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as bad fruit betrays a bad tree, so ridiculous and obscene words, a ridiculous and obscene mind. For as Clemens adds (ibid) a man's discourse is the fruit of his mind.
3. Because it is opposed to the sacred profession of a Christian. Hence says the Apostle, Ephes. v. 3, 4, But fornication and all uncleanness or covetousness, let it not be once named among you as becometh saints. An evil word, says Lactantius, proceeds not from the mouth of him who cultivates chaste language. This has reference to all Christians, but especially to those who are ministers of the word. Thou hast consecrated thy mouth to the Gospel : it is unlawful to open it for such things; sacrilege to accustom it to them, says Bernard. Whence that Canon of the Council of Carthage cited by Gratian, which runs, We are of opinion that a minister who plays the buffoon and foul-mouthed jester should be stript of his office. For foolish sayings in the mouth of a Priest is blasphemy, says Bernard, De consid. ad Eugen. lib. 2.
4. Because they corrupt both the speakers and the hearers. Clemens, Pædag. 2, cap. 6, truly and eloquently says, that which is disorderly in words, will engender the practice of indecency also in deeds ; but to be modest in what we say is to keep and preserve ourselves from lewdness. Now as to what belongs to the hearers; we have Chrysostom's just remark, As dust and mud make the ears of the flesh unclean, so does obscene and filthy communication the hearing of the mind. We shall conclude with that saying of our Saviour, Matt. xii. 36, But I say unto you, that for every idle word men shall speak, they shall give an account thereof at the day of judgment. If, then, an idle word will receive the condemnation of a rigorous judge, how much more a foul or injurious one? Think then how worthy of condemnation he is, who does not refrain from malice, when those words are punishable which werely are wanting in utility. Thus reasons Gregory, Dial. lib. 3. Let us, then, put away from our mouths all malice and evil speaking, or filthy communication, as what defiles us with its foulness.
We may add to what hath been said, 1. Those who among their friends are accustomed to
use filthy communication as a kind of savour to their discourse, act like Commodus, who (according to Lampridius) for the sake of a joke, had human fæces mixed with the most exquisite dishes.
2. Pious men should not quietly submit to impure conversation ; for as Athanasius says with truth, a modest and pious man would bear to have stones thrown at him with greater patience than to hear obscene words.
Vers. 9. Lie not one to another, sceing that ye have put
off the old man with his deeds ; 10. And have put on the new man, which is renewed in
knowledge after the image of him that created him.
We are now come to the last sin of the mouth, which the Apostle here persuades us to put off, namely, lying : which they are often found to be guilty of, who are most indignant when it is laid to their own charge; foolish and ridiculous people, who, while they allow themselves the liberty of sinning, would take from others that of blaming it. But let us come to the point, and inquire,
1. What lying is, and how many sorts of it there are.
I approve the definition of Augustine, De mendacio ad Consent. cap. 4. He says, It is the voluntary setting forth of what is false, with the intention of deceiving. To this Durandus (lib. 3. dist. 38. qu. 1) agrees, and the rest of the Schoolmen. Aquinas, Q. 2, qu. 110, art. 1, has this passage: If the following three circumstances concur, that what is uttered be false, that it was wished to announce a falsehood; and, moreover, that it was the intention to deceive ; then it has the qualities of a lie complete: for it is false both materially and formally. So Ales, part 2. qu. 122. memb. 1, The false meaning of a word is as the material in a lie : the completion, or formal property of it is the intention of deceiving. The most received division of falsehoods is that taken
from their diverse objects : For one is called pernicious ; another, officious; and another, jocose. The first is employed for the sake of injury; the second, for that of assistance; the third, for diversion.
2. We shall inquire if any of these be lawful, and without sin before God.
First, the Scripture itself denies it. Thus Revel. xxi. 8, Fornicators, idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone. And, xxii, 15, Without are dogs, and whosoever loveth and maketh a lie. In Prov. xii. 22, Lying lips are an abomination to the Lord. Ephes. iv. 25, Wherefore putting away lying, speak every man truth with his neighbour. Secondly, Right reason denies it. For what is in itself evil in its nature, (ex genere) can by no means be good and lawful : but every falsehood is in itself evil, since it is an act grounded upon an unlawful matter. Thus Durandus says, lib. 3. dist. 38. qu. I, Language was instituted, not that men might deceive one another by it, but that they should use it to tell their mutual thoughts: it is therefore an unlawful act for one to utter words to signify that which he doth not intend in his mind. Aquinas proves this by the same reasoning, Q. 2. qu. 110, art. 3, Language, says he, is the natural sign of the understanding : it is therefore unnutural and unlawful that any one should signify that by his speech which does not exist in his mind. Hence Aristotle (Eth. 4, cap. 7) concludes that all falsehood is wrong in itself, and to be avoided. Wherefore the most sound of the Fathers held all falsehood to be sin. Augustine, Enchirid. cap. 18, says, Every falsehood is a sin, although he does not sin so greatly who lies with the desire of advising, as he does with that of injuring. And again, in his treatise De mendacio ad Cons. cap. 21, No one is to be brought to everlasting salvation by the aid of a lie. Clemens Alexandrinus, Strom. 7, says, A good man neither on his own account or his neighbour's will lie. Gregory, Moral. 18, cap. 4, on Job xxvii. writes, Every falsehood is sin : for whatever is discordant with truth, disagrees with equity. Neither is the life of any one to be defended by the fallacy of lying, lest he should injure his own soul who endeavours to give life to the
flesh of another. The opinion of Cassian, which he gives in Collat. 17. cap. 17, is therefore to be disregarded, that to ward of any great danger it is as lawful to use falsehood as hellebore.* And, cap. 25, he says, that the Patriarchs had recourse to the protection of a lie in defence of life.t Those
* This refers to the use of Hellebore among the antients, which was constantly exhibited by them to control the paroxysms and abate the symptoms of the more formidable and dangerous diseases, particularly madness.
t Cassian, to whom these two sentiments are attributed, was a Monk of the fifth Century, a native of Scythia, but educated in the Monastery of Bethlehem ; who afterwards wandered through Egypt and Thebais with another Monk of the name of Germanus, for the sake of conferring with meu of similar inclinations. He was at length ordained by Chrysoston, and settled at Marseilles, where he founded two Monasteries, one for men and another for virgins. He composed a code of Instructions for Monks, with the pieces above-mentionell, entitled “ Collationes," or the subject of his conferences with others on the principles of Monachism, principally derived from the discipline and manners which prevailed among the Syriana and Egyptian Monks. He engaged in the controversy against Nestorius respecting the union of the two natures in Christ. The conclusion of his appeal to Nestorius as given by Du Pin, is remarkable. He says, adverting to the orthodox faith respecting the Person of Christ, “ "Tis the faith “ of this Creed which hath given you admittance to Baptism ; 'tis by that " that you have been regenerated; 'lis by this faith that you have received “ the Eucharist and the Lord's Supper. Lastly, I speak it with a sorrow, “ 'Tis that which hath raised you to the holy Ministry, to be a Deacon and “ Priest, and made you capable of the Episcopal Dignity. What have “ you done ? Into what a sad condition have you cast yourself? By los" ing the faith of the Creed you have lost all; the Sacraments of your " Priesthood and Episcopacy are grounded upon the truth of the Creed. 6 One of these two things you must do; either you must confess, That “ he is God that is born of a Virgin, and so detest your error; or, if you « will not make such a Confession, you must renounce your Priesthood; " there is no middle way. If you have been orthodox, you are now an “ apostate ; and if you are at present orthodox, how can you be a Deacon, • Priest, or Bishop ? Why were you so long in an error ? Why did you 6 stay so long without contradicting others ?” Thus we see how a denial of the supreme Divinity of the Lord that bought us was regarıled in those days. On the doctrine of grace, however, and the strength of Free-will, as developed in his Collationes, Prosper considered Cassian himself greatly in error, and opposed his sentiments. It would seem, indeed, as Mosheim intimates, that in this respect he was a Semi.pelagian. His sentiments cited by our Expositor, would, moreover, certainly lead to such doctrines as have since been the disgrace of his Church, the occasion of many evils, and a hindrance to Religion in the world ; and when we find them applaud.
who are of this opinion have not God, but Plato, for the author of such licentiousness : for he, in 3, De repub. says, Falsehood is sometimes useful to men, as a medicine is : wherefore it is to be allowed to the public Physicians; but to be meddled with as little as possible by private people. So much for Plato; who is, however, less indulgent to this sin of lying than Cassian. Jerome fastens this error upon Origen, lib. 1, Apolog, adv. Ruffin, where he writes, the disciples of Origen are united among themselves by the insane mysteries of lies; Origenistas inter se orgiis mendaciorum fæderari.* But to all these errors we oppose those things which we have already adduced, and especially that admonition of the Apostle, Rom. iii. 8, that we are not to do evil that good may соте.
3. Let us inquire whether parabolic and figurative expressions deserve the name of lying. For example, suppose one to say that a Heretic is a wolf; or should any one recite a parable, as that in Judges ix. 8, of the trees choosing to themselves a king, and many other such which occur in the Scriptures.
ed as they were by many subsequent heads of Orders, one cannot wonder at that Jesuitry—that sophistry and guile, which has since distinguished the Roman church, and is now clothing Romanism in a garb to suit modern sentiments and modern liberality.
* This great man, Origen, following as he did the principles of the Pla. tonic philosophy, and imagining that the nature and extent of the reason of all doctrines of Religion might be found in it, and engaging a number of disciples, may be stated to have been the head of such speculative notions, and the mysticism they gave rise to. For from his disciples emanated in time the Philosophic or Scholastic theology, remarkable mostly for such absurdities. Vide Mosheim, under the notices of Origen.-As to what was just before remarked, as alleged in favour of the monstrosity so insidiously maintained, Cecil has well observed, that " the instances of artifice which “ occur in Scripture are not to be imitated, but avoided : if Abraham, or “ Isaac, or Jacob equivocate in order to obtain their ends, this is no war. “ rant to me to do so : David's falsehood concerning Goliath's sword argued 66 distrust of God. If any part of the truth which I am bound to commu. “ nicate be concealed, this is sinful artifice : the Jesuits in China, in order 66 to remove the offence of the Cross, declared that it was a falsehood in66 vented by the Jews that Christ was crucified ; but they were expelled “ from the empire: and this was designed, perhaps, to be held up as a “ warning to all Missionaries, that no good end is to be carried by artifice." Vide Cecil's Remains, p. 34), 8vo, edition.