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sostom has this commentary :-“ On this subject,” says he, “ Paul has spoken frequently in his other epistles also, inculcat"ing the obedience of subjects to their princes, as of servants,
to their masters; showing that Christ did not introduce his “ laws with a view to the subversion of the laws of civil polity, " but to amend them, and to prevent superfluous and useless
wars. By this inethod he more successfully attracted Infidel “ Princes to religion and piety, and the faithful to proper obeis dience.”
No other power has been given to the faithful by Christ our Lord, but that which John the Evangelist has described in a few words; that is, the power to be made the sons of God. All other emoluments and comforts of this life he would have them share in common with others, even with the worshippers of the Evil Spirits; which, as St. Augustin puts us in mind, has been so ordered by the mercies of our Saviour, lest those who believe in him should desire such things from his hands as their principal good. (Lib. V. de Civ. Dei. c. xxiv.) These words, by their own weight, and by the authority of St. Augustin, who was himself a Prelate, demonstrate, that Prelates have no right to such things, in consequence of their communion with the Catholic Church. Certainly, the more exalted is their dignity, the more indecorous it would be in them to expect from Christ these worthless earthly things as their sovereign good.
Doubtless, Prelates are possessed of a high power, jurisdiction, authority, and pre-eminence, for the dispensing of Divine Mysteries, - not for the administration of human concerns, as Pope Symmachus observes, or as St. Bernard expresses it, -A power over crimes, not over earthly goods; insomuch, that human and terrestrial things are not the objects of their power, but are a harTest belonging to others; the property of the Civil Magistrates and Princes of the earth. (De Cons. ad Eug. c. 6. lib. v.)
Answer to the Second Question.
Having considered the state of England, and the situation of its Sovereign, the University in like manner is of opinion, That : none of the persons mentioned in the proposition has a power to
absolve the Subjects of his Britannic Majesty from the oath of allegiance which they have taken, or are bound to take to his.said Majesty, or to dispute with its obligations; understanding with St. Augustin and St. John Chrysostom, and even the Apostle St. Paul, those passages of the Sacred Scriptures which promise to just men and believers in Christ deliverance from subjection, as speaking of a future state after this mortal life.
We see that St. Augustin explains those words of the Psalm: The Lord will not leave the rod of sinners upon the lot of the just (Ps, cxxiv. Aug. ibid.) By compariug them with the text of St. Paul to the Ephesians,-Servants be obedient to them that are your masters, according to the flesh (c. vi. v. 5.) in the following manners:-" Christ has no’intention to nourish any pride “ in your hearts during the days of your earthly pilgrimage'; it s has been your lot to become a Christian while you
have a man “ for a master: you are not made a Christian, that you may dis66 dain to be a servant. While you serve a man in obedience to “ the injunctions of Christ, you serve not man but Christ, who
gave such injunctions. Behold, he hath not given freedom to " slaves ; but of bad slaves he makes them good ones! How “ much are the rich indebted to Christ for preserving order in “ their domestic establishments! If there be in thein an un
believing slave he converts him to his faith ; but does not say to “ him, Leave thy master. It is unjust, that he who is a righteous
man, and a believer, should be a slave to one who is a criminak 56 and an Infidel! He says not this; but commands him to
serve with greater fidelity. And that he might inspirit his fole “ lower to this conduct, he hath said, - Serve, because I before
you have served the wicked.' St. Augustin confirms this doce “ trine by the example of the Catholics, who shewed a ready obe“ dience to Julian, an Infidel, apostate, and idolater; and after “ having subjoined, · What I have said of a master and slave, must “ be understood of Potentates and Kings, and all the high power “ of this world,'--he concludes, that the words of the Psalm must “ be understood in this sense : The rod of sinners is felt for a " time, but it shall not remain; we shall not be aggrieved by it “ for ever.' And he adds,— Unjust men are sometimes exalted “ to the honours of this world. When they attain to them, and
are constituted Judges and Kings, since God permits this for s the correction of his people, it can only be, that due honour
may be given to the dignity with which they are invested."
Thus, does St. Augustin expressly declare it be the sense of the Apostle,--that not he, but the Lord, commands subjects to be obedient to the princes during the days of this transitory life; and, although they may be just and faithful followers of Jesus, to look out for an entire emancipation from subjection, only in the world to come. Hence it also follows, that these other words of the Apostle, when writing to the Corinthians (1 Cor. vii. 20, 21.) he says, " Let every man abide in the same calling in which he was called.” “Wast thou called, being a bondman? care not
“ for it; but if thou mayest be made free, use it rather ;"mare to be taken in their literal sense; and they are easily applicable to the subjects of his Britannic Majesty.
St. John Chrysostom agrees with St. Augustin in every part of this doctrine; and, moreover, declares the obligation of civil obe
dience to be incumbent on all;" Whether you be an Apostle," says he,“ or an Evangelist, or a Prophet, or any thing else.” And he searches into the origin of this obligation, saying," If “ it be our duty to do good to those from whom we receive injúries, “ how much more strictly are we bound to be obedient to those who “ load us with benefits? It is not a little that is contributed by “ Princes towards the comforts of our present existence; when " they take arms, repel our enemies, quell seditions in the cities, “ and put an end to every vexatious litigation,- do not tell me,” he proceeds, “ that their power is frequently abused; but con“ sider the advantages which flow from the establishment of civil “ authority, and you will discover much wisdom in the institu“ tion :-for where there is no government, there is the reign of
confusion, and of every evil. Render, therefore, to all men “ their dues; tribute to whom tribute is due, custom to whom
custom, fear to whom fear, honour to whom honour; owe no man any thing, but to love one another.” He has not said Give, but Render; and he has added, their dues; for in this you are not conferring a favour. “ If you reply, that as a Disciple “ of Jesus, you enjoy higher privileges,-know that your time is
not yet come; you are a stranger and a pilgrim; the day will « arrive when you will far outshine the splendors of earthly dig
nity. Now your life is hidden with Christ in God. When " Christ 'shall appear, then shall you also
appear with him in “ glory. Therefore, seek not your retribution in this transitory “ life. If you must stand with reverence before an earthly
prince, think not that this is unworthy your native dignity; for “ such is the will of God, that the prince whom he hath created
may possess his entire strength.”
Since, then, in the judgment of both these Holy Fathers, it is the sense of the Apostle, that Tribute, custom, fear, honour, are due to princes, both by the command of God, and as a debt of retribution for the benefits which they confer on the State; maintaining order and peace, and performing other good offices to their subjecis; since, in the present constitution of human things, due honour must necessarily be given to the higher powers; and since an oath of allegiance does not found any new or unusual obligation, but strengthens, by the sanction of religion, an obligation which previously existed, --it follows, that no one can absolve the subjects of his Britannic Majesty from such an oath, nor dispense with its obligations; therefore, the Prince must ever retain his strength, and the subjects must abide in the same calling in which they are called,
Answer to the Third Question.
So persuaded is the University, that a doctrine which would exempt Catholics from the obligation of keeping faith with Here. tics, or any other persons who may dissent from them in matters of religion; instead of being an article of the Catholic faith, is en
tirely repugnant to its tenets, that she could not have believed it possible there should exist any person who would dare to impute to Catholics any thing so iniquitous, had she not learnt from the things that are written in the Sacred Scriptures for our instruction, that the same Pharisees who had heard our Lord openly deliver this injuction,-“ Render to Cæsar the things that are Cæsar's," afterwards laid this crime to his charge. We have found this man perverting our nation, forbidding to give tribute to Cæsar. But the Devil who had put this into their hearts, and moved their tongues to the uttering of such falsehoods as could induce the Jewish multitude, who considered Christ as a prophet, to cry out with a loud voice,“ Crucity him! crucify him!” has never since desisted from perverting others in like manner.
It was alleged everywhere against the Apostles, that they were seditious men, introducers of innovations, and both by their doctrine and conduct, aiming at the subversion of all legal authority. On this account, as St. John Chrysostom observes, the Apostle of the Gentiles treats so often of keeping faith with princes, masters, friends, enemies, just and unjust, and frequently inculcates, that we must give them no cause for offence, but must do them every friendly office; and the same has been perpetually taught by the Catholic Church in her writings, by her words, and her actions.
Still the Father of Lies has persisted in the same attempt. England is not ignorant of the calumnies vented against the Catholics by the Apostate Oates. The assertions likewise are well known which frequently have been maintained with so much industry and art; the art of deceiving and lying, in which he so much excels. Ile was crafty enough to persuade some persons that a Canon was framed by the Sixth General Council, by which Catholics are freed from any obligation to keep faith with Heretics, or any other persons who may dissent from their religious tenets; and that a similar Canon was published by the Council of Constance, by virtue of which he affirmed, -That faith was not kept with John Huss, and Jerome of Prague.
But the first of these Canons is not of the Sixth General Council, nor is it of any authority; on the contrary, it has been condemned by the Church. As to the Council of Constance, nothing was there defined concerning breach of faith. If we were to determine the Question from the Acts of that Synod, we should be forced to draw a contrary conclusion; for the Fathers of the Council declared, that thi retore, they were at liberty to examine the doctrines of John Huss, because they had not granted him 3 sa le conduct.
A safe conduct had indeed been granted him by the Emperor Sigismund, who, nevertheless afterwards ordered him to be burnt; but still without any breach of faith. For he had given him a safe conduct only in the ordinary form; viz. against lawless violence,
and with this condition annexed to it, that if he fed, he should forfeit his life. Huss fled in violation of his engagement.
To Jerome of Prague a safe conduct was granted by the Council itself, not including any special immunities; not authorizing any daring attempts wbich he should afterwards make, but upon this condition,- that the course of Justice should not be impeded. lle was present in the Council; abjured his heresies; and was exposed to no molestation. But when afterwards, contrary to his promises, he had taken himself to flight, and began to spread abroad amongst the vulgar that he had consented to falschood in agreeing to the condemnation of Wickliff and John Hus; that he could tind no errors in their doctrine; that Wickliff was an Evangelical preacher; and when at length, he obstinately maintained these assertions before the Fathers of the Council, Sigismund judged that such behaviour was not to be tolerated in one who had broken his faith ; and surely, what man in his senses would assert, that any one ought to be suffered, with impunity, to utter against God and man, absurdities and blasphemies like the following? Ist. God ought to obey the Devil. 2d. No inan is a Civil Ruler, no man is a Prelate, no man is a Bishop, while he is in the state of mortal sin. 3d. The multitude have a right to punish, according to their pleasure, the crimes of their Rulers. 4th. Oaths which are taken to confirm contracts, or civil negotiations, are unlawful. So much for those Canons by which they have endeavoured to spirit up envy and odium against Catholics.
Catholics have been taught by St. James the Apostle that their speech must be Yea, yea; No, no: guided by this wisdom, the Catholic Church has ever reprobated falsehood.
But to swear or to promise any thing without actually performing it, is a falsehood. The Catholic Church is not so devoid of judgment, as to have enacted a law, or promulgated a decree which would banish from the Catholic World those excellent virtues, Truth, Fidelity, and Justice, without which there could be no happiness for individuals, no civil societies, nor intercourse ainong men.
What Caa tholic ever taught that it was lawful to lie, to deceive, or to violate any natural right? Our religion, on the contrary, teaches, That faith must be kept with all men, whatever be their religion, or though they be of no religion, without a single exception, in every promise which of its own nature is lawful and valid, whether in peace or in war, in the concerns of religion, in matrimony, in safe conducts, in civil commerce with friends or with enemies.
These being our sentiments, as may be evinced likewise by what has been said relative to the first and second questions, that the doctrine of the Catholic Church may be clearly and distinctly understood by all the world, we shall only add, triat no obligation arising from the laws of nature, of nations, or of en, which is founded in natural reason, has been aliered or we replenia by nie Redeeiner; but that every such obligation has beca railer height: ened and exalted to greater perfection ; has been strengthed by C2