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have done more to enlarge the knowledge of sacred criticism, than all the nations of Europe. In this respect, they are a century in advance of England and of every other nation.” P. 334. On page 421 he says, that in Germany " the doctrine of the Eternity of Future Punishment is almost UNIVERSALLY REJECTED. I have seen but one person in Germany who believed it, and but one other whose mind was wavering on this subject.”
Facts in relation to the History of Universalism.- From the time of the death of the apostle John, which happened about A. D. 100, to the year 150, the history of opinions entertained by Christians respecting the final destiny of the human race, is involved in much obscurity. But little is known except that the doctrine of the final happiness of all men was held by the different sects of Gnostics, viz., the Basilidians, the Carpocratians, and the Valentinians. And although these sects were regarded as heretics by the orthodox fathers, and although these fathers “ warmly and bitterly attacked their respective systems in general,” yet, “ it does not appear that they ever selected the particular tenet of the salvation of all souls as obnoxious."
In the year 140, or 150, a belief in Universalism was distinctly avowed in a work, which was the production of some Christian or Christians, called the “Sibylline Oracles.”
Of the orthodox fathers, who lived between 150 and 210, some believed in Universalism, while others held to the doctrine of endless misery. “This diversity of opinion, however, occasioned no divisions, no controversies nor contentions among them; and both sentiments existed together in the church without reproach."
From the year 230 to 553, Universalism was believed and advocated by a number of the most learned, pious and distinguished fathers that the church ever produced.
Tertullian, a presbyter of Carthage, in Africa, was the first Christian writer who asserted and maintained the doctrine that the misery of the wicked will be of equal duration with the happiness of the righteous. This doctrine he defended in a work published by him in the year 204.
Universalism was never condemned by any Christian writer, either orthodox or heretic, till the
394. “In the year 394 a quarrel broke out between the followers of the celebrated Origen and their opponents, in which some of the latter attacked, for the first time, the particular tenet of the ultimate
salvation of the Devil, but did not at first object to the final salvation of all men.
“In 399, some of the councils that were convened against the Origenists, condemned expressly the doctrine of the salvation of the Devil and his angels, though they passed by the belief of the salvation of all mankind without a censure.”
Universalism was not officially condemned by the church until the Fifth General Council, which was held at Constantinople in the year 553. See “ Ancient History of Universalism,” and “ Plain Guide to Universalism."
Notwithstanding this authoritative condemnation of Universalism, the doctrine still continued to be held and maintained in the church until the establishment of Popery.
From the time of the condemnation of Universalism by the Fifth General Council, the church gradually sunk into ignorance, superstition, and moral darkness, until at last spiritual despotism and tyranny reigned triumphant.
From the time of the breaking out of the Protestant Reformation to the present time, Universalism has been believed and advocated by some of the most distinguished divines, theologians and philosophers, of all the different prominent sects in Christendom.
The Manicheans, a very powerful and influential sect, which flourished from the year 265 even to the time of the Reformation, held the doctrine of Universalism.
During the reign of Popery, Universalism was held by the Albanenses, the Albigenses, the Waldenses, the Paulicians, and the Lollards. It is thought that these sects all descended from the Manicheans. Neither of them ever submitted to or acknowledged the authority of the Pope.
Universalists, as a distinct denomination, were known in England as early as 1770.
The first Universalist preacher in the United States was Dr. George De Benneville. He came to this country in 1741.
The first Universalist society in the United States was formed between the years 1771 and 1780.
The first Universalist paper was published in England in 1793.
The first Universalist paper in the United States was published at Boston, Mass., in 1802. The first weekly paper was commenced in 1819.
The General Convention of Universalists of the United States was formed in 1785.
List of distinguished Individuals who were Universalists. — Previous to the Reformation, Universalism was believed and advocated by the following individuals; many of them the most eminent of the Christian Fathers : Basilides, Carpocrates, Valentine, Clemens Alexandrinus, Origen, Alexander, bishop of Jerusalem, Ambrosius, Gregory Thaumaturgus, Titus, bishop of Bostra, Basil the Great, bishop of Cesarea, Gregory, bishop of Nyssa, Didymus, Jerome, Gregory, bishop of Nazienzus, Evagrius Ponticus, Diodorus, bishop of Tarsus, Theodore, bishop of Mopsuestia, John, bishop of Jerusalem, Victorinus, Nonnus, Leontius, Domitian, Theodorus Ascidas, Clement, Rainold, Walter Lollard. It may be proper
to remark that most of the above individuals were believers in future punishment, and that they freely applied the terms everlasting and eternal to punishment, not, however, to express its endless, but its indefinite duration.
Since the era of the Reformation, Universalism has been held by the following eminent persons, who have lived at different periods of time and in different countries.
In England, it has been advocated by Gerard Winstanly, William Everard, Rev. William Earbury, Rev. Richard Coppin, Samuel Richardson, Rev. Jeremy White, Dr. Henry More, Archbishop Tillotson, Dr. Thomas Burnet, William Whiston, Sir Isaac Newton, Rev. Dr. Samuel Clarke, Dr. George Cheyne, Chevalier Ramsay, Mrs. Jane Leadley, Rev. Richard Clarke, Rev. William Law, William Duncombe, Rev. Samuel Say, Soame Jenyns, Henry Brooke, Dr. Andrew Kippis, Dr. William Paley, Rev. Robert Robinson, Rev. Geo. Walker, Dr. John Coakley Lettsom, Dr. John Hey, Dr. David Hartley, Abraham Tucker, Rev. Thomas Broughton, Bishop Thomas Newton, Sir George Stonehouse, John Henderson, Dr. Nathan Drake, Dr. James Brown, Rev. William Matthews, Rev. Francis Leicester, Rev. Edward Holmes, Rev. Rochemont Barbauld, Mrs. Ann Letitia Barbauld, Rev. John Brown, Rev. Theophilus Lindsey, Rev. Dr. Joseph Priestley, Dr. John Jebb, Rev. John Simpson, Rev. Timothy Kenrick, Dr. John Prior Estlin, Dr. Lant Carpenter, Rev. Richard Wright, Rev. Henry Poole, Rev. Rokert Aspland, Rev. Dr. Thomas Belsham, Rev. John Grundy, Rev. RusBel Scott, Dr. Thomas Cogan, Rev. W. J. Fox, Rev. William Vidler
Nathaniel Scarlett, Rev. Mr. Creighton, Rev. James Rait, Rev. Henry Bell, and Rev. William Upjohn.
In Scotland, by Duncan Forbes, Rev. James Purves, Rev. Niel Douglass, Rev. William Worrall, Rev. James Edmands, Rev. Dr. Thomas Southwood Smith, and Rev. George Harris.
In Ireland, by Bishop George Rust.
In Germany, by John William Peterson, Boetius or Balduin, professors of Divinity, Paul Siegvolk, Mr. Marsay, Gruner, Eberhard, Steinhart, Fuller, Semler, Crellius, Fisher, Shetz, and Shepherd, and is now held by a majority of the clergy and laitý.
In Prussia, by Paul Jeremiah Bitaube and Rev. Herman Andrew Pistorius.
In France, by Rev. Thomas Cuppe, James Necker, Chais de Sourcesol, Dr. Geo. de Benneville, Durant, De la Chevrette, Dumoulin, L'Archer, &c.
In Switzerland, by Murault, Charles Bonnet, Rev. Ferdinand Oliver Petitpiere, Rev. John Gosper Lavater, and Carbo a Cortiaro.
In America, by Rev. Richard Clarke, Rev. Dr. Jonathan May, hew, Rev. John Murray, Rev. Elhanan Winchester, Dr. Redman, Dr. Benjamin Rush, Rev. Dr. Charles Chauncey, Rev. John Tyler, Gen. Greene, Dr. Benj. Franklin, Rev. Mr. Wright (a Moravian), Shippie Townsend, Rev. Mr. Duchee, Dr. Joseph Young, Dr. Wm. Pitt Smith, Rev. Dr. Joseph Huntington, Rev. Dan Foster, and Rev. Thomas Fessenden.
The following individuals are known to have doubted the doctrine of endless misery, and to have been favorable to Universalism : Fenelon, Daniel De Foe, Dr. Isaac Watts, Dr. Philip Doddridge, Simon Episcopius, John Le Clerc, Rev. C. L. de Villette, Archbishop Newcome, Dr. Edward Young, Dr. Samuel Johnson, Dr. James Macknight, and others. There are some very good reasons for believing that the celebrated John Wesley was a Universalist. 1. He was one of those who requested Dr. Stonehouse to write a work in defence of Universalism. 2. “A work in which Universalism was taught (Brooks' · Fool of Quality'), was republished under Mr. Wesley's supervision.” 3. He republished a work by Charles Bonnett, entitled “Conjectures concerning the nature of Future Happiness,” in which the same doctrine is inculcated. 4. The latter work "he introduced to the public with the following prefatory commendation :"
Dublin, April 7, 1787. “To the Reader: I am happy in communicating to men of sense in this Kingdom, and at a very low price, one of the most sensible tracts I ever saw.
JOHN WESLEY.” If the reader will examine the Ancient and Modern Histories of Universalism, and Stone's “Life of Winchester,” he will find the above facts established by quotations from the writings of the individuals named, and by authorities which are indisputable.
DIFFERENCE IN THE BELIEF OF PARTIALISTS
AND UNIVERSALISTS. All the various denominations of professing Christians may be classed under three heads : Calvinists, Arminians, and Universalists. The agreement and the difference in the religious opinions of these three classes on the most important doctrines of Christianity may be stated as follows:
There is one God. There is one Mediator be There is one Mediator be There is one Mediator between God and men, and tween God and men, and tween God and men, and that Mediator is the very and that Mediator is the very and that Mediator is “the MAN eternal God himself. eternal God himself.
The one Mediator gave himself a ransom for a part himself a ransom for all. himself a ransom for all. only of mankind.
All those for whom the A part only of those for All those for whom the Mediator died will be saved. whom the Mediator died will Mediator died will be saved.
be saved. God's purposes in the God's purposes in the God's purposes in the creation of the human race creation of the human race creation of the human race embraced the final holiness embraced the final holiness embraced the final holiness and happiness of a part, and and happiness of all man and happiness of all manthe endless misery of the kind.
God's purpose in refer God's purpose in refer God's purpose in refer. ence to the final destiny of ence to the final destiny of a ence to the final destiny of his creatures cannot be de- part of his creatures will be his creatures cannot be defeated. defeated.
feated. God has the power to God has not the power to
God has the power to make all his creatures holy make all his creatures holy make all his creatures holy and happy. and happy.
and happy. God wills the salvation of God wills the salvation of God wills the salvation of a part of his creatures, and all his creatures.
all his creatures. the damnation of the rest.
God's will in reference to God's will in reference to God's will in reference to the ultimate destiny of his the ultimate destiny of a the ultimate destiny of his creatures will be done.
part of his creatures will not creatures will be done.
be done. God can save all mankind, God would save all man God can save all mankind, but will not. kind, but cannot.
and will. The object of Christ's mis The object of Christ's mis The object of Christ's mis. sion to our world was to save sion to our world was to save sion to our world was to a part only of mankind from all mankind from endless save all mankind from their endless misery. misery.
sins. Christ will succeed in ac Christ will succeed in ac Christ will succeed in accomplishing the object of his complishing a part only of complishing the object of his mission.
the object of his mission. mission.