Page images
PDF
EPUB

remove your Prejudices,and prepare you for the Reception of Truth, to quicken your Faculties, and blefs you in the Exercise of them, &c. Fly to your heavenly Inftructor, when any thing perplexes you. Implore and depend upon his Aid in the Solution of Difficulties. Confider alfo, that when you search after Truth, you are always in the Prefence of that God who is Truth it felf, and who hates those who inquire with a proud or a double Heart; who either rely upon their own Strength, or are willing to impofe upon themfelves, or to be impos'd upon by others. Study therefore with the greatest Humility and Impartiality. Be not forward to imbrace the Notions of thofe Men whom you have receiv'd a good Opinion of; or to reject the Notions of those whom you do not love and admire. But call every thing to the Bar of right Reason and divine Revelation; judge by that Rule; and let nothing but Evidence, drawn from Reason or Revelation, influence or determin you. But upon these Heads I need not inlarge. For I am writing, I hope, to a very good Chriftian.

These things being premis'd,I fhall now proceed, according to my Promife, to felect a fmall Number of Books, written by English Men, which, with fome Helps borrow'd of the Foreiners before mention'd, will furnish you with a Body of Divinity; and to prescribe fuch a Method of reading them, as, I hope, may be useful to you.

You begin then with the Foundation of all Religion, both natural and revel'd, I mean the Being and Attributes of God. For this I refer you to Dr. Clarke's Demonftration. Which when you have read, 'twill be fit for you to inquire into the Law of Nature or Natural

B

Religion.

of the Being and and of Natural Attributes of God, Religion.

Religion. For this I refer you to the fame Author's Difcourfe concerning the unchangeable Obligations of Natural Religion, and the Truth and Certainty of the Chrifian Revelation, from the Beginning of the Book (omitting the Preface) to the end of the Fourth Propofition.

Hypothefts of

the Deifts.

In the next place you are to exaof the Truth of min the Authority of the Holy ScriChriftianity. ptures, and the Truth of Chriftianity; and that with refpect to the different Hypothefes of Deifts, Jews, Mahometans and Pagans. First, With refpect to the Hypothefis Firft, With of the Deifts; who grant that there is a respect to the God, and profefs to believe and praetife the Law of Nature, or Natural Religion; but deny what we call Revelation, or God's having declar'd his Will to Mankind by Infpir'd Perfons. Now the Scheme of the Deifts is effectually deftroy'd by proving, First, That 'tis extremely agreeable to Reafon, that God fhould revele himself to Mankind. See the Fifth, Sixth and Seventh Propofitions of Dr. Clarke's aforefaid Dif" courfe. Secondly, That God did actually revele his Will to Mankind by Jefus Chrift and his Apoftles. For, First, The Books of the New Teftament were written by those Perfons whofe Names they bear. See the Seventeenth Chapter of the Second Part of the First Volame of Dr. Jenkin's Reasonableness and Certainty of the Chriftian Religion, Dr. Whitby's Prefatory Difcourfe concerning the Four Gofpels, and his Prefaces to the Gofpels of St. Mark, St. Luke, and St. John (omitting his Poftfcript to that on St. John) all which are in his First Volume of Annotations. See alfo the Seventh Section of his General

That the Books of the New Teftament were written by thofe Perfons whofe Names they bear.

General Preface to the Second Volume. As for the Epistle to the Hebrews, the Author of which is not yet agreed on, See Dr. Whitby's Preface to that Epistle.

Secondly, The Matters of Fact related in the Books of the New Teftament are unquestionably true. See the Fifteenth Chapter of the Second Part of the firft Volume of Dr. Jenkin's Reasonableness and Certainty of the Chri ftian Religion. From whence it follows, First, That our Savior, his Apoftles, and the Primitive Chriftians, did certainly work Miracles in Confirma→ tion of their Doctrin, and were endued by God with diverfe Supernatural Gifts. As for the nature of Miracles, fee the Fourteenth Propofition of Dr. Clarke's Difcourfe, from the Beginning of it down to the Paragraph which begins thus, Secondly, The Divine Authority of the Chriftian. Revelation, &c. in the Margin of which Paragraph are thefe Words, Of the fulfilling the Prophefies, as an Evidence of our Savior's Divine Commiffion. And that our Savior, his Apostles, and the Primitive Chriftians did actually work Miracles, and were endued by God with diverse Supernatural Gifts, fee the Thirteenth and Sixteenth Chapters of the Second Part of the First Volume of Dr. Jenkin's Reasonableness and Certainty of the Chriftian Religion; the Tenth Section of Dr. Whitby's General Preface to his First Volume of Annotations, down to that Paragraph which begins with In Answer to what, &c. and the Twelfth and Thirteenth Sections of the fame ; and his General Preface to his Second Volume, from the Beginning of the Second, to the end of the Sixth Se &tion; and alfo from the Beginning of the Eighth, to the End of the Fifteenth Section. Secondly, B 2

That

[ocr errors]

That the Matters of Fact related in the New Teftament

are true.

That our Savior did most certainly rife from the Dead. See Bishop Pearfon on the Fifth Article, beginning at He rofe again. See also the Fourteenth Chapter of the Second Part of the First Volume of Dr. Jenkin's Reasonablenefs and Certainty of the Chrifian Religion, the Twenty eighth Chapter of the Second Volume of the fame Book, and the Eleventh Section of Dr. Whitby's General Preface to his First Volume of Annotations.

Thirdly, Our Savior and his Apoftles were Teachers fent from, and infpir'd by, Almighty God; and confequently the Holy Scriptures are of Divine Authority, and the Christian Religion is undoubtedly true. See the Ninth, Tenth, Eleventh and Twelfth Propofitions of Dr. Clarke's Difcourfe; the Eighteenth Chapter of the Second Part of the First Volume of Dr. Jenkin's Reasonablenefs and Certainty of the Chriftian Religion; the Thirteenth, Fourteenth and Fifteenth Propofitions of Dr. Clarke's Difcourse, the first Eight Sections of Dr. Whitby's General Preface to his First Volume of Annotations, and the Fourth Part of the First Volume of Dr. Jenkin's Reasonableness and Certainty of the Chriftian Religion.

That our Savior and his Apoftles were Teachers fent from, and inspir'd by, Almighty God.

ment.

And because the Scriptures of the Of the Scriptures Old Teftament are alfo to be reof the Old Tefta- ceiv'd by Chriftians, therefore the divine Authority of them must be eftablifh'd. See the Eleventh and First Chapters of the Second Part of the First Volume of Dr. Jenkin's Reasonableness and Certainty of the Chriftian Religion, and alfo from the beginning of the Third, to the end of the Tenth Chapter of the fame Book.

That

That the Canon of Scripture receiv'd by our Church is perfect, fee the Seventh and Ninth Queftions of Turretin's Locus Secundus, and the Fourth Chapter of the Second Volume of Dr. Jenkin's Reasonableness and Certainty of the Chriftian Religion. And that our Copies of the Bible are uncorrupt, fee the Tenth Queftion of Turretin's Locus Secundus, and the Fifth Chapter of the Second Volume of Dr. Jenkin's Reasonableness and Certainty of the Chriftian Religion.

Concerning the Objections made by the Deifts, fee the Tenth Section of Dr. Whitby's General Preface to his First Volume of Annotations, from In answer to what, &c. to the end of it; and the Sixth, Seventh, Eighth, Eleventh, Thirty firft, Thirty third, Thirty fourth, Thirty fifth, and Thirty fixth Chapters of the Second Volume of Dr. Jenkin's Reasonableness and Certainty of the Chriftian Religion.

Secondly, We come now to the Controverfies with the Jews. They acknowledge the divine Authority of the Old Teftament, which contains many Prophefies concerning the Meffiah. Our Business therefore is to prove, that the Bleffed Jefus is that Meffiah, who was in the Old Teftament prophefied of. And this is done,

First, By fhewing that the Bleffed Jefus and his Apoftles were Teachers fent from, and infpir'd by, Almighty God. To this End you may use the fame Arguments which have been mention'd as offer'd to a Deift. Now if the Bleffed Jefus

proper to be

B 3

and,

of the Canon and Integrity of the

Scriptures.

of the Objections

of the Deifts.

Secondly, With pothesis of the Jews.

respect to the Hy

That our Savior and his Apoftles were Teachers fent from, and infpir'd by, Almighty God.

« PreviousContinue »