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conclude, from his writings, that he does, he will not take umbrage at this friendly hint of one who has been much edified with his lucrubations, and could be equally well pleased with them, if he would adopt the advice here given : least of all can I suppose that these hints will be the means of depriving your Readers of the advantages of his future labours.
Some of your learned Correspondents, as Messrs. Pearson and Ludlam, have stepped forward, in propria persona, in the pages of your Mi cellany; and they have done perfectly right in adopting such a plan, because their reputation being fully established in the literary world, their names add a weight and consequence to all their communications The far greater number, however, of your friends have written under some assumed signature or other, oftentimes bearing reference to the subject which they discuss: For such minor writers as your humble servant, this is a wise and judicious plan; because PREJUDICE, which ever will hold its empire over the human mind, having no place on such occasions as these, those remarks or dissertations may pass tolerably well with the generality of readers, which, if they knew the humble hand that produced them, would probably meet with their repelling disapprobation, or freezing neglect. For this reason your present Correspondent is perfectly well satisfied to continue in that state of obscurity, wherein, with regard to his communications in your Miscellany, he is, at present, involved : and he will be most happy if any thing which he shall write, may afford the smallest degree of pleasure or profit to any of
your numerous readers.
I have attended, Gentlemen, with considerable interest to the various discussions which have taken place in the pages of several of your late Magazines on the subject of the intermediate state. I agree with your Correspondent, who signs himself T. in your Magazine for July last, that the above question," from its importance, is entitled to a full and copious discussion,” and therefore as it does not yet appear to me in that “clear light,” in which your abovementioned Correspondent says, it is "capable of being placed," I hype that in some of his future communications he will be so good as to state, in express terms, whether he thinks that the human soul, in its separate state, betwixt death and the general resurrection as or is not in a state of consciousness. I will be free to own, that I incline to the negative of this proposition, chiefly for the reasons specified by your Correspondent, who signs himself A SOUL-SLEEPER, in the Supplement to the fourth Volume of your Magazine, published the ist of this Month. ' If T. is a supporter of the affirmative of this question, I hope he will condescend to furnish us with such arguments as may perfectly invalidate those produced in the abovementioned dissertation, otherwise he will fail of placing the subject in that “clear light,” which he has given us reason to expect. I feel myself greatly obliged by the learned labours of the LONDON CURATE on this subject; but as he hath decidedly taken the affirmative side of the question, I indulge an hope, that he will turn his thoughts to the consideration of the arguments produced by the souL-SLEEPER. I candidly own myself unable to answer thein; but, I doubt not, some of your learned Correspondents will be able to do it effectually. If the
state of death is universally represented, wheresoever it is spoken of, in the Old Testament, in the New Testament, and in the Liturgy of the Church of England, in the service' which she has appointed to be read at the interment of the dead, as a sleep; what just ground have we to allegorize or explain away an article which seems to be expressed in such “clear and universal terms to us? If at liberty to allegorize this point, why not, in common with the enemies of our holy Faith, allegorize also the Mosaic account of the Creation, Fall, &c.? I know it is held by some Divines of a great name, even by some of our learned Prelates now on the bench, that sleep, as applied in the Old and New Testaments, to signify the state of death, can only be referred to the body, which sleeps in the dust of the earth till awakened by the trumpet of the archangel at the last day; but can in no wise be understood as including the soul. But how does this
any part of the sacred writings? If the soul of LAZARUS, during its state of separation from the body, had been in a state of consciousness, can we rationally suppose that, on its being again united to its body by the Almighty Power of God our Saviour, exerted for that express purpose, it would have been perfectly unconscious of what befel it during this state of separation? In my apprehension, clearly not. And if, during the few days of its separation from the body, it was in a state of sleep, or, if you please, of UNCONSCIOUSness, for I cavil not for a word, if the thing only be granted, why might it not continue in the same state of UNCONSCIOUSNESS, till the day of resurrection : for ten thousand years and one minute amount exactly to the same thing, when from unconsciousness we have no power to notice the lapse of time? These reasons incline me to the son L-SLEEPING system: but I am not so bigotted or wedded to an opinion, as not to be open to conviction ; when weightier argu ments are produced on the opposite side.
I have read your Address, Gentlemen, contained in the first pages of your Magazine for July last, with great attention, and an equal degree of approbation. I perfectly accord with you in opinion, that the TOLERATION ACT, which at its first institution was a wise and conciliatory measure, hath of late been greatly abused ; one very remarkable instance, of which you have recorded at p. 43 of your July Magazine, and there is reason to suppose that similar instances are by no means uncommon: it were greatly to be wished, that more extensive powers of rejection were lodged with the justices who license the teachers of separate congregations; and until some provision of this sort is made by the Legislature, we may expect that the dangers which hang over the Establishment will increase rather than diminish. I have seen the late Mr. Wesley's “ Further Appeal,” from which an extract is given in your last Month's Magazine, and can testify that it is a very pernicious production.
I greatly approve of your plan of laying before your readers, Memoirs of eminent Men, who have distinguished themselves for their orthodoxy, and zealous attachment to the Establishment; and, if my health and leisure will permit, propose soon to transmit to you a biographical sketch of a very learned and distinguished character, many years since departed from this present life, from which you will
sée that he was indeed a true son of the Church of England ; and I hope you will therefore deem his life worthy of a place in the pages of your excellent Miscellany.
I am, Gentlemen, Aug. 10, 1803.
KINGLY GOVERNMENT not discountenanced in SCRIPTURE.
TO THE EDITORS OF THE ORTHODOX CHURCHMAN'S MAGAZINE.
THE remarks of your judicious correspondent Tora (whose signature
I am always glad to see) on the abuse of the prophecies, inserted in your last Number, recalled to my mind other abuses of Scripture, which, as I have reason to apprehend, are applied by some of the sectarian teachers to the same pernicious purposes, i.e. " to alienate the minds of their hearers from the principles of obedience, and make them ready to fall into revolutionary measures.” One instance of this abuse has recently been manifested here in the conversation of a dissenter of the Independent persuasion, who, appearing to speak from the authority of' his teachers, affirmed it to be the doctrine of Scripture, that, though obedience to Kings might be due, while they are permitted to reign, yet they were intended by Providence as a scourge and a punishment for sin. This pretended and insidious loyalty is evidently derived from a misinterpretation of that part of scripture history, in which an account is given of the Israelites' desiring a King. In this account, Samuel tells the people, that “their wickedness was great, which they had done in the sight of the Lord, in asking them a King.” The prophet Hosea also, in reference to the same transaction, says to Israel, in the name of the Lord, “I gave thee a King in mine anger.”.
When these passages of Scripture are taken by themselves, they have an appearance, it must be acknowledged, unfavourable to the kingly form of government. But a teacher of religion would be inexcusable, who should bring these passages before his hearers, without explaining, at the same time, the peculiar circumstances, under which the Israelites lived, and which rendered the fact of their desiring a King an instance of that rebellion against God, to which, -in every period of their existence as a nation, they were so obstinately prone. They desired a King to reign over them, when, as the venerable prophet alledged to them, “the Lord their God was their king.” For various important purposes, God had chosen the.children of Israel to be peculiar people unto himself, above all the nations upon the earth ;" and, in order to preserve them so, he had instituted a form of Government among them, of which Himself was the head ; communicating his will to them, from time to time, by his servants the prophets, and appointing judges over them to regulate particular proceedings. It was in opposition to this, that they desired a king to be set over them. Insensible of the superior situation, in which they were placed above
other nations, or ungrateful for the favour, they wished to be like the nations around them, and, in a stupid preference of man to God, they asked for a King. “ And the Lord said unto Samuel, Hearken unto the voice of the people in all that they say unto thee ; for they have not rejected thee, but they have rejected me, that I should not reign over them.” Whatever, therefore, was the wickedness of the Israelites in asking them a king, and whatever punishment God might intend them in granting their request, the case has nothing to da with the case of those, who, in the ordinary situations of human life, find themselves under the government of a king. The duty of such persons is so plainly pointed out in the New Testament, that no one, who calls himself a Christian, can be at a loss respecting it, If kingly government had been displeasing to God, or intended by him only as a punishment, is it possible, that we could meet with such precepts as the following ? “Render, therefore, unto Cæsar the things which are Cæsar's; and unto God the things, which are God's. 4 Matt. xxii. 21. “Let every soul be subject unto the higher powers : for there is no power but of God: the powers that be, are ordained of God.” Rom. xiii. l. “I exhort, therefore, that first of all plications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks be made for all men : for kings, and for all that are in authority; that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life, in all godliness and honesty.” i Tim. ii. 1, 2. “ Put them in mind to be subject to principalities and powers, to obey magistrates, to be ready to every good work.” Tit. iii. 1. “Submit yourselves unto every ordinance of man for the Lord's sake; whether it be to the king, as supreme; or unto governors, as unto them, that are sent by him for the punishment of evil doers, and for the praise of them, that do well.” 1 Pet. ii. 13 & 14. “ Honour all men ; love the brotherhood ; fear God; honour the king." 1 Pet.
After what has been said, it is scarcely necessary to add, that all the precepts of Scripture, whether of the New Testament or of the Old, which direct obedience to civil government in general, are justly applicable to the kingly form in particular.
I am, Gentlemen, Rempston, Sept. 5, 1908.
POSTSCRIPT TO THE REMARKS ON THE WORDS,
CALLED AND CHOSEN.
TO THE EDITORS OF THE ORTHODOX
T the suggestion of a friend and neighbour*, I wish to add, as
a postscript to my “Remarks on the words called and chosen," that the proverbial expression, " Many are called, but few chosen,” seems to be derived from the military custom among the Jews (and * The Rev. W. Beetham, Rector of Costock, Nottinghamshire.
probably among other nations) of summoning, upon occasions of alarm from invading enemies, all persons able to bear arms to meet at a certain rendezvous, and then selecting such as were deemed the fittest for service, and sufficient for the present emergency. occasions of sudden invasion,” says that learned prelate, Bishop Warburton, “ there always went out a general summons for all able to bear arms, to meet at an appointed rendezvous, where a choice being made of those most fit for service, the rest were sent back again to their respective homes. To such a rendezvous all the tribes assembled, when a sudden invasion of the Philistines had penetrated to Shocoh, which belonged to Judah. Amongst the men of Bethlehem, came Jesse and his eight sons: the three eldest were enrolled into the troops, and the rest sent home again.” Works, vol. ii. Note.
Dr. Whitby has a Note on this proverbial expression, which confirms what I said on it, and which well deserves to be transcribed: “ This parable (the marriage of the King's son, Matt. xxi.) saith Theophylact, respects the Jews, who were called, but not elected, ws pen axroavles, as not hearkening to God's call; whence he infers, that το μεν Θεα καλειν, το δε εκλεκλες γενεσθαι η μη, ημέτερον εσι, our calling is of God; but, that we are elect or not, is from ourselves.”
I am, Gentlemen, Rempston, Sept. 6, 1803.
ON A CONSCIOUS INTERMEDIATE STATE.
TO THE EDITORS OF THE ORTHODOX CHURCHMAN'S MAGAZINE.
your cellent Miscellany, on the subject of the “ Intermediate State between Death and the general Resurrection,” are many of them curious, learned, and ingenious. The subject is confessedly of " great importance," and, on that account, intitled to “ a full and fair investigation.” You have, in my humble opinion, acted not only candidly and impartially in inserting the letter, signed " A Soul-sleeper,” in your last ; but properly also. “ Audi alteram partem,” is a maxim which can never be too strictly attended to, by all those who have truth and real knowledge sincerely at heart. And by your impartial insertion of all fair and just objections, you give the advocates for the conscious intermediute state, an opportunity of exposing such fallacious reasoning as may be brought in favour of the contrary opinion. The intermediate state is, I believe, generally held, by the Orthodox Sons of the Church of England, to be a state of consciousness, very much in the way expressed by your correspodent J. W. pp. 80–86, of your last Month's Magazine.' The idea suggested by your correspondent abovemen. tioned, that the PARADISE, spoken of by our Saviour to the thief on the Cross, is “a part of Hades,” or “the receptacle of de.