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faith and practice, the right of private spoke, with power and efficiency, the judgment, and the rejection of all hu- truths of the gospel ; and, along with man creeds and articles. When we your high-minded brethren in the peruse the valued writings of these ministry, were ready to peril, and, if gifted men, when we dwell on the need were, to lose all earthly possesrecords of their piety, philanthropy, sions, rather than keep back what you and benevolence, or reflect on their believed to be the counsel of God. singular self-sacrifice, and their devo- And, with pride and pleasure, we action to the cause of true and uncor- knowledge that we are attached to rupted Christianity, we acknowledge you, because you have, by precept and our gratitude to those who employed example, inculcated a charity as exthe art of the painter to continue, as tensive as humanity, a love as boundit were, their presence among us; and, less as creation, a piety characterized persuaded that our successors and pos- by wisdom no less than by warmth, terity will regard you with similar and have ever been the true helper of feelings and emotions, we are desirous our joys, by unceasing endeavours to to preserve your likeness for their gra- bind us to God, and to strengthen the tification.
ties that unite us to our families and “ In doing this, we testify our re- to mankind.” spect for one who has obtained his To which Dr. DRUMMOND made the influence by no subjugation of our following understandings through the agency of terror, that overwhelming weapon of "My esteemed and beloved Friends, coarse intellects and unfeeling hearts; -I accept, with pride and gratitude, who, in seeking to break the chains these expressive testimonials of your that have been fastened on men's kindness. To be united, as a minister minds, has been careful to avoid the of the gospel, with a society holding imposition of others in their stead; such principles as those to which your who has been solicitous to enlighten address gives utterance, and to which our understandings and warm our you are well known to be devotedly hearts by gospel views of all the sub; attached, I deem one of the greatest jects
which inost deeply concern and blessings to be participated in this interest mankind; and, whilst strug- state of trial. With you I enjoy, and gling for the diffusion of momentous have for many years enjoyed, that pertruths, and naturally anxious that his fect freedom of mind which is the own views should be fairly weighed birthright of Christians, and which and considered, has ever impressed on delights to expatiate in the wide field us and advocated the duty and neces- of religious inquiry, untrammelled by sity of free investigation, and the un- creeds
and articles of human device, qualified rights of conscience. Cold, which, to the freeborn' in spirit, are indeed, would be the heart, and dull more galling than shackles of brass or the understanding, that could fail to fetters of iron. be warmed and enlightened by your "To myself,considered individually, admirable discourses on the Attributes this picture, as you remark, can be of of God,--the Might, the Majesty, and little value ; but, as a testimonial of the Infinite Benignity of the Universal your approbation of the religious tenets Father, -on the true Dignity, and of which I am the humble advocate, Glory of his Son, our Lord and Sa- and in connection with those who are viour Jesus Christ,
,-on the Operation endeared to me by the most tender and Agency of the Holy Spirit, the and endearing relations, it is of the Spirit of God, -on our Duty to our highest. My children, whose excelFellow-men and to ourselves,- our lent mother is leading them in a Duties, Responsibilities, Immortal path in which I hope they will contiDestiny, and Hopes.
nue to progress as long as they live, “ We, in like manner, testify our will learn to prize it as a memorial of admiration of your sincerity and de- your kindness, when he whom it revotion in the cause of man's mental, presents shall be seen no more. It moral, and spiritual advancement, and may serve them as a memento to of your supreme and invincible love of keep the instruction of their father, truth, under the influence of which you and 'forsake not the law of their frankly, directly, and fearlessly, and mother.' with simplicity and godly sincerity, " In speaking of the pastors of side them, the host of those who dare “ It has often been a subject of re- us to the comparison may 'hide their proach to our religious society, that diminished heads.' And whence is our numbers are so few when com- the difference? Do we affirm that pared with those of other religious the pastors of our congregations were, societies. Such reproach comes
Strand-street and Eustace-street con- have yet to be informed, what names gregations in bygone times, you only of the various religious societies in do justice to their memory: Few de- this island, whose bond of union is the nominations, as you truly observe, can Westminster Confession, can be prorefer to a succession of pastors more duced from their presbyteries, synods, highly gifted, or more richly endowed and general assemblies united, worthy with the Christian virtues ; and as- of being compared with those which suredly, in the opinion of every wise you have enumerated. They form a and good man, virtue is, in every so- glorious constellation in our firmaciety, a more honourable distinction ment of Christian theology; and, bethan number.
with by the original constitution of their a bad grace from those who are them- minds, more richly gifted than others, selves but a very little flock, when more industrious students, more dilicompared with the multitudes who gent in the discharge of their minisare still unconverted, with Jews, Ma- terial duties? Far from it : we make homedans, Heathens, and the thou- no such assertions. We freely admit, sands and tens of thousands in that, in the synods and assemblies, to Christendom whom they brand as the which allusion has been made, there non-elect, and whom they exclude must have been many men of great from what they term the Covenanted attainments and respectable scholarmercies of God. We have never un- ship, but they were slaves-slaves to derstood that Truth despises the few, their confession of faith-slaves to the and courts alliance only with the many. unhallowed dogmas of Calvin ; the We learn, from the highest authority, brand of Calvin was on their souls, it that 'strait is the gate and narrow had seared their conscience as with is the way which · leadeth unto life, red-hot iron. The faculties of their and few there be that find it ;' and minds were crippled and distorted by that 'wide is the gate and broad the their creeds, and by the very frame of way that leadeth to destruction, and their religious institution they were many there be who go in thereat.' precluded from the free exercise of We, therefore, prefer the narrow way, thought. They dared not expatiate which we believe to be the way of beyond a prescribed limit. À sorrighteousness and peace, though fre- cerer's circle was drawn around them, quented by only a few, to the broad and over it they were forbidden to highway leading to the crowded halls, plant a foot, lest they should be ignowhere declamation roars and bigotry miniously driven back as heretics
and sits enthroned, muttering her spells unbelievers. They were ordered to and issuing her denunciations. It we vilify the nature which it should be cannot boast of our numbers, we can, our endeavour to honour and exalt. at least, congratulate ourselves on They could not, or dared not, carry having had among us such men as out any great principle of Evangelical are ornaments to the Christian name, truth, tending to the melioration of men of high intellectual powers, pro- society or the happiness of man. Hapfound erudition, literary taste, critical piness! No; the religion of Calvin judgment,-above all, men of unim- is a religion of terror and hard-heartpeached and unimpeachable honesty, edness, a gloomy and barbarous supercandour, integrity,--men mighty in stition, blasphemous concerning the the Scriptures, and marked by the great Author of Good, libellous conseal of heaven, as worthy to proclaim cerning the nature and the brotherthe glad tidings of salvation. Com- hood of men. parisons are said to be odious; but “ Differing as we must in religious when we are taunted with the paucity opinion from several of our predecesof our number, we may boldly affirm sors, who gave up their livings rather that we know of no society that can than remain in a church which fetrefer to a succession of pastors more tered the conscience, we revere the highly gifted than those to whom your principle on which they acted ; their address calls our attention. Nay, we names deserve to be held in honoured
remembrance for their assertion of forward as a laggard from the rear, Christian freedom--the all-sufficiency he should be seen voluntarily leading of scripture as the rule of faith and in the van. But no slave can be a practice-the right of private judg- proper leader of free men. • If the ment in the interpretation of the Di. blind lead the blind, both must fall vine articles. These are the principles into the ditch. He that would inwhich will regenerate the world ; but struct others should have been well while the Gospel is contemplated instructed himself; and I impute it through the compositions of fallible to the want of proper instruction, to men, as the sun through noxious fogs sheer ignorance, and to the vain preand exhalations, its light is obscured, sumption that the utmost limit, the its energies enfeebled, its beauty and ne plus ultra of religious knowledge, simplicity deformed and lost. has been already reached, that so
“While the pastors of our congre- many errors prevail, and that the pure gations are brought to our grateful and holy light of gospel truth is deremembrance, their lay worthies serted for the dungeon gloom of supershould not be overlooked or forgotten; stitions that long since should have of these we can boast of many who, ceased to exist. to borrow the language of your ad- “ It is melancholy to reflect how dress, were distinguished by the “ aris- little the principles of genuine Protocracy of mind, who adorned the testantism have been understood or liberal professions by their virtues and regarded, and how little progress in talents , who sacrificed place and emo- religious knowledge has been made lument to the dictates of conscience, by the great body of mankind since and achieved the triumph of religious the time of Luther's reformation. The principle over the temptations of the object of most of the new societies into world. Of these, the name of one is which the Christian world was then still fresh and verdant on our minds divided was not to advance but to -that of Dr. Whitley Stokes ; and retard and limit the progress of inwith his will one day be associated quiry. Having burst the chains of the names of some of our contempo- papal tyranny, they were impatient raries, who are ornaments to society, to forge and to rivet other chains, not an honour to their profession, bene- less galling, on the minds of those factors of their species, steady and who were boasting of their emancipaconsistent friends of religious freedom, tion from slavery. Vain boast! The and able advocates of the rights of Pope of Geneva was not less intolerant conscience. It is due to the lay mem- than the Pope of Rome, nor the yoke bers of such Christian societies as ours of Presbyterian Synods and General to state, that from them their pastors Assemblies less oppressive than the are great gainers by the interchange yoke of General Councils ; nor the of thought and the communication of fires which burned Servetus less cruel knowledge. If, in subjects imme- and tormenting than those which diately connected with our profes- consumed Huss and Jerome of Prague. sional studies, we can sometimes What have the General Assembly of impart a ray of light, how amply are Ulster done to promote the cause of we repaid by the knowledge which genuine Christianity? Ask the Court we receive on every subject of science of Chancery; and it will tell us, that and the arts, in which we ask infor- when they failed to dislodge us Unitamation from our lay brethren! And rians from the high and holy position even in religion, and the right inter- which we had assumed as servants of pretation of Scripture, how often might of the One only living and true God, the priesthood be instructed by the by the legitimate weapon of controlaity! Few of the most distinguished versy, they hoped to prevail against divines are worthy of being compared us by the revival of certain intolerant as theologians with Milton, Newton, laws, which, in the lapse of years, and Locke.
their very intolerance had rendered “I hold it to be the duty of a Chris- obsolete ; and, had it not been for the tian minister to keep pace, if he pos- wisdom and justice of the British Lesibly can, with the growing intelligence gislature, in passing the Dissenters' of his age and country. Nay, it Chapels Bill, we should have been should be his ambition to precede, robbed of our houses of worship, of all and, instead of having to be dragged our congregational properties, of the very funds which our benevolent pre- zeal depend very much upon phydecessors had provided, and to which sical constitution, and I am far from some of our living contemporaries supposing that warm and affectionate largely contributed, to be a provision piety is to be found only with the fire for the fatherless children and widows and storm of a heated imagination. of your pastors. Such are the fruits Rapturous exclamations, affected of their Christianity, such the lessons grimace, and disgustingly familiar rethey inculcate on their priest-ridden, petitions of sacred names, that should down-trodden, miserably-deluded, and be uttered only with hallowed respect mystified congregations; and so cer- and veneration, are not the proper tain were they of the success of their outward signs of the inward and nefarious projects, they had actually spiritual grace. Where there is an begun to quarrel about the division of ostentatious exhibition of piety, there the pillage. The enemy said, “I will can be but little of the reality. Shalpursue, I will overtake, I will divide low streams run with the most noisy the spoil ; my desire shall be satisfied murmur. Empty bodies yield the upon them; I will draw my sword, greatest sound.' And some one has my hand shall destroy them. But, said, that the contortions of the Sybil thanks to our Almighty Protector ! may often be seen without the inspiin the houroftheir anticipated triumph, ration.' The service of God is a they were signally defeated, and we reasonable service. It should be based still continue to worship in the houses upon reason and understanding, not on built by our pious ancestors, and raise passions and emotions : the affections the voice of praise and thanksgiving are a most valuable part of the conto our great Deliverer, who hath res- stitution, and should be cherished; for, cued us from the fangs of the destroyer, without them and their kindly play, who brake the jaws of the wicked, life would be insipid ; but unless they and plucked the spoil out of his teeth.' are under the control and guidance of
“ Attached as I am to the great reason and understanding, they lead principles of civil and religious liberty, to dangerous errors both in doctrine it has ever been my desire to create and practice. Devotion may be exand promote the same attachment in cited into fanaticism, zealo kindled my Christian brethren, to the extent into persecution. Our great guide and of my humble ability, and to me it is example was no enthusiast, no devohighly gratifying to meet a response tee, no vilifyer of human nature. He to my advocacy of those principles in reasoned with the intellect, he appealed your kind, affectionate, and only too to man's natural sense of right and partial address. A minister of the wrong, he spake to the feelings and Gospel can receive no higher reward affections, but he did not stir up the upon earth than the approbation of passions to anarchy and insurrection, his religious sentiments by those whom to dethrone that reason which is man's it is his wish and duty to instruct, pro- distinguishing attribute. He was fervided always that such approval is vent in piety, but not fanatical, nor gained by no unworthy act, by no flat- fond of vain repetitions, zealous for tery of prejudice, by no fashioning of the glory of his and our Heavenly doctrines to the varying, hour, but Father, but a reprover of the disciples simply by inculcating, with godly sin- who wished to call down fire from cerity, what he believes to be the all. Heaven to consume his enemies. important doctrines of revelation. If “Here let me pause, for I seem to there be aught that can or should ex- have forgotten that I am replying to cite supreme aversion and invincible your address, and not delivering a ser: disgust in the bosom of a Christian, mon. In conclusion, then, my esteemed surely it is sycophancy with hypocrisy and beloved friends and brethren, in the guise of religion.
permit me again to say that I warmly “We have been accused of having reciprocate all your expressions of kind too little warmth in our religion, though and affectionate regard, I prize the occasionally some declare we have picture which you generously bestow too much. It may be admitted, how- as a proof of your friendship to myever, that if we sometimes exhibited self, for the gratification it gives to a little more Christian zeal, it would those who are united to me by the tend to the advancement of our most tender ties, and for all the pleasrighteous cause. But warmth and ing associations with which it is con
DR, BEARD'S DICTIONARY OF THE
nected: let me add, that my gratitude is enhanced by the consideration that my claims, if any, to such a testimonial of your regard, are so dispro- It gives us much pleasure to direct portioned to your estimation of my the attention of our readers to Dr. deserts; but, as I have said, you conferthis honour upon me as an advocate Beard's Dictionary of the Bible, which of those religious principles on which it
we have no doubt will be truly useful
as a book of reference. Dr. Beard has is our greatest earthly happiness to rest, and in support of which we shall already distinguished himself as an best fulfil the great end and design of author and able vindicator of the our Creation."
truths of Christianity, and merits the After Dr. Drummond bad delivered encouragement of the Christian com. his reply, Surgeon Antisell, the secre
munity. The friends who have, on tary, said he was requested by the the cover, recommended his Dictioncommittee to present the Rev. G. A. ary to the non-subscribing PresbyteArmstrong, as colleague of Dr. D. rians of Ireland, being personally with a framed lithograph of the por confidence in his ability to execute the
acquainted with him, have, of course, trait
, on receiving which, he remarked, task which he has marked out for that no portrait was necessary to remind him of Dr. Drummond, as his himself. They cannot be accountable image was indelibly stamped on his for what he may advance on any submind.
ject; but his past services certainly In the evening there was a Soirée warrant them in recommending his at the Northumberland Buildings,
work to the inquirer after information. which was very numerously attended; and at which several enlightened and
ED. I. U. M. benevolent sentiments were impressively brought forward by- -Mitchell, Esq. John Armstrong, Esq. R. Dowden, Esq. Wm. Antisell, Esq. James We understand that the Rev. RoHaughton, Esq. the chairman D. bert E. B. Maclellan has signified his Hutton, Esq. and other speakers. intention of resigning the pastoral These were received by the assemblage charge of the Unitarian Congregawith marked approbation, and the tion at Bridport, on 1st September evening was spent in most delightful next. harmony.
DIED_On the 8th day of February, years, he was a respected Elder of the 1816, Mr. John JOHNSTON, of Thorn- Presbyterian Congregation of Dun. hill, near Dunmurry, in the 24th year murry, and in that capacity he attended of his age. Through life he was dis- several meetings of Synod, about the tinguished by benevolence, integrity, period of the Remonstrant Separation, and public spirit, as a member of so- being one in whom his fellow-worshipciety; and, in his more private rela- pers reposed entire confidence, as the tions, he was eminently gentle, amia- uncompromising friend of gospel truth ble, and kind. For more than thirty and Christian liberty.
It is requested that all communications intended for insertion in the Irish Unitarian Maga. zine will be forwarded not later than the 10th of the ling month (if by post, prepaid), to 28, Rosemary-street, Belfast.