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.
Hwnerton , Sra , October Q , 1824 . f O object of tf * vy is lie Vlio once Nsets bis foot in i&e thorny brake of controversy . But we must not , to consult our ease , desert the cause which wfe believe to be that of trttth
find righteousness . Mr . Robert Batoe * well lias honoured my observations tm Professor Cheaevi&re ' s Summary with some l * emarks , which oblige me to re * cfuesX your allowance of a rejoinder . I shall aim at brevity . I . In all that Mr . B . has advanced
I can find nothing which touches the chief object of my argument , that , by all the rules of reason , equity and religion , M . Malan , as a minister of tfhe Church of Geneva , and other persons as Dissenters from it , have the
same right to preach the doctrines which they believe , ( artd A fortiori as being the original doctrines of that church , ) Wlrich ministers of the opposite class have to preach their religious sentiments .
It is to no purpose to dilate , as Mr . © . has done , upon "the intolerant and persecuting spirit ^ of the old CaU vhiists of Geneva . My papers have admitted and ^ deplored and cotidemned it . In this respect they fell imder the same condemnation as , I mourn to
say , all ike Reformed Churches of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries , except the Congregationalists of England , the Antipsetiobaptitfts , and the Quakers . But flte more modern Church of Geneva has no excuse if , in this greatest of all respects , it has
" 668 Dr . > J . Pye Smith's fbejoind ^ r to Mr . BoJteweW * Remark *
from the main object of my letter , which was to convince your readers that thfe Pastors of Geneva are not tlife
dumb and slothful [ dogs ] , nor me the people the irreligious infidels , which © r * J . Pye Smith and his friends Would willingly persuade them to believe * ROBERT BAKEWELL .
P . S . My last letter ended abruptly in consequence of the slip of paper on Which the conclusion was written having beenjomitted . The sentence . when completed was as follows : u Almost
every nation has defects from peculiar circumstances" in its situation or government ; but the traveller v ^ ho marks i % ese Sqfects should remember , that Tits own countrymen are not faultless .
titft k ^ j ? t lip with the ma * eh of the age , the progress of liberal aiid just opinions . The chief authors bf its altered state , when they imported Mr . lioivke ' s notions as a theologian , ought ulso to have paid him practical honour as the noMe and unanswerable
advocate of Religious Freedom . Consistent Ohdstiaws of all denominations , iit the present day , lament the slowness of their predecessors , at the period of the Reformation , to perceive the Universal rf ^ bt ctf full religious liberty . % w % tbis mfechievous defect was not peculiar to Calvinists : the Lutherans , the ^ glish Arminians under Laud and tlie Steuarts . and other classes of
Protestafrts , were deeply infected by it . fiowev ^ r ^ it should m > t be forgotten 4 tot the body of men who first stood forwards as the advocates of totera-€ on , were the English Independents t > r Gongregationalists , and tliat they "were Gal vinists .
For what purpose , but that of ere * Jiting an unfair odium , does Mr . B . introduce the sanguinary executions lit Geneva for the crime of witchcraft , in the times of the Calvinfetic ascenda ; ncy ? He cannot but know that , d&ring that period , most , if not nil , citilized nations laboured under the
same delusion ; and that , in England , a considerable number of persons was executed for that imaginary crime . Mr . B&kewell defends the Genevese Pastors for removing M . Malan from their community , upon the ground of the right of every religious society to
form its own regulations : and he torin its own regulations ; and he pursues his argument thus : " M . Ma-Ian , disregarding these regulations , not only made those doctrines the principal subject of his discourses , but represented all who did not believe them in his own manner , as unworthy the name of Christians . What would
Dr . Smith say , were u preadher among the Independents or Methodists to declare in bis discourses that all his brethren hi the ministry were in a stale of deplorable and damnable error ; that the doctrine of the Trinity was false , and all who believed in it were
idolaters and had no hope of salvation ? Surely Dr . S . must admit , that if after being remonstrated with mikHy again and again , the minister still persisted in preaching against the Trinity , and in calling his brethren idolaters and enemies of the gospel , they would be
Monthly Repository (1806-1838) and Unitarian Chronicle (1832-1833), Nov. 2, 1824, page 668, in the Nineteenth-Century Serials Edition (2008; 2018) ncse.ac.uk/periodicals/mruc/issues/vm2-ncseproduct2530/page/28/