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the very same argument which the offender uses to exculpate himself . This argumentum ad hominemP to me appears unanswerable 5 if so the objector is driven out of another strong hold .
One difficulty still remains . It will be askedp how can this constitution of things be reconciled to the equity of the divine administration ? Is it not unjust in the Deity to inflict even
the miseries of vicious conduct upon subjects , whose depravities he mot only foresaw 9 but which originate from the -very arrangements which he himself has pre-ordained ?
This objection is doubtless formidable j but it is as much in the province of the advocate for the uncontrouled freedom of the will to solve it 9 as of the Necessarian . The Supretne Being must have foreseen that this
boasted freedom would be shamefully abused , in consequence of the state in 'which the agent has been placed by Divine appointment . It cam only be fully solvedj , when we shall have obtained clear conceptions of the infinite
good which shall arise from the permission of evil ? under a Governor ^ all iwhose attributes are perfect . Let us , in the mean time , inquire in what this difficulty consists ? Is it
not founded on a supposition only , that no medium can possibly be found to reconcile the justice of God with those conceptions of the nature of justice which he himself has implanted in man ? If , therefore , we be able to
support the possibility of smch a mediumj > the objection is removed . Will it not then be removed by the swpposition that all punishments and all sufferings , under the Supreme ' administration , will finally prove corrective * that they will ultimately manifest themselves to be of the greatest benefit to the offender ? No man in his
senses wsll consider that to be an act of injustice which was the most proper , as it may be the only method of reclaiming him from his vices , forming his character , and preparing him for permanent well-being . Should it be alleged that this is merely a
supposition ? it is still upon a level with the supposition that no answer can possibly be given by the Necessarian to the assertion that , upon his principles , the Jutige of all the earth cannot do fight . On the contra ry ^ It evinces
that he cannot do wrong * The possible existence of such a plan is a complete confutation of an objection which is solely founded in an imaginary impossibility . I may add ? however * that this
supposition is founded , not upon a mere possibility ? but upon a high degree of probability . It is a supposition consonant with reason , most honourable to all the relative attributes of
God , most consoling to every man of every character . It is encouraging to the practice of every virtue 5 and the absolute certainty of a necessary degree of salutary chastisement "will alarm offenders infinitely more than all the tremendous threats of eternal
misery 5 from which every murderer ? in the present day , is encouraged to expect an Escape by a simple act of faith and the sudden contrition of a panic-struck mind . It could also be
shewn , were this the place for enlargement , that the position has a . better foundation in the Sacred Scriptures ^ than most of those speculative opinions or doctrines of inference-which
have at any time engaged the attention of polemical divines * As this article is drawn out to a length which threatens to be tedious to many of your readets , I shall reserve my answer to your reviewer ' s remarks concerning my strictures upon Mr . Hume and his metaphysical writings ,, for a future Number . THOMAS COGANo 1 iiljlfci ¦
* ld A Dorsetshire tflergyman ' s Treatment of the Dissenters' Dead
"wm »"" A Dorsetshire Clergyman ' s Treatment of the Dissenters' Dead . Mingwood 9 Sir * November 9 , 4 9 1817 . Iff SEND for insertion , in your liberal
JL publication , an account of a method practised by a clergyman in Dorsetshire , to shew his aversion from and to check the growth of Dissenters in his parish ; for the truth of which I can produce numerous testimonies . When a Dissenter is brought to be
buried , this clergyman will not allow the corpse to be carried into the church ; and , of course , he only reads that portion of the service which is ordered ** to be spoken at the grave /'
Sorae weak-minded persons have been influenced by the apprehension that this slight might be shewn to their remains , and have been known to refrain from going to the meeting while alivef lest , forsooth , they should
Monthly Repository (1806-1838) and Unitarian Chronicle (1832-1833), Jan. 2, 1818, page 20, in the Nineteenth-Century Serials Edition (2008; 2018) ncse.ac.uk/periodicals/mruc/issues/vm2-ncseproduct2472/page/20/