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“ making 'many books there is no end, and that "much study" of worldly wisdom" is weariness of “the flesh,” without profit of the spirit. We shall then perceive, that the Bible only will survive the fire that consumes the world, and be opened in heaven, when the light shall shine through every part of it, displaying Christ, its blessed subject, to the ravished eyes of all those who by night, in this dark world, have sought himn in it, under the veil of its sacred and adorable mysteries. Experience will then convince us, that Scripture knowledge only lasts beyond the grave, and opens a passage through the waters of death, into the promised land, conducting us to the gates of the Jerusalem above, where is the throne of eternal judgement. Before that throne, sir, you, and I, and all of us, must shortly stand; and there must the secrets of all our hearts be revealed, and laid open, before heaven and earth assembled. And then will it be kuown, what were our motives in preaching, and yours in writing. As to all you have said against us, may God forgive you, as I am sure we do, for endeavouring greatly to injure the characters and reputations of men, who know not that ever they have offended you, or any one else! And if, in the foregoing pages, there is any misrepresentation or aggravation, it has slipt me unwittingly, and I am sorry for it.
And now, my younger brethren of the university, you see what there is to be said against us; and your candour will not pass sentence of condemnation, without reading what is said for us. If you find reason to do it then, we submit. The author of the
pamphlet we have been considering talks of our proselyting and seducing you. We want not to proselyte you to any sect or party; for we never design to constitute a sect or party; but, as members of the church, subjects to the king, and sons of the university, we desire to spend our lives in their service; continuing steadfast and unmoveable, in the stations allotted us. And we hope there is no harm in wishing that you may do the same, living in due subordination and humble obedience to your tutors and governors in this place ; for the prosperity of which all must pray, that ever pray for the peace of Jerusalem. They cannot stand separate, and can only fall together. May you so employ the calm
peace and quietness you enjoy in this happy retirement, that you may be able, when you launch forth into the world, to weather all the storms of infidelity, heresy, schism, and sensuality, those four winds, that strive for the mastery upon that troubled sea! That so, wherever you are sent to preach the Gospel, and wage war with the enemies of man's salvation, your piety may adorn the church, and your learning do honour to the university. If there is any man, into whom we have inculcated principles contrary to these, let him stand forth, and declare it. But if to inculcate these be to seduce you then we do verily own qurselves to be most exceedingly guilty.
I THOUGHT I had done here; but find myself obliged to take some notice of the reverend Mr. Heathcote, who (as it should seem by an advertisement of his, in capitals) has entirely overthrown Mr. Hutchinson. Upon looking into his book, I find he has indeed made quotations from him. Several of them contain great and important truths, against which Mr. Heathcote has sạid nothing. Some are mangled and misrepresented, as the reader may see, if he thinks it worth his while to turn to and compare them. And a few more passages are quoted for the severity of the expressions in them. But, in order to judge of their propriety or impropriety, it is necessary to know who are the persons spoken of, what is the nature and quality of the crimes charged upon them, and what the strength of the evidence that supports the charge. If, when these circumstances are duly weighed, they appear to be unjustifiable, we defend them not. This is a sufficient answer to all that is advanced by Mr. Heathcote. Though, upon second thoughts, it may not be amiss, just to give the reader a specimen of the manner in which he uses those who are so unhappy as to fall under his displeasure. “We are told,” says he,
“ that Mr. Hutchinson never offended with “his tongue; never spoke with more warmth than
“ was strictly justifiable.” And he refers to the page in the editor's preface', where he is told so. But in that page it stands thus-“That he never “ offended with his tongue, never spoke with more “ warmth than was strictly justifiable, WE SAY NOT.” This method of quoting, together with the phrase cabalistic theologue, and other flowers of rhetoric scattered up and down, and, above all, the paradoxes in his system, demonstrate the truth of an assertion in his title page ;—that he is ASSISTANT PREACHER at Lincoln's Inn.
The reader will be pleased to observe, there is but one edition of that preface.