012 and 1014 (Hardouin, 6).

It was at this epoch that the prohibition to the clergy to marry was rigidly enforced, and, as is known, by Hildebrand. The wives were treated as concubines by the popes; but they were married, and openly, with ordinary solemnities very often. In England, it appears, few were not, but the kings made them pay for it (Hard. Conc. Lon. 7, 1147). Lanfranc allowed it: later, Anselm raged against it. It shews the state of Christendom, that many of the synods forbid the children born of the priests inheriting their cures. They gave them as portions even to their daughters. Paschal, pope, died 1118, ordered men on their death-beds to receive the sacrament from them, rather than from none; and that their sons should be admitted to the priesthood in England, as almost the major part of the clergy, and the better part, were in this case (Paschal's letter in Hard. 7, 1804-1807). That the bishops took money for allowing the priests to live with women is recognized (Conc. Lat. 114, Hard. 8, 31),* and in the Constitutions of Canterbury, where it is said, as spiritual judgments did not hinder the evil of concubinage, they were to be mulcted in their benefices.

{*Thomas Aquinas counsels them to have a wife, secretly, or with connivance.}

195 Decrees as to this may be found in Hardouin from 1217 to 1302; the canons of Conc. Lat. 4, 1215, enforced by Edmund, Archbishop of Canterbury, 1236, Hard. 8, 1236. In the canon law (Distinct. 81, 100, 6) it is said, that a clergyman convicted of having begotten children in the presbytery is to be deposed. The gloss on this is — But it is generally said, that a clergyman is not to be deposed for simple fornication, because few can be found without that sin.

The literature of these ages teems with the bitterest reproaches against the clergy, as setting an example of simony, money-getting (one was alleged to have five hundred benefices), and licentious morals, brawls in taverns, unnatural crimes, impossible to be quoted, increased by a prohibition to marry, a measure not however fully carried into effect for two centuries, and long resisted in the north, as in England, Denmark, Norway, Sweden, the people often insisting that the priest should have a wife. Pope Alexander IV (as quoted, it is not in Hardouin, and I have not access to Mansi) admits the evil state of things in 1258. "So a drowsiness of deadly carelessness seems in the greater part to have oppressed the vigilance of pastoral life, which we say, groaning, as the too great corruption of Christian people crying out from many regions testifies; which, when it ought to be cured by the remedies of a sacerdotal antidote, alas! grows greater by the contagion of evils, which proceeds from the clergy, so that it should be anywhere true what the prophetic complaint bears witness to, saying, As the people is become, so the priest."

196 I may now go on to a later state of things. The bishops received money regularly to allow the priests to keep women. This was forbidden by the Council of Paris, 1429 (C, 23, Hard., vol. 9, Derlusanum (Tortosa), 1429, 100,2; the council of Basle, session 20, C, 1). But it is said, it was again authorized by a local council of Breslau, that they were to put them away under a penalty of ten florins. I have not the German local councils to verify the quotation in this case.

Later again, W. F. Picus, Lord of Mirandola, that is, the nephew of the famous Pic de Mirandola (as quoted in a literal extract which I cannot verify, not possessing his works) says, that priests left the natural use of women, and good boys were given up to them by their parents, and, when grown older, then were made priests of. I give it literally, only in Latin: "Ab illis (sacerdotibus) etiam (proh pudor) foeminae abiguntur ad eorum libidines explendas, et meritorii pueri a parentibus commendantur et condonantur his, qui ab omni corporis etiam concessa voluptate sese immaculatos custodire deberent. Hi postea ad sacerdotiorum gradus promoventur aetatis flore transacto jam exoleti." This was an address to Pope Leo in 1517, the year Luther began the Reformation.

The receiving of money by bishops for priests' concubines was evidently general; complained of in Constance, written against by authors. Theodorich, Archbishop of Cologne, ordered them to be dismissed, and then took money from the priests for it. In the council of Paris, already quoted from Hardouin, they complain, that because of the concubinage of the clergy, with which many ecclesiastical and religious men (secular clergy and monks) are infected, the church of God and the whole clergy are held in derision, abomination, and reproach by everybody, and that most iniquitous crime has so prevailed in the church of God, that Christians do not now believe simple fornication to be a sin. These testimonies may be multiplied ad libitum.

I go on now to what preceded the Council of Pisa, a council that is a great trouble to Roman Catholics, as I may shew farther on. Clemangis was rector of the University of Paris, the most famous then in the world, the correspondent of popes and kings, earnestly seeking the healing of the schism; for there were two popes then. This led to their using all possible means to make money, provisions, annates, tenths, exacting in every shape and every way, giving a right to their favourites to a living, whoever had a right to present to it. He declares that many of the clergy did not know their A B C. He attacks the cardinals for their pride and insolence; though drawn from the lowest ranks of the clergy, they had up to about five hundred benefices. He says, "he is not willing (non volo) to enumerate their adulteries, rapts (stupra), fornications, by which they pollute the Roman court, nor relate the most obscene life of their family — nothing inconsistent, however, with the morals of their masters." The oppression of the bishops was intolerable: if any ecclesiastic was put in prison for any great crime, on payment of a certain sum he came out as white as snow. He complains of the bishops, as we have seen they did, making the clergy compound for keeping a concubine. "If any now is lazy, if any one hates to work, he flies to the priesthood. As soon as he has attained to it, they diligently frequent brothels and taverns, and spend their time drinking, eating, dining, supping, playing at dice and games, gorged and drunken; they fight, cry out, make riots, execrate the name of God and His saints with their most polluted lips. Sicque tandem compositi, ex meretricum suarum complexibus ad divinum altare veniunt." This was a common complaint. "The bishops," he says, "go to court; perhaps they were better away, for what could they profit by their presence, who at the utmost enter the church two or three times a year; who pass whole days in falconry and the chase, who eat most exquisite feasts, in shouting and dances, and pass their nights with girls and effeminate persons; who drag, by a base example, the flock by crooked paths on to the precipice," etc. Were the monks and councils better? They are Pharisees, false doctors, the ravening wolves spoken of in scripture; he calls the nunneries brothels of Venus. To make a girl take the veil is to give her up to prostitution. All that Dupin ventures to say as to this last is, that he describes it in very strong terms, and apparently too violent (outrès).

197 Clemangis admits that there are exceptions to this state of the clergy, but that the majority are such. Now, I do not doubt a moment that there were godly men who shrunk away from all this iniquity, and sought communion with God, some persecuted, some not; and communities of another character, not under vows, as the brethren of the common doctrine, Groot, Thomas a Kempis, and many others, whose schools merged in the light of the Reformation. But this is the character of the so-called Holy Catholic Apostolic Church. Christian conscience, yea, natural conscience, was weary of the wickedness.

198 I shall be told that the doctrine of the church was holy. Dr. Milner, a standard book in England, tells us, that there is the doctrine of holiness, the means of holiness, the fruits of holiness, the divine testimony of holiness. That the church itself was holy* he does not attempt to shew; he speaks of individuals, a number of persons, who have given their names to churches as saints, and besides that, it was certain, there have been a countless number. As to sanctity of doctrine, he speaks of the Trinity and the Incarnation, etc., most holy doctrines surely, but not doctrines about holiness. He identifies justification and sanctity, saying, "the efficient cause of justification or sanctity" — the principal and most efficient means being the sacraments, and then her public service. The attestation of sanctity is miracles.

{*Dr. Pusey tells us, in defending himself against Romanizers, that it is by faith the church is recognized as holy. What a confession! And note — holiness is one mark by which we are to recognize the true church (a doctrine I do not except to); but when we come to seek it as a mark, then we must believe it to be holy, by means of faith. What a satire! What are we to believe to be holy? the unholy church. And how is it then a proof? I am to know the true church by its holiness, and when I find an awfully wicked body, believe it is holy because it is the church! I must say this is a mockery, and a mockery in holy things; a trifling with the claims of God.}

Now, there is not an attempt to say that the church is holy; in fact, I do not admit the doctrines of Rome to be holy. It is not holy to confound sanctity and justification; it is not holy to make sacraments the principal means, leaving out the word and Spirit of God, to which Christ and His apostles directly ascribe sanctification. It is not holy, it is Manicheism, to make holiness, and a holiness necessary to the clergy, by a prohibition to marry. It was the most unholy and wicked doctrine, against which the apostle warns us as a doctrine of devils, the fruit of a conscience seared with a hot iron. The fruits of it have been produced. They characterized the church. If a man can devote himself to the Lord, body, soul, and spirit, without a snare to himself, be it so. It is a grace and gift from God. But the moment you forbid to marry, you are on Manichean and Gnostic ground. It is urged, in order to defend Rome, that the passages in Paul's Epistle to Timothy apply to Gnostics. I admit it. They held that matter was a bad thing, hence that Christ had no material body, and other extravagances of every kind; but as a way or means of holiness, they taught abstinence from women. This was the doctrine of the Alexandrian school Dr. N. admires. They were infected with it. The Albigenses, the medieval fruit of Gnosticism in Christendom, constantly practised it; their perfect, or bonshommes, did not eat meat, nor have to say to women.

199 The Roman Catholic church taught holiness in this way, and of this kind. Their doctrine was unholy; what the fruits of it were we have seen. Further, the doctrine of indulgences was a horribly unholy doctrine. We are told it is only the remission of the temporal punishment of sin. But if a man died with the sacraments, he never could have any other. It was purgatory that was feared. A good Catholic has nothing else to fear; besides, the ignorant masses were not so nice as to this. The terror of sin was on their consciences, and the Roman church helped them to get rid of this terror; not by Christ's blood for the repentant, known by faith, and therefore purifying; not by having their soul restored by the operation of the Spirit of God; but by pardons bought with money. It was used to build and adorn churches, farmed out to bankers. A money tariff was made for sins, or the commutations of them, and years, thousands of years, of purgatory avoided by paying money. It was a traffic of sin — security as to future sins too. The nominal church had returned to pagan vices, as Paul foretold it would. (Compare Rom. 1 and 2 Tim. 3.) The difference was this: corruption had its way in paganism; it was horrible as horrible could be. But Papal Rome systematized it, and made a tariff for sin. Not in the known world, that I am aware of, has there been iniquity like this — a tariff made for sin! Can Dr. N. be surprised that there arose a protest against it? that there were Protestants? The word of God was brought out; no one can deny it. Old truths were maintained, and justification by faith preached. Truth was preached. That man's will, long suppressed, broke out; that the church was not set up as at the beginning, I admit; that a vast mass of Protestantism has fallen into infidelity, alas! I do not deny, though in Germany there is a strong reaction, and it is far more the case among cultivated Roman Catholics: only they do not publish it, as in Germany. But a protest against Rome could not have been delayed. It had been going on at Pisa, at Basle, at Constance, by legal attempts, by the centum gravamina, by the complaints of Bernard and Wessalas, and holy men of times previous to the Reformation. All the difference was, that God then raised up men of sufficient faith to brave the pope; whereas previously the reformation had been left to the popes, and all was worse than ever.

200 I admit and feel that it is dismal work going over all this wickedness; and I have still to pursue the task. If we pursue the study of the truth, it nourishes and sanctifies. We are occupied with unseen things; but as the imagination of men is sought to be filled with an idea of the holy Catholic church, it is needful to turn to the facts, that one may know that what is called the Catholic church was the unholiest thing in the world — that it had extinguished the truth, put to death the saints, and corrupted morals, till it became intolerable. Satan was not allowed to set aside the dogmatic foundation of the evidence of a divine Saviour, as in the mass of the population in the East by Mahometanism; so that still I do not the least doubt many unknown pious souls were found, and some known, however dark in knowledge, as Bernard; but these felt the evil. As Bernard said, it only remained for Antichrist to come. My object here is not to go through the Roman Catholic controversy: when God's word is believed, it is very simple. Hebrews 9 and 10 suffice to prove it apostate in its central doctrine. I believe it false in all that distinguishes it. Its pretension to catholicity is absurd, as probably the majority of Christendom, and certainly the most ancient churches, are outside its pale. Unity hence fails in its first element. There is no external unity now. Nor was there in the Roman body in former times. The great modern doctrine of the immaculate conception of the Virgin Mary was denied by the most powerful body in the Roman system, the Dominicans. The prince Archbishop of Breslau left that system not long ago because of its being papally decreed.* Transubstantiation was only decreed in 1215, having been rejected by the best of the fathers and doctors for centuries: the contrary doctrines were used earnestly by them against the Eutychians. Whatever apostolic succession is worth, it is far more elsewhere than at Rome. But I cannot enter now into all these questions. I am accounting for the Protestantism which Dr. N. hated.

{*Dr. Pusey, in his "Eirenicon," has fully shewn what Dr. Newman's statement as to the unanimity of modern Romanists on this point is worth.}

201 It will be alleged that there was individual sanctity. Now that there were God's hidden ones in all times I cannot doubt a moment. And if the character of their holiness shewed want of scriptural light, it was not necessarily the less sincere. Still it is beyond all question that the universal unholiness of the professing world, and especially of the priests, and the idolatry prevalent in Christendom, exposed those whose consciences were oppressed by what was all around them to fall into the snares laid for them by Satan in the shape of false doctrine. The effect of this was, that Christendom was composed of, first, unholy, iniquitous, and persecuting orthodoxy (a few souls groaning under the state of things, such as Bernard, who said, All that remained was for Antichrist to come; and others, that he was born already at Rome); secondly, of a vast number (for they filled the country from Asia to Spain) who had fallen into Manichean notions, and sought holiness by judging all matter as itself unholy, but whose devoted and blameless walk won the conscience of the population, till they were put down by fire and sword; and thirdly, of a number — whose doctrines it is hard to discover — whose constancy and blameless walk astonished conscientious men; and lastly, of others who were counted only schismatics, whose only fault was that they could not own the corruption which reigned around them. One class or another of these was spread all over Europe. It is a sad history; for they were all hunted as wild beasts all over the country, burned and tortured, and it is often hard to ascertain what they really did hold. The inquisition was invented for putting them down. Of one large class, Albigenses and Waldenses (of whom the former, I suppose, were, as to their leaders at any rate, more or less Manichean), the judgments at Toulouse may be found in the end of Limborch's History of the Inquisition, other notices in many popular books. and a good deal of research as to them collected in a note to Elliott's Horae Apocalypticae. Of the Moravians, before they were driven out of Bohemia and Moravia, the best account is a German work — History of the Bohemian Brethren by Gindely.* Prague, 1857.

{*"Geschichte der Bohmischen Bruder." Part of a larger work. "Bohmen u. Mahren, im Zeitalter der Reformation." Gindely is a Romanist; but fair enough as a historian.}

202 But I must add a few words as to the character of the holiness that was introduced as the church declined, and when it had lost its first love and true Christian holiness of walk. We have seen, by contemporary statements of Cyprian, Jerome, Augustine, that this was the case, and dreadfully so. I now only notice the character of what was substituted. It was at a time (and it is not without importance to note it) when Jerome complains bitterly that there was no need to make laws against heathen priests and deceivers, but that there was against Christian priests besetting the sick-beds of old persons in order to get their inheritance. A new kind of sanctity was introduced — devotedness to the saints, monastic habits of life, celibacy, etc. Jerome, Paulinus of Nola, and Martin of Tours, were the great promoters of this. Sulpicius Severus gives us the history of the last, Jerome and Paulinus furnish us with their own history; but it was a spurious holiness, false miracles and wonders, accompanied with drunkenness and violent tempers. No one can deny that the men I have named were the types and promoters of this kind of devotion.

Let us see some of the historical characteristics of it. First, as to Martin of Tours, the apostle of Gaul, he lay on ashes, as he was, for his bed, and covered with a sack and the like; and when he put his foot out of the cell to go a couple of miles to church, all the possessed in the church shewed he was coming, though in different ways, so that the clergy learnt thus he was coming. "I saw" (I quote from Sulp. Sev. Dialogues 3, 6) "one caught up into the air as Martin was coming — suspended on high, with his hands stretched out, his feet unable to touch the ground: Martin prayed prostrate in sackcloth and ashes. Then you might see the unhappy men cleansed by their going out in different ways; these, their feet being carried up on high, hang as if from a cloud, and yet their garments fall not down over their face, lest the naked part of their bodies should put people to shame." So in Egypt. Two friends went to see one of the Anchorites. An enormous lioness came and sought him, and they all followed her. She took them to a cave, and they saw what was the matter: five cubs were all blind. The Anchorite stroked their eyes, and they saw. Soon after the lioness brought a skin of some rare wild beast — how acquired we do not learn — and brought it to the Anchorite, and he took it and wore it (Dialogue 1, 9). Another lived up in Mount Sinai, naked; and, when at last seen, he said, He who was visited by men, could not be by angels. Martin met a furious cow that had gored several. She was rushing at him. He told her to stand, and she did; and then saw a devil on her back, and ordered him off; and he went, and the cow was quiet. Nor was that all. The cow knew very well what had happened, and came and knelt down before Martin, then, on Martin's order, went and found the herd (Dialogue 2, 9). He was most familiar with demons; knew when it was Jupiter, when Mercury, who was the most troublesome of all, and specially when he had the saints with him. When Sulpicius Severus went to see him, all was harmony, and Martin was talking, and women's voices within, for two hours, while Sulpicius and Gallus were outside. This turned out, as he told them after he came out covered with ashes and filth, to be Agnes, and Thecla, and Mary: often Martin said Peter and Paul,. but then all of a sudden a whole lot of devils came, Martin denouncing them by their names. Jove, he said, was a brute, and stupid (brutum et hebetum). Alas! they beset his dying bed (Letter 3 to Bassula). "Why are you standing there, bloody beast?" he said; "thou shalt find nothing, O fatal one, in me; the bosom of Abraham has received me"; and so expired. Yet he had promised pardon to the devil if he repented. The devil was accusing some monks who had sinned after baptism. Martin replied that crimes were purged by the conversation of a better life, and God would pardon; and then said to the devil, if he, as judgment-day was near, even then left off following after men, and repented of his deeds, he himself, trusting in the Lord, promised him the mercy of Christ. I might multiply all kinds of stories; but this surely is enough. He died in 402, or thereabouts. When he dined with the Emperor, he gave the cup to the presbyter first, as superior to him; such was the lowliness of the ascetic worker of miracles (Life, 23).

203 This was the kind of sanctity now introduced. Paulinus' was specially shewn in honouring St. Felix. He had festivals in honour of his saint. But, alas! as we have seen, this change to honouring saints instead of heathen demigods, thus systematically established, did not change the habits. He deplores the votaries honouring the saints with drinking bouts. Verum utinam sanis agerent hoc gaudia votis, nec sua liminibus miscerent pocula sanctis (Natalis, 9). So elsewhere.* He adds, he has covered St. Felix's house with holy pictures; that the gaper may drink in sobriety, and forget too much wine. He implores the aid of St. Felix directly, not even his intercession, for sickness and a bad eye; he calls himself him that is thine; he seems to make the saints particularly efficacious wherever a part of their body was. This is the holiness Baronius compares with Protestantism (394, 93).

{*However, he thinks such joys are to be pardoned, as error creeps into rude minds; nor, conscious of so great a fault, fails in piety in fancying amiss the saints' delight in it.

… "Ignoscenda tamen puto talia parvis,

Gaudia quae ducunt epulis, quia mentibus error

Irrepit rudibus, nec tantae conscia culpae,

Simplicitas pietate cadit, male credula sanctos

Perfusis halante mero gaudere sepulcris."

Is this holiness — is it a system of holiness? Paulinus does not approve of it. But it was common; and the system which gave rise to it was approved by Rome, as a system. In the well-known letter to Mellitus, Gregory I desires Augustine not to pull down the temples, if well built, but to sprinkle them with holy water, put relics of saints in them, and as they were accustomed to slaughter many oxen in the sacrifice of demons, the solemnity was to be changed somewhat. On the festival of the saint whose relics were there, they were to make booths about the cleansed temple, and celebrate the solemnity with religious feasts; that while some external joys were reserved to them, they might be better able to consent to internal ones, as it was not doubtful it was impossible to cut off all at once with hard minds. He cites Jewish sacrifices as a condescension to heathen habits in Egypt. (Lib. 9, 71, or 11, 76.)}

204 As to St. Jerome, it is impossible to have a more eloquent description of Romish holiness than the efforts of the excellent Tillemont to keep poor Jerome's name among the saints. He sought to overcome his nature, I dare say. He fasted excessively, lived in grime and filth, did everything possible to subdue flesh by flesh's efforts; but nature is not overcome thus. Tillemont declares that he was very little exact in stating things as they were, following more his own ideas than the truth. These, however, he says, are the defects of a great genius But he did not weigh what he said, and, which is more to be regretted, attacked St. Chrysostom; indeed, whoever he had as an adversary was the basest of men: he had too great an idea of his eloquence, shews it, was naturally jealous and envious, so as to wound his greatest friends and alienate them. It is hard not to recognize that he had in his natural character a sourness and bitterness which pained many. He was soon on fire when offended, and did not easily pardon. Are we to say, he asks, if so many saints who have admired him, and the church who honours him amongst its saints and doctors, have been deluded — a humble son of the church cannot say that — St. Ambrose, St. Chrysostom, St. Augustine are excellent models of a perfect virtue to animate us to imitate them? But others have had great sins, as David. We may say even that the defects of Jerome are useful, as teaching us what the substance (le fond) of virtue and Christian piety is. For if it consisted in an even and uniform life, in which few faults are committed, one would have to prefer Ruffinus to him. But the church leaves him to God's judgment, and has always had the greatest respect for Jerome. Not the services he has rendered the church by his labours;* these are not virtues. Tillemont can see that in his case his austerities would not do. Doubtless, he says, they were very useful to him (which his own account, by the bye, does not shew, though I do not question their sincerity in seeking to maintain incorruptness in celibacy, which he held the highest of virtues), yet, if we had nothing else to praise in him, we should have reason to fear they had rendered him proud, and had been the cause of that severe and critical spirit which some have blamed in him. He then shews what he thinks proof of what constitutes a saint: first, his love of his solitary life and poverty, though he could have enjoyed the favour of Pope Damasus and the wealth of Saint Marcella and Saint Paula, two rich women who admired him greatly; and his fleeing those who honoured him — humility which was shewn in not exercising the functions of priest, for which he had been brought up; his eleemosynary charity and laborious service for others, when he might have been glad to be writing; he hopes his anger against his heretical adversaries, and certainly his conduct in exalting St. Augustine, when he might have seemed a competitor, the more so as he had quarrelled with him. Such is Tillemont's kindly and gracious excuse for what he was obliged to tell in his history; for in fact Jerome's language, particularly against those who deprecated monkish sanctity, saint and image worship, was regular Billingsgate; for this is really the only word to describe it by. Tillemont then makes a saint of him in these words. The scripture does not call him alone happy who is without spot and does not sin; but, moreover, him to whom God does not impute sin, because he hates it by a pure and sincere love of righteousness, and that he covers it by the nuptial robe of charity, which covers a multitude of sins — a deep and deadly error, arising from a confusion of Proverbs 10:12, quoted by Peter, and Psalm 32:1. I believe, as to God's government in the church, fervent charity may keep many sins out of sight by Christian forgiveness so as not to come before God for present judgment; but to confound it with Psalm 32, quoted in Romans 4, is a denial of the gospel and the truth, but the foundation of Romish righteousness and sanctity, even in the hands of the very respectable Tillemont.

{*He corrected the translation of the scriptures.}

206 Another painful question may be asked — Why bring all this failure up, if things are changed? Is there such vice now? In the first place I reply in the inquiry, Has the Romish body the "note of holiness"? The facts are everything. It certainly has not. But I must answer. There is no doubt that the light and spiritual energy of the Reformation caused a certain amelioration in Rome; but I still must say, that where the action of this is not directly felt, it is not changed. Mr. Froude, whose hard-riding imagination had made a picture of medieval holiness, as we learn, was checked by the degeneracy he found in Italy. We have seen what they degenerated from. I have known a good deal by personal experience in several countries, and a good deal more by that of others; and I believe that in principle and practice there is no change, though there may be more concealment.

It is thought infidelity is found among Protestants especially. It is a mistake: more, I believe, in the bosom of what is called Catholicism; but not published, as among those called Protestants. Go to France and Italy, and see the state of men, in towns especially.

I turn to the popes, to see what their history affords as a stay to the soul, or if it were a cause of righteous revolt. The absence of the emperors from Rome, and their presence at Constantinople, made the episcopate of Rome a post of great importance and political power. Its ecclesiastical jurisdiction was really comparatively small. It was respected as the see of the capital, and had a primary rank — if worldly rank is to be looked for in Christ — which Constantinople contested with it as the new capital. But Augustine, the great western doctor, and the African council, forbade appeals to Rome as intolerable. But I confine myself here to their history, that we may have what we are called to look upon as infallible, as commanding our respect and submission as holy, as of God.

207 Already, in the fourth century, intrigues for the possession of papal power became a source of public trouble. In 366 Pope Liberius died, and contests for the see began. Damasus was elected by a majority, Ursicinus by a large party, both being consecrated bishops of Rome. The Emperor banished Ursicinus; but his partisans met in the churches they possessed, and refused communion with Damasus. The Emperor took away the churches. They met outside Rome, and were banished the country. In the dispute the parties fought for victory, and a vast number of Christians were killed, even in the churches.

But the origin of the violent feud is more important than the feud itself. The Emperor Constans was an Arian persecutor. Liberius had condemned Athanasius, and communicated with the Arians. When called on to subscribe an Arian creed, it appears he repented, and recalled his condemnation. The Emperor summoned a council at Arles, where the legates of Liberius signed a semi-Arian creed. Afterwards, at the Council of Milan, hesitating, he was banished, and Felix consecrated pope by an Arian minority. Rome murmured, and Liberius was restored, after three years' exile, but signed an Arian creed; and there were two popes — one said to be really Arian, and in communion with Arians who had made him pope; the other, who had signed an Arian creed against his conscience. Felix was driven out by the people, who favoured Liberius, though the clergy had mainly submitted to Felix. Liberius wrote to the Eastern bishops, who had condemned Athanasius, to declare his agreement with them, and that he never agreed with Athanasius. Hosius, of Cordova, the president of the Council of Nice which condemned Arius, had given way to the Emperor before Liberius. Felix is counted among the popes as Felix II. Damasus was of the Felix party, and hence the riots. It is stated that in the riots about Felix, which were very great, many were killed; that there were real massacres in baths, streets, and churches, of laity and clergy who favoured Felix; but there is some obscurity as to the history. (Bar., anno 357, Tillemont, vol. 6; Hilarii P. Fragmenta, p. 1335, where he interrupts his history, or rather Liberius' letter to the Eastern bishops, and turns to anathematize Liberius.) Efforts have been made to screen Liberius, by questioning what Sirmian creed he adopted. So Baronius. But, if we are to trust Hilary, there can be no mistake as to his Arianism; nor does Tillemont nor Dupin defend him from this accusation, nor Jerome either.

208 Zosimus became pope in 417. He formally approved Pelagianism. The synod at Lydda accepted Pelagius' confession of faith. Augustine and the African bishops had condemned him. Zosimus reproves them sharply. The African churches met in 418; Pelagius was condemned and anathematized; and they add, if any one presumed to appeal beyond sea, no one was to receive him into communion. There is as to what follows some conflict of dates; but a decree of the Emperor Honorius was obtained, Pelagius and Caelestius banished from Rome, and Zosimus now condemned what he had approved, and cut them both off from communion. On the death of Zosimus (418), two popes, Boniface and Eulalius, were elected. Boniface attempted to maintain his place by force. The prefect kept the peace, and reported in favour of Eulalius to the Emperor Honorius. Honorius confirmed Eulalius, and banished Boniface from the city. Boniface maintained his ground outside, and his partisans appealed to Honorius. The Emperor cited both before him. The prefect told him neither could be trusted in their statements. Difficulties arose in the decision. Honorius forbade both to go into the city, and sent a bishop for the Easter ceremonies. However, Eulalius went in. His adherents were unarmed. Boniface's, who were of the populace, made a violent attack, and the prefect hardly escaped. But Honorius, glad to terminate the matter, condemned Eulalius for going in, and appointed Boniface. Eulalius was driven out of the city by force. (Baronius' Annals, 419.)

It was about this time that the popes alleged forged canons of the Council of Nice to maintain their authority in Africa. The African bishops had the records of Constantinople, Antioch, and Alexandria, besides their own, searched; found they were forged, and refused to submit, reproving Pope Celestine, and denying his right to send his legate a latere. These appeals of evil persons the popes were constantly receiving as a means of establishing their authority. (Hardouin's Councils, 1, 934, Prohibition to Appeal, Can. 125, Letters to Pope Boniface, 939, and to Celestine, 947.) The letter to Celestine is very strong indeed, Faustinus, the legate's mission, being wholly rejected.

209 The fifth general council condemned three chapters of the fourth. Pope Vigilius, who was at Constantinople, had demanded the council called the fifth; then objected to it, and would not assist; was exiled by the Emperor, published a constitution condemning the chapters, saying that he did not condemn the council of Chalcedon (the fourth), on whose authority they rested. The Romans wished him back. The Emperor agreed, and said they might have him or Archdeacon Pelagius for pope, or the latter after Vigilius. They wished Vigilius, and said they would take Pelagius afterwards, as he prescribed to them, and the Emperor let him go, on his confirming the council which condemned the three chapters. He died in Sicily on the way. Pelagius, who was suspected of poisoning him, succeeded him, publicly declaring however his innocence. Vigilius himself had climbed over the wall into the Papacy, Belisarius having, by the empress's orders, sent off Pope Silverius, who would not submit to the Emperor's theology, and put in Vigilius. Silverius however returned. Belisarius gave him up to Vigilius, who sent him to the island Palmaria, in guard, where he died. (Fleury, 537-558; vol. 7,356,482.) Baronius (sub an. 538) counts Silverius pope till his death. Vigilius had promised two hundred pounds of gold to Belisarius, and would not pay it. Pelagius' own election was very uncertain. Vigilius had at first condemned the three chapters in his judicatum. Thereupon the Roman clergy separated from him. The Africans excommunicated him. He, seeing he had condemned thus a general council to please the Emperor, and that the clergy turned against him, retracted; but meanwhile, it seems (Conf. Pagi ad Bar. 555, 8, note), the Roman clergy elected Pelagius. Then Vigilius yielded, and got into favour again, and the Emperor told the Romans they might have which they liked, and Pelagius, who came back with Vigilius from Constantinople, certainly joined in ill-treating him. Baronius says, no day or month is named when he succeeded, and complains bitterly of all this. Vigilius had condemned the council of Chalcedon, and written to the three other patriarchs (who were heretics according to it), anathematized the doctrines of the council of Chalcedon and Pope Leo in his famous letter, adopted by it, and renounced communion with those who defended it. Baronius denies the authenticity of these letters; but Pagi and Fleury both admit they are genuine. Silverius was really murdered by want and starvation. "He died of hunger," says Fleury; and indeed all historians remark that Vigilius was chosen pope when Silverius was alive, and never afterwards. Baronius tries to get out of it by supposing Vigilius was re-elected after Silverius' death; but it is merely because it ought to be. Silverius was son of Pope Hormisdas. (Fleury, and Baronius, 53, 120.) Vigilius ordained eighty-one bishops.

210 Pope Honorius was condemned as a heretic by the sixth ecumenical council. Baronius laboriously seeks to prove that Theodoret did it, and left his own name out, and put Honorius' in; but Pagi, his annotator, has, in very few words and by facts, shewn the absurdity of his attempt. Pope Adrian II refers to it, and says heresy was the only ground for thus resisting such a superior authority. He was anathematized also by Pope Leo II. (See Fleury, 40, 28. For the acts of the council, see Hardouin; quoted in Baronius and Fleury.)

Symmachus and Laurentius contended for the Papacy (498). It was a violently contested matter. Both were ordained pope the same day, and they appealed to Theodoric at Ravenna, Gothic king, an Arian, to decide. As most were for Symmachus, he was to be pope. He was accused of all sorts of crimes, and never was cleared. There was fighting in the streets for a length of time, and many killed and wounded. The only godly man we hear of was on the other side. Symmachus made regulations to hinder these contests — in vain, however; for men will be ambitious. The clergy had in other cases sold all the church's goods, and even the vessels of service, by auction, for pushing their candidates; so that it had been forbidden by rescripts and laws of the senate; and after Vigilius' election, more than 3,000 solidi were not to be paid at court after an election for the royal confirmation, etc., for a pope; 2,000 for a metropolitan. This was in 532. The king wrote to John, the new pope, recalling a decree of the senate in the previous pope's time, and allowing his officers to take so much. (Fleury, book 7, 625).

The history of the papal influence was this — when there were emperors, they ruled; but the pope's influence was growing ecclesiastically, though often resisted. When the empire fell, they were the chief influence (except the Arian Goths in Italy), and did pretty freely what they pleased, increasing in power in respect of Constantinople. However the Gothic kings confirmed them, and interfered, and were appealed to, as we have seen. When for a time the eastern empire reconquered Italy, the popes were servile and submissive to the emperors; they could not help it. When these were driven out again, they were oppressed by Lombards, but established in Rome by the Franks, Charlemagne however fully holding his own, and ruling at Rome. When the succeeding Carlovingian emperors were weak and divided, their power grew. Powerful emperors contended for the right of confirmation of popes and local investiture of prelates; and the history of the middle ages is the history of this conflict, the popes raising Italy against them (Guelphs and Ghibelines), and the emperors sometimes doing as they pleased. But the German emperors having to contend with subject princes as powerful as themselves, and jealous of them, the pope and they coalesced against the emperors: the popes even supported the rebellion of a son against his father the Emperor. In Boniface the eighth's time they laid their hand on France; but this was more united, and there was a signal failure. The pope had to give way. The next pope had his seat at Avignon, under French influence — the Avignon popes and the court being degraded to the last degree. At the end they had one pope at Rome and another at Avignon, this giving rise to the question whether the authority of a council were not superior to that of a pope, and to the three councils of Pisa, Basle (Florence, Lausanne), and Constance, which so puzzle Roman Catholic theorists. There was a universal cry for reformation in head and members, always avoided. At last came the Reformation, which threw the whole power into the pope's hands, the bishops holding only under him. And though Louis XIV maintained Gallican liberties, as they are called, yet the clergy are simply slaves to the pope. The Jesuit society sprang up at that time more powerful than the pope himself, and recovered southern Germany to popery.