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“Get thee behind me, SATAN” (Jesus to Peter). — Matt. xvi. 23.

“Such a deal of skimble-skamble stuff

As puts me from my faith. I tell you what –

He held me, last night, at least nine hours

In reckoning up the several devils’ names.” — King Henry IV., Part i., Act iii.

“La force terrible et juste qui tue eternellement les  avortons a ete nommee par les

Egyptiens Typhon, par les Hebreux Samael; par les orientaux Satan; et par les Latins

Lucifer. Le Lucifer de la Cabale n’est pas un ange maudit et foudroye; c’est l’ange qui

eclaire et qui regenere en tombant.” — ELIPHAS LEVI: Dogme et Rituel.

“Bad as he is, the Devil may be abus’d,

Be falsely charg’d, and causelessly accus’d,

When Men, unwilling to be blam’d alone,

Shift off those Crimes on Him which are their Own.” — Defoe, 1726.

SEVERAL years ago, a distinguished writer and persecuted kabalist suggested a creed for the Protestant and Roman Catholic bodies, which may be thus formulated:


“I believe in the Devil, the Father Almighty of Evil, the Destroyer of all things, Perturbator of Heaven and Earth;

And in Anti-Christ, his only Son, our Persecutor,

Who was conceived of the Evil Spirit;

Born of a sacrilegious, foolish Virgin;

Was glorified by mankind, reigned over them,

And ascended to the throne of Almighty God,

From which he crowds Him aside, and from which he insults the living and the dead;

I believe in the Spirit of Evil;

The Synagogue of Satan;

The coalition of the wicked;

The perdition of the body;

And the Death and Hell everlasting. Amen.” Does this offend? Does it seem extravagant, cruel, blasphemous? Listen. In the city of New York, on the ninth day of April, 1877 — that is to say, in the last quarter of what is proudly styled the century of discovery and the age of illumination — the following scandalous ideas were broached. We quote from the report in the Sun of the following morning:

“The Baptist preachers met yesterday in the Mariners’ Chapel, in

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Oliver Street. Several foreign missionaries were present. The Rev. John W. Sarles, of Brooklyn, read an essay, in which he maintained the proposition that all adult heathen, dying without the knowledge of the Gospel, are damned eternally. Otherwise, the reverend essayist argued, the Gospel is a curse instead of a blessing, the men who crucified Christ served him right, and the whole structure of revealed religion tumbles to the ground.

“Brother Stoddard, a missionary from India, indorsed the views of the Brooklyn pastor. The Hindus were great sinners. One day, after he had preached in the market place, a Brahman got up and said: ‘We Hindus beat the world in lying, but this man beats us. How can he say that God loves us? Look at the poisonous serpents, tigers, lions, and all kinds of dangerous animals around us. If God loves us, why doesn’t He take them away?’

“The Rev. Mr. Pixley, of Hamilton, N. Y., heartily subscribed to the doctrine of Brother Sarles’s essay, and asked for $5,000 to fit out young men for the ministry.”

And these men — we will not say teach the doctrine of Jesus, for that would be to insult his memory, but — are paid to teach his doctrine! Can we wonder that intelligent persons prefer annihilation to a faith encumbered by such a monstrous doctrine? We doubt whether any respectable Brahman would have confessed to the vice of lying — an art cultivated only in those portions of British India where the most Christians are found.

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But we challenge any honest man in the wide world to say whether he thinks the Brahman was far from the truth in saying of the missionary Stoddard, “this man beats us all” in lying. What else would he say, if the latter preached to them the doctrine of eternal damnation, because, indeed, they had passed their lives without reading a Jewish book of which they never heard, or asked salvation of a Christ whose existence they never suspected! But Baptist clergymen who need a few thousand dollars must devise terrifying sensations to fire the congregational heart.

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