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Now let me beg of this gentleman to interpret the rest of her articles so as to quadrate with this axiom; and then the EXTREME Sense to which he carries them will be found art extravagance of which she is not guilty. Whatever the Hills and the Orertons, and their coadjutors may affirm, the absolute impossibility of falling away after regeneration, is no doctrine of the Church of England. In proof, I quote the conclusion of the 15th article of our Church_" all we the rest, although baptized, and born again in Christ, yet offend in many things; and if we say we have no fin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.” I add the conclusion of the 16th. « After we have received the Holy Ghost, we may depart from grace given, and fall into fin; and by the grace of God we may rise again, and amend our lives; and therefore they are to be condemned which say they can no more fin as long as they live here, or deny the place of forg.tenels to such as truly repent."- - Let Calvin and the Calvinifts answer for the terrible and revolting doctrines they have reared upon Scripture partially construed ; - our Church does not hold men to be such mere machines as to have no freedom of will, no abhorrence of sin, no preference of godliners ; so as to be incapable of “ refusing the evil or choosing the goo 1.” She looks upon her sons as rational creatures;- she admits the influence of God's grace, but she allows that we are free to fall, and also that by God's help we may rise again. · The proper Preibyterians say something of repentance in their 15th article, which by no means tallies with what the North Briton would impute to them ;-something to which our Methodists will hardly conient. * 8 III. Although repentance be not to be rested in, as any satisfaction for fin, or any cause of the pardon thereof, which is the act of God's free grace in Christ, yet it is of such NECESSITY to all finners, that none may erpect pardon WITHOUT it. IV. As there is no fin so small, but it deserves damnation ; so there is no fin so great that it can bring damnation to those who truly repent."
They affirm something, too, respecting the moral law which the Methodists never urge upon their hearers ; an omillion which annuls all the distinction which some would set up between them and the Antinomians. “ Art. 19. § V. The moral law doth for ever bind all, as well Jutified persons as others, to the obedience thereof; and that not only in regard of the matter contained in it, but also in respect of the authority of God the Creator who gave it. Neither doth Christ in the Gospel any way DISSOLVE, but much STRENGTHEN this obligation.”
I will conclude by giving you the Kirk's “ evidences of true faith,” set forth in her abstract of “the sum of saving knowledge.” « Evidences of true faith. 1. Conviction of the believer's obligation to keep the moral law. 2. That the believer practise the rules of godliness and righteousness. 3. That obedience to the law run in the right channel of faith in Christ. 4. The keeping of Itrait communion with Christ, the fountain of all grace and good works.- For strengthening the believer in faith and obedience, by these evidences.”- Are there such evidences as the Methodills, and the common herd of Dininters in England, would require; or such as the feceders, and the foi difunt propagators at home in Scotland would look for? Has the North Briton ever seen any experiences, as they are called ? They are to be had ready written in England, at various prices, from fixpence upward, in the purlieus of most of the schilm-thops. These mi: serable scrolls present very different evidences of true faith ;- such as the Hills and the Haldanes might look for; but not such as the Church of England, or the Episcopal Church or the Kirk of Scotland would ask. from eir ions.
And now, Gentlemen, I trust, even the North Briton begins to think, that the proper Presbyterian differs from the Church of England, in matters of discipline only. One has a Liturgy and Episcopacy--the other prefcribes her prayers, by means of the directories, and has no bishops. Į must beg leave here, to explain my use of the word only, in the last sen, tençe but one, and in my character of Dr. Mayo. I do not mean by it, that matters of discipline are of trifling moment; that is, that the question subfisting between Episcopacy and Presbyterianism, is a question of “inferior confideration and importance ;” but finiply, that it is the only material difference between the two establithed churches of this realm. Dr. Mayo respected the proper Presbyterians, as men of orthodox principles, in points of faith and Christian practice; as men, who have set forth their principles explicitly to the world, and who therefore may be convinced, when those principles are proved to be unfounded. But the wretched mass of ecclesiastical Jacobins own to no ostensible principles. You know not how to cope with a Methodist, or a Diffenter, who harmonizes with him: He for ever evades your arguments. You no fponer reduce his notions to inconsistency with Seripture, or to an absurdity, than he denies his tenets, and contemptuously laughs in his sleeve. He is for the church, and against the church ; for articles, and against subscription ; for an ordained ministry, when he can get one to his mind; and against episcopacy, when he would evade the grasp of power. He will twist and turn like an eel, lip through your fingers, and hide himself in the mud, if he cannot otherwile escape you. Sometimes he will put on a fighting face, and pretend to“ strive for the mastery lawfully; but it is all delusion !
“ Fiet enim fubito sus horidus, atraque Tigris,
Excidet, aut in Aquas tenues dilapfus abibit.” It has been said, that the proper Presbyterians have been heretofore more tin&tured with Calvinism than they are at present. I am glad to learn, that they are grown moderate. If they went the length that the North Briton supposes, they went further towards Geneva than their prin. ciples gave them licence. I have seen nothing of it myself, and this į know, by experience, that, upon all parochial contests, for lectureships, &c. the proper Presbyterians uniformly range on the side of the Established Church; whilst the Independents, the Seceders, the Baptists, the Methodists, as uniformly oppose it. June 8, 1802.
I am, Gentleman,
A LONDON CURATE.
THE DUKE OF BEDFORD.. TO THB EDITORS OF THE ORTHODOX CHURCHMAN'S MAGAZINE,
GENTLEMEN, NO man detests the be-plaistering of the great with unmerited praise
more than I do. A great deal too much in the way of panegyrick, has been said of a young nobleman lately deceased. That some parts of his character were good, nobody can deny; but the company which he kept in making the tour of Europe; and the zeal with which he entered into the mysteries of the turf and the business of the gaming-table at home, must ever afford a mortifying set-off against his virtues as an agriculturalist or his merits as a grazier. His political attachments are well known. He was only one of many dupes to the principles of whiggism, and the practices of modern whigs. He, like some other noblemen, could not fee that if the new philofophy had not met with a timely check; nobility, and the property of nobility had gone to wreck in Britain as surely as in France. To alter the constitution of any realm is of all experiments the most dangerous. To convert a free monarchy into a suspicious and ungrateful republic (as all republics are, and ever have been, and ever will be) is at once an useless and a moft hazardous attempt.
« The ceafe of majesty
SHAKSPEARE. However, it is not to the political character of a late nobleman that I wish to draw your attention, but to his religious one. It does not appear that he was in the habit of joining in the public worship of Almighty God. Yet it seems that although he himself did not go to church he was not indifferent about the accommodation of such as chose to go thither. The Rev. Edm. Cartwright in a sermon preached in the Parish Church of Woburn on the Sunday after the interment of the Duke of Bedford states this fact, which I was glad to learn. I “rejoice not in the iniquity” of any man, but am delighted with “ the truth," when the truth is to the advantage of his character. Says Mr. C. “One lesson he has left us, which cqually applies to every condition; which speaks the same univerial language to the high and to the low. This leflon of severe instruction, teaching us the fragility of life, and the important conclusions to be derived from it, who that can reflect, but for a moment on the circumstances of his untimely death, does not feel imprefled upon his heart? And the impression will not be abated by observing that this place where we are now assembled, decorated by his munificence, and for the completion of which he was so anxious, and looked forward to with so much pleasure; that this place, I say, on the very day he expected it to have been made use of in its finished state, should be hung round with, and darkened by the emblems of his mortality!”,
Thus much I have thought it but fair to state, and to give to Mr. Cartwright's mention of the duke's munificence in decorating a parish church all the publicity which it may derive from an insertion of this part of his sermon in your Magazine.
I am Gentlemen, yours, &c. June 5, 1802.
A COUNTRY VICAR.
TO THE EDITORS OF THE ORTHODOX CHURCHMAN'S MAGAZINE, . GENTLEMEN, T AM astonished at the imprudent conduct of the friends of the Duke of ? Bedford, and at the indecent praises beftowed by some clergymen upon him. I have before me a funeral sermon, preached at Woburn, his Grace's parish church, in the country, but which he never once entered, for the purpose of divine worship; and he had no service at Woburn Abbey
This preacher says, “ The memory of his virtues shall long continue. Whether we contemplate him as a public or a private character, he is equally the object of our admiration and regret.” p. 17. Now, I always thought, that religion was the alone foundation of all the virtues; and that, without this, however fpecious might be the character, it would not prove of folid worth. Public worship is part of a man's religion it is a duty due to God and to man. Now, I declare, on the information of his parish priest, that his Grace of Bedford never once entered his parisa church, for the sake of worship. He might, to give directions to his workmen, and to beautify the church, by a monument, but not out of a regard to God.
But this was not all. His Grace had no more regard for others sanctifying the Sabbath than he himself had. Sunday, in the country, was generally employed, as the day for paying his numerous workmen, labourers, and farming men.
The great pond was once to be emptied, in his Grace's presence, and no day was found fo proper for it as Sunday: in which some hundred of hands were employed.
After this, mall we hear of his Grace's virtues from the pulpit? I hope that, in the estimation of a Clergyman, the violation of a plain positive command, is no proof of Christian virtue ; and I would submit to the writer of that sermon, to read it over again, and to see how little the example of his Grace agrees with the moral or doctrinal part of his discourse.
The Duke of Bedford was a young man, easily flattered and led away : Because Mr. F - retires from the House of Commons, as the disgusted statesman, disappointed in his love of power, the Duke of Bedford must do the same in the House of Peers, when he commenced his grand agricul. tural pursuits ; but it is not likely that this would have long continued ; for, from his speech at the last annual meeting, he seemed to have great doubt whether they had done any good; whether they had not considerably increased the price, without improving the quality of butcher's meat; whether large sums, and great quantity of food, were not expended for little or no good. His Grace deserted his proper post, as a peer in parliament, to appear, where a nobleman will never shine, as a farmer and grazier. He is liable to be duped on every side; and they who wish to impose the most upon him, will persuade him that he is superior to all deceit and flattery.
To return to the writer of the sermon : In pity his name is concealed. He might preach and print it in a moment of surprise, or he might be carried away with the torrent of grief, being on the spot : But I am convinced the place was misapplied, and the Christian Sabbath mispent, in celebrating the praises of that personage, who never frequented that place, Who to often violated the Sabbath. If Paine or Thelwall, or Beltham,
had celebrated his Grace's praises, this would have been in chara&er : they were admitted to Bedford House ; they had an end to be answered ; but for the Christian Divine, so far to forget his great Master, and his fat cred cause, to praise such a character, to hold him forth as an object of admiration and regret, is really astonishing! And if such strong facts did not ftare us in the face, would not be credible : But here, we hope, that the press will be purer than the pulpit ; if the sermon efcape censure from the pulpit, it will not from the press. We hope never to see the day arrive, when the press can issue gross adulation can call good evil, and evil goodcan confound the eternal distinctions of right and wrong. Are there fuck charms in a name; are the expectations of preferment to be received, or the gratitude for past favours so great, as to overcome every better confia deration?
DEAN HI(KES'S LETTER. TO THE EDITORS OF THE ORTHODOX CHURCHMAN's MAGAZINE.
GENTLEMEN, A S you have honoured me by inserting in your valuable miscellany the • 1 copy which I some time since transmitted to you of Dr. Gee's letter, p. p. 207-209, of your Magazine for April, 1802, I now take the liberty of sending you a copy of as much of Dean Hickes's letter as relates to the reading of JAMES II. “8 Declaration of Indulgence ;" which your correspondent the LONDON CURATE had particularly defired I would do, at p. 141 of your Magazine for March, 1802.-Without meaning in the most distant manner to hint that any of your numerous readers are unacquainted with the transactions concerning religion in the reign of James II. King of England, (since no one that has any regard for the Protestant religion, so greatly oppressed during that king's reign, can feel themselves uninterested in the arbitrary, illegal, and oppressive proceedings which hiftory records concerning it) it may not be improper to give a light idea of the situation of public affairs, more especially such as had any reference to religion, at the period of the Dean's writing the following letter, for the purpose of better understanding the allusions that letter contains.
During the short and tempestuous reign of James II, his attachment to arbitrary principles of government and the Romijh superfiition was very apparent. His partiality for POPERY, the only part of his character with which we are at present concerned, began to manifest itself very soon after the commencement of his reign, and this unliappy propensity continually increased till at last it drove him to such extremities as compelled him, in the year 1688, to ABDICATE THE THRONE. His proceedings, for many year's previous to this catastrophe, demonstrated to all the world that it was his full determination at every risque to establish POPERY in the kingdom ; though contrary to his CORONATION OATH, to the affurances he had at different times made to his council, and to the genius and temper of the English nation ; and this determination loft him his crown. The king had some years after his succeflion to the throne begun the work he had in view, by suspending all the penal laws against Catholics, and granting a general liberty of conscience to all his subjects ; by which steps his Popish subjects had power of publicly exercising their religion, and were put in a capacity of enjoying places of trust and confidence under the government. He proceeded to reward all who professed the Roman Catholic religion, and to puth them forward into public offices, often in the moft arbitrary and