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depended upon imputed righteousness, when he neglected personal holiness, he built upon the loosest sand.

The seasonableness of Mr. Wesley's caution in this respect will strike you, honoured sir, if you cast your eyes upon the numbers of fallen believers, who once, like obedient Judas, left all to follow Christ; but having resumed their besetting sin, like the apostolic traitor, now sell their Saviour and election, perhaps for a less valuable consideration than he did. However, they were once in a justified and sanctified state, and Mr. Hill tells them, that "in the act of justification good works have no place," and insinuates, that adulterers and murderers may be in the winter season of a sanctified state; therefore they reasonably conclude, that they are still justified and sanctified. Thus they live, and if God does not send them an honest Nathan, or if when he comes they stop their ears, and cry out, Heresy, thus like Judas they will die.

With respect to the last clause of the Minutes, you must acknowledge," that we are every moment pleasing or displeasing to God, according to the whole of our inward tempers and outward behaviour:" or, to clothe Mr. Wesley's doctrine in words in which you agree with me, you must confess, that, "as we may die every hour, and every moment, we are liable to be every hour and every moment justified, or condemned, by the evidence of our works."* This is evident, if you consider St. Paul's words, "Without faith it is impossible to please God;" and if you do not recant what you say, (Review, p. 12,) "Justifying faith [the faith by which we please God] cannot be without good works." You must therefore prove that adultery, treachery, and murder, are good works, and by that means openly plead for Belial, Baal, and Beelzebub; or you must grant, that when David committed those crimes he had not justifying faith, and consequently did not please God. And the moment you grant this, you set your seal to the last proposition of the Minutes, which you esteem most contrary, and I entirely agreeable, to sound doctrine.

Having thus, by the help of your own concessions, once more removed the rock of offence, under which you try to crush the seasonable rampart of St. James' undefiled religion, which we call the Minutes, I leave you to consider how much Mr. Wesley has been misunderstood, and how much the truth of the Gospel has been set at naught. I am, honoured and dear sir, yours, &c,



To Richard Hill, Esq.

HON. AND DEAR SIR,-While my engine, common sense, stands yet firm upon the point of our justification by the evidence of works, which you have so fully granted me, permit me to level it a moment

* The reader is once more desired to remember, that by works we understand, not only the works of the tongue and hands, i. e. words and actions; but also, and chiefly, the works of the mind and heart, that is, thoughts, desires, and tempers. 16


at the basis of the main pillars which support Antinomianism and Calvinism.

1. If righteous Lot had died when he repeated the crimes of drunkenness and incest, his justification would have been turned into condemnation, according to St. Paul's plain rule, If thou be a breaker of the law, thy circumcision is made uncircumcision: for neither the holy God, nor any virtuous man, can possibly justify a sinner upon the evidence of drunkenness and incest.

2. If old Solomon, doating upon heathenish young women, and led away by them into abominable idolatries, had died before he was brought again to repentance, he could never have seen the kingdom of God. He should have perished in his sin, unless Geneva logic can make it appear, in direct opposition to the word of God, that the impenitent shall not perish, and that idolaters shall inherit the kingdom of God, Luke xiii, 3; 1 Cor. vi, 9.

3. If the incestuous Corinthian had been cut off while he defiled his father's bed, the justification granted him at his first conversion, far from saving him in the day of judgment, would have aggravated his condemnation, and caused him to be counted worthy of a much severer punishment than if he never had known the way of righteousness,-never been justified; unless you can prove that Christ would have acquitted him upon the horrid evidence of apostasy and incest, which appears to me as difficult a task as to prove that Christ and Belial are one and the same filthy god.

4. If David and Bathsheba had been run through by Uriah, as Zimri and Cosbi were by Phinehas; and if they had died in their flagrant wickedness, no previous justification, no Calvinian imputation of righteousness, would have secured their justification in the last day. For, upon the evidence of adultery and premeditated murder, they would infallibly have been condemned; according to those awful words of our Lord, I come quickly to give EVERY MAN, [here is no exception for the "pleasant children,"] according as HIS work shall be, not according as my work has been. Blessed are they that do his commandments, that they may enter in through the gates into the city; for without are dogs, WHOREMONGERS, and MURDERERS, Rev. xxii, 12, &c.

Should you say, honoured sir, It is provided in the decree of absolute election that adulterers, who once walked with God, shall not die till they have repented: (1.) I demand proof that there ever was such a decree. In the second Psalm, indeed, I read about God's decree respecting Christ and mankind; but it is the very reverse of Calvin's decree, for it implies general redemption and conditional election. I will declare the decree. Thou art my son. I will give thee the HEATHEN for thine inheritance, and the UTTERMOST parts of the earth for thy possession. Kiss the son, lest he be angry, and ye perish from the


2. This evasion is founded upon a most absurd supposition, which sews pillows to the arms of backsliders and apostates, by promising them immortality if they persevere in sin. But setting aside the absurdity of supposing that old Solomon, for example, might have kept himself alive till now by assiduously worshipping Ashtaroth; or, which is the same, that he might have put off death by putting off repentance,

because he could not die till he had repented: I ask, Where is this strange Gospel written? Certainly not in the Old Testament; for God asks there with indignation, "When the righteous turneth away from his righteousness, and committeth iniquity, SHALL HE LIVE?" No: "in his sin that he has sinned SHALL HE DIE," Ezek. xviii, 24. Much less in the New, where Christ protests, that he will spue lukewarm believers out of his mouth, and that every branch in him which bears not fruit, shall be taken away or cut off. An awful threatening this, which was executed even upon one of the twelve apostles! For our Lord himself says, Those that thou GAVEST me I have kept, and none of THEM is lost but Judas, who fell finally, since he died in the very act of self murder, and is particularly called the son of perdition.

But granting you, that lest Lot, David, and Solomon should be condemned by works in the day of judgment, they were to be immortal till they repented and did their first works; this very supposition indicates, that till they repented they were sons of perdition, according to that solemn declaration of truth manifest in the flesh, Except ye repent, ye shall all perish.

As if you were aware of this difficulty, (p. 149,) you have recourse to a noted distinction in Geneva logic, by which you hope to secure your favourite doctrine, as well as fond Rachel once secured her favourite teraphim. You say, "that though a sinner [David, for instance, or Solomon] be justified in the sight of God by Christ alone, he is declaratively justified by works both here and at the day of judgment."

Now, honoured sir, this necessarily implies, that though David in Uriah's bed, and Solomon at the shrine of Ashtaroth, are justified in the sight of God by Christ's chastity and piety imputed to them; yet, before men, and before the Judge of quick and dead, they are justified by the evidence of their own chastity and piety. This distinction, one of the main supports of Calvinism, is big with absurdities; for if it be just, it follows,

1. That while God says of Solomon, worshipping the goddess of the Zidonians, he is still a true believer, "he is justified from all things ;" Christ says, By his fruit ye shall know him; he is an impenitent, unjustified idolater; and St. James, siding with his Master, says roundly, that Solomon's faith being now without works is a dead, unjustifying faith; by which, as well as by his bad works, he is condemned already. Now, sir, it remains that you should give up Antinomian Calvinism, or tell us who is grossly mistaken, God or Christ. For, upon your scheme, God says of an impenitent idolater, who once believed in him, "He is fully justified by the perfect law of liberty." And Christ says, "Ile is fully condemned by the same law!" And reason dictates, that both parts of a full contradiction cannot be true.

Do not say, honoured sir, that, upon the Calvinian plan, the Father and the Son never contradict one another in the matter of a sinner's justification; for if the Father justifies by the imputation of an external righteousness, which constitutes a sinner righteous while he commits all sorts of crimes; and if the Son, on the other hand, condemns a sinner for his words, much more for the commission of adultery, idolatry, and murder; their sentence must be as frequently different as a believer acts or speaks, contrary to the law of liberty. For Christ

being the same yesterday, to-day, and for ever, cannot justify: he must condemn now, as well as in the day of judgment, every man who now acts or speaks wickedly.

Should you attempt to account for the Father's imaginary justification of an impenitent idolater, by bringing in Calvin's decrees, and saying that God reckoned Solomon converted man at the shrine of Ashtaroth, because he had absolutely decreed to give him restoring grace; I reply, supposing such decrees are not imaginary, is it not absurd to say, God reckons that cold is heat, and confounds January with July, because he has decreed that summer shall follow winter? Therefore, which way soever you turn, absurdities or impieties stare you in the face.

2. The unreasonableness of Calvinism will appear to you more glaringly still, if you suppose for a moment that David died in Uriah's bed. For then, according to Dr. Crisp's justification by the imputation of Christ's chastity, he must have gone straight to heaven; and, according to our Lord's condemnation, by the evidence of personal adultery, he must have gone straight to hell. Thus, by the help of Geneva logic, so sure as the royal adulterer might have died before Nathan stirred him up to repentance, I can demonstrate, that David might have been saved and damned, in heaven and in hell, at the same time!

3. Your distinction insinuates, that there will be two days of judgment; one to try us secretly before God, by imputed sin and imputed righteousness; and the other to try us publicly before men and angels, by personal sin and personal righteousness. A new doctrine this, which every Christian is bound to reject, not only because the Scripture is silent about it, but because it fixes a shocking duplicity of conduct upon God; for it represents him, first, as absolutely saving or damning the children of men, according to his own capricious imputation of Christ's righteousness, or of Adam's sin; and then as being desirous to make a show of justice before men and angels, by pretending to justify or condemn people "according to their works," when in fact he has already justified or condemned them without the least respect to their works; for, say Bishop Cowper and Mr. Hill," In the act of justification, good works have no place ;" and, indeed, how should they, if free grace and free wrath have unalterably cast the lot of all, before the foundation of the world?-or, in other terms, if finished salvation and finished damnation have the stamp of God, as well as that of Calvin?

4. According to your imaginary distinction, Christ, as King of saints, frequently condemns for inherent wickedness, those whom he justifies, as a Priest, by imputed righteousness; and so, to the disgrace of his wisdom, he publicly recants, as a Judge, the sentence of complete justification, which he privately passes as a God. Permit me, honoured sir, to enforce this observation by the example of Judas, or any other apostate. I hope nobody will charge me with blasphemy, for saying that our Lord called Judas with the same sincerity with which he called his other disciples. Heaven forbid that any Christian should suppose the Lamb of God called Iscariot to get him into the pit of perdition, as the fowler does an unhappy bird which he wants to get

into a decoy. Judas readily answered the call, and undoubtedly believed in Christ as well as the rest of the apostles; for St. John says, "This beginning of miracles did Jesus in Cana of Galilee, and manifested forth his glory, and his disciples [of whom Judas was one] believed in him." His faith was true so far as it went; for he was one of "the little flock to whom it was God's good pleasure to give the kingdom," Luke xii, 32. Our Lord pronounced him "blessed," with the rest of his disciples, Matt. xiii, 16, and conditionally promised him one of the twelve apostolic crowns in his glory, Matt. xix, 28.

If you say, that "he was always a traitor and a hypocrite," you run into endless difficulties; for, (1.) You make Christ countenance, by his example, all bishops, who knowingly ordain wicked men-all patrons, who give them livings-and all kings, who prefer ungodly men to high dignities in the Church. (2.) You suppose that Christ, who would not receive an occasional testimony from an evil spirit, not only sent a devil to preach and baptize in his name, but at his return encouraged him in his horrid dissimulation, by bidding him "rejoice that his name was written in heaven." (3.) You believe," that the faithful and true Witness," in whose mouth no guile was ever found, gave this absurd, hypocritical charge to a goat, an arch hypocrite, a devil: "Behold, I send you forth as sheep in the midst of wolves; but fear not, the hairs of your head are all numbered. A sparrow shall not fall to the ground without your Father, and ye are of more value than many sparrows. Do not premeditate, it shall be given you what you shall speak : for it is not you that speak, but the Spirit of your Father which speaketh in you."

When our Lord spoke thus to Judas, he was a sheep, i. e. "he heard Christ's voice, and followed him.". But, alas! he was afterward taken by the bright shining of silver and gold, as David was by the striking beauty of Uriah's wife. And when he had admitted the base temptation, our Lord, with the honesty of a Master, and tenderness of a Saviour, said, "Have not I chosen you twelve, and one of you is a devil?" He has let the tempter into his heart. This severe, though indirect reproof, reclaimed Judas for a time; as a similar rebuke checked Peter on another occasion. Nor was it, probably, till near the end of our Lord's ministry that he began to be "unfaithful in the mammon of unrighteousness:" and even then Christ kindly warned, without exposing him.

Some, indeed, think that our Lord was partial to Peter; but I do not see it for with equal love and faithfulness he warned all his disciples of their approaching fall, and mentioned the peculiar circumstances of Judas' and Peter's apostasy. "Aye, but he prayed for Peter that his faith might not fail." And is this a proof that he never prayed for Judas? That he always excepted him, when he prayed for his disciples, and that he would have excepted him, if he had been alive when he interceded for all his murderers? "However, he looked at Peter, to cover him with a penitential shame." Nay he did more than this for Judas; for he pointed at him, first indirectly, and then directly, to bring him to a sense of his crime. But, supposing our Lord had not at all endeavoured to stop him in his dreadful career, would this have been a proof of his reprobating partiality? Is it not

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