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is in all things, and runs every where, and holds the earth in his fist? And he laughs at the folly of the nations, that an artist, or a brazier, or a goldsmith, or a silversmith, makes a god, viz. by making the image of God." But the objector adds, that it would be long to set down the words of the other fathers quoted by the Doctor: and truly the Doctor thought so too at first; but because the objector says they do not make against what some of his church own and practise, I thought it might be worth the reader's pains to see them.

The words of St. Austin in this question are very plain and decretory: "For a Christian to place such an image to God" (viz. with right and left hand, sitting with bended knees, that is, in the shape of a man), " is wickedness; but much more wicked is it to place it in our hearts "." But of this I have given account in the preceding section.

Theodoret, Damascen, and Nicephorus, do so expressly condemn the picturing God, that it is acknowledged by my adversaries: only they fly for succour to the old 'mumpsimus ;' they condemn the picturing the essence of God, but not his forms and appearances; a distinction which those good old writers never thought of, but directly they condemned all images of God and the holy Trinity. And the bishops in the seventh synod, though they were worshippers of images, yet they thinking that angels were corporeal, believed they might be painted, but denied it of God expressly. And indeed it were a strange thing that God in the Old Testament should so severely forbid any image to be made of him, upon this reason, because he is invisible; and he presses it passionately, by calling it to their memory, that they heard a voice, but saw no shape; and yet that both he had formerly and did afterward shew himself, in shapes and forms which might be painted, and so the very reason of the commandment be wholly void. To which add this consideration, that although the angels did frequently appear, and consequently had forms possible to be represented in imagery, yet none of the ancients did suppose it lawful to paint angels, but they that thought them to be corporeal. Τὸν ἀόρατον εἰκονογραφεῖν ἢ διαπλάσσειν οὐκ ὅσιον, said Philo'. Το which purpose is that

* De Fide et Symb. c. 7. Tale enim simulacrum Deo nefas est Christiano in templo collocare, multò magis in corde nefarium est, ubi verè templum est.

Lib. de Legat.

of Seneca, "Effugit oculos, cogitatione visendus est ":" and Antiphanes said of God, Οφθαλμοῖς οὐχ ὁρᾶται, οὐδενὶ ἔοικε, διόπερ αὐτὸν ἐκμαθεῖν ἐξ εἰκόνος οὐδεὶς δύναται: “ God is not seen with eyes, he is like to no man; therefore no man can by an image know him." By which it appears plainly to be the general opinion of the ancients, that whatever was incorporeal was not to be painted, no, though it had appeared in symbolical forms, as confessedly the angels did. And of this the second synod of Nice * itself is a sufficient witness; the fathers of which did all approve the epistle of John, bishop of Thessalonica, in which he largely discourses against the picturing of any thing that is incorporeal. He that pleases to see more of this affair, may find much more, and to very great purpose, in a little book de Imaginibus',' in the first book of the Greek and Latin Bibliotheca Patrum;' out of which I shall only transcribe these words: "Non esse faciendum imagines Dei: imo si quis quid simile attentaverit, hunc extremis suppliciis, veluti Ethnicis communicantem dogmatis, subjici." Let them translate it that please, only I remember that Aventinus tells a story, that Pope John the Twenty-second caused to be burnt for heretics, those persons who had painted the holy Trinity; which I urge for no other reason, but to shew how late an innovation of religion this is in the church of Rome. The worship of images came in by degrees, and it was long resisted,—but until of late, it never came to the height of impiety as to picture God, and to worship him by images: but this was the state and last perfection of this sin, and hath spoiled a great part of Christianity, and turned it back to Ethnicism.

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But that I may sum up all; I desire the Roman doctors to weigh well the words of one of their own popes, Gregory II.: to the question, Cur tamen Patrem Domini nostri Jesu Christi non oculis subjicimus? Why do we not subject the Father of our Lord Jesus to the eyes?' he answers, " Quoniam Dei natura spectanda proponi non potest ac fingi:" "The nature of God cannot be exposed to be beheld, nor yet feigned." He did not conclude, that therefore we cannot make the image of his essence, but none at all, nothing

"Natur. q. 8. 30. y P. 734, &c.

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x Act. 5.

2 Annal. Biorum, lib. 7.

In Epistola quam Baronius Græcè edidit tom. 9. Annal. ad A. D. 726. in

margine.

of him to be exposed to the sight. And that this is his direct and full meaning, besides his own words, we may conclude from the note which Baronius makes upon it. "Postea in usu venisse, ut pingatur in ecclesia Pater et Spiritus Sanctus:" " Afterward it became a use in the church (viz. the Roman) to paint the Father and the Holy Ghost." And therefore besides the impiety of it, the church of Rome is guilty of innovation in this particular also, which was the thing I intended to prove.

TWO LETTERS

ΤΟ

PERSONS CHANGED IN THEIR RELIGION.

ALSO

THREE LETTERS

TO A

GENTLEMAN THAT WAS TEMPTED TO THE COMMUNION OF

THE ROMISH CHURCH.

Οπόσους ἄν τις ᾖ κεκτημένος ἑταίρους, τοσούτοις μὲν ὀφθαλμοῖς ἃ δεῖ βλέπει.

Dion. Orat. 1. de Regno.

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