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been often regarded. But while we earnestty contend for the faith anciently delivered, we ought to remember that even that faith was dolivered for the sake of its living, active, and eternal fruits.
We say that we intend the second volume to have a supreme regard to the practical side of the questions introduced. It will no doubt bo still somewhat controversial. While error, immorality, and impiety are on earth, every good man must, less or more, be a controversialist. Not to be a controversialist is not to be a Christian in such cases. But a controversy for opinions, for abstractions, is only an abuse of the freedom of speech-and of this sort there have been already many thousands too many. Whatever can purify the heart, enlarge the soul, reline the manners, and elovate the aspirations of Christians, we regard as fairly practical. And in order to personal excellence and happiness, there is nothing more direct and potent than a full discharge of relative duties. On these, then, we must labor more and more; for of this species of labor we daily perceive a growing, a rapidly increasing need.
The passion for wealth and power was never more active and impetious in any community than it now appears to be in these United States. The very frame of our government, our constitution, laws, bills of rights, are all occasionally defied, and trodden under foot, and threatened with utter prostration and ruin at the impulse of these passions. Mobs, arson, murder, in order to put down offensive opinions, or to prevent the discussion of them, are now the order of the day; and all opinions are fast becoming offensive which impede, even by the restraints of civil insututions, the passion for wealth and power.
Such, alas! being the facts, the undeniable facts, too well proved already in surrounding society, how, we ask, ought Christians to watch and pray that they may not be abandoned to temptation—that they may be kept pure and unspotted from the vices of this age! To those desirous to make their calling and election sure, we desire to lend a helping hand in the following volume.
A. CAMPBELL. December 6th, 1837.
MORALITY OF CHRISTIANS-N0. I. None but the Author of human nature could have suggested such a moral code as the Christian Scriptures have promulged to the world. The reason is obvious. A perfect and infallible knowledge of the whole constitution of man, as an animal, intellectual, and moral being-of all his relations to that whole universe of which he is a part, is essentially prerequisite to the author of a perfect moral system. For, in our estimation, a perfect moral system is one adapted to hunan nature in all its attitudes and relations to the universe. Now such a knowledge of the human constitution, and of the whole universe, no mere man, however gifted by nature, or cultivated by art, has ever possessed. Therefore, a perfect moral code out of the Bible is not to be expected or found in all the learning and science of the world.
But we need not to assume the peerless endowments of the Author of the Christian moral code, in proof of the superexcellency of the system: for the impress of Omnipotence is not more clearly stamped upon the miracles, nor the attributes of Omniscience more legibly written upon the doctrine, than are infinite purity, wisdom, and benevolence inscribed upon the morality of the Gospel. The Divine excellence of its moral precepts as
VOL. II.-N. S.
loudly proclaim its celestial descent, and as irresistibly command the homage of the heart, as the sublime originality of its communications, and the unparalleled glory of its supernatural and monumental attestations. In one word, its faith, its morality, and ils miracles are, to the eye of the most enlightened reason, equally original, heavenly, and divine.
The moral institutes of the most cultivated and refined lawgivers of the Pagan world were all more or less defective in three respects--they wanted truth, motive, and authority. As it respected truth, the requisitions themselves were sometimes in the nature of things wrong, or were not in harınony with the whole universe; as respected motives, they were not only oftentimes false, but even when true and proper, they were too weak for the strength of human passion; and às respected the lawgivers or authors of those systems, they wanted authority--their jurisdico tion was restricted to the outward actions--they took no cognizance of the fountain whence issue all the actions of men, and had not the poiver to reward and punish in accordance with merit and demerit. These three advantages the Christian system possesses above all others:- The things commanded are in their own nature right and good, because in harmony with the whole universe, as well as with the whole constitution of the individual; in the second place, the inotives are addressed to the whole nature of man, and superadd to the present utility and fitness of things, an augmentation of bliss in the enlargement of his capacities for enjoyment, and in the future elevation of his rank, condition, and circumstances; and in the third place, the supereminent dignity of the Author of the system, and his almighty ability to retribute to every man in accordance with all his thoughts, words, and actions. These elevate the Messiah's code of morals incomparably above all the systems of all men, in all the ages of the world. Compared with the wisdom, simplicity, purity, and systematic harmony of the institutes of Jesus, the systems of the moral sages and the most profound theories of the ethical philosophers of the Pagan nations, are weak, puerile, and inefficient. They are like the feeble and remote twinklings of the most dis. tant stars, in contrast with the bright and glowing effulgence of a midsummer noon.
One might imagine that the genial fruits of such a system in antithesis with those of every other, would commend it to universal acceptance and give it a triumphant power over every rival institution in the world. And so it undoubtedly does, and always will, when clearly understood, cordially embraced, and unreservedly submitted to by those who assume the profession
But of its warmest admirers, alas! how comparatively few perceive and relish the full extent and elevated character of those requisitions of that holiness and purity which it proposes and enacts as essential to the formation of that most splendid and lovely of all human creations-a Christian character! The morality of this age, like its doctrinal views of the New Institution, is far below that standard of Christian excellence propounded by the precepts and example of the Divine Founder of the religion of immortality. Jesus intended that all men should know his disciples, not by the singularity of their professjon, but by the superior purity of their lives the heaven-born excellence of their characters. He intended that they should appear worthy of the renovating hope of the resurrection of the just, as well as to cherish it, and boast of it before the world.
Most unfortunately both for the church and the world, the attention of Christendom has for ages been turned away from the sweet enjoyments of Christianity-its pure, and peaceable, and holy temper--its divine intimacies-its holy communions-its hallowed conversation, and its guileless, spotless innocence of behaviour, to the weak and beggarly elements of speculative, scholastic, and polemic theology.
True, indeed, a corrupt theory will never yield a correct and pure practice. While men are all their lives seeking or getting religion, or hungering and thirsting after excitements, rather than after righteousness and true .holiness, they cannot have better morality or religion than such as we daily witness. Nay, indeed, there is in some systems such a conflict between grace and morality, that the latter is constrained to yield to the former; lest, forsooth, there should even be the appearance of merit, or any indication of the righteousness of law. Many talk as though they feared merit more than they hated sin; and would seem rather to eschew righteousness than to have the trouble of renouncing it...
There is no separating true morality from true religion: they stand in the relation of cause and effect; while they mutually embrace each other as parent and child. There is a species of religion without morality, and a species of morality without religion; but neither of these is the system of Jesus. No tree will produce Christian morality but that tree of heaven which the Lord has planted on earth.
To take a compendious view of this subject is all that we propose; but we intend a highly practical one, An outline of the whole 'subject may be drawn from the following miniature:
There are three objects, and three things respecting each of these objects, which supremely command the Christian's attention; for these three engross the whole subject of religion and morality. The three objects are, God, his neighbor, and himself. The three things in relation to God, are-his being, perfections, and revealed will; and these comprehend the whole of religion. The three things concerning his neighbor, are-his person, his character, and his property, which include the whole subject of morality; and the three things in himself in reference to each of these three objects, are-his heart, his lips, and his hands. The proper direction and government of these three, in reference to these objects, constitute him both a religious and moral being. And in the ratio of his progress in the direction and government of his heart, his lips, and his hands to God, his neighbor, and himself, are his advances in the practice of religion and morality. The perfect Christian is the man of a pure heart, of hallowed lips, and clean hands.
Discussion of Universalism.
MR. SKINNER TO MR. CAMPBELL.
RICHMOND, Va., November 13, 1837. My dear Sir-Your letter No. 12, (11 you have it,) dated September 30th, in answer to mine of August 12th, No. 9, (which you miscall No. 10,) only reached me on Saturday evening, 11th inst., six weeks after its