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explains the traditions prevalent in the world. It throws light upon them; and all the other doctrines of Christianity are strictly connected with it, as links of the same chain. The nature of Christ's existence is mysterious, I admit; but this mystery meets the wants of man: reject it, and the world is an inexplicable riddle,-believe it, and the history of our race is satisfactorily explained.
Christianity has one advantage over all systems of philosophy and all religions: Christians do not delude themselves in regard to the nature of things. You cannot reproach them with the subtleties and artifices of those idealists who think to solve profound theological problems by their empty dissertations. Fools! their efforts are those of the infant who tries to touch the sky with his hand, or cries to have the moon for his plaything. Christianity says simply, "No man hath seen God but God. God reveals what he is: his revelation is a mystery which neither imagination nor reason can conceive. But when God speaks, man must believe." This is sound common sense. The Gospel possesses a secret virtue of indescribable efficacy, a warmth which influences the understanding and softens the heart; in meditating upon it, you feel as you do in contemplating the heavens. The Gospel is more than a book; it is a living thing, active, powerful, overcoming every obstacle in its way. See upon this table this book of books,—and here the emperor touched it reverently, I never cease reading it, and always with new delight.
Christ never hesitates, never varies in his instructions, and the least of his assertions is stamped with a simplicity and a depth which captivate the ignorant and the learned, if they give it their attention.
Nowhere is to be found such a series of beautiful thoughts, fine moral maxims, following one another like ranks of a celestial army, and producing in the soul the same emotion as is felt in contemplating the infinite extent of the resplendent heavens on a fine summer night.
Not only is our mind absorbed; it is controlled, and the soul can never go astray with this book for its guide. Once master of our mind, the Gospel is a faithful friend. God himself is our Friend, our Father, and truly our God. A mother has not greater care for the infant on her breast. The soul, captivated by the beauty of the Gospel, is no longer its own. God occupies it altogether; he directs its thoughts and all its faculties: it is his.
What a proof it is of the divinity of Christ, that with so absolute an empire, his single aim is the spiritual melioration of individ
uals, their purity of conscience, their union to the truth, their holiness of soul.
My last argument is, There is not a God in heaven, if a mere man was able to conceive and execute successfully the gigantic design of making himself the object of supreme worship, by usurping the name of God. Jesus alone dared to do this: he alone said clearly and unfalteringly of himself, I am God; which is quite different from saying, I am a god, or there are gods. History mentions no other individual who has appropriated to himself the title of God in the absolute sense. Heathen mythology nowhere pretends that Jupiter and the other gods themselves assumed divinity. It would have been on their part the height of pride and absurdity. They were deified by their posterity, the heirs of the first despots. As all men are of one race, Alexander could call himself the son of Jupiter; but Greece laughed at the silly assumption; and in making gods of their emperors, the Romans were not serious. Mahomet and Confucius merely gave out that they were agents of the Deity. Numa's goddess Egeria was only the personification of his reflections in the solitude of the woods. The Brahmas of India are only deifications of mental attributes.
How then should a Jew, the particulars of whose history are better attested than that of any of his contemporaries,-how should he alone, the son of a carpenter, give out all at once that he was God, the Creator of all things? He arrogates to himself the highest adoration. He constructs his worship with his own hands, not with stones but with men. You are amazed at the conquests of Alexander. But here is a conqueror who appropriates to his own advantage, who incorporates with himself, not a nation, but the human race. Wonderful! the human soul with all its faculties becomes blended with the existence of Christ. And how? by a prodigy surpassing all other prodigies he seeks the love of men, the most difficult thing in the world to obtain: he seeks what a wise man would fain have from a few friends, a father from his children, a wife from her husband, a brother from a brother,-in a word, the heart: this he seeks, this he absolutely requires, and he gains his object. Hence I infer his divinity. Alexander, Cæsar, Hannibal, Louis XIV., with all their genius, failed here. They conquered the world and had not a friend. I am perhaps the only person of my day who loves Hannibal, Cæsar, Alexander. Louis XIV., who shed so much lustre upon France and the world, had not a friend in all his kingdom, not even in his own family. True, we love our children, but it is from instinct,
from a necessity which the beasts themselves obey and how many children manifest no proper sense of our kindness and the cares we bestow on them,-how many ungrateful children! Do your children, General Bertrand, love you? You love them, but you are not sure of being requited. Neither natural affection nor your kindness will ever inspire in them such love as Christians have for God. When you die your children will remember you, doubtless while spending your money; but your grandchildren will hardly know that you ever existed. And yet you are General Bertrand! And we are here upon an island, where all your cares and all your enjoyments are centred in your family.
Christ speaks, and at once generations become his by stricter, closer ties than those of blood; by the most sacred, most indissoluble of all unions. He lights up the flame of a love which consumes self-love, which prevails over every other love.
In this wonderful power of his will we recognize the Word that created the world.
The founders of other religions never conceived of this mystical love, which is the essence of Christianity, and is beautifully called charity.
Hence it is that they have struck upon a rock. In every attempt to effect this thing, namely, to make himself beloved, man deeply feels his own impotence.
So that Christ's greatest miracle undoubtedly is the reign of charity.
He alone succeeded in lifting the heart of man to things invisible, and in inducing him to sacrifice temporal things: he alone, by influencing him to this sacrifice, has formed a bond of union between heaven and earth. All who sincerely believe in him taste this wonderful, supernatural exalted love, which is beyond the power of reason, above the ability of man; a sacred fire brought down to earth by this new Prometheus, and of which Time, the great destroyer, can neither exhaust the force nor limit the duration. The more I, Napoleon, think of this, I admire it the more. And it convinces me absolutely of the divinity of Christ.
I have inspired multitudes with such affection for me that they would die for me. God forbid that I should compare the soldier's enthusiasm with Christian charity, which are as unlike as their cause.
But after all, my presence was necessary, the lightning of my eye, my voice, a word from me: then the sacred fire was kindled in their hearts. I do indeed possess the secret of this magical power which lifts the soul, but I could never impart it to any one: none of my generals ever learnt it from me;
nor have I the secret of perpetuating my name and love for me in the hearts of men, and to effect these things without physical
Now that I am at St. Helena,-now that I am alone chained to this rock,-who fights and wins empires for me? Where are any to share my misfortunes,-any to think of me? Who bestirs himself for me in Europe? Who remains faithful to me: where are my friends? Yes, two or three of you, who are immortalized by this fidelity, ye share, ye alleviate my exile.
Here the emperor's voice choked with grief. Yes, my life once shone with all the brilliance of the diadem and the throne, and yours, Bertrand, reflected that brilliance, as the dome of the "Invalides," gilt by me, reflects the rays of the sun. But disasters came, the gold gradually became dim, and now all the brightness is effaced by the rain of misfortune and outrage with which I am continually pelted. We are mere lead now, General Bertrand, and soon I shall be in my grave.
Such is the fate of great men. So it was with Cæsar, and Alexander, and I too am forgotten; and the name of a conqueror and an emperor is a college theme! our exploits are tasks given to pupils by their tutor, who sits in judgment upon us, awarding us censure or praise.
How different the opinions formed of the great Louis XIV.! Scarcely dead, the great king was left alone in his solitary chamber at Versailles, neglected by his courtiers, and perhaps the object of their ridicule. He was no more their master. He was a dead body, in his coffin, the prey of a loathsome putrefaction.
And mark what is soon to become of me,— assassinated by the English oligarchy, I die before my time, and my dead body too must return to the earth to become food for worms.
Such is soon to be the fate of the Great Napoleon! What a wide abyss between my deep misery and the eternal kingdom of Christ, which is proclaimed, loved, adored, and which is extending over all the earth! Is this death? Is it not life rather? The death of Christ is the death of a God.
The emperor paused, and as General Bertrand did not answer, the emperor resumed: You do not perceive that Jesus Christ is God? then I did wrong to appoint you general!
The above is translated from a French tract, printed in Paris, with the title "Napoleon." The narrative is confirmed by a letter from the Rev. Dr. G. De Felice, Professor in the Theological Seminary at Montauban, France, in a communication inserted in the New York Observer of April 16, 1842.
Professor De Felice states that the Rev. Dr. Bogue sent Napoleon at St. Helena a copy of his "Essay on the Divine Authority of the New Testament," which eye-witnesses attest that he read with interest and satisfaction. He also states that similar witnesses attest that he read much in the Bible, and spoke of it with profound respect; and further, that there was a religious revival among the inhabitants of St. Helena, which extended to the soldiers, who prayed much for the conversion and salvation of the noble prisoner. Professor De Felice closes his communication by translating from a recent French journal the following conversation related by Count de Montholon, the faithful friend of the emperor:
I know men, said Napoleon, and I tell you that Jesus is not a man:
The religion of Christ is a mystery which subsists by its own force, and proceeds from a mind which is not a human mind. We find in it a marked individuality, which originated a train of words and maxims unknown before. Jesus borrowed nothing from our knowledge. He exhibited in himself the perfect example of his precepts. Jesus is not a philosopher; for his proofs are miracles, and from the first his disciples adored him. In fact, learning and philosophy are of no use in salvation; and Jesus came into the world to reveal the mysteries of heaven and the laws of the Spirit.
Alexander, Cæsar, Charlemagne, and myself founded empires: but upon what did we rest the creations of our genius? Upon force. Jesus Christ alone founded his empire upon love; and at this hour millions of men would
die for him.
It was not a day or a battle which achieved the triumph of the Christian religion in the world. No: it was a long war, a contest for three centuries, begun by the apostles, then continued by the flood of Christian generations. In this war all the kings and potentates of earth were on one side: on the other I see no army, but a mysterious force, some men scattered here and there in all parts of the world, and who have no other rallying point than a common faith in the mysteries of the cross.
I die before my time, and my body will be given back to the earth to become food for worms. Such is the fate which so soon awaits him who has been called The Great Napoleon. What an abyss between my deep misery and the eternal kingdom of Christ, which is proclaimed, loved, and adored, and which is extending over the whole earth!
Call you this dying? Is it not living rather? The death of Christ is the death of a God!
The Letters of Junius were originally published in The Public Advertiser of London, by Henry Sampson Woodfall, the first letter bearing date January 21, 1769, and the last January 21, 1772. They are addressed to the Printer of The Public Advertiser, Sir William Draper, the Duke of Grafton, the Duke of Bedford, Lord North, Lord Mansfield, the King of England, Rev. Mr. Horne, and others. Who Junius was is as yet (July 8, 1878) unknown: we have reviewed the controversy at length in another place (Allibone's Critical Dictionary, vol. i. pp. 1001-1005), to which we refer the inquirer, adding to our authorities Notes and Queries and (London) Athenæum, 1849, et seq., Indexes. Is it not possible that Sir Philip Francis was the amanuensis, or one of the amanuenses, of Junius,-probably in ignorance himself of the author?
"The classic purity of their language, the exquisite force and perspicuity of their argument, the keen severity of their reproach, the extensive information they evince, their fearless and decisive tone, and, above all, their stern and steady attachment to the purest principles of the Constitution,
acquired for them, with an almost electric speed, possessed, nor, perhaps, ever will; and, what is a popularity which no series of letters have since of far greater consequence, diffused among the body a clearer knowledge of their constitutional rights than they had ever before attained, and animated them with a more determined spirit to M.D.: Essay on Junius and his Writings. maintain them inviolate."-JOHN MASON GOOD,
John Wade, Lond., 1850, 2 vols. post 8vo See the Letters of Junius, third edition, by (Bohn's Stand. Lib.). In his Supplementary Essay Mr. Wade espouses the claims of Sir Philip Francis; Lords Macaulay, Brougham, and Campbell, Sir James Mackintosh, and many others were of the same opinion.
FROM JUNIUS'S LETTER TO THE KING. When the complaints of a brave and powerful people are observed to increase in proportion to the wrongs they have suffered; when. instead of sinking into submission, they are roused to resistance, the time will soon arrive at which every inferior consideration must yield to the security of the sovereign, and to the general safety of the state. There is a moment of difficulty and danger at which flattery can no longer deceive, and simplicity itself can no longer be misled. Let us suppose it arrived. Let us suppose a gracious, well-intentioned prince made sensible at last of the great duty he owes to his people and of his own disgraceful situation; that he looks round him for assistance, and asks for no advice, but how to gratify the wishes, and secure the happiness of his subjects. In these circumstances, it may be matter of
curious speculation to consider, if an honest man were permitted to approach a king, in what terms he would address himself to his sovereign. Let it be imagined, no matter how improbable, that the first prejudice against his character is removed; that the ceremonious difficulties of an audience are surmounted; that he feels himself animated by the purest and most honourable affections to his king and country; and that the great person whom he addresses has spirit enough to bid him speak freely and understanding enough to listen to him with attention. Unacquainted with the vain impertinence of forms, he would deliver his sentiments with dignity and firmness, but not without respect: SIR-It is the misfortune of your life, and originally the cause of every reproach and distress which has attended your government, that you should never have been acquainted with the language of truth until you heard it in the complaints of your people. It is not, however, too late to correct the error of your education. We are still inclined to make an indulgent allowance for the pernicious lessons you received in your youth, and to form the most sanguine hopes from the natural benevolence of your disposition. We are far from thinking you capable of a direct, deliberate purpose to invade those original rights of your subjects on which all their civil and political liberties depend. to entertain a suspicion so dishonourable to Had it been possible for us your character, we should long since have adopted a style of remonstrance very distant from the humility of complaint. trine inculcated by our laws, "that the king The doccan do no wrong," is admitted without reluctance. We separate the amiable, goodnatured prince from the folly and treachery of his servants, and the private virtues of the man from the vices of the government. Were it not for this just distinction, I know not whether your majesty's condition, or that of the English nation, would deserve most to be lamented. I would prepare your mind for a favourable reception of a truth, by removing every painful offensive idea of personal reproach. Your subjects, sir, wish for nothing, but that, as they are reasonable and affectionate enough to separate your person from your government, so you, in your turn, should distinguish between the conduct which becomes the permanent dignity of a king and that which serves only to promote the temporary interest and miserable ambition of a minister.
You ascended the throne with a declared (and, I doubt not, a sincere) resolution of giving universal satisfaction to your subjects. You found them pleased with the novelty of a young prince, whose counte
nance promised even more than his words, and loyal to you, not only from principle, but passion. It was not a cold profession of allegiance to the first magistrate, but a partial, animated attachment to a favourite prince, the native of their country. They to be determined by experience, but gave you did not wait to examine your conduct, nor of your reign, and paid you in advance the dearest tribute of their affections. Such, a generous credit for the future blessings sir, was once the disposition of a people who now surround your throne with reproaches and complaints.
Banish from your mind those unworthy opinions with which some interested persons Do justice to yourself. have laboured to possess you. Distrust the men who tell you that the English are naturally light and inconstant; that they complain without a cause. confidence equally from all parties; from ministers, favourites, and relations; and let Withdraw your there be one moment in your life when you have consulted your own understanding..
because they are new to you. Accustomed
house of Hanover, not from a vain prefer-
which it animates s many new bodies of doctrines in their turn. And as none of
those dying pangs which hurt you in a tale of India attend the desertion of each of these speculative forms which the soul has a while inhabited, you are extremely amused by the number of transitions, and eagerly ask what is to be the next, for you never deem the present state of such a man's views to be for permanence, unless perhaps when he has terminated his course of believing everything
born 1770, in 1792 commenced preaching,
duced."-SIR J. MACKINTOSH.
ON A MAN'S WRITING A MEMOIR OF
ultimately believing nothing. Even then, unless he is very old, or feels more pride in being a sceptic, the conqueror of all systems, than he ever felt in being the champion of one, even then it is very possible he may spring up again, like a vapour of fire from a bog, and glimmer through new mazes, or retrace his course through half of those that no respect attaches to this Proteus of which he trod before. You will observe opinions after his changes have been multiplied, as no party expect him to remain with them, nor deem him much of an acquisition if he should. One, or perhaps two, considerable changes will be regarded as signs of which his first or his second intellectual cona liberal inquirer, and therefore the party to version may assign him will receive him gladly, But he will be deemed to have abfound that he can adopt no principles but dicated the dignity of reason when it is to betray them; and it will be perhaps justly suspected that there is something extremely infirm in the structure of that mind, whatever vigour may mark some of its operations, to which a series of very different, and sometimes contrasted, theoHIM-ries can appear in succession demonstra tively true, and which imitates sincerely the perverseness which Petruchio only af fected, declaring that which was yesterday to a certainty the sun, to be to-day as cer tainly the moon.
Though in memoirs intended for publication a large share of incident and action would generally be necessary, yet there are some whose mental history alone might be very interesting to reflective readers; as, for instance, that of a thinking man remarkable for a number of complete changes of his speculative system. From observing the usual tenacity of views once deliberately adopted in mature life, we regard as a curious phenomenon the man whose mind has been a kind of caravansera of opinions, enter tained a while, and then sent on pilgrimage; a man who has admired and dismissed systems with the same facility with which John Buncle found, adored, married, and interred his succession of wives, each one being, for the time, not only better than all that went before, but the best in the creation. You admire the versatile aptitude of a mind sliding into successive forms of belief in this intellectual metempsychosis, by
It would be curious to observe in a man, who should make such an exhibition of the course of his mind, the sly-deceit of selflove. While he despises the system which he has rejected, he does not deem it to imply so great a want of sense in him once to have embraced it, as in the rest who were then or are now its disciples and advocates. No: in him it was no debility of reason; it was at the utmost but a merge of it; and probably he is prepared to explain to you that such peculiar circumstances as might warp even a very strong and liberal mind attended his consideration of the subject, and misled him to admit the belief of what others prove themselves fools by believing.
Another thing apparent in a record of changed opinions would be, what I have noticed before, that there is scarcely any