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to promote that cause wbilst he is a catholic, can be be an honest friend to a protestant government, and to protestantismi-It is written, “a man cannot serve two masters.”—It is not easy to conceive, how a person can promote the interest of protestantism and catholicism at the same time ;—this could only be done by a man, who had the same regard for one as the other,—by one, who held truth and error in the same estimation, whichi, according to the authority of Christ, is impossible.
Notwithstanding the reputed alteration, there still seems to be a close connection between the Irish catholics, and the head of the Roman church, and much deference appears to be paid to him in matters concerning their religion-Now, if the alteration and amendment in their religion, received the sanction and approbation of his holiness, we have another very striking sign of the times, and another proof of the power of protestantism, whose beautiful rays must have been reflected from Ireland, and have struck with force the Vatican at Rome.—England ought, therefore, to perse · vere in the straight path ot lier duty, without fear and apprehension —she ought with the greatest vigilance and activity to defend the church of Christ, and to propagate in every place, where she is able, the pure doctrine of the gospel, in perfect good will and charity, but at the same time, with the spirit, and zeal, and courage, which on every occasion distinguished its author, and his disciples ;-and then, she will be highly instrumental in hastening the downfall of the great apostacy, and with it, many other obstacles that at present stand in the way of the truth, and prevent “its covering the earth as the waters cover “ the sea.”—
The ignorance and vanity of men, intermixed with a considerable regard for their own temporal interest, have occasioned them to make alterations in, and additions to the plain and simple religion which the deity has given them ;--the sincere observance of which, would ensure their peace and happiness :-but, this innovation, bad and dangerous as it will prove, is exceeded by the new doctrine of those, who assert that all religions are equally good ;which is the same thing as saying, that a system of religion, formed according to the suggestions of human passions and weakness, is equal to the religion that was dictated by the goodness and power of God ;—or, that the wisdom of the creature, as far as it regarded a perfect religious institution, was equal to the wisdom of the Creator :-and ther, follows their corollary from this proposition;—that it is unjustifiable to interfere in matters of religion between a man and his God, and that an exclusion of people on account of religious opinions from certain rights and privileges, peculiar to a constitution, of which a different religion is a prominent part, is unjust and
oppressive.-Hence, motives of delicacy and liberality, restrain persons of this opinion from interfering with any false systems of religion ; and yet, they would give men, who belong to them, the power of interfering with their own religion, which they believe to be true. It is a curious circumstance that the catholics should voluntarily come forward, and make a solemn asseveration, that, “they would not exercise “any privilege to which they are, or may be "entitled, to disturb and weaken the protes"tant religion, and protestant government in “this kingdom.”—This declaration is evidently made under the full persuasion and belief, that they could, it they chose, when in posession of the rights and privileges, which they demand with so much importunity, exercise them to the disadvantage and injury of the protestant church and government of this kingdom ;--otherwise, why take an oath to this effect?-Why take an oath to refrain from doing that, which it was impossible for them to do?-Who wishes the imbecility of diseased old age, to swear that it will not exert the vigour, and power, and strength of healthy robust manhood ?-What court of equity ever exacted an oath from a person, when he had recovered his rights and property, that he would not enjoy the one, and exercise the other as he thought proper 2-If such a man exceeded the bounds of justice, the strong arm of law would restrain bis violence;-and if he was licentiously or tyrannically inclined, it is a doubt, whether a voluntary, or a constrained oath, would be sufficient to curb his inclinations.—It is a leading feature in the character of human pature to love power ;-and it is too well known from experience, that the abuse of it, notwithstanding many previous promises and solemn declarations, is quite as likely to follow its acquisition, as a moderate and becoming use of it. Grant the catholic his claims, and he promises on oath, not to disturb either your religion or your government;-he promises on a solemn oath, not to abstaiu from what he considers wrong, but he promises to abstain from that which he believes to be right; namely, the subversion of the protestant faith.—To make a solemn declaration,—to take an oath, and call the sovereign of the universe to attest it, that you will not act according to the direction of your religion, which you believe to come from that great and awful being bimself, is such an act of impiety, as can be traced only to him, who is constantly opening “his mouth in blas“phemy against God," and for his blasphemy and falsehood, is sentenced to “perdition.”—
These remarks have been made with a view to promote the cause of pure christianity-to expose the errors and corruptions of the catholic apostacy—and to shew that instead of granting indulgences and favours to it, every christian ouglit to exert himself, by means of the weapons afforded him in the sacred writings to overturn and destroy it.-Idolaters, false worshippers, and apostate christians, ought not to possess the power of doing mischief in the church of God.—Exclusion is here justified by the example of the deity, who still excludes his own peculiar people, on account of their transgressions and errors, from the rights and privileges, and unexampled favors and blessings, they once enjoyed. Wherever, men worship Jehovah, the God of Israel, the God of christians, the God and father of Jesus Christ, in spirit and in truth, according to the directions afforded them by the inspired volume,—there, no pains, no penalties, no excluding principle can be justifiable.—“God, is no “respecter of persons ; but in every nation he “that feareth him, and worketh righteousness, “is accepted with bim”;--the particular mauner or place, in which, this pure and faithful service is pectormed, will make no difference in the case.—Elijah in the face of all Israel and the idolatrous priests of Baal, offering up his beautiful address of supplication to heavenand the man, who,“ without guile”, poured out in secresy in his garden, the effusions of a heart devoted to the service of the true God, received an approvirg mark from him they worshipped, that their prayers were heard, and that their conduct was upright.-Interference in the religious exercises of such men, would indeed be wrong ;-and excluding them from any rights and privileges, or from situations