Front Page Titles (by Subject) §61 - The Divine Feudal Law: Or, Covenants with Mankind, Represented
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§61 - Samuel von Pufendorf, The Divine Feudal Law: Or, Covenants with Mankind, Represented 
The Divine Feudal Law: Or, Covenants with Mankind, Represented, trans. Theophilus Dorrington, ed. with an Introduction by Simone Zurbruchen (Indianapolis: Liberty Fund, 2002).
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Of the Controversies among the Protestants.It remains that we suggest some things concerning the Controversies which are maintain’d between the two great Bodies of the Protestants, and that we give our Opinion, whether or no any Temperament may be found out whereby they may be compos’d. Which, yet, not only contains our private Speculation, but also is what we shall not obstinately adhere to; and we publish our Thoughts about this Matter for this End alone, that hereby an Occasion may be offer’d to others to inquire more carefully into this Matter. Whence I would not have the things which I shall propose to create any Prejudice against my self, or the Church in which I was born, and have been Educated, and in the Doctrine of which I have design’d to persevere to the end of my Life. Neither yet am I influenced by any Hatred against the Reform’d Church, to which three most Gracious Lords whom I have serv’d have been addicted. The most Serene Electors of the Roman Empire, Charles Lewis Palatine, and Frederick William, and Frederick the 3d. of Brandenburg: And no less have I made use of the Friendship, Favour, and good Offices of many of that Religion. But what I endeavour here, proceeds only from a Concern for Truth, and the Publick Good, when, therefore, in the foregoing Age from a very small Occasion, as it appear’d at first, the Corruptions of the Romish Religion were brought to light, a great part of Europe fell, as by an Instinct to reject these, and having cast off the Yoke of the Pope of Rome to Reform Religion to its Primitive Purity, according to the Holy Scriptures: But because that Affair was undertaken in divers places by several Men, and not by Compact or Agreement: It so happen’d, that the same Rites were not every where Retain’d, which yet add nothing to the Substance of Religion, nor was there a Consent to the same Confession of Faith Compos’d by a Common Agreement. And there having been an early Dissention about some Points, between Luther, who made the beginning of Reforming in Saxony, and Zwinglius, who a little while after fell upon doing it among the Helvetians, and the Doctrine of the former being propagated through Germany and the Northern Tracts, and that of the Latter among the Helvetians, the Belgick Provinces, England and France, those Dissentions were spread among the Followers of both, and hindred them from ever joining in one Communion: Which thing was no small Obstacle to the Progress of the Reformation, the common Enemies taking occasion thence to exclaim against the Hereticks, as they falsly call them, and to say they were acted by the Spirit of Confusion, and they knew not what to believe, or not to believe. But especially did that Division cause great Mischiefs through all Germany. For when all that, so far as it shook off the Pope’s Yoke, professed the Principles of Luther, express’d in the Augustan Confession,40 and at length obtain’d the publick Peace and Liberty for them: After this, they began to creep in amongst them who would needs spread about the Principles of Zwinglius and Calvin, and did here and there prevail, that the ancient Rites which were tolerated by Luther, should be abrogated, and introduc’d a Reform’d Doctrine according to their mind amongst them: At this the Papists began to quarrel, and to say, the Peace of Religion did belong only to them who profess’d the Doctrine exhibited in the Augustan Confession, and therefore these new Men were not to be tolerated in Germany. From thence there began to be sharp Disputes among the Divines, the Lutherans condemning the Reform’d as erroneous, and the Reform’d arguing that they also were comprehended under the Augustan Confession, and ought to be partakers of the Priviledges then obtain’d. The Lutheran Princes urg’d, that altho’ it was not to be denied but these Men dissented from them in some things, yet they should not be excluded from the Publick Peace, especially since there might be some hope that they might forsake their Errours, and return to their former Communion. But when the Papists cherish’d this Discord, and flatter’d the Lutherans that they might forsake the Reform’d, and then when these were oppress’d, they also might the more easily be reduced into their Order: The Reform’d began to provide for their Security by Leagues, and fell into several Counsels, which gave Matter for a horrid Civil War; after that, the chief of the Reform’d Party, the Elector Palatine accepted of the Crown of Bohemia. Which Endeavours succeeded so ill, that the whole Protestant Cause was in imminent Danger, had not the Providence of God immediately interposed to restore it. For altho’ by the Peace of Osnabrug,41 the Reform’d had an equal liberty of Religion confirm’d to them with the others, yet without doubt it had conduc’d very much to the establishment of the Affairs of both if the Dissention between them could, saving the Divine Truth, have been utterly taken away. In that Dispute the Reform’d condemn the Lutheran Divines as guilty of too much Sharpness, and of Rashness and Rigour in condemning them. The Lutherans on the other side aggravate the Errours of the Reform’d, and load them with odious Consequences: And charge them with acting insidiously, and unsincerely, and that they soften hard Expressions, and cover their Principles with specious Colours, and make show of an Opinion agreeing in words with them, and all the while, that they have secret Reserves to themselves, and cherish still in their minds their old Opinions. And altho’ the Reform’d frequently use the Name of Brethren, yet they omit not to impute to the Lutheran’s monstrous Opinions, how much soever they contradict them, and where ever they prevail, they oppress them either openly or by oblique Arts and Methods, and extend as much as is possible their own Bounds by the diminution of those of the others: When they should rather endeavour to deserve that Applause, which would be given by all Men to those who can gain any Advantages against the Common Enemy. Nor is it worth while, say they, to receive the Rites of the Reform’d into the place of those of the Lutherans: Because, whatever of good there is among the Reform’d, that they have in common with the Lutherans; and what they have that is peculiar to them, conduces nothing towards a solid Piety; and it is so candied over, and adorn’d with specious Interpretations, that they themselves do even seem to be asham’d of it. I am not willing to excuse or reprove any of these things on either side, since the first Rule to be observ’d by those who would promote Peace and Concord, is to commit to oblivion the things that are past. These things therefore being dismiss’d, we shall come to the Controversies themselves.
[40.]See note 14.
[41.]The treaty of Osnabrück, between the German empire and the Protestant states, along with the treaty in Münster between the empire and France, made up the Peace of Westphalia (1648), the general settlement ending the Thirty Years’ War.