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what is that to thee? follow thou me'.' If we only substitute those, who are without the pale of Christ's mystical body, and who have never heard whether there be any Saviour of the human race, for the beloved disciple, respecting whom St Peter put the question, and ask, 'Lord, what shall the heathen do? 'what shall finally be their lot?' the answer is equally explicit—'What is that to you? if I will, ⚫ that they tarry in their present state, till I come again to judgement, what is that to you? follow

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Nay, if all other solutions should fail, there is one solution, in which we may with safety rest, and with which, in modesty, we ought to be satisfied. Shall not the judge of all the earth do right?' exclaimed the faithful Abraham, in a like distressful case. That there is no salvation promised to any human being, except in and through the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, is the express declaration of Scripture. Nor have we any other creed. Indeed it is that brief summary, which the sound christian never can depart from believing in his heart, and from openly professing with his mouth. But how the efficacious virtue of that saving name may be applied, is part or God's unsearchable riches; with which, not being revealed, we have no immediate concern; by our minutest scrutiny, we never

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1 St John xix. 21, 22.

discover it, unless we had the means of viewing the incalculable number of effects produced by the great mystery of godliness-God manifest in the flesh,' towards the satisfying of distributive justice, and the displaying of undeserved mercy. And therefore, in answer to the bullying challenge of the liberal-minded (but at heart free-thinking) tribe, dare any one take upon him to damn all the moral ' and virtuous men, who have either never heard of the name of Jesus; or whose faith was not strictly according to the system commonly reputed • orthodox ?' I may, and I do, with equal decency and propriety, require, in terms of a similar challenge, dare any man, who acknowledges the authenti

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city of Scripture, take upon him to pronounce such ⚫ moral and virtuous men, as are here described, to be safe, and secure of eternal life, without the name ' of Jesus?'

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The other point, closely connected as it is with the above, is equally conclusive; for, if one faith be thus generally necessary to salvation, so is one baptism;' insomuch, that whoever does, whether collectively or individually, alter the primitive faith, on the one hand, or break off from the primitive institution of the christian priesthood, that is, from · the apostolical constitution of the one catholic church, the other hand, that man does of a truth renounce the sure and certain title to the salvation promised to that faith, and to be claimed only in that holy communion and fellowship,

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I am abundantly sensible that, in the present posture of christianity, to enter into a more enlarged discussion of this matter, would be deemed, to say the least, a most invidious conduct; such as would of necessity bring upon me the imputation of UNCHURCHING a valuable portion of the reformed professors of christianity abroad; who, having recovered the primitive faith, lament the unavoidable misfortune' (according to their own language) of their not being able to recover, to the full extent of their wishes, the primitive government of the christian church.

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As my present purpose is not to attack, but to de fend; not to combat the principles of others, but to illustrate those of the venerable branch of the church catholic existing in this country, and thus to edify the clerical candidate, I shall not examine the merits of the above imputation, or of the premises whose offspring it is. I shall only, in sympathy to the objects of it, wish and pray that their • unavoidable misfortune' may be sustained at the judgment-day, and that their purity of faith, and sincerity of intention, may compensate for the involuntary breach of that which the catholic church, in the day of its acknowledged adherence to the primitive standard, did believe to be of positive and perpetual institution; and which, I hope and trust the catholic church, to this hour, treats with the same pious veneration.

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With respect however to things at home, no such plea is advanced, and therefore no such sympathy is, on catholic principles, admissible. In Scotland the breach was not involuntary, it was a matter of choice, and the continuance of it exists, and is occasioned by any other cause than that of ' unavoidable necessity. In this country the primitive government of the church by Bishops, who, in a due and regular succession, had been both canonically and legally appointed to bear rule, was thrown aside; at first, under the pretext of its 'be

ing repugnant to the word of God,' (a repugnancy which the foreign reformers never did discover), and afterwards, under the artful disguise, that it was 'grievous to the people, and contrary to their in'clinations.' This it was, although neither true in fact, nor conclusive in argument, which did the business, and obtained for what is termed Presbytery its present legal establishment. To debate therefore that important article of our faith, which involves the right government of the christian church with our own countrymen, I judge to be completely lawful,' was it at present expedient. But by reason of the many able vindications of primitive truth and order, to which the theological student has access, in the writings of both Scottish and English authors of acknowledged learning, I

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I See Hooker's Ecclesiastical Polity. Archbishop Potter on Church Government. Brokesby's History of the Primitive Church, &c. Brett's

forbear to stir up controversy unnecessarily; especially as modern presbyterians seem to have abandoned the old, though most unjustifiable cause of clamour against episcopacy, viz. that it is contra

ry to the word of God;' and are now eager to represent the government of the church, as noway essential or fixed, being both discretionary, and subject to alteration, in conformity with the changes and chances of human life, the variations of times, places, and circumstances; or, in still plainer language, in conformity with the ever-varying humour and fancy of the enthusiast, on the one hand, and of the nominal christian, on the other.

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Upon this new basis of dissent, the true method of appeal to antiquity, universality, and consent,' as decisive in matters of fact, is made to give place to the plausible and popular substitute of charity, of candour, and LIBERAL SENTIMENT, that upstart and usurping phantom, at whose dread nod' every thing, which betrays but the appearance of conscience towards God,' is rendered ineffectual to every purpose of religious edification and improvement. In concluding this letter, I shall however in so far comply with the prevailing system of the age, as simply to refer the matter, which it is found to contain, to that spirit of candour so much boasted of

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Brett's Divine Right of Episcopacy. Sclater's Original Draught of the Primitive Church. Bishop Sage's Principles of the Cyprianic age. Vindication of the Principles, &c. Bishop Skinner's Primitive Truth and Order Vindicated.

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