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[ Also see Belief Christ Christ (Saviour) Christianity Churches Death of Christ Faith Life Miracles Opinion Prayer Precepts Principles Redemption Religion Resurrection of Christ Revelation Theology ]

As those wines which flow from the first treading of the grape are sweeter and better than those forced out by the press, which gives them the roughness of the husk and stone, so are those doctrines best and sweetest which flow from a gentle crush of the scriptures and are not wrung into controversies and commonplaces.
      - Francis Bacon

Doctrine is nothing but the skin of truth set up and stuffed.
      - Henry Ward Beecher

Go on your knees before God. Bring all your idols; bring self-will, and pride, and every evil lust before Him, and give them up. Devote yourself, heart and soul, to His will; and see if you do not "know of the doctrine."
      - Henry Ward Beecher

That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive;
  But speaking the truth in love, may grow up into him in all things, which is the head, even Christ:
    From whom the whole body fitly joined together and compacted by that which every joint supplieth, according to the effectual working in the measure of every part, maketh increase of the body unto the edifying of itself in love.
      - Bible, Ephesians (ch. IV, v. 14-16)

For his religion, it was fit
  To match his learning and his wit;
    'Twas Presbyterian true blue;
      For he was of that stubborn crew
        Of errant saints, whom all men grant
          To be the true Church Militant;
            Such as do build their faith upon
              The holy text of pike and gun;
                Decide all controversies by
                  Infallible artillery;
                    And prove their doctrine orthodox,
                      By Apostolic blows and knocks.
      - Samuel Butler (1), Hudibras
         (pt. I, canto I, l. 189)

What makes all doctrines plain and clear?--
  About two hundred pounds a year.
    And that which was prov'd true before
      Prove false again? Two hundred more.
      - Samuel Butler (1), Hudibras
         (pt. III, canto I, l. 1,277)

How absurd to try to make two men think alike on matters of religion, when I cannot make two timepieces agree!
      - Charles V

Every one cleaves to the doctrine he has happened upon, as to a rock against which he has been thrown by tempest.
      - Cicero (Marcus Tullius Cicero) (often called "Tully" for short)

In religion as in politics it so happens that we have less charity for those who believe half our creed, than for those who deny the whole of it.
      - Charles Caleb Colton

O how far remov'd,
  Predestination! is thy foot from such
    As see not the First Cause entire: and ye,
      O mortal men! be wary how ye judge:
        For we, who see the Maker, know not yet
          The number of the chosen; and esteem
            Such scantiness of knowledge our delight:
              For all good is, in that primal good,
                Concentrate; and God's will and ours are one.
      - Dante ("Dante Alighieri"),
        Vision of Paradise (canto XX, l. 122)

The Athanasian Creed is the most splendid ecclesiastical lyric ever poured forth by the genius of man.
      - Benjamin Disraeli, 1st Earl of Beaconsfield,
        Endymion (ch. LIV)

He was the word that spake it,
  He took the bread and brake it;
    And what that word did make it,
      I do believe and take it.
      - Dr. John Donne,
        Divine Poems--On the Sacrament,
        (Flesher's Edition)

You can and you can't,--You shall and you shan't--You will and you won't--And you will be damned if you do--And you will be damned if you don't.
      - Lorenzo Dow ("Crazy Dow"),
        Reflections on the Love of God (ch. 6),
        defining Calvinism

And after hearing what our Church can say,
  If still our reason runs another way,
    That private reason 'tis more just to curb,
      Than by disputes the public peace disturb;
        For points obscure are of small use to learn,
          But common quiet is mankind's concern.
      - John Dryden, Religio Laici (l. 445)

'Twas God the word that spake it,
  He took the bread and brake it,
    And what the word did make it,
      That I believe and take it.
      - Elizabeth I,
        in Clark's "Ecclesiastical History--Life of Queen Elizabeth", p. 94 (edition 1675)

Theology is Anthropology.
  [Ger., Die Theologie ist die Anthropologie.]
      - Ludwig Andreas Feuerbach,
        Wesen des Christenthums

Thus this brook hath conveyed his ashes into Avon, Avon into Severn, Severn into the narrow seas, they into the main ocean. And thus the ashes of Wickliffe are the emblem of his doctrine, which now is dispersed all the world over.
      - Thomas Fuller (1), Church History
         (sec. II, bk. IV, par. 53),
        Wickliffe's body was burned and his ashes thrown into the brook Swift in 1415

All sects seem to me to be right in what they assert, and wrong in what they deny.
      - Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

Doctrine is the framework of life; it is the skeleton of truth, to be clothed and rounded out by the living graces of a holy life. It is only the lean creature whose bones become offensive.
      - A.M.R. Gordon (pseudonym of Alexander McGregor Rose)

The question is not whether a doctrine is beautiful, but whether it is true. When we want to go to a place, we don't ask whether the road leads through a pretty country, but whether it is the right road, the road pointed out by authority, the turnpike-road.
      - Augustus William Hare

He knew how to weaken his divinity, on occasion, as well as an old housewife to weaken her tea, lest it should keep people awake.
      - Oliver Wendell Holmes, Sr.

I do not admit that my doctrine can be judged by anyone.
      - Martin Luther

Shall I ask the brave soldier, who fights by my side
  In the cause of mankind, if our creeds agree?
    Shall I give up the friend I have valued and tried,
      If he kneel not before the same altar with me?
        From the heretic girl of my soul should I fly,
          To seek somewhere else a more orthodox kiss?
            No! perish the hearts, and the laws that try
              Truth, valour, or love, by a standard like this!
      - Thomas Moore,
        Irish Melodies--Come Send Round the Wine

Names are changed more readily than doctrines, and doctrines more readily than ceremonies.
      - Thomas Love Peacock,
        The Misfortunes of Elphin

"Orthodoxy, my Lord,: said Bishop Warburton, in a whisper,-- "orthodoxy is my doxy,--heterodoxy is another man's doxy."
      - Dr. Joseph Priestly, Memoirs
         (vol. I, p. 572)

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