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CHAP XVIII.

The only Cases in which Non-TOLERATION

: makes Part of the Human Law.

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OR a government not to have a right

puniíh men for their errors, it is necera sary that those errors should not be crimes; and they are crimes only when they disturb the public tranquility ; which they do whenever they infpire enthusiasm: it is neceflary therefore that that men should begin by laying aside enthufiasm, in order to deserve toleration.

If a nuniber of young Jesuits, knowing that the church holds all reprobates and heretics in detestation, and that the opinion of the Jansenists having been condemned by a bull, this fect is consequently reprobate ; thereupon go and set fire to the house of the fathers of the oratory, because Quesnęl one of that body was a Jansenist; it is clear, that the government would be obliged to punish those Jesuits.

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In like manner, if these latter have been found to teach the most reprehensible doctrines, and if their institution appears contrary to the laws of the kingdom, it becomes necessary to abolish their society, and of Jesuits to make them useful citizens': which, in fact, so far from being an oppremion upon them, as has been pretended, is a real good done them'; for where is the great oppression of being obliged to wear a fhört coat instead of a long gown, or to be free instead of being a stave? In tiine of peace, whole regiments are broke without complaining ; why then should the Jesuits make such an outcry, when they are broke for the Take of peace?

Were the Franciscans in a transport of holy zeal for the Virgin Mary, to go and pull down the church of the Dominicans, who hold Mary to have been born in original fin, the government would then be obliged to treat the Franciscans much in the same manner it has done the Jesuits.

The same argument will hold good with regard to the Lutherans and Calvinists ; for let them say, if they please, we follow the dictates of our consciences, it is more profitable 5

to

to obey God than man; we are the only true flock, and therefore ought to cut off all the wolves. It is evident that in this case they themselves are the wolves.

One of the most astonishing examples of enthusiasm, was in a little fect of Denmark, founded on one of the best principles in the world; for these people endeavoured to procure the eternal happiness of all their brethren : but the consequences of this principle were very singum lar. As they believed that all the young children who died without baptism were damned, and that those who had the happiness to die immediately after the receiving that sacrament, enter into eternal happiness, they went forth and murdered all the young children of both sexes lately baptized whom they could meet with ; by this action, they doubtless procured the little innocents the greatest of all felicity, by preserving them at once from sin, the miseries of this life, and hell, and sending them infallibly to heaven. But these people, in the excess of their charitable zeal, did not consider that it is forbidden to do evil that good may come thereof; that they had no right over the lives of these infants ; that the greatest part of fa

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thers and mothers are so carnal, as to desire rather to keep their children about them, than to see their throats cut, though it was to send them to heaven ; and lastly, that it is the duty of the magistrate to punish murder, though committed with a good intent.

It should seem that the Jews had the greatest right of any persons to rob and murder us : for although the Old Testament abounds with examples of toleration and indulgence, yet are there several instances of the contrary, and some very severe laws. God did at times command his people to kill all idolaters, reserving only the young women fit for the nuptial state: they look upon us as idolaters; and notwithstanding that we at present tolerate them, they might certainly, had they the power in their hands, cut us all off, excepting our young women.

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Moreover, they would be under an indispensable obligation to exterminate the whole Turkish race ; this speaks itself; for the Turks are at present in poffeffion of the countries of the Hittites, the Jebusites, the Amorites, the Girgashites, &c. &c. All which people were laid under a curse, and all their

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country, which was about five and twenty leagues in extent, was given to the Jews by fea ral successive covenants; consequently they ought to resume poffeffion of their own, which the Turks have usurped from them for upwards of a thousand years. But if the Jews were to reason in this manner now-a-days, it is pretty certain we should make them no other answer, but by impaling them alive.

These are the only cases in which persecution

appears reasonable.

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