Imatges de pÓgina

every class, because to every class a solemn last day, the day when the reformation from the evil propensities spirits of those that go down to the of human nature, is of positive neces- graves finally hear the voice of the sity and obligation: but particularly Son of God, and pass to their great with regard to those, who, from be- account. The body returns unto the ginning with classical studies, have earth as it was, and the spirit unto been unavoidably accustomed to ideas God who gave it.".. of heathen mythology and heathen The succeeding and longest treatise errors, which, it is to be feared are in these volumes is on Everlasting in some degree ever subversive, in Punishinent,” which Mr. Mathews young minds, of those reverential expected would probably “ meet some ideas respecting God and his glo- strong objections among the more rious attributes, which are so essen- timorous and inconsiderate part of tial to the faith of Christians.”

mankind." But he had suffered early After recommending two hours in in life too much, by having been a day to be set apart for a lecture on prevailed on, by that species of disa those subjects, he says, “children in cipline in the Society of Friends called general do not want for curiosity, they private dealing, to condemn the freedo not want a readiness of conception, dom of his religious sentiments, when they are seldom wanting in admira- the object and end of them was to tion at a new and curious discovery: vindicate the ways of God to man, Neither (which is the most animating as the all-benevolent Parent of the consideration of all) are they unsus- universe, to withhold the full expresceptible of the most lively and reve- sion of his sentiments any longer, now rential impressions of the Supreme he was happily freed from such bane· Being. The doctrines of his fatherly ful ecclesiastical imposition. His acgoodness, and of his exalted and count is as follows: " I think it right most adorable attributes, are subjects to say, in this place, that under my : within the reach of their quick and own full persuasions respecting the lively conceptions, when treated with subject, I could not with an easy a suitable seriousness and concern mind, avoid treating on it in the for their well being. And it may manner I have done. In my child-, well be considered as one of the most hood I found it impossible to fix lamentable defects of common educa- belief in the common notion of endtion, that so little nse is made of the less torments; as I grew older, my wonders of natural philosophy, to sentiments occasionally became known. instil into, and advance the princi- I was assailed, in consequence, by' ples of real religion, in the tender and some few zealous and implicit be.' comparatively unpolluted minds of the lievers among my friends,' particurising generation !"

larly by one, for whom, on account The 2nd voluine consists of “ Mis- of his moral character, I had a concellaneous Maxims and Thoughts," siderable respect. And being under arranged under more than a hundred the common frailty of human nature, heads, and of some Serious Reflections I was influenced for a short time, to on fifteen select Passages of Scrip- doubt of my right to profess, even ture.

contractedly, belief in the future The 3rd volume opens with a Dis- dispensation of universal refinement sertation on Marriage, which young from iniquity. persons may peruse with much ad “In this interval, and at the instance vantage, and especially those who are of the person io whom I allude, I was in danger of forming hasty, impru- prevailed on to sign something like a dent or unwarrantable engagements. condemnation of the freedom of my The next article is entitled “ Con- sentiments. But though this was not siderations on the Last Day," and is a declaration of my belief in a partial a candid inquiry, how far the general ultimate salvation, I soon found conand popular opinions are revealed demnation of mind for my wavering truths, and are " sanctioned or refuted and timidity: and I can truly say, by that reason which is one chief pri- that no other single circumstance of vilege and glory of human nature." my whole life hath ever given me so The result of this examination with much uneasiness. I am now cheered Mr. Mathews was, that to every in- with the rational, Scriptural, and dividual “ the day of death jó the as I think, glorious doctrine of the




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Memoir of Mr. William Mathews. punishment of divine justice being compared to their present advancement eventually subservient to an universal in heavenly wisdom and knowledge. purification and fitness for heavenly The martyr concludes by saying, “ as habilations !"

universal love and simplicity of devoI wave giving even a summary of tion are within the fiat of our most the arguments in this treatise, as un- wise and merciful Father, we are necessary to your readers. It may privileged to hope, at least, that this suffice to repeat the author's observa- our heavenly society will be ultimately tion, that " five places only occur in joined by all beings that are capable the whole New Testameni, wherein of receiving refinement from an intithe future misery of the wicked is nite influence! Such are the sentidescribed as eternal or everlasting; ments on which I dwell with delight, Matt. xviii. 8. xxv. 41. 46. Mark iii. when I contemplate the possibilities 29, and 2 Thess. i. 9. That the ori- of heavenly goodness. To the source ginal and derivative Greek words eternal of all felicity, and of all glory, aww, eternity, and alw2105, eternal or be ascribed thanksgiving and praise ! everlasting, may in general, as in many Such," adds the apostle, “is the proplaces they necessarily do, signify only per theme of heaven, of all happy à limited duration : and that their gradations of created existences, up to import is certainly, much more general the nearest resemblance of the nature and indefinite than the English words of God himself!" eternity and everlasting are understood In 1798, Mr. M. published “a to be in our language."

new and seasonable Address to the - An instructive dialogue follows be- people called Quakers relative to tween four persons, iwo of whom Tithes and Taxes," under the signature thought the author a well-meaning of Catholicus. The object he aimed man, who had argued the subject at was to render the Society more with candour and piety; and the consistent, tolerant and Christian, by others that he was a sceptic and little contrasting their professed scruples better than an Infidel. To this are against tithes, with their general payadded a few pages of judicious quota- ment of war taxes, laid on expressly tions from some of the best writers in for its support, and strictly approillustration of the author's views, and priated to that purpose. A few years a well imagined dialogue in the world after he published several small tracts. of spirits, between Theophilus, Ze- relative to the Society's treatment of lotes, and another person named Pur- Hannah Barnard, of Hudson, in gatus, whom neither of them, while North America, who was first silenced. on earth, considered “ as an heir of as a minister and afterwards excomsalvation,” and Zelotes had rashly municated, for objecting to the pracpronounced to be “a co-worker with tice of war as.contrary to the will of the prince of the bottomless pit, in God, in every age of the world, and which his inheritance shall be for on such other charges of erroneous ever."

faith, as the investigation of the Mr. Mathews next gives a much original accusation upon the most more rational picture of a future state inquisitorial principles enabled thenı of punishment adapted to produce a to bring forward. gradual reformation of the worst of Soon after these events, which inankind, than that of endless tor- excited much attention among the ments exhibits, in a dialogue sup. Friends, Mr. Mathews published the posed to have taken place between first volume of his “ Recorder," and Henry VIII. and the Dukes of Somer- in the next year, 1803, a second voset and Northumberland, his cotem- lume. The plan of the work is such poraries, all of whom are represented as to invite its continuance by other as sensible of their former 'vices, as hands, but whether it be continued condemning them, and as acquiring or not, the author and cditor of the

degrees more virtuous disp ons. first two volumnes has conferred a The volume ends with an appro- benefit upon such of his readers as are priate dialogue between the Apostle friends to free inquiry and lovers of Paul and a Protestant Martyr, each primitive Christianity: of whom acknowledges the imper

The Ist volume of this work confection of their state on earth when tains, 1. Mr. Portsmouth's Essay on

Church Discipline. 2. Mr. M.'s Post- subordinate to the Father, doriving his script on Tithes. 3. A Detail of being from Him; receiving from Him Ensuing Occurrences. 4. An Article his divine power, authority, and other " to Exemplify the Narrow, Bigotted attributes, and acting in all things and Mischievous Spirit, which becoines wholly according to the will of the tolerated and fostered in the Society of Father." 15. Of the Holy Ghost or Friends by the continuance of the Spirit. Under this head, the last in mistaken Testimony with regard to the volumc, Mr. Mathews first exTithes." 5. Extracts from the second hibits 28 passages, in which the Holy Pamphlet of Catholicus. 6 to 10. Spirit is represented as the author and Sundry Pieces relative to the Case and worker of miracles, even of those done Treatment of Hannah Barnard. 11. by, or by means of our Lord himself, Plain Arguments from Reason and in the principal actions of his life on Scriptore, against the presumptuous earth. 2. Fifty two passages wherein Doctrine of Eternal Punishment. 12. the Holy Spirit is declared to be the Of the Divinity of Christ, as stated by inspirer of the prophets and apostles, Robert Barclay, the Apologist for the and the director and teacher of the Quakers, shewing that he did not apostles, in the work of their minisprofess to believe the co-eternity and try. 3. Forty seven passages wherein co-equality of the Son with the Father, the Holy Spirit is declared to be the as an uncreated, self originated, and sanctifier of all hearts, and the cometernal God!" 13. Of God the Fa- forter and supporter of good men, in ther. This small tract exhibits, 1. the practice of their duty. 4. Eighteen

Those passages in the New Testament passages wherein are contained the wherein He is styled the one or only other highest expressions, conceming God. They are about seventeen. 2. the Holy Spirit in the New Testament. The chief passages about 320 wherein 5. Eleven passages wherein is declared He is styled God absolutely, by way what honour is duç to the Holy Spirit, of eminence and supremacy. 3. Pase and how his good motions are to sages wherein He is styled God, with he diligently obeyed, and not resisted. peculiarly high titles, &c. about 105. 6. Fifty passages wherein it is ex4. About ninety passages wherein it pressly declared that the Holy Spirit is declared that all prayers and praises is subordinale to the Father, derives ought primarily to be offered to Him, his being from him, is sent by him, and that erery thing ought to be and acts in all things according to his ultimately directed to his honour and supreme will and pleasure. 7. Twelve glory: A few notes are annexed prin- passages wherein the Holy Spirit is cipally from Hopton Haynes and Dr. represented as being sulordinate to the Samuel Clarke.“ 14. Of the Son of Son, being his spirit, and sent or given God. Under this head Mr. Ma- by him. 8. Forty-three passages thews exhibits, 1. About twelve pas. wherein the FATHER, Son, and Holy sages in the New Testament wherein Spirit are mentioned in various ways the Son, in certain senses, is styled, together. Well might the author in or supposed to be styled God. ?. the preface to this volume say that in About" eight passages wherein it is the latter part of it, “ the reader will declared that the world was made by find such a weight of sacred testimony, (or through) him. 3. About 136 pas- as must bear down all the notional sages wherein are contained the other irreverent cavils, of all opposers of the highest titles, perfections and powers, simple unity of God, the supreme ascribed or ascribable to the Son in the adorable Father of the universe." New Testament, either positively, or After the introduction to the second by probable, or by doubtful construc- volume, the first article is, a Brief tion. 4. Passages wherein are set Biographical Account of Mr. Thomas forth the honour and reverence which Emlyn, with some Extracts from his are to be paid to the Son. These Works. 2. His Humble Inquiry into (but uniformly not implying supreme the Scriptural Account of Jesus adoration) are about 70. 5. Three Christ, a scarce but valuable tract of hundred and ten passages in the New above forty pages. 3. The Saridy Testament quoted at length wherein Foundation Shaken, by William the Son is declared, positively, and Pean, with Remarks by the Editor. by the clearest implication, to be 4. The Last Thoughts of Dr. Whitby,

Memoir of Mr. William Mathews.



containing his Correction of several death had no terrors! I have no
Passages in his Commentary on the doubt but she had an all-sufficient
New Testament. 5. An Historical share in that divine dependance which
Account of two Notable Corruptions breathes forth the language 0
of Scripture, (1 John v: 7. and i Tim. Death, where is thy sting? 0 Grave
iii. 16.) by Sir Isaac Newton, pp. 70, where is thy victory? On the morn-
with remarks on both by the Editor. ing of her last day, her little grandson
The latter of these valuable works was about seven months old being brought
first published entire from the MS. im to her, she embraced and kissed him,
the author's hand writing, in the pos- then dozed on her sofa till near five,
session of Dr. Ekens, Dean of Car- when she was carried to her bed again,
lisle, in Dr. Horsley's splendid edition where she lay composed and almost
of Sir Isaac's Mathematical and Phi- motionless till near seven, when we
losophical Works, and has never since ascertained that imperceptibly to us
been printed except in this volume. she had passed out of mortality, and
The sixth article consists of “ Extracts I have no doubt into the realms of
and Reflections on the Scripture Doc-immortality and eternal lise.
trine of Future Panishments." The “ Such was the sweet deliverance of
extracts are from STONEHOUSE. Then my invaluable companion from all
follows a Letter from Mr. Samuel her pains and exercises, which during
Bourn, of Norwich, to the Rev. Sa- the last ten years had been frequent
muel Chandler, D.D. in favour of and hard to bear. A companion she
the doctrine of annihilation, not as was to me of unceasing affection and
true, but as more consistent with the sympathy, through every adversity of
moral character of God, than the six and thirty years! I feel affected
doctrine of endless torment. The with her absence in proportion to the
two next. Essays are mostly from strength of my attachment. But I
Stonehouse. The first treats of that death repine not. All is well with her.
which the Scripture calls our LORD's All has been done in mercy, and in
last enemy; the second is intended the exercise of infinite wisdom. And
to shew that the lake which is the se- my desire is, that the short portion of
cond, and most properly called, death, time that can now remain to me;
· will, as our Lord's last enemy, be inay be spent in reverence and the
ultimately disannulled. The

con- fear of God!"
cluding article is extracted from a Mr. Mathews some time after this,
pamphlet then recently, published once more engaged himself in the

on the Scripture Doctrine of Uni- duties of a Christian minister, by versal Redemption, by John Simpson, entering into a kind of social engage· M. A. a minister of the Gospel, and ment to prepare a religious discourse one of the most amiable of men. The in MS. iwice in a month, and to work itself,” says the Editor, “evin- deliver the same in his turn, with ces an intimate acquaintance with the other brethren at the - Bath Penitensubject, which he has created with tiary. “In this employ,” says he, in that learning, accuracy, clearness of a letter to a friend, written in 1808, arrangement and seriousness, which, “ I have some satisfaction: but it - while they do him the highest credit will add nothing to my credit among as a scholar, must render him equally the professors of immediate inspiration estimable as a Christian."

• for every good word and work."
In January, 1805, Mr. Mathews's The following extract of another
wife died. Soon after this event, in a letter, written in April, 1809, when
letter to a friend he says, “My poor " in poor health,” exhibits briefly and
long-afflicted, ever-affectionate wife clearly his serious objection to the
has been taken from me. She de- leading doctrines of reputed ortho-
parted this, in well-grounded hope of a doxy, and the genuine humility of his
better life on the 13th instant, and on mind.
the 19th I attended her remains to “ I have lived now," says he, " up-
the silent gravc: that house of final wards of sixty-two years, and though

obscurity appointed for all living! by temperance and regularity of labour
. But such was the preparation of her I have been favoured to inaintain a
mind, such the refinement of her comfortable share of bodily and mental
- immortal spirit, that iu her view abilities, I cannot expect to last much

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longer. The sands of life must soon planatory Appeal,” to the present day be run. This consideration, with the (now thirty years), I am not conscious removal of almost all the friends of of having changed one religious opimy early life (dear Joseph Woods ex- nion. Certainly no person could recepted), powerfully admonish me to. port with truth, that I had applied for prepare for the final allotment!- re-admission into the Society of Friends. Whenever, in Divine wisdom, which Membership in any particular society is ever connected with Divine good. is of small account to me. I someness, it shall arrive, I expect to find it times attend the meetings of Friends, an awful period : and but for the hopes because I love their simplícity and siof Divine mercy, how unspeakably lence: but I would not join any soawful would it be!

ciety under heaven which holds or “I cannot after long and most serious favours the doctrine of a Trinity of meditation venture to place salvation Gods! or that does not explicitly deto the account of “the meritorious clare its belief in the plain Scripture blood of the atonement,” about which doctrine of One God,' and of Jesus I hear so much continually from dif- Christ his Son, as the created and sent ferent professors. No! Convicted I of the Father, deriving all power from sland, as well as many of thein, of him. great unworthiness, and that nothing “ With respect to that excellent short of the Divine mercy can cancel Christian, Hannah Barnurd, I continue the demerits of a life of infirmities and to think she was shamefully treated. transgressions! But I cannot (and I “ With best respects, though perhumbly trust ( ought not so to do) sonally unknown, I remain thy sincere seek a covering, however sacred in its friend, William Mathews." character, which the wise and humble As the autumn approached, his inof all antient generations knew nothing firmities gradually increased; but he of. The broad and sacred foundation was able to attend the funeral of his of the mercy of God, humbly implored, aged and venerable friend, Mr. Elijah was the foundation of prophets and Waring, at Witney, in the latter part apostles ; and though Jesus Christ be- of November. From this time his came the chief comer stone of the health still more rapidly declined, and spiritual building, in his universal very much disabled him from dischurch, yet was the foundation never charging the duties of an executor to changedl, uor can it change, for ever Mr. Waring's will. He was however and ever! The testimony of all the not confined to his chamber but a few gospels proclaim in substance this ; the days, and died at his house in Grosrestimony of the blessed Jesus abun- venor Buildings, Bath, on the 12th of - dantly confirms the doctrine. Of all April, leaving only one daughter, and thie enthusiasm which has prevailed his grandson above-mentioned. among Christian professors, surely the was universally esteemed by all who orthodox artificial system of salvation had the happiness of being, well is the most unaccountable. But of acquainted with his worth, and most these things we have too long reflected by those who knew him best. His with reverence, to have any disagree- funeral was attended by many memment."

bers of the Bath and West of England It seems, however, that a rumour Agricultural Society, as well as by many had been circulated among the Qua, members of the Society of Friends, kers, that he had at length seen and and others of his acquaintance, out of confessed his errors, and sought to be sincere respect to his memory. I reunited to their Church. Under this cannot perhaps close this memoir impression, a respectable member of better than by annexing to it some the Society wrote to inquire whether elegant lines which Mr. Mathews such was the fact His reply is as wrote without intending them for the follows:

public eye; but as they afford so just “ Bath, Aug. 19, 1816. and pleasing a picture of a pious mind « Esteemed Friend,

calmly viewing the near approach of " I received thy letter of the 16th, that change, which is destined to waft and am obliged by thy frank inquiries. the whole human race to the shores of | shall answer them very briefly. ejernity, I would not withhold them l'rom the time I published iny“ Es from your readers. They were "06


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