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which his text put him in posses- new Edition. Recommended by sea sion, What! are " the lovers of veral Baptist Ministers. pleasure to be allowed free pas
2. Dissertations on Christian Baptism.
In which it is shown, that Antipadoturage in the fields of dissipation,
baptism is in opposition to the Holy in unmolested security, because
Scriptures, and the general Practhey are greater violators of the
tice of the Church of Christ in all moral law than others? It must ages. By the late Rev. Micaiah have been an oversight, rather Towgood. A new Edition. Recomthan a deliberate opinion.
mended by several Ministers. To Again, referring to the divine
which are added, Notes and Illus
trations. operations, as encouraged or re- 3. Essay on Scripture Baptism. In pelled by the reception or rejec- which it is shown, that
Infant Baption of the individual's mind, and tism is destitute of Proof, either state of feeling, it is said, “ the from the Holy Scriptures, or from Holy Spirit is infinitely delicate;" ancient Ecclesiastical Writers. By an expression which, we must con
the late Rev. John Gill, D.D. To fess, struck us as infinitely re
which is prefixed, An Address to the mote from propriety.
impartial Enquirer after Truth, &c.
The friends of what is called We are totally unable to subscribe to the sentiments expressed infant baptism, of late, have main p. 16 and 17, in which a comparison is drawn between the de- gage in controversy on that subgree of evil in theatres and in the ject. It is not uncommon for fashionable libraries of watering
warriors to recover of the wounds places, to the advantage of the received in former combats, and former. In the first place, we are to glance at defeats, long since of opinion that the comparison received, only to feed the rising itself tends to neutralize the feel- ardour for renewed exertions; ing of disgust which ought to be and, therefore, we do not very excited against all public iniqui- much wonder, that a man could ties; for a depraved mind will be found to republish the tract, avail itself of needless distinc- to which that now before us is a tions and niceties of calculation, reply. After its first appearance, by saying, “I do not frequent Dr. Gill entered the field, and the libraries if I do the theatre; - completely repelled the attack, I am not so bad as others." In so completely, that Mr. Towgood the next place, we think that the did not repeat his labours. As author is not correct in his moral
our opponents have republished, arithmetic: and we advise him to
it is but fair that exertion should add the items up again and strike, be met with exertion; and we as we think he must do, a differ
have great pleasure in recoment balance. It could not bave mending Dr. Gill's Reply to Mr, been expected that the author of Towgood's Dissertations on Chrisan " Essay on the Stage," would in tian Baptism, which may be had any way have appeared to justify
of Mr. Button, Paternoster-row, what he had in that work so pro- desirous of buying the truth, and
We think that every one, who is perly condemned.
who may peruse the Dissertations,
should also read the Answer to 1. Reply to the Rev. Micaiah Tou- them. If he only desires to conreference to Christian Baptism. By tinue quietly in his present opithe late Rev. John Gill, D. D. With nion, he may act otherwise, As an Appendix by Joseph Ivimey. A to our judgment of them, we have
no hesitation in declaring, that it | the design, and the due manner is low indeed. They are on points of receiving baptism, must, of newhich affect theology in general, cessity, depend upon what Jesus awfully erroneous; and the title Christ, who instituted it, hath of the book, which asserts, that declared about it. -4thly. It canantipædobaptism is shown to be not be doubted, that he himself in opposition to the Holy Scrip- sufficiently declared, to his first tures, and the general practice and immediate followers, the of the church of Christ in all ages, whole of what he designed should is so remarkably far from the be understood by it, or implied truth, that we must be allowed in it.-5thly. It is of small importo wonder, that men of repecta- tance, therefore, to Christians, to bility could recommend it to the know what the many writers on public. We are not now to learn, this subject, since the time of the that a spirit of bitterness against evangelists and apostles, have afa doctrine, or a party, will, some-firmed; much less can it be the times, induce an individual to op- duty of Christians to be guided pose, in that instance, truth and by what any persons, by their righteousness; and, if he be ac
own authority, or from their own tive as well as violent, he
may ob- imaginations, may teach concerntain, from very respectable men, ing this duty.-6thly. The paswho possess none of his gall, a sages in the New Testament, kind of sanction to some of his which relate to this duty, and deeds, or, at least, to the object they alone, are the original acwhich they were intended to at counts of the nature and end of tain. It is, however, our sincere this institution, and the only audesire, that the important subject thentic declarations, upon which of Christian baptism should al-we, of later ages, can safely deways be investigated in the right pend, being written by the immeway; not to favour our senti- diate followers of our Lord; those ments, but to obtain the truth who were witnesses themselves of concerning it; and we, therefore, the institution, or were instructed most cordially recommend the by those who were so, and join following rules, according to with them in delivering down one which every work on baptism and the same account of this relishould proceed; they are taken gious duty. from Foot's Letters, addressed to We now most solemnly declare, Bishop Hoadley :-- 1st. The re-that, if the immersion of believers ceiving of baptism is not a duty in Christ, were not, alone, Chrisof itself; or a duty apparent to tian' baptism, according to the us from the nature of things; but canons just laid down, we would a duty, made such to Christians immediately reject it; and, if Mr. by the positive institution of Jesus Towgood's sentiments would abide Christ.-2dly. All positive duties, a fair examination according to or duties made such by institu- them, we should immediately tion alone, depend entirely upon adopt them. But we have not the the will and declaration of the least doubt, that what is called person who institutes or ordains infant baptism, is, according to them, with respect to the real de- the New Testament, without a sign and end of them, and, con- shadow of evidence in its favour, sequently, to the due manner of Neither authentic histories nor diperforming them. — 3dly. It is vine revelation will favour the senplain, therefore, that the nature, timents of the Dissertations. The statements are unfair and inaccu- Jesus Christ; and these salutary rate; the reasonings are bold, but effects of the second Adam's virremarkably inconclusive. The tue , are as extensive as the penal author first determines that his ones of the first Adam's sin; that opinions are right, and then tor- is, as it respects infants. 3dly. tures, perhaps without knowing That infants, in consequence of it, the sacred oracles to fit them. this, should be baptized, as bapMore loose, inaccurate, cloudy, tism is the emblem of giving and and delusive interpretations of receiving this life-giving spirit. scripture, we have scarcely ever We should be sorry to misrepreseen. We should tremble for the sent any one; but, if we underark of God, if, on all points, the stand him, this is what our ausacred testimonies were so used. thor has asserted. And here let Nothing would be more easy than it be remembered, that we have to give specimens, for they abound no doubt of the salvation of all in these * Dissertations ;” but let infants, absolutely no doubt what. the public judge, when they have ever. But we will examine this read Mr. Towgood on one side, author, merely as it respects the and Dr. Gill on the other.-We argument for what is called infant will give one example of the rea-baptism. We would ask three soning of this erroneous book; it questions:-Does this salvation, is taken from the 12th and 13th this justification unto life, apply pages:
to ail infants as they are born “Now, the same discourse of into the world, as much as conthe apostle, which represents them demnation and suffering do?-or, (infants) as condemned and suf-. Does this great benefit apply only fering through Adam, represents to all infants who die in infancy? them also as justified and saved by Jesus Christ; for, as by the or to the infants of believers only, offence of one, (Adam,) judg- who so die?-One of these must ment came upon all men to con- be admitted, to the exclusion of demnation: even so, by the righ- the rest. teousness of one, (Christ,) the free 1.-Does justification unto life gift came upon all men to justification of life ; for as, by the disobe apply to all infants, as they are
born into the world, as much so dience of one, many were made sin
as condemnation and suffering ners; so, by the obedience of one, shall many be made righteous.-Aš do?' If so, then all the race of much as to say, the salutary effects man must be saved,- for Adam's of the second Adam's virtue, are as sin has actually brought suffering extensive as the penal ones of the and death upon all;—and, if all first Adam's sin; or, as the malignity infants who are born are actually of that first offence reached even to blessed with the effects of justifiinfants, subjecting them to death ; so, the benefits of Christ's obedience cation, they must all be saved reaches also to infants: justifying, not a child of Adam can be lost,absolving, and restoring them to unless it be maintained that they life.”
are all actually justified and blessThus far Mr. Towgood; and ed with the consequences of it, but he infers, from these premises, afterward lose these benefits and the right of infants to baptism:- perish; which is in direct oppoWe beg leave to remind the rea-sition to scripture, which conder, that it is here asserted, 1st. nects together justification and That infants are condemned, and future glory, Rom. viii. 30. suffer through Adam. 2dly. That 2.-Does this justification apthey are justified and saved by ply only to all infants who die in
infancy? --If so, then the infants men of the cloudy inaccurate of unbelievers are just in as good reasoning of this pamphlet; and a situation as those of believers. it is no mean argument against But, if so, what becomes of the the cause it advocates, that even argument for infant sprinkling, such a learned and acute man as which is taken from the faith of Towgood could find no better eviparents ?--If infants should be dence in its favour. To the work of baptized because they are saved, Dr. Gill before us, an appendix is and if all infants are saved, then added, which contains valuable all should be baptized, without information, and completely reany distinction. It is asserted in futes the confident assertions of the Dissertations, in a note on the that which is subjoined to the 15th page, 1. That God has been Dissertation :-" He that is first pleased to lay himself under a in his own cause seemeth just; but more particular promise of a his neighbour cometh and searchresurrection to future happi-eth him.”—It is our devout wish ness with respect to the in- that the obedience of Christians fants of believers, while those of to the ordinances of the gospel, unbelievers are left more to his should be holy and accurate; and, uncovenanted mercy. 2. That therefore, we most cordially unite baptized children may be sup- with our respectable brethren, in posed to be in more happy cir- recommending this scriptural and cumstances in a future state than learned pamphlet. unbaptized ones. As to the The " Essay on Scripture Bapfirst of these, we do not know tism,” we perceive, is printed what it means if it does not in- from Dr. Gill's Body of Divinity. sinuate that, after all, we are not This statement of our principles, so certain of the future happiness having stood the test of half a of the dear infants of unbelievers, century, requires no encomium as we are of the felicity of the front us. We were much pleased children of believers. The second to find it printed in a separate point, which admits their future, form, and sold at sixpence; as but inferior happiness, we detest, but few persons, comparatively, as too much like the popish doc- can procure the work, of which trine of merit, and, even supere- it constitutes a part. The adrogation, and destitute of the least dress, prefixed, contains some scriptural proof. — Thus, this pointed observations upon the insecond question cannot be the consistency of the reasoning in meaning of the work before us. Mr. Towgood's work, with the
3.--Does this justification un principles of the ministers who to life, apply only to the infants have recommended it, considered of believers who die in infancy?-- both as Calvinists and Protestant If so, two things follow: the first dissenters. chills our blood.-It is, that all
We think the following parathe dying infants of unbelievers graph deserves attention, as it perish. The second is, that it proves how completely at vadoes not apply to those children riance pædobaptists, of different of believers who grow up to adult communions, and even of the age; and so, according to this, same communion, are with each they should not be baptized till other, on the subject of scripture they have received justification testimony in reference to infant unto life. This is only a speci- baptism:
“ It is a little singular that, at the | lutely necessary. Does it mean that very time that congregational Pæ- Christ really instituted baptism? dobaptists are declaring that the Then they must have learned it from practice of immersing professed be- tradition. Does it mean that, after Lievers has no support from the scrip- considering the subject attentively, tures: yea, that it is in direct oppo- they think it most probable that insition to them; that a Roman Ca- fants were baptized? Then they tholic Pædobaptist, the Rev. John acknowledge that a very important Lingard, in his Strictures on Dr. part of the doctrine of Christ is left Marsh's comparative view of the unrecorded in the scripture.' churches of England and Rome, con- “ The Baptists are really under tends, that there is no other foun- great obligations to Mr. Lingard for dation for infant baptism than tra- defending them thus powerfully, dition, on which the church of Rome though, doubtless, unintentionally! founds the practice; that the church The celebrated lexicographer, Johnof England, in rejecting the autho- son, whom no one will suspect of an rity of tradition, has no proper ground indifference to forms and ceremofor baptizing infants. Mr. Lingard nies in religion, expressing himself says, that the church of England concerning Roman Catholics, says, teaches the validity of infant baptism They may think that what is merely because she speaks of such as receive ritual deviations from the primitive baptismrightly!' Mr. Lingard, there- mode, may be admitted upon the fore, asks, But where did she learn ground of convenience; and I think this doctrine? Certainly not from they are as well warranted to make the scriptures: for it is not recorded this alteration, as we are to substiin the scriptures: it could only be tute sprinkling in the room of ancient from tradition.'
baptism.'” “ Dr. Marsh, it seems, had observed, ! But our twenty-seventh
This Essay, with the address article
is so far from resting the prac- prefixed, is said to be published tice of infant baptism on the autho- as an “ antidote" to the “Disser: rity of tradition, that it places the tations of Mr. Towgood." Cerpractice on a totally different foot- tainly, the unscriptural positions, ing. The baptism of young children, erroneous statements, and unjust says the article, is in anywise to be representations contained in that retained in the church, as most work, required such a powerful agreeable to the institution of Christ.' To this, Mr. Lingard replies, • This counteraction. We know of no ought not to excite our surprise. It tract more calculated for general would, indeed, have been an extra- circulation. ordinary oversight in the founders of the modern church of England, after they had rejected tradition in their sixth article, they had appealed LITERARY INTELLIGENCE. to its authority in the twenty-seventh. But men do not always act up to their professions. It may, at times, Preparing for Publication. be convenient to say one thing and The best and most effectual Method of do another. They had agreed to preaching Christ. A Discourse preached retain infant baptism: it was, there before the half-yearly association of the fore, necessary to rest it on some Hampshire Independent Churches, Sep ground. On scripture they could not :tember 20, 1815, at Newport, Isle of for it is not taught in scripture. The Wight, by Thomas Durant Poole. best expedient which remained, was A Plea for Primitive Communion, oc. to rest it on its agreement with the casioned by the Rev. Robert Hall's recent institution of Christ. But what is publication, entitled, Terms of Communion. meant by this agreement? I regret that Dr. Marsh thought it foreign Story of what happens every Day; ad
The Brothers; or, Consequences ; or, A from his subject to explain it: to me, dressed to that most useful part of the
h an explanation seems abso- community, the labouring poor.