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Mechanism; an Allegory.
45.3 bave liked to have workmen of their the root of the evil was not very soon own, coming before them with similar detected, yet many of its principal complaints, and expecting to be re- branches were by degrees lopped off. warded ever after with the like libe. It was indeed long before the great rality, without any further exertions on body of the operators found proper optheir part. They were intent only on portunities of thinking and acting for obtaining deliverance from this ima- themselves; and those who were emginary calamity; and concluded that ployed as their guides, were too apt to the great business of that operator, throw obstacles in the way of their whom they confounded with the Ge- exertions and discoveries. Some of nius himself, was to effect this deliver them even endeavoured to obstruct the ance; by making the essence of his free circulation of the instructions, and machine, while it was in the act of being broken to pieces, to discharge its * The writer cannot help conceiving that fury so powerfullyupon his own person, the doctrine of the immortality of the soul that the misery which it inflicted upon lies at the foundation of tbeological error. him, would compensate for that of as 'It appears to deny the reality of man's pri. many of the snifferers as he thought fit; mitive doom, “ dust thou art, and unto while the rest, for no other purpose dust shalt thou return;" since it maintains than his own pleasure or glory, would the uninterrupted existence of the perbe left the ceaseless victims of their ceptive, conscious principle, without which mischief working machines. In con- man is indeed dust, but with which alone sequenco of this strange compensation, he may be said to be pure intelligence. It the essences of the machines of the fabricacs a new doom for him of a very chosen few were supposed to stistain the live and suffer the most exquisite torments
different nature, viz. that he is destined to total change desired, and ever after to amid flames to all eternity. It provides a work in such a manner, as would no 'new deliverance from this new calamity, less inevitably shower down immense by representing the mind of the man Jesus, blessings upon them ; so that from this not merely as a ray of divine intelligence, time forward, they would have little to according to the more modest conceptions do, but to hymn praises to the Genius, of the heathens, but as the infinite Inteland to pipe perpetual songs of joy and ligence itself; and then maintaining that rejoicing, while their unfortunate com- this infinite nature underwent, in its suffer
panions were incessantly uttering the ings on the cross, all the miseries, which most dreadful groans and shrieks, from the immortal souls of the elect were de"the agonizing sufferings to which they stined to undergo in hell, as a substitute would be devoted. In all this there for those miseries. Thus this doctrine is was little to encourage the operators in continually amusing the majority of its voor to cultivate in their minds a proper those about which the Scriptures are conthe sober pursuit of their employment, taries, with different natures, different de
stinies, and different deliveranccs from sense of their obligations to their great ressant. Without this persuasion, it is Benefactor. His gracious promise of highly probable, that the idea of a Gode the future re-fabrication of their ma
man, of endless torments, and of the infinite chines, was little understood or attended Deity suffering in lieu of some of the rays to; and the dreadful circumstances, of his immortal nature, with the change of both real and imaginary, attending the nature, arising from the infusion of the breaking to pieces of the distinguished Holy Ghost, a third person in the God-head Operator's machine, though an event would never have entered into the human common to the whole system of me- mind. Admit that the wbole man " re. chanism, was much more the subject turns to his dust,” and “the glorious of attention and triumph, on account gospel of the blessed Gud,” reversing this of the supposed substitution, than those sad doon, and proclaiming the blessings ofof its glorious re-construction, though the second estate of man, when he shall
become a quickening" or “rivifying this was the only pattern which had been presented of those improved man spirit,".,orer which " death hath no dia ehines, which were hereafter to be minion," shines forth in its genuine lustre.
“ The wages of sin" indeed“ is death;" placed in the hands of the operators for and it is therefore the object of the resurtheir use.
rection from death, and the judgment which The day, however, was adrancing, will follow, to effect our deliverance from and copies of the instructions written both these evils, to destroy him that hard in plain characters were now freely. the power of death, that is the Devil, or and extensively circulated; and thongh sin our deadiy adversary, YOL. 91.
many of thein enjoined under the out giving a very unfavourable bent heaviest pains and penalties, that they the operations of their machines upon should be understood precisely in the some neighbouring operators, who sense which they thought fit to pre- could not enter into their fancies. scribe. They were all, excepting a The time would fail were I to at-Sinall number who had imbibed the tempt to particularize the various dis true spirit of the instrpctions, decidedly coveries and improvements which have against any persons, excepting them- been made and are still in progress. selves, presuming to open their mouths. The attention of a few only' has yet in public asscinblies, so that their cle- been directed to obtain a more distinct cisions for the most part assumed the view of the Genius, and of the operator character of laws; and the body of whose merits have been so signally the operators, who, alas! in general, rewardeil. Jer this attempt, potwithwere too little disposed to it, were standing the opposition and annoyance much prevented from reasoning, or which tliey have met with from the koliting sweet comerse tagetker, upon lovers of ingstery and enchantment, the subjects which related to their they have succeeded, first in distincommon employment. This conduct, guishing them from each other, and of the few who undertook to expound then in recognising each of thein in the instructions, was the more extra- his true character. They have also ordinary, as by so doing, they were learnt that each operator will reap theinselves in the constant habit of benefits, precisely in proportion to the violating an express injunction of the grateful and proper use which he common Master.
makes of the excellent piece of mechaNotwithstanding these obstacles, pism which has been kindly placed in light gradually broke in often through his hands. And by availing themthe medium of some of those guides selves of the advantageous circumwho felt its salutary inftuence. A stances in which they stand for apprelarge body of the operators under one hending the itnre structure of the of them for they generally moved in machines, and the genuine purport of borlies like a fock too implicitly fol- the instructions, with the necessity of lowing a shepherd), embraced the applying closely to their business, persuasion, that more depended upon actuated by a principle of gratitude to elie will of the operators, than some the Genius, of generous regard to the had represented. Hence though they interests of each other, and of all their supposed the nature of their calamities, fellow operators, whatever may be their and the means of their deliverance to progress or want of progress either in be much as has been ahove described, knowledge, skill or industry, there is and were ever remarkable for insisting every reason to conclude, that they may inuch on the great and sudden change rise to distinguished eminence in their in the machines, which they imagined employment. Then when this great was conspicucris in certain violent Genius both of power and beneficence, movements, in reality occasioned by shall perform his proinise of re-fabrithe agitated state of the operators ; yet cating the whole system of mechanism, they certainly laid more stress on their upon that highly improved plan of attention to their business than many which a pattern has been given, they others. And though while following will find little difficulty in applying their employment they were con- their respective instruments to the most tinually fancying that either the good lastingly beneficial uses. or an evil genius was operating upon their machines, and were often relating Sir,
CORRESPOVEST in you
6, 1816. to each other curious particulars were in reality threir own doings, they signs himself T, R. S. proposes to gradually learnt many just, with some questions, which he wishes me to very injudicious distinctions, between answer through the medium of your the right and wrong movements of the Repository ;--the one respecting my machine. Upon the whole they made projected History of Unitarianism, the considerable
progress both in point of other concerning the translation of the skill and industry, though not with. Racovian Catechism, which was long
ago announced as in preparation. Matt. xxiii. ll.
With your leave, Sir, I will in a few
Unitarianism, and Translation of the Racovian Catechism. 453 words give him all the satisfaction in ments in the language and style of the my power on both these points, original text.
'I have certainly not abandoned the l'ustead of the marginal notes with History to which your Correspondent which such a collation would have Fefers.' Ever since the first public disfigured and burthened the pages of notice was given of 'iny desig:i, mny the Translation, without answering attention has been directed to the any purpose of utility, I shall substisubject; and I have been engaged, as tute some short rewarks in those parts opportunity offered, in searching after of the work that relate to points of and collecting materials for its execu- doctrine, respecting which modern cion. A variety of circumstances, Unitarians differ in opinion from the which need not be here eletailed, and, authors of this formulary. By this above all, a severe and long protracted method of an potation, the reader will bodily indisposition, bare hitherto be furnished with a comparative view put it out of iny power to digest and of the two systems; that is, of Unitaarrange the multiform mass of ma- rianism as it is now generally professed, terials which I have succeeded in and of Unitarianism as it was held by bringing together. I can, however, those great and venerable men, who assure your Correspondent, that it is formed so brilliant a constellation in fixed parpose,
if Providence vouch- Poland at the era of the reformation, safe me bealth, to proceed with the and to whom, under Providence, the work; and to devote to it as large a cause of divine truth is so signally in. portion of sime as I can spare, after debted. This course was thought 10 ihe imperative demands of my pro be in some measure necessary, in order fessional and other avocations have to guard those persons, who have yet been answered.
to learn what Unitarianism is, against It affords me satisfaction to be able attributing to its professors in the to inform your correspondent, that the present day opinions which have long Translation of the Racovian Catechison been abandoned, in this part of the after which he inquires, is in such a world at least, as unwarranted by the state of forwardness, that by the time Scriptures. A few other notes will this paper ineets his eye, will, inost be occasionally introduced, containing probably, be in the hands of the references to approved medlemn writers printer: and unless some unforeseen upon some of the topics discussed in accident occur to interrupt its progress the Catechism; and furnishing notices through the press, I have no doubt of additional anthorities for particular of its being before the public by the emendations of the Greek text of the month of December.
New Testament, which have been In my original announcement of supplieel, since the publication even this work I stated my intention to be, of the last edition of this work, by to make the translation from the most the laborious researches of Griesbach recent authorized edition ; but, at the and others, and the present highly same time, to collate the text with improved state of Biblical criticism that of the preceding editious, in order and Biblical knowledge. These are to mark the alterations which had, at to be considered as supplementary to successive periods been made, and the learned and curious notes which thus exhibit the changes which had were published by the last editors of taken place in the opinions of the the Catechism, and which will be Polish Unitarians. I have deemed it ad given with the Translation. I shall viseable, however, on se-consideration, only observe farther, for the informato abandon this part of my design. On tion of your Correspondent, that there a minute comparison of the several will be prefixed to the work a Brief editions, and I believe I am in posses- Sketch of the History of Unitarianism sion of every one that was published on the Continent, from its first apin Latin, I observed that no inaterial pearance in Poland, until the final alteration, in respect to any matter of expulsion of its professors froin that religious belief, had been introduced country in the year 1660. This will by the learned editors of those which exhibit a faint outline of what the were last printed. The chief diffe- larger History is intended to comprize. rences consist of explanatory additions,
I am Sir, when the subjects appeared to be ob
Your's, &c. scurely stated or insufficiently explain
THOMAS REES. éd; and of some considerable improve
July 5, 1816. and I know of no party in the Church I
BELIEVE it is very generally that is not occasionally loud and
imputed as a fault to the liberal bitter enough against all' Schismatics Dissenters, (most of whom are now (i. e. Dissenters) and Unitarians mag denominated Unitarians) both by their '&xy. Now, to attribute a fault orthodox brethren, and even by many (supposing it to be a fault) to those of their own body, that controversial, who are least chargeable with it, or doctrinal preaching is becoining too
appears to me very much like “
pullprevalent among them. I have fre. ing out the mote out of thy brother's quently of late heard this style of eye, and behold a beam is in thine preaching severely condemned, and own eye."
own eye." I cannot help, again considered as a grievance by some of expressing my surprise, that the dethose who attend on it.
merit of controversial preaching (if it That our opponents should con- has demerit) should be most laid to plain of this style of preaching is not the charge of those who least practise io be wondered at, as by its means the it. errors of the prevailing systems are I know that a bad construction exposed to view, and it seems to be must of course be laid on every thing The fashion of the day to belabour the done by the Unitarians, even poor Unitarians with every kind of things praiseworthy in others
. Thus, accusation that may be conccived rather an Unitarian, who arows his religious than proved. Thus by a writer in the opinions, and declares his reasons for Quarterly Review they are accused of doing so, is unpardonably arrogant indecency and ribaldry, ihough without and presumptuous, destitute of a real quoting chapter and verse. But my religious principle, devoid of charity, surprise is, that any, who are in the and neglectful of piety and a devomain with us, and who have embraced tional spirit. But let us now for a at least a comparatively pure system of moment suppose the Unitarian reliChristian doctrines, should object to giously to follow the course chalked the occasional use of that kind of out for him by his friends. While the public instruction, which is the most practice of controversial preaching is effectual means of diffusing the know, general and incessant against him, let ledge of them in the world. As I him wholly withhold all controversial have in some instances heard this subjects from the pulpit: while others objection strongly urged by people of on every hand are denouncing his great respectability, and cultivated religious sentiments as heretical and ininds, and as possibly it inay be more damnable; while he is represented as generally extended than many are belonging to the fraternity of Deists, aware of, I have thought it my duty and a more dangerous enemy to to draw the attention of your readers religion than Atheists because more to the subject, that it may be fully concealed ; while all this and much discussed, and by that means become more is going on on every side of him, better, and more generally understood, let not a word drop from his lips "In a multitude of counsellors there which shall lead any one to suppose is wisdoin,"
that he is conscious of any difference, It has rather excited my surprise to of any offence, of any opposition, of hear this style of preaching objected, any denunciations against him; while arclusively, against the Unitarians, as if others are zealously contending for it were much more reprehensible in error (as in his opinion they must be) them than in others. I believe it may let him not open his mouth even for be correctly stated as a matter of fact, the truth-lei 'the unclean spirit of that it does not prevail to half the dumbness incurably possess him. extent (to speak within compass) Now let us suppose that the Unitarian among those who have been called
were to follow this good advice of his rational Dissenters, it does among friends, what construction would they the orthodox, both within and with in that case put on his conduct? They out the pale of the church. Indeed would then with much reason' urge the discourses of the evangelical party against hiin, that he is conscious that in the church, of the whole body of his principles are bad and false, and Methodists, and of the Orthodox that he is ashamed to avow them; Dissenters in general, consist almost that they do not bear to be brought entirely of controversial materials; forth to the light, and to be made
On Doctrinal, or Controversial Preaching.
457 manifest : and they would say this impressed with the obligations which with a great appearance of truth. For, we are under to perform our duty. suppose two persons sold manufactured We go not to inform our reason, but goods, and one of them exposed his to excite and improve our feelingswares in the most public manner, and not to be informied, but to be pershewed them in the best light, but suaded. the other very carefully deposited them As to the affirmative part of your in the darkest corner of his warchouse, object in going to a place of worship, and shewed the greatest reluctance to well and good; and are not proper expose them to view it is not diffi- means made use of to answer it? cult to guess in what manner even The Scriptures are read ; devout vnprejudiced persons would be dis- hymns and psalms are sung; and your posed to construe their inotives respect- wants and devout wishes are made ively.
known unto God by the common l'have been told by those who are prayers and supplications of the con: averse to the introduction of contro- gregation. Yet more--the sermons versial subjects into the pulpit, that are generally of a moral and practical the practice is a sure mark of bigotry. tendency. But is it reasonable that Be it so.
“If I by Beelzebub cast your feelings be exclusively regarded out demons, by whom do your chil- that public worship should inonopodren cast them out?" Let
every your affections, and banish your denomination take as much as belongs reason: Must your pious affections to them of this bigotry, and let not and devotional feelings be necessarily other sects throw a stone against the injured, and the word becoine unproUnitarians, I will not say till they are fitable to you, if sometimes your themselves without sin, but only till minds be informed concerning the they have as little as the Unitarians in doctrines of Christianity, if your intel
lectual powers, those which make you This as an argumentum ad hominem rank among the higher order of beings, is as conclusive as I can wish. But I be called into exercise? Has God in will not rest the matter here. I con- the institution of public worship, made tend that occasional preaching on the provision only for your affections, doctrines of Christianity is both proper and left your reason to shift for and necessary. How are the Scrip- itself? tures to be explained if not from the As to the higotry of controversy, it pulpit? How are we to get rid of the is a quality which does not necessarily anti-christian doctrines which have belong to it. Controversy may be, and been so long received, if we are not ought to be managed with a charitable to utter a syllable against them? How and even brotherly spirit towards those are the minds of those who read but whose opinions we oppose. The little to be informed and enlightened? manner and the spirit constituite and the bulk of all congregations bigotry, not the opposition of senii. consists of such persons: and, it may ment. There is no bigotry in a liberal be asked finally, what are we to teach exposition of our opinions; the essence if not Christian truth, the preaching of bigotry consists in the damnatory of which, of course, is controversial spirit, the exasperation of feeling, the preaching, if it has been contro evil surmises, the ungenerous susverted ?
picions and the unkind propensitics The answer which I have heard which are attendant on controversy made to this last interrogatory may be conducted in an unchristianlike mani considered as another argument against ner. controversial preaching worthy of brief I have been told by the opposers of notice.
all controversial preaching, we have We do not go, it is replied, to a a sufficient knowledge of the doetrines place of worship ready prepared with of religion, but we want constantly our critical scales to weigh arguments; to be impressed with a sense of our we do not go there to be puzzled with duty, and to have our devotional feel definitions and syllogisms; we do not ings habitually exercised. go for the exercise of our intellectual I cannot admit the correctness of the powers; but we go for the sake of first part of the argument. Very few cherishing devout affections towards indeed have a comprehensive knowi ebe Deity, and to be more dceply ledge of the Christian Scriptures, and