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ter Christians ?” “Well, Father James, yer goin' somehow or other, clear and clane ag in the grain wud me; an' somehow I'm at a deshort to answer; ye appear to be right, bud I can't for the sowl o' me, feel comfortable some way; I wud rather ye wud'nt argue that-a-way, at all at all
“ Wait a little, Paddy, I have not done with you yet, but soon will-just listen to me.
Every religion grants that the Bible of God is true-mark that.”
« I do Sir." “Now, which religion do you think ought to be the better one—the religion that opens that book to all people, and invites them to come and try it by that word, and examine if the doctrines it teaches agree with it ? or the religion that acknowledges its truth, and pretends to be according to it, yet will not allow the people to read it, or compare its creed with that book? Don't think it looks rather suspicious for any church to hide it from her followers, when they wish to read it, that they may judge her by its contents ?
For some time before this Paddy began to discover that the chair on which he sat was very uncomfortable-he changed his position several times upon it-tapped the table with his fingers to the tune of Shane Buy, which he whistled to himself, and rubbed his middle finger several times along his eyebrows; in fact the old proverb “ There is none so deaf as they who will not hear," was heginning to be literally verified in him; during the latter part of Father Butler's remarks, he was engaged in re-tying the thong of his shoes, and when he had accomplished this, he viewed his feet to see that the shoes were tight upon him. When Father Butler had concluded, he started up and exclaimed, “ Bliss my sowl, Father Butler, what o'clock is id ?” “It's a little after twelve, Paddy, as you may perceive by the clock.”—“Manum a yeah agus a Wurrah, and me hasn't a word iv the office iv St. Joseph sed yit; God pardon me for neglectin' id !-Father, a hegur, I must be off; I hope Father Driscoll wont be sevare on me for id, as id was wud you I was, when I ought to be sayin id.” He then departed; but in less than a minute returned with this shrewd observation : “Father Butler, you have been tellin' me a great dale entirely agin the priests, an' our church, an' about the word of God. Now what have I for the thruth iv that same, but your word ; an' wud submission, ye see there may be a mistake in what you say, as well as in what ye war spakin' aginst.” “You see, Paddy, how readily you can doubt what I say, because it goes against your prejudices; but you are right to doubt it; and you should receive every thing touching your salvation with the same scruples, until you prove it hy the word of God; but I desire you to read that word, and to judge for yourself; now go to Father Driscol, and tell him you have your doubts of Purgatory, or of the use of scapulars and rosaries; and see if he will send you to the same test to prove to you that they are right; see if he will permit, much less enjoin you to read the Scriptures, that you may be satisfied of the Scriptural character of all your religious belief.” Why, what need I do that, when he made me burn the Bible that Blaney Irwin gave me, hekase it was a heretic book ?" “Paddy," continued Father Butler, you ,
have zeal, but it is not from knowledge. I myself felt the same opinions, and entertained the same prejudices that you do now; but I have examined for myself; and now I perceive my former errors.
St. Paul thought he was right when he went on his journey of persecution to Damascus ; but when the scales fell from his eyes, he also saw his errors. The Jews, too, thought they were right when they crucified our Holy Redeemer : and all persons think themselves so until they examine opposite opinions, with a view of understanding which is right and which is wrong. You see, therefore, Paddy, that there ought to be some standard that would show the people whether their religious belief may be truth or error, and whether they are in a sure way of working out their salvation or not. The Bible is this standard, given by God himself for the benefit of all his rational creatures -and they who keep it back from these creatures cannot be God's friends. You think a Priest can do every thing. I tell you, Paddy, he can do no more, in the miraculous point of view in which you all behold him, than another man: and what is stranger than all you have heard, Paddy, a Roman Catholic Priest is not an inch nearer heaven, merely because he is a Priest, than a Protestant parson, as you deridingly call him. There are, Paddy, to startle you still more, thousands of both Romish and Protestant clergymen singing the praises of their Redeemer hand in hand before his throne. And with respect to the gentleman in the study there, I can assure you, on the word of a dying man, that so far from attempting to proselytize me, he has not once opened his lips to me upon the subject. He breakfasted here to-day at my request; and any allusion that may have been made to the subject of religion, was made by myself. But that is the way, Paddy, in which good, pious, and benevolent men, who have
your sincere welfare at heart, both in this world and the next, are traduced and misrepresented by falsehood and ignorance. Go home now, mind
your business, read the Bible, and pray to God to guide you into truth, to enlighten your understanding, and change your heart, which overflows with the very gall of bitterness to every person who is not in your own church. Go home and do this, Paddy. I myself will see Father Driscoll, who, I am sorry to say, is not what a minister of Christ ought to be.
When Father Butler concluded, his auditor rose, compressed his lips together, took his stout woollen hat, and walked out, muttering «'Oh! wurrah ! wurrah! is id come to this at last! bud I knew when the heretics got about 'im, how it would be!" When he was gone, Father Butler returned into the study, and related the conversation which the reader has already perused. He then closed his own narrative: After Miss Upton's death, Sir,” he continued, “ you may easily conceive what followed. She was an only child; and her death left her father and mother, who doted upon her with, I fear, a blameable excess of fondness, in a state of the most pitiable desolation and bereavement. As for me, I felt that my heart was broken, even before that event. After it, my health and remaining strength wasted away rapidly,
and I was for a considerable time confined to my bed. While in this state, the ever-watchful and indefatigable Father A turned as he said, to console and sustain my father in this last and greatest stroke. I now felt my heart opposed to the man, and could scarcely bear to see him with any patience. Wbilst on this bed of sickness, I frequently reflected on the state of the Roman Catholic Church; and I blessed God that I was able to approach him, through the merits of bis Son alone, and to see the utter wickedness and guilt of my own fallen and corrupt nature. But, Sir, it is extremely difficult to shake off old prejudices at once; although my views of salvation were now generally clear and Scriptural, yet the force of my original opinions would occasionally master my better reason, and sink me in my former
I usually found this to be the case, when in a state of more than ordinary bodily weakness, or depression of mind. In such a frame I was, when you first met me on my way to the church-yard. Indeed the agonies I felt that night were excessive; for, in proportion as the illiberality and uncharitableness of the Roman Catholic creed gained upon my opinion, my suffering was the greater. I would then consider Ellen Upton, with all her charity, her patience, her resignation, her hope, and her pure rational and exalted faith, as a heretic, for ever lost to the blessed enjoyments of eternal life, and sunk in the endless torments of perdition. I assure you, Sir, I would not again suffer such a mental tornado-such a terrible desolation of all the more ami. able and benevolent feelings of the heart, nor such inconceivable anguish, as that reflection occasioned me, for any earthly consideration. But, thank God, they were not permanent; being only the last throes of expiring prejudice, they became every day still weaker, and of shorter continuance. It has often surprized me, Sir, how such a doctrine as exclusive salvation could gain ground among rational men-or how a religion which tramples upon and destroys the best moral principles of our nature, should have taken such deep root in the human heart. But if we examine the matter clearly, we will cease to be astonished at it. Rochefoucault bas observed, that there is something in the calamities and distresses of our best friends, that is not displeasing to us. This doctrine justifies and confirms that observation. For I, when a stedfast believer of exclusive salvation, remember, that the idea arising from the eternal punishment, which, I supposed, must await the soul of every individual not within the pale of my own church, used to come over my heart with a deadly and perverted pleasure, that proceeded not only from satisfaction in contemplating the punishment of the enemies of God and my religion, but from the heightened satisfaction I enjoyed, when contrasting the consideration of my own happiness with their misery. How can such a doctrine as this establish peace and good-will among men?' It is impossible. The principle in our nature upon which it rests is the worst that pervades and characterizes humanity--selfishness. Who ever received a favour, the value of which he did not conceive to be
lessened by seeing the same favour extended to many? And on the contrary enhanced, when only he himself, or a few along with him, receive it. Alas! this principle it is which is carried into the religion of the Church of Rome, because that religion is founded upon human passion, which it really draws out and nourishes, in order to strengthen its own influence over the heart. Such a religion must always darken and deteriorate the human mind; and it has ever done so. What is exclusive salvation but the Hindoo doctrine of caste? And the slavish prostration of rea. son, will, and judgment, to the power and dictum of a Priest, .but the same unmanly surrender of individual liberty and moral right, which the Priest-worshipping barbarians of Hindostan present? We see how deplorably the spiritual pride, which would arrogate to itself the exclusive privilege of salvation, was instanced in the Jews themselves-particularly in the Pharisees, who, while they sat in the seat of Moses, absolutely perverted the divine oracles of God, by striving to adapt them to their own corruptions ; thus rendering his commandments of none effect by their traditions, and ascribing to themselves the only merit of possessing truth, and of observing rites and ceremonies, with a scrupulous punctuality, whilst the law of God was not only violated without compuuction, in the ordinary course and occupations of life, but through those very rites and ceremonies which were founded upon an evasion of God's uncompromising and unaccommodating de.
Is not the present state of the Roman Catholic Church similar ? Look at the Pope assuming to be seated in the chair of Christ—the throne of infallibility. Behold him, like the Pharisee, anticipating his Creator in the awful office of Divine Judgeusurping in idea the prerogative and power of the Almighty, before whom he is but a worm--and dealing damnation to those, who, though not within the limits of his church, are still in the hand of their God. Behold him, like them, setting aside or concealing the direct commandments of God, and substituting in their stead human rites, and superstitious observances; establishing, as it were, rules and regulations for the commission of crime, and indulgences for its perpetrators. Are not the fastings, the whippings, and the other species of penances, the same which Christ condemned, when he told the self-righteous and infallible Pharisees to make clean the inside of the platter, that the outside might be clean also ? Is not the observance of the commandments of the Church, the refraining from meats which God hath created to be taken, the going to confession, the repetition of the rosaries, litanies, and other various offices of the Church, none of which are ever violated without remorse, even by those who do not scruple to blaspheme the name of God, and run into all sins and excesses--are not these, the same things which were also condemned in the Pharisees when they were called the blind guides, that strain at a gnat and swallow a camel ?" »
We intended to have concluded this Article in the present Number, bu of space compels us to defer it till our next.
SUPPLEMENT TO Review--An Introduction to the Critical Study and Know.
ledge of the Holy Scriptures. By Thomas Hartwell Horne, M. A. Sixth · Edition, corrected and enlarged. 4 vols. 8vo.—London, T. Cadell ; W. Blackwood, Edinburgh ; and R. Milliken, Dublin. 1828.
In the brief notice of this valuable work which appeared in our number for August, we were prevented by our limits from inserting any extracts: and we were, therefore, compelled to content ourselves with a very hasty and rapid summary, of the principal improvements which had been introduced. We shall now endeavour to supply the defect by directing the attention of our readers to some important and interesting subjects, which the Author has treated for the first time in this new edition. We are anxious to give some adequate notice of the improved state of a work whose merits have been so well appreciated by public approbation, as we have learned that repeated piratical attempts have been made, to deprive the Author of the well-earned fruits of his laborious and indefatigable exertions.
Few of our readers are, perhaps, aware of the remarkable and powerful confirmation which the evidences of Christianity have recently received from late discoveries in Egyptian antiquities; we know not any thing more cheering to the mind of the Christian, than to find that every new light which the research of man discloses from time to time in science or history reflects new lustre upon the evidences of his holy faith. The ancient hieroglyphics which had so long baffled the learning of Europe, have at length been decyphered by the researches of Mr. Salt, M. Coquerel, Dr. Young, M. Champollion-Figeac, and other eminent scholars, and we are thus put in possession of historical documents of extreme antiquity, and inestimable value, confirming in a remarkable manper the inspired narratives of the Old Testament—the following examples are given by Mr. Horne :
“1. Several ages before the time of Sesostris, the shepherd-kings, whom erery circumstance proves to have been of Scythian origin, invaded and conquered almost the whole of Egypt, about the year 2082, before the Christian era, and in the time of the Patriarch Abraham. The princes of the eighteenth dynasty (the Theban,) whose chief was Thoutmosis I., the first sovereign after the shep. herd-kings, erected the most ancient edifices of Thebes and Egypt. Thoutmosis was adored as a god, under the name of Amenothph, because he had delivered Egypt from the shepherds ; the recollection of whose tyranny was odious to the Egyptians and to the kings of that dynasty, to wbich the Pharaoh mentioned in the latter part of the Book of Genesis belongs. In Gen. xlvi. 34, Joseph tells his brethren that Every shepherd is an abomination unto the Egyptians. This hatred of theirs for shepherds is confirmed in a very sin. gular manner by a very ancient mummy now at Paris, beneath the buskins of both whose feet is painted a shepherd bound with cords. *
* Revue Protestante, Juillet, 1827, p. 12.