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XXVI

INTRODUCTORY ESSAY.

will

be with

the

spiritual

powers lodged

in the

successor of

"the

prince of

the

apostles."

The mundane honours

of

the

pope will

be

eclipsed

in

the

spiritual

glories of

the

personator of

the

Saviour.

But just

in proportion

as

these spiritual

claims

are advanced

will

his

civil

and political

power

be promoted; for

we

repeat

it,

and trust

we

have made

it

plain,

it

is

in virtue

of

that

same

spiritual

charac-

ter that

he challenges

"all

power

in heaven and

in earth." Let the

pope be divested of

all

worldly dominion,

let

him be literally

re-

duced

to

the state

of

the

apostle whom

he

affects

to represent, when

he

said,

"Silver and

gold have

I

none,

"

let

him

become a person-

age

as obscure

and unpretending

as

M.

Roothan,

the

General of the

Society

of

Jesus,

still

he

will be,

like

that

official,

the

symbol of a

sovereignty,

all the

more devotedly worshipped by its

true

devotees

that it

no longer boasts

of

earthly grandeur

;

a

sovereignty

at

eternal

variance with

every

other

form of

human

power

that

will

not

bend

to its

will,

-

-a

sovereignty essentially hostile

to

the

British

crown,

and

incompatible with

the

liberties of mankind.

Popery, in

fact,

so

far from being unchangeable,

has not

only

often

varied from itself,

but

has been undergoing

a gradual

process of in-

ternal

development, which

seems only now

approaching its

comple-

tion. This

transmutation

is

indicated by

the

various stages

through

which

the

Papacy has

passed.

It

has gone

through its

period

of

infancy,

of

childhood,

and

of

maturity;

and now

it

seems

about

to

reach its grand

climacteric.

The

pope

began to

rise

by

assuming

superiority

over his

brother

bishops.

His next

step

was to usurp,

as

the

vicar of Christ,

the

powers

and prerogatives

of

the Head

of

the

church.

His next

was

to

claim,

in

virtue

of

this

vicariate, the

mediatorial

"power in

heaven

and in earth,"

or

a right

to

interfere

with every

thing

that

might,

in

his

judgment,

conduce to

the

good

of

the

church.

There remained

only one

step

more,

that,

namely,

of challenging,

as

God,

the

supreme homage

of

mankind. And this

stage has been

now

attained. Mediatorial honours

will no longer

suit

the

insatiable ambition of

the

Roman pontiff: he must,

"AS

GOD,

sit in

the

temple of

God,

showing

himself

that

HE IS

GOD

I"

This heaven

-

daring

pretence, by which Rome

has all along

identified

itself with "

that

Wicked

" spoken of

in

holy

Scripture

(2 Thess.

ii 3

-8),

a

pretence

always involved

in the theory

of

the

Papacy,

often

propounded in its

schools,

debated among its

divines,

and

avowed more or

less

boldly

by

successive pontiffs,

this

truly

blas-

phemous

claim, seems

destined to be

"

revealed"

more clearly and

convincingly

than

ever,

by

being

put

forth

in all

its

naked

arrogance,

and

acknowledged in all its

portentous magnitude.