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and crazy spider-legged tables which those who, in the days of Cromwell, wished to banish all decent ornament or imposing ceremonial from the service of the temple, substituted so generally for the former altars in our churches. To the disgust and regret of many bers of the church, they have been allowed, in too many of our churches, to remain to the present day. The fact must be, that the profane hands, and the violent circumstances, which placed them within the rails of our altars, have been, in many cases, forgotten; while time, and reverence for the solemn mysteries to which they have been so long applied, have now invested these monuments of the weakness of puritan prejudice with a degree of sanctity, and so these skeleton figures of desolation have been permitted still to stand within the chancels of our sanctuaries, although their forlorn appearance there conveys a silent censure upon those who, while their own houses are furnished with luxurious expensiveness, can see with indifference such miserable appointments for the house of prayer and the table of commiunion.
I have already said that this village possesses little to reward the search of the antiquarian. The advowson was bought by the master and fellows of Clare Hall, of the family of Lambert of Boyton, Wilts, from a fund left to that society for the purchase of livings. Its last incumbent was the Rev. Henry Hale. A plain white marble slab may be seen near the altar, erected to the memory of the Rev. Abrans Evans, his immediate predecessor. The registers, of which there are none remaining previous to 1688, do not possess much interest. In 1706, Elenor, and, in 1731, Anne, successive wives of Giles Thornburgh, the then rector, (the latter aged 65—6,) were buried; and in 1735 he paid the debt of nature himself
. The affidavit respecting the burial of parties in woollen only seems to have been regularly taken, and as regularly recorded in the book of registry. Anabaptist tenets appear to have been prevalent in the neighbourhood early in the last century; as, in 1722, John Dyer, and, in 1725, Mary Dyer, of the parish of Heytesbury, and, in 1723, another person, an inhabitant of Calne, being before unbaptized, and of years of discretion to answer for themselves, were baptized in the parish church of Orcheston St. Mary. In the register book of baptisms belonging to the adjoining village of Rolleston there are some entries, about that period, of the names of certain children, of whom the entry certifies that they were not baptized-“non baptizati.” In 1696 à marriage is recorded of two persons, both of Lavington, Epi., which took place in Orcheston St. Mary church, “cū facultate" being marked in the margin of the Orcheston register; and in 1714 is the following curious entry :
“ John Bredmore and Ann Sellwood, both of Chittern, All Saints, were married October 17th, 1714."
[To this is added a coarsely-worded declaration, that the bride had only such clothes as decency required, and no
* head The singular nature of this entry is sufficiently accounted for by the tradition that the husbands of ladies who might present themselves at the altar in the manner thus described would not be held answerable
in law for the previous debts of the parties with whom they contracted marriage. In 1699 is entered the following reflection of some surrogate :
“ Exd. Pr W. W. Surgte. not keepd according too Law.” The censure appears not to have been undeserved, and I am happy to observe that it seems to have led to some slight improvement.
A large house, which has been tenanted some years by farmers, closely adjoins the church; it is understood to be the intention of Ernley Warrener, Esq., its present owner, to remove it.
The people of this quiet village, although secluded by their enviable retreat from the turmoils which disturb larger societies, have yet been roused, by their observation of the fearful signs of these evil days upon which we are fallen, into an apprehension that their religious privileges are perilled by measures actually taken or apprehended; and they have, accordingly, so far overcome their habitual disinclination to all interference in politics, that they have come forward to assert that they hold the politics of the Bible, and have subscribed an anxious and dutiful address to the King, in which they have besought his Majesty to uphold the church to which they are so deeply indebted and so warmly attached. Indeed, the religious privileges which the villagers in this valley enjoy are such as are well calculated to make them grateful sons of our mother church, as well as good Christians. For the convenience of the herdsmen who, from their necessary occupation upon the downs, might not be able to attend divine service at the usual hour of afternoon prayer, the hour of service is fixed, at two out of these five churches, and at the adjoining church of Tylshead, at six in the evening. By this arrangement, many, who would else miss the P.M. service, are accommodated; while some, who have inclination and leisure to attend three full services of the church each Lord's day, have the opportunity of doing so without travelling far for the purpose, as the distance between the church of Orcheston St. Mary, at one end of the valley, and that of Rolleston, the last church at the other end, does not exceed two miles. It has occasionally happened that clergymen, strangers to the country, who have undertaken the discharge of this last service for a friend, have passed the following night upon the downs on horseback, from the extreme difficulty of discovering and keeping the right path amid the mazy tracks upon the plain.
The liberality with which each widow brought forward her mite, and each child its contribution, to the treasury of the church, at a late collection in the church of Orcheston St. Mary, after a sermon preached in obedience to the King's letter, in aid of the funds of the Church Building Society, (a large proportion of the collection, which amounted to 31. 78. 472., being in copper,) is calculated to shew that the church of the poor possesses the warm affections of the poor; and that many a heart will sigh in secret, and many a bitter tear be shed, of which the world may never hear, if ever the machinations of the many enemies of Christ's holy catholic church shall succeed (which God of His merciful grace avert !) to obtain the overthrow of the Church of England.
E. W. July, 1834.
WORKS OF PENANCE ARE NOT SATISFACTIONS
TO DIVINE JUSTICE.
TRACTS AGAINST POPERY, NO. III. It is allowed by all that remission of sins cannot be obtained except by the intervention of a full and exact satisfaction: but what that satisfaction is, and by whom rendered, which makes up for the injury offered to God, and by such compensation extinguishes the whole punishment due to sin, is a matter of debate between the orthodox and the papist. The papists think that our Lord, by his obedience and death, so satisfied God, that every true penitent may at any time gain remission of guilt through this his satisfaction, but (if he sin after baptism) not an absolute remission, but a merciful commutation of punishment. For according to their notion, after guilt is remitted, the very same punishment of the bodily senses must be endured as the sinner would have endured in hell, only taking away its eternity. For the plan of divine justice requires that, when we are freed from guilt by Christ, we should satisfy the account of punishment, either by satisfaction in this life or by suffering in purgatory. Now the papists think that satisfaction is made to God's justice by works of penance; which are either imposed according to the judgment of the priest, or are voluntarily undertaken at the will of the penitent, or, finally, are inflicted from without,—“ if any one, by patiently bearing such inflictions, and offering them to God for his sins, makes them morally his own," as Suarez teaches. And in requiring satisfaction from us, they think that God acts so strictly that he requires an exact and full measure of the punishment due; and if the sinner has not paid it, how much or how little soever of it is left, it must be paid in purgatory, to the last farthing. Such is the argument of the popish fable.
We, on the contrary, teach, that our Lord offered to God that expiatory sacrifice by which alone the guilt as well as the punishment of all our sins is expiated and expunged, so that the duty of satisfying God for the injury offered to him does not rest on penitents in any part. Nor does any debt of punishment (taxed according to the rule of avenging justice) remain to be paid, by any actions or sufferings of theirs, after the remission of guilt. The punishments therefore enjoined to penitents among the ancients, we affirm to have been imposed, not to satisfy divine justice, but the offended church. The works of penance voluntarily undertaken and offered by the faithful we judge not to have been the payments of redemption or satisfaction, but exercises of humility and mortification. Finally, we say that afflictions and misfortunes which, after the remission of guilt, are inflicted, either by God himself or by man, on the pious and reconciled, have no reference to the satisfaction of divine justice as if not yet expiated, but to the bridling our corrupt concupiscence, which is not extirpated even in the regenerate.
We deny, then, that works of penance, or any human works whatever, are satisfactions of divine justice, or compensations for the injury done to God, which is proved, first, by the definition of “ satisfaction;" for “ satisfaction is the giving an equivalent for an equivalent,” as Scotus truly teaches. But who will say that all our works of penance, if brought into one heap, can equal the pains of hell, even not considering the eternity of hell torments ? When, then, the papists suppose that they are exhibiting and offering these satisfactions of theirs to God, to buy off the pains of hell, they do just the same as if one condemned to the rack should say that he is willing to prick his finger with a needle, and by this work of penance to buy off the punishment laid on him. But he who pays less than he owed, has not yet made satisfaction. These satisfaction-men, then, never can set themselves right, for they never can make a satisfaction equal to the punishment settled for sin,
Secondly, we shew the same from the quality of our works. For the best of them are not wholly free from their faults and imperfections. If, therefore, the matter were transacted in the court of strict. justice, we should be so far from expiating or expunging our debt of punishment by our works or sufferings, that we should be daily contracting a new one. But suppose our works were free from all blemish. Yet, as satisfaction is to be made from our own goods, and not from goods due and belonging to our creditor on another score, our good works, which are the gift of God himself, and our acts of obedience, which certainly are most wholly due to God on the mere score of creation, can never go to the discharge of a new debt. As often, therefore, as we act or suffer well and holily, we endeavour to satisfy the call of duty, and to approve ourselves to God by fulfilling his will ; but we do not dream that by these works we are expiating the vengeance due to our sins, or making up for the injury done to the Divine Majesty, by exhibiting to him, in this endeavour of ours, a worthy satisfaction.
Thirdly, we confirm our cause by the consideration of the divine remission of sins. For remission of sins is the work of free mercy. But that sin is not freely remitted, to expiate which a sufficient satisfaction is made by the sinner himself. Moreover, the remission made by God is always entire, and not by halves. But to be unwilling to exact the whole punishment, or such and such a degree of eternal punishment, and yet to be willing to inflict some, and that a very bitter degree of punishment, cannot be called an entire remission, but a punishing in moderation. Finally, the remission of sin should be such that, when it is obtained, the sinner can settle in his conscience that he is now fully reconciled to God, and has obtained peace with him. But who can feel this who thinks that he is still to be tortured in the most fearful manner, to satisfy an avenging God?
Fourthly, the truth of our opinion appears from the perfection of that satisfaction which Christ himself offered to God the Father, in the name of all believers. For it is most certain that our Redeemer offered to God a price abundantly sufficient to expiate the guilt and the punishment of our sins. Nor is it less certain that this satisfaction is imputed to all those who believe and repent, just as if it had been offered to God by themselves. If, therefore, God should require satisfaction from the members of Christ, which they have paid to the last farthing in Christ their head, he would twice take vengeance for the same thing, and would do a manifest injury to the Redeemer and the redeemed.
Lastly, the error of the papists is shewn by the nature of divine justice. For justice never inflicts the vengeance of punishment except with regard to the debt of guilt. When, then, the satisfaction of Christ abolished the guilt on which the debt of punishment is founded, he took away the object of divine justice, and, consequently, the necessity of human satisfaction. To this it must be added, that, according to the laws of justice, no satisfaction can redeem the punishment due to sin, except by an express ordinance of God for accepting such satisfaction in the room of a ransom. Christ's satisfaction has this privilege by the eternal decree of God; but wretched sinners cannot bring forward any ordinance of God in right of which he is obliged to accept these works of penance for the eternal punishment due to sin. The guilty party, then, must contend in vain that that is a satisfactory infliction which he undergoes, not by the decree of the judge, but of his own pleasure.
In his Thirty-third Determination, Bishop Davenant argues this question again, on grounds very slightly different, observing that the papists have great reason to be anxious on this point. “For if punishment is remitted with guilt, there is an end to purgatory, to papal indulgences, to prayers for the dead, and the everlasting and profitable traffic in masses.
With respect to the argument that we find God inflicting punishment on Moses, David, and others, after their sin was forgiven, it is to be remembered that we are to look to the end of punishment in considering this question. If a judge orders an offender's hand to be cut off
, he does it as a punishment. If a physician orders the same, he does it as a remedy. So here afflictions are sent by God, not as a judge, to take vengeance, but as a kind father, to remedy and cure the evils of our nature.
SELECTIONS FROM EVELYN'S DIARY.
( Continued from vol. vii., p. 28.) 1686. 14 March.— The Bp. of Bath & Wells preached on 6 John 17, a most excellent & pathetic discourse : after he had recommended the duty of fasting, & other penitential duties, he exhorted to constancy in the Protestant religion, detestation of the unheard-of cruelties of the French, & stirring up a liberal contribution. This sermon was the more acceptable, as it was unexpected from a Bishop who had undergone the censure of being inclined to Popery, the contrary whereof no man could shew more. This indeede