WE agree with other professors of the Christian name, in the belief oi
one eternal God, the Creator and Preserver of the universe ; and in Jesus
Christ his Son, the Messiah, and Mediator of the new covenant. (a)
When we speak of the gracious display of the love of God to mankind,
in the miraculous conception, birth, life, miracles, death, resurrection, and
ascension of our Saviour, we prefer the use of such terms as we find in
scripture ; and contented with that knowledge which divine wisdom hath
seen meet to reveal, we attempt not to explain those mysteries which re.
main under the veil ; nevertheless we acknowledge and assert the divinity
of Christ, who is the wisdom and power of God unto salvation. (I)
To Christ alone we give the title of the Word of God,(c) and not to the
scriptures; although we highly esteem these sacred writings, in subordi
nation to the Spirited) from which they were given forth ; and we hold,
with the apostle Paul, that they are able to make wise unto salvation,
through faith which is in Christ Jesus. (e)
We reverence those most excellent precepts which are recorded in scrip.
ture to have been delivered by our great Lord, and we firmly believe that
they are practicable, and binding on every Christian ; and that in the life
to come, every man will be rewarded according to his works. (f) And
further it is our belief, that, in order to enable mankind to put in practice
these sacred precepts, many of which are contradictory to the unregener-
* [Dr. MosheMs account of the Quakers mary of the History, Doctrine, and Disci-
is so very faulty, that the American editions pline of Friends, written at the desire of the
of the work have generally been accompa- Yearly Meeting for Sufferings in London ;"
nied with other statements, derived from oth- first published in a small work, by Joseph
er and better authorities. In the preceding Gurncy Bevan, Lond., 1800, 12mo, and af-
notes, many of the mistakes of Dr. Mosheim terwards annexed to the 4th vol. of Mac-
have been pointed out. But still it is be- laine s Mosheim, ed. New- York, 1824.
lieved, that full justice will not be done to Tr.]
the principles of this sect, without allowing (a) Heb. xii , 24. (b) 1 Corinth, i., 24.
them to express tneir religious views in their (c) John i., 1. (d) 2 Pet. i. 21. (s) 9
own language. The following Supplement Tim. iii., 15. (/) Mat. xvi., 27.
la therefore annexed, being part of $ " Sum-
s62 BOOK IV. CENT. XVIL SEC. II. PART II. CHAP. IV.
ate will of man,(g) every man coming into the world, is endued with a
measure of light, grace, or good Spirit of Christ ; by which, as it is attend,
ed to, he is enabled to distinguish good from evil, and to correct the disor.
derly passions and corrupt propensities of his nature, which mere reason
is altogether insufficient to overcome. For all that belongs to man is fal
lible, and within the reach of temptation ; but this divine grace, which
uomes by him who hath overcome the world, (h) is, to those who humbly
ilid sincerely seek it, an all-sufficient and present help in time of need.
By this, the snares of the enemy are detected, his allurements avoided, and
deliverance is experienced through faith in its effectual operation : where
by the soul is translated out of the kingdom of darkness, and from under the
power of Satan, into the marvellous light and kingdom of the Son of God.
Being thus persuaded that man, without the Spirit of Christ inwardly re
vealed, can do nothing to the glory of God, or to effect his own salvation ;
we think this influence especially necessary to the performance of the
highest act of which the human mind is capable ; even the worship of the
Father of lights and of spirits, in spirit and in truth : therefore we consider
as obstructions to pure worship, all forms which divert the attention of the
mind from the secret influence of this unction from the Holy One.(?)
Yet, although true worship is not confined to time and place, we think it in-
cumbent on Christians to meet often together,(&) in testimony of their depend-
ance on the Heavenly Father, and for a renewal of their spiritual strength :
nevertheless, in the performance of worship, we dare not depend, for our ac
ceptance with him, on a formal repetition of the words and experiences
of others ; but we believe it to be our duty to lay aside the activity of the
imagination, and to wait in silence to have a true sight of our condition be
stowed upon us : believing even a single sigh,(Z) arising from such a sense
of oui infirmities, and the need we have of divine help, to be more accept
able to God, than any performances, however specious, which originate in
the will of man.
From what has been said respecting worship, it follows that the ministry
we approve must have its origin from the same source : for that which is
needful for man s own direction, and for his acceptance with God,(m)
must be eminently so to enable him to be helpful to others. Accordingly
we believe that the renewed assistance of the light and power of Christ, is
indispensably necessary for all true ministry ; and that this holy influ
ence is not at. our command, or to be procured by study, but is the free gift of
God to chosen and devoted servants. Hence arises our testimony against
preaching for hire, in contradiction to Christ s positive command, " Freely
ye have received, freely give ;"(w) and hence our conscientious refusal to
support such ministry, by tithes or other means.
As we dare not encourage any ministry, but that which we belie~\e to
spring from the influence of the Holy Spirit, so neither dare we attempt to
restrain this influence to persons of any condition in life, or to the male sex
alone ; but, as male and female are one in Christ, we allow such of the fe
male sex as we believe to be endued with a right qualification for the min
istry, to exercise their gifts for the general edification of the church : and
this liberty we esteem a peculiar mark of the gospel dispensation, as fore,
told by the prophet Joel,(o) and noticed by the apostle Peter. (p)
(gO John i., 9. (K) Ibid, xvi., 33. (? ) 1 John ii., 20^27. (fc) Heb. x.,25. (/) Rom. viii..
SG. (m) Jer. xxiii., 30-32. () Matt, x., 8. (o) Joel ii., 28, 29. (p) Acts ii., 16, 17.
SUPPLEMENT CONCERNING THE QUAKERS. 463
There are two ceremonies in use among most professors of the Christian
name, Water-baptism, and what is termed the Lord s Supper. The first
of these is generally esteemed the essential means of initiation into the
church of Christ; and the latter of maintaining communion with him.
But as we have been convinced, that nothing short of his redeeming
power, inwardly revealed, can set the soul free from the thraldom of sin ;
by this power alone we believe salvation to be effected. We hold that as
there is one Lord and one faith^) so his baptism is one, in nature and
operation ; that nothing short of it can make us living members of hia
mystical body ; and that the baptism with water, administered by his fore
runner John, belonged, as the latter confessed, to an inferior and decreasing
With respect to the other rite, we believe that communion between
Christ and his church is not maintained by that, nor any other external
performance, but only by a real participation of his divine nature(s) through
faith ; that this is the supper alluded to in the Revelation, (t) " Behold I
stand at the door and knock ; if any man hear my voice, and open the door,
I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me ;" and that where
the substance is attained, it is unnecessary to attend to the shadow ; which
doth not confer grace, and concerning which, opinions so different, and
animosities so violent, havo arisen.
Now, as we thus believe that the grace of God, which comes by Jesus
Christ, is alone sufficient for salvation, we can neither admit that it is con-
ferrcd on a few only, while others are left without it ; nor, thus asserting
its universality, can we limit its operation to a partial cleansing of the soul
from sin, even in this life. We entertain worthier notions both of the
power and goodness of our heavenly Father, and believe that he doth
vouchsafe to assist the obedient to experience a total surrender .of the
natural will, to the guidance of his pure unerring spirit ; through whose
renewed assistance they are enabled to bring forth fruits unto holiness,
and to stand perfect in their present rank.(w)
There are not many of our tenets more generally known than our tes
timony against Oaths, and against War. With respect to the former of
these, we abide literally by Christ s positive injunction, delivered in his
sermon on the mount, "Swear not at all."(u) From the same sacred col
lection of the most excellent precepts of moral and religious duty, from
the example of our Lord himseif,(w?) and from the correspondent convic
tions of his Spirit in our hearts, we are confirmed in the belief that wars
and fightings are, in their origin and effects, utterly repugnant to the gos.
pel ; which still breathes peace and good-will to men. We also are clearly
of the judgment, that if the benevolence of the gospel were generally prev
alent in the minds of men, it would effectually prevent them from oppressing,
much more enslaving, their brethren (of whatever colour or complexion),
for whom, as for themselves, Christ died ; and would even influence their
conduct in their treatment of the brute creation : which would no longer
groan, the victims of their avarice, or of their false ideas of pleasure.
Some of our tenets have in former times, as hath been shown, subjected
our friends to much suffering from government, though to the salutary
(<?) Eph. iv., 5. (r) John iii., 30. () 2 Pet. i., 4. (t) Rev. viii., 20. (u) Matt. v..
48, Eph. iv., 13 ; Col. iv., 12. (v) Matt, v., 34. (w) Matt, v., 39, 44, &c. ; ch. xxvi.,
52, 53 . Lulis xxii., 51 ; John xviii., 11.
464 BOOK IV. CENT. XVII -SEC. II. PART II. CHAP. IV
purposes of government, our principles are a security. They inculcate
submission to the laws in all cases wherein consciene is not violated. But
we hold, that as Christ s kingdom is not of this world, it is not the business
of the civil magistrate to interfere in matters of religion ; but to maintain
the external peace and good order of the community. We therefore think
persecution, even in the smallest degree, unwarrantable. We are careful
in requiring our members not to be concerned in illicit trade, nor in any
manner to defraud the revenue.
It is well known that the society, from its first appearance, has disused
those names of the months and days, which having been given in honour
of the heroes or false gods of the heathen, originated in their flattery or
superstition ; and the custom of speaking to a single person in the plural
number, as having arisen also from motives of adulation. Compliments,
superfluity of apparel and furniture, outward shows of rejoicing and mourn
ing, and the observation of days and times, we esteem to be incompatible
with the simplicity and sincerity of a Christian life ; and public diversions,
gaming, and other vain amusements of the world, we cannot but condemn.
They are a waste of that time which is given us for nobler purposes ; and
divert the attention of the mind from the sober duties of life, and from the
reproofs of instruction, by which we are guided to an everlasting inherit,
To conclude, although we have exhibited the several tenets which distin
guish our religious society, as objects of our belief; yet we are sensible
that a true and living faith is not produced in the mind of man by his own
effort ; but is the free gift of God(x) in Christ Jesus, nourished and in
creased by the progressive operation of his Spirit in our hearts, and our
proportionate obedience, (y) Therefore, although for the preservation of
the testimonies given us to bear, and for the peace and good order of the
society, we deem it necessary that those who are admitted into member
ship with us, should be previously convinced of those doctrines which we
esteem essential ; yet we require no formal subscription to any articles,
either as a condition of membership, or a qualification for the service of
the church. We prefer the judging of men by their fruits, and depending
on the aid of Him, who, by his prophet, hath promised to be " a spirit of
judgment to him that sitteth in judgment. "(2) Without this, there is a
danger of receiving members into outward communion, without any addi
tion to that spiritual sheepfold, whereof our blessed Lord declared him.
self to be both the door and the shepherd :(a) that is, such as know his voice,
and follow him in the paths of obedience.
(2) Eph. ii., 8. (y) John vii., 17. () Isaiah aaviii., 6. (a) John z., 7, 11
SUPPLEMENT CONCERNING THE QUAKERS, 465
Its Purposes. Meetings for Discipline. MONTHLY-MEETINGS. Poor. Convinced Fer-
pons. Certificates of Removal. Overseers. Mode of dealing with Offenders. _ Ar
bitration. Marriages. Births and Burials. QUARTERLY-MEETINGS. Queries. Ap
peals. THE YEARLY-MEETING. Women s Meetings. Meetings of Ministers and
Elders. Certificates to Ministers. THE MEETING FOR SUFFERINGS. Conclusion.
THE purposes which our discipline hath chiefly in view, are, the relief
of the poor, the maintenance of good order, the support of the testi
monies which we believe it is our duty to bear to the world, and the help
and recovery of such as are overtaken in faults.
In the practice of discipline, we think it indispensable that the order
recommended by Christ himself be invariably observed :(a) " If thy brother
shall trespass against thee, go and tell him his fault between thee and him
alone : if he shall hear thee, thou hast gained thy brother ; but if he will
not hear thee, then take with thee one or two more, that in the mouth of
two or three witnesses, every word may be established : and if he shall
neglect to hear them, tell it unto the church."
To effect the salutary purposes of discipline, meetings were appointed,
at an early period of the society, which, from the times of their being held,
were called Quarterly-meetings. It was afterwards found expedient(Z?) to
divide the districts of those meetings, and to meet more frequently ; from
whence arose Monthly-meetings, subordinate to those held quarterly. At
length, in 1669,(c) a Yearly meeting was established, to superintend, as
sist, and provide rules for, the whole : previously to which, general meet
ings had been occasionally held.
A Monthly-meeting is usually composed of several particular congrega
tions,^) situated within a convenient distance from each other. Its busi
ness is to provide for the subsistence of the poor, and for the education of
their offspring ; to judge of the sincerity and fitness of persons appearing
to be convinced of the religious principles of the society, and desiring to
be admitted into membership ;(e) to excite due attention to the discharge
of religious and moral duty ; and to deal with disorderly members. Month
ly-Meetings also grant to such of their members as remove into other
monthly-Meetings certificates of their membership and conduct; without
which they cannot gain membership in such meetings. Each Monthly-
meeting is required to appoint certain persons, under the name of over
seers, who are to take care that the rules of our discipline be put in practice ;
(a) Matt, xviii., 15-17. (&) Sewel, 485. (e) On application of this kind, a small
(c) Fox, 390. committee is appointed to visit the party,
(d) Where this is the case, it is usual for and report to the Monthly-meeting ; which
the members of each congregation to form is directed by our rules not to admit any inta
what is called a Preparative-meeting, because membership, without allowing a seasoi.abli
its business is to prepare whatever may oc- time to consider their conduct.
cur among themselves, to be laid before the
VOL. III. N N N
406 BOOK IV. CENT. XVII. SEC. II. -PART II. CHAP. IV.
and when any case of complaint, or disorderly conduct, comes to their knowl.
edge, to see that private admonition, agreeably to the gospel rule before
mentioned, be given, previously to its being laid before the Monthly-meeting
When a case is introduced, it is usual for a small committee to be ap.
pointed, to visit the offender, to endeavour to convince him of his error
and to induce him to forsake and condemn it.(jf ) If they succeed, the per-
son is by minute declared to have made satisfaction for the offence ; if not,
he is disowned as a member of the society, (g)
In disputes between individuals, it has long been the decided judgment
of the society, that its members should not sue each other at law. It there
fore enjoins all to end their differences by speedy and impartial arbitration,
agreeably to rules laid down. If any refuse to adopt this mode, or, having
adopted it, to submit to the award, it is the direction of the Yearly-meeting
that such be disowned.
To Monthly-meetings also belongs the allowing of marriages ; for our
society hath always scrupled to acknowledge the exclusive authority of
the priests in the solemnization of marriage. Those who intend to marry,
appear together, and propose their intention to the Monthly-meeting ; and
if not attended by their parents and guardians, produce a written certificate
of their consent, signed in the presence of witnesses. The meeting then ap
points a committee to inquire whether they be clear of other engagements
respecting marriage ; and if at a subsequent meeting, to which the parties
also come and declare the continuance of their intention, no objections be
reported, they have the meeting s consent to solemnize their intended mar.
riage. This is done in a public meeting for worship, towards the close
whereof the parties stand up, and solemnly take each other for husband
and wife. A certificate of the proceedings is then publicly read, and signed
by the parties, and after-wards by the relations and others as witnesses.
Of such marriage the Monthly-meeting keeps a record ; as also of the
births and burials of its members. A certificate of the date, of the name
of the infant, and of its parents, signed by those present at the birth, is the
subject of one of these last-mentioned records ; and an order for the inter
ment, countersigned by the gravemaker, of the other. The naming of chil.
dren is without ceremony. Burials are also conducted in a simple manner.
The body, followed by the relations and friends, is sometimes, previously
to interment, carried to a meeting ; and at the grave a pause is generally
made ; on both which occasions it frequently falls out, that one or m >re
friends present have somewhat to express for the edification of those who
attend ; but no religious rite is considered as an essential part of burial.
Several Monthly-meetings compose a Quarterly-meeting. At the Quar.
tcrly-mceting are produced written answers from the Monthly-meetings,
to certain queries respecting the conduct of their members, and the meet
ings care over them. The accounts thus received, are digested into one,
which is sent, also in the form of answers to queries, by representatives,
to the Yearly-meeting. Appeals from the judgment of Monthly-meetings,
are brought to the Quarterly-meetings ; whose business also it is to assist
(/)This is generally done by a written ac- have led to it ; next, the means unavailingly
knowl edcjment, signed by the offender. used to reclaim the offender; after that, a
(^)This is done by what is termed a Tes- clause disowning him ; to which is usually
timonyof Denial : which is a paper reciting added an expression of desire for his repent-
!he offence, and sometimes the steps which ance^n for his being restored to membership.
SUPPLEMENT CONCERNING THE QUAKERS. 487
in any difficult case, or where remissness appears in the care of the Month,
ly-meetings over the individuals who compose them.
The Yearly-meeting has the general superintendence of the society in
the country in which it is established ;(&) and therefore, as the accounts
which it receives discover the state of inferior meetings, as particular exi
gences require, or as the meeting is impressed with a sense of duty, it gives
forth its advice, makes such regulations as appear to be requisite, or ex-
ciies to the observance of those already made ; and sometimes appoints
committees to visit those Quarterly-meetings which appear to be in need
of immediate advice. Appeals from the judgment of Quarterly-meetings
are here finally determined ; and a brotherly correspondence, by epistles,
is maintained with other Yearly-meetings. (i)
In this place it is proper to add, that, as we believe that women may be
rightly called to the work of the ministry, we also think that to them belongs
a share in the support of our Christian discipline ; and that some parts of
it, wherein their own sex is concerned, devolve on them with peculiar
propriety ; accordingly they have Monthly, Quarterly, and Yearly-meetings
of their own sex, held at the same time and in the same place with those
of the men ; but separately, and without the power of making rules ; and
it may be remarked that during the persecutions, which in the last century
occasioned the imprisonment of so many of the men, the care of the poor
often fell on the women, and was by them satisfactorily administered.
In order that those who are in the situation of ministers may have the
tender sympathy and council of those of either sex,(j) who, by their ex
perience in the work of religion, are qualified for that service, the Monthly-
meetings are advised to select such under the denomination of Elders.
These, and ministers approved by their Monthly-meetings,(A;) have meetings
peculiar to themselves, called Meetings of Ministers and Elders ; in which
they have an opportunity of exciting each other to a discharge of their
several duties, and of extending advice to those who may appear weak,
without any needless exposure. Such meetings are generally held in the
compass of each Monthly, Quarterly, and Yearly-meeting. They are con
ducted by rules prescribed by the Yearly-meeting, and have no authority
to make any alteration or addition to them. The members of them unite
with their brethren in the Meetings for discipline, and are equally account-
able to the latter for their conduct.
It is to a meeting of this kind in London, called the Second day s Morn
ing-meeting, that the revisal of manuscripts concerning our principles,
previously to publication, is intrusted by the Yearly-meeting held in Lon
don ; and also the granting, in the intervals of the Yearly-meeting, of
certificates of approbation to such ministers as are concerned to travel in
the work of the ministry in foreign parts ; in addition to those granted by
their Monthly and Quarterly-meetings. When a visit of this kind doth
(A.) There are seven Yearly-meetings, viz., their Monthly-meetings ; but time is taken
1 London, to which come representatives for judgment, that the meeting may be satis-
from Ireland, 2 New-England, 3 New- York, fied of their call and qualification. It will
4 Pennsylvania and New-Jersey, 5 Mary- also sometimes happen, that such as are not
land, f Virginia, 7 the Carolinas and Georgia, approved, will obtrude themselves as minis-
(?) See the last note. (;) Fox, 461, 492. ters, to the grief of their brethren ; but much
() Those who believe themselves required forbearance is used towards these, before the
to speak in meetings for worship, are not disapprobation of the meeting is publicly
immediately acknowledged as ministers bv testified.
4G8 BOOK IV. CENT. XVII. SEC. II. PART II. CHAP. IV.
not extend beyond Great Britain, a certificate from the Monthly-mee Jng ol
which the minister is a member is sufficient ; if to Ireland, the concurrence
of the Quarterly-meeting is also required. Regulations of similar tendency
obtain in other Yearly-meetings.
The Yearly-meeting of London, in the year 1675, appointed a meeting to
be held in that city, for the purpose of advising and assisting in cases of suf
fering for conscience sake, which hath continued with great use to the
society to this day. It is composed of friends under the name of cor-
respondents, chosen by the several Quarterly-meetings, and who reside in
or near the city. The same meetings also appoint members of their own
in the country as correspondents, who are to join their brethren in London
on emergency. The names of ail these correspondents, previously to
their being recorded as such, are submitted to the approbation of the