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human nature are confounded in the person of our blessed Redeemer; and are rather to be classed with the Acephali, whose peculiar merit was-violent opposition to the council. They admit all the sacraments of the Roman catholic church, with the variation only of certain practices in the mode of administration. Some have falsely charged them with errors respecting the blessed Trinity, the origin of human souls, and other articles; and though they have precisely the same faith which the council of Chalcedon proposes for their rule, mere prejudice obliges them rather to suffer death than subscribe to its decrees. They are great fasters; and, in the austerity of their fasts they seem to make a great part of the gospel perfection to consist. Many of them have been known, for a long succession of years, to have eaten nothing during Lent, but the leaves of the olive. Some of their monks live in communities; others in deserts, and others again, like certain ancient saints, on the tops of pillars. Their superiors are themselves subordinate to the bishops. Assemanni in his Oriental Library, t. 2, has given us a list of their most eminent writers, philosophers and theologians; among whom many have attained to excellence. The sect itself-formerly so numerous, is at the present day, very inconsiderable, except in Abyssinia. See the article ABYSSINIANS.
It will not be denied, that in the council of Chalcedon the sessions were attended with some tumult and disorder. But, if the Holy Ghost presided not over its decisions, we should be glad to be informed-how men, infuriated by passion and divided into factions,--all intent upon enforcing their own respective opinions, and devoting their adversaries to damnation, eventually united in condemning the intrigues of party, and in reprobating unanimously the opposite errors of Eutychianism and Nesto. rianism! In this instance, so clearly recognisable are the influences of the Holy Spirit, that any other reply to the impassioned declamations of Basnage and other enemies of the Chalcedonian synod, would be perfectly superfluous.
The council declares that, conformably to the writings of the holy fathers, it professes a belief in one Jesus Christ our Lord, the Son of God; perfect Gode and perfect man; consubstantial with the Father according to the Godhead, and with us men according to the humanity: that in him are two natures--without division, without separation, without change ; for as much as the properties of the two natures subsist and harmonize in one and the same person ;-who is not divided into two, but is one only Jesus Christ the Son of God, as it is declared in the Nicene creed. This formula was approved unanimously by the whole council; in which the church taught-against Nestorius, that in Jesus Christ there was but one person; and against Eutyches, that in the same divine person were united two distinct natures.
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FAMILISTS or FAMILY OF LOVE—the name of a secť which pretended that perfection and religion consisted in charity alone, independently of faith and hope, which they considered as imperfections. This charity, according to them, exalted men above the laws and rendered them incapable of sinning. One Henry Nicolas of Munster was author of the sect. At first he modestly assumed the character of prophet, but soon proclaimed himself to be a person deified. Nor would this suffice; he deemed himself a greater personage than Jesus Christ who, he said, was nothing more than a type or figure of himself. About the year 1540, he attempted to seduce the famous Theodore Volkart, with whom he had many unsuccessful interviews. When Theodore's arguments were like to prove too strong, he appealed to the Spirit which, he said, commanded him to hold his peace.
The enthusiast, notwithstanding, made many silly proselytes, who all like their master were willing to be accounted of divine origin.
Henry composed some books; for instance-those entitled The Gospel of the Kingdom, The Land of Peace, &c. The sect was admitted into our Island of Saints towards the commencement of the seventeenth century, and in 1604 presented to King James a Confession of Faith, in which they declare they do not hold communion with the Brownists, and profess a readiness to obey the magistracy whatever may be their religious principles. George Fox, himself the very fanatic author of Quakerism, inveighed aloud against this Family of Love, and complimented them with the title of Fanatics ; because, said he, they did not scruple to take oaths, to dance, to sing, and to be merry. Serious charges these, and very scandalous to their rivals in fanaticism at the present day!
FIFTH-MONARCHY-MEN-a turbulent sect in the days of Oliver Cromwell. They pretended, that Jesus Christ was on the point of establishing upon earth a fifth monarchy, alluded to by ihe prophet Daniel ; and, with this persuasion, they resolved to overturn the existing government, and to substitute in lieu of it absolute anarchy. (Mosheim, Eccles. Hist.) A striking instance, among so many others equally extravagant-of the dangerous fanaticism produced in England by the unrestricted liberty of reading and interpreting Holy Scripture according to each one's fancy or private spirit.
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FLAGELLANTS-a name given to a kind of penitentialists who pretended, that self-discipline or flagellation remitted sin—equally with baptism. The sect originated in 1260, from one Reinerius at Perusia. This man undertook to preach up penance to the people, and taught them with that view—to use the discipline. In 1349, on occasion of the black pestilence which had desolated Europe, the sect was propagated through Poland, Germany, France, Italy and England. They had crosses in their hands and a cowl upon their head, and went naked to the waist; lashed themselves publicly twice a-day, and once in the nightwith knotted cords stuck with the points of pins; and then fell prostrate on the ground, imploring aloud the Divine Mercy. From this singularity which, doubtless, at first proceeded from a true spirit of penitence, they fell into a gross heresy, affirming that their blood-united with that of Christ in such a manner, as to have the same efficacy ; that after thirty days whipping, they were acquitted from the guilt and punishment of sin, and needed not the sacraments; persuading the deluded multitude that the gospel had ceased';—with other similar impieties. This phrensy continued a long time, notwithstanding the censures of the church, and the edicts of christian princes for its suppression:
In Italy, Spain and Germany, there still exist certain confraternities, in which the discipline is used as an instrument of penance, but which bear no resemblance in any other respect, with the sectaries just mentioned. When this practice is adopted purely through a sincere regret for Having offended Almighty God, and with the desire of appeasing the divine justice, beyond all doubt it is innocent, and, in due circumstances, even commendable: but if performed in public, there is great danger of its degenerating into bare ceremony and hypocrisy, instead of contributing in any degree to the reformation of morals.
FRATRICELLI, or FREROTS-names given indiscriminately to a multitude of sects which inundated Europe in the thirteenth century. These sects fell into the most horrid disorders; renewed the infamies of the Gnostics and the Adamites; pretended that neither Christ himself nor his apostles had observed continence; and that they all had wives of their own, or, what is still more blasphemous, those of other people. Some of these fanatics were not ashamed to maintain, that incest and adultery were no crimes when perpetrated by their fellow sectaries. The greater part, extremely ignorant, imagined the whole perfection of a christian to consist in a state of absolute poverty and men
the profession of which was the distinctive character of the sect. Their original authors were certain refractory Franciscans, who, with the specious plea of practising more perfectly the religious institutes of St Francis, separated from their brethren, and lived an idle vagabond life. John XXII. repro
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bated their pretensions, and fulminated a sentence of excommu-
protestants been induced to adopt these wretched libertines as the predecessors of their reformation. Nor do catholics envy them the honour.
GNOSIMACHI-Sectaries of the seventh age, who reprobated every kind of useful research after knowledge and the sciences, even to the study of the holy scriptures; because, said they, God requires virtuous actions in the faithful, and not science. This conceit was renewed by the Abecedarians.
See their article.
GNOSTICS, or the ILLUMINED—were an impious sect of the first or second
age, divided into various branches; some of which were denominated from their respective authors, Simonians, Valentinians, Basilidians, Carpocratians, Sethians, Nicolaites, Ophites, &c. &c. To these sectarists, St Paul seems to allude in different parts of his epistles. (See, for instance, 1 Tim. c. 6, v. 20.) They believed in two first principles; the one good and the principle of good; the other bad, and the author of evil. They held the human soul to be the very substance of the Divinity; while they denied Christ to be God, although they acknowledged that the Divinity resided in him. They justified the most criminal excesses, and practised them without a blush; defiling their nocturnal assemblies with every species of obscene gratification.
GREEK CHURCH-consists of those christians who still ad. here to the schism first commenced by the ambitious patriarch of Constantinople, Photius; and afterwards renewed in 1053 by the no less ambitious Cerularius, one of his successors in that patriarchate, on pretences equally frivolous and capricious.
Cerularius, and Leo Bishop of Acrida, wrote a joint letter to John bishop of Trani in Apulia, in which they objected against the catholics of the Western or Latin church, that they celebrated the holy eucharist in unleavened bread; fasted on the Saturdays in Lent; scrupled not to eat blood ; omitted the Alleluias during the Lenten term ; and other trivial points of discipline. (See Cerularius's letter, and Sigeb. de Script. c. 349.) Malice must be to the last degree extravagant, to ground a schism and defection from the catholic communion, upon
such trifling exceptions ! St Leo IX. who then sate in St Peter's chair, answered by an exhortation to peace; alleging for these practices of discipline the ancient law and tradition from St Peter, especially for the use of unleavened bread in the eucharist. He dispatched a legate to Constantinople, with a learned and ample apology, composed by himself against the exceptions of the Greeks, in order to preserve them in union with the Latin church; but was not able to overcome the obstinacy of Cerularius, whose influence and intrigues drew the greater part of the Oriental churches into his schism ; in which, barring some short intervals of re-union, they have continued to the present day. Cerularius himself having also, by his factious spirit; embroiled the state, was driven into exile; and closed a criminal and restless life in misery and despair. (See Baronius, Curopallat. Psellus. Zonar. &c.
The Greek church professes, with the exception only of the spiritual supremacy of the pope, and the procession of the Holy Ghost from the Father and the Son,-all the articles of faith maintained by the Latin or the Roman church. (See Petri Arcudii Concordia Eccles. Oriental. et Occidental. Allatius, de Eccles. Occidental. et Oriental. perpetuâ consensione. Censura Oriental. Eccles. de præcipuis nostri sæculi hæreticorum dogmatibus. Perpet. de la Foi, t. 3, l. 9. Ricot. Hist. of the present state of the Greek church, c. 3, p. 91, &c.)
Some protestant theologists of the seventeenth century scrupled not to affirm, that the Greeks exactly coincided in sentiment with themselves in regard of the divers points of controversy between protestants and catholics. The learned authors of the work entitled La Perpetuitè de la Foi de l'Eglise Catholique touchant l’Eucharistie, 5 vol. in-4to, have with much diligence and fidelity collected the various monuments ascertaining the religious creed of the Greek church. Such are, for instance, in the first place—the testimony of the different authors of that communion, who have flourished since the ninth century, when the schism first commenced ; secondly, the professions of faith of many bishops, metropolitans and patriarchs ;-the definitions of two or three synods held expressly for the purpose, and the attestations of several Russian prelates :-and in the third place the liturgies, euchologies and other ecclesiastic records of the