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prehenfible by us, yet we do not | TO THE EDITORS OF THE Cox. pretend to dispute against,but read. NECTICUT EVANGELICAL MAG. ily own their reality; shall we AZINE. presume to dispute against and de
GENTLEMEN, . ny the doctrine of the facred Trinity, because it contains a mystery THE manuscript which acincomprehensible by us? Let us companies these lines, was comknow of a certainty, that we are pleted in its present form five or lix under sacred and indifpensible ob- months ago. It was written in a ligations to believe and profess what state of great bodily weakness, is so expressly revealed and testi- under which I have languished ma. fied to us, in the word of God, ny years. It is therefore reasona. as this truth is; however much it ble to expect, that judicious transcends our capacity of compre- readers will discover in it plain hending it. Men cannot endure marks of that imbecility of mind, to have their word discredited, re. which is the natural effect of jected, and vilified ; and shall we a reduced and extremely low think that God, who hath magni. state of health. On this account, fied his word above all his name, as well as some others, I have will easily pass by the offence of doubted whether it would be best our disbelieving and denying the to offer it for publication in the truth of his testimony, given Evangelical Magazine. But be us in his word, concerniug this ing now reduced so low, that it matter, because it contains a mys don't appear probable, that I shall tery in it that we are not able to ever be able to do any th ng more comprehend and fathom ? Accor- or better, towards leaving a pub. ding to that, why may we not dif- lic testimony in favor of that globelieve and reje&t the most funda- rious gospel, which is fundamental mental truths of religion, and the to the support of my heart in very being of God? For, “who the near prospect of death and by fearching can find out the Al-eternity, I have concluded to fub mighty unto perfection ?” Let us mit it to your perusal, with liberseriously take heed, left we, who ty to publish it if you think proper. know so little of our own being, I must, however, requelt and exs and that of other finite, limited pect, that you will return the * things, be guilty of vile aud sinful manuscript, in case you should not neglect and disrespect to the tefti. direct it to be inserted in the Magmony, given us in the word, of azine ; as I have no legible copy the being of the infinite God, by of it, and wish if it shouid not be disbelieving and denying this doc printed, to leave it with my chil. trine of the holy Trinity ; because dren. it contains in it a mystery, un. Praying that you may have all searchable and incomprehensible needful asistance from the great by us.
Head of the church, and great
king, and requesting a remem
brance in your prayers, I subThe Gospel a Do&rine according to scribe myself your cordial friend
Godliness, illuftrated in a series and fellow-servant in the gospel, of numbers, adapted for insertion
SAMUEL CAMP. in a periodical publication. At Ridgbury, Nov. 15, 1800.
The Gospel a do&trine according to | mise,that the principles or opinions, Godlinefs.
which men entertain, have great NUMBER I.
influence on their conduct, and
even on their internal exercises, TN the third verse of the sixth tempers and affections. The Pa
1 chapter of Paul's first epistle gan who believes the existence of to Timothy, is this expression, a number of deities, of different
The doctrine which is according ranks, and some of them intriguing, to godliness.” And by the pre- pashonate and revengeful, lustful ceding context it appears, that and deceitful, may natura!ly be exby this expression'he intended the pected to indulge and cherish feel. fame which he called the doctrine ings, correspondent to these ideas, of God- the doctrine contained and to act accordingly. The Roin his preaching and instructions, man Catholic, who believes the and in the wholesome words of popish doctrine of indulgences, our Lord Jesus Christ that is, will naturally feel, as though he the doctrine of the gospel deliv- might safely commit the fins, for ered by Christ and his apoftiles. which he hath purchased an indul. Hence it appears, that, in Paul's | gence, and of course, commit opinion, the gospel preached by them. Christ and his aposties, is a doc 1 If the gospel, either expressly, trine according to godliness—that or by just and fair construction, the whole constitution or system of diffolves the obligations, or lef. the gospel, inclusive of all its doc- sens the motives to holiness, or trines, precepts and institutions, gives a licence, or holds forth enpromises and threatenings,is noton couragement to neglect religion, ly consistent with, but calculated and indulge in vice and wickedness, and tends to promote real godli- it would seem as though it could ness-true piety, in heart and life. not be a doctrine according to god. Of this highly important truth, liness. But if the contrary to all some illustration will be attempted. this is the real truth, and that, in With this view, it may be proper a high degree ; it must then beackto obferve, in general, that godliness nowledged, that the gofpel is inis only a different name for holi- deed a doctrine according to godness, which consists in all right dif- liness, and well adapted to propositions or affections towards all mote it. That this is really the beings, and their proper express case, will, I trust, appear, with fions in words and actions. undeniable evidence, from the fol
Godliness comprises all piety to- lowing particulars, viz. .. wards God, and justice and mer. 1 I. From a view of the characcy towards men, with all the gen- ter of God, which the gospel exuine exercises and expressions, ef. hibits, it appears to be a doctrine fects and fruits thereof, in heart according to godliness. Whilft and life. The godly man is dif- wrong notions of God tend to posed to treat all beings, God and enthusiasm, superstition and idolacreatures, with proper respect, to try ; just ideas concerning him, render to all their due, and to tend to piety in heart and life. contribute all in his power, to the The character of God prefented glory of God, and to the happi- to view in the gospel, is inexprelness of his fellow.creatures. It fibly more amiable and glorious, may be proper, further, to pre.' excellent and perfect, than any, of which the mind of man was termined, that his love of rightever able to form an idea, from eousness, and infinite hatred of fin, any other source ; and propor. shall clearly appear, and be fully cionably, better suited to promote expressed, by his condu&
t by his real piety.
administration. At the same time, · Christ, by affirming that he he is so infinitely benevolent and came not to destroy the law or the wise, gracious and merciful, that prophets, and he and his apostles, he is disposed, and knows how, by frequently citing and appealing and is able, to provide and lay a to the scriptures of the Old Testa foundation for, and actually to acment, have made those scriptures complish, the recovery, forgiveness, 2 part of their testimony, and af- and eternal salvation of finners, in serted the authority of those an- a perfect consistency with supportcient writings, as a revelation from ing the authority and honor of his God. Therefore, the character law-with being and appearing to of God, which arises to view from be infinitely holy and just with the whole of the scriptures, in holding fin in infinite abhorrence, cluding the Old Testament as well and bearing infinite testimony aas the New, may juftly be consid. gainst it in his conduct. . ered as the character of God ex- He is disposed and ready to rehibited in the gospel preached by ceive into favor, the returning pen. Christ and his apostles, or in their itent, thro' Jesus Chrift--to givet doctrine. .
him his holy spirit, to be in him, God, according to the doctrine like a well of water, springing up of Christ and his apostles-accord into everlasting life-to guide him ing to the account and represent. | by his counsel, whilst here, and ations of his character, exhibited | afterwards, to receive him to gloin the scriptures, is an eternal being, ry; and as fully determined to dis. existing from everlasting to ever-play his dreadful wrath, in the just lasting-independent and self-ex. punishment of the finally wicked istent, almighty, omnipresent and and ungodly. omniscient, the searcher of hearts, I That such is the character of infinitely pure and holy—the only God, according to the doctrine of wise impartially and infinitely just the gospel, will be evident to eveand righteous, and inviolably faith-ry attentive, honeft-hearted, and ful and crue, and infinitely good, intelligent reader and searcher of gracious and merciful—the creator the scriptures. How undeniably and preserver, and supreme Lord evident is it, then, that the gospel and rightful sovereign of the uni doth, in this particular, contain a verse the fountain, and source, doctrine according to godliness?, and comprehension of being and How great is the tendency of such of all good.
ideas of God, to inspire the heart According to the doctrine of the of him who entertains them, and gospel, as exhibited in the preach- | believes them to be according to ing of Christ and his apostles, and truth, with the most folemn reverin the whole of divine revelation, ence and awe of God with refGod is pleased with righteousness, pect and esteem--to restrain him and displeased with iniquity-loves from sin, and to excite him to love, the righteous and hates the wicked, and fear, and serve the Lord--to. and is disposed and unalterably de- return to him thro' Jesus Christ,
254 Sin necesarily leads to mifery in this world and the next. [Jan. and to enquire diligently after the government. He now presents knowledge of his will, and care them an opportunity for Ginful pleaf. fully to obey it !
ures, that it may be known they [To be continued.] prefer these to the delights of serv
ing him ; and that they prefer the Sin necessarily leads to mifery in this | pleasures of earth to the joys of world and the next. Heaven. But on this part of the
subje&t we ought to conGder, not [Continued from page 209.]
only that God hath said, they fhall TT was the design of this paper be taken away from these pleasures;
I to illustrate from sundry con- | but also that the course of nature is siderations in the existing nature of removing them continually to their things, of the rational mind, and of long home, where there will be social relations, the certainty that no object for fioful delight. If those who leave the world, in an men, in their departure, could carunholy state, and without such ry with them the objects of their qualifications as are required in the sensual aod unholy gratifications, gospel of Christ, must go to a state and possess and use them in anothof misery. “ The end of these er world as they do here, they things is death." .
might possibly be happy there, in This hath been already illustra. the same manner that they be here; red from the nature of fin, and but death will remove them from from the impoflibility that an un- all these things. The body, which holy and unrenewed finner can be is the instrument of sensual inter. happy, in going to the holy pre- course, must go down unto the fence and place of God.
grave.-Their farms and their But perhaps it may be objected, merchandize their honors, their that unholy men do now find many offices, their possessions, and every pleasures, altho' their supreme de. thing, in which they appear most light be not in the service of God to delight, must be left here. and the duties of religion ; and Their amusements will remain ta therefore they may hope to escape divert thofe, whom they leave to that perfect misery which the scrip- fill the places, which are emptied tures threaten.--I make no doubt on earth by their departure. And but unholy men often plead this to all these things, which are now themselves, as an excuse for quiet their idols, we are assured shall be nefs in an evil way. It is the same consumed at the second coming of as one of the sacred writers men- the son of man..Where can untions. “ because sentence against an holy men, where can the unre. evil work is not executed speedily, newed find their pleasures and therefore the hearts of the children their delights, after they are remoof men are set in them to do evil.” ved from this world? The course
But they ought to consider, that of nature is removing them to although they are now exempted their end, and “the end of these from the extreme of punishment, things is death.” The imagination this is no evidence that it will al- which they have, because the ways be the case. They are now unsanctified are not now overtaken in a state of trial. God is treating with punishment, that they never them in such a manner that it may will be, is altogether founded in be seen they do not chufe him, ignorance it is the illusion of a nor his presence, nor his law and 'deceived heart, and the course of
Sin necesarily leads to mifery in this world and the next. 255
nature is giving them daily evi- , musement or worldly interest, or dence, if they could but see it, an unmolested opportunity to inthat all the words of the Most dulge a sinful with which lays it aHigh shall be fulfilled.
sleep. The considerate finner 2dly. Another of the causes, never approves himself-he always which there is in the nature of condemns himself. It is so in this things, to prove the truth of the life it will be so in death and Apostle's description, that, “the it must be fo in the world to come. end of these things is death" is the In the world to come, those caufes unhappiness which creatures expe- which now impede consideration rience in the convictions of an will all be removed. And no sinevil and a condemning conscience. ner, who considers, either here Although the consciences of evil or there can approve himself for men may often be asleep, it is being opposed to God, his law and scarcely credible that this should al. his government. Standing in the ways be the case. The calls of divine presence, his own conscience earthly pleasure are sometimes dif- will be both a witness and a judge continued-a lassitude of animal against him. He never can ap. nature sometimes destroys the high prove'himself for being opposed, or wish for sensual gratification--and for neglecting the duties which he misfortunes in their persons, or | owes to a God of infinite rectitude, families, or properties, sometimes wisdom and goodness; nor for be. gives a pause for consideration, and ing opposed 10 a law and governthen conscience whispers alarming ment which his own reason must words to the sinful and guilty mind. justify as right. In the world to They will be words creative of mif- come, we have reason to think, ery; for a considerate finner cannot that the powers of conscience will approve himself; and self-disappro- be renovated, or in other words, bation must be misery. As the that the causes which prevent their appetites, through natural causes, operation here, will be removed ; lose their strength ; as curiosity and the finner's punishment will abates ; and as approaching old be, in a great degree, wrought out age furnishes reasons for considera- | by the exercise of his own temper, tion, conscience will begin to speak and the judgment which he paffes more freely. In this period of life, on himself, thus fulfilling the deunless a man be very stupid, he scription of the text, that " the must sometimes think of coming be end of these things is death,” fore his God; and if his conscience 3dly. If it should please God, disappruves, this will be an alarm to place finners in a state of coning thought.- fiction, bereave-nexion with each other in the world ment, lofs and disappointment to come, this must be another will, also, at any period of life, natural four.e of unhappiness and produce the same effects. Hence woe. The greater part of the we commonly see them who are woes, which sinners experience in deeply affiliated, to be considerate, this world, arise from causes in and feel the need of a preparation their own temper and conduct. before they can come peacefully | They afflich themselves, and they into the presence of God. Here afflict each other. They afflix is a natural source for misery to the themselves by their own excessive Gnful. A conscience is p aced appetites and paffions which cannot: in every breast, and it is only .ao l be satisfied ; by their impatience