The Southern Sentinel and Herald of Liberty, vol. 2

The Southern Sentinel and Herald of Liberty, Vol. 2 (1895-96)

1895

June 1895

“Purifying Politics” The Southern Sentinel and Herald of Liberty 2, 6, pp. 8-10.

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A. T. JONES

SPEAKING of an amendment to the Constitution that should purify American politics by giving the religion of Jesus Christ a place in the Government, Dr. McAllister says:— SSHL June 1895, page 8.1

“Finally, the proposed Amendment will draw to the administration of the Government such men as the law of God requires,—not the reckless, the unprincipled, the profane but able men, who fear God and hate covetousness.”—Christian Statesman, Dec. 27, 1888. SSHL June 1895, page 8.2

This thing has been tried several times, and always with the same result, namely, to make corruption more corrupt. Given, human nature what it is, and make profession of religion a qualification for governmental favor, or political preference, and the inevitable result will always be that thousands will profess the required religion expressly to obtain political preferment, and for no other reason;and so to dishonest ambitionis added deliberate hypocrisy. SSHL June 1895, page 8.3

CONSTANTINE’S EXAMPLE

The first to employ this method was he to whom can be traced almost every ill that Christianity has suffered (this last one being by no means the least),—Constantine. He made the bishop of Rome a prince of the empire, and clothed the inferior bishops with such power that they not only ruledas princes, but imitated the princes in pride, luxury, worldly pomp, and hateful haughtiness,—imitated the princes in these, and imitated the emperor in persecuting with relentless vigor all who differed with them in faith. And the bishop of Rome, above all in rank, held the supremacy also in pride, arrogance, and profusion of luxury, to such a degree that one of most eminent of the heathen writers exclaimed, either in envy or indignation, “Make me bishop of Rome and I will be a Christian.” SSHL June 1895, page 9.1

Nor were the governmental favors of Constantine confined to the bishops; they extended to all orders; and by the promise of a white garment, and twenty pieces of gold to every convert, there was secured in a single year the baptism of no fewer than twelve thousand men, besides a proportionate number of women and children. See Gibbon, “Decline and Fall of Rome,” chap. 20, par. 17. And the inevitable consequence was that “formalismsucceeded faith,and religion fled from a station among the rulers of Christendom to shelter in her native scenes among the suffering and the poor.” Was politics purified there? No! religion was corrupted and faith debased; and amidst and by it all, were taken the widest and most rapid strides of the Church of Rome toward that fearful height of power and depth of degradation which was the astonishment and the shame of the world. SSHL June 1895, page 9.2

A LESSON FROM LOUIS XIV

Another notable instance was Louis XIV. of France. The early part of his reign was a time of much license; “but in his old age he became religious; and he determined that his subjects should be religious too. He shrugged his shoulders and knitted his brows if he observed at his levee, or near his dinner table; any gentleman who neglected the duties enjoined by the church. He rewarded piety with blue ribands, pensions, invitations to Marlé, governments, and regiments. Forthwith Versailles became in everything but dress, a convent. The pulpits and confessionals were surrounded by swords and embroidery. The marshals were much in prayer; and there was hardly one among the dukes and peers who did not carry good little books in his pocket, fast during lent, and communicate at Easter. Madame de Maintenon, who had a great share in the blessed work, boasted that devotion had become quite the fashion.” SSHL June 1895, page 9.3

And was politics purified?—With a vengeance! We read on: “A fashion indeed it was; and like a fashion it passed away. No sooner had the old king been carried to St. Denis than the whole court unmasked. Every man hastened to indemnify himself, by the excess of licentiousness and impudence, for years of mortification. The same persons who, a few months before, with meek voices and demure looks, had consulted divines about the state of their souls, now surrounded the midnight table, where, amidst the bounding champagne corks, a drunken prince, enthroned between Dubois and Madame de Parabere, hiccoughed out atheistical arguments and obscene jests. The early part of the reign of Louis XIV. had been a time of license; but the most dissolute men of that generation would have blushed at the orgies Regency.”—Macaulay’s Essay on Leigh Hunt. SSHL June 1895, page 9.4

THE PURITAN PARLIAMENT

But undoubtedly the most notable instance of all is that of the Puritan rule, of the Commonwealth of England. “It was solemnly resolved by Parliament “that no person shall be employed but such as the House shall be satisfied of his real godliness.” The pious assembly had a Bible lying on the table for reference.... To know whether a man was really godly was impossible. But it was easy to know whether he had a plain dress, lank hair, no starch in his linen, no gay furniture in his house; whether he talked through his nose, and showed the whites of his eyes; whether he named his children Assurance, Tribulation, and Maher-shalal-hash-baz; whether he avoided Spring Garden when in town, and abstained from hunting and hawking when in the country; whether he expounded hard scriptures to his troops of dragoons, and talked in a committee of ways and means about seeking the Lord. These were tests which could easily be applied. The misfortune was that they proved nothing. Such as they were, they were employed by the dominant party. And the consequence was that a crowd of impostors, in every walk of life, began to mimic and to caricature what were then regarded as the outward signs of sanctity.”—Ibid. Thus has it ever been, and thus will it ever be, where Governments, as such, attempt to propagate a religion. SSHL June 1895, page 10.1

LESSONS OF THE FIRST CENTURIES

Yet in the very face of these plainest dictates of pure reason, and these most forcible lessons of history, and in utter defiance of all the teaching of universal history itself, men, with that persistence which is born of the blindness of bigoted zeal, are working, and will continue to work, with might and main, to bring upon this dear land all this fearful train of disorders. Their movement reminds us of nothing so much as of these quack medicines that are so abundant, warranted to cure every ill that is known to the human body; while at the same time they will create a thousand ills that the human system has never known before. As with these, so with this movement to purify politics say making religious qualification a test for holding office; it is warranted to cure all the ills of the body politic, while, as anyone with half an eye can see, it bears in its hands a perfect Pandora’s box, wide open, to inflict its innumerable evils upon our country. And, as they will learn when it is too late, they will have no power to retain even hope. She herself will have flown away, and nothing remain but utter, irretrievable, awful ruin. SSHL June 1895, page 10.2

“The Pope’s Letter to the English People” The Southern Sentinel and Herald of Liberty 2, 6, pp. 12-15.

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POPE LEO XIII. has written a letter to “the English people who seek the kingdom of Christ in the unity of the faith.” All professed Christians seek the unity of the faith, and therefore the pope addresses all the professed Christians of England. SSHL June 1895, page 12.1

This is not the first time the Papacy has attempted to persuade the English people to return to the “unity of the [Roman Catholic] faith.” A notable attempt was made just three hundred and seven years ago. SSHL June 1895, page 12.2

In May, 1588, the Papacy sent one hundred and fifty messengers to England to argue with the English people and persuade them to return to the Roman Catholic faith. Twelve of these messengers were named after the twelve apostles, and others were named after the “saints.” SSHL June 1895, page 12.3

While these messengers were apostolic in name, and were commissioned by the professed vicar of Christ, Pope Sixtus V., they were not apostolic men armed only with the “sword of the Spirit, which is the Word of God,” but instead they were huge battle ships, armed and equipped with 2,088 galley slaves, 8,000 sailors, 20,000 soldiers, 2,650 cannon, 123,790 rounds of shot, and 517,500 pounds of powder. 1 SSHL June 1895, page 12.4

Beside being equipped with these ordinary death-dealing arguments of war, these papal messengers, which history calls the “Spanish Armada,” and which Roman Catholics were pleased to call the “Invincible Armada,” were equipped with still other papal arguments which were to be used to restore the unity of the faith in special cases, wherein the ordinary war arguments failed. These special arguments were the torture instruments 2 of the “Holy Office of the Inquisition;” and to insure the effective application of these arguments, Don Martin Allacon, Administrator and Vicar-General of the “Holy Office,” accompanied these satanic instruments of cruelty. SSHL June 1895, page 12.5

However, this Armada argument was but one in a series of papal measures intended to persuade the English people to return to their allegiance to the pope. Before sending the Armada, and with a view to weakening the loyalty of the English people to the queen of England as a preparation for it, the pope hurled a bull of excommunication against the queen, from which the following is extracted:— SSHL June 1895, page 12.6

“We do, out of the fullness of our apostolic power, declare the aforesaid Elizabeth, being a heretic, and a favorer of heretics, and her adherents in the matter aforesaid, to have incurred the sentence of anathema, and to be cut off from the unity of the body of Christ. And, moreover, we do declare her to be deprived of her pretended title to the kingdom aforesaid, and of all dominion, dignity, and privilege whatsoever.... And we do command and interdict all and every the noblemen, subjects, people, and others aforesaid, that they presume not to obey her or her monitions, mandates, and laws; and those that shall do the contrary, we do strike with the like sentence of anathema. 3 SSHL June 1895, page 12.7

This excommunication was followed by papal attempts to assassinate the queen, and then came the pope-blessed “Invincible Armada,” which was heroically fought and finally defeated and driven off by the much inferior navy of England. One of the stratagems used by the English to save themselves from the choice of a terrible death or unity with Rome. On the night of August 7, the English loaded eight ships with combustible material, smeared their masts with tar, sailed them near the Spanish fleet and then set them on fire, with the hoped-for result that the Spaniards took flight and sailed away, after which the English ships and a terrible storm completed their defeat and almost complete destruction. SSHL June 1895, page 12.8

WHY PRESENT TACTICS DIFFER

This is a brief description of the failure of an old papal method of securing the unity of the faith. But why does not Pope Leo XIII. now use the methods of his “infallible” predecessor, Pope Sixtus V.? Why don’t he send an Armada instead of an “Apostolic Letter”? It cannot be because the papacy has discarded these antichristian methods, for this is impossible, since Pope Leo X. “infallibly” condemned Luther’s proposition that “to burn heretics is contrary to the will of the Holy Ghost,” thus “infallibly” sanctioning the practice of burning heretics. Again, Pope Pius IX., the immediate predecessor of the present pope, as late as 1851, “infallibly” condemned the proposition, “The church has not the power of availing herself of force or any direct or indirect temporal power.” SSHL June 1895, page 13.1

No; the papacy has not disavowed and cannot disavow the methods used in the Middle Ages to secure the “unity of the faith,” without destroying the doctrine of “infallibility” which is has “infallibly” proclaimed. SSHL June 1895, page 13.2

Why is it then that Leo XIII. now speaks to the English people with “the deep tones of sympathetic feeling” 4 instead of with the deep-toned roar of Spanish cannon? SSHL June 1895, page 13.3

Since it cannot be because of a change in the papacy it must be because of a change in circumstances. Here lies the truth. When the Spanish Armada attempted the destruction of Protestantism in England, the papacy controlled the greater part of Western Europe. Spain was a great naval power, while England was much inferior in naval resources, with only about four million people. To-day the Papacy is shown of its temporal power, Spain though still Roman Catholic has lost its naval prestige, while England is the strongest naval power in the world. SSHL June 1895, page 14.1

THE OLD PRINCIPLE STILL ACTIVE

That Rome would do the same now as she did in the sixteenth century is also made evident by present papal practices in Catholic countries. In Roman Catholic South America Protestant missionaries are persecuted. And when the Methodist ministers of Chicago petitioned Satolli a few months ago to petition the pope to secure religious liberty for Protestant missionaries in that country, Satolli coolly replied by sending them a copy of the pope’s letter calling the governments and people of the world back into the Roman Catholic Church, thus in reality saying, “You can have religious freedom in Catholic South America only by joining the Catholic Church.” SSHL June 1895, page 14.2

Again, Protestant missionaries have been mobbed and driven from the Caroline Islands by Roman Catholics; and only a few weeks ago, Roman Catholic Spain peremptorily denied the request of the Government of the United States that American missionaries be allowed to return to the Caroline Islands. SSHL June 1895, page 14.3

And almost simultaneously with the pope’s letter to England, he sent one to Hungary commending the organization of a distinct Roman Catholic political party with the object of securing the repeal of liberal measures recently passed in that country, placing all religious denominations on an equal footing before the law. But the pope, acting in that country in accordance with his recent encyclical to America, demands “in addition to liberty, the favor of the laws and the patronage of the public authority.” SSHL June 1895, page 14.4

For these and other reasons that might be cited, the English people ought not to be deceived by this letter which the New York Sun’s Rome correspondent, himself a Roman Catholic says is written “with delicate tact, in the most flattering tone,” and “drawn at long sight” with “infinite ecclesiastical ambition.” It is the papal policy to use force when in power, and flattery when seeking power; and it is astonishing that so many Protestants are so credulous and short sighted as not to see in the flattery and the “deep-toned sympathy” of the pope, a deep-laid plot “drawn at long sight,” to regain the supremacy of the world. SSHL June 1895, page 14.5

And it is only a false charity that would silence the cry of warning because the plottings of the pope for the world’ supremacy are carried on with “delicate tact” instead of defiant temerity; with the “flattering tone,” instead of the “Invincible Armada.” SSHL June 1895, page 14.6

May God save the Protestants of England and the world from being deceived by this siren song and flattering tone of the pope into compromising with Rome. And may the same God save Roman Catholics themselves from the tyranny which will follow the triumph of their own system. To this end we labor and pray.—American Sentinel. SSHL June 1895, page 14.7