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mentous interest, there was no necessity of questioning, and cross-questioning, and almost putting them to the torture, to discover their opinions. They felt it to be their duty, their high honor, their ennobling privilege, to let their light shine. They did not believe all opinions either innocent, or equally valuable. They believed that truth was light, and that error was darkness. They believed Unitarianism to be dangerous error, and Orthodoxy to be saving truth. True, too true it is, where first this light was kindled, now is portentous darkness. But the fire from the altar of God, brought hither by sacred hands, has not gone out.

It has been kindled up on other candlesticks, and is now bursting forth on the right hand and on the left, the joy of “ the saints" and the terror of those that know not God.

If our Fathers' creed were erroneous, rectify it. Do not believe, merely because they believed. Such a faith none would more heartily have deplored than the Cottons, and Nortons, and Wilsons of New England's earlier days. Scholars they were, that would yield to few or none of their successors. In acuteness of intellect, classical attainment, and logical precision, the Norton, who, two centuries past, enlightened New England by his learning, and enlivened it with his piety, need not shrink from a comparison with him, who now darkens it with learned doubts and logical inaccuracy. A faith, springing from examination and from a love of the truth, was what those men, who first occupied Boston pulpits, possessed ; and prayed and labored that others, their successors, might evermore possess.

Whether “ their understandings were so debased, their moral sentiments so brutified," whether they possessed "sense or spirit, or knowledge of right and wrong, enough” to distinguish between "a Calvinistic God and the Prince of Hell,” let their children decide.

Still we are not called upon to believe, merely because

our Puritan Fathers believed. Far higher is the obligation of our faith. The ever living Jehovah, our maker and our judge, and not our departed ancestors, has laid us under obligations, which we cannot shake off, to know and believe the truth. If the Bible be a fable, we are under obligation to the God who gave us reason, to reject it. If Orthodoxy be a wrong interpretation of that sacred volume, let those who know this interpretation to be wrong, reject this interpretation ; but let them give in its stead the right interpretation, fully, distinctly. Professing to believe the Bible to contain a revelation from heaven, can you so impugn the character of its author, as to suppose he has given us an enigmatical book to tantalize us? Tell us, then, fearlessly and fully, what you believe and why you believe it ; what you disbelieve and why you disbelieve it. Be at least as frank as Dr. Priestley and Mr. Belsham, "the most illustrious advocates of English Unitarianism.” Do not fear the reproach of a name. If Universalism be true, glory in the term Universalist. Singularity is not a reproach, it may be an honor; it is not a fault, it may be a virtue. Galileo and Columbus were once ridiculed for their opinions. Who ridicules them now? The Huguenots, Methodists, and Puritans, by the excellence and sanctity of their lives, have rendered honorable, epithets not so intended.* Liberal Christians surely, will not shrink from the honorable task of enlightening a benighted community. Even if you are to perish in the attempt, fear not. Whose fall would be more glorious than that of the martyr of truth? Whose reward more certain ? Cranmer and Latimer and Ridley, those

* I venture to predict that, before this century closes, “ the mummers” of Geneva will be a more honorable distinction throughout Europe, than the strange misnomer, which the Venerable Company wish to attach to themselves, Evangeliques Reformes. It is characteristic of Unitarianism, in all latitudes, to be exceedingly solicitous of “a good name.” This, like fame, followed, is lost; deserved, but disregarded, is secured.

worthies of the English Church, did not shrink from a chariot of flame to bear them home to glory.

If Unitarianism be, as its advocates aver, a serene and lofty eminence, on which the human mind, liberated from error, "redeemed, regenerated and disenthralled," walks abroad in the image of its Maker, in the conscious dignity of an immortal and purified intelligence,

Despicere unde queat alios, passimque videre

Errantes, with outstretched hand and suppliant voice, we earnestly entreat admission to this light, to be elevated to this summit. We think the optic nerve of our moral eye can bear any truth, which is of so pure and perfect a nature. We desire to put an instant termination to our pupilage, to be held under Calvinistic bondage no longer. Our minority we wish ended at once. We will assume

the manly gown" forthwith, if it can thus be afforded from the Unitarian wardrobe. Surely Unitarians will not imprison or keep back for their individual benefit, any part or portion of so inestimable a trust, held, not for themselves, but for the race. Freely ye have received, freely give,” is a plain directory in circumstances by them considered so peculiar and favorable. Henceforth we look for the distinct utterance of the whole truth, for it is well known, not only to the bench and the bar, but to minds of any reflection, that a part of the truth is often an untruth.

Before closing these Letters, I have some important and practical questions to propose, which I trust you, my dear sir, and the readers generally, will not think out of place or inopportune. Do you really believe that Christ and his apostles taught Unitarianism? If so, which of the many theories, embraced under that most comprehensive name, did they teach? Is Christ " a fallible and peccable man,” or higher than the highest archangel, the instrumental

creator of these heavens and this earth, the governor of the moral universe, subordinate only to the Eternal, himself almost divine ? Or does he occupy an intermediate place between these vast extremes ? Did Christ, as Logos, exist

with the Father before the world was"? Was he supernaturally begotten of the Virgin Mary, or is this “ a fiction of oriental mythology"?* Had Christ, in any view of his character, a proper personal pre-existence before he was born at Bethlehem ? If he had, is Christ merely a man? If he had not, how was he “ with the Father before the world was"? How was he “ the root of David”? How “did God create the worlds by him"? What did Christ and the apostles teach as to man's native character? What is regeneration ? What is the everlasting state of the finally impenitent? Or, in other words, what is the condition of those impenitent at the day of judgment? Is there an endless hell for those on the left hand, as surely, as there is an endless heaven for those on the right ? Will those who go away into everlasting punishment “ with the devil and his angels,” return to purity and to blessedness ?—These questions, though often proposed, cannot be too often considered by those, who will ere long, and may shortly, be summoned hence to return no more, but to hear from the lips of their Judge the welcome invitation"

come, ye blessed,” or the irreversible doom, “depart, ye cursed."

I assume, in the following questions, as an indisputable fact, that to reason from moral effects to moral causes, is a legitimate mode of ratiocination. I know full well that it is sometimes a delicate process, and requires a skilful hand. This is not the place to enter into a consideration of the qualifications, distinctions and limitations requisite

* May we be permitted to ask the Unitarian biblical critics, what part of the introduction of Matthew and Luke's gospels they receive, and what part they reject ?

to the proper understanding of this whole subject. Nor is it at all necessary. Broad, palpable, blazing distinctions often force a reluctant acknowledgment from unwilling prejudice itself. A man, having the sense of sight, with his eyes open, unbandaged, unobstructed, cannot easily mistake the brightness of uneclipsed noonday for the darkness of midnight.

I ask, then, has Unitarianism in any shape, within the last three hundred years, either broken off from the Roman Catholic church, or christianized a before unchristian people ? Has not Unitarianism invariably come in after reformation—after Orthodoxy ? Has it, for that period, taken the lead in any one great movement for the reformation of the world? But is it so, that real, primitive, purified Christianity, the Christianity of Paul and Peter, is so backward and diffident, that it only comes in as a sedative to prevent an over-zealous activity in the friends of man ? a sort of make-weight in the moral scales ? or, in other words, follows in the rear of an “exclusive," ' hot-headed, intolerant Orthodoxy?

Are these things so? Is the religion of Christ in its purity, of secondary and subsidiary power only in revolutionising the world, and purifying, and elevating, and sanctifying it ? It was not so OF OLD. Either Christianity has lost its primitive energies, or Unitarianism is not Christianity. But the salt of heaven has not lost its savour. Declensions in Orthodox Churches are no new thing, from the Seven Churches of Asia, to the Genevan and the Boston Churches. Christianity in its purity, is mighty. Weak in numbers, wealth, and intellect, upheld only by those accounted “the filth and the off-scouring of all things," it is still irresistible in power, for by prayer and faith, it takes hold on the arm of Omnipotence, and the world feels its influence. It conceives, attempts, accomplishes, great things. When did Unitarian

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