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unable to form the conception. To define, with unexceptionable precision, the boundaries of charity, is a task, for the delicacy and difficulty of which I pretend not to be competent. But boundaries it surely has. And I cannot think that I am chargeable with unwarrantably circumscribing these, when I refuse the claim of unbiassed candour of judgment, or of unimpeachable soundness of moral principle, to the man who DENIES A God !-In the Discourses it is my

endeavour to show, that in the scriptures the claim I have just mentioned is refused to all infidelity of their peculiar discoveries, and to illustrate the principles, on which, as I conceive, this refusal may be justly vindicated. I hope I shall not be found, on a subject as delicate as it is momentous, to have “ spoken wickedly for God," or to have “ darkened counsel by words without knowledge.”

R. W.

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DISCOURSE I.

JOHN III. 18, 19. 66 He that believeth on him is not condemned:

but he that believeth not, is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God. And this is the condemnation, that light is come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil.

I KNOW not why I should conceal, what has led me to the choice of the subject which I have just announced. When names of distinguished eminence are found giving their public sanction to sentiments, of which the trath is more than doubtful, and yet the falsity plausible;-sentiments which, wherever they are admitted without their neces

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sary qualifications, tend to consequences injurious to the best interests of mankind; and when these sentiments, moreover, are arrayed in the charms of a captivating eloquence, and are presented with the tone of confident triumph, with the emphasis and solemnity of oracular wisdom, and, what is still more imposing, with the zealous warmth of real though mistaken philanthropy :-it cannot surely be deemed by any a departure from the proper province of a teacher and guardian of divine truth, to bear his testimony, with equal publicity, against them, and to lift the voice, however comparatively feeble, of honest and faithful warning.

It is but a few weeks, since the following sentences, with every accompaniment that could contribute to recommend the leading sentiment which they contain to inconsiderate applause, and to too unqualified adoption, were delivered, in presence of a number of our fellow-citizens, to the senate and youth of our university :-“ As men will no longer 66 suffer themselves to be led blindfold in

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ignorance, so will they no more yield to " the vile principle of judging and treating “ their fellow-creatures, not according to the “ intrinsic merit of their actions, but accord

ing to the incidental and involuntary co6 incidence of their opinions. The great “ truth has finally gone forth to all the ends 66 of the earth, THAT MAN SHALL NO MORE

RENDER ACCOUNT TO MAN FOR HIS BELIEF,

OVER WHICH HE HAS HIMSELF NO CON“ TROL. Henceforward, nothing shall pre“ vail upon us to praise or to blame any one 66 for that which he can no more change 6 than he can the hue of his skin, or the height of his stature.”*

To these sentences a still greater publicity and permanence have since been given by the press; and their leading position, emblazoned in capitals, is held forth to the grateful and admiring acceptance of the whole world. That they contain no truth, it would be uncandid and scandalous to

Inaug. Disc.

p.

47.

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