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sons unite and harmonize in the support of their doctrine The truth is, all their strong reasons are false, and being false, cannot be made to appear consistent by any subtle reasonings, nor by any false glosses upon particular passages of Scripture. So that the plain and palpable incon sistency of the scheme of universal salvation, is a plain demonstration of its falsehood.

4. If Universalism be founded upon the false and inconsistent principles, that have been mentioned ; then it leads to the denial of all the fundamental principles and doctrines of the gospel. Accordingly we find, that Universalists do deny the doctrine of personal election, the doctrine of regeneration, the doctrine of conditions of salvation, and the doctrine of final separation of the righteous from the wicked, at the general judgment. These are certainly the cardinal doctrines of the gospel, and when these are denied, who can see that there is any truth or importance in the gospel ? Men are as certain of future and eternal happiness, without it, as with it. Though Universalists would not be pleased to be called Deists, yet they are Deists, to all intents and purposes ; and their doctrine leads directly to Deism, and the preaching of it makes more Deists, than Universalists, among their more discerning hearers. Their error is a great and essential error, because it tends to prevent men from performing the conditions, upon which the salvation of their souls is absolutely suspended. It assures them, that they need not repent, nor believe in Christ, nor exercise one holy or gracious affection, in order to escape the wrath to come, and enjoy everlasting life. They cannot fail of eternal happiness, let them say, or feel, or act as they will. Can there be a more licentious and dangerous doctrine than this? I know they flatly deny this tendency. But their denial evinces their inconsistency, absurdity and delusion.

5. It appears from what has been said, that those who preach the false and dangerous doctrine of universal salvation, are extremely criminal. Their criminality is very great, whether they do, or do not know, that their doctrine is false. If they do not know that their doctrine is false, it is because they are voluntarily ignorant. If they did but impartially attend to the dictates of reason and Scripture, they would know, that their doctrine is false. But if they do know that their doctrine is false, then they are tenfold more criminal in propagating it, and leading precious and immortal souls to endless perdition They are severely condemned in Scripture, as strength ening the hands of the wicked, and making sad the hearts of the righteous. They are represented as under strong delusion, that they should believe a lie, that they might be damned. But where is the great criminality of preach ing this doctrine, if it did not expose them to any temporal, or eternal punishment; and why should such false teachers be ranked among the most vile and guilty characters, described and condemned in the Bible ? Or why should the prophets, and Christ, and the apostles, have been so bitterly and mortally opposed for preaching this doctrine, as the Universalists assert, that they did preach it ? I never heard them answer this question, either in their conversation, or preaching, or publications, and I have read the writings of their most celebrated laymen and clergymen. The question must be gravelling and unanswerable, and among other things proves their doctrines to be false and dangerous.

6. If Universalists are highly criminal for teaching the false and dangerous doctrine of universal salvation, then it is unwise and criminal for any to go and hear them spread their fatal errors and corruptions. The wisest of men gives this wise and important caution against hearing false and corrupting teachers.

6. Cease, my son, to hear the instruction that causeth thee to err from the words of knowledge." It is very wrong for any to gratify an itching ear and vain curiosity, at the risk of fatal deception. And though some may imagine, that they are out of the reach of danger by hearing the sophistry of seducers; yet their example may lead others to hear and believe a lie to their eternal ruin. There is in every human heart a prepossession and bias towards error, and the most fatal error. It is unwise for any to trust in their own hearts, which are deceitful above all things, and presume upon their knowledge and integrity to discover and reject errors plausibly represented, and in their own nature agreeable to the depravity of the heart.

7. This subject shows the importance of understanding, and being firmly established in the first principles of the oracles of God.' Detached passages of Scripture can be of but little service in contending with Universalists, or any other heretics, without the knowledge of first principles, according to which all passages are to be explained. The knowledge of the first principles of all religion, will enable any persons to discover, to reject, and to refute all heretics. Nothing but sound principles are sufficient to refute unsound and false principles. It was the knowledge of the first principles of the gospel, that armed the apostles against all the errors, delusion, and sophistry of Jews and Greeks, and enabled them to pull down the strong holds of the arch deceiver, and all his deluded followers. And all who enjoy the gospel, need the same impregnable armor of the first and fundamental principles of religious truth. We ought to think, while we read the Bible, and compare all its declarations, promises, and threatenings, with some true and infallible principle. Those who neglect to take this course, will always be liable to be carried away with every wind of doctrine, and make shipwreck of their faith, and to be drowned in perdition.

PUBLISHED BY THE

AMERICAN DOCTRINAL TRACT SOCIETY.

PERKINS & MARVIN, AGENTS,
Depository, 114, Washington Street, Boston.

and Scripture, they would know, that their doctrine is false. But if they do know that their doctrine is false, then they are tenfold more criminal in propagating it, and leading precious and immortal souls to endless perdition They are severely condemned in Scripture, as strength ening the hands of the wicked, and making sad the hearts of the righteous. They are represented as under strong delusion, that they should believe a lie, that they might be damned. But where is the great criminality of preach ing this doctrine, if it did not expose them to any temporal, or eternal punishment; and why should such false teachers be ranked among the most vile and guilty characters, described and condemned in the Bible ? Or why should the prophets, and Christ, and the apostles, have been so bitterly and mortally opposed for preaching this doctrine, as the Universalists assert, that they did preach it ? I never heard them answer this question, either in their conversation, or preaching, or publications, and I have read the writings of their most celebrated laymen and clergymen. The question must be gravelling and unanswerable, and among other things proves their doctrines to be false and dangerous.

6. If Universalists are highly criminal for teaching the false and dangerous doctrine of universal salvation, then it is unwise and criminal for any to go and hear them spread their fatal errors and corruptions. The wisest of men gives this wise and important caution against hearing false and corrupting teachers. Cease, my son, to hear the instruction that causeth thee to err from the words of knowledge." It is very wrong for any to gratify an itching ear and vain curiosity, at the risk of fatal deception. And though some may imagine, that they are out of the reach of danger by hearing the sophistry of seducers; yet their example may lead others to hear and believe a lie to their eternal ruin. There is in every human heart a prepossession and bias towards error, and the most fatal error. It is unwise for any to trust in their own hearts, which are deceitful above all things, and presume upon

their knowledge and integrity to discover and reject errors plausibly represented, and in their own nature agreeable to the depravity of the heart.

7. This subject shows the importance of understanding,

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and being firmly established in the first principles of the oracles of God. Detached passages of Scripture can be of but little service in contending with Universalists, or any other heretics, without the knowledge of first principles, according to which all passages are to be explained. The knowledge of the first principles of all religion, will enable any persons to discover, to reject, and to refute all heretics. Nothing but sound principles are sufficient to refute unsound and false principles. It was the knowledge of the first principles of the gospel, that armed the apostles against all the errors, delusion, and sophistry of Jews and Greeks, and enabled them to pull down the strong holds of the arch deceiver, and all his deluded followers. And all who enjoy the gospel, need the same impregnable armor of the first and fundamental principles of religious truth. We ought to think, while we read the Bible, and compare all its declarations, promises, and threatenings, with some true and infallible principle. Those who neglect to take this course, will always be liable to be carried away with every wind of doctrine, and make shipwreck of their faith, and to be drowned in perdition.

PUBLISHED BY THE

AMERICAN DOCTRINAL TRACT SOCIETY.

PERKINS & MARVIN, AGENTS,
Depository, 114, Washington Street, Boston.

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