VIEWS FROM THE TOWER.
IT is not at all improbable that the killing of missionaries in China may lead to a Chinese war in which Great Britain will take a hand, and that event might be considered by Japan opportune for a resistance of Russian interference, and the result might be another war. Such conditions would bring increased prosperity to the United States and Europe for three or four years, supplying munitions of war, etc., and this would put off the financial pressure and great time of trouble a little while. Then the awakening and opening up of China would put her millions of cunning imitators into competition with the mechanics of civilized lands and ultimately make the pressure upon labor all the heavier.
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Meantime a great reaction is taking place both in England and France, against radical socialism and in favor of conservatism, as shown by recent elections. Not for a long time before has the majority in the English House of Commons been of the Tory party.
But the reaction is less than it seems on its face to be: in fact, the Tory party has abandoned its old lines, and while retaining its old name it is really a "moderate" party in every sense. And so long as financial conditions are at all bearable the majority of the people in all civilized lands prefer to have the judgment and management of affairs in the hands of the well educated and well-to-do, rather than risk the untried schemes of political novices. We may reasonably expect, therefore, that we will see comparative quiet and prosperity for the next few years, to be followed by a greater depression and a socialistic reaction.
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In the United States, as well as in Great Britain, the growing tendency in religious circles is to ignore doctrines and to make morality and conservatism the tests of fellowship. In both countries there is an increasing tendency to unite for the "purifying of politics," on the "liquor question," etc. For instance, take the following clipped from the daily press:
"METHODISTS IN POLITICS.
"Cleveland, O., Aug. 22.--An important circular signed by every presiding elder of the Methodist church in Ohio has been sent to the members of that denomination throughout the state. It calls for united political action on the part of all Methodists in an effort to elect to the next legislature as many members as possible who will fight the saloons. The circular states that 'special services' will be called for by the elders in this connection in every Methodist church in Ohio."
"SOMETHING NEW UNDER THE SUN.
"At Ayer yesterday thirty-one clergymen, representing six denominations, Baptist, Congregationalist, Roman Catholic, German Evangelical, Unitarian and Universalist, organized a ministerial union to be known as the United Religious Association, the object of which is 'fellowship and acquaintance with each other's religious doctrines, local cooperation with each other on the basis of love to God and man, and to the furtherance of all social reforms and the bringing in of the kingdom of God.' Rev. P. A. McKenna, of the Catholic church at Marlboro, said that he was present with the willing consent of Vicar General Byrne, in the absence of the archbishop, and expressed the most cordial interest in the objects of the association. He was especially emphatic in his Americanism and was heartily applauded by his Protestant associates."
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It is remarkable that at a time when the so-called "higher critics" and "advanced religious thinkers" are tearing in pieces the Scriptures and discarding the very foundation of all Christian faith, the great sin-offering given by our Redeemer for the sins of the world, we find some defenders of the Bible and the true faith where we [R1858 : page 200] might not have thought to look for them. The following is a portion of a letter written not long since by Rev. Morgan Dix, D.D., pastor of Trinity Church, New York, to Rev. C. Gauss of the Prof. Epis. Theol. Seminary near Alexandria, Va., and published by the latter's consent in the N.Y. Tribune, as follows:--
"The recent startling appearance of pantheistic teachers in our Church in the person of liberal theologians so-called, the open denial of several of the facts stated in the creed, the contemptuous repudiation of the authority of our Church, the substitution of ideas derived from the philosophy of evolution for the doctrine of the Gospel as the Church has received the same, and the avowed determination to throw the ordination vow to the winds, and freely to proclaim whatever views the individual minister may evolve from year to year, and from day to day, out of his own consciousness--these signs of the hour increase my respect for the men of the old school, who hold, simply and sincerely, the inspiration of the sacred Scriptures, the destructive properties of sin, the need of atonement for sin through the precious blood of Jesus Christ, and the power of divine grace as the sole agency which can put health and strength into the enfeebled and corrupted nature of men. Thus am I, like many others of my own school, in stronger sympathy with the men at Alexandria than they perhaps suspect; believing that we are fighting the same battle for God in Christ against a world fallen and out of Christ, and that we are aiming substantially at one and the same end. It looks as if society was preparing to rise up in general revolt against the Gospel as we have learned it from the Apostles of Jesus Christ, and the Church which he has made the witness and keeper of his revelation. If it does, so much the worse for society. I am very truly yours, MORGAN DIX"
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The present Pope is pushing forward to regain as much ground as possible.
Some fifteen years ago Chile found that the Jesuits were its worst foes and put an end to clerical interference in politics, etc., although the population and government are overwhelmingly Roman Catholic. But the present pope has smoothed out the difficulty and gotten government and people to forget the injury previously inflicted and to return into sympathy with the Papal authorities. Chile has sent an Ambassador Extraordinary to Rome and in every way is prepared to forget the past and return gradually to a condition as bad as before, or worse.
Effort is being made to have Mexico, whose experience was similar, also to return to the evil control of Papacy. It is the constant scheme at Rome to get back the absolute control of the people formerly held by the Papal clergy. A movement is on foot to have the Mexican government consent to the coming of a Papal Nuncio, with powers similar to those of Mgr. Satolli in the United States.
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The effort to capture Great Britain for Rome is meeting [R1859 : page 200] with considerable opposition. Writing against the union of the Church of England with the Church of Rome the Dean of Canterbury says:
"Great as is the evil of division, let us be sure that it is incomparably less than that of such a spurious, hollow, artificial unity as is held out by the See of Rome, unity purchased by the subjection of reason and conscience to the arbitrary decrees of a self-styled infallible human authority."
With a view to extending the Catholic movement in England the Pope has just canonized as saints the following Englishmen, Hugo Farrington, Richard Whiting, John Beck and Adrian Fortesque, martyrs.
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The eight thousand members of the St. Adelbert Roman Catholic Church of Buffalo, N.Y., who have rebelled against the arbitrary rules of the bishop, have decided to secede and organize as an Independent Catholic Church. We learn that these are in sympathy, at least in harmony, with the Polish seceders at Cleveland, mentioned some time since.
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A Madrid cablegram of Aug. 18 tells that as the Spanish troops were embarking for the reinforcement of the army in Cuba, the Archbishop declared that the Pope like a new Moses had raised his hands toward heaven and was praying that the Angel of Victory might accompany the Spanish army.
We are well aware that the Pope's prayers are usually with the oppressors in every clime; but in the days of Pope Leo IX. it became proverbial that people and ships which he blessed usually met with disaster.
Ah, how much the world needs the real Pope, the real Anointed One, our Lord Jesus, with the true Church, the Royal Priesthood, to take control of the world as the promised priest after the order of Melchizedek--a priest upon his throne. "Thy Kingdom come! Thy will be done on earth as in heaven."