Obrazy na stronie


of the authorized judges of the land if he sought to know the remedy for any particular disorder, he would rest upon the united decision of the Faculty: if he would investigate the meaning of some abstruse passage in an ancient author, he would receive the consentient opinion of the most approved scholars or divines: and if he wished to learn the nature of the laws by which the heavenly bodies are governed, he would seek his instruction from those to whose competency the voice of public opinion, or the sanction of competent authority, had given the most unequivocal testimony. In short, the authorized and acknowledged standard of truth would be his guide in each or either instance: and so it must be in an endeavor to develop the nature and the accidents of Purgatory. They must be procured from those who believe in it, and teach it. They must be sought in those writings which have not only not been disapproved and condemned by superiors in authority, but which have been appealed to for ages by almost every controversialist of the Romish Church: and when such writings are ushered into the world cum permissu Superiorum, tacitly or openly expressed, surely it is not unfair to conclude that they contain doctrines of the Romish Church, and not merely opinions of private men.

It is upon this principle that the present volume has been written. Since the doctrine of Purgatory, as stated by the Council of Trent, is most indefinitely proposed, the Author has felt justified in appealing to the acknowledged and authorized teachers of the Romish communion for its true import; and in doing so he has endeavored to adopt the sentiment of the Roman orator, Ne quid falsi dicere audeat, ne quid veri non audeat ;1 at the same time hoping for the suffrage of every conscientious Romanist to the maxim that Veritas nihil veretur, nisi abscondi.2

[blocks in formation]


Notes on Chapter I.-The existence of Purgatory-Purgatory any third
place-Hell, Purgatory, Heaven-Abraham's bosom-The situation
of Purgatory-Design of Purgatory-Inmates of Purgatory-Nature
of the punishment-Its extreme severity-Its duration-Means of its
mitigation-Its nature as a satisfaction-The efficacy of Masses as a

satisfaction-Purgatory a means of grace-Consolation experienced by
souls in Purgatory-Privileged exceptions from purgatorial durance—
Decree of the Council of Florence-Effect of sacerdotal absolution-
Penance and extreme unction-Romish form of absolution-Inability
of souls in Purgatory either to merit or sin-Purgatory an article of
faith-Consequences to those who reject it-Illustration from the Hin-
doo code-Absurd notions of Pope Gregory and St. Bernard-Opinion
respecting Pope Gregory and his works-Papal authorities recom-
mended by Mr. C. Butler too limited

Pp. 11-28



Grounds upon which Papists support the doctrine of Purgatory-Speech
of Judas Maccabeus-The Book of Maccabees not canonical-Testi-
monies against the inspiration of the Apocryphal writings-Examina-
tion of the passage-Object of the contribution ordered by Judas-
No sacrifice for the dead mentioned in Scripture-Inference from the
Law respecting undiscovered murder-Idolatry being a mortal sin,
not punishable in Purgatory-Interpretation of the Douay Version-
The passage not corroborative of Purgatory-Old Testament writers
knew nothing of the doctrine-alleged authorities in the New Testa-
ment—Matt. v. 25, 26—Papal interpretation—True meaning derived
from the context-Scriptural application and paraphrase-Scriptural
use of the word "until" exemplified in Psalm cx. 1-Inutility of
prayers and masses from the nature of the case-Patristical interpre-
tations of the text-Ambrose, Jerome, Chrysostom, Augustine, Hilary,
Theophylact, Fulgentius, Bede, Maldonatus, Natalis Alexander-
Matt. xii. 32-Papistical interpretation-Obvious meaning of the text,
irreconcileable with the avowed object of Purgatory-Necessary
inference from its application to that doctrine-Explanation of our
Lord's allusion by an English divine-Opinions of the early Fathers,
-Hilary, Ambrose, Jerome, Augustine, Chrysostom-Pope Gregory
the author of the papal interpretation-Fallacy of his reasoning-The
passage given up by Bellarmine-1 Cor. iii. 10-15-Foundation and
superstructure of the Christian Church-Test of the materials-Sense
attached to the text by Romanists-Its true import-Proverbial signi-
fication of the expression "saved so as by fire"-Examples—Analysis
of the entire passage-Allegories insufficient to establish a doctrine-
The passage not only allegorical, but a simile-Contradictory opinions
of the Fathers-Romanists bound to admit nothing without their una-

Authority of the early Fathers-Few errors in doctrine before the

Council of Nice, A.D. 325-Real value of Patristical testimony-

Scriptures the only unerring guide-Testimonies to this effect from

the Fathers themselves—Jerome, Clement of Alexandria, Origen,

Basil, Ambrose, Augustine, Chrysostom-Amount of Patristical testi-

mony adduced in favor of Purgatory-Early opinions respecting a

probatory fire-Origin of the notion-Texts of Scripture adduced in

support of it-Opinions of the primitive Fathers on the subject-

Origen, A.D. 230-His opinion incompatible with the Romish Purga-

tory-Similar passages from Ambrose-Bellarmine confesses that he

does not speak of Purgatory-Lactantius, A.D. 306-Basil, a.d. 370—

Ambrose, A.D. 374-Augustine, A.D. 395-Theodoret, A.D. 423—Hil-

ary, A.D. 430—This opinion of a probatory fire now rejected-Passages

of the Fathers which have been adduced in favor of Purgatory-Ter-

tullian, A.D. 200—Romish version and interpretation of a passage from

this Father-Scope of his argument-He is speaking of Hades, not

Purgatory-Correct version of the passage-Romish commentator

thereon-Quotations from Tertullian opposed to Purgatory-Origen,

A.D. 230-Literal translation of a passage from his comment on Jere-

miah-Interpolation of Romish writers-Import of the passage, if

compared with a subsequent remark in the same homily-The refe-

rence plainly to the Day of Judgment-Punishment mentioned, but

not satisfaction—God himself, not Purgatory, the consuming fire-

Citations from Origen himself, subversive of the popish sense of the

passage He had no idea of a Purgatory-St. Cyprian, A.D. 248—

Romish interpretation of a passage in his writings—The passage

really alludes to the ecclesiastical punishment of the lapsed Christians

-Early persecution caused frequent lapses into idolatry-Libellatic

Christians-Punishment of the lapsed-Tenets of Novatus and Nova-

tian condemned by a Council at Rome, A.D. 250-Letters of recon-

ciliation - Cyprian's argument-Admission of Romish writers—

Conjecture of Bishop Pearson, note-The passage not fully quoted by

the Romanists-Citations from Cyprian, proving his ignorance of

Purgatory-St. Basil, A.D. 370-Passage cited from him not very

intelligible-It clearly refers, however, to the punishment of the

Israelites in this world-Proofs that Basil had no notion of a Purga-

tory-Gregory of Nyssa, A.D. 371-Two citations which are said to

favor Purgatory-Supposed heresy of Gregory-These passages pro-

[ocr errors]
« PoprzedniaDalej »