Grantley McDonald - Anxiety Attacks and Psycho-babble

Steven Avery

RGA - p. 8
Antitrinitarianism is invariably associated with its most famous ancient
proponent, Arius. In his important monograph on Arius (1987), Rowan Williams
showed how troublesome the concept of Arianism is in late antiquity; it is
scarcely less difficult to define in the early modem period, but for the moment it
is enough to equate it with a questioning of the traditional Catholic doctrine of
the Trinity, though it was also used as a portmanteau term for heterodoxy of
almost any form. From the mid-sixteenth century until the late seventeenth,
Antitrinitarianism was a particularly hot issue in Poland and Germany, as
controversialists associated with the Socinian church published tracts intended to
put an axe to the root of Christianity: the doctrine of the Trinity. The persecution
and final expulsion of the Socinians from Poland saw many end up in England
during the Civil War, and in the Netherlands. Many English churchmen, both
Anglican and Puritan, feared that Socinianism would promote a laxity of doctrine
which would lead inexorably to a chic liberalism and even worse. John Edwards
(1695) asserted that “in the very Socinian Doctrine it self there seems to be an
Atheistick Tang.”10 Socinianism was also interpreted as a threat to the unity of a
nation recently reunited under a Protestant flag. William Sherlock, dean of St
Paul’s London in 1693, warned that "these Disputes about the Trinity make sport
for Papists.” Should they continue, he admonished, “we shall certainly be
conquered by France”11 On the other hand, many Unitarians (the historical
descendants of the Socinians) resented the fact that they were still liable to
punishment—or at least stigmatisation and social disadvantage—on account of
their beliefs. This sense of disenfranchisement was felt by many other minority
religious groups in Great Britain, most notably Roman Catholics. When
Unitarians began to use the philological advances won by pious critics like John
to advance their own doctrinal angle, the worst fears of conservative
commentators seemed to be realised.

10 Edwards, 1695,64.
11 Sherlock, 1693,23.

BCEME - p. 13
Moreover, Whitby believed that in every case the reading of the textus receptus could be defended. With relief, Whitby cited Mill’s judgement that the comma was the only textual variant in the New Testament that impinges to any appreciable degree on doctrine.408 William Reeves (1709) was less sanguine, fearing that perhaps the various Lections in Dr. Mills's late Edition of the New Testament, will in good time be urged by some Criticks against the Authority of the Gospel Reeves did not have to wait long until his fears were realised. The deist Anthony Collins (1713) rejoiced in Mill’s edition as a useful tool in exposing the ‘Frauds [...] very common in all Books which are publish’d by
Priests or Priestly Men .4I0

408 Whitby 1710, x.
409 Reeves 1709, i:xliii.
410 Collins 1713, 96.

What did Mill actually say?

Whitby, Daniel. Examen Variantium Lectionum Johannis Millii, S. T. P. in Novum Testamentum. London: Bowyer, 1710.

We actually need p. 9
SECUNDO, Varias lectiones quæ morum regulam, aut fidei articulum vel unicum refpiciant, vix ullas effe; quæ fenfum verborum in re momenti alicujus mutent, pauciffimas. Hoc ultro fatetur Millius prol. p. 142. col. 2. his verbis. "In his Codices omnes conveniunt, & fi forte locus aliquis qui fummi momenti effe videtur, uni, alteri, feu etiam quamplurimis codicibus exciderit (id quod non nifi in uno loco factum eft, quod viderim, nempe "1 Joh. 5. 7.) idem tamen quoad fenfum alibi inculcatus occurrit, ut proindè neutiquam indè periclitetur Chriftiana veritas. In hoc nobifcum conveniunt Pontificorum Critici probatiffimi. Ita (a) Ďupinius, effe varias lectiones haud paucas ex editione N. Fœderis Oxonienfi etiam oculis pateat, eas autem omnes parvi fanè momenti effe, & ex parte potiffima vel librariorum vitia, vel minutiffima waegeuala. Idem agnofcit Simonius infrà citandus; fed teftimoniis non eft opus, infpiciat aliquis loca omnia à nobis diligenter collecta, percurrat exempla omnia infigniorum S. Scriptura locorum, à Morino rectè, vel perperam adducta, ex oculari infpectione inveniet ea nec morum regulam ullam, vel fidei articulum ufpiàm refpicere, nedùm labefactare.

SECONDLY, Various readings which refer to a rule of conduct, or an article of faith, or a single one, scarcely any; which change the meaning of words in a matter of any importance, very few. This further admits Millius prol. p. 142. col. 2. in these words. "In these Codexes all agree, and there may be some place which seems to be of great importance, to one, to another, even to several Codexes, (that which was not done in one place, which I have seen, namely" 1 Jn. 5. 7. ) the same thing, however, as regards the fenfum, is met with elsewhere inculcated, so that from this point the truth of Christianity is in no way endangered. In this we agree the most approved critics of the Pontiffs. Thus (a) Ďupinius, indeed, not a few different readings from the edition of N. Fœderis Oxonienfi are also open to the eyes, but they are all of little fanè importance, and on the most part either the faults of the librarians, or the most minute waegeual. The same is acknowledged by Simonius, to be quoted below; there is no need for tefimonies, let someone inspect all the places carefully collected by us, run through all the examples of the impressive passages of the Holy Scriptures, rightly or wrongly brought to Morino, he will find them by ocular inspection, and not to reshape, let alone undermine, any rule of conduct, or any article of faith .


Using Google text rather than OCR, which might be better
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