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kinsian system of a sectarian na. | ent senses. There are lwo senses, ture or tendency; so there has in particular, in which the word
, been little or nothing of this kind may be used, with application to a in the practice of Hopkinsians. system of religious sentiments; They have never formed them it may mean that which is pleasing selves into a sect or denomination, to the people, or that which is suitdistinct from other professing able to the common people. Christians. Their peculiarites re- In the first of the above sepses, spect the fundamental doctrines I admit that the Hopkinsian sysand duties of religion, and not ex- tem is not popular, . It is not, in ternal rites, modes and forms. itself, pleasing to the mass of peo. Hence they are found interspersed ple. It is a system of truth and among various denominations of duty, which must be displeasing to evangelical Christians, such as all, who have not received the Presbyterians, Baptists and Con- love of the truth,' or who feel ingregationalists. Instead of separ. disposed to do their duty. The ating from the churches to which Hopkinsian system sets the charthey belonged, they have generally acter, designs and works of God remained, and endeavoured to in a true and scriptural light, and 'strengthen the things that were must, therefore, be offensive to ready to die.' They have, in. those, who have the carnal mind deed, it is apprehended, been which is enmity against God.' much too fond of union and inter- This system pourtrays the native course with those whose views of character of men, as void of holithe leading doctrines and precepts ness and full of sin; which must, of Christianity materially differ of course, be displeasing to such from their own, Whether this bc as think more highly of themowing to a want of a just sense of selves, than they ought to think, the importance of divine truth, or and are going about to establish of a sufficiently constant and ar- their own righteousness.' This dent love to it'; or to a want of system includes the duty of disinthat self-denial, which elevates the terested love to God and men; soul above the frowns and flatte- which cannot fail to offend such ries, the reproaches and honours as are • lovers of pleasures, rather of the world, I leave every reader than lovers of God, and who all
, to form his own judgment, simply seek their own things.' To add
. subjoining the interrogations of no more, the Hopkinsian system Paul, What communion hath teaches the way of salvation by light with darkness? Or what part grace, through faith in the atonehath he that believeth with an in- ment of Christ; which can never fidel?
please such as are seeking justiOBJECTION IV.
fication by the deeds of the law, The Hopkinsian system is un- and will not come unto Christ, popular.
that they may have life.' And what if it is? Popularity is All unregenerate men, all imnot the test of truth, any more penitent sinners and unbelievers, than ridicule. Was the system of are averse to both truth and duty. sentiments advanced by the pro- And they are the vast majority in phets, by Christ and his apostles, the Christian world, and a great popular?
majority, even in those places, The word popular, however, where there is most of the spirit needs explanation. It is used, and power of religion. That the and may be understood, in differ- Hopkinsian system of sentiments,
therefore, is generally displeasing instructions of the sanctuary, than to the people, is an evidence, not those of any other clergymnen. of its falsehood and impurity, but When He, who spake as never rather of its truth and goodness. man spake, preached the word, Every scheme of religion of hu- the common people heard him man invention, is pleasing to some gladly;' and though they someclasses of wicked, worldly men ; times called his words hard say-. for every such scheme is bottomed ings,' and even • took up stones upon selfish principles. But the to stone him; yet they flocked in
' Hopkinsian systein, like the light multitudes to hear him preach. which beamed from the Sun of The hearers of the apostles were Righteousness, is hateful to all pricked in the heart, and some
• . sorts of evil-doers. If it ever times gnashed on the preacher seems to be viewed with compla- with their teeth;' but still, these cency by the ungodly, it is either champions of truth, who used when they misunderstand it, or * great plainness of speech,' and feign a cordiality which they do opened their mouths with bold. not feel,
ness to declare all the counsel of In the second sense of the word, God,' were thronged with hearers; mentioned above, I maintain, that • so mightily grew the word of the the Hopkinsian system is, of all Lord and prevailed.”
, systems, the most popular. It is
OBJECTION V. suited to the common people, and The Hopkinsian system tends to to all classes of people, in every make atheists and infidels. age and every place. It is a con- That atheists and infidels may sistent system, and therefore in- be found, where Hopkinsian sentelligible to the common people: timents are inculcated, will not it is agreeable to right reason, and be denied; and that individuals
so carries a conviction of its truth are sometimes impelled, by the s to the understandings of all, who clear exhibition and demonstration
attentively and candidly examine of those sentiments, openly to it: this scheme enforces the law avow atheistical and deistical prinof God and condenins every self-ciples, will be granted. But it ish affection, while it proclaims will not be admitted, that Hoppardon to the penitent and holy; kinsian sentiments, however exand thus it .commends itself to plicitly and fully declared, ever
every man's conscience in the make men atheists and infidels. $ sight of God.'. This gives Hop- Men do not need to be made athe- ..
kinsianism a strong hold upon the ists and infidels, for this is their minds of the people, in spite of nalive character. 6. The fool,” their hearts. For this reason it by which is meant the unrenewed is, that thousands consent to hear, sinner, “hath said in his heart, while they hate the truth. This there is no God.” 6. The world will account for two facts; first, by wisdom knew not God, because that the most clear, discriminat- they did not like to retain Him in ing and unreserved preachers of their knowledge ;'or, retaining Hopkinsian sentiments, are more some faint knowledge of Him, they easily settled and less frequently glorified Him not as God.' dismissed, than any other class of Hence the apostle represents the evangelical ministers; and second, Ephesians, in their natural state, that the congregations of such as “ without God," in the origipreachers are generally larger and nal, "atheists, in the world.” And more uniformly attentive to the as mankind are naturally atheists;
so they naturally reject the Rev. | which can justiy be attributed ta elation, which God has given in Hopkinsianism. The preaching the scriptures of truth. Hence, of Hopkinsian sentiments makes in the original of the New Testa infidels, somewhat in the same way ment, there is but one and the that the preaching of Unitarias same word for unbeliever and in- sentiments makes Christians.fidel. Every unbeliever is a prac-i While the preaching of Hopkintical if not a speculative deist. sianism shows bypocrites that they Men need to be unmade, and not are infidels; the preaching of Unimade atheists and infidels. tarianism shows infidels that they
But, though all men, in their may become such Christians as the natural state, have the spirit of preacher describes, without a atheism and infidelity; yet some change of heart; and thus, while are rationally convinced of the Hopkinsianism, by exhibiting the being and perfections of God, and true doctrines of the Gospel, leads. of the truth and divinity of the false professors to become open scriptures; and many more having | infidels; Unitarianism, by pervertimbibed false notions of the cha- ling the doctrines of the Gospel, racter of God and of the contents i and representing them in a light of the scriptures, imagine them- pleasing to the unsanctified heart, selves to be, and profess to be, induces avowed deists to become believers in the Divine Existence professors of the Christian relig. and the inspiration and truth of ion. the scriptures. Individuals of this latter description, when taught by notice of one other objection, viz. a derelopement of the Hopkinsian lihat Hopkinsiunism tends to licensystem, what a being God is, and tiousness. But this would anticiwhat truths the scriptures teach, pate the subject of the next essay; are inclined, by the blindness and which, according to the outlines of perverseness of their hearts, to ! my plan, sketched in No. 1, is, to reject both, and come out openly, | illustrate the practical icndency of as they always were inwardly, the liopkinsian sysien of sentiatheists and infidels. This is all ments. the making of atheists and infidels,
10 "It was in contemplation to trke
But God's commands I did not Thinking the following narrative of a keep. After having endeavoured religious experience may be a means of to establish myself in various repromoting the cause of piety, I transmit ligious opinions, I became violent. it for publication.
A. ly opposed to the doctrine of diFrom early childhood, I have vine sovereignty. Because that been the subject of serious im- doctrine was declared in the pressions. At the age of about scriptures, I almost concluded nine, I commenced prayer.- they were not the word of God. When about sixteen or seventeen Some infidel writers strengthened years old, I resolved to quit the my doubts. When about three sinful pleasures of youth, and ren- or four and twenty, my mind was der obedience to the divine com- involved in awful darkness. The mands. I viewed various systems bible I had read considerably; but of religion. I read the scriptores. to the doctrine of election, which
that reveals, I was greatly oppos- 1 such views and feelings, my mind ed. I now believed the scriptures laboured in unspeakable anguish; were the word of God.
for my sins pressed heavily upon After continuing some time in me. I had a deep sense of guilt, a state of wretchedness, I heard and found no relief. I could see Mr. - preach a sermon on the I thought I should be lost; doctrine of election. Soon after -that God would be just in sendhaving heard this sermon, I had a ing me to hell; but I was unwilclear view of the doctrine. I firmling to go there. I opposed God's ly believed it. I concluded I was justice. After being thus conone of the elect; that Christ died victod for some time, seeing my for me, and therefore greatly re- sins many, great, and exceedingly joiced. My hope of heaven was aggravated, as I was viewing the founded on a speculative view of justice of God in my condemnathe doctrine of election, accompa- tion, thinking I should be sent to nied with a belief that Christ died hell; but being unwilling to be for me in particular. I have since cast off, I not only saw that God seen that my hope was a false one. would be just in my condemnation,
At the time of this conversion, but I also saw that were I destroy
had been thinking of the prac- ed, his justice would shine contice of law. Indeed, I had pre-spicuously glorious. The instant viously commenced the study of I saw my condemnation would be that profession. But being ambi- a means of rendering the justice tious, and wishing to be one of the of God glorious, I felt perfectly first in religion, because I had willing to sink into hell, that God professed to be a Christian, with might be glorified. I gave up all very, little prayer, without much opposition to God, and felt willing consideration, and with no right to be in hell forever. But as I motive, I concluded to prepare for gave up, and felt willing God the Gospel ministry.
should glorify himself by destroyAfter studying a while for the ing my soul, I had a mental or ministry, and at the distance of heart view of the Saviour; and more than a year from the period my soul, instead of sinking to hell, of my conversion; after much as I had thought it would, were I searching and many fears, I was willing God should destroy me, brought to the conclusion that my rested on the Lord Jesus. My hope was built on the sand. I feelings at this moment, I cannot was constrained to give up my
describe. I had seen the glory hope. I had felt conviction of sin of divine justice. I now saw the before abandoning my hope ; but glory of the Saviour. I felt that as soon as that was given up, con- I should praise God in hell, for I viction rushed more powerfully thought that I should go there. into my mind. I felt my sins A few days after this change, deeply, especially some particu- the thought occurred to me that lar ones. I'felt guilty before God. what I had experienced was a For a number of days I was the change of heart, and that instead subject of deep conviction of sin. of sinking to hell, I should be reI saw clearly that for my sins Iceived to heaven. When this deserved eternal death. I saw do thonght first struck my mind, it way to escape that death. I felt seemed to recoil at it. I had seen that God would be just in destroy-clearly, that were I destroyed, ing me; but I was unwilling jus. God would glorify himself in my tice should take place, With destruction. I thought I should
be destroyed; and chose rather to It is my earnest desire that no have God glorified, than be saved. one commence study for the migBut soon I received a hope of istry, as I did, without right moheaven. It is now several years tives; and that none be deceived since this change; but I still feel with a false hope. willing God should save or destroy
Utica Christ. Repos. me, as shall be most for his glory.
gave their fellow-men; to which In forming a' society for the lle adds, " Por if ye forgive mes purpose of settling and supporting their trespasses, your heavenly a minister of the gospel, it is cus
Father will also forgive you: But tomary to admit such persons if ye forgive not men their tresinembers, as make no pretensions passes, neither will your Father to religion. To me, this course forgive your trespasses. of conduct has the appearance of Forgiveness being a duty so iacalling on the enemies of God, to dispensably necessary, it is very support his cause. I should there- important to know what it is, aud fore be highly interested in the towards whom, and when, and discussion of this question, through how we ought to exercise it, and, the medium of your Magazine: why it is necessary, in order to Is the practice of admitting per- obtain forgiveness of God, sons members of a society formed
It would, therefore, be a very for the purpose of supporting that acceptable, and I doubt not, a very rcligion, for which they profess no
beneficial service, if some of your cordial friendship, consistent ci-Correspondents would take up the ther with reason or scripture? subject of forgiveness, and so dis
LISTENER, cuss it, as clearly and satisfacto
rily to answer the following ques
tions: POB TAB HOPKINGIAS MAGAZINE.
1. What is it to forgive? MR. EDITOR,
2. Whom are we bound to forAs our Lord signally exemplifi- give? ed, so he repeatedly enjoins the du- 3. When are we bound to forty of forgiveness. In his various give them? discourses, He represents forgive- 4. To what extent? And, ness of injuries, as essential to the 5. Why must we forgive them, Christian character, and indispen in order to be forgiven of God? sable to obtaining the favour of
IGNOSCENDUS. God. In the form of prayer, which at their request, He gave to his A Correspondent desires ab disciples, He directs them to pray Exposition of Hebrews vi. 4—6. God to forgive them, as they for
ANSWER TO A QUESTION. observe a request to have the fact Messrs. Editors,
accounted for, that professde In your number for January, I Christians are so generally " dio