Imatges de pÓgina


^^msmul- question this Jesus, Son of the Eternal, founded

SL*^OVrn as the Christian Church. Beyond all question, He t:o this His Church, the guidance of the Holy Spirit; *\ Presence and guidance; gave them power to teach, and in a<s ^^***~i't\xa.l sense, to forgive sins, also to heal, to bind and loose t.V*e conscience and moral evil and its relief were cons . • beyond all question, if we can believe anything in the '?^Tts» Christ's words were: "All power is given unto Me ^ "Saven and in earth": and again, "As the Father gave Me, so I %>Ne. \mto you. Go therefore, and disciple all nations, and know ftwX 1 am with you unto the end of time. Whatever ye bind on earth shall be bound in heaven, and whatever ye loose on earth, shall be free in heaven!" Beyond question, if Christ were anything out of the common, and more than human— as, of course, I firmly believe—He was in His humblest and poorest moments of life, on the cross, a prophet, priest and king. Yea King of Kings. Did He convey and impart all of these, His own powers to His apostles? And did they in their turn convey and impart them all to their immediate followers, the first ecclesiastics, as differentiated from the apostles, the leaders, bishops and priests of the Church? Or did He, Christ, impart and convey to the apostles and these again to their successors only a part of His powers and functions in this world? He said, "All power is given unto Me"—and "As the Father hath given Me, so give I unto you." And those who accept these words as true, have never questioned the true powers of the Church. Did Christ Himself claim or exercise any God-ship or God power in this world, except so far as we suppose a supernatural power of healing, in the work of miracles? Did He ever, even among His own disciples, exercise or claim any force other than that of a superior spiritual power; an energy of light and moral greatness? Did He ever attempt to rule even His disciples, as the princes of this world have ever attempted to rule their subjects? Above all, did He ever claim any of the honors such as are supposed to be due to princes, and such as are accorded to princes of this world? Still more, did He ever dream of claiming in His lifetime the power and honors of princedom among peoples who were not His disciples, and did not voluntarily follow Him, and acknowledge His superior wisdom? And if, in certain sublime moments of His great anguish, as before Pilate, and on the cross, certain utterances of a great and world-wide and divine power escaped Him, were they not the utterances of the Supreme Deity that dwelt within Him? Superhuman utterances born of the pressure of dm* sorrow as it pressed down upon Him and strained even the holy of holies of His own divine and human soul? Now, if Jesus, the founder of modern civilization did not Himself claim princely position, power, or the devotions and honors supposed to be due to the princes of this world, and if, while among' us, He gave utterance only in profound and crushed moments to a greatness, a divinity which was within Him, and did not make even this the basis of any compulsory devotions as to a prince or king: and if, whatever expression of this higher grade of greatness and power in Himself, came, as beyond question it did come, from His innate Divinity, did He convey to His apostles, or did they convey to their successors this, Christ's own princely power which came solely of His supernatural being, and belonged to and inhered in Him as God and not as man? Did He convey His Godhead, in a word, to His apostles, individually, and they to their successors? And even if He did make gods of them for all time, as He Himself was God, even then, did this imply that they, anyone or all of them, to all eternity should be His equals in honor and being, and even if this were possible, which is the silliest dream, did He come to found a kingdom like unto the princedoms of this world based upon an acknowledged prince of power of the Mood and commanding obedience, reverence, love, etc., by virtue of that power; or was His princedom ever a spiritual and supreme force and reason: and did He come to make slaves of men or to inspire them with a free spirit of love, of charity, of brotherhood and of boundless joy?

Admitting all that our faith claims as regards the Deity of Jesus, and that all honor is due Him, as all power was given Him, it is plain from nature as from all Christian history, that He did not convey His deity to His apostles individually or collectively, nor did they pretend to convey what they never possessed. The fact that not one of the popes of the Church has ever claimed or exercised this power, is evidence enough of our proposition.

The simple historic fact that Jesus never used His deity to command the honors of human princedom, but always used His human and Divine power to inspire and win the voluntary love and honor and worship of His followers, is evidence enough, even if v CHURCH AND STATE. 371

Ar^T* taught them by word of mouth, that they, in all "follow in His footsteps, and not seek or claim honV » those that their divine Master Himself claimed.

*V ^/ tlnere is no real honor in the prostration of a slave,

trftfc . * **Onor that God Almighty, or God in Christ Jesus, or the is teSerent of God in Christ Jesus, can ever claim or enjoy, ^^Vuntary honor paid by a soul inspired of heaven's light ^ » and this, anywhere and at all times, is so vastly superior

tat mere honors of hired slaves, that the angels of God rejoice s\*ch honor is won from the soul of a redeemed man. \t "^Jas natural for the Roman Church to build its conceptions of princedoms and honors from the toppling thrones of their ancient pagan kings. It was natural for the first Christian kings to attempt to add to the simple honors of the bishops of Rome those trappings of princeship which belonged to themselves, and which Had belonged to their predecessors, but from the heart of Christ it never came, and while His spirit is uppermost, it can never hold.

The Christian Church is not, and must not pretend to be Roman or Romanised—but Christlike and God-ised, and human and world-wide and spiritually divine. There can be be no worldwide ambition to spread the manners of Roman rulers over the world, but there can be and there will be a world impulse to spread the light of the love of Christ over the world, including Rome.

I have thought it best, perhaps necessary, to clear the old fields of rubbish before attempting to plant the simple truth in the heart of the modern world. Not only in Rome and in Italy, but tr* all the European nations and princedoms did the Church have forced upon her the ideas of monarchy. In looking back upon the ancient nations, other than the Hebrew, it is true she would have found that the spiritual priesthood had always been subject to the temporal direction; but in Christian Europe from Constantine to Charlemagne, there was no desire on the part of Christian princes, except now and then, to force their control upon the Christian priesthood; but on the contrary, a desire on the part of temporal rulers to decorate with gifts and princely honors, the ruling bishops and popes of the Church. It is true that when bishops and popes attempted to coerce any temporal prince beyond the spiritual loyalty of such prince, said prince rebelled, and there have been no end of the follies of such attempted coercions from the days of Gregory the Great to Leo XIII; but they have always, invariably, reacted in disaster to the spiritual power of die Church and always must do so as long as any pretension of temporal power is presumed upon by ecclesiastics in any part of the world; but in the yielding of the Christian ecclesiastics of the European peoples to the blandishments of temporal princes, in the acceptance of gifts and honors from the same, I hold that in even instance the Churchmen have blundered; that is, they have forgotten, to some extent, the fine, exalted and heavenly morality of Jesus and have allowed themselves, to a certain extent, to become the servants of men, rather than the servants of Christ. It is not to Romanize Christ and His priests that Christ died and founded the Church, but to Christianize Rome and the world. Through a failure to understand this, alike on the part of the Church and the temporal princes of the Christian Era,—and by Christianizing Rome, or the world, or any man, or nation, or prince, or rukr of any sort or degree I do not mean simply the baptizing of such men or nations, but the teaching and inspiring in them the principles of Christ before baptizing them, and inspiring in their hearts the love of Christ, and the love of mankind;—through the failure, I say, to understand the two spheres of spiritual power and the temporal power, on the part of both representatives of each sphere of power, there have come, in my judgment, all the divisions of the Church in its relations to the State, from the days of Constantine to the days of Pius X, who, spite of his undeniable modesty and goodness, presumes to dream that he cannot be the true head of the Church, unless he is at the same time prince of some domain with all the trappings and so-called honors of princedom.

Most Rev. Holy Father of the souls of Christendom, believe me, it is an error to think so, or to feel so, and further, believe me that the Church, the world over, will lose more and more, and be persecuted more and more, until this error, so strong in the Roman Hierarchy, is crushed, or pounded, or persuaded out of the very inmost being of the Church of God.

It is a desperate fight that we are engaged in, but nation after nation will fall away till the highest ecclesiastical representatives of the Church of Christ see and admit the power of Christ and of His Spirit to rule exclusively in all their thoughts and actions, ^ CHURCH AND STATE. 373

I ,tK>w r°m their innermost ambition all thoughts of tem

T^rt*^**^* for a servant that he be as his master, loved and ^SU*0^ sPirit of the Master, that dwelleth in him; but to

^^^ence on the ground of temporal princedom, is the acme, huu^^^3^ °t false ambition, and the ruin of an ecclesiastic and tctl*t*f ^^axit of Christ. Leo XIII did far better without the

^T^l power than he would have done with it. v. » f^ad history, the vitiating and subtle influence of the amw«v oi the Church for temporal power, is at the heart of all 'wretched abortions of the crusades. It was always to regain or to restore some physical object, to further some ecclesiastical arr&fttion, that the princes and rulers of the nations, the noble selfsacrificing heroes of the middle ages of Christian faith, set out on their ill-starred crusades. The attitude of the Church toward the Mohammedan nations, in those days, was as false and hollow and erroneous as it is in these days. Mohammed was not a Christian, it is true, but to batter the brains out of his followers on that account, or because of superior military prowess, or because they had come into possession of some of the choice or even sacred places of the old world, was as un-Christian as Mohammed's own action and teaching. If you expect to make a Christian of a man by knocking him in the head, or if you expect to further your own piety, or the true rewards of piety by such actions, you are eternally mistaken.

If in the last sixteen hundred years, the Catholic Church had given half the time to the Apostolic work of making men Christians indeed, that it has given to the making of Creeds, to such misguided, interfering efforts as the Crusades, and to the contaminating ambitions incident to the pretensions of temporal power, the world itself would be so full of loyal Catholics at this hour that no mere mouthing Protestant, Freemason, or other would think of promoting such dastardly acts as our AmericanSpanish war, or our latest infamy, the stealing of a State from a Republican union of States, under the guise of preventing bloodshed and promoting peace. It is a long series of egregious blunders that we are hinting at, blunders growing out of the Church's false conception of its own powers, and the limitations of her real powers. As far and as closely as the Church represents and follows the spirit of Her Master, she is impregnable, almighty, irre

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