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Europe, and sprinkled on its very mountain tops, cry out too dreadfully, that it is a dismal cheat. Wars, the most savage and unprovoked; oppressions, the most desperate; tyrannies, the most ruthless; massacres, the most horrible; death-fires, and tortures the most exquisite, perpetuated one on another for the faith, and in the very name of God; dungeons and inquisitions; the blood of the Vaudois, and the flaming homes of the Covenanters are all in their memories, and give the lie to their professions. No! Poland rent in sunder; the iron heel of Austria on the prostrate neck of Italy; and invasions and aggressions without end, make Christian nations laugh with a hollow mockery in their hearts, in the very midst of their solemn professions of the Christian virtue and faith.
But I may be told that this character applies rather to past Europe than to the present. What! are all these things at an end? For what then are all these standing armies? What all these marching armies? What these men-of-war on the ocean? What these atrocities going on from year to year in Spain? Has any age or nation seen such battles waged as we have witnessed in our time? How many WATERLOOS can the annals of the earth reckon? What Timour, or Zenghis Khan, can be compared to the Napoleon of modern Europe? the greatest scourge of nations that ever arose on this planet; the most tremendous meteor that ever burnt along its surface! Have the multitude of those who deem themselves the philosophical and refined, as well as the Christian of Europe, ceased to admire this modern Moloch, and to forget in his individual and retributory sufferings at St. Helena, the countless agonies and the measureless
ruin that he inflicted on innocent and even distant nations? While we retain a blind admiration of martial genius, wilfully shutting our senses and our minds to the crimes and the pangs that constitute its shadow, it is laughable to say that we have progressed beyond our fathers in Christian knowledge. At this moment all Europe stands armed to the teeth. The peace of every individual nation is preserved, not by the moral probity and the mutual faith which are the natural growth of Christian knowledge, but by the jealous watch of armed bands, and the coarse and undisguised force of brute strength. To this moment not the slightest advance is made towards a regular system of settling national disputes by the head instead of the hand. To this moment the stupid practice of settling individual disputes between those who pride themselves on their superior education and knowledge, by putting bullets instead of sound reasons into each other's heads, is as common as ever. If we really are a civilized people, why do we not abandon barbarian practices? If we really are philosophical, why do we not shew it? It is a poor compliment to our learning, our moral and political philosophy, and above all, to our religion, that at this time of day if a dispute arise between us as nations or as men, we fall to blows, instead of to rational inquiry and adjustment. Is Christianity then so abstruse? No!" He that runneth may read, and the way-faring man, though a fool, cannot err therein." Then why, in the name of common sense, have we not learned it, seeing that it so closely concerns our peace, our security, and our happiness? Surely a thousand years is time enough to teach that which is so plain, and of such
immense importance! We call ourselves civilized, yet we are daily perpetrating the grossest outrages; we boast of our knowledge, yet we do not know how to live one with another half so peaceably as wolves; we term ourselves Christians, yet the plainest injunction of Christ, "to love our neighbour as ourselves," we have yet, one thousand eight hundred and thirtyeight years after his death, to adopt! But most monstrous of all has been the moral blindness or the savage recklessness of ourselves as Englishmen.
Secure from actual warfare, we have loved
Its ghastlier workings (famine or blue plague,
The best amusement for our morning's meal!
And all our dainty terms for fratricide;
Terms which we trundle smoothly o'er our tongues
As if the soldier died without a wound;
As if the fibres of this god-like frame
Passed off to heaven, translated and not killed;
This is the aspect of the Christian world in its most polished and enlightened quarter:-there surely is some need of serious inquiry; there must surely be some monstrous practical delusion here, that wants. honestly encountering, and boldly dispersing.
But if such is the internal condition of Christian Europe, what is the phasis that it presents to the rest of the world? With the exception of our own tribes, now numerously scattered over almost every region of the earth, all are in our estimation barbarians. We pride ourselves on our superior knowledge, our superior refinement, our higher virtues, our nobler character. We talk of the heathen, the savage, and the cruel, and the wily tribes, that fill the rest of the earth; but how is it that these tribes know us? Chiefly by the very features that we attribute exclusively to them. They know us chiefly by our crimes and our cruelty. It is we who are, and must appear to them the savages. What, indeed, are civilization and Christianity? The refinement and ennoblement of our nature! The habitual feeling and the habitual practice of an enlightened justice, of delicacy and decorum, of generosity and affection to our fellow men. There is not one of these qualities that we have not violated for ever, and on almost all occasions,
towards every single tribe with which we have come in contact. We have professed, indeed, to teach Christianity to them; but we had it not to teach, and we have carried them instead, all the curses and the horrors of a demon race. If the reign of Satan, in fact, were come,-if he were let loose with all his legions, to plague the earth for a thousand years, what would be the characteristics of his prevalence? Terrors and crimes; one wide pestilence of vice and obscenity; one fearful torrent of cruelty and wrath, deceit and oppression, vengeance and malignity; the passions of the strong would be inflamed-the weak would cry and implore in vain!
And is not that the very reign of spurious Christianity which has lasted now for these thousand years, and that during the last three hundred, has spread with discovery round the whole earth, and made the name of Christian synonymous with fiend? It is shocking that the divine and beneficent religion of Christ should thus have been libelled by base pretenders, and made to stink in the nostrils of all people to whom it ought, and would, have come as the opening of heaven; but it is a fact no less awful than true, that the European nations, while professing Christianity, have made it odious to the heathen. They have branded it by their actions as something breathed up, full of curses and cruelties, from the infernal regions. On them lies the guilt, the stupendous guilt of having checked the gospel in its career, and brought it to a full stop in its triumphant progress through the nations. They have done this, and then wondered at their deed! They have visited every coast in the shape of rapacious and unprincipled monsters, and then cursed the