Benjamin Hoadly.

An Answer to the representation drawn up by the Committee of the Lower-House of Convocation : concerning several dangerous positions and doctrines contain'd in the Bishop of Bangor's Preservative and online

. (page 1 of 22)
Online LibraryBenjamin HoadlyAn Answer to the representation drawn up by the Committee of the Lower-House of Convocation : concerning several dangerous positions and doctrines contain'd in the Bishop of Bangor's Preservative and → online text (page 1 of 22)
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'->»,■•* efenfe^
("which I promised publickly as foon as
poffible,) is, I hope, an Unanfwcmble Ar-
gument to the JVorld.

And I muft here take the Liberty to add,
becaufe I can add it with a fafe Conlci-
ence, and fecurely fpeak it before the
whole World, that I never have, upon a-
ny Occafion, diredly or indiredly, by
My-felf or Others, by plain Words or the
mod diftant Intimation, exprefs'd the
leaft Defire that Any Thing fhould be op-
posed to Argument^ but Argument ; nor e-
ver, with refped; to Any Perfons diflfering
from Me in their Sentiments, have had
Any other Wifli in My Heart, but that
They and I might be heard, and read, by
A 5 the

vi The Preface.

the Worlds with Equal Impartiality, and
Equal Regard, and Equal Advantage.

As to the Troromtion of the Convocation :
it neither tends to hinder Any Light from
appearing, which poffibly can be procured :
nor can It have fuch anE{fed:,in its natural
Confeqi^ences ; but the Contrary. For. the
Debate is, by this Means, taken from the
Bar of Jiumane Authoritj ; and brought to
TJMt o^Reafon and Scriptcre: removed from
a Trial by Majority of Voices ; ("which can-
not be a Trial to be contended for either
by Truths or by the Church of England ;)
and brought to That of Argur^ient only.
And certainly, No Chrijlian or Troteflant
can juilly and confiftently find Fault with


TheControverfy is rather more exposed

to Light ^ than probably it would otherwife

have been. The Matter now lies before the

World. T\\t Appeal 1% made to the Judg-

raent of AH:, who are equally concerned.


The Preface. vii

The Members of the Committee^ and All
other Meo;, have the fame Right to pub-
liili Their Thoughts^ as I have^, to publifh
Mine. And I confefs;, I think it to be the
"Duty of Thofe Worthy Terfons who began
. This ^ehate^ to lay their Sentiments again
. before the World. I am fo far from vvilh-
ing to difcourage it^ that I would rather
invite and perfuade Them to it. And I
can truly fay that I rejoyce as fincerely in
the Liberty We enjoy in this Nation^, w^hen
it is made ufe of, in a Chrijlian Way, a-
gainfl My own Dodrines, as when it is
ufed/^r Them ; becaufe it tends^both to
difcover what is True^ and at length to fix
it in the Minds of Men.

In the 'Defcnfe of Any 'Do(^rines or To-
fitions^ againft ObjeclionSy Every Writer in
the World always claims the Common
Right of Interpreting His own Sentences,
or Expreffions, by Others of His own
Sentences^ and Expreffions : And We find
A 4. All

viii The P r E F A e e.

All Men conftantly complaining, (and
particularly Some who have already ap-
peared againft Me^ in this Controverjy^
when They imagine Themfelves not to be
treated, even with Equity and Allowance^
in the Interpretation of Their own Words.
I hope therefore;, A Right of a leffer Na-
ture^ which may be claimed in Stri6l Ju^
fiice^ will not be denied to Me ; the Right
of knowing My ow^n Trinciples^ and My
own 'DeJIgnj better than Any one elfe ;
and of explaining My-felf according to
Them ; and confidently with All My
own Plaineft and Cleareft Declarations in
the fame Difcourfes, and all made ufe of
confeffedly to the fame Purpofes. This I
can fay. That I have put no Ne^ Senfe
upon My Words ; that I have fix'd No
Meaning upon Any of My Expreffions, but
That^ of which They are not only as eajily
capable, as of any Other ; but which is
indeed the only Meanings of which They


The Preface. ix

are capable, agreeably to All My other
moft o^cnEx^reJ/ions yoitht Senfe of which
there has been^ and can be, no Doubt.
Nor have I invented ¥rinci^les lince, to
fupport what I had faid ; but laid before
the World Thofe very Trmci^les^ which
led me firft to lay, what I now defend.
And indeed, lb far I have been from find'
ing realbn to evade^ or to dra^w back ; that
I have found great, and^ to Me^ irrefiftible
Arguments to ^'^ejs forauard ; and to open
and unfold the T>o6lnnes flowing from
Thofe Trinci^lesy much more widely, and
unrefervedly, than I had before done.

I defign that this Book (hall be followed,
as foon as conveniently may be, with a
Large CoUe^ion^ out of the moft famous
ChnHian Writers ^ both of This and For-
mer Ages, who have embraced and pub-
lickly profefs'd the fame T)o6lrines^ for
which I have been treated with fo much
Severity : Not to induce Any Terfons to


X The P R E F A C E.

receive what I have taught^, for the fake
oi Great Mames^ or upon that Argument of
Authority^ which I as truly difdain^ in My
own Caufe^ as I vfill ever heartily opppfe
it in that of Others ^ hut to fhew Thofey
who appear to build much upon it^ and to
make fo great Ufe of it againft AU who
ditfer from Them^ that I am not Alone ;
but that the Candemnation of Me^ is the
Condemnation of a Cloud of much greater
Witnejfes to the fame Truths; and of Mul-
titudes of truly Great and Good Men,
many of whofe Names areprofefs'd to be
had in Veneration, even by Thoje them-
ielveSj who thus treat their Doctrines.

If the Members of the Committee fliall
think it proper to concurr in the fame Pub-
lic Ticfenje of the Reprefentation'^ I fuppoie,
it muft be underftood that They are Ail of
One Mindy in what ihall be faid in it: un-
lefs They exprefly remark The Toints^ in
which They differ from One Another^ as


The Preface. xi

well as Thofe in which They differ from
Me -y^ind the fevered Trinci^ks, upon Vv^hich
T\\ey feveraUy go. For this is a very ma-
terial Point, equally neceflary for the Dif-
covery o( Truth, and for their ading equi-
tably and juftly by Thofe 'DoBrines, which
They feem to the World unanimoufly to
oppofe. As I hope, I have made Ufe of
No Ex^reJJions, in the following Tages,
which can juftly give Them Offenfe : lb
I affure them 1 fhall ever kindly receive
Their Sentiments and Arguments, and en-
deavour to make that Ufe of them only
which becomes a Taver of I mth.

As for the Ufage, I have experlenc'd
from fome Tulpts; which for the fake of
Religion, I would hide from the Know-
ledge of the Whole World, were it not
impoffible : I forgive, on My Part, Tkfife
who have allow'd Themfelves in it.
Whether They will forgive Themfelves,
when They come to fearch Their own


xii The P r e f a c e.^

Hearts-^ and to confider ferioufly this Part
of their Condud:^ before God ; I know
not. But if Any of My Lords the BiJho^Sy
in whofe T>'toceJes This is done^ can think
it for the Honour of God^ for the Intereft
of Chrift's Rehgion^ or for the Reputati-
on of the Church of England-^ that, inftead
of preaching the Tlain La^ws of the Gof^el^
or confuting, in a manner becoming Chri-
ftians, the Trinci^les and ^oBrines which
They judge to be pernicious ; [a Right
which I pray God They may ever enjoy !]
the Terfons of Men fhould be pointed out;
the moft Undifputed Laws of the Gofpel
fhould be broke ; One of the Beft and
moft Chriftian Orders in this Church,
whofe Caufe is pretended to be pleaded,'
fhould be openly and notorioufly violated;
a^id fuch a Method of Preaching fhould
be introduced, as muft at length weary
out ^// Sober and ConJIdering Chriftians, of
Every Sort ; If Any of My Lords the Bi-


The Preface. xiii

Jhop:, I fay, can think All this for the Ser-
vice and Glory of Religion ; 1 mirft be
content to bear My Burthen. But I know
My own Hearty that^ where-ever My In-
fluence could reach^ I would not, for All
the Party- Advantages of this World, per-
mit the Bitterejl Enemy I ever had to be
thus treated : And I thank God, I can fafe-
ly appeal to My own Practice in this Cafe,
That I have ever confcientioufly avoided
to fet Any Men fuch an Example. If not
for My lake, yet methinks for the fake of
Our Common Mafter ; of our Common
Chriftianity; and of tliQ Church of England
it felf; fome Check Ihould be given tofo
open an Immorality, and fo Great a Scan^
dal: which if it goes on increafing, muft
deftroy not only Jll Religion^ but All 2)^-
cency and A^^earance of it.

But if, inftead of Argument and Reafon^
I am ftill to meet with Terfonal Affronts
and Indignities^ never before, as far as I


xi V The Preface.

can remember^ thus introduced as a Me-
thod of Controverjy ; and if the Ar^ger of
Me'n be ftill to be calFd in^ and to pro-
ceed farther and farther : I can only de-
clare to the Whole World^ that I have u-
fed My Beft Endeavours to ferve a Cazifey
upon which the Gof^el^ the Reformation^
and the Chtrch of Evgland^ as v^ell as the
Common Rights of Mankind^ entirely de^
pend; that^, having done this^ I make My-
felf as eafy as I can^ v^ith the Ifiiie and E-
vent of Things ; that it is a Caufe^ m
which I could more willingly fpend the
Reft of My Life ; and a Caufe^ in which
I could^ with more certain and well-
grounded Satisfaftion^ fuffer All that this
World can bring, upon Me^ than in Anj^
with which I havie ever yet been acquaint-
ed. I have done^ and refolve to do^ Eve-
ry thing in My Pow^r^^ for its Support.
And I now offer up the Whole of what I
have done^ and can do;, to tlie Glory of


The Preface. xv

God; the Honour of Chriftianity; the Iiv
tereft of the Reformation ; and the Good
of Humane Society.


Some E R RA T A.

PAG E ^, tine ^l- for lies read lie. /). 9. /♦ 8. read . 60. /. 15^ 16. re^^/ KveM^ovTr^
and 'Hy^i^oi- p. 98. /. ii. de/e to. /). 104. /. 3 1 . for join'd 7-^^^
joins. /). 114. /. u/f. read Excellency, p. 118. /. ////. after EfFcifts
add may. p. 130. /. 1$. read ChviU's. p. 268. /. 3. /

1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22

Online LibraryBenjamin HoadlyAn Answer to the representation drawn up by the Committee of the Lower-House of Convocation : concerning several dangerous positions and doctrines contain'd in the Bishop of Bangor's Preservative and → online text (page 1 of 22)