Lectures on Ecclesiastical History, Vol. 2 of 2: Including the Origin and Progress of the English Reformation from Wickliffe to the Great Rebellion (Classic Reprint)

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Lectures on Ecclesiastical History, Vol. 2 of 2: Including the Origin and Progress of the English Reformation from Wickliffe to the Great Rebellion (Classic Reprint) Details

Excerpt from Lectures on Ecclesiastical History, Vol. 2 of 2: Including the Origin and Progress of the English Reformation From Wickliffe to the Great Rebellion

Gentlemen, - I alluded, at the close Of my last lecture, to the ambitious spirit which at a very early period began to characterise the Roman Prelates. That spirit was the natural temper Of the race, finding a new development for itself in the circumstances Of the Christian Church.

Infidel writers have [been fond Of reckoning Christianity among the causes Of the downfall Of the Old Roman Empire. I do not think that such an imputation is just, though perhaps it would not be very scandalous to our religion if it were. But in truth, the Roman Empire was irrecoverably doomed to destruction long before Christianity arose, and whether Christianity had arisen or not, Rome must have perished under the action Of the same inuences as did in fact work her ruin. Christianity was so far from destroying what was great and manly in the Old Roman character, that, on the contrary, it revived that character and opened a fresh field for the exercise Of its energies.

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