Sivut kuvina
[ocr errors][ocr errors]

upon earth, deduced from the authority given to the apostles to judge the world at tbe last day.

Secondly, I beg leave to ask whether in i Cor. xii. 28. the three orders of the Christian Ministry may not be described by the titles of apostles, prophets, and teachers, after whom follow not 'men but gifts, common to the ministry and to the people ? The occasional gift of prophecy does not seem to constitute a prophet in the primary and chief sense of the word; but the exercise of the office of a priest does so. See Gen. xx. 7. where the word first occurs.

Thirdly, If I have not sufficiently obviated the argument against Episcopacy brought from the sundry meanings of the word Church, it may be of importance to obşerve that where St. Paul speaks of a church in a house, there probably was in that house a place set apart for divine worship (1 Cor. xi. 22.) where the neighbouring christians and their pastor met. Therefore it cannot be proved that a congregation without a minister or head was called a church. The separation of a pastor and his flock seems indeed to constitute the death of a church, which thereby becomes a beheaded carcase. (alwuc Rev. xi. 8.) So Archbishop Usher and others understood the place.

Fourthly, If the assertion that two or three are sufficient to constitute a church (Matt. xviii. 20.) has not likewise been refuted, let me observe that it makes as much against the conventicle as against the church, and proves that no man need worship God out of his family. A similar doctrine is often built upon Heb. viii. 11. which likewise proves too much for the purpose of our objectors, and unfortunately for them, when rightly explained, as it is by St. Paul in Heb. x. 16, &c. entirely refutes them. There is nothing which proves the lawless tendency of schismatical principles more than the way in which the foregoing passages are explained by them; for they so explain them as by consequence to do away all obligation to public worship, and to make every man his own priest and prophet.

Scripture teacheth us that the Holy Spirit is the bond and cement of Christians; but the modern doctrine is that separation is a proof of possessing the Spirit. Permit me therefore to remind these innovators of the character given of them by St. Jude. He compares them to the angels who kept pot their first government (agxn») who


feed: (govern) themselves without fear, who separate themselves, not having the Spirit, as Corah separated himself from the church in the wilderness. (Jude vi. 12, 19,) Mr. Johnson, vicar of Great Torrington, in his Exposition of the Epistle to the Church of Laodicea, has some very valuable remarks on these levelling, and lawless principles. I shall now offer a few observations upon the prophecies relating to the establishment of the church by Constantine the Great, to which Mr. Evanson gives a new interpretation. He professes to have been induced by this and other prophecies to relinquish our excellent church. But his exposition of Rev. vii. where he begins to form ah opinion for himself, betrays such ignorance of the first principles of interpretation, as well as of history, that I must remind him of both. The only legitimate principles of interpretation I apprehend to be these. (1.) The author of the Apocalypse, when he explains himself, is his own best interpreter. (2.) St. John's explanation of himself in one place extended to all parallel places is preferable to any other interpretation. (3.) Where St. John does not explain himself, an explanation by another inspired writer is preferable to any other interpretation. (4.) The explanation of a place in another inspired writer extended to all the parallel places in the Apocalypse is preferable to any other interpretation. (5.) Prophecy is to be compared with history, not to shew its signification, but its fulfilment.

Had Mr. Evanson made use of these elementary principles of interpretation in their proper order, he would not, I apprehend, have found cause to differ from Mede, Daubuz, and Bishop Newton, in one of the plainest prophecies of the Apocalypse. Had he likewise compared the prophecy with Eusebius, he would have found the following confirmation from history, which must seal the truth of their interpretation, and prove that the establishment of Christianity was of God. The words are the words of Constantine. Ta onu oQpayida savicego opo baraqueos καλλινικα ηγησαμην ςρατε, το μεν γαρ ονομα σε γνησιως αγαπω,-εσειyouce yev, Tov ayowiatov Co. Ovxov avævewo ao Gau. Vita Constantini, lib. 2c. 55. comp. lib. 1. c. 43. . ,

I am, Gentlemen,
Your obedient humble Servant,






[ocr errors][ocr errors]


WILL thank your readers to make the following ad-

ditions to two of my papers, one entitled, “ On the Restoration of the Jews,” and inserted in your Magazine for February last; the other entitled, “ The Worship of Trinitarians not idolatrouş,” and inserted in your Magazine for June : i.e.

P. 94. 1. 11. read, “The Jewish religion was a sort of scaffolding, by means of which the Christian religion was to be erected; and its purpose in this respect being answered, there is no reason to expect that either it, or any thing which has a peculiar reference to it, will ever be revived. It is remarkable, that one of the strongest passages which can be alleged out of the prophecies for the literal restoration of the Jews, (i. e. Amos ix. ll, &c.) is applied by St. James (Acts xv. 16, 17.) to the establishment of Christ's religion, and the admission of the Gentiles into the Christian covenant." P. 430. 1.7. after the words " speculative truth," read,

venture to say, in the most positive terms, that' no good can arise from separating from the established church, but what might be effected, and in a ten-fold degree, by remaining in communion with it. I do not see, indeed, how a conscientious Anti-trinitarian can be a minister of the Church of England; but I am of opinion, that there is no sufficient reason to justify his separation from it as a lay-member. Eren with respect to the parts of our public service, in which an Anti-trinitarian might be supposed least able conscientiously to join, i.e. addresses to the three several Persons of the Holy Trinity as distinguished from each other, he might consider thein as so many addresses to God in the several characters of Creator, Redeemer, and Sanctifier, and as means of exciting in his mind sentiments of gratitude to God for the several blessings, to which those characters refer."

I am, Sir, Rempstone,

Your's, &c. Lug. 13, 1805.



[ocr errors]

I will

[ocr errors]

Original Letter from Dr. WARBURTON afterwards Bisnor

of GlợUCESTER, to the Rev. Mr. COM BER,

(We are greatly indebted to our esteemed friend for so handsomely attendo

ing to our request ; and shatl be much obliged to him for further com, munications of a like nature. We have thought it necessary to omit · some of the Notes. But if he will favour us with a sketch of Dr. · Comber, it shall be inserted in the biographical department of our Magazine.]

Dear Sir, M R. KNAPTON has just published your Letter to

I me* which I have now read, and with an high opinion both of your reasoning and learning. You have very dextrously shewn the inconclusiveness and impertia nence of every argument and fact he has urged against my opinion, and have very properly strengthened it with a concluding quotation from STILLINGFLEET in point.

They must be strange sort of people whom you mention in the first page, and they must be very wicked, or very ignorant to censure me so brutally. But could they be ignorant that Dr. M.+ owned publicly that he believed it was no unfriendly motion to him? And could they be ignorant on what it was that Dr. M. grounded his beliefe? I had been much censured for commending Dr. M. by men who thought him a Deist: therefore, as well to vindicate him as myselfe, I drew up an apology for him in a pamphlet I published against WEBSTER.I Atthe same time I said Dr. M. and I differed, (as would be seen) in many

* I am not able exactly to say what was the subject of this letter to the Bishop, then Dr. Warburton, as not a tenth part of my father's numerous works, have descended to me entire; which I can never cease to regret with most poignant sorrow. I have one letter of his in defence of the Bishop's celebrated work of the “ Divine legation of Moses," but it is not addressed to the Bishop, and cannot be the one here meant.

T. C. + Dr. Congers Middleton: he and Warburton were mutually shy of each other, though frequently disposed to spar. That Middleton was a deist there can be no question, since his private correspondence has been printed. Of the truth of this we shall shortly adduce indubitable proofs. · I Dr. William Webster, a man of considerable talents, but strangely neglected. He was lecturer of St. Dunstan's in the West; and author of the Weekly Miscellany, an Orthodox Journal, published under the name of Richard Hooker.

Editor. Vol. IX. Churchm. Mag. Aug. 1805. R. material

material points. This was one, and having thus prepared the public for it, what wretches must they be to censure me so villainously. But I forbear to say more, because you speak of them as persons you know, and who are remarkable enough for candour..

I will take this opportunity of assuring you, (which I do with pleasure, because my conscience approves of what I say), that every calumny and suspicion cast on me by scriblers, without number as well as name, is as groundless as this; though I have thought it beneath me to say so much to the public, as I say to you, because they have no claim to this information, and you have by the generosity of this defense.

I wish it was in iny power to shew you how well I take your kind intentions. The best service I can do you, is to exhort you to the same perseverance in literature in which you have set out, and then there will be nothing in literature, but what time and application will make you capable of: application, that prunes the luxuriancy, and time that mellows the acerbity of youthfull wit. In a word; as you see I am not disposed to flatter you, I may haveleave to say, that at a time when the memory of great Divines, (as of great Poets) only remains, I think I see in you, if God preserves your life, and you persevere in the course you have begun, one who will revive the old reputation of the English Divines. .

I am, Dear Sir, your obliged,
Prior-Park, and very faithfull humble Servant,
Dec, 12, 1748.



From the Rev. Mr. Clapham's second volume of selected


(Concluded from page 56.)

- TT will be considered that I am recommending in this

1 discourse, that our visits should be made chiefly, though not exclusively, to the lower orders of society,


« EdellinenJatka »