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of repentance, designed to relieve some "anxiety" in his Grace's mind: the letter is both philosophical and pious: on so common, and at the same time so difficult a subject, few men have written better.

The bishop published another Charge in 1802, to promote the consideration of one of the reforms in the church, which he had proposed twenty years before, the enforcement of clerical residence, on which he had corresponded with Mr. Pitt and Lord Grenville, in the year 1800, and on which also he submitted his opinion by letter to the Lord Chancellor, Eldon, in the year 1803. No attention, he says, (p. 370,) was paid to this last letter, and he in terfered no further in the business. He neither thought so highly, he proceeds, of, the Chancellor's talents on any subject, nor so meanly of his own, on the subject of ecclesiastical reform, as to judge that it became him to overlook the discourtesy of not answering a letter. The Clergy Non-residence Bill, then in agitation, was, he concludes, passed into an act, which has rather increased than lessened the evil. [To be concluded in our next.]

ART. II. Remarks on the Eternal Sonship of Christ; and the use of Reason in matters of Revelation, suggested by several Passages in Dr. Adam Clarke's Commentary on the New Testament. In a Letter to a Friend. By Richard Watson. 8vo. pp. 92. Blanshard, City Road.

1818.

R. WATSON, as well as Dr.

a great number of his associates into the path of free inquiry. In every case but one, the present publication must produce important consequences in the Methodist body: the case which we except is, we admit, very unlikely, but it is possible; it is that of Dr. Adam Clarke's writing a "yea and nay" defence, partly vindicating and partly retracting his heresy, and skilfully covering the controversy with a veil of orthodox phraseology. The event will soon enable the reader to decide upon the justness of our speculations.

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Dr. Adam Clarke is charged by his accuser with two outward signs of heretical pravity. The first is his denying the eternal Sonship of Christ," in some of the notes in his Commentary on the New Testament. These (says Mr. Watson, p. 3), have been "the subject of much and serious discussion;""they have," he adds, "made some converts;" and he refers to "a written controversy" concerning them, from which he looks for "considerable mischief."

The following passage from Dr. Adam Clarke's notes, will explain both the substance and the mode of his alleged heresy; it will be seen from the passage that the good Doctor thought that he was removing a difficulty from the doctrine of the Deity of Christ:

"If Christ be the Son of God as to his divine nature, then he cannot be eternal; for Son implies a Father, and Father implies in reference to Son, preceding in time, if not in nature too.

M Adam Clarke, is an eminent Father and Son imply the idea of

Methodist preacher; and this pamphlet is published at head quarters, under the direction, of course, of the portion of the Wesleian hierarchy established in London. It is the official sounding of the charge of heresy from the trumpet of the regiment, against the learned doctor, who is yet in honour in the Liverpool district, but can scarcely be expected to maintain his rank beyond another Conference, unless he recant his errors. If he should defend his opinious with ability and spirit, he will not strengthen his own standing, but be may occasion a schism in the Connexion: though we do not think that the time is yet come, when a Methodist of even Dr. Adam Clarke's learning and talents, would be able to lead off

generation; and generation implies a time in which it was effected, and time also antecedent to such generation. If Christ be the Son of God as to his divine nature, then the Father is of necessity prior, consequently superior to him. Again, if this divine nature were begotten of the Father, then it must be in time; i. e. there was a period in which it did not exist, and a period when it began to exist. This destroys the eternity of our blessed Lord, and robs him at once of his Godhead. To say that he was begotten from all eternity, is, in my opinion, absurd, and the phrase eternal Son, is a positive contradiction. Eter nity is that which has had no beginning, nor stands in reference to time. Son

supposes time, generation and father, and time also antecedent to such generation. Therefore, the conjunction of these two terms, Son and eternity, is absolutely impossible, as they imply essentially different and opposite ideas." Note on Luke i. 35.

These reasonings are pronounced by Mr. Watson to be "extremely futile, as founded upon mere human analogies:" he would prove himself a prodigy if he could shew any other foundation upon which the ideas suggested by the terms father and son can rest.

Dr. A. Clarke maintains that the phrase "Son of God," designates Christ's human nature, and refers to his miraculous conception: this, Mr. Watson denies, and he is much more successful in some of his objections to the Doctor's hypothesis, than in the establishment of his own, which is, that the phrase is "an appellation of Christ's divine nature, with reference to his personal existence in the Trinity, and expressive of one of his peculiar and eternal relations in that personality to God the Father."

The Doctor says, "the doctrine of the eternal Sonship of Christ is antiscriptural," he can find no express declaration in the Scriptures concerning it. True, replies the Remarker (p. 6); but neither is there express scripture for the Trinity ("except it be that in 1 John, so often disputed, and the genuineness of which Dr. Clarke has given up"), nor for the two natures of Christ, nor for infant baptism. He proceeds, however, to quote Scripture in behalf of eternal Sonship, beginuing with the phrase, only-begotten, John i. 14, 18. Should it be objected that God gave this only-begotten to suffer, and that therefore it could not be the divine nature, our author is not thus to be stopped: he answers, (p. 11,) “If it suffered no pain, it suffered something; of this there are mysterious, and from the nature of the thing, only mysterious indications in Scripture."

Mr. Watson's next argument is from the term Father. "When" (he says, p. 12) "the awful veil which shrouds the Incomprehensible, is in part withdrawn by the spirit of revelation, and we are permitted at least a glance of the ineffable manner in which he subsists; when the three divine hypostases are exhibited in mysterious distinction and unity, and names are solemnly

given to each, the Father is the high and expressive distinction of the first." This piece of sublimity, original as far as respects the Scriptures, is followed by something exceedingly droll. The first person is the Father of the divine nature; "but of the human nature of Jesus, the first person is not the Father; FOR the sacred temple of our Lord's body was produced by the Holy Ghost, the third person." (lb.)

From Rom. i. 3, 4, our intrepid Remarker attempts to prove the two natures of Christ, and he decides that the phrase," according to the spirit of holiness," "is equivalent to according to his Divine nature! (P. 15, note.) He elsewhere (p. 42) contends, that the resurrection of Christ is a proof of his supreme divinity! Does he mean that it is mediately a proof, by proving that he was mortal! He will, perhaps, grant this, for he advances positions and makes concessions, which must startle his more wary polemical brethren. For instance, he cites (p. 44), with seeming triumph, in proof of the eternal Sonship of Christ, Heb. v. 7, 8, contending, that when the writer describes the prayers and supplications, the strong crying and tears, the obedience and suffering, the fear and the deliverance of the Son, "he must refer distinctively and exclusively to the divine nature of Christ.” "Was it (he asks) a subject to be introduced with so great an emphasis of holy wonder, that the Son, if his human nature alone were contemplated, should become obedient unto suffering?" Thus, then, we have an assertion from the highest Methodist authority, of the sufferings of the Supreme Deity. Again, Mr. Watson, with equal frankness, concedes that Isaiah's prophecy, A virgin shall conceive, &c. was, before the accomplishment, “obscure" and "“ equivocal," that the Jews did not expect the supernatural birth of the Messiah, and that the disciples of Christ might not know of his miraculous conception until the day of Pentecost. (Pp. 38-42.)

The second mark of heresy which Mr. Watson discovers in his brother Dr. Adam Clarke, is in his "canon of interpretation," laid down at the end of his Commentary, "that what is contrary to reason is contrary to Scripture." (P. 40) This, he observes, leads to and authorizes Arian

and Socinian errors. (Pp. 51 and 82.) Nay, Dr. A. Clarke has in some places stated the doctrine of the use of reason in religion, more broadly than any Socinian writer, than "even Dr. Priestly* or Mr. Belsham." (P. 64.)

In opposition to this pernicious and fatal notion, advanced by the learned Methodist, the more orthodox brother declares, (p. 83,) that with him "it is of small consideration, whether a doctrine be reasonable or not," for that "truth is not to be prejudiced by the reasonings of men;" that (p. 60) "the doctrine of the Trinity in Unity," stands upon 66 no rational evidence of the doctrine itself;" that (p. 68) "the doctrines of the Trinity in Unity; of the union of two natures in one personal Christ; of the resurrection of the same body; not only transcend, but contradict human reason;" nay, (p. 90,) that it is, to his mind at least, a very strong argument, à priori, against any scheme, that it renders a doctrine of pure revelation less difficult to reason. With singular felicity, he quotes Miss M'Avoy, the Liverpool lass, who has, or had, the incomprehensible faculty of seeing with her fingers, as an illustration of the occasional reasonableness of an unreasonable faith. (P. 72.)

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"

This opponent of Dr. A. Clarke endeavours to fasten odium upon his principle of the use of reason, by shewing that it is acted upon by "the modern Socinians," the universal scarecrows. He says, (p. 66,) in a sentence which has “a most lame and impotent conclusion," "when a passage in the New Testament stubbornly contradicts their reason, which they are sufficiently ready to assume is eternal reason, they expel the chapter_or_verse from the sacred record; and often, on very insufficient evidence of its want of genaineness." This self-mocking passage peeds no comment. But Mr. Watson means that "Socinians" strike out of the Scriptures the words and phrases and sentences which agree not with

* Mr. Richard Watson quotes several times, and always misspells, the name of Priestley. His pamphlet is not badly printed, and we infer that he is a total stranger to Dr. Priestley's works, as we dare say he is to those of all other Socinians. His reference to them is not, we believe, even at second haud.

their system, solely on account of that disagreement. He should have substantiated a charge, which he ought to know that Unitarians repel with indignation. At least, he should have forborne to blame a practice which he himself finds convenient. We will explain ourselves. Mr. W.'s hypothesis is, that the phrase, “Son of God," denotes the Divine nature of Christ, and not the human. But an unlucky text stands in the way, viz. Mark xiii. 32: But of that day and that hour knoweth no man, no not the angels which are in heaven, NEITHER THE SON, but the Father. How is this difficulty obviated? Simply by remarking, that all the passages in the New Testament, where the term Son of God occurs as applied to Christ, have been examined, except this solitary text; and that Dr. Clarke confesses the difficulty of it, and appears disposed to give up the genuineness of the clause, " neither the Son." (P. 47.) So, then, truth is satisfied if Dr. Clarke be silenced, and the appearance of a disposition in that Commentator to abandon a clause, because it is in direct hostility to the doctrine of the deity of Christ, shall suffice for its being treated as spurious, though it is found in every existing manuscript, and

every known version. The "Socinians," forsooth, are driving to the "Serbonian bog," (p. 82,) inasmuch as they "expel chapters and verses,

often, on very insufficient evidence :” whither, then, are they bending, who connive at the excision of words and clauses which obstruct their system, not only without evidence, but against all evidence whatsoever? Their critical pilgrimage must terminate in some Dismal Swamp, or Slough of Despond.

ART IV.- Liturgies for Unitarian

Worship. Second Edition. 12mo.
Hunter and Eaton. 2s. 6d. 1817.

Tform, or work compiled by HIS is a republication, in a cheap Mr. Rutt, in 1801. He has put ont a second edition, at the request of a Christian society, who felt the want of such a help. We recommend the Liturgies to such small Unitarian congregations as have no minister to lead their devotions, and approve of a Form of Prayer.

* See Griesbach in loc.

POETRY.

From "Emblems and other Devises, gathered, Englished and moralized, and diverse, newly devised by Geffrey Whitney,"- -a Friend of Sir Philip Sidney.

Omnis Caro Fonum.

All flesh is grass, and withereth like the hay:

To-day, man laughs, to-morrow, lies in clay.

Then let him mark the frailty of his kind,
For here his term is like a puff of wind;
Like bubbles small, that on the waters rise,
Or like the flow'rs whom Flora freshly
dyes.

Yet in one day their glory all is gone:
So wordly pomp, which here we gaze upon :
Which warneth all that here their pageants
play

How well to live, but not how long to stay.

Superest quod suprà est.

E'en as a flow'r, or like unto the grass, Which now doth stand, and strait with scythe doth fall;

So is our state: now here, now hence we

pass:

For Time attends with shredding scythe for all.

And Death, at length, both old and young doth strike,

And into dust doth turn us all alike.

Yet, if we mark how swift our race doth run,

And weigh the cause why we created be; Then shall we know when that this life is done,

We shall be sure our country right to see. For here we are but strangers that must flit: The nearer home, the nearer to the pit. O happy they, that, pondering this aright, Before that here their pilgrimage be past, Resign this world, and march with all their might,

Within that path that leads where joys sball last;

And, whilst they may, there treasure up

their store,

Where, without rust, it lasts for evermore. This world must change, that world shall still endure.

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Here pleasures fade; there shall they

endless he:

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Fame the shadowing forth of Immortality. The names that long oblivion have defied, And wild commotion's earth-appalling shocks,

Casting broad shadows o'er the silent tide Stand in lone grandeur, like eternal rocks Of Time's unebbing flood, whose waters glide

To unseen ocean, from its awful spring, And waft along each light and earth-born thing,

Yet leave these monuments in lonelier pride.'

There stand they-fortresses uprear'd by man,

Whose earthly frame is mortal-symbols high

Of life unchanging, power that cannot die

Proof that our nature is not of a span,
But in its holiest principles allied
To life and love and joy unperishing.
T. N. T.

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In most angelic strain it lengthens on Earth's greenest bowers with fresh delight to fill,

Heard breathing from the silence of the sky
Or trembling in the joy of gushing rill,
Or whispering o'er the lakes unrippled

breast

Till its last earthly melodies are still
Hush'd 'mid the joys of immortality
In the calm bosom of eternal rest.
T. N. T.

OBITUARY.

Feb. 2, 1818, at Westerham, Kent, Miss JANE SALE, in the 24th year of her age; whose character entitled her to the affectionate esteem of her relatives and friends, and whose death is deeply lamented by all who knew her. She was interred in the burial-ground belonging to the General Baptist Society, at Bessell's Green, near Sevenoaks, on Sunday, the 15th. An address was delivered on the solemn occasion, by Mr. S. Dobell, of Cranbrook, to a very numerous and affected audience. The text, Psal. xxiii. 4, was explained, as expressing the Psalmist's confidence in the preserving goodness of God, rather than his hope in the termination of his life; yet, in application to the event, was considered in a more popular sense, as pointing out a remedy and support against the fear of death.

In early life, the subject of this record made religion her highest regard, and from her childhood was always attached to reading, particularly the sacred Scriptures: she afforded her friends much gratification in contemplating the improvement she derived from that inexhaustible source of wisdom and instruction, and has left behind her an example worthy the imitation of the young. While useful studies of less importance were not neglected, or left unimproved, she frequently spoke of the pleasure she found in pursuits of a religious nature in preference to any other.

Although blessed with health and vivacity, (before the lingering disorder which terminated in her death,) she had not been allured from her duty to her God, by the follies and vanities of a giddy world; hut conscientiously adhered to an upright, steady perseverance in the path of piety and virtue. Before she was led to suppose her illness of a dangerous nature, she observed, “Through all the changing scenes of life, I have ever found the purest source of pleasure and comfort was in the stedfast adherence to holiness." Her religion was the religion of the heart; she laid but little stress on matters of a speculative nature, though she was not careless and indifferent respecting truth: her sentiments were rational and devout,-the result of an impartial investigation pursued by an unbiassed mind. While she was candid towards those who differed from her in opinion, she was decided in favour of Unitarian Christianity. The example, sufferings and constancy of the Saviour of the world, as a spotless pattern for her imitation, were much impressed on her mind, and as far as in her lay, she copied this brightest model of excellence in seeking her God, who was present with her, by the power of a living

faith, "in a distressing hour," as but a short time before she expired, she said, with calmness and composure, to her sur. rounding friends, "Behold with what resignation a Christian can die!" D. C.

13, at his house on Dulwich Common, in his 86th year, Percival North, Esq. one of the oldest attendants at Essex Street Chapel.

When valuable members of society are removed from this transitory state of existence, their surviving friends are naturally anxious to retain such imperfect memorials as memory can retrace, and description supply. It also becomes a duty to record merits, from which there are few who may not profit. The late Mr. NORTH, of Bridge Street, was so dear to his relatives, so beloved by his friends, and so respected by a most extensive acquaintance, that few men will be so generally regretted, and none can deserve to be more so.

A sound understanding, a manly character, a most affectionate, benevolent and liberal heart, were in him adorned by the kindest, most frank, and winning manners; his open, placid, animated and benignant countenance, pourtrayed the heart that en lightened it, inspired confidence and invited to friendship, which his solid worth always confirmed. He spent a long life in active, useful and profitable industry; upright, honourable and liberal in all his dealings, he filled every situation that he was called to, with distinguished ability and unsullied integrity, and with manners so engaging, that had be aspired to the highest honours and dignities which the City of London could confer, few were so likely to attain them. He had early imbibed, and zealously cultivated and supported, the genuine principles of civil, religious and constitutional freedom. He was from early conviction, a firm believer in the unity of the Godhead; a regular attendant on, and supporter of, the Unitarian doctrine; and a truly pious and religious man. His deeds of charity and benevolence were not merely the result of occasional applications, or temporary feelings, but constant, regular and extensive, supplying the widow and the orphan, sustaining the helpless, and protecting the distressed. In domestic life and social intercourse, he was the delight of all who knew him; hospitable, animated, zealous in every good cause, the promoter of every good work, and the inspirer of every kind and generous feeling. After having spent a long life in the practice of every virtue, he resigned his mortal existence with perfect

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