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lignant zeal for the doctrines of ON THE CONNEXION BETWEEN
grace to blast the genuine spirit THE DOCTRINES AND DUTIES OF CHRISTIANITY.
and fruit of these very doctrines !
It has led some to lay that stress MESSRS. EDITORS,
on the appendages, which is due So far as my small experi- only to the substance of religion ; ence will enable me to judge, I to confine their heads and hearts find among Christians, two op- within a small circle of favourite posite errors, equally prejudi- speculations, expressions and cial to pure and undefiled relig- sounds; and to suspect, yea, ion, and dangerous to the souls spositively condemn, as an igno
of men. These have been very rant or unconverted heretic, ev• happily delineated by the late ery Christian brother or preach
pious and beloved Dr. Tappana er, whe steps over this circle.
mouth, January 5th, 1800, you one regular and immense whole, • may be instrumental in remov. so each part has its claim on the
ing "the veil from the eyes of evangelical instructor ; that by prejudice," and in correcting a duly attending to any one branch, mistake, which might otherwise he really befriends and enforces have proved fatal to the everlast. all the rest, as connected with ing peace of many; and at the it; that he cannot declare the same time you will gratify the whole counsel of God, if his diswishes of one, whose professed courses be limited to a few darobject is to promote general hap- ling topics; that he cannot do piness, and to do good to the justice, even to the doctrinal souls of his fellow-men." part of the gospel, without large
CLIO. ly explaining and urging its corEXTRACT.
responding precepts; and final- the « The connexion between the ly, that it would be as absurd to several branches of our religion, charge him with making light of especially between its doctrines certain truths, merely because and duties, while it presents one he does not interweave them
distinguishing proof of its excel- with every sermon, as to infer ! lence and divinity claims the that the compilers of the West
uneeasing and careful attention minster Catechism did not be of its professors and teachers. lieve in the depravity of man, or The most lamentable errors and the satisfaction of Christ, because
mischiefs have arisen from a dis- they do not notice them in every i proportionate or exclusive zeal for answer, but expressly mention .. ceytain parts of Christianity, de- each, only in one answer out of ... tached from the system at large, an hundred and nine !
This has frequently led one de. “ To avoid this disgraceful and scription of its votaries to mag- pernicious extreme, another nify orthodox opinion at the ex- class of believers seem fond of pense of a gospel temper, to considering Christianity merely make faith swallow up charity, 'as a moral or practical system,
good "feelings supplant good enforced by the Assurance of a . . works, yea, al' yngracious, ma- future state. They consider
virtue as the sum and end of the and recovery by grace; by inspir-
ANA would have no obligation for SURVEY OF NEW ENGLAND meaning. It is generally agreed,
CHURCHES. that Christian duty may be sum
(Continued from page 17.) med up in love to God, to Jesus Christ, and our fellow-men. The most cursory survey of But this love neither is nor can our churches will convince us, be excited merely by the pre- that, in their whole internal cepts enjoining it ; but it is pro- state, they are far removed from duced and nourished by a cordial the sacred standard. Duties belief of those doctrines, which plainly inculcated by Scripture hold up the proper objects and are omitted; while opinions and incitements of it, or which ex-practices are common, for which hibit the true character and rela- there is no foundation in the tions of God, of Jesus Christ, of word of God. The neglect of our human and Christian breth- gospel discifiline, in its various ren. While these doctrines branches, is so prominent a feamake us see and feel our corres- ture in our churches, it has so ponding obligations, they pre- marred their beauty, and opened sent motives which constrain us a door for such disorders, that it to fulfil them, and convey those cannot justly pass unnoticed. divine influences, comforts and In this survey it will be prohopes, which render our obedi- per briefly to remark on a varieence not only practicable, but ty of irregularities, which are fervent and delightful. They found in our ecclesiastical discialso give to our moral obedience pline, and which greatly obscure a new and evangelical complex- the primitive glory of our Zion. ion, by connecting it with a deep Let us inquire, then, whether impression of our ruin by sin, the members of our churches in
general exercise a suitable watch in private. In this way many and care over each other. One smaller improprieties in the important end of forming gospel conduct of Christians might be churches is, that Christians, be- corrected, and their character ing united in a social state, may rendered much more amiable. have greater advantages to pro- When any one grossly violates mote each other's holiness, com- the laws of our holy religion, it fort, and usefulness. This end becomes a very serious and im- . would be answered in an eminent portant affair. Whether his of degree, if Christian benevolence fence be of a public or private were always active, and always nature, his brethren should imdirected by inspired precepts.mediately adopt the measures Each believer might, in a mea- prescribed in order to bring him sure, avail himself of the wisdom to repentance. And no comand piety of the whole body: plaint should be made to the while the influence of the whole church as a body, before every body would be the conjoined eni- proper method has been used in ergy and usefulness of all its private. But the duty of private members. But how little of the reproof and admonition is so mutual watch and care, enjoined generally neglected, that an ofby the gospel, do we find among fender is often quite surprised, nominal Christians! How little if not irritated at the visit of does their conduct show, that brethren, who come to reprove. they are seeking to improve The faults of Christians are uneach other in knowledge and in noticed, except by the tongue of virtue!
slander. And it is not unfreWhen a brother is chargeable quently the case, that those, who, with misconduct, it is our indis- for some reason, will not go and pensable duty to treat him ac- tell a brother a fault, which has cording to Christ's direction in been charged against him, nor Matt. xviii. “Go, and tell him even take pains to inquire, whethhis fault between thee and him er he is guilty, are among the first alone." If church members to circulate a report, which eswould faithfully comply with this sentially injures, if not destroys divine rule, and endeavour, in his reputation. the spirit of Christian meekness Church members, who have reand love, to reclaim every of- ceived no personal affront, somefending brother; much would times excuse themselves for the be done to diminish the frequen- neglect above mentioned by say. cy of public censure, and to pro- ing, that the offending brother mote the peace and purity of the has done nothing to injure them, church. The duty of privately and therefore that it is not their admonishing is not confined to particular concern to reprove. pastors, but is expressly extend- But even this excuse, so freed by the apostle to Christians quently made, shows that our in general. There are faults in churches are generally chargeaprofessors, which admit of no ble with seeking their own things, definition, and cannot be the and not the things of Jesus Christ. ground of any public transac- How little of the gospel spirit do i tion, but yet ought to be noticed men of such a character discover