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Good lise be now my talk : my doubts are done:
What more could fright my faith, than three in one ?
Can I believe eternal God could lic
Disguis'd in mortal mold and infancy?
That the great Maker of the world could die?
And after that trust my imperfect sense,
Which calls in question his omnipotence ?
Can I my
And shall my sight, and touch, and taste, rebel ?
Superior faculties are set aside ;
Shall their subfervient organs be my guide ?
Then let the moon usurp the rule of day,
And winking tapers fhew the sun his way ;
For what my senses can themselves perceive,
I need no revelation to believe.
Can they who say the host Mould be descry'd
By sense, define a body glorify'd ?
Impaffable, and penetrating parts?
Let thein declare by what mysterious arts
He shot that body through th' opposing might
Of bolts and bars impervious to the light,
And stood before his train confess’d in open fight.
For since thus wondrously he pals d, 'tis plain,
One single place two bodies did contain.
And sure the same on:nipotence as well
Can make one body in more places dwell.
Let reason then at her own quarry fly,
But how can finite grasp infinity?
'Tis urg'd again, that faith did first commence By miracles, which are appeals to fense,
And thence concluded, that our sense must be
The motive still of credibility.
For latter ages must on former wait,
And what began belief must propagate.
But winnow well this thought, and you shall find
'Tis light as chaff that flies before the wind.
Were all those wonders wrought by power divine,
As means or ends of some more deep design?
Most fure as means, whose end was this alone,
To prove the Godhead of th' eternal Son.
God thus asserted, man is to believe
Beyond what sense and reason can conceive,
And for mysterious things of faith rely
On the proponent, heaven's authority.
If then our faith we for our guide admit,
Vain is the farther search of human wit,
As when the building gains a surer stay,
We take th' unuseful scaffolding away.
Reason by sense no more can understand;
game is play'd into another hand.
Why chuse we then like bilanders to creep
Along the coast, and land in view to keep,
When safely we may launch into the deep?
In the same vefiel which our Saviour bore,
Himself the pilot, let us leave the shore,
And with a better guide a better world explore.
Could he his Godhead veil with flesh and blood,
And not veil these again to be our food ?
in both is equal in extent,
The first affords us life, the second nourishment.
And if he can, why all this frantic pain
To construe what his clearest words contain,
And make a riddle what he made so plain ?
To take up half on trust, and half to try,
Name it not faith, but bungling bigotry.
Both knave and fool the merchant we may call,
To pay great sums, and to compound the small :
For who would break with heaven, and would not
break for all ?
Rest then, my soul, from endless anguish freed :
Nor sciences thy guide, nor sense thy creed.
Faith is the belt ensurer of thy bliss ;
The bank above must fail before the venture miss.
But heaven and heaven-born faith are far from thee,
Thou first apostate to divinity.
Unkennel'd range in thy Polonian plains :
A fiercer foe th’insatiate wolf remains,
Too boastful Britain, please thyself no more,
That beasts of prey are banih'd from thy shore ;
The bear, the boar, and every savage name,
Wild in effect, though in appearance tame,
Lay waste thy woods, destroy thy blissful bower,
And, muzzled though they seem, the mutes devour.
More haughty than the rest, the wolfish race
Appear with belly gaunt, and familh'd face :
Never was so deform’d a beast of grace.
His ragged tail betwixt his legs he wears,
Clofe clap'd for ihame ; but his rough crest he rears,
And pricks up his predestinating cars.
His wild disorder'd walk, his haggard eyes,
Did all the bestial citizens surprize.
Though fear’d and hated, yet he rul’d a while,
As captain or companion of the spoil.
Full many a year his hateful head had been
For tribute paid, nor since in Cambria seen :
The last of all the litter fcap'd by chance,
And from Geneva first infested France.
Some authors thus his pedigree will trace,
But others write him of an upstart race;
Because of Wickliff's brood no mark he brings,
But his innate antipathy to kings.
These last deduce him from th' Helvetian kind,
Who near the Leman-lake his confort lin'd:
That fiery Zuinglius first th'affection bred,
And meagre Calvin blest the nuptial bed.
In Ifrael fome believe hin whelp'd long since,
When the proud sanhedriin oppress’d the prince,
Or, since he will be Jew, derive him higher,
When Corah with his brethren did conspire
From Moses' hand the sovereign sway to wrest,
And Aaron of his ephod to divest :
Till opening earth made way for all to pass,
And could not bear the burden of a class.
The fox and he came shuffled in the dark,
If ever they were stow'd in Noah's ark :
Perhaps not made ; for all their barking train
The dog (a common species) will contain.
And some wild curs, who from their masters ran,
Abhorring the supremacy of man,
In woods and caves the rebel-race began.
O happy pair, how well have you increas'd!
What ills in church and state have you redress'd ?
With teeth untry'd, and rudiments of claws,
Your first essay was on your native laws :
Those having torn with ease, and trampled down,
Your fangs you fastend on the mitred crown,
And freed from God and monarchy your town.
What though your native kennel still be small,
Bounded betwixt a puddle and a wall;
victorious colonies are sent
Where the north ocean girds the continent.
Quicken’d with fire below, your monsters breed
In fenny Holland, and in fruitful Tweed :
And like the first the last affects to be
Drawn to the dregs of a democracy.
As, where in fields the fairy rounds are seen,
A rank four herbage rises on the
So, springing where those midnight elves advance,
Rebellion prints the footsteps of the dance.
Such are their doctrines, such contempt they show
To heaven above, and to their prince below,
As none but traitors and blafphemers know.
God, like the tyrant of the skies, is plac’d,
And kings, like laves, beneath the crowd debas'd.
So fulsome is their food, that flocks refuse
To bite, and only dogs for physic use.