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excepted on her recognized by the right of the
You are to expect some Scripture, in like manner: for: there never has been an error, how monstrous soever, but Scripture was quoted to give it some colour. Arians, Eutychians, Nestorians have wrested the sacred writings to a wrong sense. The advocates for the deposing power have done the same. They quote $t. Paul, who blames the Corinthians for pleading before heathen magistrates. This proyes that you and I could depose a king, because he would advise our neighbour to avoid troublesome and scandalous law-suits, and leave the decision to the arbitration of two honest neighbours. Je • hoiada, the high priest, ordered queen Athalia to be
slain.* Ergo, the Pope has an indirect power over bad kings.
This proves a direct power, not only to depose, but to murder them: a power which neither Bellarmin nor any Catholic divine has ever vouched. Second : Athalia, who had murdered all the princes of the royal house of Judah, except Joash, was no longer queen, when the sentence was executed on her: for the young prince was crowned in the temple, and recognized by his subjects. His minority could not have deprived him of the right of the sword : and Jehoiada acted as minister of state, pot in his pontifical character. This evinces Bellarmin's blunder in confounding together the queen and subject, the pontiff and counsellor. Third : during the six years she swayed the sceptre, none of her subjects revolted against her, much less did the pious pontiff absolve them from their allegiance, though she re-established Baal's worship, and maintained his priests in the temple of the true God. A circumstance which Bellarmin should have attended to, had he a mind to read his condemnation. Solomon deposed Abiathar, the high priest: Will Bellarmin grant ne the liberty to infer from this fact, that kings can depose Popes?
Such are the ridiculous shifts to which the patrons of a bad cause are inevitably reduced! Wild and uunatural similies, or facts that prove too much, and can be justly retorted on themselves. “Am I accountable for their folly? Or must an
are deprivanized by the prince
Irish Catholic starve, because an Italian wrote nonsense in bad Latin, two hundred years ago?
Had he' not slackened the reins of an enthusiastic imagination, and let it loose to its random flights, he could have spared himself the trouble of soaring to heaven, in pursuit of this offspring of human ambition, or the zeal of earthly kings. For that the deposing power originated either in privileges granted by pious zeal, or covenants entered into and sealed by ainbition, history leaves no room to doubt, and religion forbids to believe other wise. Il est . . ;. ;
Let us begin at home. Inas, king of the West Saxons, renders his kingdom tributary to the Holy See. This concession paves the way to future claims. Henry the Second solicits and obtains a bull from Pope Adrian, in order to invade Ireland. The Pope grants it: but, in blessing this new dish that is to be served on the English monareh's table, he carves his own portion. And why not? The one had as good a right to it'as the other... .. . . t. It is inserted in the bull, that the annual pension of one
penny from every house, should be saved to St. Peter.? If the holy father and bis dear and illustrious son, as he styles him, had afterwards quarrelled about the spoils, the rea ligion of the subject should not be concerned in the dispute. King John, in his contestations with Philip Augustus of Frànce, appeals to the Pope, and renders him the arbiter of rights that should be decided by the sword. The French monarch lays in his exceptions to the Pope's tribunal, as incompetent in such a case. The Englishman chooses a master. «Lo, the gradual progression of the Pope's temporal power in Great Britain. It takes its first rise from the piety,--acquires additional degrees of strength by ambition, and is confirmed by the weakness of Eng. lish monarchs. Hence queen Elizabeth's excommunication, and the absolution of her subjects from their alle, giance by Pope Sixtus, were more owing to Peter's pence than to Peter's keys. The noise of the thunder of the Vatican did not reach Sweden or Denmark, because the effluvia of their mines, and the filings of their gold were never carried by royal stipulations into the regions of the Italian atmosphere, to kindle into flames and cause an explo
sion. But queen Elizabeth could not have pleaded a hundred years prescription against the court of Rome. • Popel
Paul IV. was surprised at her boldness, in assuming the • crown, a fief of the Holy See, without his consent.** Re-. mark in the word (fief) a temporal claim, but no. divine title :
If from Great Britain we pass into Germany, we can trace the rise and progress of the deposing power, in the grants of crowned heads, in pacts and stipulations, and in mutual favours and offices of friendship..
In the eighth century, when the citizens of Rome were harassed by the Lombards, and slighted by the Greeks, their lawful masters, Charlemagne marches to their assistance, defeats the Lombards, is crowned by Pope Leo III. and saluted Emperor by the senate and people of Rome. Nicephorus, who afterwards usurped the throne of Constantinople, sends Ambassadors to the new Emperor, and consents to the dismembering of an empire sinking under its own weight, and exposed to the first soldier of fortune who had the address to form a faction, and courage to plunge the dagger into the breast of the tyrant who filled the throne. What Leo III. has done, proves no right (if it proves any) but that of the law of nature, which authorizes a man, beset by his enemies, to call for assistance to the first who is willing to lend it, and in the effusions of gratitude to thank his deliverer. Bellarmin then has lost his labour in in writing a book, to prove that the Pope has transferred the Empire from the Greeks to the Germans, the better to give some colour to the baseless fabric of the deposing power; for Leo III. did not deprive the Eastern princes of a foot of ground.
- The Empress Irene, afterwards dethroned by Nicephorus, retained her dominions after the coronation of Charles, who acquired nothing by the title of Emperor, but a sounding compliment, All subsequent accessions were either by right of conquest, the tacit or express consent of the Greeks, or the choice of the Senate and Roman people, who preferred a powerful and useful stranger, to a weak and useless master. . The compliment, however, laid the foundation of a power strengthened by the Emperor's will, sent to Rome for the Pope's approbation, and raised to the highest altitude, by Charles the Bald's purchasing the Imperial Crown, for a sum of money, from Pope John the VIII. Hence federal transactions, promises confirmed by oath, pacts and stipulations between Popes and Emperors, who used to swear on St. Peter's toms, and subscribe the conditions imposed on them. . In the great struggles between the two powers, the Pops grounded their claims on customs and oaths, as may be seen in several passages of the canon law. Adstringere 6.vinculo juramenti,' says Pope Clement V. prout tam nos
observationis antiquæ temporibus novissimis renovatæ, quam • forma juramenti hujusmodi sacris inserta canonibus mani
festant."* Jus divinum, divine right, or a plenitude of apostolic power, was out of the question.
In effect, Sir, before the tenth century, there have been as bad Kings, and good Popes as ever since. The cause of religion was equally interesting, and religion itself more vio" lently persecuted. The Roman Pontiffs had the same spiritual authority, the promotion of piety and faith equally at heart, and in the great number some were influenced by different passions and views. For in this mortal life, we all retain some impressions of the frailty of our religion.. : Yet neither piety, nor ambition, the propagation of faith, nor the reformation of morals, ever induced them to attempt the deposing of kings, or arrogating to themselves a power disclaimed by the Saviour of the world, convicted of falsehood by his apostles, and unheard of in the church for the space of ten ages. Why have some of the succeeding pontiifs deviated from the primitive path? I say some, because it would be unjust to charge them all alike. They are distinct individuals succeeding one another in the same throne, and one is as much to be blamed for the faults of his predecessor, as George III. is accountable for the licentiousness of Charles II. .. Why have some of them deviated from the primitive path? It is that they had prescription and privilege to plead, oaths and treaties to support their claims. In the conduct of kings, choosing them for arbiters of their quarrels, covers
* Clementin. Roman. Princip. de jurej.
to their usurpations, and liege lords of their territories, they found a specious pretext to punish the infraction of treaties, and the breach of prerogative. A repetition of the same acts introduced custom, custom obtained the power of law, the law bound the parties concerned, and the violation of the law has been attended with penalties. Hence the deposition of an emperor was more owing to the code and pandects of Justinian, than to the Gospel of Christ. The Popes who stretched their prerogative beyond the bounds of moderation, were blamed by the Catholics themselves, whose religion was in no wise concerned in the quarrels of their superiors; and the few enthusiastic flatterers, who have attempted to lodge Paul's sword and Peter's keys in the same hand, and to make an universal monarch of the vicar of a crucified God, who acknowledged the power of a Heathen magistrate, have injured religion, and betrayed either their madness or ignorance. They have confounded fact with right, the unal. terable dogmas of fate with the flux and changeable customs of men, and built a Chalcedon, though they had a Byzantium before their eyes.
They should have considered, that the church pleads an. tiquity, and that her criterion of truth, and test of sound doctrine, is that golden rule of Vincentius Lerinensis : Quod
semper, quod ubique, quod ab omnibus.' What has been held ever, and every where, and by all, ever. The deposing power was never heard of, for the space of one thousand and eighty-seven years, from St. Peter to Gregory VII: a great chasm this! And the chain of tradition must be very short, when you take off a thousand and eightyseven links.
The Apostles and their successors preached the Christian doctrine in all its rigour. They taught kings to cherish the cross in their hearts, before it was displayed in their banners, and to prefer a heavenly before an carthly throne. Had they and op het haveny perors and come thought (and who could know better?) that the power to de.
one., nada pose them, and to absolve their subjects from their allegiance, were conducive to the glory of God and the honour of religion, they never would have concealed it, much less would they have commanded to obey them.
Every where and by all. The deposing power, though