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your own opinion proposed to me fome years ago. “ Sir, how is it, that as soon as a man comes to the knowledge of the truth, it spoils his temper" That it does so, I had observed over and over, as well as Mr. J. had. But how can we account for it? Has the truth (lo Mr. J. terined what many love to term the doctrine of free grece) à natural tendency to spoil the temper? To inspire pride, haughtiness
, superciliousness? To make a man wifer in his own eyes, tban fever men that can render a reason? Does it naturally turn a man into a Cynic, a bear, a Toplady? Does it at once fet him free from all the restraints of good-nature, decency, and good-manners? Cannot a man hold distinguishing grace, as it is called, but he muft diftin. guish himself for pastion, fournefs, bitterness? Must a man, as foon as he looks upon himself to be an absolute favourite of heaven, look upon all that oppose him as Diabolonians, as predestinated dogs of hell? Truly, the melancholy instance now before us, would almoft induce us to think so. For who was of a more amiable temper than Mr. Hill, a few years ago? When I first conversed with him in London, I thought I had seldom seen a man of fortune, who appeared to be of a more humble, modest, gentle, friendly disposition. And yet this fame Mr. H. when he has once been grounded in the knowledge of the truth, is of a temper as totally different from this, as
light is from darkness! He is now haughty, supercilious, disdain. ing his opponents, as unworthy to be set with the dogs of his flock ! He is violent, impetuous, bitter of spirit! In a word, the author of the Review!
O Sir, what a commendation is this of your doctrine : Look at Mr. H. the Arminian! The loving, amiable, generous, friendly man. Look at Mr. H. the Calvinift! Is it the same person? This spiteful, morose, touchy man? Alas, what has the knowledge of the truth done? What a deplorable change has it made ?"
It is very true, that few of our modern Saints * seem to be aware what manner of spirit they are of. Art. 14. Further Remarks upon Dr. Campbell's late Synodical
Sermon : To which are prefixed (by way of Introduction) fome Obfervations on a former Synodical Sermon by the same Author : Intersperfed with Reflections on the present melancholy State of Christianity, the Christian Ministry, &c. as well in Scotland as in England, together with Notes for Illustration, and a Letter from a Minister in the South-Country to his friend (giving an Account of his Conversion, and consequent Change in his Preaching after he had been some Years ftanding in the Miniftry) annexed as an Exemplification of the Whole. 12mo. 9d. Aberdeen printed, and sold for the Benefit of the sober and induftrioes Poor. 1772.
So long a title-page will lead our Readers to suspect that this is no elegant or very accurate composition. The Author himself acknowledges, 'that in point of tyle, he (or rather we, for he commonly speaks of himfelf in the plural number) has been careless and negligent: he apologizes for it by quoting two lines from Pope,
* So Mr. H. ftyles himself, in his Review,
-Plain truth, dear Doctor, needs no flowers of speech,
So take it in the very words of Creech. However, plaihe truth may be agreeably dressed ; and if it was requisite to publish at all, it might not have been amiss for the good man to have paid a little more attention to this circumstance, in his present performance. He is solicitous that the reader should obferve, that though this pamphlet is announced to the world under the title of Further Remarks, &c. it does not come from the same hand with those ftri&ures upon the sermon in question, which appeared foon after its publication both at London and at Edinburgh. Those remarkers (in this writer's opinion) overlooked pairages of much greater importance than what they excepted againit; and which are, therefore, here animadverted upon.
We had apprehended that Dr. Campbell's sermon was really a valuable performance ; but this well-meaning author charges it with a capital defect, viz. the want of orthodoxy and the having too great a regard to philosophy, falsely so called. Among other remarks, we are told, it is seen in our country, in the present titne, wherein there is so much, that (it is thought by all the orthodox) there never was more morality preached, and we think never better preached; that there was never less of it seen in the lives of ministers and people ; and that (this degeneracy and depravity in the christian faith and manners having extended itself at last to North-Britain) even the church of Scotland and her diffenters (that used formerly to be remarked both for orthodoxy and holiness) is in almost as lamentable a condition now as the church of England and her's have been long in.'
It is probable that we may be hardly deemed properly qualiaed to pass a judgment upon this work, fince we are told, although every one may think himself a sufficient judge both of the Dri's fermons and our remarks on them, yet but few are competent judges of the one or of the other, even none but the spiritually enlightened and true christians:-The more fpiritual therefore our remarks are, or the nearer they happen to be to the truths of scripture, the more they will be condemned, or so much the fewer comparatively will approve of them : but no matter for that, if but one foul is savingly benefitted by them.'
Although the above specimens will lead our Readers to conclude, - that this is the production of an enthusiast, his work, ill-written as it is, may contain some truths, and his design we believe to be good ; but how can we applaud his charity, or even allow him to possess that degree of it which becomes any christian, when we see him confine all real goodness to a few persons who embrace certain particular tenets, and who alone, he tells us, are capable judges of religious truth
It may be right to add, that he confiders moderate Calvinists and pure Arminians, as he terms them, as coinciding in their fentiments.
He rather pleads for abolishing the subscripton to the 39 articles ; - and thinks that all good men, or, in his own phrase, the children of God, will agree with him herein : and he seems to reject the notions of particular election and reprobation,
Art. 15. The Works of Jacob Behmen, the Teutonic Theolo
pher. Vol. III. Containing, I. The Mysterium Magnum ; or an Explanation of the first Book of Moses, called Genefis : io three Parts.' II. Four Tables of Divine Revelation. With Figures illutirating his Principles, left by the Rev. William Law, M. A. 4to. il. 5s. bound. Robinson. 1772.
Who has not heard of Jacob Behmen's Divine Philosophy, and Wonderful Mysticilin,-surpafling all comprehension merely human, and, perhaps, furpafling all human patience, too ; except the patience of the late William Law, his zealous and laborious editor ;the late John Hutchinson, Esq; or the late John Dove, taylo: ; or the late Baron Swedenborg.
If, however, there are any of our Readers who are ignorant of the nature and importance of Jacob's performances, let them attend to what William Law himself faith of them, in the preface to chis third volume.
• Infinite are the mysteries mentioned in the Scriptures concerning God, Angels, Men, the World, Eternity, Time, the Creation, Fall, Sin, Corruption, the Curse, Mifery, Death, Judgment, Hell, Devils, Damnation :--Christ, Redemption, Salvation, Free-Grace, Free-Will, Resurrection, Paradise : The Isoly Ghost, Sanctificarion, Reititution, Blessedness, Eternal Life and Glory. The certain meaning of the words of scripture is the jewel locked up in them, r.ot now attainable from the Apostles by conversation with them. 'l herefore now we should apply ourselves to the things they 1poke of, which are to be enquired after in the mind, and the knowledge of them to be received from God by prayer, who will open the understanding, For there is a spirit in mar, and the inspiratica of the silmighty gives underjianding *, as it did TO THIS AUTHOR t, who BY TIE COMELAND OF THE HOLY SPIRIT t, .wrote his deep knowLage giz'in to himn of God, and has therein pointed out the way to us wiccin we may understand what iu us is Divine, and what Naturai ; the New Man and the Old; which is the aim and scope of the whole Bible: these New things and Old are those that the Scrive leurred in the kingdom of Heaven brings out of his treasury; neither can any knowlege he wanting to him who has Christ in him. For in Chriji are hid all the Treasures of Wisdom and Knowlege.
Reader! is thou still witheit to form an idea of the deep knowlege which the Spirit is thus said to have infused into Jacob, take it fium Jacob's own words ; which contain his explication of the My. ery of the Trinity :
- This thiecfoid Spirit is one only efence ; and yet it is no effent, but the eternal understanding, an original of the fomething; and vet it is the eternal Hiddennefs, (or myitical Mydery, as he farther explains it, in the marging as the understanding of man is not confined in time and place, but it is its own comprehension and feat; and the egress of the Spirit is the eternal original Contemplation, viz.
• Job xxxii. 8.
++ The words which we have printed in capitals, for our Reader's er ecial .notice, are not 10 printed in the book; but, in the 11a'lus, We have eactly followed the author,
& Labet of the Spirit.”-- Reader, can't thou comprehend this? if not, thou wilt perhaps join with us in lainenting that what was fo clearly revealed to Jacob Behmen thould still remain as unfathomable as ever, to thee, and to us, mere mortal, unenlightened Readers and Reviewers as we are !
We must now take our leave of this sublimely fpiritualized dealer in Essences which are no Effence, and in mystically mysterious Originals of something ; which we shall do by acquainting our Readers, that an advertisement is prefixed to this volume, informning us, that'the publication of it has been retarded by several occurrences ;' but that
the remaining parts of his [ Jacob Behmen's) writings are proposed to be comprized in two volumes, and published as soon as they shall be fitted for it.'
As to the engraved · fgures, illustrating his principles,' which are prefixed to this .voluine, we can only say, that had the defigner of them lived in those pious times when Galileo, for his ingenuity, was put into the Inquisition, he had certainly been burnt for a Sorcerer. Of these, however, there is an Explanation given, by Mr. Law: which is printed at the end of the volume, and which may be useful to those who can understand it. Art. 16. The Excellency of the Knowledge of 1.415 Christ. By the Rev. John Liborius Zimmerman Translated by Mores Browne. 12mo. 3 s. Dilly.
The friends of human reason, and well-wishers to common sense, will not hold themselves to be much indebted to Mr. Browne, for the trouble he has taken to import this heavy lump of German enthufiasm into our country, which is already over-itock'd with the fame kind of commodity, of its native growth. Art. 17. The Scriptuie Doctrine of Sin and Grace considered, in
twenty five plain and practical discourfes on the whole 7th Chapter of the Epiitle to the Romans. B; John Stafford. 8vo.
6 s. Buckland. 1772.
There are many people among Jack's followers, and fome among Peter's, who will admire these Discourses, and edify by the perusal of them ; 'while the disciples of MARTYN and REASON will pay very little attention to any ihing that Mr. Stafford can fay to them about ind willing in, and the spiritual warfare, &c. &c. Yet there phrases were once in high eftimation ; as the writings of Gouge, and Keach, and Bunyan will teltify. Art. 18. A calm and plain Ansiver to the Enquiry, why are you a
Difenier from the Church of England ? containing fome Remarks on its Doctrine, Spirit, Constrution, and some of its Offices and Forms of Devotion. By the Author of the Diflenting Gentleman's Letters to White. Being a summary View of the Arguments contained in those Let:ers. Svo. I S. Buckland, &c. 1772.
This production comes from one of the ableit Writers among the Dissenters, and one who hath long distinguished himself as a zealous champion in the cause of Nonconformity. With regard to the present enquiry, the least that can be said of it is, that it points out, with great acuteness and vivacity, the supposed deficiencies and errours in the doctrines, spirit, constitution, and devotional forms and elices of the church of England. As this work is, for the most
E e 3
part, an abridgment of a former treatise, a particular account of it will not here be expected. We shall, therefore, lay one specimen of it only before our Readers, which we have selected, because it relates to the enlargement of the toleration act; a subject that has lately been much discussed, and which will probably be kept in agitation, during the course of the ensuing wipter.
• It is to me, Sir, I assure you, says our Author, no agreeable task to point out these blemishes in a church which bears so high a rank amongst those called the reformed; but as the cause of Christianity is, I am verily persuaded, exceedingly hurt by them, and as a general reformation of those which are still enslaved by the tyranny of Rome, is, we hope in God, not far off, how greatly is it to be wilhed that the church of England should be rendered as free as posible from every defcet, and be establihed upon as pure and as catholic a plan as human wisdom and piety are able to effect, that it may be set up as a kind of standard to t e nations around, a pattern to copy after in the change they will hereafter make in their ecclefiaftical affairs !
• But, in abatement of the severity of these canons and law's, perhaps you will observe, that they are all, as to us of the present age, mere lifeless forms, an unmeaning and dead letter, since we feel nothing of their rigour, but write aud speak as freely upon these cob je&ts, without any moleftation from them, as if no such laws had ever been made.
I answer, this favour we owe not to the SPIRIT of the church, as an ecclesiastical constitution, but (through the mercy of God) te ibe SPIRIT of the Times, to the equity, the moderation, and good policy of the state * These unrighteous laws and canons of the church are still in full force, though by the wisdom of government their malignant power is restrained. They are till held as a tremendous rod over all the oppugners of the church rites, who every moment lie at mercy. Though the act of toleration hath freed us from the oppreffion of those penal laws which relate to mere nonconformity to the established mode of worship, yet it has left others, very severe ones, in full power to distress us, should the administration of these kingdoms ever fall into tyrannical hands, which God forbid.
• Though we are sincerely thankful to the favour of heaven, and the justice of our governors, for the blessings enjoyed fince passing the act of toleration, yet it is far from being (as it has generally been called) an equitable one.
• It by no means restores to us that liberty, and those rites, which both as men and as Christians we can juftly claim: it prescribes sach conditions of our exercising those rights as no civil government, we humbly apprehend, can equitably prescribe ; for even by this act an authority is still claimed over the faith of those who stand in no manner of ecclesiastical relation to the church. Our dissenting mi
I The act of toleration (says the learned Author of the alliance betwixt the church and state) happened not to be the good work of ibe church, begun in the conviction of truth, and carried on upon
the principles of charity, but was rather owing to the vigilance of ibe Srate, wisely provident for the support of civil liberty. Poftfeript ix answer to Lord Boling broke,