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We have room only to recommend in general anil strong terms the second and third parts of Mr. Fuller's Apology. He takes, in the second part, a brief and sufficient notice of some ofthe Major's falsehoods and misrepresentations, such as his slander of Mr. Thomas, liis assertion that no good convert has been made, and his repeated assertion that the con- . verts are obliged to be supported by the missionaries, his accusing Mr YVard of an impious perversion of the expression of our Cord, that he was come to send fire on the earth, and some other particulars. In answer to the Vindicator, he accumulates a very large mass of evidence of the extreme moral depravity of the Hindoos. He has added some papers furnished to him by a gentleman deeply versed in oriental literature, which afford a striking and indeed disgusting view of the . immoral character of the Hindoo mythology, and the indecency of many of their superstitions rites. Among many other topics very ably discussed in the third
Eart, Mr. Fuller argues at considerable length, and with all is accustomed acuteness, the mixed question of the nature and limits of the duty which persons employed in propagating the gospel owe to the civil magistrate, and of the actual conduct in this respect of the missionaries in Hindostan; he also dispatches, by a few strong paragraphs, all the Major's idle cavils about the miraculous powers of the Apostles, as forming a prohibition of all efforts to spread the gospel by men not. endowed with these powers. The' illiberal exhortations of Dr. Barrow to forbid all but clergymen to be missionaries in the East, are most ably exploded, both by argument, and by the strong fact that no clergymen have been induced to undertake the office. Two important letters are added, the one from Colonel Sandys, the other from Mr. Cunninghame, late assistant judge at Dinagepore, in testimony to the high character of the missionaries, whom the Major has presumed, un- , fortunately and disgracefully for himself, (if he can be further disgraced) to charge with "atrocious falsehood."
Art. XII. A Letter to a Barrister, in Answer to Hints to the Public and the Legislature, on the Nature and Effect of Evangelical Preaching. By Robert Hawker, D. D. Vicar of Charles, Plymouth. 8vo. pp. 50. Price Is. 6d. Williams and Co. 1808. ''■ .
Art. XIII. An Appeal to the Legislature and to the Public; in Answer to the Hints of a Barrister, on the Nature and Effect of Evangelical Preaching. By an Evangelical Preacher. 8vo. pp. 55. Price Is. 6d. Williams and Co. 1808.
Art. XIV. A Defence of the principal Doctrines of Evangelical Religion, in a Letter to "a Barrister;" occasioned by hi» "Hints on the Nature and Effect of Evangelical Preaching." By. a Layman. 8vo. pp. 112. Price 3s. Williams and Co. 180ii.
Art XV, Hints t» the PubRc, and the Legh'ature, on the Nature and Effects of Evangelical Preaching. By a Barrister. Part the First. Second Edition. 8vo. pp. 147. Johnson, 1808. .
rPHAT a pamphleteer so abjectly despicable as the "Barrister," should be honoured with a prompt reply from three respectable writers, is more to the credit we think of their zeal, than of their wisdom. From the attacks of such an enemy, Christianity could only derive new victories. Next to the approbation of the worthy, we should covet the enmity of the vile; nor can we think it a trifling- honour to any system or person, to the cause of truth and the character of itsdefenders, to be insulted by such an individual as this, whose virtue consists in courage, and whose talents in misrepresentation, who has scoffed at the poetry of Cowper, and defamed the reputation of Bunyan, who has held up to scorn the sentiments and phraseology of Isaiah, who in the fervour of his zeal for God and against Mr. Toplady has proved St. Paul to be "an infidel" and "one who cannot believe the Gospel to be true," and hath literally counted the blood of the covenant which cleanseth from all sin an unholy thing, even "the element of" man's "corruption!"—an individual, in short, who has made the Socinianism he worships, and the disguise he wears, unspeakably'disgusting to the intelligent public, and has only to unmask his portentous front in order to receive the indelible consummation of his ignominy. It was almost superfluous, we think, to defend any cause which such an adversary might attack, or to stigmatize any system which such an advocate might defend. The single method to be pursued was to expose htm; and in this view only we are inclined to admij: the claim of these writers to the public gratitude. There are some readers on all subjects, who have neither industry to examine, nor perspicuity to discern, who might admit the. ?! Barrister's" ridiculous charges without thought, who might receive his perversions and garbled extracts without suspicion, and might read his blasphemies without, astonishment; For the sake of such readers, and for the sake of all who would be eager to believe that the doctrine of the "righteous oyer much" tends to licentiousness, we are not sorry for the publication of these sensible and convincing answers.
There was apparently a peculiar propriety in Dr. Hawker's undertaking this task, as the "Barrister" had "endeavoured to blacken his character, as if the magistrate's authority would be incompetent to keep due order iii the metropolis, while his publications were suffered to circulate." (p. 40.) Having calmlv expressed his confidence that "in the parish where the Jast thirty years of" his "life have been spent, none can or will some forward to impeach a line of conduct engaged, for
the most part, in the humble and peaceable, but laborious office of a parochial minister," he proceeds to refute the charges alledged against his sentiments and writings. In answer to the absurd pretence that Evangelical sentiments are a "new religion," Dr. H. appeals to the Scriptures and the established articles of faith; and in answer to the hoarse arid hoary imputation against the tendency of such preaching, he argues demonstratively from its effects. ,
'We he slanderously reported (saith the Apostle,) and tome affirm that we say, let us do evil that good may come. But what doth he immediately add? Whote damnation (saith he) isjuit. These are awful words. You would do well to pause over them.
♦ We contend, sir, and upon the most convincing evidences we prove also, in the lives and conversation of all that are real partakers of grace, that it is a doctrine after godliness. Every thing that is amiable is included in it, as referring to all the great branches of moral and religious practice. And we challenge the world to the strictest scrutiny into the conduct of those who really, and truly, and heartily receive the doctrines of grace, so' as to live under their b'essed influence, whether they are not examples of the heltcvers, in word, in conversation, in charity, in shirk, in faith, in AnrHy.' pp. 12, 13.
The result of such a scrutiny would form an impressive contest with the gross misrepresentations and virulent aspersions of our moral " Barrister." In reference to the calumny, that Dr. Hawker's " Prop against all Despair" encouraged the murderer, "the robber, and the seducer to sin, he.says:
1 Do not fancy, sir, you have hurt me by this attempt to murder my character and reputation. It is yourself, sir, that is most hurt, not me; I really feel sorrow that any man should be such a bubble to .himself, as to fancy himself highly moral, highly conscientious, in keeping the commandments, while defective in the lowest instances of moralitv, and breaking a positive commandment, even where there seemed to be no temptation.' p. 44. , i ... j ,
The manner of Dr. H.'s letter is commendable: he has treated his unworthy reviler with a calm and superior dignity, which becomes the clerical and Christian character, and which belongs to conscious uprightness; a dignity which in a philosopher would be sedately contemptuous, but iiv an r» evangelist is mildly forgiving and solemnly compassionate. . Having considered his defence of evangelical -presetting as gratuitous, we shall not complain that it is incomplete. Neither shall we mention any blemishes in his style ; since it in general surpasses the level which a writer, who studiously adapts himself to an inferior class of society and toa compassof mind not extending much beyond the sentiments and diction of theScriptures, could fairly be expected to maintain.. It was not' necessary, in replying to an opposer of the Christian Faith in its essential tenets, that Dr. H. should state and defend any p«- •
culiar views of it in which lie may differ from other preachers^ and which his slanderer had not the acuteness to discriminate.
The "Appeal to the Legislature," we are authorized by current.report to ascribe to an amiable and promising young writer, the Rev. W. B. Collyer. We congratulate him on the improvement of his taste; he has cast oft' the gaudy and puerile decorations of a spurious rhetoric, and dispatched them, we hope, to that final receptacle of frippery, the "limbo of vanity." His pamphlet has yielded as sincere pleasure; it is not exempt from faults and inaccuracies, the result probably of haste, but it manifests considerable force and keenness of faculty, and is written for the most part in a chaste and classical style. His defence of the Christian doctrines, though too concise, is rational and satisfactory. His vindication of the excellent men whom tire "Barrister" has defamed, is equally zealous and decisive. We shall introduce his quotation from Mr. Burder's Village Sermons, with the comment.
'Sermons, which admonish the inferior classes to " sobriety," to " diligence,'' " to the daily influence of love to God, and love to man"; addresses, which caution the poor against profaneness, against cruelty against open vices, and against the indulgence of even corrupt thoughts: let common sense determine whether such preaching and such publications deserve to be exhibited as subversive of morals, and as sources of depravity. I Will produce but one other example.
"We are to live righteously in respect of our neighbours; to give every one his due; to honour all men; and do the duty of our stations whether to our superiors, inferiors, or equals. The New Testament is full of excellent directions, as to relative duties. The apostles largely, teach us the duties of husbands' and wives, parents and children, masters, servants and subjects. A true christian will study his Bible with this view; and iu every relation of life he will endeavour to conform himself to it; and he that pretends to religion, luitnout this, is a mere hi/ftocrite." (Vol. IV*. Serm. I. p. S.) I a.k, can morality be more plainly inculcated, or more strongly enforced on the poor and ignorant than in this passage? It was impossible for the Barrister to read the Village Sermons without finding these, and many otner evidences, that their writer labours 10 serve the cause of holiness: it is evident that he has read them from his frequent, and designed y . mut lated quotations fr.m them. I ask, what is the spirit which could lead him to su: press such passages as these, knowing them to be there? to separate sentences from their connection, in order to put a forced and a false construction upon them? and to decry a work and defame a character,, in high esteem with the religious public? I will not name the moti> e. I will not defile my pages with the appellation, which a conduct so illiberal and so dishonourable merits—but the Public will feel it, and they cannot fail to regard it at once with contempt and with execration.' pp. 21, 22.
Mr. C. reprobates with just indignation the ." Barrister's" attack on the memory of the pious and ingenious Bunyan, whom he has represented generally as •" a premature example of coarse profaneness and .vulgar debauchery," and derided under the name of " the tinker /" It is some consolation to he 'cbnvitfcM that we have now seen' human nature in-its very basest degradation; in -slander and scurrility it eari desettitfrtfo lower. To have trampled on' the inisiiflied characters of the living, in defiance or all justice and decency, .wals.an eifert of audacity,, which startled and disgusted us. But' to have violated the sanctity of the tomb, to have dishonoured, those relics which have been-canonized in successive ages by the veneration of the wise and the gratitude of the pious, evinces such , a combination of ferocity and meanness, suc.li an epitome of the hyaena and the worm* as- we are confident will never be exceeded by any future being that may appear in the likeness of man. In this insult on the saintly and.. time-honoured character of Bunyan, there is a folly not inferior to the guilt. That a writer who had to deduce the frequency of crimes from the prevalence of- evangelical sentiments, should suffer, even the name of Banyan to flow from his pen, even the name of a man' whd''was transformed by. the reception of these very sentiments from a monster of vice to a pattern of holiness, is a proof of infatuation scarcely consistent with mental sanity. It was fitting that such should be the penalty 6f sacrilege.,,, that the disturber of the dead should be smitten with fatuity, in his unholy work, and issuing from the desecrated sepulchre, should announce, in the gibberish of his exultation, the punishment of his awful temerity.
The immoral tendency of evangelical preaching has often been sophistically asserted ; it might have been well, if one of these writers had undertaken more philosophically to demonstrate the fallacy of the reasoning, and explain what the tendency must be, from the nature of the principles. But the most obvious and decisive mode of discovering the tendency, is to examine the effect. Not one fact has the "Barrister" attempted to adduce, by way of establishing the pernicious effect of preaching the doctrines of the reformation; he has not even dared to tell, as any honest accuser would have done, "how many of. the unhappy criminals, who have suffered for a-violation of the rights of society and of the laws of their country, ascribed their vices to 'evangelical principles and evangelical preaching."
'« I will'take the liberty, (says our author).of turning his eyes, and the eyes of the Legislature and of the Public, to a matter of fact of sufficient notoriety, and authenticated beyond all dispute, which, so far as it goes, disproves the system, and exhibits evangelical preaching the source of lasting morality.. I recommend to their serious attention the colliers of Kingswood, and the preaching of Mr. Whiteficld and of Mr. Wesley among them. These were men who required not only to be Christianized but humanized. It was a mighty mass of deformity* without shape or order, and it.was moulded in the human form, nay more, it received the impress of the divine image, by the agency of the Holy Spirit, through the preaching of these" laborious ministers. The world will not easily forget the