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IN WHICH THB SUBJECT OF MODERN UNIVERSALISM IS EXAMIXED; THE AR-
AND THE WORD OF GOD.
BY PHILEMON R. RUSSELL,
PUBLISHED BY A. R. BROWN.
This series of Letters was first published in the Christian Herald. They are now presented to the Christian Public, in the present form, in compliance with the request of the Rockingham Christian Conference. This little volume is designed to be an antidote for the diffusive poison of Modern Universalism. The author professes to be thoroughly acquainted with this whole system of error. The folly, absurdity and infidelity of Modern Universalism, the sophistry and outrageous perversions of the scriptures by which it is sustained and commended to the minds of the unstable and unthinking, are but poorly understood by those who have not been themselves ensnared in the dreadful delusion, or who have not carefully examined the works of its most popular authors. In both of these respects the author feels himself qualified for the work he has undertaken. He was once deluded with a species of Universalism. He has also carefully examined its standard authors; and he is confident that this little work is a sufficient answer to every Universalist book now before the public. The old cry of " Misrepresentation” will probably be raised; but this charge cannot be sustained. When a Universalist exposition is given and examined, the author is named, or his work definitely referred to. Universalist authors have been allowed to speak for themselves, as far and as explicitly as the limits of the work would permit. Their arguments have been considered and answered.
Fall River, 1842.
My Dear Sir:
I deeply regret to learn by yours of that you have embraced Universalism. I know what that ism is. I was once somewhat ensnared in its dreadful delusion, and can “speak what I know, and testify what I have seen ” concerning it. I have a multitude of reasons why I cannot be a Universalist; reasons which to my mind are invincible, some of which I will endeavor to spread before you. May I not hope that you will give them a careful reading, and ponder well your footsteps before you give yourself up to the delusive hope that you must go to heaven because there is no hell? I cannot adopt your views,
1. Because man is manifestly a moral agent, and therefore an accountable creature. The advocates of Modern Universalism, understanding that moral agency involves moral ac- * countability, have endeavored to destroy all sense of accountability by denying the moral agency of man. They, like the old fashioned Anti-nomians, are generally fatalists. They contend that man has no power to resist the divine will — that God is the author of all things, and that among these all things SIN holds a place. Now what is moral agency? It is the power of moral action, the power to deliberate in view of motives to reason-to choose and to act That man has such an agency is evident, (1) from the fact that God everywhere addresses him as a moral agent, gives him a moral law, blames him for its violation, commends him for obedience, promises and threatens him, rewards and punishes him. The whole of divine revelation, from Genesis to Revelation, every book, chapter and verse bear testimony to the moral agency of man, Were he a mere creature of necessity, a machine, propelled