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not him who eateth not, judge him who eateth; for God hath received him. Who art thou that judgest another man's servant? To his own master he standeth or falleth. Yea, he shall be holden up; for God is able to make him stand." In the same manner, in the next chapter of the same Epistle, after reminding the strong that it is their duty to bear the infirmities of the weak, he adds, "Wherefore receive ye one another, as Christ also hath received us to the glory of the Father." If such is the reason assigned for mutual toleration, and it is acknowledged to be a sufficient one, which none can deny without impeaching the inspiration of the writer, it is as conclusive respecting the obligation of tolerating every error which is consistent with a state of salvation, as if that error had been mentioned by name; and as few, if any, are to be met with who doubt the piety of many Pædobaptists, it not only justifies their reception, but renders it an indispensable duty. Nothing can be more futile than the attempt to turn aside the edge of this reasoning, by remarking that there is no mention of baptism, and that this is not the subject of which St. Paul is treating, as though the Bible contained no general principles, no maxims of universal application, but that precise directions must be found for every possible emergence that in the lapse of ages may occur. Were it constructed upon this plan, the Bible must be infinitely more voluminous that the statutes at large. It is composed on one widely different: it gives general rules of action, broad principles, leaving them to be applied under the guidance of sound discretion; and wherever it has decided a doubtful question, accompanied with an express statement of the principle on which the decision is founded, such explanation has all the force of an apostolic canon, by which we are bound to regulate our conduct in all the variety of cases to which it applies. Hence we have only one alternative, either to deny that those who differ from us on the subject of baptism are accepted of God, or to receive them into fellowship, on exactly the same ground, and on the same principle, that Paul enjoined the toleration of sincere Christians.

Before I dismiss this part of the subject, on which the patience of the reader has been severely tasked, I must beg leave to notice a striking inconsistence in the advocates of strict communion. Nothing is more certain than that the communion of saints, is by no means confined to one particular occasion, or limited to one transaction, such as that of assembling around the Lord's table; it extends to all the modes by which believers recognize each other, as the members of a common head. Every expression of fraternal regard, every participation in the enjoyments of social worship, every instance of the unity of the Spirit exerted in prayer and supplication, or in acts of Christian sympathy and friendship,

as truly belongs to the communion of saints, as the celebration of the eucharist. In truth, if we are strangers to communion with our fellow Christians on other occasions, it is impossible for us to enjoy it there; for the mind is not a piece of mechanism which can be set agoing at pleasure, whose movements are obedient to the call of time and place. Nothing short of an habitual sympathy of spirit, springing from the cultivation of benevolent feeling, and the interchange of kind offices, will secure that reciprocal delight, that social pleasure, which is the soul of Christian communion. Its richest fruits are frequently reserved for private conference, like that in which the two disciples were engaged, in their way to Emmaus, when their hearts burned within them, while the Lord opened to them the Scriptures. When they take sweet counsel together, as they go to the house of God in company, when they bear each other's burdens, weep with those that weep, and rejoice with them that rejoice; say, have Christians no mutual fellowship? Is it not surprising that, losing sight of such obvious facts, our opponents always reason on the subject of communion as though it related merely to the sacrament? In every other particular they act just as we do.

However our opponents may deviate from Scripture, let them at least be consistent with themselves, and either follow out their own principles to their just consequence, by withholding from the members of other denominations every token of fraternal regard, of freely admit them to the Lord's table. As the case stands at present, their mode of proceeding is utterly untenable. In a variety of instances, they indulge themselves in those acts of communion with Pædobaptists which are peculiar to Christians; they frequently make them their mouth in addressing the Deity; they exchange pulpits; and even engage their assistance in exercises intended as a preparation for the eucharist; and after lighting the flame of devotion at their torch, they most preposterously turn round to inform them, that they are not worthy to participate. It would be difficult to convince a stranger to our practice, that it were possible to be guilty of such an absurdity. Is the observance of an external rite, let me ask, a more solemn part of religion than addressing the Majesty of heaven and of earth? And shall we depute him to present our prayers at his footstool, who would defile a sacrament by his presence? Suppose them to relax from their rigor, and to admit pious Pædobaptists to their fellowship, to what would it amount? To nothing more than a public acknowledgement of their union to Christ, and their interest in his benefits; and as they fully acknowledge both, why scruple to do it at the table of their common Lord? Why select an ordinance designed for the commemoration of the dying love of the Redeem

er as the signal for displaying the banners of party; and by reviving the remembrance of differences, elsewhere consigned to oblivion, give the utmost publicity to dissensions, which are the reproach of the church, and the triumph of the world.

The only color invented to disguise this glaring inconsistency, is so pure a logomachy, that it is difficult to speak of it with becoming gravity. They remind us, forsooth, that the expressions of Christian affection in praying and preaching for each other are not church acts, as though there were some magic in the word church that could change the nature of truth, or the obligations of duty. If it is our duty to recognize those as fellow Christians who are really such, what is there in the idea of a church that should render it improper there? If the church is "the pillar and ground of truth," it is the proper place for the fullest disclosure of its secrets; and if Christians are under an obligation to love each other with a pure heart, fervently, its organization can never have been designed to contract the heart, by confining the movements and expressions of charity within narrower limits. The duty of churches originates in that of the individuals of which they consist, so that when we have ascertained the sentiments and principles which ought to actuate the Christian in his private capacity, we possess the standard to which the practice of churches should be uniformly adjusted.

Nor is it in this particular only, that the persons whose opinions we are controverting are betrayed into lamentable inconsistency. Their concessions on another branch of the subject, lay them open to the same imputation. They acknowledge that many Pædobaptists stand high in the favor of God; enjoy intimate communion with the Redeemer; and would, on their removal hence, be instantaneously admitted to glory. Now, it seems the suggestion of common sense, that the greater includes the less, that they who have a title to the most sublime privileges of Christianity, the favor of God, the fellowship of Christ, and the hope of glory, must be unquestionably entitled to that ordinance whose sole design is to prepare us for the perfect fruition of these blessings. To suppose it possible to have an interest in the great redemption, without being allowed to commemorate it, that he may possess the substance who is denied the shadow, and though qualified for the worship of heaven, be justly debarred from earthly ordinances, is such an anomaly as cannot fail to draw reprobation on the system of which it is the necessary consequence. Men will, ere long, tremble at the thought of being more strict than Christ, more fastidious in the selection of the members of the church militant, than he is in choosing the members of the church triumphant.

Hitherto our attention has been occupied in stating the argu

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In every inquiry relating to Christian duty, our first concern should undoubtedly be to ascertain the will of the Supreme Legislator; but when this has been done to our satisfaction, we may be allowed to examine the practical tendency of different systems, the effect of which will be to confirm our preference of that course of action which we have found most consonant with the oracles of truth. We are far from resting the merits of our cause on the basis of expedience; we are aware that whoever attempts to set the useful in opposition to the true, is misled by false appearances, and that it behoves us, on all occasions, fearless of consequences, to yield to the force of evidence. But having, in the preceding pages, proved, (we would hope to the satisfaction of the reader) that the practice of strict communion has no support from Scripture or reason, it cannot be deemed improper briefly to inquire Tx into its tendency.



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The first effect necessarily resulting from it, is a powerful prejudice against the party which adopts it. When all other denominations find themselves lying under an interdict, and treated as though they were heathens or publicans, they must be more than men not to resent it, or if they regard it with a considerable deThegree of apathy, it can only be ascribed to that contempt which impotent violence is so apt to inspire. We are incompetent judges of the light in which our conduct appears, to those against whom it is directed, but the more frequently we place ourselves in their situation, the less will be our surprise at the indications of alienation and disgust which they may evince. The very appellation of Baptist, together with the tenets by which it is designated, become associated with the idea of bigotry; nor will it permit the mind which entertains that prejudice, to give an impartial attention to the evidence by which our sentiments are supported. With mingled surprise and indignation they behold us making pretensions which no other denomination of Protestants assumes, placing ourselves in an attitude of hostility towards the whole Christian world, and virtually claiming to be the only church of Christ upon earth. Fortified, as it is, by its claims to antiquity and universality, and combining in its exterior whatever is adapted to dazzle the imagination, and captivate the senses, there is yet nothing in the church of Rome that has excited more indignation and disgust than this very pretension. What then must be the sensation produced, when, in the absence of all these advantages, a sect, comparatively small and insignificant, erects itself on a solitary eminence from whence it repels the approach of all other Christians. The power of prejudice to arrest the progress


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ments in favor of mixed communion, and replying to the objections to that practice. It is but justice to the subject and to the reader, before we close the discussion, to touch on another topic.

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of inquiry is indeed to be lamented; nothing could be more desirable, than that every opinion should, in the first instance, be judged of by its intrinsic evidence, without regard to the conduct of the persons who embrace it; but the strength and independence of mind requisite to such an effort, is rather to be admired than expected. There are few who enter on the investigation of theological questions in that elevated state; secret antipathies or predilections will be sure to instil their venom, and obscure the perception of truth, and the suggestions of reason.

By the stern rejection of the members of all other denominations, until they have embraced our distinguishing tenets, what do we propose to effect-to intimidate, or to convince? We can do neither. To intimidate is impossible, while there are others, far more numerous than ourselves, ready to receive them with open arms. The hope of producing conviction by such an expedient is equally groundless and chimerical, since conviction is the result of evidence, and no light whatever can be pretended to be conveyed by interdicting their communion, unless it be that it manifests our intolerance. We propose to extirpate an error, and we plant a prejudice; and instead of attempting to soften and conciliate the minds of our opponents, we inflict a stigma. Professing serious concern that the ordinance of baptism, as it was practised in the first ages, is fallen into neglect, we attempt to revive an unpopular rite by a mode of procedure, which, without the remotest tendency towards the removal of error, or the elucidation of truth, answers no other purpose than to make ourselves unpopular.

By this preposterous conduct, we do all in our power to place our Pædobaptist brethren beyond the reach of conviction. Since it is unreasonable to expect, however attractive the ministry, that a pious Pædobaptist will statedly attend where he must despair of ever becoming a member, and of enjoying the privileges to which every serious person is supposed to aspire; he attaches himself, as a necessary consequence, to a connexion in which there is no such impediment, but where he is certain of hearing nothing but what will foster his prejudices and confirm his error. Thus he is excluded from the only connexion where the arguments for adult baptism are stated, and is exposed to the constant operation of an opposite species of instruction. The practice which we are reprobating is nearly equivalent to an inscription over the door, 'Let none but Baptists enter within these walls'-an admirable expedient, truly, for diffusing the Baptist sentiments, about as rational as to send a man from London to Constantinople to study the evidences of Christianity.

Mr. Kinghorn is delighted with this separation of the Baptists from other denominations in the offices of devotion, avowing it as

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