« PreviousContinue »
may not only be early and more fully instructed in our religious principles, but in the nature and design of our Christian discipline; and, through divine assistance, be enabled to adorn our holy profession, by a consistent conduct and circumspect conversation in all godliness and honesty ; thereby avoiding the reproach which some, through a defection in principle, or a degeneracy in practice, have brought upon themselves, and the body of which they profess to be members.”
4thly. “That the unfaithful, the immoral, and the libertine professors, may be seasonably reminded of their danger and of their duty, as well as of the great labor, which, in much gospel love, hath been from time to time bestowed for their help and recovery; and that such as continue to despise and reject the convictions of truth, and the counsel of their brethren, and refuse to be reclaimed, may be made sensible that they themselves are the cause of their separation from our religious fellowship and communion."
And, in order that these purposes may be more fully answered, the following rules and regulations are, on due consideration, recommended to the observance of friends, overseers and meetings. In the exercise of this discipline, care, persuasion and gentle dealing, ought to be our practice ; laboring, in love and meekness, to bring such as transgress to a sense of their error. But if any cannot be reclaimed, by our Christian endeavors, the extent of our judgment and proceedure is, the disowning of such to be of our communion. And as this authority and practice is Christian, so it is laudable and
reasonable in society; and as it is attended to, in uprightness and singleness of heart, it will tend to promote the good and welfare of the Church, and to unite in a care and concern for the oversight one of another, that all may endeavor to walk decently, humbly, and honestly, and be of one mind, as becomes the servants and followers of our Holy Lord and Law-Giver; and to practice that commendable order, ever necessary in the Christian Church, agreeably to that injunction of our blessed Lord, Matt. xviii. 15, 16, 17. Moreover, if thy brother shall trespass against thee, go and tell him his fault between thee and him alone: if he shall hear thee, thou hast gained thy brother. But if he will not hear thee, then take with thee one or two more, that in the mouth of two or three witnesses, every word may
be established. And if he shall neglect to hear them, tell it unto the church : but if he neglect to hear the church, let him be unto thee as an heathen man, and a publican.”
This order is also enjoined by that eminent apostle, Paul, in his epistle to the Phillippians, iv. 8: “ Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.” Now, whatsoever appears in any contrary to these, may in general be said to come under the notice of friends, overseers and meetings.
And as it has been experienced, that in those meetings great comfort and satisfaction have been received and enjoyed, when the members have attended them in awe, humility, and love, with no other view than the honor of God, and the help and assistance one of another, this meeting doth, in brotherly love, exhort all friends carefully to gather in uprightness and singleness of heart, suitable to our calling, and the dignity of that Power which will preside and govern in all our meetings, as we meekly abide under its holy influence. This will divest us of partiality, and stiffness of opinion, and all high thoughts of ourselves, and lead into patience and condescension, according to that declaration of our blessed Lord, “He that is greatest among you, shall be your servant."
It is to be observed, that the dates at the end of the minutes and advices, denote the years in which they were issued by the yearly meeting from the records of which they were taken.
The book is bound with blank leaves, for the purpose of making future additions, which are to be inserted in the manner which may be directed by the yearly meeting. No other additions are to be made.
ACCOUNTS, to be frequently settled, pages 119, 143.
arbitration, to be testified against, 4. Method of proceed-
tering friends with, 4. See Law, 54.
meeting, 114. See Stock, 136.
Bankruptcy. See Trade, 139.
tion of, 10. Advice against reading improper books, 9.
advise to it, 99. Books of records to have alphabets, 123.
manage in the truth, to be timely labored with, 140.
CERTIFICATES. Such as remove to have them, 124. - of
ministers who travel, to be called for, 81. To be granted
erality to the Poor, 56.
diligent attendance of meetings, 72. See Books, 9. Educa-
of monthly meetings, 15.
to lesson the true faith in Christ to be discouraged, 9.
conduct towards those in authority, 16. Advice against ac-
cepting offices, 19—and electing friends thereto, 19.
non-payment of, 18. The unfaithful to be testified against,
Days and TIMES, 27. Adrice against the superstitious ob-
servance of, and giving improper names to, 29.
119. No distinction to be made in the payment of, whether
by endorsement or otherwise, 143.