The Literary Remains Of Samuel Taylor Coleridge
Edited By Henry Nelson Coleridge
Part 6 out of 7
In truth, this eloquent Treatise may be compared to a statue of Janus,
with one face fixed on certain opponents, full of life and force, a
witty scorn on the lip, a brow at once bright and weighty with
satisfying reason: the other looking at the something instead of that
which had been confuted, maimed, noseless, and weather-bitten into a
sort of visionary confusion and indistinctness.  It looks like
this--aye and very like that--but how like it is, too, such another
AN ANSWER TO A LETTER WRITTEN BY THE RIGHT REV. THE LORD BISHOP OF
ROCHESTER, CONCERNING THE CHAPTER OF ORIGINAL SIN, IN THE "UNUM
Ib. p. 367.
And they who are born eunuchs should be less infected by Adam's
pollution, by having less of concupiscence in the great instance of
The fact happens to be false: and then the vulgarity, most unworthy of
our dear Jeremy Taylor, of taking the mode of the manifestation of the
disobedience of the will to the reason, for the disobedience itself. St.
James would have taught him that he who offendeth against one, offendeth
against all; and that there is some truth in the Stoic paradox that all
crimes are equal. Equal is indeed a false phrase; and therein consists
the paradox, which in ninety-nine cases out of a hundred is the same as
the falsehood. The truth is they are all the same in kind; but unequal
in degree. They are all alike, though not equally, against the
Ib. p. 369.
So that there is no necessity of a third place; but it concludes only
that in the state of separation from God's presence there is great
variety of degrees and kinds of evil, and every one is not the
What is this? If hell be a state, and not a mere place, and a particular
state, its meaning must in common sense be a state of the worst sort. If
then there be a mere 'paena damni', that is, the not being so blest as
some others may be; this is a different state 'in genere' from the 'paena
sensus': 'ergo', not hell; 'ergo' rather a third state; or else heaven.
For every angel must be in it, than whom another angel is happier; that
is negatively damned, though positively very happy.
Ib. p. 370-1.
Just so it is in infants: hell was not made for man, but for devils;
and therefore it must be something besides mere nature that can bear
any man thither: mere nature goes neither to heaven or hell.
And how came the devils there? If it be hard to explain how Adam fell;
how much more hard to solve how purely spiritual beings could fall? And
nature! What? so much of nature, and no kind of attempt at a definition
of the word? Pray what is nature?
Ib. p. 371.
I do not say that we, by that sin (original) deserved that death,
neither can death be properly a punishment of us, till we superadd
some evil of our own; yet Adam's sin deserved it, so that it was
justly left to fall upon us, we, as a consequent and punishment of his
sin, being reduced to our natural portion.
How? What is this but flying to the old Supra-lapsarian blasphemy of a
right of property in God over all his creatures, and destroying that
sacred distinction between person and thing which is the light and the
life of all law human and divine? Mercy on us! Is not agony, is not the
stone, is not blindness, is not ignorance, are not headstrong, inherent,
innate, and connate, passions driving us to sin when reason is least
able to withhold us,--are not all these punishments, grievous
punishments, and are they not inflicted on the innocent babe? Is not
this the result infused into the 'milk not mingled' of St. Peter; 
spotting the immaculate begotten, souring and curdling the innocence
'without sin or malice'?  And if this be just, and compatible with
God's goodness, why all this outcry against St. Austin and the
Calvinists and the Lutherans, whose whole addition is a lame attempt to
believe guilt, where they cannot find it, in order to justify a
punishment which they do find?
Ib. p. 379.
But then for the evil of punishment, that may pass further than the
action. If it passes upon the innocent, it is not a punishment to
them, but an evil inflicted by right of dominion; but yet by reason of
the relation of the afflicted to him that sinned, to him it is a
Here the snake peeps out, and now takes its tail into its mouth. Right
of dominion! Nonsense! Things are not objects of right or wrong. Power
of dominion I understand, and right of judgment I understand; but right
of dominion can have no immediate, but only a relative, sense. I have a
right of dominion over this estate, that is, relatively to all other
persons. But if there be a 'jus dominandi' over rational and free
agents, then why blame Calvin? For all attributes are then merged in
blind power: and God and fate are the same:
[Greek: Zeus kai Moira kai aeerophoitis Erinnus]
Strange Trinity! God, Necessity, and the Devil. But Taylor's scheme has
far worse consequences than Calvin's: for it makes the whole scheme of
Redemption a theatrical scenery. Just restore our bodies and corporeal
passions to a perfect 'equilibrium' and fortunate instinct, and, there
being no guilt or defect in the soul, the Son of God, the Logos, and
Supreme Reason, might have remained unincarnate, uncrucified. In short,
Socinianism is as inevitable a deduction from Taylor's scheme as Deism
or Atheism is from Socinianism.
The whole of Taylor's confusion originated in this;--first, that he and
his adversaries confound original with hereditary sin; but chiefly that
neither he nor his adversaries had considered that guilt must be a
'noumenon'; but that our images, remembrances, and consciousnesses of
our actions are 'phaenomena'. Now the 'phaenomenon' is in time, and an
effect: but the 'noumenon' is not in time any more than it is in space.
The guilt has been before we are even conscious of the action; therefore
an original sin (that is, a sin universal and essential to man as man,
and yet guilt, and yet choice, and yet amenable to punishment), may be
at once true and yet in direct contradiction to all our reasonings
derived from 'phaenomena', that is, facts of time and space. But we ought
not to apply the categories of appearance to the [Greek: ontos onta] of
the intelligible or causative world. This (I should say of Original Sin)
is mystery! We do not so properly believe it, as we know it. What is
actual must be possible. But if we will confound actuals with reals, and
apply the rules of the latter to cases of the former, we must blame
ourselves for the clouds and darkness and storms of opposing winds,
which the error will not fail to raise. By the same process an Atheist
may demonstrate the contradictory nature of eternity, of a being at once
infinite and of resistless causality, and yet intelligent. Jeremy Taylor
additionally puzzled himself with Adam, instead of looking into the fact
How came it that Taylor did not apply the same process to the congeneric
question of the freedom of the will? In half a dozen syllogisms he must
have gyved and hand-cuffed himself into blank necessity and mechanic
motions. All hangs together. Deny Original Sin, and you will soon deny
free will;--then virtue and vice;--and God becomes 'Abracadabra'; a
sound, nothing else.
SECOND LETTER TO THE BISHOP OF ROCHESTER.
Ib. p. 390-1.
To this it is answered as you see, there is a double guilt; a guilt of
person, and of nature. That is taken away, this is not: for sacraments
are given to persons, not to natures.
I need no other passage but this to convince me that Jeremy Taylor, the
angle in which the two 'apices' of logic and rhetoric meet,
consummate in both, was yet no metaphysician. Learning, fancy,
discursive intellect, 'tria juncta in uno', and of each enough to
have alone immortalized a man, he had; but yet [Greek: ouden meta
physin]. Images, conceptions, notions, such as leave him but one rival,
Shakspeare, there were; but no ideas. Taylor was a Gassendist. O! that
he had but meditated in the silence of his spirit on the mystery of an
'I AM'! He would have seen that a person, 'quoad' person, can
have nothing common or generic; and that where this finds place, the
person is corrupted by introsusception of a nature, which becomes evil
thereby, and on this relation only is an evil nature. The nature itself,
like all other works of God, is good, and so is the person in a yet
higher sense of the word, good, like all offsprings of the Most High.
But the combination is evil, and this not the work of God; and one of
the main ends and results of the doctrine of Original Sin is to silence
and confute the blasphemy that makes God the author of sin, without
avoiding it by fleeing to the almost equal blasphemy against the
conscience, that sin in the sense of guilt does not exist.
THE REAL PRESENCE AND SPIRITUAL OF CHRIST IN THE BLESSED SACRAMENT,
PROVED AGAINST THE DOCTRINE OF TRANSUBSTANTIATION.
Perhaps the most wonderful of all Taylor's works. He seems, if I may so
say, to have transubstantiated his vast imagination and fancy into
subtlety not to be evaded, acuteness to which nothing remains
unpierceable, and indefatigable agility of argumentation. Add to these
an exhaustive erudition, and that all these are employed in the service
of reason and common sense; whereas in some of his Tracts he seems to
wield all sorts of wisdom and wit in defence of all sorts of folly and
stupidity. But these were 'ad popellum', and by virtue of the 'falsitas
dispensativa', which he allowed himself.
The question of transubstantiation.
I have no doubt that if the Pythagorean bond had successfully
established itself, and become a powerful secular hierarchy, there would
have been no lack of furious partizans to assert, yea, and to damn and
burn such as dared deny, that one was the same as two; two being two in
the same sense as one is one; that consequently 2+2=2 and 1+1=4. But I
should most vehemently doubt that this was the intention of Pythagoras,
or the sense in which the mysterious dogma was understood by the
thinking part of his disciples, who nevertheless were its professed
believers. I should be prepared to find that the true import and purport
of the article was no more than this;--that the one in order to its
manifestation must appear in and as two; that the act of re-union was
simultaneous with that of the self-production, (in the geometrical use
of the word 'produce,' as when a point produces, or evolves, itself on
each side into a bipolar line), and that the Triad is therefore the
necessary form of the Monad.
Even so is the dispute concerning Transubstantiation. I can easily
believe that a thousand monks and friars would pretend, as Taylor says,
to 'disbelieve their eyes and ears, and defy their own reason,' and to
receive the dogma in the sense, or rather in the nonsense, here ascribed
to it by him, namely, that the phenomenal bread and wine were the
phenomenal flesh and blood. But I likewise know that the respectable
Roman Catholic theologians state the article free from a contradiction
in terms at least; namely, that in the consecrated elements the
'noumena' of the phenomenal bread and wine are the same with that which
was the 'noumenon' of the phenomenal flesh and blood of Christ when on
Let M represent a slab or plane of mahogany,
and m its ordinary supporter or under-prop; and
let S represent a slab or plane of silver,
and s its supporter.
Now to affirm that M = S is a contradiction,
or that m = s;
but it is no contradiction to say, that on certain occasions
(S having been removed)
s is substituted for m,
and that what was M/m,
is by the command of the common master changed into M/s.
It may be false in fact, but it is not a self-contradiction in the
The mode in which s subsists in M/s may be inconceivable,
but not more so than the mode in which m subsists in M/m,
or that in which s subsisted in S/s.
I honestly confess that I should confine my grounds of opposition to the
article thus stated to its unnecessariness, to the want of sufficient
proofs from Scripture that I am bound to believe or trouble my head with
it. I am sure that Bishop Bull, who really did believe the Trinity,
without either Tritheism or Sabellianism, could not consistently have
used the argument of Taylor or of Tillotson in proof of the absurdity of
Ib. p. ccccxvi.
But for our dear afflicted mother, she is under the portion of a child
in the state of discipline, her government indeed hindered, but her
worshippings the same, the articles as true, and those of the church
of Rome as false as ever.
O how much there is in these few words,--the sweet and comely
sophistry, not of Taylor, but of human nature. Mother! child! state of
discipline! government hindered! that is to say, in how many instances,
scourgings hindered, dungeoning in dens foul as those of hell,
mutilation of ears and noses, and flattering the King mad with
assertions of his divine right to govern without a Parliament, hindered.
The best apology for Laud, Sheldon, and their fellows will ever be that
those whom they persecuted were as great persecutors as themselves, and
much less excusable.
Ib. s. ii. p. 422.
'In Synaxi Transubstantiationem sero definivit Ecclesia; diu satis
erat credere, sive sub pane consecrate, sive quocunque modo adesse
verum corpus Christi;' so said the great Erasmus.
'Verum corpus,' that is, 'res ipsissima,' or the thing in its actual
self, opposed [Greek: to phainomen'o].
Ib. s. vi. p. 425.
Now that the spiritual is also a real presence, and that they are
hugely consistent, is easily credible to them that believe the gifts
of the Holy Ghost are real graces, and a spirit is a proper substance.
But how the body of Christ, as opposed to his Spirit and to his Godhead,
can be taken spiritually, 'hic labor, hoc opus est.' Plotinus says,
[Greek: kai hae hylae as'omatos]; so we must say here [Greek: kai to
Ib. s. vii. p. 426.
So we may say of the blessed Sacrament; Christ is more truly and
really present in spiritual presence than in corporal; in the heavenly
effect than in the natural being.
But the presence of Christ is not in question, but the presence of
Christ's body and blood. Now that Christ effected much for us by coming
in the body, which could not or would not have been effected had he not
assumed the body, we all, Socinians excepted, believe; but that his body
effected it, other than as Christ in the body, where shall we find? how
can we understand?
Ib. p. 427.
So when it is said, 'Flesh and blood shall not inherit the kingdom of
God,' that is, corruption shall not inherit; and in the resurrection,
our bodies are said to be spiritual, that is, not in substance, but in
effect and operation.
This is, in the first place, a wilful interpretation, and secondly, it
is absurd; for what sort of flesh and blood would incorruptible flesh
and blood be? As well might we speak of marble flesh and blood. But in
Taylor's mind, as seen throughout, the logician was predominant over the
philosopher, and the fancy outbustled the pure intuitive imagination. In
the sense of St. Paul, as of Plato and all other dynamic philosophers,
flesh and blood is 'ipso facto' corruption, that is, the spirit of life
in the mid or balancing state between fixation and reviviscence. 'Who
shall deliver me from the body of this death?' is a Hebraism for 'this
death which the body is.' For matter itself is but 'spiritus in
coagulo,' and organized matter the coagulum in the act of being
restored; it is then repotentiating. Stop its self-destruction as
matter, and you stop its self-reproduction as a vital organ. In short,
Taylor seems to fall into the very fault he reproves in Bellarmine, and
with this additional evil, that his reasoning looks more like tricking
or explaining away a mystery. For wherein does the Sacrament of the
Eucharist differ from that of Baptism, nay, even of grace before meat,
when performed fervently and in faith? Here too Christ is present in the
hearts of the faithful by blessing and grace. I see at present no other
way of interpreting the text so as not to make the Sacrament a mere
arbitrary 'memento,' but by an implied negative. In propriety, the word
is confined to no portion of corporality in particular. "This (the bread
and wine) are as truly my flesh and blood as the 'phaenomena' which you
now behold and name as such."
Ib. s. ix. p. 429.
From this paragraph I conclude, though not without some perplexity, that
by 'the body and blood verily and indeed taken,' we are not to
understand body and blood in their limited sense, as contradistinguished
from the soul or Godhead of Christ, but as a 'periphrasis' for Christ
himself, or at least Christ's humanity. Taylor, however, has
misconstrued Phavorinus' meaning though not his words. 'Spiritualia
eterna quoad spiritum.' But this is the very depth of the purified
Ib. s. x. p. 430.
But because the words do perfectly declare our sense, and are owned
publicly in our doctrine and manner of speaking, it will be in vain to
object against us those words of the Fathers, which use the same
expressions: for if by virtue of those words 'really,'
'substantially,' 'corporally,' 'verily and indeed,' and 'Christ's body
and blood,' the Fathers shall be supposed to speak for
Transubstantiation, they may as well suppose it to be our doctrine
too; for we use the same words, and therefore those authorities must
signify nothing against us, unless these words can he proved in them
to signify more than our sense of them does import; and by this truth,
many, very many of their pretences are evacuated.
A sophism, dearest Jeremy. We use the words because these early Fathers
used them, and have forced our own definitions on them. But should we
have chosen these words to express our opinion by, if there had been no
controversy on the subject? But the Fathers chose and selected these
words as the most obvious and natural.
Ib. s. xi. p. 431.
It is much insisted upou that it be inquired whether, when we say we
believe Christ's body to be really in the Sacrament, we mean 'that
body, that flesh, that was born of the Virgin Mary, that was
crucified, dead, and buried?' I answer, that I know none else that he
had or hath: there is but one body of Christ natural and glorified.
This may be true, or at least intelligible, of Christ's humanity or
personal identity as [Greek: noaeton ti], but applied to the phenomenal
flesh and blood, it is nonsense. For if every atom of the human frame be
changed by succession in eleven or twelve years, the body born of the
Virgin could not be the body crucified, much less the body crucified be
the body glorified, spiritual and incorruptible. I construe the words of
Clement of Alexandria, quoted by Taylor below,  literally, and they
perfectly express my opinion; namely, that Christ, both in the
institution of the Eucharist and in the sixth chapter of John, spoke of
his humanity as a 'noumenon,' not of the specific flesh and blood which
were its 'phaenomena' at the last supper and on the cross. But Jeremy
Taylor was a semi-materialist, and though no man better managed the
logic of substance and accidents, he seems to have formed no clear
metaphysical notion of their actual meaning. Taken notionally, they are
mere interchangeable relations, as in concentric circles the outmost
circumference is the substance, the other circles its accidents; but if
I begin with the second and exclude the first from my thoughts, then
this is substance and the interior ones accidents, and so on; but taken
really, we mean the complex action of co-agents on our senses, and
accident as only an agent acting on us. Thus we say, the beer has turned
sour: sour is the accident of the substance beer. But, in fact, a new
agent, oxygen, has united itself with other agents in the joint
composition, the essence of which new comer is to be sour: at all
events, Taylor's construction is a mere assertion, meaning no more than
'in this sense only can I subscribe to the words of Bertram, Jerome, and
If a re-union of the Lutheran and English Churches with the Roman were
desirable and practicable, the best way, [Greek: h_os emoige dokei,]
would be, that any remarkable number should offer union on a given
profession of faith chiefly negative, as we protest against the
authority of the Church in temporals; that the words agreed to by Beza
and Espencoeus, on the part of the Reformers and Romanists respectively,
at Poissy, used with implicit faith, shall suffice. 'Credimus in usu
coentae Dominicae vere, reipsa, substantialiter, seu in substantia, verum
corpus et sanguinem Christi spirituali et ineffabili modo esse,
exhiberi, sumi a fidelibus communicantibus.'
Ib. s. in. p. 434.
The other Schoolman I am to reckon in this account, is Gabriel Biel.
Taylor should have informed the reader that Gabriel Biel is but the echo
of Occam, and that both were ante-Lutheran Protestants in heart, and as
far as they dared, in word likewise.
Ib. s. vi. p. 436.
So that if, according to the Casuists, especially of the Jesuits'
order, it be lawful to follow the opinion of any one probable doctor,
here we have five good men and true, besides Occam, Bassolis, and
Mechior Camus, to acquit us from our search after this question in
Taylor might have added Erasmus, who, in one of his letters, speaking of
Oecolampadius's writings on the Eucharist, says '"ut seduci posse
videantur etiam electi,"' and adds, that he should have embraced his
interpretations, '"nisi obstaret consensus Ecclesiae;"' that is,
Oecolampadius has convinced me, and I should avow my conviction, but for
motives of personal prudence and regard for the public peace.
OF THE SIXTH CHAPTER OF ST. JOHN'S GOSPEL.
Ib. p. 436.
I cannot but think that the same mysterious truth, whatever it be, is
referred to in the Eucharist and in this chapter of St. John; and I
wonder that Taylor, who makes the Eucharist a spiritual sumption of
Christ, should object to it. A = C and B = C, therefore A = B. 
Ib. s. iv. p. 440.
The error on both sides, Roman and Protestant, originates in the
confusion of sign or figure with symbol, which latter is always an
essential part of that, of the whole of which it is the representative.
Not seeing this, and therefore seeing no 'medium' between the whole
thing and the mere metaphor of the thing, the Romanists took the former
or positive pole of the error, the Protestants the latter or negative
pole. The Eucharist is a symbolic, or solemnizing and 'totum in parte'
acting of an act, which in a true member of Christ's body is supposed to
be perpetual. Thus the husband and wife exercise the duties of their
marriage contract of love, protection, obedience, and the like, all the
year long, and yet solemnize it by a more deliberate and reflecting act
of the same love on the anniversary of their marriage.
Ib. s. ix p. 447-8.
That which neither can feel or be felt, see or be seen, move or be
moved, change or be changed, neither do or suffer corporally, cannot
certainly be eaten corporally; but so they affirm concerning the body
of our blessed Lord; it cannot do or suffer corporally in the
Sacrament, therefore it cannot be eaten corporally, any more than a
man can chew a spirit, or eat a meditation, or swallow a syllogism
into his belly.
Absurd as the doctrine of Transubstantiation may thus be made, yet
Taylor here evidently confounds a spirit, 'ens realissimum,' with a mere
notion or 'ens logicum.' On this ground of the spirituality of all
powers [Greek: donameis], it would not be difficult to evade many of
Taylor's most plausible arguments. Enough, however, and more than enough
would be left in their full force.
Ib. p. 448.
Besides this, I say this corporal union of our bodies to the body of
God incarnate, which these great and witty dreamers dream of, would
make man to be God.
But yet not God, nor absolutely. 'I am in my Father, even so ye are in
Ib. s. xxii. p. 456.
By this time I hope I may conclude, that Transubstantiation is not
taught by our blessed Lord in the sixth chapter of St. John: 'Johannes
de tertia et Eucharistica caena nihil quidem scribit, eo quod caeteri
tres Evangelistae ante ilium eam plene descripsissent.' They are the
words of Stapleton and are good evidence against them.
I cannot satisfy my mind with this reason, though the one commonly
assigned both before and since Stapleton: and yet ignorant, when, why,
and for whom John wrote his Gospel, I cannot substitute a better or more
probable one. That John believed the command of the Eucharist to have
ceased with the destruction of the Jewish state, and the obligation of
the cup of blessing among the Jews,--or that he wrote it for the Greeks,
unacquainted with the Jewish custom,--would be not improbable, did we
not know that the Eastern Church, that of Ephesus included, not only
continued this Sacrament, but rivalled the Western Church in the
Ib. s. i. p. 503.
Now I argue thus: if we eat Christ's natural body, we eat it either
naturally or spiritually: if it be eaten only spiritually, then it is
spiritually digested, &c.
What an absurdity in the word 'it' in this passage and throughout!
Vol. X. s. iii. p. 3.
The accidents, proper to a substance, are for the manifestation, a
notice of the substance, not of themselves; for as the man feels, but
the means by which he feels is the sensitive faculty, so that which is
felt, is the substance, and the means by which it is felt is the
This is the language of common sense, rightly so called, that is, truth
without regard or reference to error; thus only differing from the
language of genuine philosophy, which is truth intentionally guarded
against error. But then in order to have supported it against an acute
antagonist, Taylor must, I suspect, have renounced his Gassendis and
other Christian 'Epicuri.' His antagonist would tell him; when a man
strikes me with a stick, I feel the stick, and infer the man; but 'pari
ratione,' I feel the blow, and infer the stick; and this is tantamount
to,--I feel, and by a mechanism of my thinking organ attribute causation
to precedent or co-existent images; and this no less in states in which
you call the images unreal, that is, in dreams, than when they are
asserted by you to have an outward reality.
Ib. p. 4.
But when a man, by the ministry of the senses, is led into the
apprehension of a wrong object, or the belief of a false proposition,
then he is made to believe a lie, &c.
There are no means by which a man without chemical knowledge could
distinguish two similarly shaped lumps, one of sugar and another of
sugar of lead. Well! a lump of sugar of lead lies among other artefacts
on the shelf of a collector; and with it a label, "Take care! this is
not sugar, though it looks so, but crystallized oxide of lead, and it is
a deadly poison." A man reads this label, and yet takes and swallows the
lump. Would Taylor assert that the man was made to swallow a poison? Now
this (would the Romanist say) is precisely the case of the consecrated
elements, only putting food and antidote for poison; that is, as far as
this argument of Jeremy Taylor is concerned.
Ib. p. 5.
Just upon this account it is, that St. John's argument had been just
nothing in behalf of the whole religion: for that God was incarnate,
that Jesus Christ did such miracles, that he was crucified, that he
arose again, and ascended into heaven, that he preached these sermons,
that he gave such commandments, he was made to believe by sounds, by
shapes, by figures, by motions, by likenesses, and appearances, of all
the proper accidents.
A Socinian might turn this argument with equal force at least, but I
think with far greater, against the Incarnation. But it is a sophism,
that actually did lead, to Socinianism: for surely bread and wine are
less disparate from flesh and blood, than a human body from the
Omnipresent Spirit. The disciples would, according to Taylor, Tillotson,
and the other Latitudinarian common sense divines, have been justified
in answering: "All our senses tell us you are only a man: how should, we
believe you when you say the contrary? If we are not to believe all our
senses, much less can we believe that we actually hear you."
And Taylor in my humble judgment gives a force and extension to the
words of St. John, quoted before,--'That which was from the beginning,
which we have seen with our eyes, which we have beheld, and our hands
have handled of the word of life' (1 Ep.1.),--far greater than they
either can, or were meant to, bear. It is beyond all doubt, that the
words refer to, and were intended to confute, the heresy which was soon
after a prominent doctrine of the Gnostics; namely, that the body of
Christ was a phantom. To this St. John replies: I have myself had every
proof to the contrary: first, the proof of the senses; secondly,
Christ's own assurance. Now this was unanswerable by the Gnostics,
without one or the other of two pretences; either that St. John and the
other known and appointed Apostles and delegates of the Word were liars;
or that the Epistle was spurious. The first was too intolerable:
therefore they adopted the second. Observe, the heretics, whom St. John
confutes, did not deny the actual presence of the Word with the
appearance of a human body, much less the truth of the wonders performed
by the Word in this super-human and unearthly 'vice-corpus,' or 'quasi
corpus:' least of all, would they assert either that the assurances of
the Word were false in themselves, or that the sense of hearing might
have been permitted to deceive the beloved Apostle, (which would have
been virtual falsehood and a subornation of falsehood), however liable
to deception the senses might be generally, and as sole and primary
proofs unsupported by antecedent grounds, 'praecognitis vel
preconcessis.' And that St. John never thought of advancing the senses
to any such dignity and self-sufficiency as proofs, it would be easy to
shew from twenty passages of his Gospel. I say, again and again, that I
myself greatly prefer the general doctrine of our own Church respecting
the Eucharist,--'rem credimus, modum nescimus,'--to either Tran- (or
Con-) substantiation, on the one hand, or to the mere 'signum memoriae
causa' of the Sacramentaries. But nevertheless, I think that the
Protestant divines laid too much stress on the abjuration of the
metaphysical part of the Roman article; as if, even with the admission
of Transubstantiation, the adoration was not forbidden and made
idolatrous by the second commandment.
Ib. s. vi. p. 9.
And yet no sense can be deceived in that which it always perceives
alike: 'The touch can never he deceived.'
Every common juggler falsifies this assertion when he makes the pressure
from a shilling seem the shilling itself. "Are you sure you feel it?"
"Yes." "Then open your hand. Presto! 'Tis gone." From this I gather that
neither Taylor nor Aristotle ever had the nightmare.
The purpose of which discourse is this: that no notices are more
evident and more certain than the notices of sense; but if we conclude
contrary to the true dictate of senses, the fault is in the
understanding, collecting false conclusions from right premises. It
follows, therefore, that in the matter of the Eucharist we ought to
judge that which our senses tell us.
Very unusually lax reasoning for Jeremy Taylor, whose logic is commonly
legitimate even where his metaphysic is unsatisfactory. What Romanist
ever asserted that a communicant's palate deceived him, when it reported
the taste of bread or of wine in the elements?
Ib. s. i. p. 16.
When we discourse of mysteries of faith and articles of religion, it
is certain that the greatest reason in the world, to which all other
reasons must yield, is this--'God hath said it, therefore it is true.'
Doubtless: it is a syllogism demonstrative. All that God says is truth,
is necessarily true. But God hath said this; 'ergo,' &c. But how is the
'minor' to be proved, that God hath said this? By reason? But it is
against reason. By the senses? But it is against the senses.
Ib. s. xii. p. 27.
First; for Christ's body, his natural body, is changed into a
spiritual body, and it is not now a natural body, but a spiritual, and
therefore cannot be now in the Sacrament after a natural manner,
because it is so no where, and therefore not there: 'It is sown a
natural body, it is raised a spiritual body.'
But mercy on me! was this said of the resurgent body of Jesus? a
spiritual body, of which Jesus said it was not a spirit. If tangible by
Thomas's fingers, why not by his teeth, that is, manducable?
Ib. s. xxviii. p. 44.
So that if there were a plain revelation of Transubstantiation, then
this argument were good ... when there are so many seeming
impossibilities brought against the Holy Trinity ... And therefore we
have found difficulties, and shall for ever, till, in this article,
the Church returns to her ancient simplicity of expression.
Taylor should have said, it would have very greatly increased the
difficulty of proving that it was really revealed, but supposing that
certain, then doubtless it must be believed as far as nonsense can be
believed, that is, negatively. From the Apostles' Creed it may be
possible to deduce the Catholic doctrine of the Trinity; but assuredly
it is not fully expressed therein: and what can Taylor mean by the
Church returning to her first simplicity in this article? What less
could she say if she taught the doctrine at all, than that the Word and
the Spirit are spoken of every where in Scripture as individuals, each
distinct from the other, and both from the Father: that of both all the
divine attributes are predicated, except self-origination; that the
Spirit is God, and the Word is God, and that they with the Father are
the one God? And what more does she say now? But Taylor, like Swift, had
a strong tendency to Sabellianism.
It is most dangerous, and, in its distant consequences, subversive of
all Christianity to admit, as Taylor does, that the doctrine of the
Trinity is at all against, or even above, human reason in any other
sense, than as eternity and Deity itself are above it. In the former, as
well as the latter, we can prove that so it must be, and form clear
notions by negatives and oppositions.
Ib. s. xxix. p. 45.
Now concerning this, it is certain it implies a contradiction, that
two bodies should be in one place, or possess the place of another,
till that be cast forth.
So far from it that I believe the contrary; and it would puzzle Taylor
to explain a thousand 'phaenomena' in chemistry on his certainty.
But Taylor assumed matter to be wholly quantitative, which granted, his
opinion would become certain.
Ib. s. xxxii. p. 49.
The door might be made to yield to his Creator as easily as water,
which is fluid, be made firm under his feet; for consistence or
lability are not essential to wood and water.
Here the common basis of water, ice, vapour, steam, 'aqua crystallina',
and (possibly) water-gas is called water, and confounded with the
species water, that is, the common base 'plus' a given proportion of
caloric. To the species water continuity and lability are essential.
Ib. p. 50.
The words in the text are [Greek: kekleismen_on t_on thyr_on] in the
past tense, the gates or doors having been shut; but that they were
shut in the instant of Christ's entry, it says not: they might of
course, if Christ had so pleased, have been insensibly opened, and
shut in like manner again; and, if the words be observed, it will
appear that St. John mentioned the shutting the doors in relation to
the Apostles' fear, not to Christ's entering: he intended not (so far
as appears) to declare a miracle.
Thank God! Here comes common sense.
Ib. ss. xvi-xvii. pp. 71-73.
All most excellent; but O! that Taylor's stupendous wit, subtlety,
acuteness, learning and inexhaustible copiousness of argumentation would
but tell us what he himself, Dr. Jeremy Taylor, means by eating Christ's
body by faith: his body, not his soul or Godhead. Eat a body by faith!
A DISSUASIVE FROM POPERY.
Ib. s. ii. p. 137.
The sentence of the Fathers in the third general Council, that at
Ephesus;--'that it should not be lawful for any man to publish or
compose another faith or creed than that which was defined by the
Upon what ground then does the Church of England reconcile with this
decree its reception of the so called Athanasian creed?
Ib. s. iv. p. 145.
We consider that the doctrines upon which it (Purgatory) is pretended
reasonable, are all dubious, and disputable at the very best. Such are
... that the taking away the guilt of sins does not suppose the taking
away the obligation to punishment; that is, that when a man's sin is
pardoned, he may be punished without the guilt of that sin as justly
as with it.
The taking away the guilt does not, however, imply of necessity the
natural removal of the consequences of sin. And in this sense, I
suppose, the subtler Romanists would defend this accursed doctrine. A
man may have bitterly repented and thoroughly reformed the sin of
drunkenness, and by this genuine 'metanoia' and faith in Christ
crucified have obtained forgiveness of the guilt, and yet continue to
suffer a heavy punishment in a schirrous liver or incurable dyspepsy.
But who authorized the Popes to extend this to the soul?
Ib. p. 153.
St. Ambrose saith that 'death is a haven of rest.'
Consider the strange and oftentimes awful dreams accompanying the
presence of irritating matter in the lower abdomen, and the seeming
appropriation of particular sorts of dream images and incidents to
affections of particular organs and 'viscera.' Do the material causes
act positively, so that with the removal of the body by death the total
cause is removed, and of course the effects? Or only negatively and
indirectly, by lessening and suspending that continuous texture of
organic sensation, which, by drawing outward the attention of the soul,
sheaths her from her own state and its corresponding activities?--A
fearful question, which I too often agitate, and which agitates me even
in my dreams, when most commonly I am in one of Swedenborg's hells,
doubtful whether I am once more to be awaked, and thinking our dreams to
be the true state of the soul disembodied when not united with Christ.
On awaking from such dreams, I never fail to find some local pain,
'circa-' or 'infra-'umbilical, with kidney affections, and at the base
of the bladder.
But yet because I will humour J.S. for this once; even here also 'The
Dissuasive' relies upon a first and self-evident principle as any is
in Christianity, and that is, 'Quod primum verum.'
I am surprised to meet such an assertion in so acute a logician and so
prudent an advocate as Jeremy Taylor. If the 'quod primum verum' mean
the first preaching or first institution of Christianity by its divine
Founder, it is doubtless an evident inference from the assumed truth of
Christianity, or, if you please, evidently implied therein; but surely
the truth of the Christian system, composed of historical narrations,
doctrines, precepts, and arguments, is no self-evident position, still
less, if there be any tenable distinction between the words, a primary
truth. How then can an inference from a particular, a variously
proveable and proof-requiring, position be itself a universal and
But if 'quod primum verum' means 'quod prius verius,' this again is far
from being of universal application, much less self-evident. Astrology
was prior to astronomy; the Ptolemaic to the Newtonian scheme. It must
therefore be confined to history: yet even thus, it is not for any
practicable purpose necessarily or always true. Increase in other
knowledge, physical, anthropological, and psychological, may enable an
historian of A.D. 1800 to give a much truer account of certain events
and characters than the contemporary chroniclers had given, who lived in
an age of ignorance and superstition.
But confine the position within yet narrower bounds, namely, to
Christian antiquity. In addition to all other objections, it has this
great defect; that it takes for granted the very point in dispute,
whether Christianity was an 'opus simul et in toto perfectum,' or
whether the great foundations only were laid by Christ while on earth,
and by the Apostles, and the superstructure or progression of the work
entrusted to the successors of the Apostles; and whether for that
purpose Christ had not promised that his Spirit should be always with
Now this growth of truth, not only in each individual Christian who is
indeed a Christian, but likewise in the Church of Christ, from age to
age, has been affirmed and defended by sundry Latitudinarian, Grotian
and Sociman divines even among Protestants: the contrary, therefore, and
an inference from the supposition of the contrary, can never be
pronounced self-evident or primary.
Jeremy Taylor had nothing to do with these mock axioms, but to ridicule
them, as in other instances he has so effectually done. It was
sufficient and easy to shew, that, true or false, the position was
utterly inapplicable to the facts of the Roman Church; that, instead of
passing, like the science of the material heaven, from dim to clear,
from guess to demonstration, from mischievous fancies to guiding,
profitable and powerful truths, it had overbuilt the divinest truths by
the silliest and not seldom wicked forgeries, usurpations and
superstitions. J.S.'s very notion of proving a mass of histories by
simple logic, he would have found exposed to his hand with exquisite
truth and humour by Lucian.
In the preceding note I think I took Taylor's words in too literal a
sense; the remarks, however, on the common maxim, 'In rebus fidei, quod
prius verius,' seem to me just and valuable. 2. March, 1824.
Ib. p. 297.
When he talks of being infallible, if the notion be applied to his
Church, then he means an infallibility antecedent, absolute,
unconditionate, such as will not permit the Church ever to err.
Taylor himself was infected with the spirit of casuistry, by which
saving faith is placed in the understanding, and the moral act in the
outward deed. How infinitely safer the true Lutheran doctrine: God
cannot be mocked; neither will truth, as a mere conviction of the
understanding, save, nor error condemn;--to love truth sincerely is
spiritually to have truth; and an error becomes a personal error, not by
its aberration from logic or history, but so far as the causes of such
error are in the heart, or may be traced back to some antecedent
un-Christian wish or habit;--to watch over the secret movements of the
heart, remembering ever how deceitful a thing it is, and that God cannot
be mocked, though we may easily dupe ourselves: these, as the
ground-work with prayer, study of the Scriptures, and tenderness to all
around us, as the consequents, are the Christian's rule, and supersede
all books of casuistry, which latter serve only to harden our feelings
and pollute the imagination. To judge from the Roman casuists, nay, I
ought to say, from Taylor's own 'Ductor Dubitantium,' one would suppose
that a man's points of belief and smallest determinations of outward
conduct,--however pure and charitable his intentions, and however holy
or blameless the inward source of those intentions or convictions in his
past and present state of moral being,--were like the performance of an
electrical experiment, and would blow a man's salvation into atoms from
a mere unconscious mistake in the arrangement and management of the
See Livy's account of Tullus Hostilius's unfortunate experiment with one
of Numa's sacrificial ceremonies. The trick not being performed
'secundum artem,' Jupiter enraged shot him dead.[A] Before God our
deeds, which for him can have no value, gain acceptance in proportion as
they are evolutions of our spiritual life. He beholds our deeds in our
principles. For men our deeds have value as efficient causes, worth as
symptoms. They infer our principles from our deeds. Now, as religion or
the love of God cannot subsist apart from charity or the love of our
neighbour, our conduct must be conformable to both.
Ib. p. 305.
Only for their comfort this they might have also observed in that
book,--that there is not half so much excuse for the Papists as there
is for the Anabaptists; and yet it was but an excuse at the best, as
appears in those full answers I have given to all their arguments, in
the last edition of that book, among the polemical discourses in
Nay, dear Bishop! but such an excuse, as compared with your after
attempt to evacuate it, resembles a coat of mail of your own forging,
which you boil, in order to melt it away into invisibility. You only
hide it by foam and bubbles, by wavelets and steam-clouds, of ebullient
rhetoric: I speak of the Anabaptists as Anti-paedobaptists.
Ib. s. i. p. 337.
'Henceforth I call you not servants, for the servant knoweth not what
his Lord doth; but I have called you friends, for all things I have
heard from the Father I have made known to you.'
I never thought of this text before, but it seems to me a stronger
passage in favour of Psilanthropism, or modern Socinianism,--a doctrine
which of all heresies I deem the most fundamental and the worst (the
impurities of madmen out of the question),--than I have ever seen, and
far stronger than that concerning the day of judgment, which in its
apparent sense is clearly high Arianism, or teaching the
super-angelical, yet infra-divine, nature of Christ. We must interpret
it [Greek: kat' analogian piste_os], not as 'all things' absolutely, but
as 'all things' concerning your interests, 'all things' that it behoves
you to know. Else it would contradict Christ's words, 'None knoweth the
Father but the Son,' that is, truly and totally. For Christ does not
promise in this life to give us the same degree of knowledge as he
himself possessed, but only a 'quantum sufficit' of the kind. This is
clear by St. John's 'all things,' which assuredly did not include either
the discoveries of Newton or of Davy.
14 August, 1811.
Ib. s. iii. p. 348.
The Churches have troubled themselves with infinite variety of
questions, and divided their precious unity, and destroyed charity,
and instead of contending against the devil and all his crafty
methods, they have contended against one another, and excommunicated
one another, and anathematized and damned one another; and no man is
the better after all, but most men are very much the worse; and the
Churches are in the world still divided about questions that commenced
twelve or thirteen ages since, and they are like to be so for ever,
till Elias come, &c.
I remember no passages of the Fathers nearer to inspired Scripture than
this and similar ones of Jeremy Taylor, in which, quitting the acute
logician, he combines his heart with his head, and utters general, and
inclusive, and reconciling truths of charity and of common sense. All
amounts but to this:--what is binding on all must be possible to all.
But conformity of intellectual conclusions is not possible. Faith
therefore cannot reside totally in the understanding. But to do what we
believe we ought to do is possible to all, therefore binding on all;
therefore the 'unum necessarium' of Christian faith. Talk not of bad
conscience; it is like bad sense, that is, no sense; and we all know
that we may wilfully lie till we involuntarily believe the lie as truth;
but 'causa causae est causa vera causati.'
Ib. p. 347.
But if you mean the Catholic Church, then, if you mean her, an
abstracted separate being from all particulars, you pursue a cloud,
and fall in love with an idea and a child of fancy.
Here Taylor uses 'idea' as opposed to image or distinct phantasm; and
this is with few exceptions his general sense, and even the exceptions
are only metaphors from the general sense, that is, images so faint,
indefinite and fluctuating as to be almost no images, that is, ideas; as
we say of a very thin body, it is a ghost or spirit, the lowest degree
of one kind being expressed by the opposite kind.
Ib. p. 380.
'Miracles' were, in the beginning of Christianity, a note of true
believers: Christ told us so. And he also taught us that Anti-Christ
should be revealed in lying signs and wonders, and commanded us, by
that token, to take heed of them.
An excellent distinction between a note or mark by which a thing already
proved may be known, and the proofs of the thing. Thus the poisonous
qualities of the nightshade are established by the proper proofs, and
the marks by which a plant may be known to be the nightshade, are the
number, position, colour, and so on, of its filaments, petals, and the
The 'spirit of prophecy' is also a pretty sure note of the true
Church, and yet...I deny not but there have been some prophets in the
Church of Rome: Johannes de Rupe Scissa, Anselmus, Marsicanus, Robert
Grosthead, Bishop of Lincoln, St. Hildegardis, Abbot Joachim, whose
prophecies and pictures prophetical were published by Theophrastus
Paracelsus, and John Adrasder, and by Paschalinus Regiselmus, at
Venice, 1589; but (as Ahab said concerning Micaiah) these do not
prophesy good concerning Rome, but evil, &c.
This paragraph is an exquisite specimen of grave and dignified irony,
'telum quod cedere simulat retorquentis'. In contrast with this stands
the paragraph on note 15, (p. 381.) which is a coarse though not
unmerited sneer, or, as a German would have expressed himself, 'an
Ib. p. 381.
... excepting only some Popes have been remarked by their own
histories for funest and direful deaths.
In the adoption of this word 'funest' into the English language by
'apocope' of the final 'us', Taylor is supported by 'honest' and
'modest;' but then the necessity of pronouncing funest should have
excluded it, the superlative final being an objection to all of them,
though outweighed in the others. A common reader would pronounce it
'funest,' and perhaps mistake it for 'funniest.'
Ib. p. 382.
... sacraments, 'which to be seven', is with them an article of faith.
The fastidious exclusion of this and similar idioms in modern writing
occasions unnecessary embarrassment for the writer, both in narration
and argumenting, and contributes to the monotony of our style.
The Fathers and Schoolmen differ greatly in the definition of a
Had it been in other respects advisable, it would, I think, have been
theologically convenient, if our Reformers had contra-distinguished
Baptism and the Lord's Supper by the term Mysteries, and allowed the
name of Sacrament to Ordination, Confirmation, and Marriage.
Ib. s. iii. p. 388.
And he did so to the Jews ... tradition was not relied upon; it was
not trusted with any law of faith or manners.
This all the later Jews deny, affirming an oral communication from Moses
to the Seventy, on as lame pretences as the Roman Catholics, and for the
same vile purposes as reproved by Christ, who, if he had believed the
story, would not have condemned traditions of men generally without
exception, and would not have proved the immortality of the Patriarchs
by a text which seems to have had no such primary intention, though it
may contain the deduction 'potentialiter'.
But Taylor's 1st and 7th arguments following are, the former weak and
incorrect, the latter 'dictum et vulgatum, sed non probatum, ne dicam
improbatum'. Who doubts that all that is indispensable to the salvation
of each and every one is contained in the New Testament?
But is it not contained in the first chapter of St. John's Gospel? Is it
not contained in the eleventh of the Acts, and in a score other
separable portions? Necessary, indispensable, and the like, are
multivocal terms. Dogs have survived (and without any noticeable injury)
the excision of the spleen.
Dare we conclude from this fact that the spleen is not necessary to the
continuance of the canine race? What is not indispensable for even the
majority of individual believers may be necessary for the Church.
Instead, therefore, of these terms, put 'true,' 'important,' and
'constitutive,' that is, appertaining to the chain ('ad catenam auream')
of truths interdependent and rendered mutually intelligible, which
constitute the system of the Christian religion, including not alone the
faith and morals of individuals, but the 'organismus' likewise of the
Church, as a body spiritual, yet outward and historical; and this again
not as an aggregate or sum total, like a corn-sheaf, but a unity.
Let the question, I say, be thus restated, and then let the cause come
to trial between the Romish and the Protestant divines.
N. B. As a running comment on all these marginal notes, let it be
understood that I hold the far greater part--the only not all of what
our great Author urges, to apply with irrefutable force against the
doctrine and practice of the Romish Church, as it in fact exists, and no
less against the Familists and 'istius farinae enthusiastas'.
I contend only, that he himself, in several assertions, lies open to
attack from the supporters of a scheme of faith, as unlike either the
Romish or the Fanatical, as Taylor's own, and which scheme, namely, the
co-ordinate authority of the Word, the Spirit and the Church, I believe
to be the true Apostolic and Catholic doctrine, and that to this scheme
his objections do not apply.
When I can bring myself to believe that from the mere perusal of the New
Testament a man might have sketched out by anticipation the
constitution, discipline, creeds, and sacramental ritual of the
Episcopal Reformed Church of England; or that it is not a true and
orthodox Church, because this is incredible; then I may perhaps be
inclined to echo Chillingworth.
As I cannot think that it detracts from a dial that in order to tell the
time the sun must shine upon it; so neither does it detract from the
Scriptures, that though the best and holiest they are yet Scripture, and
require a pure heart and the consequent assistances of God's
enlightening grace in order to understand them to edification.
I still agree with the preceding note, and add that Jeremy Taylor should
have cited the Arians and Socinians on the other side. But the Romish
Papal hierarchy cannot for shame say, or only from want of shame can
pretend to say, what a Catholic would be entitled to urge on the triple
link of the Scripture, the Spirit, and the Church.
27 April, 1826.
Ib. s. vi. p. 392.
From this principle, as it is promoted by the Fanatics, they derive a
wandering, unsettled, and a dissolute religion, &c.
The evils of the Fanatic persuasion here so powerfully, so exquisitely,
stated and enforced by our all-eloquent Bishop, supply no proof or even
presumption against the tenet of the Spirit rightly expressed. For
catholicity is the distinctive mark, the 'conditio sine qua non', of a
spiritual teaching; and if men that dream with their eyes open mistake
for this the very contrary, that is, their own particular fancies, or
perhaps sensations, who can help it?
Ib. s. vii. p. 394.
They affirm that the Scriptures are full, that they are a perfect
rule, that they contain all things necessary to salvation; and from
hence they confuted all heresies.
Yes, the heretics were so confuted, I grant; because these would not
acknowledge any other authority but that of the Scriptures, and these
too forged or corrupted by themselves; but by the Scriptures that
remained unaltered the early Fathers of the Church both demonstrated the
omissions and interpolations of the heretical canons and the false
doctrines of the heresy itself. But so far from following the same rule
to the members of the true Church, they made the applicability of this
way of proof the criterion of a heretic.
Ib. p. 394.
'Which truly they then preached, but afterwards by the will of God
delivered to us in the Scriptures, which was to be the pillar and
ground to our faith.'
Lessing has shown this to be a false and even ungrammatical rendering of
Irenaeus's words. The 'columen et fundamentum fidei', are the Creed, or
economy of salvation.
Ib. vii. p. 395. Extracts from Clement's 'Stromata'.
It would require a volume to shew the qualifications with which these
'excerpta' must be read. There is no one source of error and endless
controversy more fruitful than this custom of quoting detached
sentences. I would pledge myself in the course of a single morning to
bring an equal number of passages from the same (Ante-Nicene) Fathers in
proof of the Roman Catholic theory. One palpable cheat in these
transcripts is the neglect of appreciating the words, 'inspired,' 'a
'Spiritu dicta'', and the like, in the Patristic use; as if the Fathers
did not frequently apply the same terms to the discourses of the
Bishops, their contemporaries, and to writings not canonical. It is
wonderful how so acute and learned a man as Taylor could have read
Tertullian, Irenaeus and Clemens Alexandrinus, and not have seen that the
passages are all against him so far as they all make the Scriptures
subsidiary only to the Spirit in the Church and the Baptismal creed, the
[Greek: kan_on piste_os], 'regula fidei', or 'aeconomia salutis'.
Ib. p. 396.
... that the tradition ecclesiastical, that is, the whole doctrine
taught by the Church of God, and preached to all men, is in the
It is only by the whole context and purpose of the work, and this too
interpreted by the known doctrine of the age, that the intent of the
sentences here quoted can be determined, relatively to the point in
question. But even as they stand here, they do not assert that the
'Traditio Ecclesiastica' was grounded on, or had been deduced from, the
Scriptures; nor that by Scripture Clemens meant principally the New
Testament; and that the Scriptures contain the Tradition Ecclesiastical
or Catholic Faith the Romish divines admit and contend.
Ib. p. 399. Extract from Origen.
As our Saviour imposed silence upon the Sadducees by the word of his
doctrine, and faithfully convinced that false opinion which they
thought to be truth; so also shall the followers of Christ do, by the
examples of Scripture, by which according to sound doctrine every
voice of Pharaoh ought to be silent.
Does not this prove too much; namely, that nothing exists in the New
which does not likewise exist in the Old Testament?
One objection to Jeremy Taylor's argument here must, I think, strike
every reflecting mind; namely, that in order to a fair and full view of
the sentiments of the Fathers of the first four centuries, all they
declare of the Church, and her powers and prerogatives, ought to have
been likewise given.
As soon as I receive any writing as inspired by the Spirit of Truth, of
course I must believe it on its own authority. But how am I assured that
it is an inspired work? Now do not these Fathers reply, By the Church?
To the Church it belongs to declare what books are Holy Scriptures, and
to interpret their right sense. Is not this the common doctrine among
the Fathers? And how was the Church to judge?
First, by the same spirit surviving in her; and secondly by the
accordance of the Book itself with the canon of faith, that is the
Baptismal Creed. And what was this? 'Traditio Ecclesiastica'. As to
myself, I agree with Taylor against the Romanists, that the Bible is for
us the only rule of faith; but I do not adopt his mode of proving it.
In the earliest period of Christianity the Scriptures of the New
Testament and the Ecclesiastical Tradition were reciprocally tests of
each other; but for the Christians of the second century the Scriptures
were tried by the Ecclesiastical Tradition, while for us the order is
reversed, and we must try the Ecclesiastical Tradition by the
Scriptures. Therefore I do not expect to find the proofs of the
supremacy of Scripture in the early Fathers, nor do we need their
authority. Our proofs are stronger without it.
Ib. p. 403.
Which words I the rather remark, because this article of the
consubstantiality of Christ with the Father is brought as an instance
(by the Romanists) of the necessity of tradition, to make up the
insufficiency of Scripture.
How shall I make this rhyme to Taylor's own assertion, in the last
paragraph of sect. xix. of his Episcopacy Asserted,  in which he
clearly refers to this very question as relying on tradition for its
clearness? Jeremy Taylor was a true Father of the Church, and would
furnish as fine a subject for a 'concordantia discordantiarum' as St.
Austin himself. For the exoteric and esoteric he was a very Pythagoras.
Ib. p. 406.
... for one or two of them say, Theophilus spake against Origen, for
broaching fopperies of his own, and particularly, that Christ's flesh
was consubstantial with the Godhead.
Origen doubtless meant the 'caro noumenon', and was quite right. But
never was a great man so misunderstood as Origen.
Ib. p. 408. n.
'Sed et alia, quoe absque auctoritate et testimoniis Scripturarum,
quasi traditione Apostolica, sponte reperiunt atque contingunt,
percutit gladius Dei'.
"Those things which they make and find, as it were, by Apostolical
tradition, without the authority and testimonies of Scripture, the
word of God smites."
Is it clear that 'Scripturarum' depends on 'auctoritate'? It may well
mean they who without the authority of the Church, or Scriptural
testimony pretend to an Apostolical Tradition.
Ib. p. 411.
But lastly, if in the plain words of Scripture be contained all that
is simply necessary to all, then it is clear, by Bellarmine's
confession, that St. Austin affirmed that the plain places of
Scripture are sufficient to all laics and all idiots, or private
persons, and then it is very ill done to keep them from the knowledge
and use of the Scriptures, which contain all their duty both of faith
and good life; so it is very unnecessary to trouble them with any
thing else, there being in the world no such treasure and repository
of faith and manners, and that so plain, that it was intended for all
men, and for all such men is sufficient. "Read the Holy Scriptures
wherein you shall find some things to be holden, and some to be
And yet in the preface to his Apology for authorized and set forms of
Liturgy,  Taylor regrets that the Church of England was not able to
confine the laity to such selections of Holy Writ as are in her Liturgy.
But Laud was then alive: and Taylor partook of his 'trepidatiunculae'
towards the Church of Rome.
Ib. p. 412.
And all these are nothing else, but a full subscription to, and an
excellent commentary upon, those words of St. Paul, 'Let no man
pretend to be wise above what is written.'
Had St. Paul anything beyond the Law and the Prophets in his mind?
Ib. p. 416.
St. Paul's way of teaching us to expound Scripture is, that he that
prophesies should do it [Greek: kat' analogian piste_os], according to
the analogy of faith.
Yet in his Liberty of Prophesying  Taylor turns this way into mere
ridicule. I love thee, Jeremy! but an arrant theological barrister that
thou wast, though thy only fees were thy desires of doing good in
Ib. s. iii. p. 419.
Only, because we are sure there was some false dealing in this matter,
and we know there might be much more than we have discovered, we have
no reason to rely upon any tradition for any part of our faith, any
more than we could do upon Scripture, if one book or chapter of it
should be detected to be imposture.
What says Jeremy Taylor then to the story of the woman taken in
adultery, ('John, c. viii. 3-11'.) which Chrysostom disdains to comment
on? If true, how could it be omitted in so many, and these the most
authentic, copies? And if this for fear of scandal, why not others? And
who does not know that falsehood may be effected as well by omissions as
by interpolations? But if false,--then--but Taylor draws the consequence
Ib. p. 427.
So that the tradition concerning the Scriptures being extrinsical to
Scripture is also extrinsical to the question: this tradition cannot
be an objection against the sufficiency of Scripture to salvation, but
must go before this question. For no man inquires whether the
Scriptures contain all things necessary to salvation, unless he
believe that there are Scriptures, that these are they, and that they
are the word of God. All this comes to us by tradition, that is, by
universal undeniable testimony.
Very just, and yet this idle argument is the favourite, both shield and
sword, of the Romanists: as if I should pretend to learn the Roman
history from tradition, because by tradition I know such histories to
have been written by Livy, Sallust, and Tacitus!
Ib. p. 435.
The more natural consequence is that their proposition is either
mistaken or uncertain, or not an article of faith (which is rather to
be hoped, lest we condemn all the Greek Churches as infidels or
perverse heretics), or else that it can be derived from Scripture,
which last is indeed the most probable, and pursuant to the doctrine
of those wiser Latins who examined things by reason and not by
It is remarkable that both Stillingfleet and Taylor favoured the Greek
opinion. But Bull's 'Defensio Fidei Nicaenae' was not yet published. It is
to me evident that if the Holy Ghost does not proceed through and from
the Son as well as from the Father, then the Son is not the adequate
substantial idea of the Father. But according to St. Paul, he is--'ergo,
&c'. N.B. These "'ergos, &c'." in legitimate syllogisms, where the
'major' and 'minor' have been conceded, are binding on all human beings,
with the single anomaly of the Quakers. For with them nothing is more
common than to admit both 'major' and 'minor', and, when you add the
inevitable consequence, to say "Nay! I do not think so, Friend! Thou art
worldly wise, Friend!" For example: 'major', it is agreed on both sides
that we ought not to withhold from a man what he has a just right to:
'minor', property in land being the creature of law, a just right in
respect of landed property is determined by the law of the
land:--"agreed, such is the fact:" 'ergo:' the clergyman has a just
right to the tithe. "Nay, nay; this is vanity, and tithes an abomination
Ib. s. v. p. 492.
And since that villain of a man, Pope Hildebrand, as Cardinal Beno
relates in his Life, could, by shaking of his sleeve make sparks of
fire fly from it.
If this was fact, was it an idiosyncrasy, as I have known those who by
combing their hair can elicit sparks with a crackling as from a cat's
back rubbed. It is very possible that the sleeve might be silk,
tightened either on a very hairy arm, or else on woollen, and by shaking
it might be meant stripping the silk suddenly off, which would doubtless
produce flashes and sparks.
Vol. XI. s. x. p. 1.
As a general remark suggested indeed by this section, but applicable to
very many parts of Taylor's controversial writings, both against the
anti-Prelatic and the Romish divines, especially to those in which our
incomparable Church-aspist attempts, not always successfully, to
demonstrate the difference between the dogmas and discipline of the
ancient Church, and those which the Romish doctors vindicate by them,--I
would say once for all, that it was the fashion of the Arminian court
divines of Taylor's age, that is, of the High Church party, headed by
Archbishop Laud, to extol, and (in my humble judgment) egregiously to
overrate, the example and authority of the first four, nay, of the first
six centuries; and at all events to take for granted the Evangelical and
Apostolical character of the Church to the death of Athanasius.
Now so far am I from conceding this, that before the first Council of
Nicaea, I believe myself to find the seeds and seedlings of all the
worst corruptions of the Latin Church of the thirteenth century, and not
a few of these even before the close of the second.
One pernicious error of the primitive Church was the conversion of the
ethical ideas, indispensable to the science of morals and religion, into
fixed practical laws and rules for all Christians, in all stages of
spiritual growth, and under all circumstances; and with this the
degradation of free and individual acts into corporate Church
Another not less pernicious was the gradual concentration of the Church
into a priesthood, and the consequent rendering of the reciprocal
functions of love and redemption and counsel between Christian and
Christian exclusively official, and between disparates, namely, the
priest and the layman.
Ib. B. II. s. ii. p. 58.
Often have I welcomed, and often have I wrestled with, the thought of
writing an essay on the day of judgment. Are the passages in St. Peter's
Epistle respecting the circumstances of the last day and the final
conflagration, and even St. Paul's, to be regarded as apocalyptic and a
part of the revelation by Christ, or are they, like the dogma of a
personal Satan, accommodations of the current popular creed which they
continued to believe?
Ib. s. iii. p. 105.
And therefore St. Paul left an excellent precept to the Church to
avoid 'profanas vocum novitates', 'the prophane newness of words;'
that is, it is fit that the mysteries revealed in Scripture should be
preached and taught in the words of the Scripture, and with that
simplicity, openness, easiness, and candor, and not with new and
unhallowed words, such as that of Transubstantiation.
Are not then Trinity, Tri-unity, 'hypostasis, perichoresis, diphysis',
and others, excluded? Yet Waterland very ingeniously, nay more, very
honestly and sensibly, shews the necessity of these terms 'per
accidens'. The 'profanum' fell back on the heretics who had occasioned
Ib. p. 106.
"The oblation of a cake was a figure of the Eucharistical bread which
the Lord commanded to do in remembrance of his passion." These are
Justin's words in that place.
Justin Martyr could have meant no more, and the Greek construction means
no more, than that the cake we offer is the representative, substitute,
and 'fac-simile' of the bread which Christ broke and delivered.
I find no necessary absurdity in Transubstantiation. For substance is
but a notion 'thought on' to the aggregate of accidents--'hinzugedacht'
--conceived, not perceived, and conceived always in universals, never in
Therefore, X. Y. Z. being unknown quantities, Y. may be as well annexed
by the choice of the mind as the imagined 'substratum' as X. For we
cannot distinguish substance from substance any more than X. from X.
The substrate or 'causa invisibilis' may be the 'noumenon' or actuality,
'das Ding in sich', of Christ's humanity, as well as the 'Ding in sich'
of which the sensation, bread, is the appearance.
But then, on the other hand, there is not a word of sense possible to
prove that it is really so; and from the not impossible to the real is a
strange 'ultra'-Rhodian leap.
And it is opposite both to the simplicity of Evangelical meaning, and
anomalous from the interpretation of all analogous phrases which all men
expound as figures,--'I am the gate, I am the way, I am the vine', and
the like,--and to Christ's own declarations that his words were to be
understood spiritually, that is, figuratively.
Ib. s. vi. p. 164.
However, if you will not commit downright idolatry, as some of their
saints teach you, then you must be careful to observe these plain
distinctions; and first be sure to remember that when you worship an
image, you do it not materially but formally; not as it is of such a
substance, but as it is a sign; next take care that you observe what
sort of image it is, and then proportion your right kind to it, that
you do not give 'latria' to that where 'hyperdulia' is only due; and
be careful that if 'dulia' only be due, that your worship be not
A masterly specimen of grave dignified irony. Indeed, Jeremy Taylor's
'Works' would be of more service to an English barrister than those of
Demosthenes, AEschines, and Cicero taken together.
Ib. s. vii. p. 168.
A man cannot well understand an essence, and hath no idea of it in his
mind, much less can a painter's pencil do it.
Noticeable, that this is the only instance I have met in any English
classic before the Revolution of the word 'idea' used as synonymous
with a mental image. Taylor himself has repeatedly placed the two in
opposition; and even here I doubt whether he has done otherwise. I
rather think he meant by the word 'idea' a notion under an indefinite
and confused form, such as Kant calls a 'schema'or vague outline, an
imperfect embryo of a concrete, to the individuation of which the mind
gives no conscious attention; just as when I say--"any thing," I may
imagine a poker or a plate; but I pay no attention to its being this
rather than that; and the very image itself is so wandering and unstable
that at this moment it may be a dim shadow of the one, and in the next
of some other thing. In this sense, idea is opposed to image in degree
instead of kind; yet still contra-distinguished, as is evident by the
sequel, "much less can a painter's pencil do it:" for were it an image,
'individui et concreti', then the painter's pencil could do it as well
as his fancy or better.
A DISCOURSE OF CONFIRMATION.
Of all Taylor's works, the Discourse of Confirmation seems to me the
least judicious; and yet that is not the right word either. I mean,
however, that one is puzzled to know for what class of readers or
auditors it was intended.
He announces his subject as one of such lofty claims; he begins with
positions taken on such high ground, no less than the superior dignity
and spiritual importance of Confirmation above Baptism itself--whether
considered as a sacramental rite and mystery distinct from Baptism, or
as its completory and crowning part (the 'finis coronans opus')--that we
are eager to hear the proof.
But proofs differ in their value according to our previous valuation of
authorities. What would pass for a very sufficient proof, because
grounded on a reverend authority, with a Romanist, would be a mere
fancy-medal and of no currency with a Bible Protestant.
And yet for Protestants, and those too laymen (for we can hardly suppose
that Taylor thought his Episcopal brethren in need of it), must this
Discourse have been intended; and in this point of view, surely never
did so wise a man adopt means so unsuitable to his end, or frame a
discourse so inappropriate to his audience.
The authorities of the Fathers are, indeed, as strong and decisive in
favour of the Bishop's position as the warmest advocate of Confirmation
could wish; but this very circumstance was calculated to create a
prejudice against the doctrine in the mind of a zealous Protestant, from
the contrast in which the unequivocal and explicit declarations of the
Fathers stand with the remote, arbitrary, and fine-drawn inferences from
the few passages of the New Testament which can be forced into an
implied sanction of a rite no where mentioned, and as a distinct and
separate ministration, utterly, as I conceive, unknown in the Apostolic
How much more rational and convincing (as to me it seems) would it have
been to have shewn, that when from various causes the practice of Infant
Baptism became general in the Church, Confirmation or the acknowledgment
'in propria persona' of the obligations that had been incurred by proxy
was introduced; and needed no other justification than its own evident
necessity, as substantiating the preceding form as to the intended
effects of Baptism on the believer himself, and then to have shewn the
great uses and spiritual benefits of the institution.
But this would not do. Such was the spirit of the age that nothing less
than the assertion of a divine origin,--of a formal and positive
institution by Christ himself, or by the Apostles in their Apostolic
capacity as legislators for the universal Church in all ages, could
serve; and accordingly Bishops, liturgies, tithes, monarchy, and what
not, were, 'de jure divino', with celestial patents, wrapped up in the
womb of this or that text of Scripture to be exforcipated by the
logico-obstetric skill of High Church doctors and ultra-loyal court
THE EPISTLE DEDICATORY TO THE DUKE OF ORMONDE.
Ib. p. ccxvii.
This very poor church.
With the exception of Spain, the Church establishment in Ireland is now,
I conceive, the richest in Europe; though by the most iniquitous measure
of the Irish Parliament, most iniquitously permitted to acquire the
force of law at the Union, the Irish Church was robbed of the tithes
from all pasture lands. What occasioned so great a change in its favour
since the time of Charles II?
Ib. p. ccxviii.
And amidst these and very many more inconveniences it was greatly
necessary that God should send us such a king.
Such a king! O sorrow and shame! Why, why, O Genius! didst thou suffer
thy darling son to crush the fairest flower of thy garland beneath a
mitre of Charles's putting on!
Ib. p. ccxix.
For besides that the great usefulness of this ministry will greatly
endear the Episcopal order, to which (that I may use St. Hierom's
words) "if there be not attributed a more than common power and
authority, there will be as many schisms as priests," &c.
On this ground the Romish divines justify the Papacy. The fact of the
Scottish Church is the sufficient answer to both. Episcopacy needs not
rash assertions for its support.
Ib. p. ccxx.
For it is a sure rule in our religion, and is of an eternal truth,
that "they who keep not the unity of the Church, have not the Spirit
Contrast with this our xixth and xxth Articles on the Church. The Irish
Roman Catholic Bishops, methinks, must have read this with delight. What
an over hasty simpleton that James II. was! Had he waited and caressed
the Bishops, they would have taken the work off his hands.
Ib. p. 229. Introduction.
It has been my conviction that in respect of the theory of the Faith,
(though God be praised! not in the practical result,) the Papal and the
Protestant communions are equi-distant from the true idea of the Gospel
Institute, though erring from opposite directions.
The Romanists sacrifice the Scripture to the Church virtually annulling
the former: the Protestants reversed this practically, and even in
theory, (see the above-mentioned Articles,) annulling the latter.
The consequence has been, as might have been predicted, the extinction
of the Spirit (the indifference or 'mesothesis') in both considered as
bodies: for I doubt not that numerous individuals in both Churches live
in communion with the Spirit.
Towards the close of the reign of our first James, and during the period
from the accession of Charles I to the restoration of his profligate
son, there arose a party of divines, Arminians (and many of them
Latitudinarians) in their creed, but devotees of the throne and the
altar, soaring High Churchmen and ultra royalists.
Much as I dislike their scheme of doctrine and detest their principles
of government both in Church and State, I cannot but allow that they
formed a galaxy of learning and talent, and that among them the Church
of England finds her stars of the first magnitude.
Instead of regarding the Reformation established under Edward VI as
imperfect, they accused the Reformers, some of them openly, but all in
their private opinions, of having gone too far; and while they were
willing to keep down (and if they could not reduce him to a primacy of
honor to keep out) the Pope, and to prune away the innovations in
doctrine brought in under the Papal domination, they were zealous to
restore the hierarchy, and to substitute the authority of the Fathers,
Canonists and Councils of the first six or seven centuries, and the
least Papistic of the later Doctors and Schoolmen, for the names of
Luther, Melancthon, Bucer, Calvin and the systematic theologians who
rejected all testimony but that of their Bible.
As far as the principle, on which Archbishop Laud and his followers
acted, went to re-actuate the idea of the Church, as a co-ordinate and
living Power by right of Christ's institution and express promise, I go
along with them; but I soon discover that by the Church they meant the
Clergy, the hierarchy exclusively, and then I fly off from them in a
For it is this very interpretation of the Church that, according to my
conviction, constituted the first and fundamental apostasy; and I hold
it for one of the greatest mistakes of our polemic divines in their
controversies with the Romanists, that they trace all the corruptions of
the Gospel faith to the Papacy.
Meantime can we be surprised that our forefathers under the Stuarts were
alarmed, and imagined that the Bishops and court preachers were marching
in quick time with their faces towards Rome, when, to take one instance
of a thousand, a great and famous divine, like Bishop Taylor, asserts
the inferiority, in rank and efficacy, of Baptism to Confirmation, and
grounds this assertion so strange to all Scriptural Protestants on a
text of Cabasilas--a saying of Rupertus--a phrase of St. Denis--and a
sentence of Saint Bernard in a Life of Saint Malachias!--for no
Benedictine can be more liberal in his attribution of saintship than
Jeremy Taylor, or more reverently observant of the beatifications and
canonizations of the Old Lady of the scarlet petticoat.
P. S. If the reader need other illustrations, I refer him to Bishop
Hackett's 'Sermons on the Advent and Nativity', which might almost pass
for the orations of a Franciscan brother, whose reading had been
confined to the 'Aurea Legenda'. It would be uncandid not to add that
this indiscreet traffickery with Romish wares was in part owing to the
immense reading of these divines.
Ib. s. i. p. 247. Acts viii. 14-17.
This is an argument indeed, and one that of itself would suffice to
decide the question, if only it could be proved, or even made probable,
that by the Holy Ghost in this place was meant that receiving of the
Spirit to which Confirmation is by our Church declared to be the means
But this I suspect cannot be done. The whole passage to which sundry
chapters in St. Paul's Epistles seem to supply the comment, inclines and
almost compels me to understand by the Holy Ghost in this narrative the
miraculous gifts, [Greek: tas dynameis], collectively.
And in no other sense can I understand the sentence 'the Holy Ghost was
not yet fallen upon any of them'. But the subject is beset with
difficulties from the paucity of particular instances recorded by the
inspired historian, and from the multitude and character of these
instances found in the Fathers and Ecclesiastical historians.
Ib. s. ii. p. 254.
Still they are all [Greek: dynameis], exhibitable powers, faculties.
Were it otherwise what strange and fearful consequences would follow
from the assertion, 'the Holy Spirit was not yet fallen upon any of
That we misunderstand the gift of tongues, and that it did not mean the
power of speaking foreign languages unlearnt, I am strongly persuaded.
Yea, but this is not the question. If my heart, bears me witness that I
love my brother, that I love my merciful Saviour, and call Jesus Lord
and the Anointed of God with joy of heart, I am encouraged by Scripture
to infer that the Spirit abideth in me; besides that I know that of
myself, and estranged from the Holy Spirit, I cannot even think a
thought acceptable before God.
But how will this help me to believe that I received this Spirit through
the Bishop's hands laid on my head at Confirmation: when perhaps I am
distinctly conscious, that I loved my Saviour, freely forgave, nay,
tenderly yearned for the weal of, them that hated me before my
Confirmation,--when, indeed, I must have been the most uncharitable of
men if I did not admit instances of the most exemplary faith, charity,
and devotion in Christians who do not practise the imposition of hands
in their Churches. What! did those Christians, of whom St. Luke speaks,
not love their brethren?
I have had too frequent experience of professional divines, and how they
identify themselves with the theological scheme to which they have been
articled, and I understand too well the nature and the power, the effect
and the consequences, of a wilful faith,--where the sensation of
positiveness is substituted for the sense of certainty, and the stubborn
clutch for quiet insight,--to wonder at any degree of hardihood in
matters of belief.
Therefore the instant and deep-toned affirmative to
"And do you actually believe the presence of the material water in the
baptizing of infants or adults is essential to their salvation, so
indispensably so that the omission of the water in the Baptism of an
infant who should die the day after would exclude that infant from the
kingdom of heaven, and whatever else is implied in the loss of
I should not be surprised, I say, to hear this question answered with an
"Yes, Sir! I do actually believe this, for thus I find it written, and
herein begins my right to the name of a Christian, that I have
exchanged my reason for the Holy Scriptures: I acknowledge no reason
but the Bible."
But as this intrepid respondent, though he may dispense with reason,
cannot quite so easily free himself from the obligations of common sense
and the canons of logic,--both of which demand consistency, and like
consequences from like premisses 'in rebus ejusdem generis', in subjects
of the same class,--I do find myself tempted to wonder, some small deal,
at the unscrupulous substitution of a few drops of water sprinkled on
the face for the Baptism, that is, immersion or dipping, of the whole
person, even if the rivers or running waters had been thought
And yet where every word in any and in all the four narratives is so
placed under the logical press as it is in this Discourse by Jeremy
Taylor, and each and every incident pronounced exemplary, and for the
purpose of being imitated, I should hold even this hazardous.
But I must wonder a very great deal, and in downright earnest, at the
contemptuous language which the same men employ in their controversies
with the Romish Church, respecting the corporal presence in the
consecrated bread and wine, and the efficacy of extreme unction.
For my own part, the assertion that what is phenomenally bread and wine
is substantially the Body and Blood of Christ, does not shock my common
sense more than that a few drops of water sprinkled on the face should
produce a momentous change, even a regeneration, in the soul; and does
not outrage my moral feelings half as much.
P. S. There is one error of very ill consequence to the reputation of
the Christian community, which Taylor shares with the Romish divines,
namely, the quoting of opinions, and even of rhetorical flights, from
the writings of this and that individual, with 'Saint' prefixed to his
name, as expressing the faith of the Church during the first five or six
Whereas it would not, perhaps, be very difficult to convince
an unprejudiced man and a sincere Christian of the impossibility that
even the decrees of the General Councils should represent the Catholic
faith, that is, the belief essential to, or necessarily consequent on,
the faith in Christ common to all the elect.
[Footnote 1: The references are here given to Heber's edition, 1822. Ed.]
[Footnote 2: The page however remains a blank. But a little essay on
punctuation by the Author is in the Editor's possession, and will be
[Footnote 3: See Euseb. 'Hist.' iii. 27.--Ed.]
[Footnote 4: 'Vindication, &c. Quer.' 13, 14, 15.--Ed.]
[Footnote 5: See the form previously exhibited in this volume, p. 93.
[Footnote 6: 'Mark' viii. 29. 'Luke' ix. 20.--Ed.]
[Footnote 7: 1 'Pet'. v. 13.--Ed.]
[Footnote 8: Lightfoot and Wall use this strong argument for the
lawfulness and implied duty of Infant Baptism in the Christian Church.
It was the universal practice of the Jews to baptize the infant children
of proselytes as well as their parents. Instead, therefore, of Christ's
silence as to infants by name in his commission to baptize all nations
being an argument that he meant to exclude them, it is a sign that he
meant to include them. For it was natural that the precedent custom
should prevail, unless it were expressly forbidden. The force of this,
however, is limited to the ceremony;--its character and efficacy are not
established by it.--Ed.]
[Footnote 9: The Author's views of Baptism are stated more fully and
methodically in the 'Aids to Reflection'; but even that statement is
imperfect, and consequently open to objection, as was frequently
admitted by Mr. C. himself. The Editor is unable to say what precise
spiritual efficacy the Author ultimately ascribed to Infant Baptism; but
he was certainly an advocate for the practice, and appeared as sponsor
at the font for more than one of his friends' children. See his 'Letter
to a Godchild', printed, for this purpose, at the end of this volume;
his 'Sonnet on his Baptismal Birthday', ('Poet. Works', ii. p. 151.) in
the tenth line of which, in many copies, there was a misprint of 'heart'
for 'front;' and the 'Table Talk', 2nd edit. p. 183. Ed.]
[Footnote 10: 'Deut.' xiii. 1-5. xviii. 22.--Ed.]
[Footnote 11: 'Galat.' i. 8, 9.--Ed.]
[Footnote 12: Pp. 206-227. Ed.]
[Footnote 13: With reference to all these notes on Original Sin, see
'Aids to Reflection', p. 250-286.--Ed.]
[Footnote 14: 'Aids to Reflection', p. 274.--Ed.]
[Footnote 15: Ante. 'Vindication, &c.' p. 357-8.]
[Footnote 16: Ibid.]
'Dupliciter vero sanguis Christi et caro intelligitur, spiritualis
ilia atque divina, de qua ipse dixit, Caro mea vere est cibus, &c.,
vel caro et sanguis, quae crucifixa est, et qui militis effusus est
In 'Epist. Ephes.' c.i.]
[Footnote 18: See 'Table Talk', p. 72, second edit. Ed.]
'Ipsum regem tradunt, volventem commentaries Numae, quum ibi occulta
solennia sacrificia Jovi Elicio facta invenisset, operatum his sacris
se abdidisse; sed non rite initum aut curatum id sacrum esse; nee
solum nullam ei oblatam Caelestium speciem, sed ira Jovis, sollicitati
prava religione, fulmine ictum cum domo conflagrasse.'
L. i. c. xxxi.--Ed.]
"This also rests upon the practice apostolical and traditive
interpretation of holy Church, and yet cannot be denied that so it
ought to be, by any man that would not have his Christendom suspected.
To these I add the communion of women, the distinction of books
apocryphal from canonical, that such books were written by such
Evangelists and Apostles, the whole tradition of Scripture itself, the
Apostles' Creed, &c. ... These and divers others of greater
consequence, (which I dare not specify for fear of being
misunderstood,) rely but upon equal faith with this of Episcopacy,"
[Footnote 21: S. xxvi.]
[Footnote 22: S. iv. 4.--Ed.]
NOTES ON THE PILGRIM'S PROGRESS.
I know of no book, the Bible excepted, as above all comparison, which I,
according to my judgment and experience, could so safely recommend as
teaching and enforcing the whole saving truth according to the mind that
was in Christ Jesus, as the Pilgrim's Progress. It is, in my conviction,
incomparably the best 'Summa Theologiae Evangelicae' ever produced by
a writer not miraculously inspired.
June 14, 1830.
It disappointed, nay surprised me, to find Robert Southey express
himself so coldly respecting the style and diction of the Pilgrim's
Progress. I can find nothing homely in it but a few phrases and single
words. The conversation between Faithful and Talkative  is a model of
unaffected dignity and rhythmical flow.
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