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ly criminal in the subjects, to refuse paying the prince moderate imposts, and in the prince, not to take care of the people under his government: Thus, when the night closes the eyelids of mankind to sleep, the heavens open inillions of eyes upon them, as it were to watch for their preservation ; so that we may fay, astra regunt homines, with the poet, &
This right of sovereigns to levy tenths, and other imposts, on their subjects, both for an acknowledgment of his sovereignty, and defraying the
expences of his government, is so. lawful and universal, that even infidel princes are not excluded from it ; so that christians, who happen to be born in the Turkish dominions, are oblig'd in conscience, as long as they live there, to discharge all the duties of their dependence. Principi populi tui non maledices; for if we were not oblig’d to this acknowledgment by the bonds of faith, yet those of society demand it; and 'tis, moreover, decided by the canons, that we ought to place an infidel in the rank of our neighbour; because he is capable of being a partaker of the benefits of our Saviour's redemption, if he will obey, the gospel. This is what Felius Christ design'd also as a lesson for us, who, when a certain lawyer ask'd him, Master, what Ball I do to inherit eternal life? the sum of his answer was, Love God and thy neighbour. To which the lawyer demanding, Who is inny neighbour? Je
sus told him the story of that inhabitant of Fea rusalem, viz. one that liv'd after the law of Moses, who falling among thieves, was stript of his raiment, and so wounded, that they left him half dead : But by chance there came down a certain priest of the law that way, and when he saw him, he pass’d by on the other side : And likewise a levite, i. e. à minister of the temple, when he was at the place; came and look'd on him, and pafs'd by on the other side ; but a certain Samaritan, one who profess'd another religion, as he journeyed, came where he was, and when he saw him, he had compassion on him, and went to him, bound up his wounds, carry'd him to an inn, and paid the host for his cure. Now, says Jefus Christ to the lawyer, which of these three, thinkest thou, was neighbour unto him that fell among the thieves? why, he did not scruple to say the Samaritan, who jew'd mercy on him. Fesiis Christ approv'd of his answer, by saying, go and do thou likewise.: So that a christian is oblig'd to look upon him as his neighbour, who shews him acts of charity. From hence I infer; that if men are oblig'd in conscience to be obe: dient and tributary subjects to an infidel prince, under whose government they live, they have much more reason, surely, to pay such obedience and tribute to a christian prince, their natural sovereign, to whom they are united by the profesion of the same faith ; and that who
ever transgresses this command, is guilty of the breach of God's law.
We will now proceed to try how far the argument will bear with respect to the clergy, The question then is, whether a secular prince has a legal authority to demand the clergy's tenths? To this I answer readily, that if the obligation of subjects to their prince is as general as that of the prince to his subjects, (which was denionstrated just now) the clergy are under an indispensible necessity to plead some special privilege that exempts them from any such obligation ; for the sovereign prince's authority is boundless and universal, and even this privilege ought not to be barely human, but they must hold it from God himself; for the authority of the prince is founded on the divine law, and not on that of man. Some men, of the best learning, have been so fenfible of the force of the argument, that finding no way to come off, they have given it up entirely, and own’d; that 'tis very true the prince has a right to exact such tribute from all his subjects, but that this secular right terminates in the laity. A fine crafty answer this, but in the main really frivolous ! for I would fain know which of these two ought, according to God's law, to be in greatest subjection to his prince? whether a Christian to a Turk, in whose dominions he lives? or an ecclesiastic, living in a christian country, to the secular prince? in the one case, 'tis ny dwelling only that ren
ders me subject to the Turk, whose sovereignty over such my dwelling is no less than ulurpation and tyranny; but in the other case, the ecclesiastic dwells in a place where the prince has the legal right of sovereignty, and is moreover united to him by the same faith. I should be glad to know what answer they could pofsibly make to that objection ; for if they should be so imprudent as to assert, chat a christian is more oblig'd to obey a Turk,than a clergyman his christian prince ; I would ask them, by what rule have the Popes so often publish'd croisadoes, and invited all christians to fall upon
the Turks, since such christians, who live under the dominion of the Turks, are, if that assertion be true,more oblig'd to obeythe Turk,than the cler gy are oblig'd to own the authority of christian princes? Now, 'tis certain that every clergyman is subject to his lay-prince in all things that are independent on the ecclesiastic miniftry. But, in the functions of the priesthood, the ecclesiastic is not subject to the temporal prince, who has in that case no authority over him; and if he should pretend to usurp it, he would deserve blame and censure, as we have shewn under another head. On the other hand, the payment of tenths is a thing fo far from being injurious to the priesthood, that it has no relation to it. For we have elsewhere demonstrated, that the clergy's poffeffion of temporalities is so far from being jure divino, that tis hardly compatible with the priesthood ;
and from hence it necessarily follows, that by virtue of such possessions, they are subject to the prince, and that the sovereign, however he became such, has authority to treat them on a level with the other subjects. Lest any fhould accuse me of replying to the same thing a hundred times, I will reduce all that I have to say, as to this head, to one single point, viz. whether 'tis possible to form an ecclesiastic fovereignty within one that is secular? The whole controversy turns upon this one question, which, however, I have divided into so
many chapters; only to render it the more clear and intelligible ; for, tho’ I have made twelve separate articles of it, they have so near an affinity to each other, that it wa simpossible to treat of the one, without breaking in upon the other.
If it be certain that not one good reason can be produc'd why ecclesiastics should be tolerated in the possession of temporalities, how vainly then do some people argue, who say, that the fecular prince is oblig'd to regard them as a thing facred, and, as it were, divine? We will now inquire how tenths canie to be first establish'd. The priest thinks he is authoriz’d to collect the tenths of the laity's pofseffions by the express command of God; that consequently, if the estate, which the priest poffesfeth, consists only in the tenths, he shall be exempt from the impost of the prince, because it would be unreasonable for him to pay