Neal - Houston-Packer Collection BX9333 .N4 1754 v1

xii P R E F AC E. " ment require the eflablifhmentoffome religion." By which, if no more be meant, than that civil government cannot fubf/t without religion, no reasonable man will dispute it. " z. That open impiety, or a public oppo- "Pion made to, and an avowed contempt of the eflablfed religion, which " ! is a considerable part of the conflitution, do greatly promote the d f ur- " bane of the public peace, and naturally tend to the fubverfion of the " whole conflitution." 'Tis here fuppofèd that one particular religion mull be incoporated into the conflitution, which is not necefjary to the ends of government ; for religion and civil government are diflinEI things, and And upon a feparate basis. Religion in general is the fupport of civil go- vernment, and 'tis the office of the civil magJrate to proteil all his dutiful and loyal fubjetls in the free exercise of their religion ; but to incorporate one particular religion into the conflitution, fo as to make it part of the Ibid. p. io. common law, and to conclude from thence, that the conflitution having a right topreserve itself, may make lawsfor the punishment of thole that publicly oppofe any one branch of it, is to put an efeölual flop to the pro= grefs of the reformation throughout the whole chriflian world ; for by this reafoning, our firfl reformers mull- be condemned; and if a fiibject of France, or the ecciefiaftical ftate, should at this time write againfi the ufurped power of the pope; or expofè the abfurclities of tranfubflantiation, adoration of the boll, worshipping of images, &c it would be laudablefor the legislative powers of thofe countries, to fend the wie I TER to the gallies, or Phut him up in a dungeon, as a d/urber of the public peace, becaufe popery is fupported by law, and is a very considerable part of their confli- tution. But to fupport the government's right to enaht penal laws againfl thof who oppose the eflablshed religion, his lordship is pleated to refer us to the ediëls of the first chrf1ian emperors, out of the codex Theodofianus, com- pofed in the 5th century, which acquaints us with the fentiments of that and the preceding age; but fays nothing of the dotirine of f fcripture, or of the prahtice of the church fir 30o years, before the empire became chrif- tian. His lord/hip then fubjoins fundry paffages out of a fermon of arch- hifhop Tillotfon, whom he jufly ranks among the greateft of the moderns. But it ought to be remembered, that this fermon was preached at court in the year 168o, when the nation was in imminent danger from the popish plot. His lordship fhould adfo have acquainted his readers with the arch- dip. Tillot. be/hop's cautious introdullion, which is this ; " .I cannot think (till 1 be works, " better informed, which I am always ready to be) that any pretence of Vol. 1. fol. as confcience warrants any man that cannot work miracles, to drawmen- p. 320, 3,20. is f from the eftablUbed religion of a nation, nor openly to make prole- " lytes to his own religion, in contempt ofthe,magiftrate and the law, ". though he is never fo fure be is in the right." This propftion, though pointed