Imágenes de páginas

But by religion, Jewks, I do not nieanThecon ther orthodoxy or vision j the religion that ciucon."* ^bitfield and other enlightened men whine at in their conventicles to ignorant multiides of deluded wretches; or, that inven•ue piety, which Randolph (a), and other itheiss are sadly employed in defending j 10 it hath no foundation in scripture, or 1 common sense.

By religion I mean that heavenly law hich teacheth and professeth the immutable premacy of the one God and Father of all, id the subordination of the son to the will 7 the Father; which directs us to keep up gratefui commerce with him, as our creator, jr redeemer, our protector, and our father, id to make an unfeigned regard to him, the K k 2 foun

(a) I mention Dr. Randolph the tritheijl, on purise to let you know, in answer to your question conrning him, that his vindication of a co-equal, co ernal, and consubstantial trinity published in three irts, against the bishop of Clogher'sEstay on Spirit, is e weakest and most inconsistent apology for the dreatsl heresy as three Gods that I have ever read. Waterland with Randolph a Father, the greatest of divines, hi» aster; but surely Christianity is a great sufferer by such Father and such a disciple. If misinterpretation and vil, partiality, obstinacy, and rancour, are wicked ings in controversy, these doctors are great criminals r the use they have made of them in writing sot eir miserable system. In an appendix at the end of my pond letter, you will find some animadversions on this ipartitc piece of Dr. Randolph, and on KnowUs, and e other two writers against my lord of Clogher. —— foundation of all our virtues, and the principle of all our actions j to address this blessed God in daily prayer and praises,' as those who know we are to him a holy priesthood, .and a peculiar people, and to approach him through the great Mediator, the holy Jesus; to make a dedication of ourselves to him, to copy out the divine perfections in a holy life, and abound in all the offices of justice and charity to our fellow-creature. This is true religion. Let it be your faith and your practice } without regarding the nonsense or our enlightened ones, or the learning of the doctors. What flows from the pure fountain of reason improved by revelation, what gives a generous conception of the Deity, and manifests the divine genius of Christianity, is worth our embracing. It is the perfection of religion to worship one firs cause, the parent of nature, the fountain of all authority, and power, and to acknowledge

You will likewise have in the same place some remarks on the book called Ophiomaches, or Deism reveled., two volumes of outragious stuff we had from an Irish theologer in 1749: And some observations on two volumes more, called Discourses, by the fame author; which came out this year, and are, without ail peradventure, the trust extravagant rant that ever proceeded from the head of a senseless orthodox bully. The writer is malice himself. He blackens antients and moderns; and has the Corinthian face to ofser the most despicable biblial ignorance to the public fox explication of scripture. his superintcndency over all things and


^irs j that a supreme Being is

hatever is felt, or acted in the universe; d that there must one still be remaining ithin us in the perfectest recesses, or deepest litude, who is a witness and fpeSlator of lr thoughts and aftions: that a universal ingdom and dominion is committed to Jesus Ic Mediator, and a power to raise us from ie dead ; that he is to come again at the

Dmpleat the designs of the mediatorial scheme, "his is indeed a noble and gracious instituon. It is an everlasting guard to truth and irtue, and an awful call to ac! what is right; iot only in conformity to that unalterable ule df action which is founded in the reason >f things, but in regard to the great and Inking authority of so high a personage as he first and only begotten Son of God.

From this religion then, my dear Hugolin1 et no sophistry or enthusiasm, profit or toss, ever gain you to recede. Cry, Abba, Father, evermore, and lay hold on the covenant of grace and peace in Christ 'Jesus out Lord. This secures your everlasting concerns^ whatever death, whatever time you die: And if you should happen to be in perils by land, and in perils by water, you may hope for deliverance from the power of that mighty Being who is -invariably good; and


mankind, and

[ocr errors]

have Th con ^ave more l^an ordinary reason to joyn in elusion." ascribing with the glorious and innumerable heavenly host'

Honor, power, and thanksgiving to the eternal God, who Jits upon the throne of supremacy, unrivalled in majefty and power.

This has been my case many a time. I have been in as deplorable distresses as ever man fell into, on this stage of being, and have often stood on the brink of death and misery, without the least probability of an escape, by any means within my power : Yet. here I am still by the good will of him who dwelt in the bush of Horeb. He governs and manages the first springs of natural causes, and without altering nature, visibly directs them to the preservation of his creatures, where his infinite wisdom sees fit.

Or, if philosophy will cavil, and allow no kind of actual interposition, in providence, tho scripture plainly teaches it, yet it is certain. that the all-wife creator of the world, on foresight of the dispositions and wants of moral agents, might so order the constitution of natural things in the beginning, and appoint the constant course of nature, as to make them a provision and relief, in proportion to temper and exigency,' upon every occasion he saw proper j and thereby be as much a present help in all events, as if he interposed by actual operation. This is easy

* "to to infinite wisdom and power. Let it be done The eonone way or other, providence, I can affirm,clusionhas had a peculiar influence upon many an event in several periods of my life. Presideing goodness has often preserved me, and manifested to my senses the word of his power,

And as there are very few, I believe, who have not had some experiences of the kind in one part or other of their lives, I imagine every reader of this Postscript will with pleasure joyn me, when I extol him first, him last, him midst, and without end. j

Blessed be the glorious God, evensehovah, the self-existent, the God of Israel, who alone doth •wondrous things: And blessed be the name of his Majesty for ever, through Christ Jesus our Lord.

Barbican, Pec. 31, 1754

[ocr errors][graphic]
« AnteriorContinuar »