Imágenes de páginas

abrogation of any law comprising this right, as has been made to appear. It consequently follows, that there is a perfect harmony on this point between the Old and New Testaments. And, further; when we take into consideration, that all Christians, in all ages, have “ drank into the same spirit;"_" have one Lord, one faith, one baptism;"--and have one and the same object in view, viz. God's glory, it must appear evident, that what was proper and duty for Christians under the old dispensation, must be equally proper and duty under the new, circumstances being the same; I say, taking all these things into consideration, I cannot see how it is possible for a Christian, in the discharge of his duty to God, to the great family of mankind, and to himself, to avoid standing in the defence of that life which God has graciously given him, against an attack, unsanctioned by any law, human or divine.

The design of this epistle, Sir, is now accomplished, by the examination of the prominent features of your pamphlet. Many subordinate points on which we differ, have been passed over in silence, as of little consequence, compared with the great subject on which life and death are pending. What has been said, will be a sufficient explanation of my views of your pamphlet; and, I trust, a sufficient warning to others against its errors, and pernicious tendency.

It is much to be regretted, on your own account, as well as that of others, that the subject was not investigated by yourself, in a manner as satisfactory as might have been expected, but for your " very infrm state of health, and press of commercial business,” (p. 8.) Better health, and more leisure, might have spared the necessity of this letter.

That we are all liable to error, unpleasant experience too often proves. Should it appear, hereafter, that any unwarrantable remark has escaped my pen, it will be to me a subject of much and sincere regret. This consolation I certainly have, that I have not intentionally deviated from the path of rectitude; have not, with design, uncharitably censured those whose opinion does not accord with mine; nor taxed them with weakness, (p. 34.) ignorance, (p. 34.) worldliness, (p. 29.) or want of honesty, (p. 27.) nor imputed to themspiritual whoredom,” (p. 43.) or spiritual adultery, (p. 43.) Should any thing that I have said seem severe, I confidently hope that, having in a good degree, the spirit of the sweet singer of Israel, you will most cheerfully adopt his language - Let the righteous smite me, it shall be a kindness; and let him reprove me, it shall be as excellent oil, which shall not break my head." From the purity of your motives, (which is abundantly manifest,) although your “works may be burnt up,” it is believed that you “will be saved, yet so as by fire.”. It is important, my brother, that our works should stand the test of God's holy word. To this end, let us look to the God of all grace, for his Holy Spirit to enlighten our minds, that we may understand the Scriptures, that they may be "& lamp unto our feet, and a light unto our path.” We have the promise of a heavenly guide and guardian, upon the simple condition of a request. Unspeakable privilege ! Astonishing condescension! This is the effect of that “ love which is stronger than death.” Hence that peace, “ which the world can not give,” that spiritual peace," which passeth all understanding.” Of this peace, we, my Christian brother, shall be partakers, if we are the “subjects of the Mediator's kingdom.” We shall experience also the transforming influence of that spirit, whence flow all the streams of love, of goodness, and beneficence; and be changed into the likeness of God's dear Son; while our warmest and tenderest affections will rise to him who has redeemed us by his most precious blood. .

The time approaches, when all that divides brother from brother shall vanish away; when the followers of the Lamb, of every nation and tongue, will be united in one common bond of love; will see “ eye to eye;" will be children of one father, and heirs of one inheritance; and will join in one song to the anointed Saviour. Let us cherish, with all diligence, those affections, (the fruit of the Spirit,) which are to render us meet for the kingdom of heaven, and prepare us to join in the harmony of the redeemed.

With these sentiments, my brother, I conclude: earnestly beseeching the “ father of the spirits of all

flesh, to make you “wise unto salvation ;" to render you a signal and enduring blessing to the world; to give you peace in death, and make your immortality glorious.

· P. S. As this reply was not prompted by the spirit of controversy, and as I am not disposed to cherish that spirit, which is ever “crying give, give," and as the design of this epistle is accomplished; your pamphlet, and the subject of it, are dismissed for ever.


« AnteriorContinuar »