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in comparison with those which represent this free gift, as proceeding from God only; and in some of them we are milled by our translation, as in Eph. iv. 39. And be ye kind to one another, tender-hearted, forgiving one another, even as God, for Christ's fake,. has freely forgiven you. It ought to have been rendered as God in Chrift, that is, in the gospel of Christ, has forgiven you. Besides, the word which is here rendered forgive signifies conferring favours in general, and not the forgiveness of fin in particular; and the whole passage was intended to inculcate a benevolent disposition, in imitation of God, who had conferred the most valuable favours upon mankind, in the gospel of Christ.
Many passages in which we are said to be justified by faith, and not by the works of the law, were intended to oppose the doctrine of the jews, who maintained that the observance of the law of Moses was absolutely necessary to salvation. Writing upon this subject, the apostle Paul expresses himself in the following manner, Rom. iii. 21, &c. But now the righteousness of God, without the law, is manifested, being witnessed by the law and the prophets; even the righteousness of God, which is by faith of Jesus Christ, unto all and upon all that believe, for there is no difference. For all bave finned, and come fort of the glory of God, being justified freely by his grace, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus; whom God has set forth to be a propitiation, through
faith in his blood, to declare his righteousness, for the remiffion of fins that are past, through the forbearance of God; to declare, I say, at this time, his righteousness, that he might be just, and the justifier of him that believeth in Jesus. Where is boasting then? It is excluded. By what law? of works? nay, but by the law of faith. Therefore we conclude that a man is justified by faith, without the deeds of the law.
If we consider the whole of this passage, and the connection in which it stands, we shall be satisfied, that the apostle is here asserting that, in the gospel of Christ, which was confirmed by his death and resurrection, the divine being, as from a mercy-seat (which the word ought to be rendered, and not propitiation) declares his goodness and mercy to mankind ; and since the patriarchs, who believed and obeyed before the law, were justified without the works of the law, so God, acting ftill upon the same maxims, is juft, and the jews have no reason to complain of it, when he justifies finners who believe and obey, freely, and without the works of the law of Mofes, under the gospel.
N. B. I do not pretend that this pamphlet contains an illustration of all the texts that have been urged in favour of the doctrines which are controverted in the Appeal; for then I must have written a commentary upon the whole bible, as there is hardly a text in which fome persons do not imagine that they see their own peculiar sentiments ; but I think I have taken notice of all that can well be said to be of much consequence. If any considerable omission be pointed out to me, it shall be supplied in future editions.
ALMIGHTY God, the giver of all good, and especially the Father of lights, and the fountain of all wisdom and knowledge; we thank thee that thouk bast put a fpirit in man, and that thine inspiration giveth as understanding ; that, being formed after thine own image, we find ourselves possessed of a nature superior to that of brute creatures; and being endowed with the faculty of reason are capable of investigating important truth, and of governing our conduct, so as to attain to very distinguished degrees of excellence and happiness.
We thank thee that, in aid of this light of naturen thou hast superadded the gift of revelation; having, from time to time, communicated to mankind, by thy servants the prophets, the most useful information, concerning thy nature, perfections and government, concerning our duty here, and our expectations hereafter. And we more especially
rejoice that, upon every occasion of thy gracious intercourse with mankind, thou hast represented thyself to us as the proper object of our reverence, love, and confidence; as a being cf boundless goodness, and the greatest compassion to thofe frailties and infirmities, to which it has seemed good to thy wisdom to subject us; as one who expectest no more of us than thou hast enabled us to perform ; and who, upon our sincere return to our duty, art ever ready to extend the freest mercy and forgiveness towards us, even after our most aggravated and repeated offences.
We thank thee, more especially, for the last and most perfect revelation of thy will to mankind, in the gospel of Jesus Christ, in whom it hath pleased thee, that all fulness poould dwell ; who has established upon the furest foundations, the great and important doctrines of the proper unity and mercifulness of thy nature, and thy unrivalled supremacy with respect to himself, as well as to all other beings, and all other things; and who has likewise given to us the most fatisfactory assurance of a resurrection from the dead, confirmed to us by his own death and resurrection; whereby we are encouraged to expect, that, because he lives, we shall live also.
It has seemed good to thy unsearchable wifdom, (which permits the rise and continuance of evil, in order, we doubt not, to bring about the greatest
good) good) that this most excellent religion, so honourable to thee and so beneficial to mankind, should, by means of the base artifices of fome, and the general igrorance which lately overspread the world, become grossly corrupted; whereby such opinions have prevailed among the professors of christianity, as greatly dishonour thy nature, imply the most unjust reflections on thy righteous moral govern. nient, and are highly injurious to the virtue and happiness of men. How has the gold become dim, how is the most fine gold changed !
The great and important doctrine of thy divine unity has been generally abandoned, and objects of fupreme worship multiplied. Thy messenger and servant, the meek and humble Jesus, who, upon all occasions, referred his wisdom and mighty works to thee, his God and Father, speaking and acting by him, has been advanced to proper equality with thyself; and even his mother, Mary, and innu. merable faints and angels, have likewise, been addressed, as if they were omnipresent beings. By thus dividing thy being, robbing thee of thy essential attributes and perfections, and distributing them among a multiplicity of inferior beings, depraved and unworthy notions of thy moral character have consequently prevailed, and many of the evils of idolatry have been introduced among the profelfors of that religion, which acknowledges but