" of such mere positive Laws and Institutes " shall be allow'd at all." * This seems to be a determined Refolution to banish Christianity (as far as his Pen can contribute to it) out of the World, with its three great, divine, holy Inftitures, which are so positively appointed, Baftism, the Lord's Supper, and the Worship of God thro the Mediator Jesus Christ, its peculiar Glory and Distinction, to the greatest Honour of God, and to the highest Benefit and Comfort of Men, let who will offer to protect, or make any Apology for it: nay, notwithstanding those Positives appear to all other reasonable Men to be purposely calculated and ordain'd from Heaven as the best Means in the World for improving in, and carrying on the Moral Law of Righteousness to the highest Human Perfection; and that they have a rational, moral Connexion with, and a real efficacious Tendency to that End, as Experience testifies, where-ever there are any reał serious Chriftians to be found; and consequently wor.. thy both of the Name, and of an universal Reception, as a Reasonable Service, the moft defirable, perpetual, and only true Religion that can be propounded to the World, by degrees, or settled at last firmly in it: yet to him solely it shall appear, by himself singly it shall be accounted as the Reverse, be construed, be milrepresented and traduced, as having no fuch. tendency, Pag. 177, and throughout his Book. But tho' he appears resolutely and inflexibly bent upon his inglorious Point against common Conviction, and the clearest and strongeft Argument to the contrary, still I hope he will at length, relent of this Temper, and rather than

* Page 444.


put out the Eyes of every body for seeing differently from himself, begin to think there must be some Fault in his own.

THESE are some of the Noftrums of our great Religion-Mender ; more might be mention'd, had I compass for it in this place. He is in perfect Harmony with the two Oracles of De. ifm I have confuted, in exploding and ridiculing Miracles as any Proof of Religion coming from God; that Prophecy is as little to be given in for Evidence of Doctrines t, that they are no more than fortunate, human Conjectures, a kind of Fortune-telling supported upon Trick and Cunning for selfish Views I

He agrees with them in disallowing any well attested Revelation, whilft he is somewhat fingular (unless you will range him with the Quakers) in requiring it to be Personal to every Manllwhilft every Reader will be ready to do justice, in affirming that this Author is not pecu liar, but of one Heart and the fame Soul with the rest of his Brethren, in laboriously repeating and repeating, printing and reprinting the same confuted Stuff, without taking the least Notice of any Answer. What sort of a Cause that is, and with how much Honour and Ingenuity the Defenders of it abound, must be left to the Publick. I may venture to commend, or rather blame him, for his Masterly Skill in the Sacinian Subtleties: but where is the Glory or Senfe of playing that hocus pocus Game over

Page 81, 92, 3, 28, 411. † Page 333. | Page 165, 289, 305

| Page 89.
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again ? For there will be the full Belief and a full Confidence in the reality of Motion, be the Ari guments never fo fubtle or feemingly convincing against it ; so, be there never so many Figures, Allegories, &c. lurking in the Fingers of the Socinians, to spirit away the Common Sense of so many, so very many plain Words, and Send tences, and Paragraphs of Revelation, which disagree with, and are not well-affected to their Scheme ; ftill there will be Common Sense, and Apprehension of Words left in great abundance to ftand ground, and not be baffled out of one's Senses by such refined Absurdities. I am afraid therefore, that whoever goes about to add to the Subclety of our Author's Head, will, at the fame time, take away a great deal from the Integrity of his Heart, which he should not thank any body for.

But so it is, I am sorry to obferve, for the fake of fo ingenious a Perfon, what can't escape general Observation, That much the greatest Part of this elaborate Work consists of, and swells itself up with those egregious Repetitions, baffled Attacts, stale, difsipated Objections ; and, I muft add further, tho the chief Merit of it appears to be of that fort, I can't do him the Pleasure of answering him in particular as to those Matters, for two good Reasons : because I have already pretty largely, and very lately, answered his Accomplices in the fame way of Thinking, and Reasoning ; and because a much greater Person than himself, the Publick, might juftly be displeased with the repetition of Arguments unanswer'd, and wholly declined by this famous Antagonist, tho' they enter into the very Heart of the Cause he espouses. However

I shall

I shall endeavour to gratify him with all that is needful, or can be thought proper, in this present Reply, by addressing myself to what new Strength, he may think, he has added to old Arguments, or the greater Light of seeming Truth, he supposeș, he has projected upon, and recommended his beloved Subject under: and this I shall do where-ever he advances any thing, which I judge does directly appertain unto, or immediately affect the Merits of the Cause in debate.

It is obvious to every cursory Reader, that he is Hand in Glove with the Two celebrated Authors I have answered, in making the Chriftian Revelation to be, neither more nor less than the Republication of the Law of Nature ; in maintaining, that Jesus Cbrist died only as a Martyr, Witness, or Example ; that the Polin tive instituted Parts of the Religion called Chris ftians, are sensless wretched Things, having not the least rational Use, Fitness, or Moral Tendency in them ; fit for nothing but to be exploded as Nonsense, and cashier'd as Priestcraft: And he is so closely link'd with them in his Affection to the Clergy, that he can't find Words bad enough for them. But as there happens to be some new Turn now and then in the Process of his Affertions, or something observably bright or smart in the Management of his Argument, or Elucidation of his Point, he might think himself neglected, if I did not likewise take some Notice of his Club or Share in the pious Design that has been so long in hand.

In consequence of profefling himself a Chri. Stian Deist, he declares, "I must therefore

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“ take Christianity, as to the Substance and “ doctrinal Parts of it, to be a Revival of the " Religion of Nature." He had declared for Jesus Cbrist before t, and through his Book owns him in no other Character but that of a Propbet, or what is necessarily included therein ; as he proclaims every where, that he died only as a Martyr, and Witness to Truch, Exa ample of Moral Righteousness, he particularly adds, “ That all that was done or suffered by “ him was necessary to bimself; and upon his

own Account.” I “ That the Sufferings and " Death of Christ, as a propitiatory Sacrifice for ço Sin, is not as the meritorious Cause, but as the " moral effective Means of our Salvation and " Recovery, &c."| This is his figurative allegorical Sacrifice, Propitiation, &c. and all other Sense is absurd Raving not Reasoning and elsewhere, speaking the Sense of such Chriftians as himself, " That the Death of Christ, “ as an Atonement or Propitiation in the pro

per Sense is absurd, impossible, and contrary ¢ to the Nature of God, to the Nature of “ Man, and to the necessary Reason, and Mo“ ral Fitness of Things." ** And frequently loads the commonly receiv'd Christian Scheme, as the Dregs of Judaism ++, Enthusiasm and Superstition. That the Chriftians (whom he therefore

every where brands by the Name of Judaizing Christians) learn'd'the Trick and Cheat of Propitiation, Atonement, Sacrifice, from the Jewish Priests, who learnt it from the Egyptians. To quote Passages relating to this last would be in Effect to cite half his Book.

* Page 392.

Page 228.

** Page 95.

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