Imatges de pÓgina

the style and manner of Aspasio vindicated, prove, that Mr Hervey wrot it. That evidence, I must be excused for thinking, remains still unshaken, after all the story of Mr Cudworth. If that gentleman's heart was profligate enough to prompt him to an infamous forgery, of which however there is no proof: yet hardly was his genius adequate for a tásk, in which the most artful and cautious impostors have generally failed; counterfeiting, I mean, throughout a work of considerable length, the most strik. ing and characteristical indications of authenticity.

Mr K. insists, p. 37: 6 seg. that I confess mistakes in Afpafio vindicated, both in doctrinal sentiments and illustrations of scripture, and yet pronounce them equal, if not fuperior, to any of his controversial writings published in his lifetime : whence he argues, I must think there are such mistakes in these other writings.

Had Mr K. read the preface leisurely, and with attention, he would have observed I only say, “ mistakes there

may be, &c.;" and found my faying fo, fimply on this, that Mr Hervey was not infallible, This is no more a confellion of actual mistakes in Aspasio vindicated, than acknowledging myself liable to err, would be a confession, that some of my present opinions are actually false.

Though I had confessed what Mr K. alledges, his consequence would not hold. I think some of the works of Chemnitius, Gerhard, Bengelius, and other Lutheran divines, superior in value to certain modern Calvinist pieces; in which last there are, notwithstanding, fewer errors : and it is as consistent with equalling, or even preferring Aspalio vindicated, to Mr Hervey's other works, to suppose lesser inistakes in the first, from which the last are free.

Far less would it follow, from my acknowledging miItakes in all Mr Hervey's writings, that I looked upon them as un profitable, and not calculated to do good. (See Appeal, p. 37.) If no books in which there are any mistakes are calculated to do good, I am afraid no bulky book in the world, except the Old Teltament in Hebrew, and the New in Greek, would deserve a reading; nay, nor even these, unless we knew they were exactly printed from copies in which there was no error. Does not Mr Kershaw ihink, that not a few mistakes in Theron and Afpafio have


been pointed out by Mr Wesley, in his letter to the author ? and yet does he not say, p. 38. “ It is certain Mr Hervey's writings have been weapons, by which God “ has done great things, in instructing the foolish, convin“ cing the erroneous, &C..?". Mr Wesley has recommended a number of books at the end of his Reflections on the conduct of human life. I suppose he will readily acknowledge, that there may be mistakes even in his own tracts and Christian library; and that there are mistakes in Epic. tetus, and Marcus Antoninus, not to say Terence, Horace, or Martial. All of them, however, appear in the list ; which, it is evident from the design of the book to which they are annexed, they would not have done, if he had not looked upon them as profitable, and calculated to do good. Is candor confined to Methodists! and are all else such bigots, that they cannot esteem a book useful, in which they fee fome small mistakes !

What occasion then has the preface given for the excla. mation, (Appeal, p. 37.) “Where is the glory of Mr “ Hervey himself, if all his writings are so full

of mistakes? His remembrance is dear to many. But if this be the " case, as it


from the above, we may truly fay, in " mournful accents, Where is his glory?" Is saying that there are mistakes in all Mr Hervey's writings, (had that indeed been said), the same thing with fåying, they are full of mistakes where were Mr Kershaw's eyes, if he fancied I said fo ? and where was his honesty, if he did not?

What is faid, Appeal, p. 46. has more appearance both of fairness and of argument: “ Can that be fcriptural, “ which mistakes, 1. Scripture illustrations (I should ra" ther have faid proofs)? 2. Doctrinal sentiments, allow. " ing they were the lesser fort only, and but few in num“ ber likewise ? By the fame charitable allowance, how

ever, I hope foon to make it appear, that the editor “ must either allow Mr Wesley to be orthodox, or him“ felf possibly a little too partial.” If Mr Wesley's mistakes were only in a few illustrations of certain passages of scripture, (not scripture illustrations, which was not the phrase in the preface), or in tesser doctrinal sentiments, I acknowledge, his writings might be in the main orthodox




and useful ; though, at the fame time, guarding against these lesser errors might be no useless employment for one who had fufficient leisure: but if his mistakes are numerous, and some of them capital ones too, the recommending Mr Hervey's writings will be no reason for recommending his. How numerous Mr Wesley's mistakes are, I bave shown in the preface, and will further show in the sequel of this defence. How important some of them are, eig. Justification through our own faith and obedience, and the sinless perfection of all born of God, I teed pot fay.

But Mr Kershaw would have the public believe, that Mr Wesley cannot be justly charged with the first of these er.

He tells us, p. 41. Mr Wesley uniformly asserts, and that without wavering since the 1738, that no man is justified in the fight of God by any works done by him of any kind, either before or after believing, nor by fanctifying grace inherent in him; but by the righteousness of Christ alone, (including both what he did and suffered), imputed to us, and received by a true and lively faith ; and that faith itself does not justify as it is a work, but as it apprehends Chrift; and that if Mr Wefley has styled faith a condition of justification, he has told us, in the first vo• lume of his fermons, that all he nieans is, that a man can. not be justified without it. From p. 51.-74. he attempts to fhow, that Mr Wesley has uniformly explained the doce trine of justification in this manner. Many of the exprefLions to which he appeals might have been honestly used by one who believed not the imputation of Christ's active obe. dience, some of them I think could not ; particularly what is cited, p. 58. from Wesley's Principles of a Mechodift:

Christ is now the righteousness of every one that truly “ believes in him; he for them paid the ransom by his " death; he for thein fulfilled the law in his life : fo that

now in him and by him every believer may be called a « fulfiller of the law." . And, p.60. from his notes on the epiftle to the Romans, “ We conclude then, that a

man is justified by faith; and even by this, not as it is a “ work, but as it apprehends Christ.'

But though thele and other passages prove that Mr Wefley has afferted the scripture doctrine of justification


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through the righteousness of Christ, in writings both of an older and later date ; what name is due to an attesta. tion, that he has uniformly, and without wavering, asserted that doctrine? I shall say nothing of his letter to Mr Hervey, as it has been so often reprinted : but I would remind Mr Kershaw, that in the year 1 745, Mr Wesley published an extract of Mr Baxter on justification. There an attempt is made, p. 3, 4, 5. to confute the opinion that Christ did as properly obey as suffer in our stead ; and that his active obedience is imputed to us for the making of us righteous, and giving us a title to the kingdom. It is argued, p. 249–26. that it is faith in a proper sense that is said to justify, and not Christ's righteousness only, which it receives: and that faith properly justifies, not as apprehending Chrift and his righteousness, but as fulfilling the condition of a new covenant. And, to crown all, it is maintained, p. 26,-31. that repentance, forgiveness of injuries, new obedience, 6c. are conditions of pardon and eternal life: and that therefore, when it is said that faith only justifies, the meaning is, that faith justifies, as implying all other parts of the condition of the new co. venant, and as the great master-duty of the gospel, to which all the rest are reducible.

This year, 1765, Mr Welley has published a large treatise on justification, extracted from Mr John Goodwin, as containing the real scripture-doctrine relating to that article. The great design of that treatise is to prove, that ne act of faith is imputed to men for righteousness; and that the active obedience of Christ, or his fulfilling the mo. ral law, was never intended by God to be that righteousness wherewith we are justified. Mr Wesley tells us, Mr Goodwin was a firm and zealous Calvinist at the time he wrote that book. If he professed himself so, in which I hope Mr Wesley is wrong informed), his integrity and orthodoxy were much of a piece. One thing is certain, there are few books in English, in which the Popish and Arminian objections against the imputation of Christ's ac. tive obedience have been more keenly urged. If, then, Mr Kershaw would ndicate his assertion of Mr Wesley's uniform orthodoxy, he must maintain that the following propositions are conGftent: We are justified by the righ


teousness of Christ alone, including both what he did and fuffered. Christ's fulfilling the moral law, or active obe. dience, was never intended to be that righteousness wherewith we are justified. --- Faith does not justify as it is a work, but as it apprehends Chrift. Faith properly justifies, not as apprehending Christ and his righteousness, but as an act of obedience to a law, or as fulfilling the condi. tion of a new covenant.-No man is justified in the light of God, by any works done by him either before or after believing, nor by fan&tifying grace inherent in him. Repentance, forgiveness of injuries, new obedience, &c are conditions of pardon and eternal life: and faith justifies as the great master-duty of the gospel, to which all the rest are reducible. When Mr Kershaw has reconciled these glaring contradictions, he bids fair for gratifying the sceptics with a proof, that darkness and light, falfehood and truth, absurdity and evidence, are one and the same thing. “ Doth a fountain send forth at the same

place fweet water and bitter? My brethren, these

things ought not so to be." Whether the doctrine of juftification, as asserted in the confessions of the Lutheran and Reformed churches, or as explained by Arminian divines, is preferable, has indeed been disputed. But his understanding must be of a monstrous make, who can digest both as equally wholesome.

Mr Welley, in a late advertisement about Goodwin on justification, has apologised for himself in a way very different from Mr Kershaw. He tells us, as the expression, the imputation of the righteousness of Christ for justification, was capable of a sound sense, his brother and he, not only did not oppose it, but sometimes even used it themselves, tspecially in verse, where allowance is made for phrases not exactly proper. But they soon found the inconvenience of those expressions. Antinomianism came in with a full tide. They were persuaded that those phrafes were not only unscriptural, but dangerous in the highest degree, tending to destroy the very end of our Lord's coming into the world, namely, to save his people from the fins; yea, in fact, made thousands easy though not thus faved. Yet the fear of grieving any who were upright of heart, and yet wedded to those modes of


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