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judgment are most displayed, as Liverpool, Manchester, York, Norwich, &c., your Association has rarely received any assistance. Your Committee, therefore, desire to point out the great importance of those who are earnest in the cause, to come forward and aid, by annual subscriptions or special contributions, at this crisis.
Your Committee feel it to be a gratifying circumstance that the funds of the Association have been thus augmented rather than diminished, notwithstanding the distressing state of Ireland, and find it to be a growing feeling amongst Protestants, that to foster and encourage Popery there is to encourage that which, whether morally, socially, politically, or religiously considered, is the surest bane to the peace, happiness, and prosperity of the country. Hence their desire not to withdraw from, but to support and invigorate, this and similar Institutions.
CONCLUSION. In concluding their Report, the Committee desire to remind their friends of the declaration recently made by the leaders of each party in the House of Commons in favour of the Church of Rome, and to express their hope that the eventful
year upon which they are entering, may be characterized by an increased spirit of prayer, and energy, and love, on the part of all those concerned in the great and holy cause; that Protestants, avoiding divisions amongst themselves may be united in opposing Popery, maintaining the purity of our faith, the union and independence of the empire, and those Protestant principles, under the influence of which the institutions of the country, have so long prospered.
The Rev. EDWARD BICKERSTETH, in rising to move the first Resolution, said:--I rise to move that the Report which has now been read be adopted, printed under the direction of the Committee, and that the following be the Committee for the ensuing year (the Secretary will afterwards read the names). I feel it, Sir, to be a pleasing duty, as a Christian minister of the Church of England, to come forward at this time and to express my cordial approbation of that Society whose interests we are now met to promote. Our Protestant Association has already been a great national blessing, and if it is more largely and effectually supported by the zeal of Protestants it will, I doubt not, be a yet larger blessing to our country. (Hear, hear.) But I think we have now arrived at a new stage of the conflict, and we must take more vigorous measures than we have ever yet taken. (Applause.) The Romanists are now bold, and Protestants must be bolder still. (Continued applause.) Our national support of Popery, and especially the national endowment of the College of Maynooth, and our general sinfulness, have, I hesitate not to say, brought down the Divine judgments upon us. (Hear.) No one can look upon the actual state of our commercial matters, of the money market, and of the general position of the whole country with regard to the supplies of food—of the difficult era in which we are now living with regard to all the great national interests -without seeing a heavy cloud of judgment hanging over us. (Hear, hear.) We said -I anı sure I can speak for myself—we said it eighteen years ago, before the Catholic Emancipation Bill was passed, that that Bill would bring down judgments upon our country; and very soon after, those judgments did descend in the national disturbances, and the cholera. We humbled ourselves before God, and those judgments were suspended. In 1845 again, before the present trials and judgments came upon us, we stated the same thing; and I have no hesita
tion in saying now what we said before, that these judgments. have come upon us for our national conduct in apostatizing from the Protestant faith. (Hear, hear.) This was scotted at by the infidels beforehand, and I have a singular confirmation of it in my hand. I have here a striking proof of how this idea was mocked at two years ago. One of my brethren at Nottinghamn, in the course of his Fast sermon, stated this principle, which much offended one of his liberal. minded hearers, and that hearer complained much and gravely to another member of the congregation. That member said, “I think my wife has a newspaper in her possession which said something very. nearly the same thing at the time of the Maynooth Endowment Grant passing through Parliament.” He asked to see this newspaper; it was given to him. I have it in my hands now. It is the Weekly Dispatch” of May 4, 1845. Let me read you this Balaam's prophecy, and see how strikingly it confirms our statements. “ Nearly 8,000 petitions," it says, “ have been presented to Parliament against the grant to Maynooth, all of them breathing the worst spirit of fanaticism. These petitions are said to have acquired the signatures of one million of people, which must form a large portion of our population who are of an age and sex to form and express an opinion. Fortunately the Government is strong enough to pay no attention to these petitions. All of them exhibit that rabidness and ferocity which is to be found in connexion with religious prejudice. It would, of course, be vain to expect the decencies of civilized life from men in whom this fanaticism exists, and some of these petitions are gross in an extreme degree. We shall support these assertions by referring to the petitions themselves. One of them, which is sent from Liverpool":
I suppose my dear friend MNeile's petition (applause) "says, that for Parliament to pass this grant is calculated to bring down the judgments of God upon this Protestant country." Now, these are the words which follow; I give them exactly as they are here: “ These wise men might just as well have said that the grant to Maynooth would bring down the divine vengeance upon us, which would be exhibited next winter by the prevalence of east and north winds, by a dearth of corn, and by a considerable rise in the price of butcher's meat and Irish potatoes. (Hear, hear,' and cheers.) The one assertion would not be one iota more contemptible than the other." That is from the • Weekly Dispatch"-a Balaam compelled beforehand to prophecy the truth. (Loud applause). Men exhibit before the world the present difficulties of the country as that which the scoffer thought to be contemptible and impossible. Oh, let him learn--inay God teach him that there is some truth, some wisdom, some reality in believing the Word of God, and in confessing his truth before his fellow-men. (Loud applause.) We live, Sir, in a remarkable time. We have many enemies on every side. I was struck when at Nottingham with the different enemies which are there brought together against us. There we see on one side of the street a Roman Catholic cathedral used by its regular worshippers; we see on the opposite side of the street a godless college for the people, which has excluded the Bible from its system of instruction; and then we see Protestant almshousės i in a third part of the street; and these seemed to me to be a picture
of the three great classes of men who are now more and more manifesting themselves as the three grand divisions of Christendom. We have the men of God-men of faith and love, men who love the truth; and then we have more and more the manifestations of infidelity. We have not, therefore, one class of enemies, we have different classes of enemies. What things are needful for us as faithful ministers and servants of our Lord Jesus Christ, I shall endeavour to suggest in a few practical hints, which I think may be useful. I think that we want, first, a deeper sense of the power of the enemy. We have always been accustomed to think of truth that it is strong and mighty, and that it must prevail ; and no doubt it is so; but, then, we are hardly enough alive to the great and mighty power of the enemy against whom we have to contend. So the Duke of Wellington found it with the British army in Spain. The soldiers and officers had got such an idea that one Englishman was able to beat three Frenchmen, that it was long before the Duke could get it drilled into their minds that there were courage, conduct, and zeal on the part of our enemies as well as on our own part. Then I think what we want is, that we should not have mere desultory attacks. I think the movements of the Protestant Association and of the British Reformation Societies have been much of this kind, and perhaps necessarily so, hitherto. I do not see that it would have been well avoided, as the fault, if there is one, lies more with the country Associations. We invade a town with a powerful deputation-an impression is made for the moment, and then it passes away, and nothing is done till another anniversary -nothing but to stir up the fears and forces of the enemy, because the impression is pot followed up by continued exertions on the spot. This reminds me of cabinets and administrations in the early years of the French Revolution. We had invasions here and invasions there, but no good result seemed to follow. The Duke of York was sent to one place with an army, and then his army was withdrawn. Then again another army was sent forth on another occasion, till at last it was felt to be impossible to accomplish the deliverance of Europe by these fitful and desultory efforts. The Duke of Wellington was not sent forth to Portugal and Spain till the moment when the whole strength of the British nation was roused ; and then he pressed steadily forward till he gained the victory. In the same way let the Protestant Association seek to raise the standard of British feeling ; let them bring all their forces to bear upon this point, and then, I doubt not, they shall gain the victory. (Applause.) We may have to take our stand like the Duke of Wellington on the Torres Vedras of the Bible,-on those grand doctrines which we are met to uphold, salvation by grace through faith and unto holiness. These are the especial doctrines of the Reformation; they were mighty at the time of the Reformation ; and, by the blessing of God, the Cross will again be mighty to the overthrow of Popery. (Applause.) Then another thing which occurs to me is, that we should avail ourselves of present circumstances to open the eyes of Protestants to our real danger. I do in that respect truly thank God for the declaration of Lord Arundel in his late speech. I like his honesty-I believe he is thoroughly honest in it. I wish that all the Jesuits in the kingdom were half as honest,
and then we should understand plainly what it is they desire. (Hear.) Lord Arundel speaks like a inan who believes Popery to be from God. I fully believe it to be from Satan, and there can be no communion between light and darkness; we must go on confessing our faith till the Lord shall give the victory to truth. But, then, a liberal Pope has been sent among us. I fully agree with my dear friend, Sir Culling Eardley Smith, that this is the greatest practical humbug which Europe has ever experienced. It seems like nothing more than this, that the Pope is patting the great beast of the Revelation on the neck until he gets upon his back, and then he will ride him to some purpose. But we are not to be so tricked ; we are not to allow ourselves to be so bamboozled by this pretension of a liberal Pope. Let us never forget our great Saviour's admonition, “ Beware of false prophets which come unto you in sheep's clothing.” (Hear, hear.) Nothing can look more gentle, more winning, more mild, more attractive, more delightful than the present aspect of Popery. I was in the cathedral of Nottingham on Monday morning, where I saw the people at mass ; and I was grieved to find, I am justified in saying, there were at least 250 worshippers there. About the altar, gorgeously dressed, was a priest. I stayed there about ten minutes, and I am sure that in that period he bowed at least twenty-five times towards the altar. There were all sorts of show, pictures, very few words, now and then a little note of music, and the people were worshipping in the aisles at a distance, all of them kneeling with a great deal of apparent devotion ; and when the crucifix was brought out, with lights burning before it as well as upon the altar, the people were all kneeling as it passed in procession through them. Such delightful and touching forms, such various fascinations of the Romish charmer, are calculated to strike an imaginative mind, and to make them think that there is something excellent, something sublime in such a religion. We need to be guarded against those fascinations of Popery on every side, and I pray God that it may be so. Popery is enthusiastic-we see that in all its present proceedings. Infidelity is also enthusiastic-we see that in its movements, more especially upon the Continent. Now, both Popery and Infidelity must be opposed by zealous, earnest, experienced Protestantism; worldly-minded, and covetous, and pleasure-seeking, and nominal Protestants never could overcome the enchantments of Rome. The divisions and strifes of Protestants can never overcome the formal outside unity of Rome. The mere intelligent approbation of Protestantism, and attainments in science, will never overcome the enthusiasm of a false religion. Mahomedanism overcame all that in the East; Popery, Infidelity, and lawlessness, will overcome mere formal Protestantism in the West. We want real men and real Protestants-warm-hearted, intelligent, zealous scriptural men--men who possess the scriptural enthusiasm of the Apostle Paul, which will enable them to meet all our mighty enemies, and overcome them. (Loud applause.) Then it is needful that we should have more vigorous practical measures. The darkness of our own country on the subject of religion is truly painful. What can be a greater proof of this than that the Government of the country should proclaim in the face of all Europem by their openly supporting the Maynooth College, which is instituted for the purpose of teaching the apostasy of Rome that Popery is in their view as much religion as Protestantism, or, that else, like Pilate, they do not know what is truth? We need to be deeper and fuller instructed in the Protestant faith. My entire conviction is, that the British Empire can never be really safe, nor soundly prosperous, while the Romish apostasy is nationally favoured by us, and the political strength of the land is given to Rome. (Loud applause.) Nor can we be extricated from those dangers till the children of God are united, and lend their full efforts, in the first instance, to the removal of all Romish and all vital error. In the second place, we must retrace our steps politically, renouncing all the favour which has been shown to a system that God our Saviour condemns in his Word, and as a nation we must openly confess and maintain his truth as far as our dominions extend. (Applause.) These are the duties before us. Now for another suggestion. All the great Protestant defences which are now lying slumbering in our libraries and on our shelves should be republished in a cheap and accessible form. Why should such a book as Gibson's “ Preservatives,” in three folio volumes be so dear and so scarce-a book which is one of the valuable and important defences of our cause? Why should Stillingfleet's great work, so valuable as it is, be allowed to lie slumbering in six folio volumes ? Why should Millett's “Synopsis Papismi,”—why should all these works be laid aside ? Our University of Oxford ought to rise to its true position as a Protestant University in this land, and republish these invaluable defences of our Protestant faith. But, if they should not do so, we ought to have our Societies, like the Parker Society and the excellent Calvin Translation Society, for the republication of these great defences of our Protestant faith. Then the mass of the people need to be instructed yet more and more in these principles. I apprehend that the ministers of all denominations--all who hold Christ as their head---need to instruct their people on those great religious principles on which the Reformation stands. I hope, dear. brethren, that we shall more and more feel it to be our duty to bring Protestantism in its Scripture character, as it is brought, before us in the Word of God, that we shall bring Protestantism in its essential elements before, our congregations. The prophecies regarding Popery are obscure only because they have been left in the dark; they are obscure, not because of the differing opinions of those who have studied them, as because we have laid aside that Divine and Protestant armour which God has provided for us in his word. Till the national mind be enlightened, we can have little hope of full success. But, above all, what I think we' most want is real deep sympathy for: the Papist himself (applause), a glowing, earnest love, to make them feel their peculiar condition. We want, with heart and mind, to sound in their ears the warning voice of the fifteenth chapter of the Revelations, “Come out of her, my people, that ye partake not of her sins and of her plagues.” Blessed be God that there are some of his people even in the midst of Rome! Oh, for a longing desire to deliver them from the judgments which we see impending over, them,roh, for a longing desire to save them from the perils in which