From Here to Forever


The Goddess of Reason

“The installation of the Goddess of Reason was renewed and imitated throughout the nation, in such places where the inhabitants desired to show themselves equal to all the heights of the Revolution.”7 HF 172.2

When the “goddess” was brought into the Convention, the orator took her by the hand, and turning to the assembly said: “‘Mortals, cease to tremble before the powerless thunders of a God whom your fears have created. Henceforth acknowledge no divinity but Reason. I offer you its noblest and purest image; if you must have idols, sacrifice only to such as this... .’” HF 172.3

“The goddess, after being embraced by the president, was mounted on a magnificent car, and conducted to the cathedral of Notre Dame, to take the place of the Deity. There she was elevated on a high altar, and received the adoration of all present.”8 HF 172.4

Popery began the work which atheism was completing, hurrying France on to ruin. Writers in referring to the horrors of the Revolution say that these excesses are to be charged upon the throne and the church. (See Appendix) In strict justice they are to be charged upon the church. Popery had poisoned the minds of kings against the Reformation. The genius of Rome inspired the cruelty and oppression which proceeded from the throne. HF 172.5

Wherever the gospel was received, the minds of the people were awakened. They began to cast off the shackles that had held them bondslaves of ignorance and superstition. Monarchs saw it and trembled for their despotism. HF 173.1

Rome was not slow to inflame their jealous fears. Said the pope to the regent of France in 1525: “This mania [Protestantism] will not only confound and destroy religion, but all principalities, nobility, laws, orders, and ranks besides.” A papal nuncio warned the king: “The Protestants will upset all civil as well as religious order. ... The throne is in as much danger as the altar.”9 Rome succeeded in arraying France against the Reformation. HF 173.2

The teaching of the Bible would have implanted in the hearts of the people principles of justice, temperance, and truth, which are the cornerstone of a nation's prosperity. “Righteousness exalteth a nation.” Thereby “the throne is established.” Proverbs 14:34; 16:12. See Isaiah 32:17. He who obeys the divine law will most truly respect and obey the laws of the country. France prohibited the Bible. Century after century men of integrity, of intellectual and moral strength, who had the faith to suffer for truth, toiled as slaves in the galleys, perished at the stake, or rotted in dungeon cells. Thousands found safety in flight for 250 years after the opening of the Reformation. HF 173.3

“Scarcely was there a generation of Frenchmen during that long period that did not witness the disciples of the gospel fleeing before the insane fury of the persecutor, and carrying with them the intelligence, the arts, the industry, the order, in which, as a rule, they pre-eminently excelled, to enrich the lands in which they found an asylum. ... If all that was now driven away had been retained in France, what a ... great, prosperous, and happy country—a pattern to the nations—would she have been! But a blind and inexorable bigotry chased from her soil every teacher of virtue, every champion of order, every honest defender of the throne. ... At last the ruin of the state was complete.”10 The Revolution with its horrors was the result. HF 173.4