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ly implying no more than an honest torious cause of our Justification, and principle ; others, merely an assent to that Faith only is the mean by which we the truth of Christianity; while others apprehend, and apply, and become inter. maintain that it justifies not as it unites ested in his merits for this Justification.
to Christ, or is the instrument (p. 199.) In proof and illustration of ihrough which we apply his merits to this position, he enters upon an analysis ourselves; but as it implies true holi. of the Homily on Justification, which is ness in the nature of it, and includes known to have been written by Cran. the other evangelical graces as consti- mer, and is allowed by Dr. Hey to extuent parts of it. But that the Church press “these things fully and clearly,” means by justifying faith more than a and wherein Bp. Horsley testifies cinese mere assent to the truth of Christianity doctrines are delivered with admirable appears, the author says, from the defi- perspicuity and precision ;'! quoting nition just quoted; and that she consi. also other Articles and Homilies, as ders this faith as perfectly distinct from well as the writings of many of the Relove and obedience, and yet always pro- formers, to which references have been ductive of them, he says, is equally already made. He likewise refers to clear, because she teaches that they pro. Bp. Horsley as testifying that man is ceed from and follow it.
BY FAITH, WITHOUT Mr. Overton confirms these senti. WORKS OF THE LAW, WAS THE UNIFORM ments from various parts of the Homi- DOCTRINE OF THE FIRST REFORMERS,' lies, from the writings of Cranmer and and to Bp. Warburton, as asserting that Nowell, from the Confession of the Bi- the redemption of mankind by Christ, shops and Martyrs, and from the Augs- "together with its consequent doctrine burgh Confession; and, as to the man- of JUSTIFICATION BY FAITH ALONE, NER in which Faith is directly concern the great gospel-principles on ed in our justification), he also quotes which PROTESTANTISM was founded.” the Homilies, Nowell, Bp. Jewell, and (p. 207.) Hooker, to shew that they regarded it Mr. Overton proceeds to shew, from
" mean,” the “instrument,” the concessions of the persons whom he whereby we lay hold of, and are united opposes, that they cannot reconcile all to Christ.
this with their notions upon the subject. He then produces similar quotations with respect to the boasted adherence to prove, in opposition to Mr. Ludlam, of his opponents to the doctrine of the that our Church maintains the reality Church, he endeavours to point out the of a spiritual union between Christ and absurdity of this pretension in those true Christians, and asks how these who hold the Socinian notion of two jussentiments of the Church, concerning tifications, and that all the justification the nature and province of Justifying attainable in this world is synonymous Faith, can be reconciled with their ideas to baptism, or our admission into the on the subject, who are confident we profession of Christianity; and, having may be good Christians, and sure of quoted Dr. Carr, Mr. Clapham, Dr. heaven, whatever be our persuasions; Hey, Mr. Daubeny, Mr. Nelson, Mr. or who represent this faith as consisting Fellowes, and Mr. Benson, as explicitly only in an honest principle, or in a bar. including our own works in the matter ren assent to Christianity, or as imply- of justification before God, he asks, ing both belief and practice, and as jus.
How can any persons, endowed with ordi. cifying only as it thus comprehends obe
nary integrity and discernment, who use this dience in its nature. (p. 198.)
language, pretend to agree with the standard “ But our principal inquiry on this writings of our Church? If it is not clear from head,” says the author, “yet remains; the above extracts, that all MERIT, DESERT, namely, through what MEANS, or on
and WORTHINESS, on the part of man, in all what account, we obtain Justification senses, is there excluded, in respect to his
acceptance with God, there is certainly no before God.” (p. 198.) And here he meaning in words. (p. 212.) argues from the XIth Article, that the plain doctrine of the Church on this He further affirms, that a large class point is, that “ Christ only is the meri. of these professed adherents to our Ar
ticles, depart from them so widely as But we must not here repeat the whole even to teach the doctrine of Justifica- body of her evidence to the same purport, tion by Works; and to maintain, that Enough must have been said to convince faith in the merits of Christ supplies the vourable ground of our opponents is not fairly
all impartial judges, that even this most fadefects of our obedience; and in proof of tenable; and that on this most important of all this he refers to many of the writers al. doctrines, they do not, as they would pretend, ready mentioned.
teach, as it is taught in the standard writings After stating the doctrine of the most
of our Church, and was taught by our Reformorthodox of these divines, at their most
Whether regard is had to the nature of jusorthodox moments, to be that we are tification, to the nature and province of justifyjustified by faith and good works together, ing faith, or to the means by which justiticaor, as they express it, that faith and tion is obtained, their deviation from ibis acgood works are the conditions of our knowledged standard, and our strict adherance justification, and quoting upon this sub- sition tberefore, we conceive, is again estab
to it, are thus equally conspicuous.ject, Mr. Gray, Mr. Foley, Mr. Dau- lished on a double basis ; and that of our oppo. beny, and his great oracle, Bp. Buil, nents doubly overthrown. But whether our Mr. O. thus closes this important inqui- premises warrant this conclusion; or whether, ry:
at any rate, our claim to Churchmanship on
this point is not the best founded of the two, But is this indeed the doctrine of our let every competent judge decide. (p. 218, Church ? Is this language congenial with what 219.) we have produced from ber writings on the subject ? Surely it must require no ordinary
CHAP. VII. courage to maintain this. If her doctrine in. deed is, that we are thus justified by faith and
The author pursues his investiga. good works; or that faith and good works are
tion in respect to the doctrine of good thus the conditions of justification, is it not very WORKS, or Christian morality, vindistrange that in none of her express writings Cates the tenets of bis friends on this on the subject she should have affirmed this head, which is one, he remarks, on And is there a single expression that sounds which they are supposed to be most like it, or that can be fairly consirued into it, either in ber Articles or Homilies on the vulnerable; the most frequent charge point ? Let the Advocates of the doctrine pro- against their system being that it deduce it. On the contrary, dves she not in the preciates good morals. But le conmost explicit, uniform, positive, and earnest tends, that it is as absurd 10 conclude manner, reject this system, and maintain the that they either deny the necessity, or very opposite one ? In respect to merit, she places, we have seen, Faith and Works pre- under-rate the value of good works, becisely on the same footing; and ascribes this, cause they exclude them from the oiwholly, in all senses, to our Redeemer : and fice of justifying, as it would be to asthen, when treating directly on the means, or sert that they denied the necessity, or condition, or whatever it is called, by which we depreciated the value of our eyes, beobtain justification, she says, “It is BY FAITH ONLY;' «
by faith withouT WORKS;” by cause they maintained that these canfaith as it is perfectly distinct from obedience not perform the functions of the hands. to the law, namely, “ as it directly sends us to, If it were true that their doctrines, in and embraces Christ.” She affirms, express their natural tendency and effect, enly and repeatedly, that in this act of approach: couraged men in sin, no reprobation, ing the Saviour for justification, "we must forsake, or leave behind us, all our supposed he thinks, could be too severe for them. good virtues ;" “that we must not do good His business, however, being merely to works to the intent to be made just by doing of investigate, not to vindicate, the dccthem ;” that whatever good works are joinert trines of the Church, and to shew whose with faith in every man that is justified, "it opinions most resenible them, he quits OF JUSTIFYING;" that “ however good works this point, and proceeds to state what and faith be present together in him that is the standard or rule of morality is which justified, yet that THEY JUSTIFY NOT ALL she prescribes; viz. the whole moral TOGETHER.", She shows, that she considers law of God, from an obligation to which it as impossible for good works to be a condi- she allows no Christian man to be free. tion of justification, as it is for the effect to This law she considers as comprising precede its cause, by constantly representing ihese works as the fruits and effects of justifi. the duties of supreme love to God, and cation.
devotedness to his service, as well as
SHUTTETH THEM OUT FROM THE OFFICE
the duties which for his sake, and in spect our neighbour, as loyalty to the obedience to his command, we owe to King, and subjection to Government, our neighbour. She insists not on out- the duties of the pastoral office, veraci. ward and partial obedience, but on a ty, candour, benevolence, and beneficonversion of the heart to God on an cence ;-and the conclusion he draws uniform respect to every commande from the whole is, that the divines to ment.
whom he is opposed have no good In short, the morality which our Church ground for congratulating themselves, requires, is, an exact conformity of heart and and censuring those he vindicates, in practice to the holy will of God as revealed in regard to the RULE OF MORALS; the his word; or, that “we be made like the latter prescribing a perfect standard image of his Only-begotten Son, Jesus Christ.”
even the whole moral law of God, and (p. 224.)
maintaining the duty of perfect conforThat the subjects of his vindication mity in heart and conduct to this Law; perfectly accord with the Church in while the former substitutes some this view of the matter, Mr. O. endea- vague and indeterminate rule which vours to shew by various quotations they call sincerity, do not insist on the from their writings; and he defies any necessity of a renovation of the heart, one to disprove his statements. Their make comparatively little account of opponents, on the other hand, whose the first table of the Law, and are far words are as usual adduced in support from being strict either in those points of his assertions, are represented as sub- which respect their own conduct, or in stituting sincerity for perfect obedience, those branches of morality which conand as teaching that the new covenant cern their neighbour. furnishes a new and more lenient rule of In the second Section, which treats morals, softens the rigour of the law of concerning the SANCTIONS of morality, it works, and admits of a defective obedience. is Mr. O.'s object to shew, that though The renovation of the heart, which our he and his friends maintain that good Church considers as essential to Chris- works are neither the meritorious cause, tianity, he states them to be so far from nor the appointed condition of Justificainculcating, that they commonly treat it tion, they do not on that account dewith ridicule and contempt; and as to stroy the sanctions, or dispense with the the immediate duties of the first table of necessity of morality; but that, on the the Law, they either make little ac- contrary, they, in common with the count of them, or they consider all zea- Church of England, enforce the one, lous regard to them as a mark of enthu- and inculcate the other, with far more siasm.
“ The relative duties," says one, earnestness than their opponents. With are of all the most indispensable.' respect to the Church he shews, that « Too much," says another, “ is made she secures the interests, and inculof faith and devotion.” “ The highest cates the necessity of morality, by conoffence," observes a third, “men can sidering good works as the natural fruit, possibly commit against God, is, to hurt and necessary effect of that faith which themselves.” “ The happiness of men justifies; (p. 273.) on which point, is the end and the measure even of our both in her Homilies and Articles, she duty to God;" (p. 236.) thus making is very full and decisive. The persons the first and great commandmenta mere who come within the line of his vindisubsidiary to the second.
cation are represented as universally But taking the matter on their own concurring in this opinion, while it is grounds, and confining his view to the strenuously opposed by their assailants, second table of the Law, Mr. O. main- particularly by Mr. Daubeny, and the tains, that their claim to superior strict- Anti-jacobin Reviewers, whose sentiness of morality must be relinquished; ments are exhibited by the author at and he supports his argument by-a de- some length. tailed comparison of the sentiments of He also shews, that our Church eneach party respecting the duties we forces the necessity of good works, by owe to ourselves, as temperance, sober. considering them as the only satisfaca ness, chastity, &c. and those which re- 'tory evidence of faith and a justified
state ; in other words, by making tance, and to an earnest application to Sanctification the necessary evidence Christ for mercy, which the Church, of Justification (p. 283,); and he main. in common with those whose cause he tains that this is not defining faith by pleads, holds forth to the impenitent its effects, these effects being referred und unbelieving, when compared with to, not in order to ascertain the nature the motives insisted on by his oppoof faith, but the reality of its existence; nents. By the former, the penalty anan expedient which, Bp. Cleaves shews, nexed to disobedience, and the punishis constantly resorted to with respect ment awaiting the finally impenitent, to “ all active principles."
are spoken of in the most awsul terms; The other grounds on which, ac- for which, he observes by the way, cording to Mr. O., the church enforces they are holden up to ridicule as " inthe necessity of holiness, and stimu- terlarding their discourses with slices lates our endeavours after the greatest of hell and damnation;" &c. &c. while possible eminency therein, in which the latter labour to mitigate the appaalso he represents himself and his rent severity of the threatened punishfriends as perfectly agreeing with her, ment, and make as little as possible are, that God has commanded us to be of the awful representations of Scripholy ; that our restoration to holiness ture respecting it; and in proof of is a grand end of the Christian dispen- this charge, he refers to passages in sation ; that those good works which the writings of Mr. Fellowes, Dr. Paare the fruits of faith are pleasing and ley, Mr. Polwhele, Dr. Hey, and acceptable to God through Christ; that others. As therefore, he uberves in we are bound by the highest obligation conclusion, of gratitude to obey his will, and to
It has been before proved that our system live unto him who hath died for us; exhibits the strongest incentives tu love, grathat holiness is absolutely necessary in titude, and every principle that can influence order to qualify us for spiritual exer- the better part, and better passions of men, so cises here, and the enjoyment of hea. it must here be confessed, that as far as the
fear of punishment can operate as a guardian of ven hereafter; and, lastly, that our
morals, we also have clearly the advantage. eternal state of felicity in heaven will (p. 305, 306.) be proportioned to our degree of fruitfulness in good works. And are there,
The first part of the third Section is
occupied in the vindication of certain can there be, adds Mr. O.
individuals, whom the author considers Any more powerful motives to obedience, also as objects of his general defence, than those which have been mentioned? What from specific charges brought against principles can bind the consciences, interest the feelings, and influence the conduct of them by Mr. Ludlam, the Anti-jacubin Christ's professed disciples, if considerations Reviewers, and Mr. Daubeny ; but as like these do not? Have our opponents any our review of this work has already more exalted or more efficacious incentives to extended to a great length, and as the virtue? (p. 296.)
main argument is not materially afIs this setting up « faith in oppo- fected by this vindication, we shall not sition to a good life?” Is this teaching enter on any particular analysis of it. "something very averse to morality, The author then endeavours to shew, and meriting the very heavy charges from general experience, as well as with which we are loaded on this sub. from the concessions of those whom ject?” (p. 295.) He endeavours to he opposes, that not withstanding the shew at the same time, by a reference instances to the contrary, which disinto their writers, how much lower are genuously, he conceives, though with the motives to holiness, which the di- great apparent triumph, are brought vines whom he opposes are in the ha- forward by Mr. Duubeny, Mr Polbit of inculcating
whele, Dr. Croft, &c. the sincere adMr. O. employs the remaining part herents to the doctrines for which he of this section in shewing, how much contends, "taken mass for mass,” exstronger are the motives to repen- hibit “ a more marked abnence." Christ. Observ. No. 4,
From gross vice, and voluptuous dissipa- sons know of our doctrines, or bow wilfully tion ; a more regular observance of religious must they misrepresent them! From this full ordinances; a more habitual sense of divine and extensive view of the subject of morality things, and gratitude towards the Saviour; a it appears, more characteristic regard to the will and au That we hold equally the necessity of Sanc. thority of God in their proceedings; more tification as of Justification, and consider these strenuous exertions to mend and bless man. blessings equally provided for in the covenant kind; in short, more real godliness, sobers of grace: that we enforce the practice of good ness, and righteousness, than are to be found works precisely on the same grounds which our among the opposers of these doctrin (p. Church does: and that, whether regard is had 321.)
to the rule of morality, or to its sanctions, or to And he refers for fuller evidence on
the degree of it absolutely insisted upon as the
evidence of a Christian state ; whether we arthis point, to the history of the Church gue a priori from the natural tendency of the by Mr. Milner, to the “approved and doctrines themselves to promote genuine vir. unanswerable work of Mr. Fuller,” and tue, or whether a posteriori we have recourse to several other authorities.
to the effects actually produced by them, our But Mr. O. does not rest here. He far more efficacious, than those of our oppo
moral system is far stricter, and our doctrines endeavours to make it appear, that it nents are. (p. 331, 332.) is not the laxness, but the strictness of the morality inculcated by the subjects which influence Mr. Overton, and his
In the VIIIth CHAPTER the reasons of his apology, which has excited so friends, in adhering to the genuine much complaint, opposition, and invec- doctrines of our Articles, Liturgy, and tive; and is this,” he says, “ is plainly expressed in the whole catalogue of Homilies, are stated to be as follows: their objections against the strictness
“ First, We cannot on any other of our standard of morals, and their ground justify our subscription to
these forms of doctrine and worship." attempts to substitute " a more lenient rule," and is also implied in their slight
“ Secondly, We very highly value requisitions as to the evidence of a
our established forms of doctrine and Christian state."
worship." (p. 347.) But if all this is so undeniably the fact, how
“ Thirdly, We conceive that our escould Mr. Clapham, before a learned bishop and a congregation of divines, appeal to the
tablished forms cxhibit the plain and day of judgment, solemnly pledge himself to genuine doctrine of the Scriptures.” (p. lay aside “every prejudice, and to consider 368.) the matter “ fairly and impartially," as he On each of these heads the author “ believes it will appear, when the secrets of expatiates pretty largely: in speaking all hearts shall be disclosed,” and then ex- of the first, he endeavours to expose claim concerning us ; “ The regulation of the moral temper, and the extinction of the ma.
the various reserves and equivocations, lignant passions, do not alas ! seem to be es- whereby Dr. Paley, Dr. Balguy, and sential, or even subordinate parts of their sys- Dr. Hey would justify a departure tem!" How could the grave prelate “command” such gross calumny to be published the Articles; contrasting therewith the
from the original and obvious sense of With what face can Mr. Fellowes affirm, that we make “ Christianity itself an instru. language of the royal declaration, of ment for the propagation of vice and the dif- the Canons, of Abp. Secker, and Bps. fusion of misery;" that our " doctrines Cony bear, Barrington, and Pretty man. tend to deter even good men from the practice of virtue, and powerfully impel bad men
In treating of the second, he labours on in the career of wickedness?" With what
to rescue our established forms from regard to fact does Mr. Haggit insinuate, that the charge of enthusiasm advanced by " the obvious effect of our doctrine is, to cut Dr. Croft; and from the objections asunder the bonds of all moral obligation, and which have been urged against them, to put every man's life and property at the mercy of every fanatical audience ? How can
as containing mysterious and difficult
doctrines. so many persons, under a profession of zeal for truth and justice, load us with such palpa That, he adds, upon which we would partibly false and ignominious charges on this sub. cularly rest our vindication of this part of the ject! How groundless are the apprehensions established forms, is, their moderation, cauwhich are pretended to be entertained by the tion, and modest acquiescence in the plain letter more respectable and moderate of those who of Scripture, on these deep points. They, dediffer from us! How little must all these per- cide not, where the word of God is not deci..