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me to be seated behind him in the pulpit, he gave out a verse to be sung: after which he endeavoured to confront what I had said in a very vehement and agitated manner. He declared, if there were not three Gods, there were three Divine Subsistences; and though it was a mystery, it must be believed. With respect to the atonement, he said, God's justice must be satisfied. He denied that the Methodists taught the doctrine of the imputation of Christ's merits; said such an idea was not to be found in the Scriptures; that man was further from God, than God was from man; yet God had need of being reconciled. He declared that hell-fire was material; and as for heaven, we knew nothing about it: had an angel come down to tell us what it was? He took care that I said no more; begged of me to excuse him, saying it was his congregation; wished my opinions might prevail, if they were true; said I had acted nobly, shook hands with me in the most cordial manner, and bid me farewell.
Many people (as I afterwards learnt) felt more for me, than I felt for myself. I was confident it would cause a great inquiry into the doctrines of the New Church, and that good would be produced in the end, especially as I had acted in perfect moderation. Indeed a spirit of inquiry has already commenced, and several of the congregation have expressed their approbation of what I advanced. The whole town seems to be in a ferment, and the peculiar circumstances of the case supply matter of discourse to almost every individual who can speak on religious subjects.
The Society in Mansfield consists of eleven persons, some of whom have read the doctrines for several years. They all appear to be worthy members of the Church, and conduct themselves in such an orderly manner, as to excite no prejudice against the doctrines by their life. An appointment was made to meet the friends alone on Monday evening the 18th, at one of their houses; but this coming to the knowledge of others, about forty assembled, as many almost as the house would hold. After singing and prayer, I sat down and explained the nature of the doctrines to them as well and as plainly as I could. I showed them the nature of the spiritual sense of the Holy Word, and explained the passage of the ten virgins, Matt. xxv. 1 to 12; and also the parable of the man travelling into a far country, yer. 14 to 29 of the same chapter. I showed them that the whole tenor
of the Word in its spiritual sense related to the formation of the will and understanding of man in the order of heaven, and thus to the conjunction of man with the Lord by love or good in the will, by wisdom or truth in the understanding, and by regulating his conversation and actions according to those heavenly principles; and thus that every affection and thought in the natural man, which is hostile to such heavenly life, and capable of being stirred up by temptation, must be subdued. This lecture was received, I believe, by every one present with great affection and delight. And though I spoke to them more than an hour, and many of them had to stand, yet several said they could have staid all night to hear such doctrine. I told them I had some Catalogues of the author's works, in which they would find these things abundantly treated of, to give to those who would accept of them. These they received with the same degree of thankfulness, as they would a present of considerable value. They shook hands with me in the most cordial manner, and seemed heartily to wish that my labours might be made successful. These were strangers to the doctrines before, equally unknown to the friends as to myself. They had, no doubt, heard me in the Methodist Chapel the day before; and I believe a far greater interest was attached to the doctrines by the Methodist preacher's opposition, than would have been the case, had he remained silent. One young woman, who attended the meeting, came a considerable distance she was an hour too soon: she said she must hear me, as she was so much pleased with what she had heard the day before. She further observed, I had told them they must judge for themselves; and that, she said, was what she liked. Several declared, they felt as if they were "made over again." Most of them had never heard the Word preached according to the doctrines of the New Church: and they seemed to feel confident, that, if they had somebody to preach the doctrines in Mansfield, they would soon be increased to a large Society. Indeed I perceive very plainly, that able preachers are much wanted; that the harvest is great, but the labourers are few. May the Lord of the harvest send forth labourer's into his vineyard!
I left Mansfield on Tuesday the 19th, and returned to Sheffield, where I had a profitable meeting with the Society the same evening and the following. On Thursday morning I set off for Leeds, and arrived there at eleven o'clock. With some difficul
ty a place was procured for me to preach in, capable of holding between two and three hundred. Bills were circulated, stating that three lectures would be delivered on the heavenly doctrines of the New Jerusalem, as taught by Emanuel Swedenborg. At the first lecture in the morning about fifty genteel looking persons attended, when I dwelt chiefly on the Divinity and the Humanity, their unition in the person of the Lord, and man's salvation thereby. In the afternoon we had about two hundred, and the like number in the evening. After mentioning the chief subjects treated on in the preceding lectures, I told them the Word had a spiritual sense throughout, and explained a few passages to them according to that sense. I told them further, that we should continue in the human form after death, and quoted the sixth chapter of the Revelation respecting the souls seen by John under the altar; which passage I find to be very serviceable for the purpose. The greatest attention was paid to all that was advanced, as far as I can judge. And indeed I have the same to say of all the people that I have addressed since I left Manchester. I have not heard of a single individual here objecting to what has been delivered, but of many who greatly approve of the doctrines, though they never heard them before. I believe my visit to this place will be of great use. I met the friends again on Monday night: I showed them the importance of the new dispensation, and that there was not a single doctrine of the New Church that did not apply to the life. I trust a very great Society of New Church people will be collected here in a short time. I drank tea with a local preacher in the new connection of Methodists, who seems to have embraced the new doctrines cordially and fully. Another local preacher in the new connection of Methodists has read some of the writings; he thinks no one can object to the doctrine of the trinity as taught therein, and seems to have a clear view of some other most important truths. On meeting with him at a friend's house, he requested me to explain several passages in the Word and Epistles; which I did very much to his satisfaction. He is a modest, intelligent young man, of good speech, and no doubt will be very useful, when thoroughly acquainted with the doctrines.
I arrived at Hull on Friday the 29th, and soon found myself in the midst of a most amiable and affectionate Society. They
hold their meetings at present in a large room, until they obtain legal possession of their Chapel, which I understand has long been the subject of a suit in chancery, now nearly terminated. Mr. King, at whose house I resided during my stay in Hull, usually reads the service for them on a Sunday. Heavenly affection seems to flow with every word he utters, and his manner is simple and dignified at the same time. On Sunday, the 1st of December, I preached three times to good congregations, considering the size of the place: and though I had a severe cold, which much incommoded me, yet I am happy to say, all seemed very well satisfied. On Monday evening, two gentlemen from Manchester made their appearance at Mr. King's. Their unexpected arrival was a great pleasure to me; and their company delighted our Hull friends, I had almost said, beyond measure.
On Sunday the 8th, I again preached three times. In the afternoon and evening the place was full, upwards of three hundred being present, among whom were many entire strangers to the doctrines. The friends here think a great deal of good will result from my visit, and they seem to have the highest opinion of the Missionary institution. They conceive, that great benefit will arise to those who already receive the doctrines, and particularly to new recipients. Several of this latter class at Hull have expressed their thankfulness to me in the most affectionate and obliging manner, for the greater light and confirmation of the doctrines they received through my preaching. And not only the new recipients of the doctrines have made these acknowledgments, but many also who have read the doctrines a great number of years. One most important use of the Missionary is effected by the relation of his visits to other societies. These relations excite a very strong feeling among the members of Society in one part towards all others throughout the country; and I have no doubt will ultimately produce a general combination of interest in the New Church at large. The intention of printing a Report of the Missionary proceedings is a good one, and certainly great use will result from it. When a few of the readers are collected together, they are desirous of being known to their brethren in other parts of the world. A Missionary Report therefore will serve this purpose to a great degree. The friends at Hull are particularly pleased that they begin to be noticed by their brethren in other parts of the kingdom. They say they were a long
time unnoticed by any, excepting Mr. Proud. I have no doubt but this Society will be one among the most flourishing in the New Church.
On taking leave of this happy Society, my sensations were those of pleasure and regret; of pleasure, because I have reason to believe, that its members in general are in the true and genuine affection of the heavenly doctrines of the New Church, and desire to bring them into life, in which case alone they can be truly fixed as living principles in the mind;—of regret, because I could wish always to live with people so much in the love, acknowledgment, and life of true religion. I feel very much my great unworthiness of the kind attention and affection which this peopie have shown towards me. But they love the truth and good of the New Church and though I am an unworthy messenger of this Church, yet they have manifested very great affection and regard for me on her account. From what I have witnessed in this town, and in other places, since I undertook my present journey, I feel a degree of confidence, that the Lord is preparing many sincere people for the reception of the heavenly doctrines; and as the number of real members of the New Church increases, the happiness of mankind will be advanced in the same proportion.
From Hull I returned to Leeds on Tuesday the 10th of December, and the next day reached Addingham by ten in the forenoon. Mr. and Mrs. Metcalfe gave me a hearty welcome, and received me in a very polite manner. Mr. Dean came after dinner, and invited me to his house, which he begged me to consider as my home during my stay at Addingham. Here I experienced every kind attention from Mr. Dean and his family. I was, however, sorry to find, that the efforts made to establish the Church in Addingham had not been crowned with the desired success. The place of worship is a very good building for the purpose, well pewed, and calculated to hold three hundred perA spacious room over it serves for a school.
On Friday the 13th I went to Skipton, in order to preach in a room belonging to Mr. Garth, a schoolmaster. About twenty persons only assembled, no public notice having been given; and I gave them a lecture, without taking a text. I endeavoured to show them the nature of the New Church doctrines, as far as I well could in the compass of one discourse. What the general effect of this lecture was, I cannot say but a gentleman came to