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endeavours to withdraw men from sin but the Editor will not thence, I presume, maintain, though it follow from his argument, that the term "lamb" was applied to them, to show that by their death, they also atoned for the sins of mankind. The Reverend Editor might have spared the arguments he has adduced to prove, that Jesus was sent into this world as the long-expected Messiah, intended to suffer death and difficulties like other prophets who went before him; as the Editor may find in the compilation in question, as well as in its defence, Jesus of Nazareth represented as "The Son of God," a term synonymous with that of Messiah, the highest of all the prophets; and his life declares him to have been, as represented in the Scriptures, pure as light, innocent as a lamb, necessary for eternal life as bread for a temporal one, and great as the angels of God, or rather greater than they. He also might have omitted to quote such authority as shows, that Christ, being a mediator between God and men, "declared that whatsoever they (his apostles) shall ask in his name, the Father will give them ;" for the Compiler, in his defence of the Precepts of Jesus, repeatedly acknowledged Christ as the Redeemer, Mediator, and Intercessor with God, in behalf of his followers. But such intercession does not, I presume, tend to a proof of the deity or the atonement of Jesus, as interpreted by the Editor; for God is represented in the sacred books to have often shown mercy to mankind for righteous men's sakes; how much more then
would he naturally manifest his favour towards those who might petition him in the name of one, whom he anointed and exalted over all creatures and prophets ? Genesis, ch. XXX. ver. 27 : “I have learned by experience, that the Lord hath blessed me for thy sake.” Jeremiah, ch. xxvii. ver. 18 : “ But if they be prophets, and if the word of the Lord be with them, let them now make intercession to the Lord of hosts.” Moreover, we find angels declared to have been endued with the power of pardoning and redeeming men on various occasions. Genesis, ch. xlviii. ver. 16 : “ The Angels which redeemeth me from evil, bless the lads !" Exodus, ch. xxii. vers. 20, 21 :
Behold, I send an Angel before thee, to keep thee in the way, and to bring thee into the place which I have prepared. Beware of him, and obey his voice, provoke him not, for he will not pardon your transgressions : for my name is in him."
With regard to this doctrine, I have carefully noticed every argument advanced by the Editor, from the authority of Jesus himself, in its support; and have adduced such arguments as may be used by those that reject that doctrine, and which they rest on the authority of the same Divine Teacher : leaving the decision of the subject to the discreet judgment of the public, but declining to deliver any opinion, as an individual, as to the merits thereof.
On the Doctrines and Miraculous Narrations of
the New Testament.
I REGRET that the Editor should have accused the Compiler of having charged" on the dogmas or doctrines of Christianity those wars and that bloodshed which have occurred between nations merely termed Christians.” The Compiler, in his defence of the Precepts of Jesus, has ascribed such disputes and contentions not to any thing containe 1 in the Scriptures, but to the different interpretations of dogmas which he esteemed not essential for salvation. In order to convince the Editor of the accuracy of my assertion, I entreat. his attention to page 18, line 22, and page 22, line 24, of my defence of the compiled Precepts, under the designation of “ An Appeal to the Christian Public."*
The Editor observes, that wars and bloodshed existed before the promulgation of Christianity in the world ; neither Christianity, therefore, nor its dogmas, created the causes of wars and bloodshed. They existed in the human mind long before its doctrines were published ; and that quarrels and feuds between the Arians and the Orthodox in the fourth and fifth centuries were lit
* [See above, p. 117, line 26, and p. 121, lines 1--4.
tle more than struggles for power and wealth.” Although human frailty and want of perfection in men are in fact esteemed as the first and original causes of their improper conduct and wicked deeds, yet in the ordinary acceptation of the term "cause," good or evil acts are invariably attributed to their immediate motives, ascertained form circumstantial evidence; and these acts are consequently held to entitle their respective agents to praise or reproach.-But as the motives of actions and the secrets of the human heart are in truth known to God alone, it is indeed beyond my power to establish in a satisfactory manner, that the majority of the primitive Arians and Trinitarians were excited by their mistaken religious zeal to slay each other, and not by a desire of power and worldly advancement. I would appeal, however, to the Editor himself, whether it would not be indeed very illiberal to suppose, that almost all the Christian world should for a period of two hundred years have been weak or wicked enough to engage wilfully in causing the blood of each other to be shed under the cloak of religion, and merely for worldly motives. But as this must be a matter of opinion, I beg to show that which has been entertained on the subject by one of the highest authorities against the Trinitarians who have written on the history of Christianity. I allude to Dr. Moshiem, whose words I here give, and I entreat my readers to draw their own inferences from them.
Volume 1. page 419 : “After the death of Con1
“ stantine the Great, one of his sons, Constantius, who in the division of the empire became ruler of the East, was warmly attached to the Arian party, whose principles were also zealously adopted by the Empress, and indeed by the whole court.
On the other hand, Constantine and Constans, Emperors of the West, maintained the decrees of the Council of Nice throughout all the provinces between the two contending parties.—Hence arose endless animosities and seditions, treacherous plots, and open acts of injustice and violence between the two contending parties ; Council was assembled against Council, and their jarring and contradictory decrees spread perplexity and confusion throughout the Christian world.” Page 420 :
“His (Gratian's) zeal for their interest, though fervent and active, was surpassed by that of his successor Theodosius the Great, who raised the secular arm against the Arians with a terrible degree of violence, drove them from their churches, and enacted laws, whose severity exposed them to the greatest calamities." It is difficult to conceive what other motives than those of mistaken zeal for a particular doctrine could have influenced the mind of an Emperor like Theodosius to such acts of cruelty and violence: but however that may be, it is obvious that if such a mode of interpreting conduct be adopted, it is difficult to say where we are to stop. The devotion even of the Apostles and Martyrs of Christianity, may be