網頁圖片
PDF
ePub 版

sentences that contain merely the opinion and assertion of these men. Whereas in my 7th letter, you will find the arguments, as well as the opinions of orthodox commentators. Besides, suppose in my application of scripture, I should merely give the opinion of our writers-would not every discerning reader say I must be hard pushed on the field of debate? I ight quote. Murray, Winchester, Ballou, Balfour, Rayner, Streeter and Whittemore, and show what they have said but though I esteem the works of these men highly, and consider them unanswera ble, they are not the kind of authority which 1 want in this discussion. They are, however, as good for me, as your writers are for you. I shall therefore pay no attention to your quotations from Henry and Wesley.

As I made several extracts from Clarke, and as you have agreed to abide by his decision,' I will observe, that Clarke explains your first, second, third and fourth objections in accordance with Universalism. Now sir, have you the candour to abide by his decision? If so, acknowledge your error in regard to these texts. The fifth, sixth, and seventh texts of your letter, Clarke thinks have a double meaning, and refer 'primarily to the destruction of Jerusalem.' I will not stop to show the extreme absurdity of his notion, concerning the double meaning of scripture, but I will merely inquire, whether you will abide his decision on these?

When you will answer this in the affirmative, I am prepared to discuss the notion of the double meaning of these texts! But this you cannot do,

for you have feigned to believe it absurd, to refer such texts, to temporal calamities.

I deny the charge of distorting the views of Clarke on your fifth objection-I have given the very language where he speaks of its primary meaning.

Your ninth, tenth, eleventh and twelfth objections are fully answered in my 7th letter; and when you will point out the incorrectness of these answers, 1 will consider what you have said.— But to assume your application in the first place, and then to reply to my explanations by quotations from your own commentators, is more than I can permit. And unless you refute what has been said on these texts, I shall take for granted that you are unable to do it.

You say, I appealed to Clarke. I did, and in every instance in which I did, he sustained my views. I appealed also to Whitby, Grotius, Macknight, Hammond, Pearce, Lightfoot, and Cappe, and they also sustained my views. But I did not say that Clarke agrees with Universalists on all of your twelve texts, and when you intimate that I did, you intimate what every unbiassed reader knows is false. As far then as I appealed to Clarke, he justifies my explanations, and unless you falsify your word, you will admit this. It must be mortifying for you to know that all your proof texts are explained by orthodox critics, as we explain them. But so it is, and it shows the great weakness of your cause.

From the foregoing remarks, it will be seen, that you have attempted no reply to that part of my 7th letter, in which I examine your twelve

texts. Every explanation is passed in silence. My arguments therefore remain in their full force.

I will now consider what you have said, in answer to the four texts, with which I concluded that letter. John, xii. 32. 'And if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw all men unto me.' Without producing a single argument against my application of this, you assert, 'that these words are no proof against the eternity of misery, and that no man, unless blinded by a false creed, and basely interested in the establishment of a false doctrine, could think they did!' O candor and charity! whither have ye fled?

You also assert that they only teach, that the means of salvation are put into the hands of Jews and Gentiles, but if to 'put the means of salvation in the hands of Jews and Gentiles,' is drawing ALL MEN to Christ, then it is requisite, that we should have a new dictionary, for none but a 'profound scholar' could ever discover this. "Clarke says, that there is probably an allusion in this text, to a fable among the ancients. Jupiter, they said 'had a chain of gold, which he could at any time, let down from heaven, and by it, draw the earth and all its inhabitants to himself. By this chain, the poets pointed out the union between heaven and earth; or in other words, the government of the universe by the extensive chain of causes and effects. It was termed golden to point out, not only the beneficence of the Divine Providence; but also that infinite philanthrophy of God, by which he influences and attracts all mankind to himself.' Love then, is the golden chain by which Jesus will

draw all men to himself. And sir, this passage would satisfy me that Universalism is true, did not the phrase all men occur in it, for the figure used, and the means described, prove it beyond all dispute. Jesus will display his goodness, and draw a world to his own bosom, by the cords of love. Methodists have often declared, that there is not an unconditional promise in the Bible. There was originally a condition in the text before us-that condition has been fulfilled, Jesus was lifted up. Now, therefore, the promise is unconditional. I WILL draw all men unto

me.

Promises of this nature may be found on almost every page of the Bible. Thus we read: "In thee shall all the families of the earth be blessed. (Gen. xii. 3, xxviii. 14, xxii. 18.) Al the ends of the world shall remember, and turn unto the Lord, and all the kindreds of the nations shall worship before him. (Psal. xxii. 27.) He will swallow up death in victory, and he will wipe away tears from all faces. (Isai. xxv. 8.) Every knee shall bow, and every tongue shall swear, not that they should be justly condemned, but that in the Lord they have righteousness and strength. (Isai. xlv. 23, 24.)

2. Rom. v. 20. For as by the disobedience of one, many were made sinners, so by the obedience of one many shall be made righteous.' These words you assert, (and this is all, for you give no proof) simply teach, that provision is made for all men. But does not the text say, shall be made righteous? And therefore, does it not show, what Christ will actually accomplish, rather than what he is able, or has the means of

[ocr errors]

accomplishing? Observe, it does not say, as by the disobedience of one, many were made sinners, so by the obedience of one, provision is made for the righteousness of many; but it says, that many shall be made righteous. As though sensible that something more than a provision of salvation is taught, in these words, in order to evade their force, you declare, it is not said that all mankin be made righteous.' Now sir, if the word many, does not mean all mankind in the last clause of the text, it cannot in the first. Consequently, according to your explanation, all mankind did not die in Adam.

Not only so, provision cannot be made, as you admit for all, for many is the word used to express the number, for whom, what you call the 'provision,' was made. Besides, the word here rendered many, according to Parkhurst, means the whole bulk of mankind, and is equivalent to (pantas anthropous) all men, in verses 12, 18. Therefore, your declaration, that there is nothing said in the text, of all mankind being made righteous, is far from the truth, as the east is from the west.

Your attempt to rescue this text from my hands, on the authority of my statement, that the believer of to-day, may be the infidel of to-morrow, is a failure for three reasons:

1. It applies language, which I used with respect to men in this world, where all is imperfection, to their final state, where they will be freed from all sin and imperfection. And surely, nothing can be more unfair.

2. You deny that statement; and therefore ac

« 上一頁繼續 »