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testant of the French huguenot church, as in their catechism, on the 10th article of the creed, they profess, that “out of the church there is nothing but " death and damnation.”
XIII. This leads us to observe, that passages are often cited from the works of roman-catholic writers, which express, that the roman-catholic religion has always been the same ; and that those who say that the modern roman-catholics differ in one iota from their predecessors, either deceive themselves or wish to deceive others. These passages have been cited to prove, that whatever doctrine any pope or any ecclesiastical body, or any writer of approved authority, has maintained or sanctioned in former times, is universally approved of by the modern catholics. But this is a very unjust perversion of the meaning of the writers from whose writings these passages, or passages of a similar import, are cited. Not one of them approves
of any act of temporal power which the pope or any body of churchmen have ever claimed in right of their spiritual character. In the cited passages, the writers mean to assert no more than that the faith and essential discipline of roman-catholics have always been what they now are. But they admit that the resort of the popes, or of any other ecclesiastics to temporal power, for effecting the object of their spiritual commission, was not only no part of the faith or essential discipline of the church, but
was diametrically opposite to its faith and discipline. The passages, therefore, to which we allude, can never be brought to prove the position for which they are quoted. To urge them for such a purpose, is evidently a gross perversion of their meaning.
XIV. I SHALL only notice, one further objection :The supposed immensity of the distance, between the creed of the established, and the creed of the roman-catholic church; from which, it is inferred, that there always must be a spirit of religious discord, and never a communion of civil rights between the members of them.-To this, the experience of mankind gives a clear answer,--if you remove persecution, you remove discord. If
do not compel a person to enter your church, he will shake hands with you at the door of it: and many years will not pass away before you will meet him at the same altar.
But, is the difference between the churches really as great as it is generally thought?—The divine precept, that we should love our neighbour as ourselves, is equally recognized by protestants and roman-catholics. They are equally willing to have their conduct, on every occasion of life, tried by that golden rule. What further can government require, on the moral code of her subjects?
In respect to their religious code,-All christians agree, ist. that there is one God; 2dly, that, he is a being of infinite perfection; 3dly, that, he directs all things by his providence; 4thly, that, it is our duty to love God with all our hearts; 5thly, that, it is our duty to repent of our sins; 6thly, that, God pardons the truly penitent; 7thly, that, there is a future state of rewards and punishments, where all mankind shall be judged according to their works; 8thly, that, God sent his Son into the world, to be its saviour, the author of eternal salvation to all that obey him; gthly, that, he is the true Messiah; 10thly, that, he worked miracles, suffered, died, and rose again, as is related in the four gospels; and 11thly, that, he will, hereafter, make a second appearance on the earth, raise all mankind from the dead, judge the world in righteousness, bestow eternal life on the virtuous, and punish the workers of iniquity.
In the belief of these articles, all christians, roman-catholics, lutherans, calvinists, arminians, and socinians, are agreed. In addition to these articles, each division and sub-division of christians has its own tenets. Now, let each settle among its own members, what are the articles of belief, peculiar to them, which, in their cool, deliberate judgment, they consider as absolutely necessary that a person should believe, to be a member of the church of Christ ; let these articles be divested of all foreign matter, and expressed in perspicuous, exact, and unequivocal terms; and above all, let each distinction of christians earnestly wish to find an agreement between themselves and their fellow christians :
the result of a discussion, conducted on this plan, would most assuredly be, to convince all christians, that the essential articles of religious credence, in which, there is a real difference ainongst christians, are, not very numerous; and that, if the re-union of christians, be no more than a golden dream, the possible approximation to it is nearer than is
And, after all, is the reunion of the romancatholic and protestant churches absolutely impossible ?-Bossuet, the glory of the roman-catholic church, and her ablest champion, thought it was not.— Towards the end of the seventeenth century, the emperor Leopold, and several princes in Germany, conceived a project of re-uniting the romancatholic and lutheran churches. In consequence of it, a correspondence took place between Bossuet, on the part of the roman-catholics, and Molanus and Leibniz, on the part of the lutherans. Molanus, was director of the protestant churches and consistories of Hanover; Leibniz, was a member of the aulic council. In the exact sciences, he was inferior to Newton alone ; in metaphysics, he had no superior; in general learning, he had scarcely a rival ; in the theological disputes of the times, he was singularly conversant. The correspondence between these great men, on the subject of the re-union, may be seen, in the Euvres Posthumes de Bossuet, vol. I. ; Nouvelle Edition des Cuvres de Bossuet, vol. XI.; Leilmipii Opera, studio Lud. Dutens,
vols. I. f. V.; and the Pensées de Leibniz, 2 vols. 8vo. Every word of the correspondence deserves the perusal, both of the scholar and the divine. A short view of it is given, in the account of the life and writings of Bossuet, recently published by the writer of these pages. It continued during ten years :-I shall transcribe from it, the two following passages, from the letters written by Bossuet to Leibniz. “ The council of Trent,” he says, in one of them, “ is our stay; but, we shall not use it, to prejudice
our cause. We shall deal, more fairly, with our opponents. We shall make the council serve for
a statement and explanation of our doctrines. “ Thus, we shall come to an explanation on those
points, in which, either of us imputes to the other, “ what he does not believe, and, on which, we dis
pute, only because we misconceive each other. “ This may lead us far : for, Molanus has actually “ conciliated the points, so essential, of justification “ and the eucharist. Nothing is wanting to him,
on that side, but that he should be avowed. Why “ should we not hope, to conclude, in the same
manner, disputes less difficult and of less impor“ tance ?” The letter, from which the passage
is extracted, was written in an early stage of the controversy: what might not be hoped from such a spirit of good sense and conciliation !
—The letter, from which the following passage is extracted, was written in the tenth year of the correspondence: and I feel, that every reader of these pages will lament, with