On this page
- Text (2)
Note: This text has been automatically extracted via Optical Character Recognition (OCR) software. The text has not been manually corrected and should not be relied on to be an accurate representation of the item.
Additionally, when viewing full transcripts, extracted text may not be in the same order as the original document.
language of those who insolently assume the title of the Orthodox . Such are the insults to be endured by honest men , who dare to think for themselves , when they differ from the law-established dogmas of Scribes and Pharisees . Such , too , is the impious arrogance of the latter to decide on every question that comes between man and his
God . Though their pretensions are sometimes resisted , they are too frequently allowed ; and doctrines are admitted , not because they are true , but because they are clamorously advocated , because those who reject them are vili 6 ed and anathematized—or because they are connected with certain worldly advantages , and espoused by the powers that be—by landlords , patrons , profitable customers , and the great man of the family , whose smile must be purchased by a dereliction of
principle , and the advocacy of established corruptions . Wealth , and power , and fashion , and popularity , have a wonderful influence , as every one knows , in perverting the judgment of more than their possessors . They dazzle the vain , and seduce the weak . As for the worldling , he follows the stream , and in all circumstances clings to the side of the strong . He tolerates every abuse—justifies every enormity . In the judgment-hall he re-echoes the sentence of Pilate , and in the crowd he shouts , not Christ but Barabbas !
* We have sometimes heard it maintained that it is of little consequence what master a man serves , whatTorm of church discipline he prefers , or what mode of faith he professes , provided his life be virtuous : " His can't be wrong whose life is in the right /' Grant the truth of this often-repeated adage—we ask is that man ' s life in the right who , though he keeps nine of the commandments , violates the tenth—who , though he neither steals , murders , nor commits
adultery , yet bears false witness against his neighbour ? Is he in the right who gives his assent and consent to any articles of faith , which he does not either believe or understand ? Is he in the right who sanctions any mode of worship which he feels persuaded is unscriptural—who bows in the house of Rimmon , or abets the conduct of the sons of Eli , whose profligacy caused men to ' abhor the offering of
the Lord ? " No—we contend that his life is in the wrong . By sanctioning what is false , he denies what is true . He acts a lie—he plays the hypocrite . While he pretends to be the friend of Christ , he promotes the interests of Belial . He does not crucify his master , indeed —he only delivers him into the hand of his enemies . He is neither his judge nor executioner . No—he is only a traitor , and he consummates his treason with a kiss . '—Drummon&s Sermon ^ pp . 17-19 .
• And , in the first place , if you are disciples of Christ , worthy of the name , you will learn of him only . His school is not one in which the pupils are commissioned and empowered to perform the Master ' s duty . * ' Learn of me" is his injunction , not " learn of mine . " You will find , indeed , many of your uninspired fellow-disciples very willing , and * in their own opinions , quite competent , to teach you ; they will kindly
offer to save you the trouble of personal inquiry ; they will give you lists properly numbered , and arranged , and drawn up in terms even more clear and explicit than those of Scripture , of the articles , both essential , and non-essential , of the Christian faith ; they will tell you Exactly what you musL and what you may , ju \ & what you may not %
Critical Notices * —Singte Sermons . SI
Monthly Repository (1806-1838) and Unitarian Chronicle (1832-1833), Jan. 2, 1832, page 51, in the Nineteenth-Century Serials Edition (2008; 2018) ncse.ac.uk/periodicals/mruc/issues/vm2-ncseproduct1804/page/51/