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if the Dissenters of Derby had been as true then, as at the AntiMaynooth Conference, if they had acted up to their declarations on that memorable occasion, if they had not allowed their jealousy of the Establishment, and of all establishments, to swallow up their righteous horror at the impending establishment of Popery, Sir Digby Mackworth would have been at the head of the poll, and have been returned. I would call upon my Dissenting brethren, to lay aside, for a little time, at least, their opposition to Establishments. Surely you would prefer the Church of England to the Church of Rome, as an establishment; the one has a claim to it, and the other has not ; the one has been tolerant and gentle, while the other would soon have you in the dungeons of the Inquisition, or the flames of Smithfield, if it had the power. Retain your honest principles, on the question of establishments, if they be so, (and I have no right to say they are otherwise,) for I never want union in concessions—I want union in principle, or none at all; but do let them go into the background, till the great question in the foreground is decided. Do not let us imitate the lion and the bear, quarrelling about the body of the fawn, and growling and snarling at each other, and wasting each other's strength, until the sly fox stealthily came in, caught away the fawn, and the prey was gone, while they were disputing.
My Christian friends, our division is our weakness. We might learn wisdom, even from the tactics of war. We read, that among the Jews there were two factions against each other, in bitterest animosity; they filled Jerusalem with terror. But when the Roman besiegers were seen applying their scaling ladders to the wall, or endeavouring to batter down their ramparts, they forgat their mutual animosities, and marched side by side, to beat back the common enemy; and then they returned to their intestine conflict. Now may we not imitate them in all but their return to animosity ? When we have the Roman, (for it is the Roman still,) with his scaling ladders against our Constitution, and his secret Jesuitical mines underneath the Protestant ramparts of our noble old Constitution, whilst we have traitors within, who are willing and anxious to open the door to the besiegers without, oh! shall we not cease our party-strife and struggle, and agree to mount the walls, and fling back the intruder with all our might? Then, if we must do it, let us resume our intestine discords ; but I verily believe, that when we have won the victory together, we shall get to know and love one another so much better, that we shall give up our discords ; and though I do not think you will make us Dissenters, I think we shall make you Churchmen, at the last. But that, I can honestly say, is not my aim and design; my aim and design, before God, is this: that we may be united before the common enemy. We disagree about Establishments, about Episcopacy, or Presbyterianism, or Independency; I do not call them little matters ; to me they are so important, that I cannot and would not give them up, at whatever expense; but I do not consider them vital mattersfor I consider the truth as it is in Jesus,” the one atonement, the single oblation, the only way for a sinner to come to God, as above all. Shall we, then, in our contests about non-essentials, let essentials be endangered ? Shall we allow our differences with each other to
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blind us to our differences with Rome, which are almost as "wide as: the poles asunder." For although I may be told, “ You hold the primitive creeds, and Rome holds them as well,” I answer, She holds them, and holds them not-we hold them in sincerity-; she holds them, to bury them under her own Articles of the Council of Trent, and of the Creed:of Pope Pius ; and I must say of the Councils, and of the manifold traditions of Rome—“ They have taken away my Lord, and I know not where they have laid him." ;
My Christian friends, be assured of this—that if we Protestants do not agree; the agreeing party will be sure to win. Rome is agreed ; and
many within our Church, and the Latitudinarian, and the so-called Liberal, and the seeming Infidel, are agreed with Rome. They are agreed against us ;, and if we are not agreed against them they will obtain the victory. Be assured of this, the question whether Popery shall be-endowed in Ireland, or whether we shall maintain our Protestant standing there, is not a question of the Church of England, of Episcopalianism, or of Dissent,-it is a question, whether or not this. nation shall identify itself with Antichrist, or whether it shall keep the spirit of Protestantism which yet remains to it. And if it be true, (as no man who studies the Apocalypse,, phecies of Daniel, with an enlightened mind; and who subscribes to our Articles, and adopts our Homilies, and admits our Canons, can doubt,) that Popery is the predicted apostasy, the “Antichrist” of Revelation, the “little. horn” of Daniel, the mystery of iniquity," which has worked, and is working, and will work, till Christ destroys ity--that it is that “mother of abominations,” to which the ten-kings shall give their strength, (and they who give it shall share her doom, because they have shared her abominations,) that it is that“ beast the mark of whom some bear on their forehead-open Romanistsand others bear in their right hand-covert abettors of Rome, of which we have so many, in these days, then it is not a question between Episcopalians and Non-Episcopalians, between endowments and nonendowments, but it is a question between national existence, or national ruin: it is a question between sharing Rome's destruction, or escaping the vials of wrath, which shall be poured out upon her and upon her abettors; it is a question whether we shall submit to Christ or to Antichrist ; it is a question, whether the blood of our martyred forefathers is to be trampled in the dust, and their ashes scattered to the winds of heaven, or we are to preach as they preached, to protest as they protested, and if needs be, to bleed as they bled, rather than have peace with Antichrist.
My Christian friends, I speak the words of truth and soberness. I know they will be despised by the worldly wise man, who thinks he has all wisdom, but is a fool in the sight of God, (for he knows not Scripture, by the guidance of the Spirit, and by comparing it with Scripture,)—the man who brands all history as an old almanack," and perhaps would do the same with the Bible, if he dared. I have often observed, when I have been touching upon Protestant sentiments, and there is a whole rank of reporters before me, that they have not the moral courage or resolution to report me, but that their pens all drop from their hands. My Christian friends, I have a practical illustraVOL. VIII.- December, 1846.
New Series, No. 12.
tion before my eyes, and I could not avoid mentioning it. I know very well that the honourable gentlemen, (and I do not undervalue their place and their importance; I wish they always felt its responsibility, and acted under it, I know they will go and traduce me in their newspapers to-morrow, and they are quite welcome to do so; I am too well accustomed to newspaper abuse, in Manchester and elsewhere, not to know its true value; and I only trust in God, that I may always regard what is written about me in heaven, and care little about what is written concerning me on earth. I would not have adverted to the point, however, but as another illustration of the sad apathy in which such strong and truthful sentiments are regarded, by a lukewarm and indifferent public, and especially by our strong partisans, who give their complexion to most of our newspapers,
-so that they are seldom to be regarded as independent organs. But to return from this digression, I do assure you, my Christian friends, while I do not undervalue the exposure of the individual errors of the Church of Rome -while I do not undervalue an attempt to attack her on the grounds of political wisdom and expediency-while I do not undervalue attempts to set forward the simple truth, in order that we may bring the Romanist to the light of it, (for this is our bounden duty,) I think we should greatly narrow the ground of controversy, and greatly strengthen too, by insisting on the point that Popery is, (as her own creeds and canons show, as our martyred Reformers declared her to be, and our own Constitution once recognised her as being,) the great Antichristian apostasy, which, to be friends with, is to be enemies with Christ, and which to unite with, is to unite against him. I trust that our senators will not be ashamed to avow this, in their places in Parliament. There was a man who once did so, (may God give him health again to go and testify it,) and Captain Gordon was not ashamed to declare it, in the midst of the House of Commons. And therefore, my Christian friends, I call upon all those who love the truth, whether they be Dissenters or Churchmen, to unite at the present crisis, to return Members to Parliament, who will oppose to the uttermost all concessions to Rome, and endeavour to bring back our national Christianity, in its original purity and strength.
But there is another question impending over us, as well as the endowment of the Popish priesthood in Ireland, which I cannot but regard with the deepest apprehension, and with the most solemn dread; and that is, a revived attempt (we have every reason to believe,) to give us a national education, divorced from our national religion, an education simply and purely secular, divorcing the schoolmaster and religion altogether. Alas! let us divorce the schoolmaster and religion, and we shall divorce the prosperity, and the peace, and the righteousness of England, even what remains to us. I hold in my hand an extract from a book, recently published in France by the Abbé Guam, a leading Romanist, in that now Romanizing nation, for it is turning much to Romanism again ; it is called his Catechism, and consists of eight volumes, containing an immense mass of singular information. He gives an account of the proportions of crime in France, (where the plan has been carried out, of divorcing the Bible and the schoolmaster,) in the different ranks of society, which he distributes under three
heads-the uneducated, the partially educated, and the highly educated; and on the strength of a Government Report, he gives this as a result: there are among the uneducated but as five criminals to seven in the partially educated, and to fifteen in the highly educated. I have no doubt that this is a genuine document, because it is based upon a Government return; at least; we are accustomed to deem such documents to be the best authority. And what lesson meets us ? A lesson, which should thrill through every Englishman's heart, who regards the welfare of his country :—to educate without Christianity, is to educate to deeper criminality : is to elevate man from the brute, but to approximate him proportionately to the fiend; it is to add subtlety to his malevolence, and power to his evil designs; it is to make him the more plausible, the more sly, the more clever, the more dazzling, the more accomplished villain. The most intellectual place in the universe, next to heaven, is hell.
My Christian friends, I speak boldly and plainly; I do protest against the idolatry of intellectualism, which is substituted for the religion of the Lord Jesus Christ ; and whether we set up in Christ's temple the image of secular education, or the image of the Virgin Mary, we are equally idolaters, before a jealous God. Does intellectual intelligence, and subtlety, and cleverness, make hell happy, or true, or just, or pure, or full of love to God? Will not intellectual culture, without religion, make man, who is “shapen in sin, and conceived in iniquity," cultivate the seeds of iniquity, which are within him ? It has been tried what philosophical culture and illumination can do, without religion ; "the goddess of reason was set up. It has been tried ; but instead of producing a paradise of purity, a millennium of harmony, a temple of love-heaven on earth, it produced a wilderness of corruption, a reign of terror, a theatre of animosity-hell on earth.
Divorce Christianity from our education ! and who are the advocates of so monstrous an absurdity ? On the one hand, we have the latitudinarian, and the sceptic, and the heedless statesman, who only want to keep peace, and sacrifice principle ; but it is a hollow peace ; it is like the peace of a volcano, while its elements are gathering strength to come forth with increased vigour. And who are the other advocates ? Some of our semi-Romanists, within our own Church. I pray you, mark the instructive fellowship ; mark—mark the combination of opposite extremes. The Latitudinarian says" Away with your Bible and religion from the school, while the schoolmaster presides, because your religion is the bone of contention, and the apple of discord. All would be sweet harmony, if you put out the Bible, which is the great source of discord. There is no need for education to be blended with the dogmas of your creed, or the peculiarities of your sect.” The High extreme Churchmen, (nay, the Anglo-Romanists—that is the best name for them.) the AngloRomanists reply—“We quite agree with you ; the schoolmaster has nothing to do with the Bible ; it is too sacred and hallowed a thing for the unhallowed hands of laymen to touch ; no, leave it to the clergy, leave it to the priesthood, and they will take care to teach it their own way.” Rome comes in, and says—“I quite agree with
both ; get the Bible out of the school ; put out the candle, for I love darkness, and I shall prosper best in the dark.” Romanists, Latitudinarians, and bigots concur in their advice. But there is a fourth party, my Christian friends ; these are the sound-hearted, Protestant parents of England ; and they say—“We forbid the separation.”
My Christian friends, let us have a plan of education for all, but let us have no coercion into a hollow, heartless union. No ; let the Government do the next best thing to doing what it ought, and supporting the National Church, as a National Church ; let her help all to educate their children separately, and not endeavour to force upon them tenets, which they know to be wrong ; let her prevent children being employed in factories, till they know how to read; but never let any Administration try to force the honest-hearted Protestants of England to let their children sit down with the children of the Infidel and the godless, bibleless and hopeless, with a master, who dare not pray with them,—with a master, who, if he come up to the approved model of the Vicar of Leeds, I do not hesitate to say, would be a godless man, in his official capacity, for he is not to know anything of God, or Christ, or eternity, in the teaching of his children. And what would you give for the Christianity of that schoolmaster? What would you give for his honesty and morality, that would consent for a pitiful bit of bread, to leave his Bible, bis prayer, and his Saviour, and everything which distinguishes him, as a follower of Jesus, outside of the schoolhouse door, as a suit of clothes, to be put off, when he enters, and to be put on, when he goes back again to his home? The man might, in name, be a High Churchman, if you will, but in spirit and in conduct, he would be virtually an Infidel.
Oh ! my friends, this is in reality, the monstrous proposition, when stripped of its garniture and its plausibility: that the schoolmaster should never pray with his children, never mention Jesus to them,
“suffer the little children to come unto Christ,” never point them to heaven above, or to hell beneath, never guard them from lying, or warn them from stealing, or teach them brotherly love on true principle. And where would be morality without motivés ? Where would be the eonduct, without the doctrines ? Where would be the trees without the roots ? Where would be the light, without the sun ? Oh ! the foolishness of the men, who, in their worldly wisdom, would be wiser than God, and divide what God has joined together.
But the clergy and the ministers are to give instruction, at after hours, and at other times. Is this “training up a child in the way he should go ?” Is this inculcation by “line upon line, and precept upon precept ?” I have had as much experience in schoolwatching, and school-managing, as many who have written upon the subject, though I make no boast of it ; and this I give, as my deliberate conclusion, in the face of whatever others may have said ; I have invariably found, that whatever may be the excellency of the clergyman, and however great his carefulness and industry, the schoolmaster makes, or mars the school. I hesitate not to say this, in the face of my Reverend brethren around me; and I am sure they will subscribe to it. The minister ought to attend ; his attendance is needful, and his training and teaching important; he should hold the