Page images

We may, however, discern a pleasing counterpart to this pertinacious spirit of scepticism, in the assured hold with which the humble and teachable mind is enabled to grasp truths, which are the furthest removed from the experience of common life. Thus, to the Protestant who has made himself acquainted with the evidence upon which we ground our certain persuasion, that the Papacy is the Man of Sin and Son of Perdition, the attempt of Mr. Burgh to shake this great truth, and overthrow his faith, will appear to rest upon no firmer ground, than if the learned Lecturer had endeavoured to prove that no such empires as those of Babylon and Persia, of Greece and Rome, have ever existed, or that no such persons have ever lived as Luther or Melancthon, or any other well known characters of history.

[ocr errors]


[ocr errors]

THE evidence of truth is of a continually growing nature; and since these sheets were sent to the press, I have met with new evidence in support of the Protestant principles of interpretation, and in refutation of those adopted by Mr. Burgh, in a quarter that I least expected it. In these pages, I have brought against the Reverend Lecturer the very grave and serious charge of his having given the right hand of fellowship to the Romish Doctors, in the interpretation of the Prophecies applied to Papal Rome by the Protestant Churches. But in looking through the testimonies produced from the more enlightened and spiritual' members of the Romish Church, by Dr. Drue Cressener, in his able and unanswerable work, A DEMONSTRATION OF THE FIRST PRINCIPLES OF THE PROTESTANT INTERPRETATIONS OF THE APOCALYPSE, I find that, on very important points, they approximate much nearer to the true principles of interpretation," and are much

* I do not say they at all approximate to the truth in applying these principles.

further advanced in the knowledge of these principles than Mr. Burgh, who is involved in far deeper shades of darkness than such men as the Jesuit Alcasar,* and Malvenda, and Ribera,Ị and Cornelius a Lapide,|| having in fact identified himself in his principles of interpretation with the very dregs of that Church, namely, Bellarmine, and the ultramontane or Italian Doctors. How are we to account for this, but upon the principle that no darkness is so great as that of those who willingly put out the light, or turn away from it? The above mentioned Spanish Divines of the Romish Church, never had the light of the Reformation; since, before it had time to spread in that kingdom, it was extinguished by the fires of the Inquisition.ß

* Alcasar was a Spanish Jesuit of Seville, where he died in 1613.

† Malvenda was a Spanish Dominican, who died in 1628.

# Ribera was a Spanish Jesuit, who died at Salamanca in 1591.

Il Cornelius a Lapide, was a Jesuit, who died in 1632.Du Pin does not say of what country he was.

§ “The zeal of the Inquisition against the Jews, was inflamed by avarice; against the Reformers, by hatred and fear. The doctrines of the Reformation were spreading as rapidly in Spain, as in France and Germany, Charles V. had sent men chosen for their learning and eloquence, into the Empire and Low Countries, that by their preaching they might check the progress of heresy. Many of these men became themselves convinced of the

They therefore have a sounder knowledge of some of the true principles of interpretation

errors and impostures of the Church which they were sent to defend, and returned to Spain to become the Apostles of the Reformation among their own countrymen. Among The converts were men of high rank, and many whose situation rendered them peculiarly exposed to observation and danger. Had not the Inquisition interfered when it did, said Paramo, heresy would have run like wildfire through Spain, so disposed were persons of all degrees, and both sexes, to embrace it. And another writer

says, that had the remedy been delayed only a few months, all Spain would have been in a flame."

“In this great and effectual persecution, eight hundred persons were at the same time apprehended at Seville. The prisons were not large enough to contain them, and private houses were converted into prisons for the occasion. The most exquisite tortures were used to force from them the names of their associates in the faith, and these tortures were endured with such constancy, that one of the Inquisitors said these heretics had it written in their inmost hearts, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself;' for till they were almost torn and cut to pieces, not an information could be extorted from them; and many resisted the utmost torment that could be applied. The victims were burnt by scores at successive (autos-da-fe) acts of faith.

The Romanists, proceeding upon the principle of exterminating heresy, did their work effectually in Spain: if our bloody Mary, instead of dying providentially as she did, had lived to the age of Elizabetli

, the same work would have been done as effectually in England. Every person whom they suspected of favouring the doctrines of the Re. formation was seized without respect to sex or rank, and all whom they failed to terrify into a recantation were burnt.” Quarterly Review (Tracts on Spanish and Por. tuguese Inquisition) for. Dec. 1811, pp. 332--335.

These are among the Records of History which the Rev. W. Burgh, a minister of one of the Reformed Churches, forbids our referring to in the interpretation of prophecy!!! The above persecution was about the years 1559 and 1560.


than the Pseudo-Protestants who have extinguished the light.

I proceed now very briefly to show that this is the case, by producing certain testimonies of these writers as quoted by Dr. Cressener.

According to Mr. Burgh, the Beast from the Sea, of Rev. xiii. is identical with the Man of Sin, (Lect. p. 119,) and therefore he is an Individual Man. On the other hand, the Jesuit Ribera affirms, that all Expositors have understood, that in every one of the seven kings in Rev. xvii. 10, are comprehended a great manyand “that it is not unusual in Scripture by one King to signify many of the like sort." (Dr. Cressener Demonst. p. 146.)

Alcasar in C. xiii. A poc. Sect. 6. “By the Beast of the Earth (or second Beast) is signified a multitude of persons, as well as by the Beast of the Sea; as well the one as the other is the scheme of a numerous multitude, and not of a single person, as in the seventh of Daniel.” (Dr. Cressener Demonst. p. 185.)

Cornelius a Lapide, in cap. 13. Apoc. 66 The two Horns (of the second Beast) as

« EelmineJätka »