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policy will be adopted by every Legislature; -when not only the Protestant Dissenters, but every other class of Christians, will enjoy both their religious and civil rights;-and when the State shall wisely avail itself of the abilities and integrity of every citizenand when active exertions in behalf of civil and religious liberty, will be the only test that remains for a free and happy people to give of their zeal for a country which merits their attachment, by blessing every virtuous inhabitant with equal and impartial privileges.
I have the honour to be,
With great esteem and regard,
Very obliged and obedient, humble servant,
MATT. XVI. 18:
Upon this rock I will build my church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.
OUR Saviour having worked many miracles, in testimony of his divine mission, was willing to learn whether these proofs had produced their proper effects, by leading men to conclude that they were certain evidences of his being the Messiah. He asked his disciples, saying, "Whom do men say that I, the Son of Man, am?" He assumes no title above others, but ranks himself with the rest of mankind; with all those who were equally "the sons of men" with himself; and leaves it to them to make the distinction which marked the peculiarity of his character, that they might ascribe it to the works he had performed, and not to any thing naturally superior to others in his person. The answer they made was, 66 Some say that thou art John the Baptist, some Elias, and others Jeremias, or one of the prophets." However mistaken they were with regard to the exact person of Christ, yet every one agreed in looking upon him as a human
being, though endued with authority, and a divine commission. He asks again, "But whom say ye that I am?" They had been his constant attendants, had heard his doctrines and seen his miracles, and were qualified to give a most express answer to this question. Accordingly, Simon Peter answered and said, "Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God," i. e. Thou art the Messiah, the expected Prophet, that was to come into the world. His being "the Son of the living God" was peculiar to him in this respect only, that he was highly favoured in having a divine commission given him; and deserved the title in a more eminent degree than others, on account of his exemplary virtue, and perfect obedience to the will of God; for all good men are in Scripture styled "Son of God," though in a sense inferior to that which is applied to Christ. Peter gave so just a description of the person and character of Christ, that our Lord "answered and said unto him, Blessed art thou, Simon Barjona ; for flesh and blood hath not revealed it unto thee, but my Father, which is in heaven; and I also say unto thee, that thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my CHURCH, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it." That is, Happy are you, that you have formed this opinion of me, and have not taken it up lightly, or from mere report, but have concluded from conviction, that I could not have done the miracles which you have seen, or taught the doctrine you have