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upon $ e fteb members of a Christian congregation the propriety of condescension and courtesy to their pooref Christian brethren , I might reason in this manner , €€ Know ye nat that your poor brethren will sit with Abraham , and Isaac , and Jacob , and Jesus , in heaven , and if this be their destination , are they unworthy of your fellowship ?" Here would be an argument similar to that of the Apostle . Here a claim to an inferior would be deduced from destination to a , superior honour .
A distinction has been made be * tween the reasonings of the apostles and the doctrines an which tliey are founded ; and it lia § been contended , that the doctrines may be divine though the reasoning should be inconclusive .
Now I admit that the divinity of doctrines is indepencfeat of the conclusiveness of reasonings . At the same time , however , it appears to me that there was a necessity for guarding the apostles from error in reasoning as well as from , error in doctrine , and
that , therefore , as whatever was necessary for the perfection of the Christian dispensation wattld not be with- * holden from . it , we may believe that the apostles were guarded from error
in their reasonings as well as in their doctrines . If reasoning was necessary , the eonclusivepess of reasoning must have been necessary . A necessity for reasoning is just the same thing as a necessity for couclusiveness of
reasoning , and , therefore , if it was necessary for the apostles to reason , it was necessar y for them ta reason conclusively . Now , if reasoning" bad not been necessary , it would never have been used . It could be only a necessity for it that could suggest the adoption of it . . ¦
Perhaps ^ however , it will be said , that the mere statement of , the doctrines upon the authority of God xyaa sufficient--tliat reasoning was no further necessary than ajs suitable to " Uistrate them—that reasoning was advantag eous rather than necessary , and that independently of h the bare ^ ord of God would have been enough ^ JJ establish the respective doctrines of - u-w tfaafry . Well ,. l «* t the pr < ani » e * j * narro wed , aqd let it be allowed „ ^ asonings wre o ^ ^ eful , not u !*!? . ry in the strict aeitee , of the uor it may still be asked , " fcr i *
likely that he who shed such a prof a * sion of communications upon the pri * mitive Christians , as we see somewhat exemplified in the first Epistle to the Corinthians , would refuse to guard pn apostle from error in an useful argument V Surely in an jage in which
inspiration was communicated , so copiously—an age in which the words of the prophet Joel , as quoted * by Peter in Acts ii ., were aipplicable , an apostle might expect , and would expect , a communication on every occasion in which it would be useful .
Our Lord promised to his disciples that the spirit of truth would abide with them , eis ton aiona . From this spirit of truth , then , the apostles would expect every assistance that would be beneficial to them ' and their
cause . They would never believe that that spirit would desert them at a time when . they were in danger of making mistakes in their reasonings . It is true that the apostles do not say that they are divinely inspired , or divinely , guarded in their reasonings ^
But it was not necessary to say this in an age in which divine assistance was ao common , and in which , divine assistance on every suitable , occasion would be taken for granted . Those whom they addressed would take this for granted , without any special declaration respecting it . AUQUIS .
A Protest of Sir Isaac Newton ' s . > 59 £
Sir , r 1 HE following morceau is from . JL D' Israeli ' s Second Series of Curiosities of Literature . ( Vol . I . pp . 65 , 66 . ) Should you be able to give the protest of Sir Isaac Newton ' s , to which it alludes , entire to your readers , it would , no doubt , be generally acceptable . A PURVEYOR .
* ' When the fury of Jhe civil Avars had exhauaed all parlies , and a breath * ing time from the passions and mad * ness of the age allowed ingenious men to return once more to their forsaken studies , Baconfs vision of a pluloso *
phical society appears to have occupied their reveries . It charmed the fancy of Cowley and Mifcton ; but the politics and religion of the times Were still possessed bf the same phrenzy and d ) vioity and polkica were unaoimously agreed to be utterly proscribed
Monthly Repository (1806-1838) and Unitarian Chronicle (1832-1833), Oct. 2, 1823, page 591, in the Nineteenth-Century Serials Edition (2008; 2018) ncse.ac.uk/periodicals/mruc/issues/vm2-ncseproduct1789/page/31/