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of the neighbourhood have been often hours of the showery season, of spring heard to remark, that any menaces from or autumn, if any spot around would the object of their study, are still earliest seem to indicate a brighter prospect, it iudicated by the gloom that gathers is ever the green and sunny summit of around Mary Gray; while in the darkest Bessy Bell.
This being a day of which our poor nor agitate, nor crouch submissively stupid forefathers never dreamed, a day like sycophants, to the will of every in which the world teems with mira- variable and varying administration ! culous improvements, projected for The nation could never have done this! church and state, let us draw out of the They say it has done so, and appeal to bustle for a moment and ponder upon the testimony of centuries which have one of the excellent changes in agita- elapsed since the first deed of gift contion. Which shall we select? Corn firmatory of the same. To speak in laws-repeal of the union-abolition of sober earnest, this is the fact. No slavery-abolition of tithes ? Let it be friend of tithes, conversant with the the last ; for the individuals primarily truth of Christianity in all its bearings, concerned are not a class likely to turn could for an instant be cheated into the on us if we wrong them. And the belief of such double-refined nonsense, practice of the age being to attack the as that tithes are held by our clergy weakest, in the name of fashion, have at “ Jure Divino." All that can be said them! Tithes! why the very word from Scripture on the subject is, that should be as abominable to us as pork we have there an example of national to a Jew. The wretched Israelites were support rendered to the ministers of a always odious to honest men; tithes right religion. Our kingdom followed are a bantling of their by-gone policy, that example, and did well, except it be and therefore righteously to be ab- considered stupid policy to imitate horred with the parent. "In this con- what was so sanctioned by a higher clusion we are sure of having with us anthority than that of man. A national every rational dissenter. What shrewd gift conferred tithes on the officers of fellows the dissenters! How clearly our church for their support, and to they detected even the rags of old tithes they have as much right and title mother popery dangling from the skirts as Marlborough had and Wellington of our tithe-owning establishment! has to the estutes confirmed to them How wisely they condemned the doat- and to their heirs for ever. In truth, ing institutions of corrupting the pure it is almost waste of words and time to gospel of Christianity, founding her argue about a right which is more palcontinuance and support on Jewish tax- pable than that by which three fourths ation. Yet these same obstinate, un of the estates in Britain are at present tractable parsons, half-priests, half-Jews held—the question is merely between have the hardihood to deny that they might and right. Has the nation a assert a right to tithes on any appeal to right to abolish tithes and retract the Jewish law! Stupid fools, not to take gift once made to our ecclesiastics ? as their defence the line of reasoning No more than it has to strip the heirs thrust upon them by the wise dis- of Marlborough of Blenheim, or deprive senters, who should of course understand the Duke of Wellington of the Straththeir interests and affairs better than fieldsay estates bestowed on him in tog themselves. No; the Ministers of our ken of his country's gratitude. Has the establishment disclaim all connection nation might to dispossess our clergy of with Judæism, maintain that they con- their incomes ? Yes, might there is, and ceive and believe every Jewish law and whenever exerted, the ministers of ceremony superseded for the present our church, at the public will-worked hy Christianity, and that their right to up into the form of law-may be fiung tithes rest solely on the deed of the out to shift and strugyle for a maintenation at large. What dolts! The nance, with the talents and education nation bestow such an enormous reve at which, thank God, no legalised mob nue on a body that will neither fight can reach. However, as there seems
to be a longing abroad for the exertion both on high among the people. And of this might, and abolition of tithes, there came in two men, children of but some little doubt and hesitation as Belial, and sat before him ; and the to the easiest and surest method of men of Belial witnessed against him, proceeding, we will quote a case in even against Naboth in the presence of point for the instruction of all anxious the people, saying, Naboth did blasto do the business effectively and pheme God and the king. Then they quickly.
carried him forth out of the city and “ And it came to pass after these stoned him with stones, that he died. things, that Naboth the Jezreelite had a Then they sent to Jezebel, saying, Navineyard which was in Jezreel hard by both is stoned, and is dead. And it the palace of Ahab, King of Samaria. came to pass when Jezebel heard that And Ahab spake unto Naboth, saying, Naboth was stoned and was dead, that give me thy vineyard that I may have Jezebel said to Ahab, Arise,' take it for a garden of herbs, because it is possession of the vineyard of Naboth near to my house, and I will give thee the Jezreelite which he refused to give for it a better vineyard ; or if it seem thee for money,
for Naboth is not alive, good to thee I will give thee the worth but dead. And it came to pass, when of it in money. And Naboth said to Ahab heard that Naboth was dead, Ahab, the Lord forbid it me that I that Ahab rose up to go down to the should give the inheritance my vineyard of Naboth the Jezreelite to fathers unto thee. And Ahab came take possession of it.”. to his house heavy and displeased be Here we have an evil-eyed faction cause of the word which Naboth the in the person of Ahab, coveting the Jezreelite had spoken to him, for be lawful possession of an humble party had said, I will not give thee the inhe- under the figure of Naboth, and finally ritance of my fathers. And he laid bim successful through the counsel of such down upon his bed and turned away a minister as Jezebel, in grasping the his face and would eat no bread. But possessions and abolishing Naboth's Jezebel his wife came to him and said title and Naboth together. A ready to him, why is thy spirit so sad that mode of doing business this, well worthou eatest no bread? And he said thy of those who now desire the aboliunto her, because I spake unto Naboth tion of tithes. Stone the clergy and the Jezreelite, and said unto him, the work is done!! Having helped give me thy vineyard for money, or our friends with such useful counsel, else, if it please thee, I will give thee we may now say a word on the origianother vineyard for it; and he an- nal purpose or object of tithes. This swered, I will not give thee my vine we may call the cui bono. But here we yard! And Jezebel his wife said unto cannot put forward as much as we are him, Dost thou now govern the king- able and willing, because our argudom of Israel? arise and eat bread and ments may not be suitably esteemed. let thine heart be merry, I will give If the world would grant us an affirmathee the vineyard of Naboth the Jez- tive reply to one question, we might reelite. So she wrote letters in Ahab's run on smoothly enough. The ques: name and sealed them with his seal, tion is this, Have the people souls ? and sent the letters unto the elders and If they have, the propriety of tithes, to the nobles that were in his city or, in other words, the advantage of dwelling with Naboth. And she wrote regular public teachers, educated and in the letters saying, Proclaim a fast, trained in the principles of saving truth, and set Naboth on high among the must be at once allowed! What dull people : And set two sons of Belial inconsistency do those men exhibit, wlio before him, to bear witness against him boast their desires and efforts saying, Thou didst blaspheme God their fellow creatures, who consult and and the king : and then carry him out labour for the benefit and comfort and stone him, that he may die. And of the mere body, while they pass the men of his city, even the elders without the slightest notice, the soul and the nobles who were the inhabitants and its eternal interests! Such mion in his city, did as Jezebel had sent unto either have no souls, and consequently them, and as it was written in the let- feel nothing for those of others; or, if ters which she had sent unto them. they have, stifle sympathy and conThey proclaimed a fast, and set Na science, to work, untroubled, for the
praise which an evil world often lavishes steady people, to fill our ranks, or man upon her favourite minions! Once on a our fleets in honorable war. This may be time, however, the rulers of our nation accounted arguing for the influence of thought much for souls as well as bodies, Christianity in general, rather than for and formed that ecclesiastical arrange- the particular form of support yielded ment which yet continues, with all its to a Christian Ministry. The influence, faults and imperfections, the greatest however, of moralizing Christianity, has blessing in our empire. They provided more to do with tithes than might be a respectable and intelligent succession hastily imagined ; so that really assent of pious men, to act as teachers to the to the value of the former, compels appeople ; and further, endowing such probation of the latter. Abolish tithes with a sufficient support, which should wholly, and let the ministers of religion obviate the necessity of personal labour derive support from their
congregations for subsistence, qualified them to de or individual labours. In either case vote their whole strength and time to it must come to pass, that the general the important callings of religion. tone of public morals will go down.
The two great evils which first re If a congregation be of sufficient wealth quired the labours of the Protestant cler- to afford the minister an adequate progy, were popery and profligacy. The su- vision, we shall find him in a public perstitions and idolatries of the former light possessed of no respect or power, threatened men with the wrath of Him while the very consciousness of this, who has cursed idolatry for ever ; while combined with a sense of obligation to in combination with the latter, they a stated round of simple congregational kept the subjects and members of the exertions, must render him reluctant, Empire in such a state of moral and if not unable, to attempt any thing for physical degradation, as to exclude the general morality. The clergy of our very possibility of any national prospe- establishment are in a certain measure rity or exaltation. Against these evils recognised as officers of government, our clergy waged a successful warfare ; are put forward and supported by the delivered, (as it is this day,) at least thir- authority of government, and, in such teen millions of our people from the an attitude, do possess public respect fangs of Popish idolatry, and spread and influence. This may be termed a abroad a degree of pure morality and factitions influence, not springing dipolitical power unequalled in any infi- rectly from religion. It may be so ; yet del or Popish empire! However this it will stand good, while men are prone was not al. Possessed of God's written to yield a certain reverence to the antestimonies, they made, and still make nunciations and symbols of authority ; known the only way of salvation for and when they accompany truth, no lost sinners, that by faith in Christ, honest man can murmur. Possessed for which many of them died as wit- of such accompaniments, the established nesses, and in which many, through clergy hold weight, not only with inditheir means, did rejoice and do rejoice. viduals attendant on their ministry, but What we have said may not go down with men of different persuasions, and with all men ; yet for the sake of those so long as the extension of religion and who would appear to have no souls, or morality constitutes their work, the having souls, barter them for carnal ad- progress of both will bear proportion to vantage, we may add one word. Can there their influence. All this perishes, the be a doubt as to the inquiry whether it be moment our clergy are reduced to the easier to rule and legislate for a moral condition of merely private ministers of intelligent community or a swinish ig- congregations ! At present the pronorant rabble ? None! Then well. ceeds of tithes maintain every ordained appointed public masters of morality officer of the church. Such a literal must be of essential benefit and assist- independence precludes every necessity ance to a Government, provided always on the part of our ministers, as we have it be a well ordered one, for facilitating said, either toil for support, or bow the exercise of law, affording time, by with sycophant readiness to the taste public tranquillity, for the consideration of their congregations, should that beand arrangement of intricate affairs, come morally depraved. Our preachers foreign or domestic, ensuring the enjoy- are, in the true sense of the word, “ Inment and use of peace, and giving out, dependents ;” and having had their when called for, a healthy, orderly, and principles duly formed by their unshack
led condition, give the best warrant for tiavtion. So that the man who paid their proving to be among the people, the a shilling tithe for one year, if he vensteadiest friends of an upright aud reli- tured to increase his exertions might gious government. In connection we have to pay ten shillings tithe on the throw in a warning to the enemies of ensuing. There lay the tax on industithes who cannot perceive any relation try. What absurdity! As if the owner between them and public morals.- of £10 would find it less difficult to There does exist between the Protes- pay £1, than the owner of £100 would tants of Great Britain
and their clergy to pay £10. However this fool's oha deep attachment. The day of cle- jection has vanished. Tithes, as such, rical indolence has long passed away ; exist no longer. The income of the few inactive, useless men remain in the clergy (by the late act enforcing comlower ranks of our establishment ; the position) now arises from a charge on general benevolence, gentle conduct, land and not on produce—an uuvaryand unaffected piety of our working ing charge, and on this great improvemembers and officers, have had tbeir ment we heartily congratulate both effect in winning the affections of Pro- clergy and people. Still it is insinutestants of every denomination. We ated this charge falls on the poor—the repeat it, a deep attachment exists be. miserable tenantry, men of the spade and tween the Clergy and Protestants of shovel. More blundering falsehood ! Great Britain, Will they—the great Whenever land was formerly tithe free, majority of her population—tamely sit therent demanded, and paid, was always still
, and see a few wrong-headed or equivalent to the rent and tithe of adfalse-hearted slaves of power deprive joining lands, subject to tithe. Hence, the clergy of their long held, long con were composition taken of all lands tofessed rights? Will they tamely suffer morrow, rents would rise to the present robbery to pass into a law, and by cold amount of tithe and composition togeindifference, become a party in casting ther. In this case who would benefit ? out their patrons, the men they love, to The landlord, not the tenant, and construggle with poverty or rest with beg- sequently, in the present state of things gary? Never! Let not the friends if compounded tithe be a tax on any, of honesty, the friends of our church, it is on landed proprietors alone. The tremble at the apprehension of her simple fact is this, land rates at a certain downfall. Let them, the power and value, of this one part is the property strength of the nation, who possess of the church ; annihilate that property ability to protect her and her ministers, and you benefit not the miserable tenlet them use that ability, and despise ant but the aflluent proprietor of the the bullying threats and abortive efforts remaining nine. After all, these things of the few and the malignant to level have been repeated 10,000 times, and still our mighty edifice with a single blow!!! the cry cortinues—“ Away with tithes Our last consideration now opens. May in every form;" “ the detestation of not tithes, in their present obnoxious them is as lasting as the love of jusform, be discontinued? And here a tice,” &c. Pay the clergy from the danger certainly exists. The enemies treasury:"— The clergy have now a subof the church call themselves enemies stantial interest in the empire ; if that of tithes merely—avow an affection for be removed and their incomes made to her orders and spiritual institutes, but depend on the will of every successive express a wondrous abhorrence to the adminstration, they would not rate at mode of maintenance afforded our mi one week's purchase! Let any national nisters—to tithes. This they do with emergency arise-any inadequacy on an amazing profession of solicitude for the part of the minister, who of course the best interests of religion. Tithes, presides over the treasury, to balance they say, are a tax on industry, an in- between revenue and expenditure, the tolerable oppression on the poor farm. mere scratch of his pen, on any pretext ing community, excite the hatred of over the charges for the church, would the labouring classes, and procure for clear his difficulties away, but send our them, against the parsons, the best clergy to struggle for subsistence in nesympathies of the aflluent ! Tithes cessary neglect of every public moral certainly, and but very lately varied and spiritual service. We are aware in proportion to produce ; in pro- that against this danger there exists a portion to labour expended in cul- defence in the provision of the late act
on tithe composition, which appoints to and heart, waging war against the wisthe landlord collecting composition dom and the labours of our ancestors ; from the tenantry and paying it in bulk men whose sole object and ambition to the parochial minister, a certain per- are to subvert that which bears the centage, equivalent to his individual ex- sanction of time, and level to the ground einption from the general charge which all orders in society, that they may lies upon the land. Hence landlords trample on our ruins and rise by our will feel it their advantage to maintain destruction. When the possessions of the present arrangement in preference to the church have fallen, no other proits being changed, for a treasury pay- perty whatever can escape the men who ment to the clergy—a payment to be have tasted the sweets of plunder. defrayed by a national tax, from which Against the unequal distribution of they could hope no exemption. But church property—against the enormous we cannot trust to such a defence alone. revenues of bishops, and the coinparaWe feel bound to call on every lover of tive poverty of curates—against the morality and religion to stand up against fearful practice of thrusting into prefurther encroachments on the rightful ferinent men without piety, or talent, property of the church. We call on or experience, because, forsooth, they them by the regard they bear to men may be sons or relatives of favourites from whose lips they have received the in place and power, much may with jusconsolations of divine truth, their anx- tice advanced. But such objections iety to promote and enjoy the benefits have nothing to do with that reform in of public morality, as well as the propa- the church which is loudly called for, gation of saving knowledge, to show —a reform in discipline and patronage themselves now, a firin phalanx, in resist -a reform to be dreaded as the ruin of ing every inroad on the revenues of our the whole establishinent, if introduced establishment, and make a bold and by enemies--a reform desired and only strenuous effort, to beat down-to beneficial when urged on and fostered silence the present wild outcry of fac- by our tried and faithful friends. To tion, corruption, and revolution. We such a reform we may hereafter allude, call on the men of property to look but before closing would utter one obabroad, aye and at homne too, on the servation to those who are most forward fearful workings of a spirit fast spread- in advancing the objections just noticed. ing amongst the nations-a spirit rag- The men who have done the work of ing in the very dregs of the people, fiends in violence or sedition, ought not whether they appear as the deluded to be foremost to denounce as infamous rabble, or the men of perverted intellect the poor subject of their villainy.
TO THE EDITOR OF THE UNIVERSITY MAGAZINE.
MY DEAR ANTHONY,
carrying it into effect, would preclude On my return this morning from me from offering an opinion, even were the country, I found in my letter- it not inconsistent with a rule I have box a note in your hand-writing, in- gradually been induced to adopt, whereclosing the prospectus of a new Ma- by a restraint has been put on that gazine, and which you blushingly philanthropic propensity so common in avowed, (so far as one can blush upon the world, of lecturing and advising all paper,) was to be conducted under one's acquaintances round. This obliges your own gracious auspices. The name me, at the same time, to mention my perwhich this your first literary Missey is fect state of preparation for others exertabout to adopt, would intimate a rela- ing a similar species of ill-natured self-detion between it and that good old Alma nial towards myself, as thus a full meaMater at whose feet you and I have sat sure of equal justice shall be secured, so long. On the propriety of your en- and a beautiful moral symmetry, as it gaging in such a speculation at all, the were, maintained in the case of an inextensive preparations already made for dividual who is determined in future