« ForrigeFortsett »
bought them, having diffused itself over most of the Asian and African Churches, the swift Destruction which was foretold by St. Peter, was brought upon them by the Saracens, who in a short Time over-run the greatest part of Asia and Africa, desolated their Cities, destroyed their Churches, and laid waste many fruitful Countries ; so that in many Respects, there seems to be a great Resemblance between the Calamities that fell upon the ten Tribes by the Asyrians, and those that were brought upon the Christian Church by the Saracens.
The two Tribes which remained (who, notwithstaning all the Calamities that came upon the ten Tribes, and the many Warnings they had given them from Heaven by several Prophets, would not be reclaim'd from their Fondness for Idols) were carried Captive to Babylon, their Temple plundered and burnt, their Cities, and Countrey laid desolate. The Parallel, to which is the State of the remaining part of the Eaftern or Greek Churches, into which the grosseft IdoJatries were introduc'd under Christian Names; and so obstinate were the Ecolesiastics in carrying on this Impiety, that notwithstanding all the Attempts that were made by some of the Greek Emperors to suppress Idolatry, it was not only openly profess’d, but avow'd and establish'd in the Greek and Latin Churches.
This was soon followed by the terrible Vengeance that fell upon the Greek Empire and Churches, by the Turks, who took Constantinople the Capital City of the Empire; in the Siege and Sacking of which, are many Circumstances which very much resemble the Calamities that befel the Jews in the Siege and taking of Jerusalem. But this Suggestion is submitted to the Confideration of those who are more vers'd in Ecclesiastical History than I pretend to be.
What is to be the Fate of the Mystical Babylon, and the Antichristian Empire, by whose Idolatries, Impiecies and Tyranny the Church has been so long
polluted and oppressid, is very exprefly foretold
tire, but have omitted many Chapters relating to the
The History of their Kings contained in the Books
Though the Holy Scripture instructs us in all Things
nounces eternal Vengeance against all Ungodliness and Unrighteousness of Men.
The Reasoning upon Righteousness and Judgments to come, by a Prisoner at the Bar, threw once a Roman Governor into a Fit of Trembling; it is from these Pangs that Men of vicious Lives are endeavouring to skreen themselves by Infidelity, and the Hopes that their Souls and Bodies will expire together; and this is the Opiate, upon which their fancy'd Happiness depends.
It is too apparent, that Infidelity is become the fashionable Vice of this Age; but I am persuaded nothing can more effectually tend to the putting a Stop to it, than the pious Care which you take of the Charity-Schools, where Children are taught both to believe, and do as the Gospel requires.
If the Harmony of the Holy Scriptures which I have attempted to make, and am very sensible is here imperfectly perform’d, (for I do not pretend to Criticism ;) shall by the Blessing of the Almighty be of the least Use, either in giving Encouragement to any to read the Scriptures with Attention, or shall afford them any Asistance in the right Understanding of them, so that they may take Delight in the Law of God, and meditate therein Day and Night, my Labour will be fully recompensed; for the very Searchies into these Treasures of Divine Wisdom and Knowledge, afford such Delights as are not easily to be express’d.
If it shall please the Almighty to prolong my Life, I will endeavour to pursue the fame Method in Relation to the Psalms and the New Testament, in which I have made some Progress.
The Translation of the Letter from the Earl of Mirandola to his Nephew, contains so much true Piety, and such strong Reasons for the Practice of it, and so fully recommends the reading of the Holy
Scriptures with Diligence and Attention, that I have added it to this Essay.
Gentlemen, That the Almighty may bless and fucceed your pious Endeavours in encouraging, instructing, and maintaining the Children educated in the CharitySchools, and chat you may reap the Fruits of your Labours here, by seeing these Children become useful, honest, and religious ; and that you may receive the Reward of
your pious Charity bereafter, is the hearty Prayer of
Your most Humble Servant,
The Translation of a Letter from the Earl
of MIRANDOL A and CONCORDIA, to his Nephew, then an Officer in the <Irmy, of the Emperor Charles the
This Earl was esteemed the most beautiful Per
son of that Age, and a Man of the most exalted
Genius. He quitted all his great Employments in the Im
perial Court. He died in the Flower of his Age, about the Year 1494.
HAT you are surrounded with Temptations to
do Evil, and to violate the Rules of Piety you have laid down for the Conduct of your Life, ought neither to be the Subject of your Wonder, your Grief, or you Fear : For how much greater would the Wonder be, if to you the Way to Heaven was broad and easy, when all Mankind have found it narrow, and a Passage, not to be gained without much Labour and Difficulty? Can you imagine that there are now no more Allurements in the World, no spiritual Enemies to encounter, or no carnal Affections to be overcome?
But St. James says, Rejoice, when you fall into divers Temptations, and very justly too; for where is the Hope of Glory, if there is none of Victory? Or how can there be a Victory, when there is nothing to conquer? Tell me, my dear Nephew, if any of the Things of this World are to be obtained without