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in a hair's' breadth of downright Antinomianism, which turns the holy truth of God into a licentious lie; whereas, nothing can be more inconsistent with truth, than that foul and filthy error. Am I in danger of error, while I receive the truth? or must I guard against wickedness, while I humbly submit to be ruled by that doctrine which is according to godliness ? I wish all our worldly prudence about guarding truth, and preaching it moderately, or soberly, as they call it, may not lead to something much worse, by producing ignorance, and indifference, which must ultimately terminate in corrupting, or giving up the whole,
Wor. Well Sir, nobody will suspect you of such sort of false fears, though I am sure you are quite as practical as you are evangelical.
Loveg. Yes Sir, and I hope I shall always feel it my duty, to dwell upon the practice which such principles must ever produce; for although the Gospel needs.no guarding, yet I should still call those unguarded preachers, who greatly injure the sacred cause, by such a neglect.
Wor. I think you good ministers of the gospel, have nothing to do, but to "contend earnestly for the faith, once delivered to the saints."
Loveg. Then Sir, we need not guard those holy truths, which God himself hath "delivered to the saints; and if delivered to the saints, it was designed of God, that we should be “sanctified by the truth.” Thus, , all this guarding the gospel seems to come home against the gospel itself. In my opinion, it is in itself
, a most unguarded expression ; no wonder if the bad consequences of these truths are suspected by others, while we seem to suspect them ourselves.
Wor. I do not know that Mr. Deliberate is by any means, such a great " guarder of the gospel" as Mr. Legal-definition is. I believe he knows much more of the truth, and is therefore much less afraid of preaching it, though his style of preaching renders him tedious and dull.
Loveg. When I was curate at Abley, there was a clergyman in these parts, who lived in a parish in your preaching, near to my honest warm-hearted friend Mr. Slapdash, called Mr. Slupdash ; and he seemed to be just the reverse of Mr. Deliberate. For while Mr. Slapdash scarcely dares speak at all, but as he continues looking at every expression again, and again, lest it should be otherwise than the most judicious and correct; Mr. Slapdash without any consideration whatever, will be pouring out vollies of the most disgustful nonsense. Notwithstanding the cold, plodding, phlegmatic disposition of Mr. Deliberate, may render him a heavy preacher, yet I had rather a thousand times attend on the good sense of the one, than the mere raphsody, and nonsense of the other.
Mrs. Wor. And so had I. But then it appears to me, that of two evils, I should only choose the less.
Mrs. Considerate asked Farmer Littleworth how he liked the sermon, and he said, "Ah madam, to my liking, our own dear minister out-tops them all. This gentleman has so many heads, and tails, and so many tops, and bottoms to his sermons, that we country folk can scarce know how to make him out.” And poor Thomas Newman said, while Mr. Deliberate was splitting his heads, that by attending to him, he thought his own head would have been split at the sarne time.
Loveg. Why, half the skill of preaching to a country congregation
Wor. [Interrupts.] Aye, and to a city congrogation too, for not one in ten of them, is wiser than ourselves.
Loveg. I quite agree with you Sir. But I was going to observe, that half the skill of preaching is, to bring truth home to the lowest capacity of our hearers; and while we attempt to make them wise unto salvation, the world will certainly call it " the foolishness of preaching ;” but still it will be widely different from foolish preaching. While we can preach with "simplicity, and godly sincerity, and not witha fleshly wisdom," we may expect the same blessing which attended the ministry of St. Paul. He tells ns plainly, how he went to work : “And I, brethren, when I came unto you, came not with excellency of speech, and of wisdom, declaring to you the testimony of God; for I was determined to know nothing among you, save Jesus Christ, and him crucified ; and my speech, and my preaching, was not with the enticing words of man's wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit, and of power:" and what a noble reason he adds to all this, " lest your faith should stand in the wisdom of man, and not in the power of God.”
Wor. But Sir, I think Mr. Deliberate does not aim at what some fulsome pretended orators suppose to be the excellency of speech or wisdom.
Loveg. I quite agree with you Sir ; and I did not quote that passage from scripture as immediately levelling its meaning against one of his discription. Mr. Deliberate is a good man, and a man of learning, and thought, and our natural dispositions all widely differ from each other.
Wor. Just so I conceive of matters. But I am so much interested to hear the result of your journey to Locksbury, that I must beg leave to interrupt the present conversation, and make some enquiries about that event.
Loveg. Oh Sir! the nearer the poor widow came towards Locksbury, the more her mind was agitated and distressed. I thought she would have lost her reason a second time.
Wor. I suppose that her feelings must have been keen indeed. I am almost afraid to ask, what was the result of the first interview.
Loveg. Sir, the people of the inn, when we alighted, immediately knew who she was, and there was an immediate buz about the house ; I therefore requested, that she might be shewn into some back room, where she sat, more agitated, and affected, than I can well express ; and there I left her while I went and apprised her father of her arrival When I came into his house, and told him who I was, how he trembled, and wept, and in what strong terms of gratitude he expressed himself, for all the attention paid to his daughter! He wanted to go with me immediately, to conduct her to his house, but I objected to this plan, as I thought this first interview, which was likely to be a very affecting one, had better not take place in a public house. He immediately saw the propriety of my objection; it was therefore judged best, that I should return and conduct her to her father's house.
Mrs. Wor. Oh! what a painful oflice this must have been! I wish Sir Charles had been there to have seen the consequences of his abominable, and brutal conduct.
Loveg. Why madam, it is supposed that miserable creature is now no more.
Mrs. Wor. What is he dead ?
Loveg. It is strongly reported about Locksbury, that soon after Mrs. Chipman left him, he went over to Ireland, where he thought it might be more convenient to assume another name ; and there, fighting a duel with one of the same stamp with himself, he
upon the spot.* But as for such monsters, * Report at present only says, that after Sir Charles had worn out the credit of his own name in England, he went over to Ireland, where he assumed the name of Mr. M'Fury: There he met with a military wild Irishman, with whom he picked a quarrel about some of their wild intrigues ; on this account they met, and according to the style of our modern polite darbarians, (called however, among themselves, men of honor,) they fought a duel ; the Captain proved the better marksman, and shot Sir Charles nearly dead upon the spot. He had only time to utter two or three most profane expressions, and spoke
Is it not, however, high time, that the magistracy of the nation should resume the dignity of their office; and no longer suffer these umpires of their own disputes to proceed, without afterwards conferring upon them the dignity of the halter? I question if this honor, twice, or thrice conferi'd would not prove an effectual remedy to so terrible a disease.
When the whole race of such Duellers, find they are lizble to be hanged as intentional murderers, for presuming to settle