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as well as magistrates of that church.--So then, they fell not by wicked, but by righteous and just hands; and the blood of these martyrs was innocently spilt !- But an bint is sufficient to expose the horrid absurdity and danger of this doctrine.

We conclude, by taking notice of a charge advanced against us of a very extraordinary nature, but which rather provokes our mirth ihan our pain. In this matter of our separation, “ we act « from policy and worldly interest,--and for our own filthy lucre's sake, lead men into this dan

gerous and destructive schism."* You smiled, gentlemen, no doubt, when you heard us thus accused. Tbis finishes our character: we are, it seems, not hypocrites only, but idiots too, as devoid of sense, as of grace. The children of this world use to be wiser in their generation than the children of light ; but behold! here are schismatics and sinners, so left of heaven and infatuated, as to seek worldly wealth and preferment in a way of worldly persecution and disgrace. They sell their conscience, and their virtue, and have not one benefice, not one dig. nity, nothing but contempt and hard names to their bargain : whereas, there is another market to which they might go, and, at the same time, purchase great opulence, many honours, and stand a fair chance for lordships, and mitres, and coaches and six.-What! was it the love of filthy lucre which made our fathers quit their livings and dignities in the church, to the number of near two thousand, and throw themselves and their families upon the wide world for support; going out, like their father Abraham, not knowing whither they went ? Was it in pursuit of worldly interest, that the brave assertors of chris

Serm. page 17, 39.

tian liberty, who stood by and patronised them, subjected themselves to the mercy of insatiable informers; had their houses rifled; their goods sold; were haled before insulting magistrates ; squeezed now in the spiritual, then in the civil courts; and while their bodies lay languishing in nasty goals, their families and estates bled under the wounds of fines, prosecutions, and extraordinary expence? Never, surely, were men more infatuated, if the accusation be true; but if it confutes itself, and carries falsehood in its face, never was an accuser more ungenerous, or more weak !

Through the goodness of God, and our wise rulers, the present followers of this noble army are not thus harrassed. But are we not severely censured and reviled, like the christians of old, a sect every where spoke against ? Are not all honours and preferments, both in church and in state, kept carefully from us? And if we will worship God according to what we think the scriptural mode, without mingling with it the injunctions and commandments of men, must it not be with additional expence? Are there any bishoprics, or dignities, or sinecures amongst us, whence hundreds, yea, thousands a year flow comfortably in upon us; which might tempt a man to warp a little, and strain a point of conscience, through a vicious indulgence of ease and sloth ? “ The number of officers and attendants belonging to archbishops, bishops, archdeacons, and cathedral deans only, in England, amount to more than twenty thousand persons, besides preaching ministers; and these receive for their maintenance, every year from the country, near a million of money.

And if the revenue only A brief view of Eccles. Jurisdic, addressed to Sir Nath. Curzon, printed 1733.--Since the above was first written the suin bas by varivus mcans been greatly augmented,

of these officers and altendants be so plenteous, how almost immense is that of the archbishopricks, bishopricks, deaneries, archdeaconries, &c. and parocbial livings, throughout the realm ? If the dissenters were men so“ in love with filthy lucre, “ and so devoted to worldly interest” as the sermons represent them, it is strange they do not put in for a share in this immense benevolence of their country; and endeavour to live at ease upon the sweat and labour of industrious people, as well as other me. That learned and pious foreigner, (Monsieur Jurieu) spoke not of the dissenters, when he said, “The religion of the church of England, is religion de benefice !"

And now, gentlemen, having made our defence before you, and pleaded not guilty to the higla crimes charged upon us; we humbly leave it to your judgment, whether we had not just grounds of complaint. The dissenters are not persons of so perverse a turn of mind as our accuser represents : they are ambitious of your favour, and desire to live in peace and amity with all men. AN they request is, liberty to worship God in that manner which they think most agreeable to his will; and to pay the homage of their conscience to Jesus its only sovereign : liberty to reject those things which were confessedly no part of God's worship in that church which Christ and his apostles established ; and humbly to presume, that no powers now on earth can establish a church upon a better or more perfect plan, nor worship in a more decent and orderly manner, than Christ and bis apostles did : this is all the liberty we ask. As for our brethren, who think the present humanly established forms better than the primitive, apostolic and divine ones, we wish them ever the fullest liberty to use them, and great religious improvement and success in their use.

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It will be said, perhaps, You have then the liberty you ask : nay, gentlemen, but you will give us leave to complain, and to insist upon it before you, that we have it not. For we have a right, (an unalienable fundamental right) by the constitution of the christian church, as brethren and fellow-christians to all good men in the establishment, to eat with them at the table or supper of our common Lord : it is a communion, or common table, which the great steward or lord in the house or church of God hath erected; and at this, all the children of this one family, all the servants of this one master, are invited, and bid to eat, both to strengthen and shew forth their communion in one body, and their love to one another. Now this is our complaint; that several members of this great family have formed themselves into a party, and made a law amongst themselves, that no member shall eat with them, who, besides the terms and qualifications made necessary by our common Lord, will not also submit to certain terms and qualifications laid down by themselves. This we take to be not only an invasion of the rights of all the other members of this great household, but directly tends to throw it into parties and confusion, and to destroy its order and peace. For by the same authority' by which some members clan together in one part, and refuse their brethren to eat with them, except in this posture, or in that dress, other members may do the same in another part of this great family, and insist upon some other terms from all who will eat with them. And thus the unity of the house is broke : they eat not at the Lord's table, i. e. at the common table their Lord hath erected, but at a separate table of their own erecting: and it is not the communion, i.e.

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the common supper of Christ they eat, but a supper of their own. They have destroyed its community, they forbid it to be common; and though the master bath left it open, for all his servants to come and eat at; they have inclosed and fenced it in by terms of their own devising ; so that it is not enough, that a man be a true servant of Christ, to entitle him to this bread of his house; he must be a servant also, and pay subjection to some authority besides Christ's, to qualify him for this supper.-Does not every one see that this is plainly schismatical ; that thus to come together is not to eat the Lord's supper, but a supper of their own, and that those who do thus, do hereby cut themselves off froin the communion of saints ?

We therefore beg leave to add, that the things in which we differ from our brethren of the establishment, are those, and only those, in which they differ (themselves being judges) from Christ and the Apostles. I they will please to lay aside, or to leave indifferent, those rites in God's worship which themselves perfectly know neither Christ, nor his apostles, nor the first christians ever used, and which they freely confess to be but commandments of men, the dissenters will be no more, the difference betwixt us will immediately cease.

But if we cannot be so happy as to eat with our brethren, and be owned by them as such according to our Lord's appointment at his common table on earth, it is our pleasure to be as. sured we shall shortly meet them in regions of greater calmness and light; and shall eat and drink with them at his table in his kingdon, without such uokind and unbrotherly restraints, There, we are sure, they will treat us with grea. ter candour; applaud what now they censure ;

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