« הקודםהמשך »
ANCIENT AND MODERN;
The Rise, Progress, and Variations of Church-Power, are considered in their
Political History of Europe during that Period;
BY THE LATE LEARNED
CHANCELLOR OF THE UNIVERSITY OF GÖTTINGEN;
TRANSLATED FROM THE ORIGINAL LATIN,
WITH NOTES, CHRONOLOGICAL TABLES, AND AN APPENDIX,
BY ARCHIBALD MACLAINE, D.D.
A NEW EDITION IN SIX VOLUMES,
CONTINUED TO THE PRESENT TIME
BY CHARLES COOTE, LL. D.
AND FURNISHED WITH
A DISSERTATION ON THE STATE OF THE
BY THE RIGHT REV,
DR. GEORGE GLEIG OF STIRLING.
PRINTED FOR T, CADELL ; C. AND J. RIVINGTON; J. CUTHELL; J. NUNN; LONGMAN AND CO.; JEFFERY
AND SON; STEWART AND CO.; S. BAGSTER ; R. H. EVANS; J. RICHARDSON; R. SCHOLEY; HATCHARD
SHORT VIEW, OR GENERAL SKETCH,
I. THE History of the Christian Church during this period, instead of a few pages, would alone require a volume; such are the number and import- tory obserance of the materials that it exhibits to an attentive vatious. inquirer. It is therefore to be hoped that, in due time, some able and impartial writer will employ his labors on this interesting subject. At the same time, to render the present work as complete as possible, and to give a certain clue to direct those who teach or who study ecclesiastical history, through a multitude of facts that have not yet been collected, or digested into a regular order, we shall draw a general sketch that will exhibit the principal outlines of the state of religion since the commencement of the eighteenth century. That this sketch may not swell to too great an extent, we shall omit the mention of the authors who have furnished materials for this period of church history. Those who are acquainted with modern literature must know, that there are innumerable productions extant, whence such a variety of lines and colors might be taken, as would render this rough and general draught a finished piece, VOL. VI,
II. The doctrines of Christianity have been proConcerning pagated in Asia, Africa, and America, with equal the prosper zeal, both by the Protestant and Popish missionaries. the church But we cannot say the same thing of the true spirit in general, of the Gospel, or of the religious discipline and insti
tutions which it recommends to the observance of church in Christians ; for it is an undeniable fact, that many of particular.
those whom the Romish missionaries have persuaded to renounce their false gods, are Christians only as far as an external profession and certain religious ceremonies go; and that, instead of departing from the superstitions of their ancestors, they observe them. still, though under a different form. We have, indeed, pompous accounts of the mighty success with which the Jesuitical ministry has been attended among the barbarous and unenlightened nations; and the French Jesuits, in particular, are said to have converted innumerable multitudes in the course of their missions. This perhaps cannot be altogether denied, if we are to call those converts to Christianity who have received some faint and superficial notions of the doctrines of the Gospel; for it is well known, that several congregations of such Christians have been formed by the Jesuits in the East-Indies, and more especially in the Carnatic, the kingdoms of Madura and Marava, some territories on the coast of Malabar, in the kingdom of Tonquin, the Chinese empire, and also in certain provinces of America. These conversions have, in outward appearance, been carried on with particular success, since Antony Veri has had the direction of the foreign missions, and has taken such especial care, that neither hands should fail for this spiritual harvest, nor any expences be spared that might be necessary to the execution of such an arduous and important undertaking. But these pretended conversions, instead of effacing the infamy under which the Jesuits labor in consequence of the iniquitous conduct of their missionaries in former ages, have only served to augment it, and to shew their designs and practices in a still more odious
point of view; for they are known to be much more CENT. XVIII. zealous in satisfying the demands of their avarice and ambition, than in promoting the cause of Christ, and are said to corrupt and modify, by a variety of inventions, the pure doctrine of the Gospel, in order to render it more generally palatable, and to increase the number of their ambiguous converts.
III. A famous question arose in this century, The contest relating to the conduct of the Jesuits in China, and relating to
the lawfultheir manner of promoting the cause of the Gospel, ness by permitting the new converts to observe the reli- allowing the gious rites and customs of their ancestors. This Christians question was decided to the disadvantage of the mis-their ancient sionaries, in 1704, by Clement XI. who, by a solemn rites. edict, forbade the Chinese Christians to practise the religious rites of their ancestors, and more especially those which are celebrated by the Chinese in honor of their deceased parents, and of their great lawgiver Confucius. This severe edict was, nevertheless, considerably mitigated in 1715, in order to appease, no doubt, the resentment of the Jesuits, whom it exasperated in the highest degree; for the pontiff allowed the missionaries to make use of the word tien, to express the divine nature, with the addition of the word tchu, to remove its ambiguity, and make it evident, that it was not the heaven, but the Lord of heaven, that the Christian doctors worshipeda: he also permitted the observance of those ceremonies which had so highly offended the adversaries of the Jesuits, on condition that they should be considered merely as marks of respect to their parents, and as tokens of civil homage to their lawgivers, without being abused to the purposes of superstition, or even being viewed in a religious point of light. In consequence of this second papal edict, considerable indulgence is granted to the Chinese converts ; among other things, they have in their houses tablets, on which the names of their ancestors, and particularly of Confucius, are
* The phrase Tien Tchu signifies the Lord of heaven,