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hope in their death, and to have their end peace, but to rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory. “The sting of death is sin;" but the dying believer feels that Christ has washed him from his sins in his own blood, and therefore while he exults, he ascribes to Christ the glory and the victory. What an unspeakable gain is death to the Christian! How safe, how blessed are they who die in the Lord ! “Who shall lay any thing to the charge of God's elect? It is God that jusifieth.Who is he that condemneth? It is Christ that died, yea, rather that is risen again, who is even at the right hand of God, who also maketh intercession for us. Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword ? Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us. For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor things pre$ent, nor things to come, nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”—Rom. vifi. 33-39.
Such is the foundation on which Orthoảoxy leads the soul to build. What has any opposing system to offer a dying sinful creature, as a substitute for this ? Infidelity would rob us of our rock and our refuge, but how does it propose to fortify us against the fear of death ? Are we told that death is the extinction of our being, and taught to hope for annihilation ? The soul recoils abhorrent from the falsehood. Deism professes to soothe us with the hope that there is such mercy in the Supreme Being, that he will not punish men for their trespasses; thus receiving from revelation the general doctrine of mercy, but rejecting the disclosure made by revelation with regard to the mode in which mercy is extended. How false and hollow is the hope which is not inspired by the Gospel. "I am going," said Hobbs, " to take a leap in the dark: I give my body to the dust, and my soul to the great Perhaps.” What has Unitarianism more than Deism to furnish the soul awakened to a sense of ils guilt and helplessness, to sustain it in prospect of appearing before God ? Unitarianism scoffs at the vicarious sacrifice of Christ, and sets aside his justifying righteousness: it therefore withdraws the sinner from that glorious ground of reconciliation, where only he can meet a pardening God. The truth is,
that every system of legality, by leading the soul to seek for justification before God on the ground of supposed works of personal righteousness, is, as well as Deism and Unitarianism, not only an Antichrist, as it would render of none effect the cross of Christ, and nullify the merit of his justifying righteousness; but it is the soul's enemy, and that in its time of utmost need,Mihe hour of death,because it would lead the soul to build on a foundation of sand which cannot sustain the shock, and to take shelter in a refuge of lies which death must sweep away, leaving it naked to the resistless fury of the storm. But does not Unitarianism preach loudly of mercy? It does : like Deism it struts and vapours; and in great swelling words of vanity prates of mercy, as if it were the only system which taught that God was merciful; and it will blacken and belie Orthodoxy as if it held that Christ was more compassionate than the Father, and forced from him a reluctant graciousness. But Unitarianism as well as Deism first fabricates a theory of mercy, and next decides that this is the mercy which best becomes Deity, and which he does exercise. This procedure is as contrary to the rules of sound philosophy, as the theory is contra. dictory to divine revelation. Sound philosophy proceeds, not on theory, but on facts; and the mercy which revelation exhibits, is the very same mercy which Orthodoxy proclaims to men,-a mercy based upon justice, and not conflicting with it,-a mercy wbich saves the singer not upon the ruin of the law, but upon the honour and establishment of the law,-a mercy which provided the sacri. fice of Christ instead of being procured by it--a mercy which from the fulness of blessing it bestows, attracts the soul most engagingly to God, but at the same time fills it with holy awe, at the thought that this mercy is only extended through the sacrifice of Christ, which was the most signal display not only of the love but the terror of Jehovah that the universe ever bebeld.
Orthodoxy, when embraced with all the heart, not only leads the soul to build upon the only true foundation, but enables the dying Christian to call in the most suitable aids to sustain and comfort him. Here is another test to which we may bring this upsetting Unitarianism. It is subversive of those great evangelical views and experiences which strengthen and cheer the soul when it is most in need of strength and comfort. 0! what a heartless
trippling-chilling system it is. What a perpetual jeal. busy does it manifest, lest we should over-exalt or lay undue stress upon the Saviour! If it does not do so in words, it does šo in effect. Do we not find it continually labouring and fretting in endeavouring to prove a long list of negatives respecting Christ,--that he is not God, that he did not die as å sacrifice in the stead of sinners,that he is not to be adored as the object of supreme trust, veneration, and worship, by his followers. Thus it labours to dépreciate Christ in the estimation of wretched men whom he came to save. Taught by the Word and Spirit of truth, Orthodoxy feels no such freezing jealousy res. pecting Christ. It is haunted with no apprehension, lest we should think too highly of the Saviour. It is tormented with no fear, lest we sbould love him too supremely, trust in him too confidingly, honour him too adoringly; for all Christians are concerned “to honour the Son even as they honour the Father.”
When the Christian comes to die, having the full.orbed character of the Saviour beaming upon bis soul, and having through life been habitually employed in committing prospectively the guardianship of his immortal all into the hands of the Lord Jesus, how safe-bow peacefulhow happy does he feel in regard to the issue. The dying Christian does not depend on a Saviour who died merely as a point of historical fact, or who exercises only an inferior regard and influence for the good of his people, but à Saviour whose death as man derived its redeeming efficacy infinitely availing, from the Godhead, which dwelt in him, and who is now living - living not merely as a point of fact, but living influentially-living as the life-giving Head of his Church-living as the de.. pository and dispenser of all saving blessings. The Sa. viour whom Orthodoxy-whom Revelation sets before our minds, is one who bears us on his heart in heavenwho appears in the presence of God for us pleading his merits on our behalf, deeply interested in our welfare infinitely compassionate to feel for us,-omniscient to know all our wants and sorrows,-all-wise to make all things work together for our good, and having all power in heaven and in earth to preserve us unto his everlasting kingdom. Precious in his sight is the death of his saints: he makes his grace sufficient to help them in that time of need ; and hence, many who in health had through fear
of death been subject to bondage, when they come to die, exbibit amazing composure and triumph. The Saviour stands broadly and closely up before the soul in all the light of his grace and salvation. Faith clasps him with all its ardour; love pants to be with him ; hope springs forward beyond the dark and shadowy valley; the flesh faileth, but the heart clings to him as its strength and its portion for ever. Unbelief- fear-self-dependence, and self-righteousness, are frayed away like demon-spirits from the soul; the Christian rises to a noble courage and assurance, and from his death-bed, as from a Pisgah-emi. nence, he surveys and rejoices in the prospect of the promised inheritance. Here is the Saviour's promise :* Fear not, for I am with thee; be not dismayed, for I am thy God: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee." -- Isa. xli. to. • Fear not, for I have redeemed thee; I have called thee by thy name : thou art mine: when thou passest through the waters, I will be with thee, and through the rivers they shall not overflow thee; when thou walkeet through the fire, thou shalt not be burnt, neither shall the flame kindle upon thee.”—Isa. xliii. 12. “Fear not; I am he that liveth and was dead; and behold I am alive for evermore, and have the keys of hell and of death."-Rev. i. 18. Such is the Saviour's promise, and here is the dying Christian's experience: He says with David, “I will not fear, though I pass through the valley of the shadow of death, for thou art with me;" with Job, “I know that my Redeemer liveth ;” with Paul, “I know whom I have believed, and 1 am persuaded that he is able to keep that which I have committed to him against that day;" with expiring Stephen, “Lord Jesus, receive my spirit." Accredited instances exemplifying the power
of evangelical principles in making the death-bed happy, together with some remarks guarding the present discussion from mistake and abuse, shall, with the Editor's permission, form the subject of another communication.
SOCINIANISM LEADING TO DEISM.
(Concluded from page 54.)
We have, in a former Number, laid before our readers a few extracts bearing on this subject, from Douglass's “ERRORS REGARDING RELIGION." We now submit the following passages with which that energetic and eloquent writer concludes his view of “The Heresies after the Reformation :"
“The Latitudinarian divines, from the variety of their shades of difference, and from their being the offspring of our own times, or of the later ages that followed the Reformation, excite more attention than perhaps they merit. They are insignificant, both in point of numbers and weight of talents, when compared with the sages and poets who established polytheism, or with the philosophers and the priesthoods who diffused the emanative system over so vast an extent of countries. Heterodoxy is transient as well as limited. It is for ever changing its forın, and varying in the number of individuals that compose it, like the flowing stream, ever receiving fresh accessions without any enlargement, and bearing, in its ceaseless progress, whatever enters its current, into the great receptacle of infidelity or iudifference. Heterodoxy has no positive existence ; its whole being and action consist in the negation of the truth. It has no peculiar principles on which it rests, save the trite and ever-recurring sophism, of reason being the judge of revelation. The absurdities of the Latitudinarian writers have been so well characterized in a variety of publications, and above all, in the work of Archbishop Magee, that little new can be said on the subject, till a new race of heretic writers arise, as fertile in blunders as their predecessors. It has been said, that the vigorous race of polemic divines which the Church of England so long armed and accomplished for spiritual warfare, had perished with War. burton and Horsley; but there are giants still in the land, and no work has surpassed in vigour the admirable publication of Magee, in which, he overwhelms with irresistible learning, argument, and derision, the sophisms of the self-entitled rational divines.
- Heterodoxy is but the dregs of what once was religion and knowledge. It savours of nothing generous, spirit-stirring or ennobling. Socinianism is in no respect the heresy of genius; it presents no views that can inform the understanding, enliven the imagination, or warm and clevate the heart. Of all such it seeks to deprive us, and in return, would present us with nothing but a garbled religion, and a beggarly philosophy.
“ Rational theology is in every respect untenable; it has no definite form, and it rests upon no foundation; the reason which it appeals to, is a counterfeit. It is merely ignorance and presumption under the dis- . guise of reason. True reason is the disciple of revelation, and of inductive philosophy; it admits no tenets which are contrary to facts, or to truths divinely inspired. The spurious reasoning of the Socinians is contradicted alike by facts and by Christianity; the principles which it opposes are not only proclaimed by revelation, but displayed in the government of the world. The analogy between nature and grace, so