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I supposed that the bare exhibi- in which all professed Christians tion of the manner in which Unita- agree. Professed friends of truth rians speak on these subjects, would have thought it improper for young be sufficient to bring to the nten preparing for the ministry to mind of every reader a multitude make the great doctrines of the biof facts to confirm my assertion. ble the subject of enquiry and And I did hope, that some, at investigation. Professed friends least, of those who are ignorantly of truth have thought it the highest doing the work of the enemy, would proof of excellence in a minister, see their own likeness, and make a that he pleases all classes, and so pause. But there is, probably, preaches as to prevent among his Little reason to hope for any great people all disputes on religious change in this respect. The dan subjects. An opinion has been ger will not be generally seen, till extensively embraced, that the exit is too late. Men will continue hibition of the great doctrines of to take counsel of their feelings the gospel is especially injurious to more than of their judgment.- revivals of religion, and adapted They will continue to desire our to quench the spirit of prayer; ministers to pursue the same course and that it is highly imprudent to which Mr. Channing has marked preach them in the time of a reout for himself and his brethren.-vival. And some have drawn the They will continue to extol, as the legitimate conclusion from this, wisest and best men, those who that these doctrines must never be make the nearest approach to Ari- preached at all; not in the tiine of ans and Socinians. They will con- à revival, lest it should grieve tinue to depreciate those who are away the Spirit; and not in a time disposed to contend for the faith of stupidity, lest it should make once delivered to the saints.”- people more stupid, and always They will continue to represent preventa revival. Professed friends the great doctrines of the bible as of truth have embraced the opinion, of no practical use, and the preach- that what the scriptures teach on ing of them as injurious. They many doctrinal points, is entirely will continue to represent ortho- unintelligible to common minds, doxy and practical religion as hav- and adapted to perplex and dising no connexion with each other, tress them; and that those parts of and endeavour to discourage all the bible should be passed over in doctrinal enquiry.
silence. Many professed friends If every reader is not acquaint- of truth are strongly tinctured ed with facts in the circle of his with the Socinian notions of charity own acquaintance, which furnish and liberality, and think error in abundant cause of alarm, his ex- | matters of faith is no sin. Marry perience has been different from think, that if a people will not bear mine. I have known professed certain truths, that is a sufficient friends of truth, who have enter- reason why they should not be extained and propagated sentiments hibited. and maxims in perfect harmony Now, it is plain, that such senwith those taken from Mr. Chan- timents as these are in perfect tring's letter. Professed friends accordance with the views of Mr. of truth have thought it improper Channing. And that when they for ministers of the gospel to preach shall universally prevail, nothing
on any controverted points, and will remain to be done, but for i have wished them to confine them- Unitarians to come and take pos
selves to those practical subjects session of the ground which is thus prepared and voluntarily yielded ion-called, indeed, in this eto them.
lightened age, rational ChristianI obseryed that the late Dr. | ity? If in your preaching, these Worcester, well known as Secre- doctrines are kept out of sight, or tary to the American Board for treated only in a manner so geneForeign Missions, answered Mr. ral, so vague, so ambiguous, as not Channing. I wish to call the directly and manifestly to clash attention of my readers, and es- with any of the various and oppopecially of those who have been site opinions, held by professed inclined in any measure, to em- Christians respecting their; if you brace such views as Mr. Channing dwell“ perpetually on other expresses, to soine remarks in Dr. topics; is it then strange that your Worcester's letter to that gentle people and others are left in utter
The following are in reply uncertainty, as to what you believe to the account which Mr. Channing on these momentous points, and had given of the manner in which that you are considered as wanting himself and his brethren fulfil their in openness and clearness, and as ministry:
practising reserve and concealment? “The sum of this representation “You say, “ in thus avoiding is——that you and your brethren controversy, we have thought that studiously refrain from encounter- we deserved not reproach, but ing the opinions of any of the vari- some degree of praise for our selfous denominations of Christians denial.” For myself, I had unwho differ from you; and are ac- derstood from the scriptures, that customed “to urge perpetually it required Christian self-denial, those truths and precepts,” which not to shrink from an open avowal to be sure you call great, of our faith in the doctrines of the 6 about which there is little con- gospel, and from “ bolding forth tention.” But what are those the faithful word” in the face of great truths and precepts, about opposition; but cordially to emwhich there is little contention, brace them, openly to confess and which you perpetually urge them, and meekly and charitably, Certainly not any of the primary, yet firmly and courageously to not any of the peculiar doc- contend” for them. And you trines or institutions of the gos- will pardon me, Sir, if I do not pel: for not one of these can be yet see that much “ praise” is due named, about which there has not for your 66 self-denial.” You tell always been, about which there is us explicitly, that “to believe
• not still great contention. These vith Mr. Belsham is no crime. "* doctrines, then, according to your In your sermon on Infidelity, you own representation, you and your
6 for these and other liberal brethren carefully refrain reasons, I am unwilling to believe, from bringing into discussion be- that infidelity has no source but fore your hearers: or, if
you men-depravity of heart, and that it can tion them at all, yet only in such never be traced to causes which a manner as not to come into con may ubsolve it from guilt." It flict or collision with any who dif- must be admitted, indeed, that you fer from you on these great and do not regard with quite equal cardinal points.
kindness, those who believe in Cal“ But, Sir, set these doctrines aside, and what is then left of the
* Mr. Belsham is one of the lowest
Unitarians, and scarcely differs at all from gospel of Jesus Christ? What is
a sober Deist, holding that Christ was a there left but mere natural relig
mere tallible, peccable, ignorant man.
vinism; as is manifest from some believeth not shall be damned!" very strong expressions of antipa- | What is St. Paul's meaning, when thy, and from your representation, he says, “ Because they received than which, I am grieved to say, I not the love of the trath, that they have seldom if ever seen a more might be saved-God shall send * distorted” and injurious one, of them strong delusion to believe a their sentiments. Is it, however, lie; that they all might be damned
a crime to believe in Calvinism? | who believed not the truth, but had -- when, in your estimation it is none pleasure in unrighteousness?” And
to believe in the lowest Unitarian- St. Peter's, when he says, “ There ism, and may be none to be an were false prophets also among
the Infidel. I presume that, notwith people, even as there shall be false standing the vehemence of your teachers among you, who privily antipathy, you will hardly say it shall bring in damnable heresies, is. But if, in your esitmation, even denying the Lord that bought error of all kinds is innocent, then them, and bring upon themselves where is your "self-denial” in swift destruction." If this lanrefraining froin assailing it, and guage sounds harsh and unfashwhere your claim to “ praise" for ionable, I trust, Sir, you will have "avoiding controversy
the goodness not to impute the ** There is still another point of fault to me; and that you will not view, and that a very serious one, on account of any unpleasantness, in which your " self-denial” and in the language, refuse to give atFour clain to “praise,” should tention to the momentous sentinot fail to be considered. If, in- ment contained in it. deed to believe in error, is “ no “ Did the apostles, then, studcrime," then to believe in the iously “ avoid controversy” Did
“ ? truth is no virtue. But, Sir, is it they seldom or never refer to any 50 represented in the word of God? | different sentiments, embraced by Did Jesus Christ and his apostles other professed “Christians?" conduct their ministry, and enjoin Nevero“ attempt to refute” error? it upon others to conduct theirs, Never assail any • system whicle in the manner in which, as you they did not believe?" or any represent, you and your liberal" denomination that differed from brethren conduct yours?
them?” Did they refrain from "Jesus Christ says, “ This is į preaching high and mysterious docthe condemnation, that light is trines, lest they should “ perples, come into the world, and men have and needlessly perplex, a common loved darkness rather than light, congregation, consisting of all abecause their deeds are evil. ges, capacities, degrees of improveFor every one that doeth evil hat- ment, and conditions in society?" eth the light, and will not come to Did they, “in compliance with a the light, lest his deeds should be general system” of conduct adoptreproved.” Is not truth light, and ed by them, cautiously "exclude" error darkness? Does then the great from their preaching all controTeacher from heaven here repre- verted points, give up as unimporSert a belief in error to be no tant and unprofitable every, doccrimei-abelief in the truth to be no trine which any individuals, or virtue? What is his meaning, when, bodies of professed Christians had in his commission to his apostles ventured to deny or oppose, and and ministers, he says, “He that “ persuade themselves that the believeth” (in the truth, undoubt. best method of promoting the holiedly) “ shall be saved; he that I ness and salvation of mankind”
was, “ to urge on them perpetual- we have preached unto you, lo ly those truths and precepts about him be accursed!” which there was little contention?" “ Though the apostles were in Had they done so, possibly they vested with an extraordinary author might not have been made the ity, yet you will certainly admi offscouring of all things,” and been that in their love and zeal for th 6. exposed to deaths oft;"—but truth, and (due allowance bein have enjoyed singular prosper- made for change of circumstances ity,” “ found themselves respected in the manner of performing thei by all classes of society,” and been ministry, they are examples for a - distinguished by the eminent,” the ministers of Christ. If the and by those whom the world you and your liberal brethren hav would call “ the enlightened chosen to adopt “a general sys and the good.” But did they tem" of conduct in the ministry, al not act upon an entirely opposite together different from theirs, w “ system?" Did they not preach, must entreat you not to think i -66 with much contention,” a doc- strange, if there are some who can trine which was 66 to the Jews a not accord to you all the praise,' stumbling block, and to the Greeks which you “have thought that you foolishness"--a doctrine which was deserved.” And notwithstanding
”-a “ every where spoken against?" the assurance and the pathos, with Were not their epistles all of them which you make your appeal to controversial, in a greater or less your people, you must not expect degree, and some of them almost that the minds of all will be entireentirely? Did they not zealously ly relieved from the painful apprecontend for sentiments which were hension, that both you and your denied and opposed—and the more people may be under some decepzealously, in proportion as the op- tion; or from the distressing position was more powerful and doubt, whether, at the appearing of determined ? Did they not earnest- the Lord Jesus, you will be able in ly denounce' false doctrines and his presence te say to them, 6 We false teachers? warn the churches take you to record this day, that and all men against every preva- we are pure from the blood of all lent error? and with the utmost men; for we have not shunned to desolemnity say, “If we, or an an- clare unto you all the counsel of gel from Heaven preach any other God."
. gospel unto you, than that which [Remainder of this No. in our next.]
SWEDENBORGIANISM. en, it is of the utmost importance MR. EDITOR,
that it be spread; if it be the work As there are now at least a doz- of man, it ought to be discouraged. en societies of Swedenborgians in That a person of talents may now our country, and as great exertions and then profess to believe it, is are making to propagate their te. no argument in its favour. Every nets, I have thought it desirable system of religion has been upheld. that the public should have a clear more or less by talents. How men
a view of this system of religion, of learning and sound judgment in before they are called upon to em- other respects, can pretend to bebrace it. This system occupies no lieve in the greatest absurdities middle ground. If it be from heav- that were ever invented, I pretend
not to explain. That no system impetaous and headstrong in his is so absurd as to want followers, feelings, ardent in his pursuits, is a fact, which I leave to be ac- and probably honest in his profescounted for by others. So long as
sions. His diligence was aston- the heart governs the understand - ishing. Besides many works coning,” talents and learning are no nected with the sciences, he has shield against error. Great and left more than 30 octavo volumes, powerful minds, like the most har- besides many of a smaller size, all dened and polished steel, are liable of which are filled with revelations to be sullied and tarnished. I or explanations of that system of propose to give your readers as
religion, of which he was the founclear and candid a view of this der. All these were written after * new dispensation,” as can be he was 54 years of age. To the drawn from the works of its foun- contents of these works, the readder, pledging myself to assert er is soon to be introduced. Swenothing for which I cannot show denborg died at London in 1772, authority.*
aged 84. During his life, his folEmmanuel Swedenborg, whose lowers were very few. His works writings I am now about to exam- were published at his own expense, ine, was born at Stockholm, in and little noticed. It is here to 1689. We know little respecting be observed, that both he and his his childhood and youth, except followers claim that all his writings that he appears to have been well are “inspired by God;" that “he educated by his father, who was a is the new star in the Northern bishop in the Lutheran church at hemisphere, to guide and comfort Westrogothia. At the age of 21,
of 21, the bewildered traveller on his he travelled over the greater part way to Bethlehem,” and that his of the continent of Europe, at which “ New dispensation is the last and time he seems to have faithfully most magnificent of all.” studied human nature. At 27, he Before attempting to analyze was appointed Assessor of a Me- the system of Swedenborg, I shall tallic college, by Charles XII. permit him to give his own acKing of Sweden, and received the count of his first vision, which took title of Baron three years after place in 1743.
I dined very In his 45th year, he published his late at my lodgings at London, and "Regnum Minerale, in three folio ate with great appetite, till at the volumes, and soon after, treatises close of my repast, I perceived a on Tides and Planets. He was a kind of mist about my eyes, and man of great learning for his day, the floor of my chamber was covand possessed natural talents of ered with hideous reptiles. They the highest order. Before publish- soon disappeared, and the darkness ing his system of religion, he was was dissipated, and I saw clearly extensively known in Europe, and in the midst of a brilliant light, a had gained an enviable reputation. man seated in the corner of the He possessed a vigorous mind, a chamber, who said to me in a terbold and daring imagination, was rible voice, Eat not so much. At
those words my sight became ob• The principal authorities consulted scured; afterwards it became clear on this subject, are Arcana Cælestia, 12 yols
. — True Christian Religion, 2 vols.-- } by degrees, and I found myself Heaven and Hell --Hindmarsh-North alone. The night following, the Amer. Review--Remarks upon the writ. same man, radiant with light, apings of Swedenborg--Buck--New Jeru. peared to me and said, I am salem Miss. &c.
God, the Lord, Creator and Re