« ElőzőTovább »
the perfect conviction of the querist, what doctrinal point is gained by this decision ? If Adam was at all acquainted with the properties of the circle, he must have been fully aware, as it is generated by the motion of a line round one of its ends, that all the lines from the centre to the circumference must be equal. Such is the case at the present day; and so will it remain as long as human minds exist to contemplate circles. The difference between “ HISTORY” and “ DOCTRINE,” with regard to its proofs, is perfectly distinct. The former never can reach higher than possibility and probability; while the latter affords a conviction, whose contrary is impossible.
The blue sphere in the centre of our Diagram has now fully performed its office, by representing the evervarying tablets on which are recorded the evanescent sensations that are constantly obtruding themselves on the senses. Thus it stands for a general representation of all “ HISTORY,” from the creation to the destruction of the world, whose characteristic is essentially marked by the things spoken of being of an extended form, and in a constant state of change, till the matter of which they are composed has lost all its tenacity, and assumed new forms -- the vak and the acorn. Can this state
ment of the case be at all impugned? Are not the feelings which have passed through the eye and the ear, and been confirmed by the touch, the proper elements of HISTORY, recording the action of matter upon matter; and is not this discourse, the WORD OF Man, communicated to man ? Thus much for mundane affairs ! The numerous yellow rays
- feeble emblem of ETERNITY -- which circumscribe the finite circle of TIME, will have also done their duty in symbolizing the abode of infinite spirits, and representing the depository of departed souls, as well as while these very souls are doomed to be members of both spheres. Here, also, exist all those permanent and pure principles, which are guides for our moral conduct, the most distinguished among which is the Moral LAW. Whosoever strictly follows the dictates of the moral law, which God has planted in the Reason of man, does the will of his Father who is in heaven; and, by this faith in the perfect truth of the “REVELATION" of his Son Jesus Christ, is not only made a partaker of God's spiritual kingdom, but has also secured his eternal salvation. Thus, in imitation of our great prototype, he may be said to have buried the man of sin, and is regenerated unto righteousness. This double nature of man is the only ground of possibility for the exercise of VIRTUE. For, without the inclinations on the one hand, and our moral duties on the other, there could be no contest, consequently no VICTORY. How, then, can Virtue, which is an affair of spirit with spirit, ever be looked for among the changeable phenomena of nature, where instinct alone holds absolute sway, defying all freedom ? — But is the soul an inhabitant of this restricted sphere? No! it revels in ETERNITY, enjoying the unlimited purity of its nature with the most perfect freedom. So that man, armed with the invincible panoply of Reason, may defy the whole world of SENSE, even in single combat. Here is proof, abundant and demonstrative proof, of the purity and divinity of the DOCTRINE contained in the “ Sacred Volume" — the royos, as Christ calls himself, when teaching the WILL OF HIS FATHER, who is in heaven for our souls already form part of that kingdom of spirits which are to inhabit the world to come thus, through Christ are we assured of the resurrection and the life everlasting. How, then, dare man presume to judge the motives of his fellow-man, when he perceives by this display that they are merely the spiritual influence of spirit acting upon spirit, and are not cognizable by SENSE, but are only affairs of man with his Maker! Can this spiritual communion be better designated, or, can any thing more appropriately constitute what is understood by DOCTRINE, than this converse of spirit with spirit ? For Christ says “the time will come, and is even now, when true worshippers shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth.” Is not this the WORD of God! Thus have we cleared up spiritual essences.
I hope it will appear that I have sufficiently atoned for the fault of conciseness, with which the first Edition of this work is very properly charged. Should, however, this not be the case, I would willingly enter into the minutest elements on which the argument is founded, and undertake to bring them home to the conviction of any one endowed with REASON. The fault just adverted to may be attributable to my very intimate acquaintance with the “System,” which furnishes the principle of the “DIVARICATION ” of the Scriptures into “DocTRINE and HISTORY,” or, in other words, into REASON and Sense - a System, whose least claim to merit is that of finally reconciling all religious animosities; producing unanimity and concord among all religious sects; and, lastly, establishing the “ REVELATION” of Jesus Christ as the only true “ Divine Revelation”in consequence of its being in accordance with Reason, and proving that all other religions in the world must be spurious. But the higher claims of this Science are such as make man intimately acquainted with himself, so that he may try every motive, and compare it with the purity of the Moral Law; and that there shall not exist a sentiment in the inmost recess of his soul but what may be brought to the bar of CONSCIENCE,
Forty years' intercourse with this “ Science” has produced such a perfect conviction of the truth and necessity of this division of the “ Scriptures,” that I, no doubt, fancied a mere hint would be sufficient to produce the same conviction in others. While enlightenment is an object of importance, we may, indeed, regret that half a century should have rolled on, and the very Science which eradicates or suppresses all the bad passions, annihilates superstition, and crushes atheism, should be so little known in a country famed for its progress in intellectual advancement. It seems as if a spell were set, to prevent the introduction of