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is by faith: and when Jesus came to us to show us the way, the truth, and the life
, we cried out,“ We will not have this man to reign over us !” “We will have no way but our own! “ We will have no king but Cæsar !" and this king was sin, for it“ reigned in our mortal body” (Rom. vi. 12): and it had dominion over us, and why? because we were under the law, and not under grace (vi. 14).
How then came we forth from so inextricable a dungeon ? First of all, the grace of God, given to us in the midst of our misery, made us know and comprehend our real estate : we could not be saved, till we knew that we were lost, we could not be raised up, till we knew that we were dead. We saw that in us there was nothing good, we acknowledged our total depravily: we opened our eyes, and we saw that we were amongst the dead. We now knew what it was to stand in a state of nature, and not of grace, before the most High God: the whole weight of his law, full of severity, justice, and holiness, and requiring perfection in the whole man, we now saw was that mountain that kept us down in wrath and condemnation : “ I was alive without the law once; but when the commandment came, sin revived, and I died; and the commandment which was ordained to life, I found to be unto death!" This is the death that precedeth the life of the sinner: and if the heretic should jeer at the notion of that sword which gives life in the act of slaying, we refer to the Scriptures of truth, and there we find “that the word of God is quick (i. e. full of life, Swv), and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow ?” This was the sword which in slaying gave life; this was the word which searched our inner man, and pierced to the dividing between soul and spirit, manifesting to our own consciences that there was nothing but death in us, and no power to save ourselves : but then we turned from ourselves to the Lord our righteousness; we looked no longer at poor human nature, dead and buried, and sealed as in the grave, but we looked to Jesus; and when we heard the voice of the Lord our Righteousness, crying to us to believe in him as our resurrection, we were enabled to believe, because God had given us the power, and so we came forth in the righteousness and life of Jesus, who had died, and was alive, and has life in himself. Thus, then,“ God, who is rich in mercy, for his great love wherewith he loved us, even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ (by grace we are saved), and hath raised us up together, and hath made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus!
But, according to the old objection of Antichrist, this is the doctrine of " licentiousness;" and Mr. Campbell is offended at the idea that the Holy Spirit “ may be busily at work with some drunken sot, or some vile debauchee." Alas! has it come to this, that one who has run the round of theology, and has been occupied for fifteen years at least in “restoring Christianity,” should at last finish his career of improvements with denouncing as licentious that faith which “believes in Him that justifieth the ungodly.” Paul declared it to be “a saying worthy of all acceptation' that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners," and amongst sinners he considered himself chief. He was something more than “a vile sot” when he persecuted the Church, and compelled, by his persecutions, the saints to blaspheme; and there was nothing lovely or acceptable in his life and conduct, when the Lord, the Spirit of Life, irresistibly converted him in the full height of his iniquity. All that Paul could see in his own case, was that “Jesus Christ had in him, "first (or chiefest] shewn forth all long suffering, for a pattern to them which should hereafter believe on him to life everlasting." And it was in this faith, that he continually inculcated those doctrines which Mr. Campbell has rejected. Lest, however, Mř. Campbell should be left entirely unconfuted by the very words of Scripture, we have the precise case which he has selected, selected also by Paul, as one of those instances in which the Holy Spirit had been“ at work,” in other words, had effected a change from death unto life. “Be not deceived, neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind, nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God; and such were some of you ; but ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified, in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the spirit of our God” (Cor.
Thus does the word of God confound all heresies : for whatever self-righteous may teach against the righteousness of faith, this stands true for ever, that “not by works of righteousness which we have done, but by his mercy does God save us, through the washing of regeneration, and the renewing of the Holy Ghost."
Of the doctrine of justification Mr. Campbell teaches nothing but confusion. It is evidently his intention to “cast down the foundations” on which “ the righteous rest their hopes. In his 66 Christianity Restored,” Mr. Campbell thus states the case :
JUSTIFICATION ASCRIBED TO SEVEN CAUSES." “ In examining the New Testament, we find that a man is said to be justified by faith (Rom. v. 1; Gal. ii. 16; iii. 24). ‘Justified freely by his grace' (Rom. iii. 24; Tit. iii. 7). • Justified by his blood' (Rom. v. 9). Justified by works? (James ii. 21, 24, 25). "Justified in or by the name of the Lord Jesus' (1 Cor. vi. 11). Justified by Christ' (Gal. ii. 16). “Justified by knowledge' (Is. liii. 11). It is God that justifies by these seven means, by Christ, his name, his blood ; by knowledge, grace, faith, and by works.”
On the sovereignty of divine grace, preceding or anticipating the will of man, Mr. Campbell thus expresses himself: “ All who resolve individual salvation into a mere act of sovereignty; disarm the Gospel of all its power, make its author insincere, its promises and its arguments deceitful, an instrument of guile and double meanings, a parade of empty professions to save appearances, and, worse than all, mock our miseries and tantalise our feelings.”—Mill. Harb. i. 237.
On the distinction of persons in the Godhead, Mr. Campbell seems to be a Sabellian. Mr. Campbell has made great discoveries on this head; for, according to his theory, the written word is the Spirit. " Besides what is written in the book (Bible), there can be no new light communicated to the mind; for all the converting power of the Holy Spirit is exhibited in the Word” (Mill. Harb. ii. 396). This theory is more fully explained by Mr. Jones : “The heresy consists in denying the necessity of any divine influence to give the Word of God its proper or saving effect, in the conversion of a sinner. The persons who advocate this sentiment, contend that the written Word is the Spirit (and not the sword of the Spirit, as the Apostle teaches, Eph. vi. 17); that the Holy Scriptures, or writings of the New Testament, are the drawings ” of which Christ speaks (John vi. 44), inasmuch as they contain the varied persuasions of redeeming love to come unto and believe in him, to the saving of the soul. According to this notion, when it is said that ' faith is the gift of God,' all that is intended by the expression is, that God gives the Holy Scriptures, conveying to us the knowledge of the facts and doctrines which we are called to believe; and, consistently enough with this, they maintain that every one who reads the Scriptures, or hears them read, has a complete ability to hear, believe, embrace, and obey the Gospel of Christ though dead in trespasses and sins; and that, consequently, no other divine power is needed to open the understanding, and influence the will and affections, than what is contained in the written word.”
Thus has this presumptuous disputant come to deny the whole government of God the Holy Ghost in the Church of Christ. Christianity with him is an exercise of the reason, believing the fact that Christ died and rose again ; whoever believes this fact and is immersed is saved ; there is no regeneration by the Holy Spirit, no change of the will and the understanding, no altered affection in the believer. The believer is not justified by faith, but by a choice out of seven categories; he is not taught by the Holy Spirit, for the Bible is the Holy Spirit, and if he reads that he will be drawn to believe the fact that Christ is the Messiah. There is no exercise or Divine sovereignty in the calling of sinners; man is not fallen in Adam; and amongst his seven methods of justification, he may be justified by knowledge, or by good works. But there is no salvation without baptism. He that believes the fact that Jesus is the Son of God cannot be saved unless he is immersed in water: that is absolutely indispensable. He need not be regenerate; indeed, according to the ordinary ideas, regeneration is a fable; but he must be immersed: the Church of God must be resurrected through water. This is the mystery of mysteries. No water, no salvation. Regeneration and remission of sins is the act of immersion. All the fathers teach this truth, all tradition confirms it; this is the fundamental doctrine of Campbellism. This is, in fact, every thing!
Thus then has Campbellism adopted one leading error of Puseyism without its professed sanctity, and all the worst impieties of the Socinians without their philosophy. The rapid inroads which this sect has made upon others in America, is to be attributed ehiefly to the talents, energy, and eloquence of Mr. Campbell himself; to the com
manding station which he holds amongst his coadjutors ; to the popularity of his writings, and the popular nature of the sentiments which he promulgates. He is, as it were, a Marius amongst the aristocrats of the pastoral order ; he has raised the standard of defiance against the dignitaries of sect, and by constantly attacking, with some good arguments, and many bad ones, the pastorate of the Presbyterian, Independent, and Episcopalian churches, and by ridiculing all collegiate preparations of the ministry as means of deception and fraud, he has made himself the nucleus for the democratic propensity which, more or less, is lurking in the minds of most persons within the United States. For many a long year has he now been blowing the ram's horn throughout the coasts of his nation, to announce that he has discovered the secret of the corruptions of Christianity, and the sure method of restoring it to its primitive purity; and as his system, in its gradual development, has pleased the natural man, by its spiritual licence, and the political man by its opposition to established things, he has succeeded in gathering as large a host of " disciples” as his highest ambition could desire.
But it is evident that Campbellism may not now be stationary. The leader has brought his disciples up to the confines of chaos, and they will ere long fly off into the abyss of deism, pantheism, and atheism. Whilst Mr. Campbell holds the sceptre he may, perhaps, keep them for a while obedient to the dogma of immersion; but his emancipated followers cannot be expected to abide in the trammels of this last superstition : better instructed in the mystery of “ Christianity restored,” they will soon find their wings, and soar far away into the elastic atmosphere of “pure reason' and pure infidelity.
The Christian Observer professes to be
Among the first, and most momentous in its consequences, of Mr. Gladstone's deflections from the truth, is the assumption of what is styled apostolical succession, as absolutely, and under all possible circumstances, necessary to the validity of the ministerial commission. We do not derogate from the importance of the REGULAR TRANSMISSION OF THE SACERDOTAL COMMISSION ; but in what paragraph of the New Testament? in what authenticated document among the
remains' of the apostles ?—and most assuredly we may add, in what article, or homily, of the Church of England is it enjoined, asserted, or intimated, that no man, under any possible circumstances, can lawfully administer the Christian sacraments, and exercise the Christian ministry, unless in the order of a lineal episcopal succession from some one of the apostles to the individual who con. ferred his commission upon him ?”
Here is succession, in good earnest, regular, lineal, ministerial, apostolical
, episcopal, and (beyond all!) SACERDOTAL! All this is allowed, and vindicated: what, then, is denied ? Why, just thus much, and no more; that such succession, how. ever important, is still absolutely, and
CONTROVERSY OF THE CLERGY AT
under all possible circumstances, necessary not in his own parish, but in the parish of to the validity of the clerical commission! the vicar of St. Mary, it was requisite to Truly our brother (whom we more love gain the consent of Mr. Sandys, the Vicar for his spirit, than commend for his theo- of St. Mary, to the consecration of the logy) strains out the gnat, but swallows chapel in the first place; and next, to his down the camel.
renunciation of the right of naming the officiating minister. A long treaty was now opened with Mr. Sandys, detailed with most revolting minuteness in the correspondence before us, in which it
seems pretty clear, that Mr. Atkinson, (See Eph. iv. 31, 32).
the proprietor of the chapel, and Mr.
Thurlow, the soliciting clergyman, were A CORRESPONDENT desires that we should endeavouring to gain the important connotice a voluminous strife between two cessions from Mr. Sandys, which he was clergymen of Beverley, in Yorkshire; unwilling to grant. Mr. Sandys offered but of that sad affair we can only give the to appoint Mr Thurlow the first minister briefest statement. It would appear,
of the chapel when consecrated; but that in the town of Beverley, there had insisted on reserving the right of subsebeen built a costly chapel in the parish quent appointment to the vicars of St. of St. Mary, which chapel purported to Mary's parish, his successors. The be a place of worship for a projected soliciting parties now attempted to get sect called, by anticipation, « Church the power into their own hands, by Methodists." The fabricators of that naming five trustees for future appointsect built their chapels before they had ments; but their wishes on this head collected their partisans; and it so fell were defeated by the steady refusal of out, that when the chapels were opened, Mr. Sandys to allow the casting vote of a series of quarrels amongst the managers
the five to be selected from Mr. Thurlow's and hired preachers very soon dissipated friends. the airy dream of“ Church Methodism;" At length, when the matter could not and left of it nothing remaining but the thus be arranged, the soliciting parties bricks and timber, and the builder's agreed to pull down the chapel, and to accounts, which pressed heavily upon remove it about a hundred yards distant the chief managers—the Messrs. Mark into Mr. Thurlow's parish. On the Robinson and Anthony Atkinson. Mr. ceremony of laying the foundation stone Anthony Atkinson, it appears, became of the removed chapel, Mr. Thurlow responsible for the whole debt; and Mr. made a speech of that semi-religious Mark Robinson gave up his business for character, which evangelical clergyman the express purpose of collecting sub- are accustomed to utter on such occascriptions to liquidate the debt. În this sions. “ After maturely weighing the occupation Mr. Mark Robinson acquired subject,” said the reverend orator, “ and an unenviable celebrity ; but died in the contemplating the matter in all its bearmidst of his labours, having been killed ings, I am able, without hesitation, to by a fall from a coach in one of his feel and to state that the erection of journeys of solicitation. The whole this chapel is most necessary for the burthen now fell upon Mr. Atkinson, carrying out of my plans, for the welfare without a coadjutor. In process of time, of those souls whom I am bound to cure however, on the death of the late incum- for, and whom I desire may be saved in bent of Beverley Minster, the Rev. Christ for ever.” Much is said about Charles Augustus Thurlow, Vicar of national religion, national godliness, and Scaleby, in the North Riding, was ap- " the due administration, and faithful pointed to the vacant incumbency of and devout reception of the holy sacraBeverley Minster, by the trustees of the ment;" and the national church is delate Mr. Simeon. As soon
clared to be “ that apostolic church, the gentleman came to Beverley, it seems chief defender and preserver of the to have been suggested to him, that the Christian faith; the great guardian and vacant chapel of the “ Church Metho- protector of real freedom and pure truth, dists” might, with advantage to himself, not only for England, but for Europe and to the town in which
he laboured, and the world.” But amidst this display be appropriated to the worship of the of parish religion, and amidst all these Establishment. But as this chapel stood Jewish views of the Christian faith, Mr.
56 I sup:
Thurlow did not forget to throw out and he now very broadly brings forth as some very intelligible sentences of bitter- accusations, that which he had before ness against Mr. Sandys, who had, by suggested in the form of subdued hints. not acceding to the full extent of Mr. The controversy is, on both sides, a sad Thurlow's wishes,“ compelled” him
exhibition of antipathy and anger; and and the proprietor to remove the chapel must be followed by the worst conseinto the next parish. In this part of his quences. Mr. Thurlow says, speech, Mr. Thurlow misapplies Scrip- posed I was transacting business with ture in a way little to be admired. In a gentleman.” Mr. Sandys concludes his speaking of the removal of the chapel, two fiery columns of resentment with he hopes it is a determination, which these words—“I commend to his serious though 6 for the present it seemeth study the lesson which he has now regrievous, will nevertheless yield the peace- ceived ; it will, I trust, teach him a lowlier able fruit of righteousness;" and though estimate of himself, and tend to make doing all he can to express his resent- him a humbler and better man.” ment against his opponent, whom he What is the lesson to be learned from designates without naming; he adds, this clerical strife ? That evangelical “Oh! I would write as an inscription clergymen are frequently placing themover all that concerns this matter, and selves in situations of much embarrassI would have it recorded as the motto of ment; and that the positions of power our present undertaking- Old things and dignity which they enjoy, can but are passed away ; behold all things are ill repay them for the wounds which their
This really is not comely ; for it consciences are destined to feel in their is obvious that if Mr. Thurlow had been warfare with the elements of this world. sincere in his wishes of peace and quiet- Mr. Thurlow stands in high repute ness, he would not have selected this
amongst the evangelical clergy; but public occasion thus to shoot out his because he has made himself the leader arrows against the Vicar of St. Mary. of a party, and has chosen to express The
way to keep peace would have been, the antipathies of that party against a not to have alluded to the difficulties clergyman, disliked for his politics by which had arisen in the appropriation of the leading inhabitants of his town, he the chapel. Had Mr. Thurlow followed has brought himself into a predicament that course, all would have been well. truly painful for a Christian to occupy.
Mr. Sandys did not, however, choose We enter not into the merits of this to sit down quietly under these sharp controversy; the contending evidence sentences of his reverend brother, and of the opponents is not that which we called a public meeting in the chancel of we care for; but it is the controversy St. Mary's Church, to explain the whole itself, which is the matter to be deplored. affair - ab ovo.” The speech which he 6 Better is a handful with quietness, delivered on that occasion he published than both the hands full with travail in the provincial newspapers, bringing and vexation of spirit.” The evangelical forward some unpleasant circumstances clergy have indeed, sometimes, possession which had occurred in the diplomacy of of power, and they are masters and lords the soliciting parties with himself. of their parishes sometimes ; and they
To this Mr. Thurlow replied in a two- are treated sometimes with respect; but column advertisement, closely printed; their power is in the world, and their and in this letter, he seems to be con- lordship is in the world, and their respect vinced that his character must be a suffi- is from the world, and their parish is the cient answer to any thing that the Vicar world : in such a diocese, then, how can of St. Mary may be pleased to insinuate.
they expect to keep their place without * I can scarcely believe that any one feeling the curse that is in the world ? would dare to imply that my conduct How can they expect to enjoy the good was dishonourable. Mr. Thurlow's things “ where Satan's seat is,” and not statement, though delivered in the experience the confusion, distress, and anlofty tone of an offended superior, does guish of his dominion? The old enemy not seem so fully to meet the case as knows how to humiliate the professed might be wished. Mr. Sandys again servants of Jesus, who meddle with his takes up the pen; and with an evident province; and they, who, calling themincrease of acrimony, spares neither Mr. selves children of light, do, nevertheless, Thurlow nor his coadjutor. In short, seek the emoluments of the regions of all semblance of courtesy is laid aside, darkness, must expect to meet with the