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nerally understood by moft People, namely, the actual bowing down to Pictures or Images, and paying them religious Worship, all Proteftant's night safely hug ihemselves (as we fear too many do without any good Grounds) with the Thought that they never were guilty of this heinous Sin. Nay, in one Sense of the Word, namely the wor. Thipping of false Gods under the Shape of Idols, the Papifts ihemselves may please themselves with the same Fancy, and plead their Innocence, and consequently none but the Heathens will be found Offenders againt this Law.
But, as has been before observed, the Divine Çommandments are exceeding broad, and reach even to the Thoughts of the Heart ; it will be well therefore, if, afrer a due Examination into every Branch of the Duries required, and Sins forbidden by this Law, we can any of us clear ourselves of having been adual, and frequent Offenders against it. We do not indeed imagine, that any of us Prateftants have worshipped the true God under any gross corporeal Representation, or have set up the Images or Pictures of any Saints, or falfe Gods to adore them : But have we never come into the Place where the Divine Being is worfhipped, and to be supposed more immediately present, with as little Awe, Reverence, and Respect, as if it were only the Temple of an Idol ?
: Now, what is this, but an heinous Violation of this Commandment?' Do those fine Ladies and Gentlemen, that bow and curtsy to each other across the Church, or hand about their SnuffBoxes, or ftare about them, or fall asleep, or perhaps giggle and laugh, consider this ! Do they consider, that this Behaviour, which would hardly ruir a Playhouse, is far more unbecomiog the House of God? Can shey possibly be so besorted as to. think that is a Place to go to only to see Falhions,
and observe the Dress of their Neighbours? And yer, it is much to be feared, this is far from being the greatest Enormity committed there ; it is much to be feared many go there only to get, or see their Sweet-hearts ; to ogle and caft about their wanton Glances, lay Snares for each other, and make Con
quests. · Nay, which is yet worse, and more criminal, if any Thing more criminal can be, it is much to be feared, many have prostituted the House of God to the vileft Uses, and made it a Place of Appointment and Rendezvous ; it some have not gone even farther yet, and made it a Place of Resort, where to pick up Wenches and Gallants? An Attempt, a Moral Heathen would have trembled at !' It is much to be feared, the Cathedral of St. Paul's, and Wefminfer- Abbey, have been but too often profti. tured to such Uses ; whereby the audacious Offenders have licerally made the Living God serve with their Sins, as he emphatically complains, Ifaiah xliii. 24. Are not all these Pra&ices proclaiming that we look upon the House of God as no more than the Temple of an Idol? Undoubtedly they are, and consequently every one who is guilty of them, is guilty of the higheft Profanation, and the grosselt Breach of this Commandment.
We know indeed, that amongst the Roman Cam tholicks, and especially in Spain, Portugal, and Italy, such Pra&tices are very frequent, and in a manner openly avowed; for we can hardly read a Novel, written by their own Authors, where the Scene of Adion is laid in those Countries, bur we meet with Assignacions and Appointments made at their Churches : Bur where is the Wonder such Things fhould be admitted amongst them, when it is no. toriously known, they are daily guilty of actual Idolatry in the same place, and consequently of a literal and express Violation of this Commandment?
And fo sensible are their Clergy of this, and that they are condemned by their own Practice, that they have eraced it quite our of the Command*ments, and inftead thereof, to make the Number · Ten, have divided one of the others into two. As
we profess, however, a purer Religion, it were to be wished we would by 'no Means copy afrer fuch bad Patterns, or be guilty of such gross Profana'tions; especially as the Almighty has assured us he is a jealous God, that is, one who will not overlook such Crimes ; and also that he will visit the Sins of the Fathers upon the Children, to thew us that we may thereby involve our Children in Misery, and entail a Curse upon our innocent Pofterity, and that for three or four Generations.
· Having premised thus much in general, in order to alarm, and undeceive those who imagine themfelves well affured of having never transgressed this Law, we shall next descend to all the other Parti'culars, whereby this Commandment is violated. And firit, the Making of any graven Image, or the Likeness of any Thing, with Intent to bow down thereto and worship it, is exprefly forbidden by this Commandment, and whoever is guilty thereof, is a direct Transgressor of this Law: This surely will not be denied by any one of common Modesty, as it is not only against she Sense, but even the Lerter of this Precept ; how then will the whole Body of the Roman Catholicks, with their Holy Father, as they call the Pope, at the Head of chem, who daily worship not only Crucifixes, but the images and Pictures of Sainrs, and especially of the Virgin Mary, clear themselves of heing gross and open Violators of this Divine Mandare?.
Bur indeed they have trumped up a Sort of Je. suitical Salvo for his, wherewith they arte mpr, tho' in vain, ro évide the Charge ; and ihis is by making a Distinction between the Worship chey pay
to God, and that they pay to Saints, which latter, they pretend, is of much lower Degree: than the former ; accordingly they call the former Latria, and the latter Dulia, by way of Distinction, Befides, they tell us by way of Excuse, though it is a very poor one, that they only address themselves to the Saints to beg their Prayers : Granting this were fo, which is utterly false, as every 'Man of Senfe knows who has been in Popish Countries, this would be no Mitigation of their Crime; because, by this Means, they substitute every single Saint, whom they thus invoke, in the Room of Chrift, whom they thereby rob of his Honour, making as many Intercessors and Mediators as there are Saints, which is flatly against the whole Tenor, of the Scriptures, as well as against this Commandment. .
But they are likewise daily,guilty of another open Violation of this Law, which is, if possible, yet worse than this; and that is, by their Adoration and worshipping of the Hoft, or Sacramental Wafer, to which they cannot deny that they pay the highest Veneration; insomuch, that were a Protestant to meet it in the Street, when it is carrying in Proces-, fion to a fick Person, and not surn out of the Way, he muft either kneel down, or 'would run the Hazard of being knocked down, though the Streets were never so dirty. If this is not as gross Idola. try as ever the Heathens were guilty of, we know not what is į nay, there is something more absurd and monstrous cherein, than ever there was in any of the Pagan Riies or Ceremonies : The Ephefians, who worshipped the image of Diana, 'had Yome. thing more to Tay for themselves, and were far more excusable ; inasmuch as they pretended it came down from Heaven, whereas every one knows the other came but a little before, perhaps that same Day, ont of the Oven. But what say the Papists in Excuse for this so impious; so barefaced, and so common Practice of Idolatry?
Why truly, in order to defend it, they have recourle to the most monstrous' Absurdiry, the most Thameless Impofture that ever was attempted to be palmed upon Mankind. Oh! say these worthy Gentlemen, the Romiß Priests, who have the Modesty to attempt bantering Mankind out of their Senses, we do not worship the Water, but the real Body of Jesus Chrift, which is actually present af. ter the Words of Consecration have been faid, though under the Appearance and Form of a Wa. fer. An Assertion so'monstrous, so full fraught with Impudence, and Contradiction to almost all our Senses, that none bur those political Jugglers, who daily find their Account in the Support of this gross Impofture, would have had the Front to maintain it !' Nor could any one, but a blind Papist, who is kept in Romiß ignorance and Bondage, and denied the Use of the Bible, who reposes an implicit Confidence in the Traditions, Authority, and Infallibility of his Church, and who has given up his Conscience and Understanding to the abfolute Guidance of the Priefts, be brought to swallow or believe it.
In effect, it is a very great Question, whether half the Romilla Clergy themselves give any Cre. dit thereto; as it is very certain, that many of their Popes and Cardinals have not even believed in Christ himself: And indeed it is much to be fearcd, that this fingly absurd and monstrous Doctrine of Tranfubftantiation (which was utterly unknown, and unheard of in the Primitive Church for the firft 600 Years, and was never made an Article of Faith, even amongst the Papifts, till the 12th Cen. tury) has not made more concealed Atheists, or at lealt Deifts, and done more Harm to Chriftianity, by prejudicing the Jews, Mahometans, and Pagans more than ever before against ir, than all the other crroneous Tenets, that ever were held, either by