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latter,' in a variety of performances, has dedicated her fine talents and taste to the doing of good, been a blessing to society, an ornament to her own sex, and a noble example to ours. Mr. Hall and Mr. Jay among the Dissenters, both masterly writers, have, in their sermons, supported, with distinguished abilities, the interests of Evangelical piety, without declaring themselves on the side either of Calvinism or of Arminianism.
The progress of Evangelical religion in the Church of England and among the Dissenters has lately awakened the fears of many, who are hostile to the distinguishing doctrines of Christianity. A most furious attack was commenced on Evangelical preachers and on Evangelical preaching, in a production, the title of which was “ Hints to the Public and the Legislature, on the Nature and Effects of Evangelical Preaching," by a Barrisster. Two other parts were afterwards added. The writer, evidently a Socinian, hypocritically pretends great con
as any of their fellow men ; a demonstration that it proceeds from no bad prin. ciple, from no want of love either to God or to man, but fron (supposing them to be mistaken) a greater concern for the honour of God, than for their own vindication. But let us suppose that the vindicators of human nature are in a mistake (and they surely are as liable to mistake as those whom they opposed), are they prepared to prove, before the Court of Heaven, that it was not pride, or ar. rogance of mind which led them to apologize for their own sins, and to refuse submission to the Righteousness of God, that made them choose the part they have taken in this controversy. Mr. E, must think strangely of the laws by which the Court of Heaven decides, if he supposes that they make it a high offence for men to take part with it against themselves. Those who believe the doctrine of Original sin consider this as a point at issue between God and man. They therefore condemn themselves and justify God. Did they ascribe this corruption to God, they would be guilty of blasphemy. Did they exculpate themselves and others of the same sentiments, they would loudly proclaim that self-love, and not humility, was the main-spring of their actions. But as they are witnesses against their opponents, and for themselves, it is easy to see on which side selflove is most likely to preponderate.
cern for the Church of England, though his own creed is destructive of her best interests and subversive of her whole Liturgy. If passion, misrepresentation, and ill language, can effect any thing, this Gentleman has unquestionably proved his point. He charges Evangelical Ministers with teaching “ that God made men originally sinful and depraved ;” represents them as the enemies of morality; calls them fools, madmen, blockheads, pious pontiffs, bloated lay priests, &c. &c., and says, he might as well reason with Aldgate pump. Dr. Hawker, Dr. Collyer, and Mr. Styles have replied to the Barrister, with temperate language and a force of argument, to which such a writer was scarcely entitled.
ON ANTINOMIANISM AND ANTINOMIANS.
That the Son of God came into the world to redeem men from the Moral Government of God is a position 80 wretchedly absurd, and so horribly impious, that did not facts forbid the conclusion, we would be disposed to think the existence of Antinomians among those who believe in the doctrine of Redemption, a thing almost impossible. 'The Sacrifice and Atonement of Christ are the means of religion ; but the end of it is the reconciliation of sinners to God, and of God to sinners. The sufferings of our blessed Saviour exhibit, to all intelligent beings, the criminality of rebellion against God, more forcibly than the everlasting destruction of the whole human race could possibly have done. He who believes
in the original dignity of the Son of God, in his Satisfaction to the justice of his Father, for our sins, by hearing the punishment of them on his own body; and yet considers this infinite sacrifice as intended to deliver us from that subjection to God, as the Governor of the Universe, which is equally the duty and the happiness of all created intelligences, has united in his creed the greatest possible contradictions.
As we cannot suppose that blessed angels, or the redeemed saints of God, can ever be independent of their Creator, we cannot suppose that they will ever be exempted from his moral government, or ever be without law. Their blessed. ness and their holiness will, to eternity, consist in perfect obedience to his laws. The sum of the moral law is the supreme love of God, and the love of our neighbours, as of ourselves. The man who supposes that the Redemption of the Gospel sets aside either the one, or both of these two great commands, blasphemes the grace of God, by making Christ the minister of ini. quity.
An abuse of the Gospel seems early to have taken place in the Christian Church, and to have led to Antino. mianism various professors of the Gospel.
This fact appears evidently from the Epistle of St. James. In his days men had arisen who advanced a claim to faith, and who were satisfied with a faith that '
he pronounced to be dead, and unavailing. One of Luther's disciples, Agricola, pleaded that Christians are not subject to the moral law, as a rule of obedience; but under the Gospel as a dispensation of faith, working by love. He was opposed and confuted by his master. From him the term Antinomian was applied to those who adopted his sentiments. It is composed of two Greek Words, signifying against
the law.. Labadie, who was a Jesuit in France, and afterwards became a Protestant, and a Minister at Mid. dleburgh, in Zealand, adopted the doctrines of Antinomianism. He was deposed by the synod of Dort, in 1669. His followers were called Labadists. They contended vehemently, that all morality should be banished from sermons. During the Usurpation of Cromwell, Antino. mianism is said to have had many disciples, whose system and manners were equally licentious. They are said to have maintained, that when men are justified they are wholly sanctified. In other words, while some merge Justification in Sanctification, these, on the other hand, lost Sanctification in Justification. They are also said to have taught that a believer has no inherent righteousness; that God will save us to the uttermost without any holiness of our own; that no action done by a believer, though it be contrary to the moral law, is sinful; and that he is neither required to confess his sins, to repent of them, nor to forsake them ; with many other blasphemous and abominable sayings. Rutherford, and many other pious men, have written against them. He was answered by Dr. Crisp, who was first an Arminian, and afterwards an Antinomian ; but though the doctrines he embraced were licentious, he is said not to have been licentious in his life. He is understood to have been a man of large estate, and of a beneficent disposition. He died in 1641. Mr. John Saltmarsh, of Magdalen College, is another Antinomian writer. Mr. Neale represents him as a man of fine active fancy, a good preacher, and a chaplain to the Parliamentary army.
Whatever apology may be made for the man, the cause will admit of none. Doctrines which set men at liberty from obedi
ence to the laws of God, are, above all others, dishonour. ing to God, and destructive to the souls of men.
Though it is to be hoped that few teachers in our days venture to lay down positions so absurd and immoral as those which we have mentioned, it cannot be denied that instances of extravagant doctrine, and which seem to look toward Antinomianism, are sometimes found to oc
Some ministers have affirmed that the whole work of man's salvation was finished by Jesus Christ on the
That the price of our redemption was fully paid there, is certainly a glorious truth; but as our salvation necessarily includes our complete sanctification, it cannot be complete till Christians be presented without spot or blemish before the throne of God.-The love of paradox, and an ambition to say things uncommon and new, bare often diverted men whose imagination was stronger than their judgment, from that sobriety of doctrine which, though it dazzles less, more confirms and invigorates the faith and hope of Christians. Among those who, in our days, have been charged, and not unjustly charged, with Antinomianism, none have arisen whose progress has been so rapid as that of Mr. Huntington. From a coal-heaver, who could not read his Bible, within a few years he advanced to be a preacher, followed by thousands. Being a man of genius, and possessing a vigorous mind, he attained, with fewer faults than could have been expected, the knowledge of the art of composition, superior even to some who enjoyed a liberal education. His Bank of Faith, Arminian Skeleton, &c. &c. display a wonderful acquaintance with Scripture, and the last particularly, a luxuriancy of fancy very uncommon. All his performances exhibit marks of a mind active and ardent, but extremely addicted to extravagance. The opposition he met from