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such a distinction as the Observer points out. The distinction we contend for is a distinction between what is revealed and what is not revealed. What is revealed we hold to be of faith ; what is not revealed is matter of science or of opinion. We can, then, very consistently contend that the whole revelation must be believed, and yet tolerate differences on matters of opinion. But the distinction the Observer speaks of is a distinction in the revealed word itself, and presupposes one part of revelation is of faith, and another part of minor importance, a matter of opinion only. Of this distinction we do not wish to avail ourselves, for we do not admit that any part of God's word is a matter of opinion only ; and we would thank the Observer to tell us by what authority it can say that any thing God has revealed may be rightfully treated as a matter of opinion.
The Observer makes it a sin in us, that “ opinion has no place in ” our “creed.” Is that which is held as opinion held as one's creed? What is the meaning, in theological language, of credo? If one admits opinion into his creed, what is his creed but an opinion? The editor of the Observer distinguishes between faith and opinion. Does he include in his creed any thing not of faith? Of course not. Why, then, complain of us for not admitting opinion into ours ? But by what authority does he distinguish in God's word what is necessary to be believed, and what is not, and include the former in his creed, and exclude the latter from it?
The Observer says, in these vital truths there is a substantial agreement between all orthodox Protestants. This is saying, in other words, that all who do not substantially differ do substantially agree! Who are orthodox Protestants, and by what authority can Protestants say who are or are not orthodox ? The only answer they have to the question, what is orthodoxy and what heterodoxy, is that given by the Protestant student :- “Orthodoxy is my doxy, heterodoxy is your doxy.” Protestants are all orthodox, each in his own estimation ; all heterodox in the estimation of each other. The editor of the Episcopal Observer, notwithstanding his airs, has no more right to call himself orthodox than the editors of the Christian Examiner, between whom and himself there is a fundamental difference, have to call themselves orthodox. Of all pitiable sights, the Protestant talking of orthodoxy is the pitiablest. The editor of the Observer can claim to be less heterodox than his Unitarian brethren, only because he departs less from the Catholic faith ; and the moment he alleges this, he recognizes the authority of the Catholic Church, which it is his main business to calumniate. It is worthy of note, that Protestants in general feel themselves sound in the faith just in proportion as they find themselves agreeing with the Catholic Church.
The editor of the Observer would do well, when he wishes to attack the Church on historical grounds, to be careful to draw his history from authentic sources. If he relies on such authors as Bishop Hopkins, or any authors his own church can furnish, he will be betrayed into many ridiculous mistakes. These Anglican ecclesiastical historians are in all cases unsafe guides, and in no instance, even in matters comparatively indifferent, have we found them worthy of reliance. The position of their pretended church is such that it is not safe for them either to see or to tell the truth.
The editor of the Observer would also do well, before attempting to pit council against council, to ascertain what is a council, and that the Catholic predicates infallibility of no council not held to be æcumenical, and of no acts of an ecumenical council not approved by the sovereign Pontiff. Had he known this, he would not have spoken of the second council of Ephesus, nor have told us that “the second council of Ephesus, held in 449, condemned Flavianus and sent him into banishment for rejecting the heresy of Eutyches ; and the council of Chalcedon, convened two years after, condemned and banished Dioscorus for maintaining the heresy discarded by Flavianus." — p. 330. For there was no second council of Ephesus. The only council of Ephesus was held in 431, before Eutyches had even broached his heresy. Nor was Flavian ever condemned by any council. The mistake of the learned editor arose, probably, from his confounding an illegal and tumultuous assembly, commonly known in history as the Ephesian Latrocinium, with an ecumenical council, wbich it was not, and was never admitted to be. This shows the necessity of studying ecclesiastical history, before attempting to write it.
Protestants frequently allege that council has contradicted council, council has contradicted Pope, and Pope has contradicted Pope and council; but no instance of such contradiction ever has been or ever can be adduced, for no such instan- . ces exist. The instances commonly adduced are all founded in mistake, and are as easily answered as that about Flavianus and Dioscorus. The Protestant either calls that a council
which was not a council, or he mistakes the real question decided, or the actual purport of the decision, in consequence of his general ignorance of Catholic theology and history.
But, as we have intimated, we have no intention of following the Observer through his attack on the Church. If he concedes his inability to maintain his own thesis, we will then meet him, or any one else, on the merits of Catholicity. But, till then, we will not consent to be diverted from the main issue we have raised.
In conclusion, we will say, our argument has run out to a greater length than we intended, and to a greater length than the feeble arguments, if arguments they can be called, of the Observer really warranted; but we make no apology to our readers, for we have aimed to give to our remarks a general character, and a fair, full, and final discussion of that branch of the subject to which we have in the main confined ourselves, rather than to effect the comparatively insignificant purpose of refuting the editor of the Episcopal Observer.
ART. II. – National Greatness.
National greatness is at all times and in all countries a subject of very deep interest, and one on which it is highly dangerous to entertain false or erroneous views. It is especially so for the American people ; because we have founded a government which rests on popular opinion, and must follow its direction ; and because we entertain very lofty notions of the greatness to which we have already attained, and are disposed to indulge in no little patriotic pride when contemplating what we have done since we became an independent nation, and looking forward to what we are likely to do hereafter.
It is true, that now and then is heard a discordant note in the general harmony of self-glorification ; it is true, that here and there a disappointed, discontented, perhaps ascetic voice, is heard intimating that all is not gold that glisters, that the sparkling eye and blooming cheek do not always indicate sound health and promise long life, and that beneath the festive robes and wreaths of Aowers may often, as at Egyptian feasts, be detected the ghastly and grinning features of death ; but, in general, the great mass of us, from New England's loftiest statesinan down to the pettiest Fourth of July orator, loudly applaud ourselves for what we have done, are sure that we have chosen the right path, that we surpass in true wisdom all the nations which have been or now are, and that nothing remains for us but to keep on in the way we have thus far followed, and indulge the most glorious and thrilling anticipations of future greatness and renown.
And have we not the right to do so ? We are merely of yesterday ; and yet, what have we not done ! We have felled the primitive forests, and planted the rose in the wilderness; we have erected the thronged city, the populous town, the thriving village, where within the memory of the middle-aged man prowled the beast of prey, or curled the smoke of the wigwam. We have intersected a continent with our canals and railways; we have whitened every ocean with our sails, and filled every port with our ships ; and are rivalling, in the quality, variety, and extent of our manufactures, the more renowned industrial nations of the globe. Our whole population is employed. The hammer of industry rings from morning till night, till far into the night, and we seem to have the Midas gift of turning whatever we touch into gold. Nor have we stopped here. We have dotted the land all over with meetinghouses, schoolhouses, academies, colleges, and universities, and our whole population goes to school. We have an active press, throwing off daily its million of sheets for our instruction or amusement. We have hospitals, asylums, retreats for the insane, the blind, the deaf, the dumb ; poor-houses for vagrants and paupers ; gaols and penitentiaries for the vicious and criminal. Over all we have a free, pure, economical, and effective government, admirably reconciling the authority of the state with the freedom of the subject; and withal the priceless blessings of religious liberty, permitting sects the most opposed one to the other to meet as brothers, leaving every man free to worship God, or not to worship him, — according to the dictates of his own conscience. Have we not a right, then, to applaud ourselves ? Are we not, in fact, a great people ? And is not this a great country?
So most of us think, feel, say ; and woe to him who should dare think, feel, or say otherwise. And yet, it may be worth our while to subject this estimate which we form of ourselves to a more rigid examination than we seem to have done. If it be well founded, the examination will confirm it ; if not well founded, VOL. III. NO. I.
the examination will do no harm, — for few of us are prepared to adopt a conclusion, unfavorable to national pride and vanity.
That this is a great country, if we speak of the territory, is very true, though not much greater than China, and far less than Russia, and withal a great part of it as yet uncultivated, and no little of it even untrodden by civilized man. But whether we are a great people or not, or whether we have any special ground of self-adulation, is another and a different question; and a question which will be variously answered, according to the views which are taken of what constitutes true national greatness. Our judgments of the comparative greatness of different nations depend entirely on the standard of greatness we adopt, and by which we judge them. We call a people great or small in proportion as they do or do not conform to our standard of greatness. Vary the standard, and we vary our judgment. The people we called great, when judged by one standard, we may call not great, if judged by a different standard. All, therefore, depends on the standard we adopt. Consequently, in order to determine whether we are really a great people or not, we must first determine what is the true standard of national greatness.
What, then, is true national greatness ? We answer, that nation is greatest in which man may most easily and effectually fulfil the true and proper end of man. The nation, under the point of view we here consider the subject, is in the people. Its greatness must, then, be in the greatness of the people. The people are a collection or aggregation of individuals, and their greatness taken collectively is simply their greatness taken individually. Consequently, the greatness of a nation is the greatness of the individuals that compose it. The question of national greatness resolves itself, therefore, into the question of individual greatness. The greatness of the individual consists in his fulfilling the great ends of his existence, the ends for which Almighty God made him and placed him here. is truly great who neglects life's great ends, nor can one be said in truth to approach greatness any farther than he fulfils them.
In order, then, to determine in what true national greatness consists, we must determine in what consists true individual greatness ; and in order to determine in what true individual greatness consists, we must determine what is the true end of man ; that is, what is the end to wbich Almighty God has appointed man, and which he is while here to labor to secure. What, then, is the end of man ? For what has our Maker