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bear directly on the point under consideration, and clearly prove that those who die in their sins, are absolutely excluded from heaven, and shall never be suffered to enter into the kingdom of glory. We know nothing about the state of the dead but what God has told us in his word, and what he has there told us we are bound to believe, because we know it is infallibly true. He has there told us some plain and undeniable facts, which confirm the construction given of the texts just quoted. He has there told us, that Judas was the son of perdition, that he did not go to heaven, but to his own place, and that it would have been good for him, if he had never been born, which plainly implies that he will never enter into the kingdom of heaven. He has told us, that he raised up Pharaoh, hardened his heart, and fitted him for destruction, that his name might be praised for his conduct towards him, in both time and eternity. He has caused it to be recorded, by the pen of inspiration, that Korah, Dathan and Abiram, Balaam and the men of Sodom and Gomorrah, are examples, suffering the vengeance of eternal fire. And he who holds the keys of death and of hell has told us, that Dives lived and died in sin, and immediately lifted up his eyes in torments. Whether the account of Dives be literal or figurative, it equally proves, that the wicked are driven away in their wickedness, excluded from heaven, and doomed to destruction. If we may believe the declarations, the doctrines, and the facts contained in the Bible, we may as confidently believe, that some wicked men have been driven away in their wickedness, and are now in a state of misery and despair; as we may

believe, that Enoch, Abraham, Moses, and Elijah are now in the kingdom of glory. We know of no doctrine, ever broached among those who call themselves Christians, so absurd and unscriptural as the novel notion, that all wicked men, even the most vile and profligate, when they leave the world, go immediately to heaven and enjoy endless felicity there.

Hence, thirdly, this novel scheme of universal salvation is extremely licentious and dangerous. It directly tends to destroy all religion and morality. It teaches, that holiness and piety are empty names; that repentance, faith, humility, and devotion, are no other than hypocrisy, pride, and self-righteousness; and that the most irreligious, abandoned, and profligate sinners go immediately to heaven, and sit down with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob in the kingdom of glory. Such a doctrine as this is replete with infinite mischief. It strikes at the root of all experimental religion. It destroy's all moral distinction between virtue and vice. It takes off every restraint from the corruption of the human heart, and opens the flood-gates of iniquity. It renders the prophets, Christ, and the apostles the ministers of sin; and speaks peace to all the wicked, to whom God says, there is no peace. It has every mark of a damnable doctrine. Some seem reluctant to pronounce absolutely upon its corrupt and fatal tendency, and choose only to say, if it be true, then those who deny it, are as safe as those who embrace it. But we ought rather to say, if there be no future state, then we are all safe, but not otherwise. Admit a future state, and there remains no room to doubt, whether God will make a difference between

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him that serveth him, and him that serveth him not; between him that sweareth, and him that feareth an oath. The very supposition that no distinction will be made between the righteous and wicked in a future state, supercedes the necessity and even propriety of a general Judgment. Why should God appoint a day, in which to judge the world in righteousness, if no persons are to be judged, no characters to be examined, and no displays of retributive justice to be made! Some of the most sensible, learned, and respectable Universalists despise and condemn this novel scheme of universal salvation. Dr. Chauncy in particular deserves to be mentioned in this connexion. In his Preface to the Extracts which he made from the writings of noted Authors on his side of the question, he condemns, in the strongest terms, the novel and licentious sentiment, that all men, however vile and vicious, go immediately to heaven, without passing through a previous state of extreme sufferings. He remarks; "It may not be unseasonable to add here, that it is fully and freely acknowledged, by all the above writers, that many among the sons and daughters of Adam, will pass through a state of unutterable misery; before they will be prepared for, and admitted to the joys of God's presence, in the heavenly world. This I judge proper to mention, because the doctrine of universal salvation has, in this, and some other towns, been held forth by a stranger, (meaning Murray) who has, of himself, assumed the character of a preacher, in direct contradiction not only to all the beforementioned writers, but to the whole tenor of the New Testament books, from their beginning to

end. According to this preacher, a man may go to heaven, notwithstanding all the sins he has been guilty of in the course of his life. Such a doctrine looks very like an encouragement to libertinism, and falls in with the scheme of too many in this degenerate age, who, under the pretence of promoting religion, undermine it at the very root. It is certainly fitted to this end, and has already had this effect upon many; especially of our younger people, who, by means of it, have lost all sense of religion, and given themselves up to the most criminal excesses! If this kind of preaching is encouraged, it may prove as hurtful to civil society as to religion. Would to God it might be realized as an undoubted truth, that there is the same reason, from scripture, to believe there is a HELL as a HEAVEN. And those who are infidels as to the former, would do well to take care lest they should know, from their own experience, the horrors of that dreadful place."

Since the human heart naturally prefers darkness to light and error to truth, there is a propriety in addressing the hopes and fears of men, and giving divine truths all the weight and influence, which they derive from the motives of Eternity. This the Apostles tell us was their practice. "Knowing the terror of the Lord, we persuade men." Directed by their example, there needs no apology for addressing those, who are particularly concerned in this serious subject, and warning them against the fatal dangers to which they are exposed.

There are many, at this day, who are labouring to reason themselves out of the belief of all truth, both

human and divine; and boast of arriving to a certainty that all things are uncertain. But it may be questioned whether the human mind, which is formed to see and feel the force of truth, will permit any man to approach nearer to perfect Scepticism, than perfect knowledge. By an habit of resisting truth, however, some may have unsettled their minds respecting divine things, and become exposed to embrace error instead of truth, in matters of religion. And for this reason, they are very liable to fall in with the delusive scheme of universal salvation, which has a tendency to diffuse some glimmering rays of light in their dark and desponding minds. But they are entreated to awake from their reveries, and attend to the great realities with which they are surrounded and connected. Eternal rewards and punishments are substantial realities, whether they them believe to be so or not. By shutting their eyes against them, their danger is not in the least diminished, but greatly augmented. The period is approaching when they must be thoroughly awakened from their delusive dreams. The solemn scenes of Eternity will draw the curtain aside, and open upon their astonished minds such awful realities as, at a distance, made Felix and Belshazzar tremble, and as will more terribly shock their guilty souls, when their presence can no longer be resisted.

There is a larger number than these, perhaps, who are making swift and bold advances in the cause of Infidelity, and leave no methods unemployed to discredit divine Revelation, and subvert the foundations of Christianity. They need not tell the world their motives. Were they not convinced that the Bible

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