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ry? Lies, deceit, vanity, iniquities of every description; in other words, chaff: these he hath sown in the human nature, and they grow with, and closely adhere to every soul of man. But God our Creator will separate those works of the adversary from his own works; his fan is in his hand, and he will thoroughly purge his floor destroying whatever can offend, and gathering what he esteemeth right precious, into his garner. And, saith the spirit of truth, having purged our sins by himself, he sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high, Hebrews i. 3. "Who being the brightness of his glory, and the express image of his person, and upholding all things by the word of his power, when he had by himself purged our sins, sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high."

Thus is Christ Jesus, indeed, and in truth, the Lamb of God that taketh away the sins of the world: and this ministry of reconciliation is committed unto all God's sent servants, to wit, that God was in Christ reconciling the world unto himself, not imputing their trespasses unto them. 2d Corinthians, v. 18, 19:

"And all things are of God, who hath reconciled us to himself by Jesus Christ, and hath given to us the ministry of reconciliation;

"To wit, that God was in Christ, reconciling the world unto himself, not imputing their trespasses unto them; and hath committed unto us the word of reconciliation."

But if God did not impute the sins of the world unto the world, unto whom then did he impute them? The prophet Isaiah furnishes an answer to this question, chap. liii. 6. " All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way, and the Lord hath laid on him the iniquity of us all. "On whom, pray? on Jesus the head of every man. Isaiah proceeds to the close of this chapter, to render this matter incontrovertible :

"He was oppressed, and he was afflicted, yet he opened not his mouth he is brought as a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearer is dumb, so he openeth not his mouth.

"He was taken from prison and from judgment: and who shall declare his generation? For he was cut off out of the land of the living for the transgressions of my people was he stricken.

"And he made his grave with the wicked, and with the rich in his death; because he had done no violence, neither was any deceit in his mouth.

"Yet it pleased the Lord to bruise him; he hath put him to grief; when thou shalt make his soul an offering for sin, he shalf

see his seed, he shall prolong his days and the pleasure of the Lord shall prosper in his hand.

"He shall see of the travail of his soul, and shall be satisfied: by his knowledge shall my righteous servant justify many; for he shall bear their iniquities.

"Therefore will I divide him a portion with the great, and he shall divide the spoil with the strong; because he hath poured out his soul unto death: and he was numbered with the transgressors, and he bare the sins of many, and made intercession for the transgressors."

Thus, that mercy and truth might meet together, that death, which was the wages of sin, followed the transgression. Jesus, bearing all our sins in his own body on the tree, suffered for the unjust to bring us to God; for he came not to destroy the law, but to fulfil the law, and it is therefore that a sinful world is saved, by the justice of a just God, and a Saviour; and hence we are called upon to behold the Lamb of God that taketh away the sin of the world; and it is therefore, we believe, that if the Lamb of God hath taken away the sin of the world, he hath also taken away the procuring cause of condemnation and misery.

It is the believing of this glorious, and most consolatory truth, which bestoweth peace, that peace, which the world can neither give, nor take away; and it is this indubitable truth, which renders glory to God in the highest, and peace and good will to men.

It was in some such manner as this I pursued my subject, until suffering much from previous indisposition, and being very weary, I hastened to a close.

The gentleman who statedly administered to the congregation ` then arose, and informed them, that a reverend gentleman then present had a short discourse to deliver, if they were willing to tarry, and hear it; for, by the movements of the audience, it appeared they were designing to pass out of the church. I addressed them, however, earnestly requesting they would listen to the proposed discourse, regretting the severe indisposition which necessitated my departure, but congratulating them on the golden opportunity with which they were now furnished, of investigating whatever could be said, for and against the gospel of God our Saviour, of comparing, and of judging, for themselves; and, I devoutly added, God Almighty give you understanding in all things.

The gentleman appointed to deliver the discourse, at this moment entered the pulpit, and seeing me ready to depart, kindly assisted me in putting on my coat, and I descended the stairs with a full determination to quit the church. But, a number of my friends gathered round me in the broad aisle, conjuring me to stay. I repeated my plea of indisposition. It seemed to those friends there was too much at hazard, to permit their acceptance of this plea-" Dear, dear, Sir, it will be thought, and said, that you quitted the church, in the dread of hearing something which would confound you, that you could not answer, and that consequently you dared not continue in the church."

This was probable; I determined that no personal consideration, however great my indisposition, should influence me to depart, and I immediately took a seat in one of the pews, directly before the pulpit.

The reverend gentleman opened his book, and I listened attentively, while he sang at me and prayed at me, telling his Maker, in his prayer, many things of me, that the God whom he addressed knew were not true. After which he selected his text, from the first general Epistle of John, iv. 16: "And we have known, and believed the love that God hath to us. God is love; and he that dwelleth in love dwelleth in God, and God in him."

He then began in the following manner:

"The impostor to whom you have been attending, would teach you to draw consolation from this consideration. But, I will undertake to prove, that the love of God is the sole cause of the eternal damnation of the greater part of human kind; and thus it is: God knowing that his little flock cannot be happy any longer than while they see the misery of the wicked, the offended God must keep the offender in misery forever, that they, his little flock, may forever see from what they are saved. The destruction of hell would be the destruction of heaven."

This appeared to him a clear proposition, and thus he left it, and went on to notice some expressions which I had uttered during my attempt to investigate divine truth. I happened to quote the Apostle in the passage in which he asserts, we love him, because he first loved us; and in his observation on this quotation, he challenged every one in that large congregation to produce a single instance of God's ever loving an individual, who did not first love him! He remarked, with great zeal, on the horrid blasphemies he VOL. II.


had heard the deceiver, to whom they had been attending, utter; he was indeed greatly shocked, so he supposed were all the reflecting part of the audience. You have been told, he continued, that Christ was curst for sinners! Horrid! horrid! again he challenged any one, in that great assembly, to point out a single instance in the book of God, that could justify so horrid a blasphemy!

"The deceiver to whom we have been attending, has said a great deal about the fulness and unbounded grace of the gospel, dwelling much upon the universality of gospel grace, repeating over and over again, that the command was to preach the gospel to every creature: Yes, so indeed it was; but he should have remembered the conditions which accompanied this proclamation.

"Suppose our Governor should publish, or should cause to be published, that all those who were concerned in what was called Shays' rebellion, should have a free pardon; that is, if they were Now this would six feet high, had black hair, and Roman noses. be, in the first instance, to every creature; but then there are certain annexed conditions to which it would be their interest and their duty to attend, and this deceived man, for I presume he was deceived himself, or he would not thus have sought to deceive others, has thought proper to pass over the conditions.

"O, my friends, be not deceived; depend upon it, no individual of the human race will ever gain pardon or future felicity, who hath not repentance and faith in this state. I think it my duty to tell you this, and you may rest assured of the truth thereof; whatever this poor mistaken man may see fit to say to the contrary, you will find it so. I hope you will see and feel the necessity of this before it is too late.

"Now is the accepted time, now is the day of salvation; you may not have another. Awake then, thou that sleepest, arise from the dead, and God shall give you light. Is it possible that this man's conscience, if he have any, did not fly in his face? But there will be a time, when he will find it was both his interest and his duty to tell the people God's truth, that they may not sleep the sleep of death.

"I fear many poor souls in eternity will curse the day that ever they heard this man's voice, and like the rich man in hell-torments would wish to have one sent to their father's house, to try to prevent their brethren from coming to that place of torment. The company he keeps now, may laugh with him here, but they will

howl with him in hell. Be not deceived. God is not mocked; assure yourselves he will not then be mocked; and whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap.

"This man tells you of the love of God; but I say again, there is not in the whole Bible a single sentence which speaks of any individual that ever was loved of God, till he first loved him. He talks of God's loving sinners; so he does, when they break off their sins by righteousness, but until then he hates them with a perfect hatred. But you will say, or perhaps the preacher you have brought here may say, God will call them when, and where he pleases, and if at any time they will hear, and answer his call, he will receive them. But, oh! my friends, I feel for you, every one of you, for you are tottering on the brink of eternity, of a never-ending eternity! I am glad I have an opportunity of warning you, before it be too late! and should I hereafter see you sent from the judgment seat with anguish and terror, I shall tell you of this, I shall feel pleased that I had this opportunity to warn you, and I shall then say to you, If you had heard and believed me, if you had paid no attention to what that man said, it would have been better for you. "But it is now too late, the sentence is passed and execution is begun."

Thus he proceeded, until the congregation seemed quite weary, and for myself you will not doubt I was in a state of perfect suffering.

It appeared to me, however, that the doctrine of that Master, whose ambassador I conceived myself to be, would suffer material injury, if I permitted these reproaches and misrepresentations to pass unnoticed. Instantly, therefore, upon the reverend gentleman's closing his exhortation, I ascended, with some celerity, the pulpit stairs, and placing myself against the door, my efforts to detain the preacher were as great as those he made use of to pass out, and at length I compelled him to take a seat in the pulpit, when, turning to the congregation, I delivered myself to the following effect:

I felicitate you, my friends, upon the present occasion; you are now favoured with an opportunity of hearing both sides of a ques tion, the most important which any individual of the human family can possibly propose, and you have the invaluable privilege of judg ing for yourselves. This privilege is indeed a blessed privilege, and it should be estimated beyond all calculation. Voltaire,

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