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Review.---The Essentials of a National Church briefly explained. 435 “Of the first of these laborious exposi. Legislature. By a Friend to a more sious, it must be remarked, that if the comprehensive Liturgy. 8vo. pp. Fatube be at one time the Father only, 83. T. and J. Allman. 1819. and al another time the Son also, it never can be distinguished when he is the
CHOEVER reflects on the inFather and when not, or how he is the
quiring spirit of the age, and Father at all. If the one person be also
on the extensive and increasing de. the three persons, or the three persons the fection from the precivets of ortho. one; The Father the Son, the Son the doxy, must wonder at the pertinacity Farver, the Spirit either or all; the per- with which the National Church sols are con founded, and the undoubted'adheres to the most palpable absurpenalty incurred, of 'perishing everlas- dities of its ritual, the most obvious tingly.'
incousistencies of its numerous creeds. * The second exposition, which makes Such, indeed, is the anxiety to upthe Father and Jesus Christ the only true Gov, absolutely excludes the Holy Ghost hold and defend certain mysterious from being the true God, and is equally in doctrines, that there is no shorter or jeopardy of everlasting destrnction : for mure certain way of arriving at the the Creed, which is made the rule of salva- dignities and emoluments of the Estation in place of Scripture, says, that the blishment, than by engaging in their Holy Ghost is God, no less than the Son is defence; and by labouring to clothe God, and the Father is God; each God by them in a dress, in which they may himself
, and all three one numerical God. be exposed, with some degree of So that while the Father is not the only safety, to the scrutinizing examination true God, bat Jesus Christ is also the ouly of this enlightened generation. It true God, there is yet another only true God, the Holy Ghost."'--''p. 86, 87.
must be gratifyiug to the Unitarian
to observe that, in this undertaking, The same mode of argument is ob- every exertion is used, every species served in the short remarks on Mark of sophistry is employed to force the xiii. 32: “ Of that day and hour [the Athanasian scheme into as near a time of the destruction of Jerusalem] resemblance as possible to Unitariknoweth no man; 110, not the angels anism. For happy dves that polemical which are in heaven, NEITHER THE wight esteem himself, who, by some Son, but the Father."
new and plausible turn of language, “ This passage, which, by disproving thinks he has proved to the satisfacthe omniscience of Jesus, disproves bis tion of his courteous reader, that the deity, has been subjected to three different doctrine of a Trinity in Unity is not experiments: 1. The words neither the absolutely absurd. Meantime, numeSon must bave been interpolated by the rous appeals to the common sense of Arians. 2. Jesiis did not h now it in bis the community issue from the press human nature ;, but one of the Councils in rapid succession, and afford incon. anatbematized those who should deny that he knew it in his divine nature; that is, trovertible proof that the time is at he both knew it and he knew it not.
3. hand, when the last mists of superstiIt is only a mode of speech, implying that tion will be chased from our religious he had not the communicable kuowledye atmosphere by the strong light of the of it; that be did not know it, so as that increasing day. others may know it also. Such are the In the pamphlet that now lies be. men who charge the worshipers of the fore us we have some sensible stricFatuer' with torturing texts, and putting tures on the incongruities and contrasense to the rack!”—Pp. 93, 94.
dictions of the three crceds, that are We must here pause for the present incorporated in the worship of the month, but we hope to resume our
Established Church : extracts; being persuaded that, with " In the creed which is called the regard to a volume of such intrinsic Apostles',' Jesus Christ is said to bave been value, this is the best way to fulfil our conceived by the Holy Ghost;' or, in design of recommending it strongly to other words, to have proceeded from the our readers.
Holy Ghost; but in the Nicene Creed, the
Jesus; while the Atbanusian Creed conArt. II.-The Essentials of a National tradicts bothi
, and says, that the “Son is Church briefly explained, scriptu- uncreate,' and the Holy Ghost uncreate.' rally enforced and humbly recom- The Apostles' Creed makes the Son pos. mended to the consideration of the terior io the Father, but prior to the Holy
Ghost; the Nicene Creed makes the Holy and glows with love for his paternal attriGhost' anterior to the Son; while the butes, how must its tone of seriousness be Athanasian Creed declares, thal, of the relaxed, and an earthly grossness be three divine persons, none is afore or thrown over its spiritual contemplations, after anvtber' How then could the Fa. when the worship of the National Church ther prerede the Son ? as the Apostles' presumes to tails of the nativity of God,
How could Jeslis proceed the circumcision of the ine'isible Jehotaka from the Holy Ghost? as the same Creed of the agony and sweat of bim whom do asserts ; or, the lloly Ghost proceed from infirmity can approach, and no hostility Jesus, as the Nicene Creed declares ? overcome! The contradictory credenda, which are “ How can religion be served, how can brought together in these three Creeds, piety be promoted, by thus lowering the are a disgrace to the Establishment; for character of God? And without at preit is self evident that they cannot all be sent considering the expressions as apply. believed by the same personu ; and, there. ing to God himself, they, at least, represent fore, it is equally certain that those who his regard as influenced by considerations process to believe them all must prosess of that gross kind which can never operate to believe a self-evident impossibility upon a spiritual mind. For, can we bePp. 16, 17.
lieve that that Being who is at once infi. The Author conceives that it would nite in wisdom and in goodness, cau be at tend, not only to increase the lustre shipers, to deliver them from evil, or to
all impelled to shew favonr to his wor. of the Establisliment, but to exalt the elevate them to good, because in their
character of its ministers, and conse- supplications they invoke his regard by . quently to add greatly to the useful. 'the nativity and circumcisiou, by the
pess of both, in a moral as well as in baptism, fasting and temptation, by the a political point of view, if, instead of agony and sweat,' of a morial man? If, the complex and contradictory creeds in any ritnal of Pagan worship, we were of the National Church, the legisla. to meet with petitions of this kind, ad. ture would substitute a creed of that dressed to Jupiter or to Juno, should we simple and intelligible kind, which
not treat the expressions with ridicule or
with scorn ? Jesus Christ bas bimself authorita. idea that any celestial being could be re
Should we not spurn the tively delivered, ou a most solemn conciled to a transgressor, because some occasion : “ This is life eternal, to other individual bad suffered the excision know thee, the only true God, and of a particular membrane, or had experiJesus Christ whom thou hast sent." enced a violent exudation from the corpo. Joho xvii. 3. “ This creed," the real pores? Is a litnrgy, which contains writer- observes," ought to be in- pollution of this kind, worthy to be prescribed in characters of gold over
served inviolate in this enlightened age? every pulpit and every altar in the Is it sacrilege to touch the ark of this kingdom; that those who come to
devotional formulary, in order to remove worship the Father of Spirits in the all that peccant matter which contaminates
the good, and tends to bring the whole sanctuary of the Establishment may into contempt?" +_Pp. 24–26. be impressed by the reverence which is paid to this solemn declaration of Jesus Christ; and may be convinced
. When the Unitarian dertakes to that the object of the church is not, shew the impiety of using such profanely as Mr. J. Bentham has asserted, to familiar language in reference to the Deits,
an orthodox writer in the Evangelical prostrate the understanding before a colossal fabric of ancient absurdity
Magazine Turns round upon him, and presumes
to deprecate the discussion, and mysticism.”—P. 20.
which the irreverent phraseology of bis The writer having remarked that system bas provoked and rendered necesthe devotional affectious, which it ought to be the particular object of « Conscious of our own ignorance," a national liturgy to excite, nust be says this Calvinistic writer, “ we think chilled and weakened in proportion it becomes us to contemplaie so exalted a as that liturgy exhibits a low or de theme as the manner of the Divine exis. grading representation of the Deity, tence, not only with modesty aud humility, produces a revolting example of such but with the most profound reverence and irreverent language:
godly fear; nor can we well imagine a
more during act of impiety, than for 3 “ Where the mind is deeply impressed puny worin of the earth to indulge in unwith awful reverence for the great Spirit hallowed speculations on this snblime subwho regulates the nations of the universe, ject, and rashly to intrude into those
Review.-The Essentials of a National Church briefly explained.
The Jews, at the time when Jesus accumulated by the sufferings of Christ; Christ appeared, had perverted many
which righteousness will be made thine by of the commandmenis delivered to
the appropriation of faith through the intheir forefathers, but they adhered fusion of grace: But Jesus, instead of bestrictly to that which is the great die wildering bis inquirer with this jargon, of distinction between a true and a
which forms the savings nostrum of the
mdern the logical school, siniply says, false system of religion-the belief in • If thou wilt enter into life, keep the comthe Divine Unity. They were free mandments.' If this question were put, from the pollution of itlolatry and po. by any serious inquirer, to the Archbishop lytheism :
of Canterbury, What shall I do to be “ This was not the sin of the Jews; and saved the orthodoxy of his Grace would it would have becu better for the church certainly reply-The possibilities of salis it bad never been that of Christians.
vation are circumscribed within the ringBut the piely of individual saints, and the fence of the Thirty-nine Articles, the parkorthodoxy of general councils, could not
paling of the Three Creeds, and the old, be satisfied without warriog the first com
patched, ivy-crested mansion of the Liinandmeat by their inetaphysical disqui: iurky: Bui
, instead of confining salvatiou sitions. Wiih barefaced eff'rontery they
to a belief in such a chequered medley of pushed into that sanctuary where angels contradictory and heterogeneons elements, bide their faces with their wings They how simple is the answer of Christ, li made a tripartite inage of the invisible Gud.
thou wilt enter into life, keep the com. head, and then menaced those who would inandments’ !”—Pp. 33, 34. not do homage to such a profanation, with We do not expect that the justice ao exclusion from some of the best interests of the following remarks on the in this world, and with eternal damnation in the next!!!”-Pp. 31, 32
“ Lord's prayer" will be admitted by
those advocates of misticisin, who This writer justly remarks, that will not allow that this beautiful Jesus Christ always iusists with more form reaches the perfect standard of force ou the facienda ihan on the cre- evangelical peculiarity: denda of the gospel; on what his dis
" That no obscure, mysterious and pociples were to do than ou what they were to belirve Though the faith of in a National Liturgy, we may infer from
lemical doctrines ought to be incorporates! the Sadducees was vol so just as that
that pattern of prayer which Jesus deli. of the Pharisees, let Jesuis always vered to his disciples, when they requested condemus the immorality of the latter birm to teach them how to pray. This with more severity than the infidelity prayer, therefore, merits particular attenof the former. While be reprobates,
tion, not merely from its comprehensive in the strongest terms, the counter
excellence, but because it was expressly feit piety of the Pharisaic sect, he says designed as a model which his disciples to the Sadducees, “ Ye err, not know
and their followers were in copy in their ing the Scriptures, nor the power of rits. But this prayer inculcates no am
devotional addresses to the Father of Spi. God." The Author the proceeds to biguous or uncertain tenets, with respect ask:
to the person of the Deity; nor does it “When the following important ques. give the least countenance to any of those tion was once put to Jesus, * What good doctrines which have been productive of so thing shall I do, that I may have eternal
much strife in the Christian church. In life! what was his reply? Was it-Be this prayer, God is not addressed as a decply impressed with the innate corrup. triune Deity, but simply as the quiversal tion of thy nature: think thyself ulcerated Father of mankind. Every sentiment of with sin, and infected with depravity to reverence and affection is combined in the the very core? Then rely for acceptance, denomination of Fatber, by which Chrise pot on any inerits of thy own, but on those directs us to invoke the Deity. But the which will be imputed to the believer from unity of the divine nature is expressly imthat store of righteousuess wbich has been plied in the tem; for, as we can have but
one Father, so we cannot supplicate more
than one God under thai tênder appellation. things respecting the Deity, which he has “ The prayer which our Lord delivered, not thoughe proper to reveal."
as a pattern for the initation of his dis. We may safely leave it to the reader of ciples, is a breviary of comprehensive the passage just quoted from the tract principles. It is not the production of a under Review, to determine which party inind which bounded its views within the is obnoxious to this censure, the justice of narrow pale of sectarian jealousy or exwhich we readily admit.
clusive privilege, which confined its sen.
timents or affections, its views of truth, or nol only in its practical inferences, bat ia its sympathies of benevolence within the its speculative results. For it, of course, contracted walls of the synagogue or the includes belief in the divine mission of tabernacle, but which extended its thoughts Jesus, of which it was the evidence and through the universe, and made its tender the consummation. He, therefore, who regard co-extensive with the race of sen- sincerely believes in this all-important
When Jesus composed this fact, cannot doubt but that Jesus was a prayer, be fitted it for the use of all the teacher who had a commission from God devout worshipers of the Father of Spirits to make kuown his will to mankind. It in the temple of the universe.
includes a belief in the fatherly concern “ Had Cbristians uniformly adhered, in of the Deity for his creatures, in his sa. their forms of public worship, to this in- perintending providence and his moral comparable model of simplicity, sublimity government of the world. He, who beand benevolence, so many tempest110118 lieves in this essential tenet of the Christian feuds would not have been engendered, faith, cannot but be strongly impressed and so many angry sects wonld not have with the importance of a virtuous life, as arisen in the sanctuary. All Christians, he is convinced that death does not termiof all denominations, might have combined nate his existence, but is only the passage to worship the Father of the universe in to a state of retribution."- Pp. 60–63. the kind sympathies of love, and in the gentle spirit of peace."--Pp. 37–41.
The Author Aatters himself that
the reformation in the Liturgy of the The Author vext proceeds to trace, Establishment, for which he strein the narrative called the Acts of the nuously pleads, might be easily acApostles, the creed which these in- complished. spired teachers themselves inculcated
“ The Liturgy of the Church of England upon the first professors of Christi might readily be simplified, so as to admit anity: and he proves from numerous
all Christian sects into its spacions sane. passayes, that the principal point of tuary. their preaching, as far as regarded requisite for this purpose ; aud these
Not many alterations would be matters of faith, was the all-important would chiefly consist of omissions. We and well-attested fact of the resur- should retain all that was essential to rection of Christ, considered as the render it a service worthy of a great naearnest of a future life, and the pledge tional communion, calculated to nurture of immortality to man:
the growth of virtue, and to diffuse,
ihrough the different orders of the people “ If religious concord in the Liturgy of and the ditferent denoninations of believers, a National Church he at all desirable, how a spirit of universal chariiy."-Pp. 74, 75. is it to be obtained except by rendering the points, in which an agreement is re
We agree with the Writer of this quired, as few as possible, compatible with tract, that though the demand for rethe glorious ends of the doctrine we pro-ligious reform may, at present, be fess? Now that great doctrine of the re- only a still, small voice, yet that it surrection of the dead, which is the cor- will soon become a loud and imperaner-stone of Christianity, and which the tive cry; and that it would be wise Acts of the Apostles prove to have been to anticipate the progress of opinion, alınost exclusively impressed upon the first and not to wait, with inconsiderate believers in Christ, seems to be better temerity, till reform is clamorously calculated than any other ienet to form the demanded. But when we observe bond of union among Christians in modern the obstinacy with which every para times. For whatever contrariety of opinion there may be about the nativity of Christ,
ticle of the system is maintained, we there is no Christian of any denomination
are led to conclude, that the guardians who does not unseignedly assent to the
of the edifice are themselves imprestruth of his resurrection. There is no sed with a conviction that the strucChristian who will not readily say with ture is so crazy and tottering, that St. Paul, that if Christ he not risen, then the removal of a single stone would is our faith rain. But if Christ be risen
endanger the whole fabric. Enterfrom the dead, then bave we good grounds taining this opinion, we for the hope of immortality. Then may that the sensible and temperate res the persecuted rejoice, and the wretched On this fundamental
monstrance of the Writer of this tract article, therefore, a National Church may
will not meet with the attention it so lay the groundwork of religious peace.
justly deserves. This essential tenet of the resurrection of Jesus from the dead is very comprehensive,
cease to monirn.
Review.-Wellwood's Life of Dr. John Erskine.
439 Art. III.-Life of Dr. John Erskine, Necessity, as he represents it, to be at the
late one of the Ministers of Edin- foundation of all sound morality and evao.
And so, notwithstanding these un
fair insinuations, did Dr. P. and Mr. Di Paker was as member of the R. ERSKINE was born in 1721.
B. With respect to the latter, the Scotch bar, and wished him to follow whole of his offence is, that he has the same profession, but from choice given a definition of remorse different he resolved on entering the church. from that which most writers would He was licensed to preach in 1743, sariau must admit that Mr. Belsham's
probably have given. Every Necesand settled in various places, finally remarks are perfectly just, if his defiin Edinburgh. He died in 1803. He nition of the word be admitted. Whewas much associated with Whitfield ther he has given the best definition in 1742, and engaged warmly in de- of the word may be doubted. But fending Whitfield against those members of the Scotch Church, who every philosopher has always been
allowed to use terms in whatever wished to exclude him from the esta. blished pulpits in Scotland. Among defines the words which he uses, and
sense he pleases, provided he carefully many excellent correspondents of Dr. adheres to his definition, both of Erskine's, was Jonathan Edwards. which Mr. Belsham has certainly Concerning this able metaphysician, done. If remorse were defined, very Sir H. enters into a long digression, in which he makes a very unjust at great sorrow for having performed tack on Dr. Priestley and Mr. Bel. God, Mr. B. would no doubt allow,
actions contrary to the commands of
that according to this definition re“ Some of his latest and most distin- morse is a very proper feeling. Thus guished admirers, who celebrate his argue the whole charge against Mr. B. must ment as both profound and unanswerable, be reduced to his having given a have deduced conclusions from his doc- peculiar definition of remorse.
A trine of the most pernicious tendency, and trifling thing, indeed, on which to the most remote from his intention. Dr. found the charge of a “most perniPriestley has the following remarkable cious tendency"! With respect to paragraph : “ A Necessarian, who believes that nothing goes wrong, but that
Dr. Priestley, the paragraph extracted
every thing is under the best direction possible, from his Disquisitions is certainly not cannot accuse himself of having done well guarded. But if the restrictions, Wrong, in the ultimate sense of the words. “ in the ultimate sense of the words," He has, therefore, in this strict sense, “ in this strict sense,” be taken into nothing to do with repentance, confession account, this presents nothing improand pardon, which are all adapted to a per. And no one can have read Dr. different, imperfect and fallacious view of Priestley's Works, especially bis adthings.' Disquisitions on Matter and mirable sermons “ on the Duty of not Spirit
, II. 147. Mr. Belsham, who adopts Living to Ourselves,” and “ on Hadown the two following positions
, in which bit," without being fully convinced
that the doctrine of Necessity, as he is the exquisitely painful feeling, which stated it, forms the basis of the arises froin the belief that, in circum- soundest morality and the most truly stances precisely the same, we might have evangelical religion. chosen and acted differently. This falla- Dr. Erskine was warmly against the cious feeling is superseded by the doctrine repeal of the Penal Laws affecting the of Necessity. Remorse supposes free-will. Catholics. An admirable letter from It arises from forgetfulness of the precise Burke to him upon this subject, in state of mind, when the action was per- 1780, is printed in this volume. The formed. It is of little or no use in moral discipline. In a degree it is even perni
following extracts are particularly decious.' Elements of the Philosophy of the serving of attention : Human Mind, pp. 284, 406.
Jonathan “ I wish that we may not be so far EnEdwards would bave viewed such conclu- glislımeu or Scotsmen, as to forget that sions from bis argument, not only with
I wish that we may not be contempt but with abhorrence. Whatever so far Presbyterians or Episcopalians as consequences others have deduced from to forget that we are Christians; the one his opinions, he believed the doctrine of being our common bond of humanity, as
we are men.