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important subject, to which we a stress was laid
upon this portion could not ourselves subscribe, and of Scripture, those two verses conwhich we could not almost entirely tained in the body of it, which so recommend. We have indeed, at decisively forbid the preaching of p. 61, to complain of a very unsatis- women, should be sacrificed, with factory, if not uncandid, note, pro- hardly any ceremony, to the supfessing to represent certain pas- posed preponderance of a few gesages in the writings of Calvin, Beza, neral and coubtful declarations of Paræus, Zuinglins, Piscator, but with- other parts of Scripture upon the out referring either to the places where subject. See pp. 88--91. Respecto those pussages are to be found, or to ing the maintenance of ministers, the nuthor from whom he has derived we think the system before us equally thein. Would Mr. Tuke excuse us untenable, and the representations for adducing some extracts from of its present expositor deficient in Leslie in this manner?
candour. But we do not consider The section “ on divine worship it necessary to vindicate our eccleand a Gospel ministry,” pp. 70, &c. siastical establishment on the present contains many particulars to which occasion. The reader who wishes we cannot but object, although we
to know what we have to say uport admire and accord with the piety, this subject is referred to Hooker's which animates considerable por
Ecclesiastical Polity. tions of it. We think the author As the Quakers reject the sacrapleads for dependence on the spirit ments, both of baptism and of the by arguments, which, if allowed to Lord's supper, it cannot be expected proceed their legitimate length, that we should acquiesce in the secwould supersede, not only the means tion on that subject, pp. 97, &c. Mr. neglected by the Quakers, but all Tuke has endeavoured to do away the means whatsoever';—the meeting to force of the command, contained in gether, the agreement upon any re
Matt. xxviii. 19, by giving a figura gular time for that purpose, the oc- tive meaning to the term baptize, a casional exhortations of the members, meaning, of which, in common with in short, the whole discipline of the any other terin, it is easily susceps society.
tible; just as if, because we read of Our author brings forward, p. 87, a death unto sin, the inference were the practice of the church of Co- valid, that our Lord's death was only rinth, described in 1 Cor. xiv, as a metaphorical, and not a real one. the model, after which their con- John iii. 5. is unnoticed by our auduct of public worship is framed; thor, and his treatment of the pracand he considers the argument as
tice of the apostles is not a little sinso decisive that it is unnecessary to gular. Why are the private Coadduce any other, And, indeed, rinthian Christians a better autho when the Quakers shall have prov- rity than the Apostles? We cannot ed, that their society is distinguish- conceive how so judicious a writer ed by the same spiritual endow- as Mr. Tuke generally is, could perments as are recorded to have been suade himself to assert, that the possessed by the Corinthian Chris. transaction recorded at the begintians; that the same extraordinary ning of John xiii. implies, that the effusion of the spirit, and the saine washing of one another's feet "might evidence of it, the speaking with with at least equal propriety” (as new tongues, are discerned among the Lord's supper) " be now enthem; we will admit, that they have joined as a religious obligation on followed the only true model of a Christians.” p. 116. Let any one Christian church, and that no other read the whole passage attentively, society can pretend to an equal ho- and then determine. We are hardly nour. But it struck us as something less surprised to find, that the very peculiar, that when so extravagant epistle to the Corinthians, upon the representation of which respecting peaceable principles, however, of divine worship our author is con- this sect are perhaps some compendented that the peculiar form of the sation for the blank which they ocworship of his society should rest, casion in the collective and efficient is all at once, not only deserted but power of a nation. contradicted, when it displays in its Respecting dress and address we form and authority, the sacrament shall only ask, where is the explicit of the Lord's supper. Sce chap. xi. scriptural injunction which is so ri
Respecting oaths and war we dif- gidly demanded of us in support fer from the author before us. But of our ceremonies? it is not necessary to repeat what has In taking a review of the peçu. 80 ofteu been said on this subject. liarities of Quakerism, we seen to We refer to Bishop Burnet's exposi- ourselves to discern the defects and tion of the xxxixth article, for our aberrations of its original foundasentiments on the subject of oaths, tion, which, however attenuated and and we approve bis candid allow- modified by passing through the ance for scruples on this head. Our strainers of more rational professors, author has pot noticed i Cor, xv. 31. discover their existence and effects (his favourite Epistle) which, in the to an attentive enquirer, and lead original, is in the very form of an him to regret, that a secession from oath. For our opinion concerning the established church should be war we may refer to our vol. fer occasioned by such insufficient and 1804, pp. 399, &c. and pp. 611, unwarranted causes. “In every so&c. We may observe here that the ciety, civil or religious, submission reliance upon Providence, upon is necessary to the rules of that sowhich the Quaker's condemnation of ciety, in order to prevent the licenall war is founded, would justify a tiousness and confusion which would total neglect of means on every sub- follow, if every member acted upon ject. We know not whether it be his own ideas, without any external agreeable to the principles of Qua- restriction.” Such is the judicious kerism, but it is a fact, of which we observation of our author, p. 159. have correct information, that dur- And lest it should be alleged, that ing certain riots, the professors of such a claim upon the submission tbis mode of religion were as for- and communion of the members of ward in their applications for pro- the church interferes with the paratection to the civil magistrate as any mount dictates and authority of the other description of persons, al- spirit, he again as pertinently obthough, if that protection had been serves, that this objection“ proceeds really necessary and actively afford- on a supposition, which is by no ed, it could not have been attended means admissible, namely, that a with less probability of bloodshed, body of Christians, united in the bethan the attempt to take possession lief of certain principles, is more of a fort, or to repel an invading ene- likely to be misled, than some of the my. And upon what ground this individuals constituting that body." class of society can refuse to relieve The church has only to assume, the distresses of those who have been which our author proves it allowable wounded, or of the families of those to do, that in its whole discipline who have fallen in the defence of it is under “the same divine influtheir country, which will not equally ence which originally formed its restrain their benevolence to the predecessors a distinct people” from greater portion of sufferings pro- the world. See p. 161, in the section duced by other causes, we cannot « On Discipline." conceive; unless a supposed encou- The conclusion, which is pecuragement to war be more criminal liarly addressed 10 the young peothan at least the same encourage- ple of the society, is pious and imment to vice. The passive and pressive; and as far as it relates to
the grand fundamentals of Chris- with much piety, but with too strong tianity, which we have every reason a disposition to cut through perto believe hold a high place in the plexities that cannot be disentanestimation of Mr. Tuke, we cor- gled, and then to claim the credit of dially wish it success.
having disentangled them. We must here, indeed, discriminate in
some degree between these authors. The Divine Glory displayed by the Per. Mr. Smith often speaks the language mission of Sin, a Sermon preached of'a mind strongly impressed with a at a Monthly Meeting of the Society conviction of the inadequacy of all for the Education of Young Men human powers to the full explanafor the work of the Ministry among tion of the deep things of God, and Protestant Dissenters, April 7,1803, professes to expect, though he canwith copious Notes and References. not definitely anticipate, such obBy John Pye Smith. London, jections to his positions, as he has Conder, 1803. Price 28. 8vo. pp. no hope of being able completely 84.
to answer.” We regret to say, we Predestination to Life, a Sermon cannot extend the same observation
preached at Lee Croft, Sheffield, to Dr. Williams, who allows indeed April 18, 1804, before an Associa- the aufulness of his subject, but tion of Ministers, and published by whose sermon, together with its retiRequest, with explanatory Notes. nue of notes, we have in vain searchBy' EDWARD Williams, Ď. D. 2d ed for a single admission, express Edition, corrected and enlarged. or implied, of its dificulty. London, Williams and Smith, A professed solution of the great
1805. Price Is. 6d. 8vo. pp. 54. problein respecting moral evil, In our review of a sermon preached when coming from men who have by Dr. Law before the University plainly paid much attention to reliof Cambridge, we took occasion to gious subjects, seems to be well observe that, in our opinion, that worth the notice of the Christian Obgentleman too much discouraged server; nor is an examination of it the investigation of the abstruser at all the less expedient, because the subjects connected with theology, solution seems to us unsatisfactory. and that opinion we cannot help Weshall, therefore, put together the still retaining. We are apt to fear thoughts which have been suggested that the sermons before us (which to our minds on this subject, by a we associate together, because they consideration of the two sermons are evidently of the same family,) under our review. are censurable for excess on the op
Before we attempt to detail the posite side. Not that the preachers hypothesis ofour authors concerning venture on forbidden ground; but the origin of evil, it will be requisite that they proceed on that which to present our readers with some they have taken, with rather less passages from Mr. Smith, in which diffidence than might have been the nature of sin is discussed. His wished. We are alarmed at the ideas on this head are confessedly boldness, not of their speculations, not altogether new, but we cannot but of their conclusions. The main think that their antiquity will shield topic of the one, and a very promi- them from attack. We find somenent topic of the other, is the old thing to the same effect in one of question respecting the origin of mo- Dr. Williams's notes; but Mr. Smith ral evil, a question probably coeval, is more full.--After asserting (what or nearly so, with moral evil itself, will not be denied) that “ sin is not and which will, in all likelihood, a substantial being,” Mr. Smith prodescend to posterity with all its dif- ceeds: ficulties on its head. It is handled “ Nor is sin an essential property of any by the authors before us, certainly being. On that supposition it wouhl be necessary to the very existence of that est authority for believing; but we being; it would, of course, be an imme. can attach no meaning to the prodiate production from the Author of all be. position on which our author lays so ing Himself; and its presence could not much stress," that the abstract na: possibly involve any blame or fault what.
ture of sin is privative.” It is oba ever in the sinful creature. It must, there, served by no less a man than Locke, fore, be, not an essential, but an accidental immediately after his enumeration property of any being in whom it is found of some of the positive ideas that
“ Nor is there, we are fully convinced, in the nature of sin, or in that which consti
arise from privative causes: !! The tuies sir to be what it is
, any thing that is privative causes I have here assignpositive. This is plainly deducible from the ed of positive ideas, are according to negative positions just laid down, but it is the common opinion; but in truth, capable of farther proof. Every thing poit will be hard to determine whether sitive is either that which constitutes the there be really any ideas from a prireal existence of any being, or it is a part vative cause, till it be determined, of the completeness or perfection of being. All positive existence must therefore, of than motion*.” In truth, every thing
whether rest be any more a privation pecessity, be an object of the ereating and sustaining power of God, the Former of all
may be considered by the mind
either privatively or positively, at things, and by whom all things consist. “ But sin is precisely the reverse of this.
her pleasure; or, which is the saine It is no individual being: it is not essential thing, may receive either a privative to the existence, or conducive to the per- or a positive appellation. Motion fection, of any being: it is a fault, a defect, is considered as privative, and quia failure, an imperfection. I would ex- escence as positive, when we say of press it thus: Sin, in its abstract or formal a moving body that - it is restless ;" nature, is a privation of that perfection, or rest is considered as privative, and moral goodness, which ought to be in an motion as positive, when we say of accountable creature. Or thus: Sin, or moral evil, strictly and properly speaking, less." In this, and in a hundred si
a quiescent body that “it is motionis a tant of conformity in the disposition, milar instances, the positive and prithe will, and the voluntary acts of a ra. tional creature, to the only true rule of vative ideas are, if we may so speak, rectitade, the holiness of God expressed complements to each other, and by the indications of His will.” (p.5-7.) therefore are mutually convertible.
" It may not be unworthy of observation Even the word nothing, as Dr. Johnthat in the original scriptures of the Old son justly observest, has both a poTestament several different terms are em- sitive and a negative meaning, and ployed to denominate sin, and in the New on the confusion of these two mean, Testament a much larger variety is used; ings, the quibbling wit of most of all of which in their native and primary im- the equivocal encomiums upon noport, strongly express the notion of defect
thing is evidently founded. or privation. These may doubtless be con
The abstract term sin seems vasidered as so many testimonies from the oracles of God that the abstract nature of riously used to denote, either a parsin is privative.” (p. 8.)
ticular class of mental qualities, or a “ But sin is not one of the works of the particular class of actions, or perhaps Lord. It is a privation, an absence, a de- more generally, a particular state or fect. It is not among the number of posi- habit of mind. But in what sense, tive beings. It is not among the creatures or with what propriety, either a which the Almighty Maker has formed. class of mental qualities, or a class of Absurd, therefore, and impossible, as well actions, or a state of mind, can be as awfully blasphemous, is the supposition that the Holy God can be the author of sin." affirmed to be in its own nature pri
vative, we are at a loss to determine. (p. 17.)
If by this proposition we are merely That sin is not an essential property to understand, that mankind vulgarof any being, however little we ly affix a negative idea to vice, in might be able to conclude it from
* Ess. Hum. Underst. book ii. ch. 8. experience, we have the very high
+ Life of Rochester.
the same manner as they vulgarly ated must be positive; but sin is “ affix, for whatever reasons, a sub- privation, an absence, a defect," and stantire idea to light, life, or motion, to suppose therefore, that it is one even this does not appear to be true. of the creatures of God, is absurd Vice is very commonly considered and impossible, as well as awfully under the metaphor of a disease, and blasphenous. That such a suppo virtue as the health of the soul: but sition is indeed awfully blasphe. nothing can be more usual than to mous, vo man, who is not a virtual define health privatively as the ab. atheist, will deny; but after the sence of all disease; and perhaps in remarks we have already offered all languages it is no less natural to on privative terms, it will proba. designate virtue by such negative bly be apparent that the absurdity terms as innocence or spotlessness, than which Mr. Smith finds in the proto associate with vice such negative position alluded to, is merely verepithets as impious or unprincipled.
bal. The word create, originally reMr. Smith's appeal on this occa- ferring to material objects, and vulsion, to the various scriptural ap- garly bearing a positive character, pellations of " sin and acts of sin," we retains this character in its metaphocannot think very fortunate. We rical use, and therefore cannot, with. might naturally expect that the sa- out violence, be associated with cred writings, which appear to have words of a simply privative form. been designed for no purpose less Sin may be negutively defined the than to assist our metaphysical spe- absence of virtue, and it is clearly abculations on the nature of moral evil, surd to say that “ the absence of oirwould take up language as they tue could be created;" but it is absurd found it; and, in point of fact, we only in the same sense in which it need hardly intimate that the priva- is absurd to say that "the man who tive appellations of sin which our just now walked freely out of the author cites in his appendix, froin room, created his own übsence." He the New Testament, were familiar to that uses either the one or the other the philosophical writers of Greece. expression, is guilty, not of a conStill his argument might be worth tradiction in terms, but merely of a something, if the inspired authors solecism in language. In the same always appropriated negative terms manner, it would be improper to to vice, and positive terms to virtue; call the absence of light a creuture of but the case is, in both respects, the Almighty; or to assert that he completely otherwise, as the reader creates the absence of peace in the world, may convince himself by the slight- but when these negative expressions est investigation*
are respectively changed for their On the supposed privative nature affirmative equivalents, this mode of of sin, this writer's vindication of speaking may be both proper and the Deity, from the impious charge sublime: “I am the Lord, and there of being the author of sin, is entirely is none else: 1 form the light and cregrounded. Every thing that is cre- ATE DARKNESS: I make peace * Of privative nouns for virtue, furnished
ATE EVILT." by the New Testament, the following are
Since it is possible, although but a few specimens ; edicepsoppa, uncorrupted- remotely possible, that our strictures ness; aplapola, id.; axaxos, innocent ; axe- on Mr. Smith’s mode of proving that φαιος, id. αμιαντος, unpolluted; αναμαρτητος, “ the Supreme Being is not the author sinless ; &c. &c. Of positive terms for sin; of sin," may be misconstrued to imκακία, μιασμος, πονηρια, besides the majority ply some lurking doubt with respect of the particular vices enumerated in Rom. to the doctrine itself; we cannot 1. and other places. Whoever will take think it superfluous here to assert the trouble to look over a few pages of
our thorough acquiescence in that Buxtorf's Hebrew Lexicon, or Parkhurst's, wil undoubtedly find similar instances af doctrine, and our abhorrence not forded by the Old Testamente
+ Isa. chap. xlv. 6, 7.