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CHURCH UNION.

A

SERIES

OF

DISCOURS E S,

IN WHICH IT IS URGED, THAT

THE GREAT CHRISTIAN DUTY,

OF MAINTAINING

COMMUNION WITH THE APOSTOLICAL CHURCH,

REMAINS UNCANCELLED BY THE

TOLERANCE OF BRITISH LAWS.

" SAY I THESE THINGS AS A MAN; OR SAITH NOT THE LAW THE SAME ALSO ?"

1 Cor. ix. 8.

BY EDWARD DAVIES,
RECTOR OF BISHOPSTON, IN THE DIOCESE OF ST. DAVID's;

‘and Author of Celtic Researches," " The Mythology and Rites of the British Druids," &c.

London:

PRINTED FOR JOHN BOOTH, DUKE-STREET,

PORTLAND-PLACE,

1811.

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BYWORTH & BALLINTIVE, Printers, Adelphi, London.

TO THE RIGHT HONOURABLE

HENRY, LORD VISCOUNT SIDMOUTH,

MY LORD,

As a friend to the church of England, your lordship has declared yourself firm, but not intolerant ; neither deserting the cause of good order on the one hand, nor, on the other, imposing an undue restraint upon the freedom of opinion.

It is, therefore, hoped that my very act in presenting this work to your lordship, will be accepted, both as a testimony of unqualified respect and approbation, and also as the best means of communicating an immediate and general impression of the temper in which it is written. .

With the highest sense of your lordship’s distinguished worth, whether in public or in

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private life, I have the honour to subscribe
myself, my lord,
Your lordship's most devoted,
and very humble servant,

EDWARD DAVIES,
Olveston, Dec. 12, 1810.

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PREFACE.

As the rights of that civil and religious liberty, which is Britain's pre-eminent character, are sure to be urged in reply to all argument in support of our national church-to every appeal which marks the danger of separation, either licentious or needless, at the best-it is not improbable that my volume should give occasion to keen strictures, founded upon this popular basis. It is therefore expedient, that I should guard against a misconception of my object and principles, by a direct statement of the opinion, which it has been the habit of my life to entertain, upon these important subjects.

In the first place, then, I feel inyself bound, as a Christian, to regulate my principles by the law of Christ, as it is declared in the New Testament. And it appears to me the doctrine of this book, that an orderly submission to the civil government, through all its gradations, in the lawful and the regular exercise of its authority, is indispensable. At the same time, I do not conceive that Christianity requires us to abandon the constitutional rights of the people, or to resign that reasonable portion of civil

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