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[90] the case of the right and left hand,) as the exponent of that will — they are what is ordered in the case, and make the right. Hence he condemns as “wretched mummery” the distinction admitted by M. Portalis, between obedience to a command, and obedience to what is right and just in itself, and, on the same ground, pronounces it “highly improper” to say, with Mr. Locke, “God has a right to do it: we are his creatures.” For truly if his will be the ultimate genus of right, then he can have no rights, for there is certainly no superior to whose commands he conforms in the acts of his will. But precisely at this point let us take our stand. I affirm on the authority of Scripture, no less than sound philosophy, (always in harmony,) that God has rights, and that the distinction of M. Portalis is in many instances correct; and that hence Tooke, Dr. Paley, (who also concurs in this view — see his article Rights, in his Moral Philosophy,) Dr. Webster, with many others of great distinction, strangely err, not in their etymology of this word, but in that hypothesis by which they make it a significate of the will of God. We cannot agree with then that rights and duties which are reciprocal, are resolvable only into the will of God--have his will alone for their ultimate foundation. I take ground back of this. True, I say with them — and I claim full

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M. Portalis (2)
Webster (1)
Horne Tooke (1)
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Paley (1)
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