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N the following sheets, which I am de
firous of rendering universally useful, I have taken care to write the third and fourth chapters in such a manner, as that they may be read separately by persons to whom the preceding part of the work might be difficult or unnecessary. - The plan I have pursued throughout is as follows.--Having, as I think, set aside Mr. Lindsey's foundation of argument in the introduction, and Thewed the fallacy or inconclusiveness of what he builds most upon, I have in my first chapter stated the proper premises upon which our reason is at liberty to act with respect to scripture truths. In my second, I have endeavoured to thew the nature of the evidence which is borne to that great scripture truth to which our faith is required. And in the subsequent parts of the work have shewed what the evidence itself is.I have but one request to make
of my reader, which is, that he will do by me as I did by Mr. Lindsey; and when he is reading my book, that he will place the Bible beside him; for, by my agreement, with that only do I desire to stand ; nay,
if I shall be found to disagree, I wish to fall. In some few instances, for the fake of continuing a fentence, I have changed the perfon used in a scripture precept, and, instead of absolutely adhering to fuch words as de ye, have fometimes faid we are desired to do, &c. and in a few instances have omitted a multitude of nominatives, where one answered the purpose full as well, as in Rev. vi. 15, 16, where it is said that the kings of the earth, and the great men, and the rich men, and the chief captains, and the mighty men, and every bond man, and every free man bid themselves in the dens, and in the rocks of the mountains ; in such cases I have used only the first. Of this I think it necessary to apprize my reader, left he should charge me with inaccuracy in my quotations; whereas I will promise him that, throughout the whole work, he will not find the smallest alteration made in the sense. The passages with which I have taken this liberty are but very few also; but
let him lay the Bible beside him, and there is no great danger of his being misled. Sometimes instead of quoting I have paraphrased; but that will always appear in the instance. - In the 67th page I have made a comment upon John viii. 58, and confuted an objection brought against it by an author who styles himself “ a Lover of the Gospel.” The passage which I have treated of was pointed out to me; it remained on my mind, and by mistake I have ascribed it to Mr. Lindsey. This is but of small importance. I mention it only that I
may apologize to him for it.
The few additional passages that have been inserted in this Third Edition, are chiefly intended to obviate such strictures as the work has heretofore undergone; they are not however delivered in the style of controversy, nor is the particular observation which they are designed to subvert, pointed out, by any reference, to the eye of the reader. Had I considered these additions as an important improvement to the volume, I should have collected them into
a separate pamphlet for the gratification of those who have purchased the former editions.
The additional passages may be found in
p. 54, 55, 57, 69, 74, 75, 96, 121, 122, 130, 132, 148, 154, 158, 166, 167, 170, 202, 231.
ERRAT U M.
P. 133. for 1 Cor. 10, &c. read 1 Cor. ii. 10, &c.
SCRIPTURAL CONFUTATION, &c.
HE conduct of Mr. Lindsey, in refigning the vicarage of Catterick on certain scruples, excited my curiosity to know what his
particular objections to the subscription of the Articles of the Church of England were, His resignation was soon followed by a book under the captivating title of “ The Apology of Theophilus Lindsey, A. M. on resigning the vicarage of Catterick, YorkAhire.” With this book, which was greedily bought up, I also furnished myself. What I expected to have found in it, is of no consequence to the public; but I did indeed find a much larger circuit taken" than the title promised, and that “ the design was not barely to offer a vindication of the motives and conduct of a private perfon," but to affail every fundamental doctrine of the church, from the ministry of which he had retired; to degrade the God of our salvation; to snatch from us the object of our religion; and to evince, that Jesus Christ is not one, with the Father and the Holy Ghoft, God. Upon what foundation he has raised the Aimsy superstructure of his own doctrine, or rather with what engines he has endeavoured to subvert the fixed fabrick of our religion, and force it from the basis of revelation, I shall proceed to fbew; and without infi