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Royal Opposition

Isaac Newton

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Royal Opposition

After 1685, Newton again encountered the problem of a monarch who tried to mingle politics, religion and education. The new king, James II, wanted Trinity College to award unearned degrees to those whose religious beliefs agreed with his own. Because they would not do this, Newton and eight other teachers from Trinity College were brought before the High Court on trumped up charges. Although the charges were rightfully dismissed, the episode had been a great strain on the men.

Isaac Newtons times of hardship and struggle throughout his lifetime did not produce bitterness. Instead, Newtons own words show that this brought him closer to God. Trials are medicines which our gracious and wise physician gives because we need them, and the proportions the frequency and weight of them to what the case requires. Let us trust his skill and thank him for the prescription.


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