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Full text of "A dissertation upon the supposed existence of a moral law of nature, and upon the being of a triune god. Wherein is shewn that the idea of the former is not to be found in scripture, and is contrary to reason: and that the latter is contained in scripture, and is not contrary to reason. With a letter to the Right Reverend Thomas, Lord Bishop of Oxford. And a postscript to the Dunciad, the critical and monthly reviewers"

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O F A 

Moral Law of Nature, 


Being of a TRIUNE GOD. 

Wherein is ftiewn 

That the Idea of the former is not to be found in 
Scripture, and is contrary to Reafon : And that 
the latter is contained in Scripture, and is not 
contrary to Reafon. 

With a LETTER to the Right Reverend 
THOMAS, Lord Bifhop of 0;f/^ri. 

And a POSTSCRIPT to the Dunciad, 
the Critical and Monthly Reviewers. 



Printed for the AUTHOR : And Sold by E. Withers, at the 
Se-ven Stars, between the TcKph-Gaies, Fleet -fireet ; Tho. 
Field, at the Wheatjheaf, Cheo-pjlde, the Corner of Pater- 
noJler-Roiv ; and E. Dillv, at the Rofe and Cro=wn in th»« 
Poultry, ntZXitiQ Manfion-houfe. MDCCLVII. 

Price One Shillinir. ' " 

n^ ■ j^ f'd/toc 

( iii ) 

To the Right Reverend 

The Lord Biftop oi OXFORD. 

My Lord, 

THAT your Lordfhip may know what 
kind of a man it is that writes to you, 
I mud beg your Lordfhip's indulgence to in- 
form you, he has read the writings of the Ca- 
baiifts, Myftics, Alchymifts, Mythologifts and 
Delfts, and was greatly bewildered thereby? 
but mofl: of all by the anfwers to the laft : for 
he received more damage by the lame defences 
of Chriftianity, than by the fhrewdeft attacks 
of its enemies. Thus obfcured, he quitted his 
courfe of reading for the moral and natural 
philofophers, and the modern commentators 
of fcrlpture : they bewildered him ten times 
more j the philofophers taught a lie for truth j 
and the commentators granting more than 
the moral philofophers asked, and finding 
their own artillery turned upon them, and 

A 2 them- 

( iv ) 
thcmfclvcs nearly demolifhcd, were forced 
to go over to the enemies camp. The 
nuthor was an enquiring fpe^lator till pail 
the forty fifth year of his life 5 nor knew 
who was right" or who was wrong, but was 
ftrongly inclined to conclude they were all 
wrong 5 bccaufe he could not conceive an 
infinitely wife God would create a world 
of immortals, and leave them to grope thus 
in the dark. He is a man of a common 
fliare of that common fenfc which is to be 
found in the revelation of God 5 but he could 
never conceive the word of God and his 
works could difagreej that their difagreement 
once granted, there ends all certainty in <ii- 
vinity and philofophy for ever. To fee and 
be able to demonftrate this agreement, is the 
height, the fummit of learning j and all learn- 
ing that has not that tendency, or leads from 
that, as it fmothcrs the mind in ignorance, 
fo it plunges its profeflbrs in immorality. 
Thofe, therefore, whofe earth-born, homefpun 
fchcmcs, and whole skill is employed to de- 
ftroy this divine and falutary connection, by 
fetting up a llandard of natural philofophy, 
which puts the control upon common fenfe 
and the fcriptures j a ftandard of moral fit- 
neffes^ and making revelation (loop to it; a 


law of nature as the foundation of Chri- 
ftianity and the revelation of God, I cannot 
'help comparing to Owls, who arraign the 
Eagle for blindnefs, and in the twilight try 
him at their own bar. How far this has been 
the cafe for more than fcventy years paft, and 
continues to be the cafe dill, and that the fruits 
of it have been a deluge of immorality, (hewing 
itfelf in corruption, perjury, fubornation, 
drunkennefs, debauchery, bribery, Gomorean 
wickednefs, infidelity, and every conceivable 
abomination, till vice is reduced to a fyftem, 
and gloried in, your Lordfhip cannot but 
have obferved. And, as it is much in your 
Lordfhip's power, and is your proper pro- 
vince, to lead us out of this gloom, I doubt 
not but you will exert yourfelf to reftore us to 
the light and liberty of the Gofpel, by ftarving 
thofe weeds in God's vineyard, and thereby 
fave a once glorious kingdom, now finking 
into the grofTeft Heathenifm. 

The author has converfed in his time with 
a great number of learned men, and, for more 
than twenty years paft, never forgot to inquire 
of them concerning thofe moral fitneffes the 
Moralifts make fuch a rout about, and con- 
cerning the moral law of nature : the former 
appears, upon the moft cxaft enquiry, and 


( vi ) 
upon the highcft evidence, to be only a jumWc 
of fooleries which our infidels have got into 
their heads, without knowing what to mal^c 
of them. The latter, by the fame inquiry, 
and upon the fame evidence, appears to be an 
;high-founding word, that m^anj nothing j a 
phantom, that has no exiftencc but in the 
brains of men, who never knew what it was 
to think 3 a bind of wind, puff'd at the revela- 
tion of God 5 a (linking vapour, rifing frooj 
rhc bottomlcfs pit, to extinguifh the light of 
the Gofpel. The Author prefumcs upon his 
being a competent judge here, and that he 
can diftinguifh between the ttuth and falfity 
of any thing in the written revelation of 
God, and a learned conjcdure about it; be- 
tween reafon and lomance, between truth and 
a fidion. He has caft off many of the preju- 
dices of his education, and hopes he has e«ir 
braced no dangerous ones in their ftead. He 
prefumcs, my Lord, that the written reve- 
lation of God was given to be the rule of our 
faith and manners » to reftrain the exorbitance 
of our appetites ; to curb our enthufiafms ; to 
regulate our waking dreams, &c. And, ijnce 
the happincfs ot each rational creature conftfts 
in his nearacfs to God, it is inconceivable to 
think the doctrines of his revelation fliould 


( vii ) 
not effed this end better than a whimfical law 
of nature, and a flippery fitnefs of things, which 
every man makes unfit as foon as he diflikes 
their fitnefs : mens wranglings about right 
and wrong, wars, law-fuits, &c. their di- 
ftrefling each other about a little propeity, 
are too folemn proofs of this. And, fince 
the happinefs of the individual is interrupted 
while he is in full career after any temporal 
good, or anxioufly afraid of lofing it 5 fince 
there is no peace to be had below while 
the man has any thing to hope for, or any 
thing to fear below ? that the peace of the 
mind depends upon a fubmiflion to, and an 
acquiefcence in the will of God, in his choice 
of that lot for us, as the beft in our prefent 
circumftances j and fince it has pleafed God to 
give us an explicit revelation of his will, for 
the rule of our thoughts and adions $ can the 
policy of hell devife any thing more contrary 
to our peace and happinefs, more likely to 
alienate our minds from that revelation, than to 
put an imaginary fyftem of natural laws, moral 
fitneffes, &c. into our hands, and perfwade us 
to judge of, and fet them up as our directory ? 
Is not this burning my matter's inftrudions, and 
then furmifing what bufinefs he would have 
me perform, and how I fhall execute it to pleafc 
him ? How would this be approved of in a 


( viii ) 
politic government ? The fcripturc is the only 
rule to dired us to walk in paths of peace, 
and perform an acceptable obedience to God. 
This no Chriftian is at liberty to deny. Is it 
not then audacious to introduce a fucccdaneum 
of natural moralities, &c. of our own con- 
triving, to fapcrcede the fcripturcs, to infringe 
or inlarge the limits prefcribed in them, re- 
fpeding the do6lrine of faith or morality ? I 
think, my Lord, I am not miftaken here ; 
nor have I mifs'd the point ; for, if wc have 
an in-born, natural law, (and if it be not in- 
born it is not natural) if our reafon can dire(ft 
us, the fcriptures may puzzle, perplex, and 
put us out 5 but they cannot help us. That 
the law which God has given us is fuitable to 
our nature in its original perfecft flate, no man 
in his fcnfcs will deny ; yet, I think no man 
in his fcnfes will, bccaufe of that, call it a na- 
tural law ; for, it is againft, and contrary to 
our prcfent natures. 

The notion of a religion without an ex- 
ternal dircdory, is fimilar to an arithmetic 
without numbers, or to a blank common- 
prayer book, and leaves every one to the 
natural brutality of his own wild and wicked 
imagination, and muft, and will eventually 
terminate in the total overthrow, and prove 
the dcftrudion, of any kingdom, church or 


( ix ) 

government in the world. To talk of govern- 
ment in church or ftate, without religion, true 
or falfe, or to keep up that religion without 
an external rule, is a dream, a dangerous dream, 
to be rejeifled by all wife men. As men ad- 
vance into a falfe religion, fo far is government 
weakened, unlefs kept up by tyranny : for falfe 
religion is irreligion, and difpofes men to caft 
off all fear and reverence to governors of every 
kind ; and tho' your Lordfhip will anticipate 
me here, every one will not : I infer, there- 
fore, that Deifm is the mod dangerous plague 
that ever befel this kingdom. We think when 
an Englifhman turns Papift, his Majefty lofes 
a fubjcd 5 if that Papift turns Deift, he gets a 
rebel, fubjed to no law but by conftraint, and 
hardly then. 

I have for many years carefully obferved 
the gradations of infidelity, and have feen 
many a man who had had a religious educa- 
tion, and fear'd to behave ill, by firft hearing 
one then another Deift in mafquerade, in a 
little time caft off all religion, commence li- 
bertine, plead the right of private judgment, 
that his tongue was his own, and utter things 
I chufe not to infert here. Nemo repent e Jit 
turpiffimus. Your Lordfhip well knows, all 
thcfc tendencies to evil fhouldbe checked in the 
bud. 1 have heard one of thofe animals, at a 

a pinch. 

pinch, declare he thought it no more crime to 
kill a man, than to l^ill a cat. The firft ap- 
pearance of this temper I have fcen fhew itfclf 
in doubts about tlie authenticity of the hiftory 
of Mofcs, and the origin of his laws j whether 
he did not pick them up from tlie Heathens ; 
then his charader goes j then thofe of the after- 
Prophets 5 then of the Apoftles j then Chri- 
ftianity and all revelation. Sometimes it be- 
gins in doubts about the dodrine of the Tri- 
nity, and, tho'thatis the dodlrine of the church 
of Rome, and of all the reformed churches, 
of the church of England, and of the PRO- 
TESTANT Diflenters, thofe wifeacres, upon 
their wonderful difcovery that number one is 
not number three j and that number three is 
not number one, exult, and, like the cuckow, 
voice it round the country, and without know- 
ing more of the matter than the cuckows on 
the trees, fly in the face of fcripture, the re- 
ligion of their country, and the informed rca- 
fon of mankind : they proceed to deny the 
atonement, fet up to fave themiclvcs, deny the 
depravity of the human nature, difpute the fall 
of Adam, deny that he was the firft man, 
wrangle for a black pair, aver Mofes knew 
nothing of the matter, that the Prophets were 
fortune-tellers, the Apoftles cheats, Chriftianity 
a deception, Religion prieftcrafr, Revelation a 


(xi ) 

dream, commence libertine infidels, and plead 
for a moral law of nature. This is the 
general ftate of the manners of the age, a 
very few who have not bowed the knee to Baal 
excepted. If your Lordfhip conceives I have 
dafh'd the mefs with too much bitter, I alTure 
you I have greatly under-fcafoned it. 

If the beafts of the wildernefs had language, 
it would not be ftrange to hear the lion, the 
tyger, hyena, &c. plead the law of nature in 
juftification of their ravening brutality j to hear 
the fox, otter, ftotc, &c. plead the fame for 
robbing hen-roofts, folds and fifli-ponds, and 
for fucking our eggs j there would be pro- 
priety in this : to hear a boy at the dancing- 
fchool affront old Hobble for hurpling, and for 
not having dances naturally pourtray'd upon his 
heart j to hear an old war-horfe affront Dob- 
bin for not having his exercife by influid j to 
hear a chattering jack-daw afi^ront the inhabi- 
tants of the fpray for not having language 
wrote on their gizzards, were not wonderful ; 
but to hear a Man vaunting the naturality of 
what was whipt into him at fchool; to hear 
one whofe adions place him in the predica- 
ment with brutes, pleading the dignity of his 
nature, is the higheft piece of ignorance I ever 
heard of. When I hear thieves, robbers, py- 
rates, murderers, tyrants, &c. boafting of their 

a 2 pe- 

( Tii ) 

pcdigi'cc, or others valuing themfelvcs upon 
having a crook'd back, or for the lofs of their 
nofc by the foul evil, what mufl: I think but 
that their heads arc wrong ? 

A few years ago I publifhed a Creed, 
founded on Truth and Common Senfe, &c. in 
which I exploded the law of nature, natural 
confcience, and the moral fenfc, and kick'd 
them off the ftage. I knew not then of one 
man in the whole world that would not blame 
me for it, and was in cxpc<ftation of opposition: 
but prcfcntly 1 received the thanks of divers 
learned men, whom I knew not, and the 
afTurancc of others, that if oppofed they 
would (land in the gap : thus it rcfted, at lead 
without doing any harm, except that, by the 
report of many, it kill'd Dr. Foftcr, and, but 
for that dilafter, I was plcafed with my per- 
formance, and fo 1 am ftill 5. but much more fo, 
when I find the learned Dr. Leland, and many 
others as learned as he, raifmg the funeral pile, 
to COP fume and evaporate thofc ghoftly phan- 
toms into the expanfe, rendering their con- 
fidence and refurrcdicn for ever impoflible. 

When a young duck, &c. needs inlhudions 
to fwim, and her inQind, her law of nature 
fails her to fwim naturally, I will acknowledge 
we may have a moral law of nature, and yet 
ftand in need of inftruc^ions to brinj^ it into 


( xiii ) 
cxercife 5 nor know how to regulate our man- 
ners without teaching ; but till then this moral 
law of nature appears to me to be the greateft 
abfurdity, the higheft contradidlion to com- 
mon fenfe I was ever witnefs to. Nor can I 
forbear to exprefs my furprize that any man 
who ever thought or reafoned in his life, could 
fuifer fuch a dream to enter into his head 5 or 
how a Chriftian can infult his Maker and Re- 
deemer in Co grofs a manner, for giving his 
dodrine, laws, precepts, ordinances, &c. to us 
in a written record. When this method of 
reafoning can be fhewn to be inconclufive, I 
promife to becomea very tradable Quaker, or 
rather to put myfelf under the proteftion of 
hisHolinefs, under his guidance. Thedodrine 
above is correfpondent with the frame of our 
natures, will (land the teft of all the learning 
known to mankind, and is the plan of fcrip- 
ture ; and when I depart from that, I have no 
right to be call'd a Proteftant. 

This imaginary law of nature once fixed in 
the mind, farewell to liberty, religion, pro- 
perty, and every thing worth having j for it is 
a true levelling principle, by making every 
man a conceited judge for himfelf, of the fit 
and the unfit, of right and wrong j for, upon 
his own principles, he is not to be fubjed to 
any other law, nor anfwerable to any but him- 

( xiv ) 
fclf for his actions 5 and, if he may infringe, 
extend, or fupcrcede ad libitum, the revelation 
of God, he may much more eafily take that 
liberty with human laws, and, like the Quakers, 
with the aid of their inward light, deem the 
vilcft crimes not only innocent, but virtues, 
ind will never fail to ftrike the balance in his 
6wn favour; bcfides all this, it fixes a man in 
infidelity at once, and, in proportion asitfprings 
in the mind, is To far a progrcflion to it. 

To hear the duties of natural religion taught 
from the pulpit, is of a piece with going to a 
fifhcrman to be inftrudcd to catch fifh, who, 
inftead of that, teaches us to catch tod-poles, 
or for a fifh gives us a ft one. Such is the fta:e 
of our learning and divinity at this time, a 
few inftanccs excepted. 

It mufl: afiuredly be a very obfcure law of 
nature, whofe profeflbrs need inftrudions to 
know what it is, and ftill more, to be guided 
by it. This carries contradidion in its front, 
and he muft be a man of a very weak head who 
cannot fee it : The laft year's politics give u» 
the highcft proof what the principles of the 
pretended law of nature are ; for, I fuppofe 
no man will have the face to fay the executors 
of them were guided by fcripture : fure I am, 
he who affirms it ought to be kccl-hauled. Let 
6 US 


us look to Vcrfailles, to Vienna, to Saxony, 
&c. &c. and ponder whether a fccnc of action 
Springing from the innate bafencfs of the 
mind, and executed voluntarily, without ia- 
ftrudions, check or remorfe ; fuch, for in- 
ftance, as plotting againft innocent neigh- 
bours, breach of treaties, ingratitude, breach 
of trulls, plundering, fcalping, killing, fale of 
countries, and, when detefledj bribing to efcape 
the bow-ftring, appear not more like branches 
of the law of nature than the politics of Neh€- 
miah and Daniel ; thefe were train'd up in the 
law of their God to behave with integrity to 
their mafters, to hate covetoufnefs, delays, &c. 
&c. &c. to be adive, vigorous, frugal, watch- 
ful, and careful to prevent every difafter. This 
was the fruit of long difcipline and divine 
skill, and, furely was not attained to by the 
law of nature. How far their plan of politics 
has been adhered to in this inlishtened a^e, 
every man can judge as well as I j but every 
departure from this model, in this blaze of 
natural light, and while the law ©f nature lias 
been invigorated by inftrudlion, and its pre- 
tended firfl: principles inculcated with the ut- 
moft energy from the pulpit and theprefs, be- 
fpeaks its weaknefs and its worthlefsnels. 
• Your Lordfhip will not conceive of me as 
an Enthufiaft or a Methodift, for I am a true 


( XVI ) 

Proteftant, a finccre friend to the written re- 
velation of God, and a cordial vveli-wifher to 
the true church of England as by law efta- 
blifhed : therefore no man is at liberty to 
conftrue this as written to affront your Lord- 
Ihip, or any other man. If it be enquired, 
what fed I am of? I anfwer, I am a Chriftian, 
and ardently wifh the welfare of all my fellow 
creatures. And that your Lordfhip may be 
enabled by your Lord and Mafter, to exert 
yourfelf to flop that deluge of infidelity that has 
almoft fwept us away, and hurl'd us into 
grofleft prophanity, Paganifm, &c. That your 
Lordfhip may long live, and your labours 
be bleffed for that purpofe, is the warm wifli 

My Lord, 

Tour Lordjkip's mojl humble ^ 

And moji obedient Servant y 


( I ) 



HAPPY would it be if men would for- 
bear writing till they could publifli fome- 
thing for the benefit of their readers •, nor 
. ever leave any thing unrealonable or falfe 
upon record : he that aims not at the firft, and to 
avoid the lad, is not an honeft man : nor while he 
negleds the word of God, or his works, or lees 
not their connection, will he be ever fit to teach 
divinity or philofophy. The evidence for the for- 
mer will be concealed ; and though he may feem 
to have nature before him, he goes not the right 
way to apprehend her ; he is ftill in a chace, but 
will never overtake his s:ame : for while he con- 
ceives God and nature aliens, his word and his 
works contraries, he may traverfe the whole Ency- 
clopiedia, wrangle about problems, ftate his con- 
ceits, digeft them into cxa£c method, divide, dif- 
tinguifh, &c. and all to as little purpofe, as to 
fow his corn-fields with metaphyfical grain, or 
(kipping the phantom circle with the fairies : it will 
leave him hungry, as the old philofophical dragon, 
eating his own tail. 

There is no philofophy which has perfeclly united 
God to his creature but the chriftian •, wherefore it 
is the only true philofophy, and the only true reli- 
gion ; for without this union, there can be no fpi- 
ritual or eternal life. This union was perfected by 
the wifdom and power of the triune God in the hu- 

B manity 

_ ( o 

manity of Chrlft, into which an influx of immate- 
rial power was poured. He himfelf, in whom the 
fulnefs of the Godheud refided, acknowledged and 
confirmed this in ehe fitih ; tor when the difeafed 
touched his garment, though the prefs was great, 
he queftioned his dilciples who it was, for that he 
perceived virtue was gone out ot him. Had thofe 
ppints been adhered to, and the world not been 
plagued with a nonfenfical law of nature, which its 
abetters cannot define, they had never heard of me 
as an author. And when I was crept out of my 
obfcurity, I had ftopt, had it not been for the won- 
derful,, the reverend Mr. Caleb Fleming's letter 
of admonition to the reverend Mr. Samuel Pike.- 
When that came out, it was extolled by his iriends. 
as the grtateft blow that had ever been given to- 
what the primitive church, from the time ot the in- 
carnation, had, and all the reformed churches have, 
fmce, efteemed the dodrincs of revelation : but when, 
they heard that remarks upon it were publifliing„ 
they foftcned their tone a little. Afterwards when 
the remarks appeared, it was lumoured Mr. Flem- 
ing would anfvver them. At the txpedation o£ 
that, and niy being the object of his notice, my 
ambition began to rife •, 1 fwelled till I was ready 
to burft with pride ; I ftarted in ray own conceit 
fix feet in ftature at once, and tliought myfelf as 
tnll as a cedar : when, upon waiting, I found hiS; 
cannon nailed, his arienal empty, and that his allies 
had nothing left except a few ftink-pots *, and a 
quantity of fcavenger's dirt, which they threw aD 
random ; and that the bafRed malignants were block- 
ed up ; an ecllatic rapture fucceeded, which made 
me half as lunatic as the Reviewers. Thefc had-, 
puffed Mr. Fleming off, as if he had been an Ad- 


* Veflels filled with noifomc combustibles, which they throw 
jiuo fhips to pcifon or fuficc?-.f ihofc vsliora chev cannot othen^" 
vtte conquer. 

(3 ) 
tiifon or a Steel, and taken him under their pro- 
tottion ; and to keep him fafe, they fnouted and 
yelled, they barked and howled, to frighten his an- 
tagonifts if they could. Some of his triends, who 
think themfclves fober, pronounced me a madman 
for meddling with him. I am glad it is the only 
inftance of madnefs they can charge me with, and 
that it lies not at the door of my learning. Not- 
withftanding that when I confidered that befides 

iiaving ftitched up Dr. , hem'd in Dr. Fofter, 

and fewed the Quakers into a poke, I had fo ran- 
tered the two latter together, that to, attempt to fe- 
parate them, would b^ to tear them limb from 
limb, my joy boiled over. Nor was it at all allayed 
by the fevcre revenge Mr. Fleming and his devo- 
tees hurled at me, as boys hurl ftones at a dog. 
They buffetted me with foot- bags, and then buf- 
fetted me again for being black, which I heartily 
forgive them. But I pafs thefe matters not to wipe 
their dirt and reproach off, for it won't ftick ; but 
for their fakes to reafon foberly, in hopes they will 
have fobricty to attend to the two following pro- 
pofitions, and their proof. 

I. The doclrine of a moral law of nature, is not 
to be found in fcripture, and is contrary to reafon. 

II. The doctrine of a triune God is to be found 
in the fcripturcs, and is not contrary to reafon. 

The doflrine of a triune God, and that of a fup- 
pofed natural religion, oppofc each other at point- 
blank •, and as they are points of the greatell im- 
portance, it is hoped the reader will examine the 
evidence they iiand on, with a gravity equal to that 
with which the author propofcs to difcufs them ; 
for he thinks himfelf here obliged to quit and avoid 
every humourous ftroke of his pen •, and if the rea- 
der, cannot proceed with compofure, he begs hini 

B 2 to 

C 4 ) 
to flop and read no further. Thus 'agreed, we 
proceed to obferve, 

Ihat by the ignorance men are involved in, they 
are prompted to propagate the notion of a moral 
law of nature, and to affirm that chriftianity pre- 
ilippofes the truth of natural religion. By this they 
fay the being of a God, his attributes, and the man- 
ner of his worfhip, is difcoverable -, and that by 
their conformity to this natural law, they (hall be 
favcd, and for their nonconformity condemned. In 
proportion as this is true, the neceffity of an exter- 
nal revelation from God, and of a redeemer from 
fin, ceafes. And notwithftanding the perpetual dif- 
ferences concerning virtue and vice, between hea- 
then nation and heathen nation, and between the 
individuals of each from the prince to the beggar, 
the one ftamping that a virtue which the other 
ftamps a vice, and vice verfa, while each is fup- 
pofed never to have heard of a revelation, but to 
be governed by an invariable law of nature •, and 
notwithftanding the vilcft and moft flagitious crimes 
in human nature have had the fanflion ot this law, 
and worn the guife of, and pafs'd for devotion 
ampngft the heathens, the quai'Cers, Szc. each led 
by the fame law or principle under a different name; 
and fince the papifts, &c. by departing from re- 
velation have done the fame •, how is it that the 
fmalleft Ihare of common fenfe fails to convince 
mankind that the rule is uncertain ; or that there 
abilities are naturally too feeble and depraved to 
underftand it ? Yet they pertinacioully maintain the 
perfedl:ion of the former, 'and the natural vigor and 
Ibundncfs of the latter. It is prefumed the loweft 
degree of rcfledion is here fufficient to difcover the 
cheat ; and, unlefs the man has a pleafure in being 
cheated, to detell it. But they think they can fup- 
port thofc dreams from fcripture, and urge Rom. 


( 5 ) 

chapter the firft, for proof, * " That which may 
" be known of God is manifeft in them, (the Gen- 
" tiies) for God hath fhewed it unto them. For the 
" invifible things of him, from the creation of the 
*' world, are clearly feen, being underftood by the 
" things that are made, even his eternal power and 
" godhead •, fo that they are without excufe: be- 
*^ caufe that when they knew God, they glorified 
" him not as God, neither were thankful, but be- 
*' came vain in their imaginations, and their foolilli 
" hearts was darkened ; profefiing themfelves wife, 
'• they became fools, ^c." This text they pro- 
duce to prove their natural religion : but, four pro- 
pofitions arife from hence, which overthrow it ; as, . 

1. " That God aduaily revealed to mankind the 
knowledge ot his exiftence and attributes, to ym- 

2. '' That he direded them to bear in mind his. 
infinite power, and glory, and goodnefs, by con- 
fidering the heavens, the work oi his fingers, the 
moon and the flars which he hath ordained, the 
earth alfo, and the fea, and all things therein. 

3. " That, thro' the perverfenefs and vanity of 
their hearts, they fell away from the knowledge 
of the true God, who giveth to all men life, and 
breath, and all things, and held the truth (the 
general truth that there is a God) in unrighteouf- 
nefs, tranferring his glory to graven images, and, 
tho' they ran madding after multitudes of gods, 
yet having no fear, no knowledge of God the 
Creator. ♦ 

4. " That, becaufe they were all guilty before 
God, and without excufe for this their falling off, 
who, from the' awakening memorials of his 
power and g'ory, which in his creation he had 
fpread before them, might, if they had liked 
it, have retained, what they had from revelation 

* Rom. i. 19, i^'c. 

( 6) 

*' rcctircd, the knowledge of the tnie Creator 
** God ; therefore he was angry with them, and 
** gave them up to thofe vile affcftions and cor- 
" ruptions (largely defcribed in this and the third 
*' chapter of this epiftle) which were the natural 
" fruits of their defedion from him.** 

V/ill any one now have the front to infer froni 
this text of St. Paul, that the natural powers of man 
are capable of invefligating the being and attributes 
of God ? And, is not the quite contrary to be in- 
ter'd from it ? I would leave the Hottentot to judge 

It will be granted, our fenfcs are not infallible, 
and that our reafon is imperfed: this affords a de- 
monflration that we want the help of revelation ; 
with that help, and not by the law of nature, we 
may difcovcr the invifible things of God, as fhall 
be fhewn below. 

From the revolt at Babel, downwards, while men 
knew the true Elahim, and that the material agents 
were the fervants of Heaven, and not obje6ts of 
worfhip, yet worfhipped them, fct forth at large 
Rom. firft chapt. at verfe 20, as above, when they 
knew God,&c. the Elahim ordered them to be de- 
flroy'd ; when their pofterity became ignorant, by 
and after the confufion of tongues, they became 
objefts of mercy, and had fufficient means and mo- 
tives to leave attributing the powers to thofe agents, 
and pay them to the true Elahim, and, confer 
quently, to leave off committing thofe breaches of 
duty in focicty, which this had drawn them into ; 
and then, pei forming thofe natural duties would be 
acceptable from them, as the fcriptures declare. 

*' The intent of the precepts of the Chriftian re- 
** ligion, was not to fettle exadly tlie bounds be- 
** twet-n virtue and vice, with a, fo far you fhall 
** keep from vice, and fo far you fhall advance in 
** virtue, and no farther •, but to diltinguifh the 

*' one 

( 7 ; 

*' one from the other, and leave it to every Chr'r- 
*' ftian to keep his a<flions at as great a diftance as 
" pofnble from vice, and to extend them to the 
" higheft degree of virtue poffible, by faith and 
" love. — God requires the heart, the affeiflions, 
" that is, the reafonable fervice. Holinefs compre- 
*' hends ali, from the lowefl degree, to perfection." 
So that other text wh.ich they drag in to fupporc 
their phantom, their natural religion, is not for their 
purpofe, Rom. ii. 14. '* For when the Gentiles, who 
have not the law, do by nature the things contained 
in the law." It is to be noted here, that this is nor 
the reading in the text, but thus; " For when the 
Gentiles, who have not the law by nature, do the 
things contained in the law, thefe having not the 
law, are a law unto themfelves ; which (hew ihe 
work of the law written in their hearts, their con- 
fcience alio bearing witnefs, and their thoughts, the 
mean while, accufing, orelfe excufing one another." 
He that can find the law of nature in this text, muft 
have better eyes than ever 1 Ihall have. If the 
Gentile Vv-orld had had the law of nature written in 
their hearts, the apoftle could not twice have p.'-o- 
nounced, that by nature they had not the law i for 
no man ever fuppofed they had the law or dodrine 
of revelation naturally written in their hearts, k 
is very extraordinary, that the apoftle, who had in 
the lifft chapter of this epiflle, fhev/n, that the 
whole Gentile world were funk into every con- 
ceivable abomination, were lawlefs brutes, earthly, 
fenfual and devilifli, (hould, in this chapter, prove 
they had a moral law naturally written in their hearts 1 
The believing Gentiles, indeed, v/ho had not the 
law, or, who had no law by nature, but the laith 
and love mentioned above, written in their hearts, 
ciid, (by faith) the things contained in the law — 
are a lavv to themfelves — their confciences bearing, 
witnefs, ^c. When our moralifts attempt to over- 

( 8 ) 
throw this fenfe of the text, and to fupport their 
Jaw of nature from it, they (hall have a further ac- 
count of it. In the interim, they are to know, that 
he who goes about to prove the exiftence of an 
innate moral law of nature from fcripture, plays the 
fcripture upon itfelf, or, rather, turns the artillery 
of the devil upon it. The Quaker's inward light, 
and fuch a law of nature, is the fame wild chimera, 
and equally deftroy the ufe and authenticity of 
Jcripture; and, if fuch an one be not a Deift, one 
would be curious to know how he differs from him ; 
lordeifm and the law of nature is the fame identical 
thing. The rabinical men, the claiTical tribe, who 
read not the fcriptures in the original, are fcarcely 
better judges here than moles are of aftronomy. 
They have only the tradition of tradition from the 
Pagans, or the Talmudifts, neither of whom can 
fhew the fenfe of fcripture, nor eftablifli the law of 
nature ; they have only lick'd up the drivel of the 
Heathens and the apoftates, without knowing how 
they came to ruminate. They can, perhaps, tran- 
flate the words of Homer, Virgil, Ovid, &c. but 
know no more of the author's plan, than the pen 
the author wrote with. They can, fome of them, 
read Maimonides's Latin tranQatlon of the Talmud, 
and follow him in all his blunders, without being 
able to correft one of them ; but this will not help 
them at fcripture. But, before we quit the laft cited 
text, we afk, in what law were the things contained 
which the Heathens did by nature ? It could not 
be the Mofair, nor the Judicial, nor the Moral law •, 
for thofe law? contained none of the things they did. 
The worfliip and manners of the whole Gentile 
world put the full controul upon all thofe laws, and 
upon tiie things contained in them, unlcfs thofe laws 
enjoyn'd every thing that was damnable, which God 
forbid 1 Ihould believe. The Gentiles worfnipped a 
falfc obj'-jdl, in a falfe manner ; they had a multi- 

tude of Gods, and temples erefled to them, in op* 
pofition to all the laws and commands of God ; 
thsy worfliippcd their gods by graven images, pro- 
phaninn; his name, and his fabbaths-, murderinf^ 
their parents, or felling them into Oavcry ; facri- 
licing their firft-born fons, and, 'till Mahomet's 
time, killing as many of their daughters as kept the 
number of males and females even, fatting, roaft- 
ing, and eating many of them. Rapes, adulteries, 
fornications, beaftiality, fodomy, thefts, lying, de- 
ceiving, iyc. were the higheft acts of their worfhip, 
and the beft of their manners amongft moft of 
them. A wicked covetoufnefs, and a fcandalous 
immorality, abounded in their manners almoft uni- 
verfally. This is too well known for me to fear the 
CDntrout of any man. They facrificed hogs, dogs, 
cocks, ^c. in oppofition to the command of God ; 
and, bccaufe the judicial law had forbidden the 
Hebrews to mix their feed in fowing their fields, 
to abftain from mixing their cattle in plowing, if^c. 
and their garments with linen and woolen •, the 
Heathens had their temples to the Mixer, and, 
in worfliipping that God, they proceeded in their 
commerce, male with Lmale, to the moft abo- 
minable mixtures, and to others too deteftable for 
common decency to name. It would take a volume 
to recapitulate the damnable oppofition of the 
Gentile worfhip and manners to every law of God 
and fociety. Now, let the moralift tell me, it he 
can, what law it v/as that was written on the Gen- 
tiles hearts, or contain'd thofe things which they did 
by nature. If he replies, It was the law of nature ; 
unlefs he can define it, I laugh at him, and treat 
hiin as an ignorant, as a perfedt ftranger to the 
fcriptures, and to the hiftory of the heathen world, 
whole worfhip and manners, as above, were earthly, 
fenllial,and dcviiifh, as oppofite to every law of God, 

C and 

C 10 ) 

and of all civilized rations, as htll is to heaven *. 
It is confeifcd the Pagan world, whofe forefathers 
had rejeded the revelation of God, had, notwith- 


* Their politics and government are yet urged as a plea for 
their natural wifdom. Government fuppofes law ; that fuppofes 
religion, without which it is a non-entity. Law and religion are 
co-incident, nor can tlie policy ot man feparate them ; they 
flourifh and live together, they dwindle and die together ; nor 
can the one fubfif! without the other. We hear much of a (late 
of nature ; and, to (liew the ftrength of the Pagans reafon and 
their wifdom, it is urged, that mens mutual wants and neceffities 
ivould drive them into fociety, and unite them naturally under 
fomij form of government ; and that the wil'dom of the Heathens 
appears in contriving thofe forms. This is mighty pretty, if it 
could be proved. But fuch babblers are call'd upon to fliew in 
what age of the world this ftate of nature fubfifted, and to give 
ah inftance of the form of government inftituted in that ftate : 
when they think they have done that, it fliall be fliewn them, 
that government was originally inftituted by God, previous to 
any (uppofed (late of nature, and that the heathen nations carried 
off a blind tradition of that as well as of all they had befides. 
The African rations, where they i-:ill and eat, or fell one another, 
bids the faircil for this (late of nature of any that can be named4 
If this be what would pleafe our natural moralifts, it were to be 
wiflicd they would all tranfport themfelvcs to Africa : nor can I 
fee what (hould hinder tliem, unlefa they arc in hope of inflaving 
us here, or for fear the (lave-trade (hould fail when they are all 
there. The near approach to this (late of nature that is to be 
found amongfl the American Indians, comes not up to their pur- 
pole ; becaufe it appears by all tlieir culloms and manners, that 
they are the pollerity of the fcattefed tribes of Ifrael, and thatgo- 
Vjinment among them arofe not from their rcafoning and wif- 
dom, but that they received it from their forefathers, their fore- 
fathcrj from the Iiraelites, and the Ifraelites from God. And, if 
tiiey received the idea of government from God, mucli more that 
of worthip, &c. The hiliories of alt pall times prove, that every 
Jaw worthy that name was taken from the Mofaic fyftem : and 
the more remote men are from that fountain, the more they 
' fwcrve from that plan, the wilder are their fyllems of law and 

That politician who thinks to rule a people by the ftrength of 
his own genius, and to imprcfs the obfervation of his laws upon 
tlicm, without religion, inltead of being a politician is a fool; 
and, inftead of building up and ed^blifhing a kingdom, is de- 
(Iroying it. Ignorant as the heathen Jaw-givers were, they were 
wife er.ough to know, that without religion of Come kind, the 


C II ) 

Handing, the idea of a God, and that he was to be 
worfliipped ; but the diabolical rites of their wor- 
fhip declare aloud their natural ignorance of the 

C 2 object, 

people would be rebellious. They profefs'd religion, and, if 
they were not in earneft, had hypocrily enough to make the 
people believe they were, and cunning enough not to let the mafk 
ilip, well knowing the people would not conform to their laws 
and orders, if it was known that they themfelves aim'd not at 
•onformity to the laws of their gods ; for they knew there was 
no catching birds in fight of the net ; that if they mocked God 
and things facred openly, the people would mock them. The 
modern infidel plan of ridiculing every thing iacred and divine 
is, therefore, not only extremely idle, but it will cfFedlually defeat 
every fchcme iuch men can lorm for their own or the public 
fafety, and mull infallibly end in anarthy. To think of regu- 
lating the manners of the people by law, while the manners of 
the legiflators are not regulated by the law of God, and the 
people know it, is the dream of a madman : Can we expeft 
oxen to plow without yokes, or hories without gears ? No, they 
will roam at large, fnort at their mailers, and refufe obe- 
dience. It was to prevent this licentioufneis in the people the 
Heathens pleaded the divine origin of their laws, the apo- 
theofes * of their kings at their death, while others claimed that 
dignity while alive ; lome pretended they had communion wi:h 
the gods ; others, that they were their for:s. This procured re- 
verence and obedience from their fubjeds, and carried authority 
with it, while the moderns have loll it, by proclaiming them- 
felves the fons of Belial. Hence the magiltrate has lolt his au- 
thority, and the people are fwallowed up in prcphanity, and 
running tantivy into deliruftion ; hence men are not obedient 
for confcience fake, but for the gallows fake j but this will only 
make them vigilant for mifchiet, and eager for revenge and 
plunder when they can elcape undifcovered. This artificial po- 
licy, void of religion, prompts men to fet up for themfelves = 
they are all for rule, but have none to obey ; they would all be 
Kings, but, inftead of fubjeds, find rebels. This is vox populi, 
but not vox Dei : But is not the voice of the people the voice of 
God ? No one ever faiJ fo till the devil, Daniel De Foe, and 
the republicans, promulged it, and from them, the mob. Fol- 
low therh to Tyburn on an execution day, or afibciate with 
them on an eleclion day, or herd with them when they think 
they have leized a thief, and got him to the horfe-pond, and 
judge if their roar and fcntence has the appearance of God's 
voice, or God's dictate. Whenever our property, liberty, or lives 
are at ftake, we wifh for a higher tribuaal. The voice of the 

C 2 people 

* lelfjing of them. 

( u ) 

ph'y:^, gnd of the manner of worfhipping him ; 
nor will in follow, that, becaufe they had fume idea 
of a God, and that he was to l?e worOiipped, there- 
fore it was inborn and natural : on the contrary, 
it it certain, that all the knowledge the Pagan world 
liad of God, or his worfhip, was by tradition frorri 
the Ilebrews •, and, had not they themfelves had a 
revelation from God, they had been as ignorant to 
this day, and more fo, than the Heathens were 

Clear as this is to every man who has read, or 
thought, or reafoncd, many of our modern learned 

people to Mnfes was a proclamntion of rebellion againft God : 
*' 'Inou hail brouohr us into the wildeinefs to kill us ; thefe be 
" thy gods, O HVael j ye kill the Lord's people. Crucifv him, 
•' crucify him," was the voice of the peopie, when the earth, 
o'jaked, and the fun blufi^ed at the a»!:lion. What hath it been 
imce I pray ? Why, fince this kingdom has been blefTed with the 
difcovery of the law of nature, and that that is the law of God, 
the people are fo improved in their underllaiidiiigs, that their 
voice gives us its fenfe, aiid has fet us over every doubt, while 
the vali: continent of America, and all our foolilh neighbours, 
JiaA'e been in\olvcd in gloom from the creation of the world ; 
not able to find 'it out: our divinity, our philofophy, our. 
politics, OUR morality, aie now, upon tiiac plan, too plain to 
admit of hehtation. 

O the delight of infatuarion, the pleafurc of cheating our- 
fclves ! to prevent th-.' plagje of thinking. Who would part with 
it^ Who would jiiquire at the oracle whenhe can wrap himfeiK 
in a fool's paradife, fliut his eye«, and, at the fmall e.xpcnce of 
])clieving a lie, be happy ? In this we out-do the Papifls, for we 
frame a God for ourfelves, invciit a law for ourfclves, pay what 
obedience to it we pleafv.', and for oar def ciLMicies abfolvc our- 
ielves. We arc cur own priefis, confefibrs mediators, coun- 
fcllors, and every man has a com.mon-weal:"; in his own bieall-, 
a fyllcm of diviniry fpun out of h.s own brainr, and the laws of 
lic.ivcn arid car:!i mull tr-uckle' to his will. O delicare Ailem j 
'J'he de\ il, Nimro'd and ail his priefss, were novices at that time, 
nftr able to di^vife fuch a quietus for the confcience ; nor tvcr 
threw the reins upon the neck of their people in this manner ; 
they were ignorant, nor knew the fwcets of libtrtinifm. It is 
not n:)w faihionaSIe to fearch the fcripturcs, or thofe dreams 
would vaniih : No, cur rViO'krn nj.'':'a':res know better : they 


( 15 ; 

gentleinen, as they would be called, extol the light 
of nature, and the wildom of the Heathen world, 
and oppok it to the revelation of Godj without 
.confidcring, if we are thus illuminated by the light 
of nature, an external revelation might miflead us; 
for, a written revelation and an innate natural law, 
£light] call it what you will, are fo far fronn being 
compatible, or illucidating each other, that they 
naturally extinguifh each other. He that cannot 
fee this will never be a conjurer, his head is not 
fumed for thinking. 

The will of one man cannot be known to another, 
unlcfs he reveal it ; much Icfs can the will of God 


chafe to grope in the dark, to gratify their appetites, and remain 
ignorant of what we have clearly reveaPd in them. The DI- 
"VINE Original of government, while many of our mailers in 
ifraei lead us back to the Pagaus to find it out, and fet up their 
fchemes of compaft, rejeding the inftitution of God, recorded 
fo frequently and clearly in the facred volumes. As to the ftate 
of nature pleaded for and mention'd above, fince Cain could not 
agree with Abel, when they had nothing to quarrel about, and 
unlefs lions, tygers, wolves, &:c. could agree under one head, and 
mutually part with their prey and their property to one another ; 
1 am no: very readily inclined to believe it; and, in the interim, 
the reader mult indulge me to laugh at him if he does; for fure 
I am, as foon as he underftands the fcriptures he will forgive 
me, but fcarcely himfelf for negledling them fo long. But as I 
am not writing a fyflem of government, and have only mentioned 
thefe things, to Ihicw what a dangerous ftroke the negleft of the 
fcriptures, and the alarming fpread of deifm have had upon our 
politics and the manners of the people, 1 Ihall leave it to the 
corifideration of my fuperiors, when I have obfcrved here what 
I have proved elfewhere, that the fcriptures were given, and are 
able, to make men wife in politics, in philofophy, phyfic, &c. 
and to eternal falvation ; but that while they remain ignorant of 
them, all other learning will leave them miferable fools ; and, 
for demonftration of thi.-, I need only refer the reader to the 
infidels of the preit-nt age ; he will find them unhappy, and ig- 
norant above all men. excepting in a very few feculaiities, and 
money matters : and as they reiufe to be taught by that revela- 
tion that God has given us ; fo they muft remain groping in, 
darknefs, and in docbt about the light, tho' it fhines all arcun 

( 14 ) 
be known, his invifible power and godhead, and 
how he will be worshipped, til! he is pleafcd to make 
fome revelation or other oi him (elf. 

The coniroveriy then betvveen Chrifcianity and 
natural religion, will tarn upon this point, namely, 
*' By which way God has made this revelation, 
** whether by a written record, or an inward law, 
•' light or reafon ? That it cannot be by the latter, 
*' we prove thus : When the Tenfes have adled upon 
•' any material, natural, objeft or thing -, what they 
" take in of that object or thing,, and retain by thac 
" aftion, is the inward fenfe of that object or 
" thing ; and the knowledge we gain by fuch re- 
•* peated a6ts of the Jenles upon nature and her 
*' operations, is natural knowledge, or phyfics :. 
*' when we have made ufe of thofe natural and ac- 
** quired ideas, to help us to the knowledge of 
** fpiritual things, the knowledge wc hereby gain 
" of God and his operations, is Jupernatural knov;- 
*' ledge, or metaphyfics. In this fenfe, and no 
" other, metaphyfics are allow'd. Here is no 
*' reafjning a priore ^ nor aught but the dormant 
" principle of reafon, which God put into the 
** foul, not grown naturally into cxercife, but 
** brought into it by inUruftion and ufe. Thus, 
" by things that are vifibie, and within the reach of 
•' our fenfes, and which we Can underdand, we 
*'• are led to the knowledge of things which are in- 
*' vifibie, beyond the reach of our ftnfes, and which 
•' we could not otherwife underltand: and fince it 
*' is certain and granted, that we have no innate 
*' idea?, furely nothing can be in the underflanding 
** but what comes in by the fcnfc-s ; we therefore 
" have no ideas of God and fpiritual things, or we 
*' mult have them by our fenfes: but our fcnfcs 
" cannor aft immediately upon fpiritual objects, 
*.» bccaufe they are not the proper objeds of fenfe: 
t*. tiicrefore, we muft have our sdcas of fpiritual and 


(15 ) 

'•' Invifible things from natural and vlfible ones: 
** but natural and vifible things can give us no ideas 
*' of fpiritual and invifible ones, unlcis they beM" 
*' fdme analogy to then), and that analogy be re- 
" vealed too -, unlefs they are the fimulacra, or 
*' images of them ; and, if they be the images of 
** them, they mud have been created and framed 
*' by God the Creator ; and to this very end, and 
** Vv'ith this very defign : for nothing could be 
*' created by infinite wifdom but with fore-know- 
** ledge and defign." And fince v/<- find in the 
fcriptures things reprefentcd to us under the ideas 
and names of vifible things, it is a demonftration in 
itfelf, that God framed them to reprtfcnt himfelf, 
and what he pre-intended to reveal of himfelf and 
his ways to mankind. The fcripture then is the 
fpeculum by which we view God's works, his works 
are the emblems by which we conceive of him, and 
whofoever attempts to reafon about divinity or na- 
ture by any other means, or in any other manner, 
inftead of being a reafoner is a very weak man, to 
iay no worfe ; for he muft and will mifiake his own 
dreams for reafon ; and if he will trace the origin 
of his own reafon, and that of the Heathen world, 
he will foon be convinced of it. 

It is prefumed it will be allow'd, the ability to 
reafon truly flows from the wifdom of the informed 
mind, and that then it is wifdom, or the effect of it ; 
if fo, falfe reafoning muft fpring from the weaknefs 
of the uninformed mind, and is folly : and fince by 
wifdom the world knew not God *, we muft 
therefore have recourfe to fome other refource than 
to the world, or the v/ifdom of it, or we muft re- 
main fools. 

What that can be that can make us wife but a re- 
velation from God, I cannot conceive. The out- 
ward face and operations of nature we can fee •, 


* 1 Cor. i. 2 1, ic. 


?C5 Internal frame and invifible mechariifrri we, h'/ 
Cur natural abilities, can form no notion about. 
How then fhall we reafon about or difcern the ana- 
logy its internal parts have to the fpiritual world, till 
it be revealed to us ? *Tis impolTible. Let the 
curious fire-engine, now emptying water from the 
lead-mines inDerbydiirc, be a rough inftance. That 
machine was the contrivance oi men who under- 
ftood God's revelation of the mechanifm of nature. 
Let the wifeft man living, who only views the 
external furface of it ; let the lunatic Reviewers, 
who think they underftand every thing, ftretch their 
long ears to its noiie, they will be never the wifer, 
till its internal mechanifm, and the infinite torce of 
the fluids which move it, has been explored to them. 
Its external form, and its eff^ecls, may make them 
Hare as a cow does at a fl range objeifl ; but without 
a revelation of the internal motion of its parts, and 
what the movers are, they will never be able to corne 
at the reafon of its operations. It this be the cafe 
in a piece of artificial mechanifm, how immenfc is 
the difference between that and the infinite works of 
an infinite God ? Blufli ye worms of earth, drop 
your pride, fearch the fcriptures, and fubmit to be 
taught by your Maker, that you may be delivered 
from your ignorance. In the fcriptures you will 
foon fee, at lead you may, that thofe parts of nature 
that we have any concern with, and which lie be- 
yond the reach of our underllandings, are revealed 
and made plain, to affift: and improve our minds ; 
and thofe parts of nature which lie more level to 
our underfiandings, and with which we are more 
converfant, mutually explain the fcriptures. For 
in them we are frequently retcrred to the more ab- 
ftrufe parts of nature ; and when that is the cafe. We 
never tail to find them explain'd : fomrtimes we are 
referred to matters of art and operation, which we 
are or ought to be acquainted with, and which never 
3 fail 

( i; ) 

frtil to explain the fcriptures. The cinpaganired 

reader may find many inftances of both luris inter- 

fperled in the facred writings. The want of room 

obhges me to omit the circumftantial accounts I had 

inferted of many ot them, and only to refer to a 

few inltances. When thefe fads are difputed, an 

ample account of them (hull be produced. In the 

interim, the learned reader may be convinced, by 

turning to his Ht brew bible. Gen. i. 4, 6, 7, 14, 

18. Lev. i. 17 ; V. 8 ; x, 10 ; xi. 47. Num. viii. 145 

xvi. 21. Amos iii 12. In thefe and many other 

places v/e find ^12 badal as a verb, fignifies to 

divide, to feparate, to fever, to tear to pieces, &c. 

in Num. xxxi. 22. Ezek. xxii. 18. xxvii. 12. we 

find bl2 as a noun, the name of Tin. That the 

fcripturc here fhews us the true nature of Tin in its 

Hebrew name '^"(i which, as above, is to feparate, 

fever, &c. and that this is infallibly its true nature, 

no man fhall deny, for no art or ikill can mix in 

with other metals, but they are thereby fpoii'd, 

rendered immalleable and ufelefs. Its mixing ufe- 

fully with minerals as flubborn and brittle as itfelf^ 

will not be admitted as an objection. Hence 

Ifaiah i. 25. God's promife to take away all their 

Tin, has in it a mafculine elegance which every 

clafilc author muft veil before. In this inftance the 

fcripture explains a part of nature to us, the truth of 

which the experience of all ages confirms, and the 

fruitlefs^ attempts of all future ones to render tin 

malleable, will corroborate. 

In Jer. vi, 29. The sense of fcripture is fhewn 
by the knowkoge of an art or operation, withouc 
which the text is not only oblcure but unintelligible. 
The bellows are burnt, the lead is confumed, &c. 
The man with his head full of modern learning, 
who knows not how filver is refined, cannot con- 
ceive what the burning of the bellows, and the con- 
fumption of the lead means here, and that wnen 

D thai 

( IJ^ ) 

chat happens, the filver can never be made finer, 
but will always remain unfit for the workman's ufe. 
Similar cafes may be fecn Jcr. iv. 3 •, ii. 22. Prov. 
xxvi. 20. Hofea X. 12. and in ahnoll every chapter 
of the bible : wherefore, to luppofe a man with his 
rabbinical learning, his heathen Greek, his inborn 
liaht of nature, his fitnefs of things, &c. 'without 
a knowledge of nature, able or fit to comment 
Icripture, is as extraordinary as to expect a cat div- 
in"" in the Atlantic to catch filh, rtioukl fucceed. 

If Hebrew names and words differ from the am- 
biguous babble of the modern infidels, by having 
their fenfes fixed and determinate, and this has been 
proved by men of the greateft learning ; it is pre- 
Ibmed none will have the audacioufnels to deny it: 
if they do, it is a truth which I affirm upon evi- 
dence, and will not give up. Hence it has, and 
may again at any time, be proved, that the Hebrew 
language is defcriptive, that the clear evidence of 
Chrillianity rifcs out of it, that it was exhibited to 
Adam, invifiblcs by vifibles, pall and to come 
by types, emblems, facrifices, &:c. that Jews and 
Gentiles underftood them ; that the knowledge and 
tradition of the whole heathen world, by ignorants 
now called the law of nature, rofe from them ; that 
by abufing the traditions they carried off, they funk, 
into the ignorance in which they now grope : fa 
that the knowledge tivey have or ever had, is fo far 
from being the blaze o-f a natural light, or arifing 
from an innate natural law, that it is, in its higheft 
fplendor, only fimilar to the horizontal gleam of a re- 
tired fun, the dying evanefcent fhade of an original 
revelation : and he who has not readino-and learning: 
enough to Ite this, if he is a man who pretends to 
learning, is paft my cure; the rcafon is, bccaufe 
he is too ignorant to be taught •, jior will he be able 
to follow in tracing the fcripture-account of things 
belaw. He ii in the condition of a tcheol-boy who 


C 19 ) 

,lias loiindercd away his time, and played truant, 
and when grown up in his ignorance, ridicules the 
learning he rejeded and refufed to be taught. 
This is and muft be the cafe of every one who re- 
jeds revelation ; for no man ever yet rejected it 
upon evidence. Such reje<5lors are in the condition 
ot the Quaker, who when difputing with his neigh- 
bouring farmer a crofsthe hedge, and was pinched, 
reply 'd, P>iend, thou may 'It fay what thou wilt, I 
will never be convinced -, but if thou fay'ft anj' 
more, I will come and confound thee with my 
thorn bill. If therefore it be unreafonable in a bo^r 
to reject the inftrudions of his parent, to reject the 
education of his fchool- mailer, for the lake of 
playing with cockie-fhells and baubles, gadding and 
lurching to catch birds with fait ; how much more 
fo muft it be for men who call themfelves reafon- 
able, to rejedl the original fountain of inftrudtions, 
the written revelation of God, to follow their own 
wild imaginations. This is like throwing the com- 
pafs over- board to guefs at the courfe, parting with 
our journal to find out the longitude at lea. When 
it is a wife and prudent action to quit a faithful and 
fkilful guide, to follow a Will-o'th'-wifp, to quit 
the path and tumble over a precipice, I will never 
more charge the votaries of the law of nature with 
afting contrary to reafon. If they reply here, that 
their fouls are like the miraculous Olybian lamp, 
that they have an inward fource, and need no 
foreign fupplies; I wifh them joy of their phrcnzy. 
If they objedt, by alking, " VVho taught the fpider 
*' his mathematics? How comes he to lodge in the 
" center of his web, that he may fally upon all oc- 
*' cafions to any part of the circumference ? How 
" he comes to premeditate and forecaft ? For, if 
" he did not know that there are flies for him to 
*"■ feed on, he would not watch for them, nor fpin 
*' out his bowels in tliat exquifite form and texture ; 

D 2 *' for 

( 20 ) 

^* for it is certain he who ordained flies for his 
** fuftenance, gave him alio light and fkiil to exc- 
>' cute his ordinance. 

** Who taugiit the hare to countermarch, when 
^* fhe doubles her trace in the purfuit, to confound 
♦' the fcent, and puzzle the hound? Who counlels 
** her to flride from the double to her form, that 
^' her (Icps may be at a greater diftance, and, by 
•' inference, fhe the more dilficult to find out? 
■ * Certainly this is a well ordered policy, enough 
*' to prove that God is not abfcnt from his creature, 
'* but that wifdom reacheth mightily from one end 
" to another, and that an incorruptible fpirit filleth 
'' all things/' 

I have elfewhere fhewn the difference between a 
inan and a beail, the different axonomies they are 
under, with the rcafon of it : if the objector chufcs 
his lot and abode with the latter, I congratulate 
him, and leave him in full poflefnon of all the 
privilcg'-\s of his community. See i llay on Infpira- 
tion, page 171. There he may fee their charter, 
which renders a reply here needkfs. When any one 
can overthrow vjhat is advanced above, and m the 
tflay on this fubjed, it fhall be further attended to. 
in the fnean while we pafs to the 

Second prppofuion, viz. The dodrine of a 
triune God is to be found in the fcriptures, and is 
ijot contrary tq reafon. 

I am now to addrcfs the infidel's near kinfman, 
the anti-trinitarian; he is the greater fool of the 
two. The tormer cuts the matter fhorr, and be- 
caufe he -ikes not to retain God in his knowledge, 
IS refclved to have nothing to do with him •, there- 
rore gives himfflf no concern about his revelation, 
fxcept to find iault v/ith and oppofe it, and chufcs 
tp krep hijrJtlf in the molt profound ignorance, 


( 21 ; 

and to live and die in doubt. The latter owns a 
rtvelation from God, but will have the conftruing 
of it himfelf, and will hew out of it a God to his 
own liking, or he will have none. But, if the He- 
brew fcriptures areas above (Inlpiration, page 150.) 
fixed, and determined by fenfible objefts and the 
mechanical laws of nature, the liability of which, and 
their agreement with the revelation of God, was 
fettled and appointed by the omnipotent and in- 
finitely wife Creator •, is it not attacking a munition 
of tocks, a running upon the thick bofies of the 
buckler of the Almighty, to prevaricate about it, 
or to wreft it to our own filly fyftems ? 

The do6f rine of a triune God is ftrong and clear, 
and would remain fo if men, whofe minds are 
earthly, carnal, and deviliih, did not employ their 
wanton imaginations againft it. They throw the 
blam.e from themfelves, yet they only are to blame 
for fplitting that truth into a thoufand heretical and 
damnable diftintlions, and anti-fcriptural whimfies, 
while their zeal, poilbned with ethics, breathes out 
contentious and burning calentures, and their faith, 
quitting her wings and perfpedive, leans on the reed 
of a fyllogifm i nor have they aught but their own 
homefpun creed (for a creed they have) to eftablifh 
their wild chimerical fyftem upon. When the 
do6lrine under confideration ftandsin need of quirks 
and forced confhrudions of fcripture for its fup- 
ports, or of the reveries of Clarke, Sykes, Tay- 
lor, &c. &c. we will call in their friends to our aid, 
or give it up, but not before. My reafon for omit- 
ting the ufual arguments by which that doftrine is 
proved, is not becaufe I neglect them, or, becaufe 
1 think them inconciufive, but becaufe they are to 
be met with every where i for when I find the fame 
names, the fame works, the fame glory, &c. at- 
tributed to each of the three divine perlons, I have 
pp way to avoid believing their proper divinity 


( 22 ) 

and equality, but by denying the truth and per- 
fcdion oF the fcriptures. The dodtrine of one God 
is not a principle of natural religion, tho' it be of 
the excited reafon of all mankind ; for the Trini- 
tarian has but one God any more than the Uni- 
tarian : the former maintains thedoclrine of a triune 
God, the latter denies it : but notwithftanding the 
prejudices of the prefent age againft the doctrine 
i;f the trinity are heighten'd by artifice and a pom- 
pous pretence to learning and reafon ; and tho' they 
domineer over and hcdor every man that believes 
it, as if he was a madman or a fool -, we will fo- 
berly attempt to remove this prejudice in iober 
minds, by trying what fcripture and reafon will do 
together, in iupport of that do<5lrine, and when 
that fails us, we will give it up and commence 

The fcriptures give us an account of perfons 
called Cl*2"l Kubbim, great ones : to fliew what 
and who they are, is our prefent bufineis. What 
then, and who are they ? Thty are divine pcrlons 
in the f^icrcd trinity, each of whom are equally 
y^ Rub, a great one*. Is this a didate ot the 
law of nature ? No, for that knows nothing at all 
of a deity. How came the Heathens by the idea 
then, tor they had temples too, and worlliipped 
Cni great ones? They worfhipped only ficut 
C*Il"l the fimilitudes of the real tZ)'2^ Rubbim j 
the powers in nature for the framer o\ nature, by 
miflaking the exemplar for the prototype, the crea- 
ture for the Creator, by an obfcure tradition, the 
original ot v/hich they received from revelation, as 
they did all the knowledge they had, and but for that 
bad neither worfhipped -H^Hn nor ficut Cl^^l. 
Will the LEARNED ethnics you are dealing with 


* It is to be noted here, that this is the epithet from whence 
tbe Jewifli dodors impudently afiumed the lide of Rabbi to them' 

ivlvc. in the New Ttllanieit, coiitinucJ to this day. 

C 23 ) 

silow that? No. What will yoi) do with them 
then? When they will lend a fobcr attention, we 
will prove it to their faces ; if they wink hard, we 
will negledt them for their prophanity, and pity 
them for their more than heathen ignorance. The 
Heathens blundered for want of a revelation, >the 
moderns blunder after them with a revelation in 
tht-ir hands. The poor Heathens aimed at fub- 
ftantiating phantoms, the poorer moderns aim at 
making mankind bow down to their fhadows. The 
lormcr millook the traditions of their fathers for 
truth, the modern infidels miilake their traditionary 
dreams for the law of nature, and call that the law 
of God. Could we raife the elder Heathens from 
their graves, they would laugh aloud at the infidel 
for dcfpifing revelation. Thofe knew what to ex- 
pect from the C^l but miftook their fimilitudes, 
the agents in nature, for them ; thefe neither knov/ 
what to expert from the D^^l nor what nature is. 
If any one tells him, he mocks and fneers, fhuts his 
eyes, complains for want of evidence, pleads the 
right of private judgment, lofes his temper, and 
hates you. He flies to his marvellous reafon ta 
fet him right; but that mull fail him, till the 
reafon of a ijian born blind can determine the fl<;ili 
of an oculiil. yi Rub is the highell epithet the 
Hebrew, or any other language affords ; it is great 
in wifdom, power, flrength, or whatever can be 
termed a perfedion. C^*^"^ is its plural nuafcu- 
line. The true fupernatural tD'^21 Rubbim, is 
Jehovah Elahim, l1:eMeffiah is called ni Ezek. 
xxviii. 14, &c. If. liii. 2. " He fhaii procure 
iuftice to the t^'2") Rubbim, therefore will I di- 
vide him a portion with the uT'^HI Rubbim, be- 
caufe he fliall empty out his 2^S2 Irame to death, 
and bear the forfeiture of fin tOuZ^^n. Ibid. liii. i.*' 
" Who is this that cometh from CHi'? the human 
nature, with garments dyed, from the wine- prefs ? 


( 24 ) 
This is he glorious in his apparel, I "inD tnanf- 
feding the lecret in jullice. 21 A great one, to 
obtain falvation. Pf. xxxviii. i." And delight thyfclf 
in yiy &c. The Heathens, as above, had temples to 
tD^yi Rubbim, Amosiii. 15, reter'd to Cant, vii.4. 
Their Rubbim were indeed but the fimilitudes of the 
real C^"!; ncverthelefs, they worfhipped them by 
miftake, under various fymbois and emblems, heads 
of animals, which ulage they alfo received by tra- 
dition from revelation •, which has been and may be 
proved at any time, beyond contradi6tion. They 
"worfhipped Jupiter, Sol, Diana, Geryones, &c. each 
■with three heads. Janus had four. Plutarch afcribes 
many eyes and hands, Ariftophanes four heads, to 
Geryonc. Pfecate is pfiinted with three heads. 
Cerberus had three heads, which the Heathens made 
to reprefent the three regions of heaven, or the three- 
fold power of God. We find them frequently 
talking of their triple- formed, three-faced, three- 
headed goddcfs, the triple Hecate, the three-faced 
Diana, the three- faced Proferpine, the three- headed 
Mithras, &c. &c. Nor would they prophefy buc 
on a tripod -, and always treated the number three as 
a facred number, about which they had many fuper- 
ftitions. A multitude of inftances might here be 
produced to fhew that the Heathens had all of them 
a triune object of worfhip: nor had they aught but 
what they had traditionally from revelation. Wheri 
our wonderful gentlemen the oppofers or the 
neglcflors of revelation, who are lb fond of re- 
ceiving the law of nature from the hands of the 
Heathen, and of exalting their wifdom and natural 
Jight ; when they will tell us why they receive one 
thing with fo much grecdinefs, and rejeft another 
with fo much fcorn •, or when they have 1-earning 
enough to form an objedion here, which fliall fhew 
they underfl:and the fcriptures, or the heathen my- 
thology, and can account for the triple- formed ob- 
3 jeds 

( 25 ) 
je^ts of the heathen worfhip upon any other princi- 
ples than that of tradition, tiiey fhall be treated as 
men of learning, and indulged in their anti-trinita- 
rian ftupidity, and to put rings in ournoftrils, and 
lead us to the unknov/n land, where the law of nature 
is the rule; and were it not that that fupercedes all 
preaching, inftru6lion, and order, Mr. Caleb Fle- 
ming, &c. fliould have my vote to be A — B— PS 

The firft name the C01 Rubbim revealed them- 
felves under was that of C^H^?^ Elahim, cove- 
nanters to redeem. Mr. Fleming, and that clan, 
flart at this ; they are fo undepraved, immaculate 
and pure, that they need no redemption : and, for 
revelation, they can do without ; they have an in- 
ward light, which blazes fpontaneoufly to light them 
in their way to heaven ; a natural law inwrought 
into their being, fL^fRcient to direft their fteps ; they 
will accept of no more from their God, nor fcarcely 
thank him for that. Talk to them of a revelation 
to direft their reafon ! A Redeemer from fin ! or 
his merit ! they fpurn •, you affront the dignity of 
their natures, their high-born blood boils. Talk 
to them of a triune God, an incarnate Saviour, 
that his humanity is the divine Shekinah, they don't 
nnderftand you. It was at thofe doflrines Mr. 
Fleming's dark fire kindled and burft, and con- 
tinues to flame like the blazing fulphur, the flowing 
impure pyrope of Vefuvius. 

Notwithftanding this, CH^J^ Elahim is plural, 
and acknowledged to be fo by the whole learned 
world, and involves in it the whole myflery of our 
redemption •, and, if I were difpofed to urge au- 
thorities here, I have the greatefl on my fide that 
Europe can afford, fuch as have diflipated every 
rabbinical quirk that can be pleaded againft it. 
tD'K'^Il Baraim is another plural name, truly ren- 
dered Creators, Ecclef. xii. i, &c. The tranflatori 

E have , 

( 26 ) 
have, in thefe awd many other places, by rendering 
Hebrew plurals by Englifh fingulars, anticipated an 
objeclion from Plalm xl. 6. *' Thy throne, O God, 
is lor ever and ever, the fcepter ot thy kingdom is 
a right fcepter." Here are two plural words in 
this verle rendered by fingular ones, and the voca- 
tive added. Read the verfe as it really i*;, and the 
objection vaniflies. Thy throne, the Elahim, is 
tor ever and ever, the fcepter of thy kingdoms is a 
right fcepter: nor does the apoftlc's quotation in 
Heb. i. at all controul this, for it cannot be deny'd 
that Elahim in the Old Teftament is rendered by 
Qs^ in the New, and that they had no better word 
in the Greek language to render it by : it is as 
certain ©«©^ is to be underftood plurally, Luke 
xii. 20. " Thou fool, this night they will require 
thy foul :" Who will require it? The Qioi will re- 
quire it. Thofe are enough for our prefent pur- 
pofe. I want to know what they will do with thofe 
plural names of God above. I doubt not but the 
firft ufe they will make of them, will be to form an 
objedlion, that they confirm not the dodrine of a 
trinity anymore than of a quadruplicity, &c. in the 
Deity. This is granted : all that they are brought 
for here is, to prove a plurality in the divine efience, 
and an equality amonglt them. The oncnefsof the 
Deity, and that this plurality terminates in a tri- 
unity, comes next to be confidered. But, prelimi- 
nary to it, I commend to their confideration, Deur. 

vi. 4. nnN\rmn» ^vnhi^ n^r\^ b^ntt^* rotj^. 

** Hear, O Ifrael, Jehovah, our Elahim, is one Je- 
hovah." It lies at the door of the Unitarians to 
make fenfe of this text, and many others, or to 
throw off the mafk, and deny the truth of revelation, 
rnn' Jehovah is here the name of that God who 
created the heavens and the earth, and all things. 
It is fingular, and lias no plural : but plural names 
are joined with it m a variety of places. If the 


(27 ) 
Unitarians have negltrdcd the Hebrew language fo 
long, till they know not how to conftrue it, nor 
know tlie idea defign'd to be convey'd to the mind 
in fuch places, they fhould have the modefty not to 
ccnfure thole who do. Nor have they a right to 
deny a doctrine they know not how to prove, or 
how to overthrow ; therefore common decencyj 
methinks, fliould make them confefs their isinorance. 
li Lord and God in this text convey the fame ide^, 
it is not common fenfe. It would be fimilar to 
faying, Hear, O Ifrael, the King our King, is one 
King. The Lord God, the Lord his God, the 
Lord their God, &c. are unideal phrafcs, upon the 
prcfent plan of rabbinical and Greek learning •, and 
till the Deifts and the Unitarians know the difference 
between that and the Hebrew, inftead of reafoning 
about fcripture and its doctrine, they babble. The 
name mn» imports and declares the felf-exillence 
of the divine Being and its unity. The plural names 
above, and thofe joined with it, contradict not this, 
as will appear by the frame of the language, and 
what the unity ot a natural I'ubftance is ; which when 
our Unitarians will ponder, tho' they now think 
they know better than the fcriptures can teach 
them, they may perhaps recover their modefty. , 
But, in anfwer to their objection. That number od'J 
is not number three •, nor number three number 
one i that three men cannot be one man ; nor one 
three : it is to be obferved, that that (lands in no 
kind of oppofition to the dodrine of a triune God. 
His unity appears from his name mn^ Jehovah, 
and from our trued conceptions of nature (me- 
chanical nature I mean ;) the plurality of perfons 
in the divine eflence, from the plural names above, 
and alfo from nature, in which fimple unity is not 
to be found j for there is not in the natural world 
fuch a fubftance -, nor is it pofiible there fhould. 
The infidel and the Unitarian rtiall have leave to 

E 2 ran^e 

( 28 ) 
range the animal, the vegetable, and the mineral 
kingdoms, and more if they can' find them ; and 
when they think they have got it, I will fhew them 
their miftake, and it they will pay the expence of its 
analization, it fliall be fliewn them, t'lat the highed 
fimplicity in natural lubftances is triune, and that their 
utmoft perfection confifbs in the due temperament 
of this triplicity, and that unity confifts in that and 
in that only. There is no paradox in this ; it is a 
natural fimple truth. The unity of the Deity is, 
therefore, a truth the trinity deftroys not, no not 
in its nature nor in our conception. The trinity of 
the Deity is a truth which the unity deftroys not. 

I come now to deliver the reader from his pannic, 
left he fliould think I confound plurality with 
trinity, by obferving, if earthly or natural things are 
patterns of heavenly ones, as the apoftle avers, 
Heb. ix. 23, and as the whole Icripture proves: 
if they are exemplars of the eternal prototypes, which 
the fcriptures warrant me to affirm, it behoves the 
Unitarian to examine his principles, rather than 
blindly objed : for he has taken them upon truft, 
without regard to the Icriptures or the natural 
world, tho' God created it to reprefcnt himfelf and 
the fpiritual world analogically. Wherefore there 
is in fcripturc another name of God, which when 
apply'd to nature, is the name of a triune fub- 
ftance ; or, it is the name of the trinity in nature ; 
that trinity in nature which under various emblems, 
as above, the Heathens miftook, and by an obfcure 
tradition, worfliipped for the fupernatural trinity. 
Hence I am warranted to believe and maintain that 
tiodrine, as authenticated by the fcriptures, and 
their agreement with the natural world: nor have 
1 any doubt, when 1 find myfelf afcertained of this 
truth by the genuine meaning of the CI2jy Shem- 
mim. This is the plural mafculine of C-ti^ Shem, 
and fignifies eminently the placers, the difpofers, 


( 29 ; 

rulers, &c. the names •, and, when apply'd to nature, 
the heavens. They differ not in fubilance, but in 
complexion, their fpiritual, efiential fimplicity being 
the lame, tho' they are triune. 

When the Unitarians can conftrue If. xl. 12. 
(Hebrew Bible) into Englifli, they Ihali be indulged 
the ufe of a pen ; if they publifli aught upon this 
dodrine before, they ftand chargeable with pro- 

We have an account of the tZV'Jti^ Shemmim, 
Gen. i. I, 14, 15, 17 ; ii. i, 2. &:c. &c. 

The mechanifm of the material heaven I have 
defcribed. Remarks, p. 19, dec. and by them mean 
that immenfe fluid of fire, light, and fpirit, which 
were the inftrun^ents in forming, and now fills the 
vaft expanfe of nature from the earth to the fixed 
ftars, and beyond, if aught be beyond. This I 
have affirmed the emblem, the fimulacra of the 
fupernatural trinity *. I expefl to be told I have 
here taken coach in a cloud to conceal myfelf: 
Verily I have not -, for I perfectly underftand myfelf, 
and will take all the pains I can that the reader may 
underfband me too. Heavens blefs you, is a com- 
mon phrafc at parting with a friend, and is ufed by 
the Jews from their forefathers to this day: whether 
that expreffion may not now be dwindled into an 
unmeaning heathenifh one, I will not fay, but once 
it was not fo. The philofopher Vv'ho dreams of 
nature, in that part of it we are talking about, to be 
avoid, will laugh at me for mentioning the material 
heavens ; but his mirth would be better employ'd 
at his own ignorance, till he gets rid of it : for, the 
proof of the exigence, and the defcription of the 
Spiritual, or real heavens, are taken from the ma- 
terial ones through the whole fcripture, where we 


* Job XX. 27. Pf. Ixiii. 9. Heb. ix. 23. Dan. xii. 7. 
Deut. iv. 26. z Chron. xxxii. 20. 

( 30 ) 

are perpetually referr'd from the latter to the 
former, which we fliould not be if the latter were 
a void. 

Job fpeaking of the hypocrite, fays, the tz^'>f2t^ 
heavens fhall declare his iniquity. Job. xx. 27. 
The plalmift fays, they fet their mouths againft the 
d^DSJ^ heavens, Pf Ixxiii. 9. The man clothed in 
linen upon the waters of the river, lift up his left 
hand and his right hand to the C^/tSS!^ heavens, 
and fwore by him that liveth for ever and ever, 
Dan. xii. 7. And for this caufe Hezekiah the King, 
and Ifaiah the prophet, the fon of Amos, cried and 
prayed to the COti^ heavens -, and Jehovah fent an 
angel, 2Chron. xxxii. 20. Compare 2 Kings xix. 14. 
If. xxxvii, 14. and you can have no higher con- 
vi<5tion, that C*^^, heavens, in the firil, is Jehovah 
in the two lad places •, I have finned againll heaven 
and in thy fight, Lukexv. 18, &c. If I am to 
be talked off here with a figure, I hope to be 
able to cypher that. 

The tranflators have in thcfe and many other 
places, taken very unwarrantable liberties in ren- 
dering Hebrew plurals by Englilli fingulars, and 
vice verfa. If this were admitted in fecial life, it 
would make fearful havock: nor is it to be doubted 
but the confequences have been more tremendous 
by admitting it into divinity, in tranllating a reve- 
lation from God. If a lawyer fhould take this 
liberty in tranflating a deed or will, abufe our un- 
derftandings, and transfer or leflen our property 
thereby, what fhould we think of him ? The tran- 
flators I doubt not, did it without feeing the confe- 
quence: but the man that will continue thus to 
mutilate and transform the great charter of Heaven, 
Would he fcruple to mutilate the great charter of 
the kingdom ? No. And were our lives, properties, 
and liberties to depend upon fuch a commentator, 
would he hefitate one moment about betraying 


( 31 ) 

us ? No, We cannot charge a higher fraud than 
this upon the Papifts, or upon their fpawn the 
Qtiakers. All this is owing to the pride of thofe 
who value themfelves upon their flock of rabbinical 
and clafTic learning, and to the vanity of our vvhim- 
fical rationaHfts ; tho' it is a truth known to every 
one who knows any thing of the matter, that a man 
may as well underftand and teach mufic without the 
gammut, as divinity or philofophy without the He- 
brew language. In that ,'anguage we find various 
plural names and epithets joined with his fingular 
name n^^^* Jehovah ; and the laft plural name 
2Z'DJ2^ Shemmim put* interchangeably put, for 
mrr Jehovah ; that is, the name of the trinity 
in nature, the material heavens: and, by analogy, 
when apply'd to the divine Being, of the fuper- 
natural trinity, this (Jehovah) the name of his 
undivided cflence. What will our Unitarians objeft 
here ? The impropriety of the Hebrew language ? 
The idiom of it? The ignorance of the infpired 
writers ? The unfaithfuinefs of God, and his defign 
to deceive us ? The re<5titude of our natural abilities 
to correal thofe blunders, and fupercede God's 
revelation? or what? If the infpired writers were 
ignorant, that God who taught man knowledge and 
language v/as nor, and his faithfulnefs is as the 
everlafting mountains : the propriety of the lan- 
guage and its idiom, is founded on the natural works 
of God: and the ftability of nature muft fail ere 
the propriety and idiom of the Hebrew language 
can deceive^ us, or be impeached with obfcurity or 
deficiency: and, if our natural abilities were fo 
perfect, we needed nought eife to guide us. What 
will they refort to next ? Why, notwithflanding all 
that has been faid, their blindnefs and conceit is 
fo incurable, that ihey conceive their reafon fo per- 
fed, and their inward light fo clear, as to difcern 
that if the dodrine of a triune God be contained 
I in 

( 32 ) 
in fcripture, it is no revelation from him ; the^ 
know better, and will not believe it. This I have 
had from their own mouths. This is throwing the 
mafk off, and telling us, they will have fuch a re- 
velation as they like, or they will have none, and 
fuch a God as they like, or they won't own him. 
But to return to the !Z>'/2ti^ Shemmim. In the text 
above cited, we find them and Jehovah fynonimous : 
we find them the objeft o\ Hezekiah's and the 
prophet Ifaiah's worfliip. Were they (the King 
and the prophet) idolaters here ? No. For, when 
they crycd and prayed to the CZ^Dty Shemmim, 
[heavens] Jehovah heard and anfwered, and fent an 
angel, &c. We find ^'>i2li^ heavens, as above, 
vi/hcn apply'd to nature, the name of a fubftance 
that exifls, and cannot but exift in a triune manner. 
This natural fubltance the tZ-t^^ has three names 
in the Hebrew fcriptures 3 they alfo exift in three 
conditions, yet are but one fubftance. And fince 
this is no fidion, it lies at the Unitarian's door to 
to fhew why, when it is apply'd to God, it fhould 
not mean a fupernatural triune obje6l. I affirm, for 
the reafons above, it does ; and till they can fliew 
I am miftaken, I (hall infill upon the reafonablenefs 
of it, and cenfure their underftanding for de- 
nying it. 

Our Unitarians would do well to confider the 
inevitable confequences that muft follow upon the 
annihilation of either of thofe natural agents, and 
in that cafe to determine what muft become (of the 
other two. If the elementary fire was deftroy'd, 
what muft become of the light and the fpirit ? if 
the light wereextinfl, what muft become of the fire 
and the fpirit ? If the fpirit were demoliflied, what 
muft become of the light and the fire ,'' If they are 
philofophers and not able to pronounce the fate of 
nature, upon the demolition of either of thofe three 
agents, they have no right to the name : for they 


( 33 ) 
are no judges oF their mechanifm, of triune agency j 
and all I have been faying to them is like reading 
a ledure in barbara and boroco to wild alfcs colts* 
If they have ears to hear I will tell them, the dc- 
ftrudion of either of thofe agents would and muft 
be the inftantaneous diflblution of all nature j for 
tho* they are in three conditions, and really and 
identically diftindl in their offices, they are but one 
lubftance. It is certain the elementary fire of nature 
is univerfal ; that the light of nature, by which 
objefls are rendered vifible, is fo too •, and that the 
fpirit of nature is not lefs univerfal than the two 
former. It is certain that they are in their nature 
imperifliable, incapable of diminution or augmenta- 
tion by any finite power. The light reaches from the fun 
to the extremities of nature, from the fun it iffues in 
a quantity fufficient to fill a concave fphere, equal to 
the earth's annual orbit, feven times in an hourj 
and, fince it is imperifhable, unlefs annihilated by 
Omnipotence, we afk what becomes of it when ic 
has pafs'd this orbit ? Can it flow to infinity, and 
for ever continue to flow from a finite body, the fun, 
without waft:ing it ? And would not there be a fuf"* 
plus of light, and a diminution of fire in nature ? 
And fince it is certain that the fpirit is the proper 
pabulum of fire, without which it is extind in a 
moment, and that it will for ever rufh into the fire, 
where fire is in adion, we afk. What prevents its 
rulhing into the fun, and becoming a pabulum to 
the fire there, and whether aught elfe has fupply*d 
the fun ever fince its creation, now near fix thoufand 
years ? or how it happens then that all the fpirit in 
nature has not been burnt up, or at leafl: diminiihcd 
long ago ? Can it feed the fun and preferve itfelf ? 
Can the fire fupply the world with a eonfl:ant duX 
of light, without being wafl:cd or fed ? ftrange in- 
deed ! Thofe are difficulties the ftridures of the 
common philofophy will not folve. If I am tojd 

( 54 ) 
that all above the atmofphere is a void, that is not 
true: for, if fo, I aik, what prevents the fpringinefs 
as they call it, of the atmofphere, from rufhing into 
that void ? This is a difficulty their patron coiilcJ^ 
never furniount. If a flood of light be perpetually 
flowing through that in>aginary void, which is in- 
falhbly the cafe, I fhould think it as full as an over- 
flowing river. Their fubtle fpirit wilt not help them 
here: for it is too fubtle for them to underiland, 
till they have rccourfe to the fcriptures. Have they 
confidered, that upon the joint adivity of thofc 
agents, depend all the effeds and operations of na- 
ture, the vifibility of objeds, the harmony of founds, 
the fapor of aromatics, &c, the favour of fait, &c. 
that the ufe of our fentes and faculties, the health of 
our bodies, and our very beings, are connected with 
their complexion -, that in proportion to their juftr 
temperament in our habits, we are in health, and in 
want of that juft proportion, we grow fick and fink 
into death. A certain illuminated myftic could 
tell the world, the ftars were the engines of God*s 
omnipotence, by which he wrought all his wonders. 
Who told him that, I cannot tell. How the omni- 
potence of God is aduated, I pretend not to tell : but 
fure I am, that all the mighty effeds in the vafb 
expanfe, on the earth and under the earth, and in 
the three natural kingdoms, are brought about by 
the initrumentality of this amazing triune fluid; 
flornis, tcmptftG, thunders, lightning, meteors, 
hail,, pain, trofts, fnow, and ice; the aftonifhing 
phenomena of eledricity, magnetifm, gravitation, 
eai-thquakes, vulcano's, &c. fruitful feafons, blafl:s, 
and mildews, dearths, and famines, in the vegetable 
kingdom; the rarity and denfity in the mineral 
kingdom, the particular proj^erties, and peculiar 
qaalitics of' the nu-tals ai:Kl minerals, are from 
hence ; and all the changes that can be made, and all 
»lK"*opcrat4ons-6hat eaftbe performed upoivthcm, are 
l-'« * iike- 

( 35 ) 
likewife from hence. Our culinary and foundar^ 
fires and their effe»5ts, our hghted candles, every 
flafh of gunpowder, &c. &c. and, in fhorr, all 
pature, and every part of nature, itands out with a 
glare of evidence to teftify thole truths, and con- 
trontthe gainfayer. The attempts of the antago- 
nifts to turn this into ridicule, won't affed: me at all, 
the fneer muft fall upon them Pelves amongft all wife 
men, and what others think of me, gives me no 

. " The above type, the u3\!3t2^ Shemmim, is fo 
'*' expreffive of the original, that it is impoffiWe to 
*' evade it; and conveys the great myftery of the 
** trinity to our underifandings by idtas of fenfe. 
*i The unity of the eflenee is exhibited to us by its 
*' unity of iubftance ; the trinity of perfons, by its 
** trinity of conditions, lire, light and fpirit. 
*' Thus, its one fubftancein three conditions, fhews 
*' the unity in trinity : and its three conditions in 
*' or of one fubftance, fhews the trinity in unity. 
*• And in this material created trinity, as in the 
" exemplar, none is afore or after other ; but the 
^ three conditions, as the three perfons, co-eternal 
*' together and co-equal : for Itt philolophers and 
•* reafoners confider air in the adion of fire, and let 
" them tell me which of its three conditions, fire, 
*' light, and fpirit, exifts before or after the other ; 
" or which can €xift without the other two. And 
** as God has created and framed this type the- 
*' heavens, into a machine capable of fupporting 
*' themfelves mechanically, by perpetual motion 
*' and circulation, in imitation of perpetual life, and 
" of communicating moJon and To life to animal 
" bodies; this is a type of the life they, the elTence, 
" have in themfelves, and alfo an emblem and. 
" type of that hie thty, tiie exemplars, have given 
" to the foul, and an emblematical earned -ind 
F 2 " pic<- {:5f» 

( 36 ) 
« pledge, that they will give it to the immortal 
»' bodies of men hereafter." 

When our Unitarians have philofGp"hy enough 
to underftand the mechanifm of nature j or fkill 
enough in the Hebrew language to form one ra-»- 
tional objection to the account given above, I will 
congratulate them, and be their difciple : but till 
then it would become them to be lefs dogmatical, 
and more model! in their cenfures-, for furely no 
man has a right to judge a matter without premifes, 
nor to cenfure what he does not underftand, un- 
lefs he is fure the author does not underftand himfelfj 
and that is not the cafe here. 

It will be, therefore, a poor (h'lh for the Unitarians 
and infidels to fay they don't underftand me here, whera 
every gentleman of real learning and reading will 
underftand me at once. The Anti-trinitarians are, 
therefore, at liberty to wink as hard as they pleafe ; 
to wrap themfelves in clouds and darknefs, and re- 
joice in the imaginary fplendor of their natural light j 
but a piece of charcoal, were it rational, might with 
more propriety, boaft of its internal, indofed, dark, 
^nd lefs mifchievous fmoke. If they objed that all 
above is wide of the point : as that will be putting 
the plummet of their underftandings into my hands, 
I fhall then prefently be able to fhew how fhallow 
they are. The moralifts have confounded their law 
of nature with the light of nature : by the light of 
nature the ancients meant the material light, by 
which objecfts are m^de vifible i and as that pervades 
and aftuates all things, they fpoke of it in the 
higheft terms •, the cloudy moderns, miftaking their 
fenfe, and to gratify their own pride, to fupport the 
imaginary dignity of their natures, have transfer'd 
it to the mind, and blended it with a phantom, 
which they call the law or light of nature, and kt 
If PP againft the revelation of God. By much fiKh 

( 37 ; ^ 
another blunder as this, another fct of ignorant 
cheats have fet themfclves to draw circles to conjure 
in, and ftudied to bind the devil, and lay him in 
the Red Sea, &c. But, by a worfe blunder than an 
attempt to chain the devil, the Unitarian has really 
let him loofe. For, to avoid the doflrine of the 
atonement of Chrift, which is abfolutely founded on 
that of the trinity, he has devifed a fchemc to pro- 
pitiate for himfelf i by fetting his moral obedience 
againft his moral deficiency, and making that the 
term of his acceptance with God. This is a crime 
for which it is hard to find a name. — This is not 
being moralifts by principle, but moralifts by trade j 
or, it is trading in morality, and bartering it with 
Heaven for its treafure, as men pay money to or 
barter ware with the merchant, for property ; it is 
making it the payment of a debt, and alternately 
taking frefh credit j and who, I pray, fcruples to 
be in debt to pay next week, or next month ? But 
this kind of morality admits of robbing for burnt- 
offerings ; of fhaving clofe, and grinding the face 
of the poor all the week, to be very charitable on 
a Sunday. I have known a moralift of this ftamp, 
who by conforming to a round of devotion, and 
putting a littlie money into the plate held for charity, 
has wiped ogt the remembrance of all pad fins, 
and began to fin upon a frefh fcore •, and paid that 
the fame way.. I fee not how this differs from being 
9 faint and a devil by turns. A very dangerous 
principle to introduce into fociety as the rule of our 
manners. I have known of thofe huckfters in mo- 
rality aim at keeping their accounts with Heaven, 
fomewhat like the Italian qiierchantile method ; they 
bad a pin-cuQjion fcarlet on the one fide, and black 
on the other : for every devout or good aftion as 
they deem'd k, they ftuck a pin on the fcarlet fide i 
fgr every gloomy thought, qf bad action, they put 


a pin on the black fide : at night they Icttled the 
account, by telling the nuiliber of pins.on each fide, 
and carried over the balance to the next day, and 
fonletimes found themfelves iri advance with" 
Heaven : when tliey found themfelves in arrear^ 
they paid with proriiifes and refolves for" the future j,' 
their whole cftate, when they could keep it no longer,, 
they left to build an hofpital ; thbufands of rams'> 
and ten thou lands of rivers of oil, the fruit of their 
bodies for the fin of their fouls, &c/ Is not thi^ 
driving a pretty trade think you ? But what le- 
curity have we here that the greattft moralifi: fhau 
not prove the worft man? tor his finhirig is onfyi 
going in debt at a pinch, he propofes to be in ad; 
Vance prefently. It is to be remembtKd he alwa'y^ 
audits his own accounts. ' , -,*^ * . \ 

,^ To obierve the various methods made ufe of by 
tV.ofe nioralifts to acquit themfelves' trom an infol-. 
vency with Heaven, to atone for their fins, and lay 
in a (lock of merit for hereafter, would urge the. 
mirth of any man, if the folemnity of the matter 
d'id not reflrain ft." 'This fort ot 'morality, as it' 
firings from ignorance and infidelity, can thrive 
with malice, revenge, pride, covetoufnefs, and every 
evil, bitter, abominable, and mercenary principle in 
fhe heart. Thofe are the genuine moral effedts upon 
rhe temper and life of the infolvent finner ; yet he 
can thunder for a moral law of nature, the moral 
charader, and the right of private judgment, and, 
with a fawning devotion and a falfe charity, Itrut in. 
mafqueradc, and challenge the whole world to ar- 
raign his faintfiiip. This is not a fchcme worked 
Op to ferve a turn, but is the real fl:ate of the cafe '^ 
the nature and root'of all the morality in the worlds 
not founded on, or fpringing from the doclrincs of 
the golpel, wrought into principles in the hearty 
The iormer is a glaring vapity, a talfe fpeculum for» 
' ■ ' ... foo'Is* 

( 39 ) .. . 

fcols to conceal their deformity ; the latter a Tub-' 
ftantial reality, flowing from the fimplicity of the" 
foul, from the affeAion of the whole heart ; it is 
the beautiful companion of heavenly wifdom, the" 
inhabitant of the heavenly heart, who loveth God 
and all his creatures much, becaufe God hath for- 
given him much. Convinced that God hath loved 
him, for his fake he Joveth all God's creatures. 
He is benevolent, beneficent, ready in every good 
office, in every aftion, to do good with a cordial 
good-will ro his friend or his enemy, and to prevent 
every mifchief in his power. So far from rooking, 
grinding, and opprefTing his fellow-creature for a 
little pelf, that if he has any anxiety, it is becaufe 
his capital is not large enough to relieve their di- 
ftreffes, and increafe their happinefs. Thefe arc the 
moral eftefts of the gofpel dodtrines upon the life 
and temper of a gofpelized man, and will always 
be admitted as the criterion of their goodnefs and 
truth. In thefe confifts the true imitation of Chrift 
Jefus, in his moral character : this is the god-like 
fpirit and morality of the gofpel : this is the princely 
fpirit of a truly moral mian : this is the morality we 
plead for, and make the criterion of doflrines, while 
wecaft the former, with all its cluftering plagues, to 
the bitterns. Let no man, therefore, charge the 
orthodox with not preaching morality •, for this is 
the noble morality they preach ; this is the heaven* 
born virtue they inculcate : a virtue, the brilliancy 
of which dazzles the eyes of the fordid mole, the 
pelfifh wretch, the felfifn gripple, the earth-born 
moraJift, who knows no God but gold, nor any 
devotion but in getting and laving it, and idola- 
troufly trufting in it ; v/hofe footy foul pays the 
fame adoration to it in his iron cheft, as if caft into 
the form of a calf, and he worfbipping and bowing 
before it. The ftupor and infidelity of this man*s 


(40 ) 

mmd, let his pretences be what they will, renders 
him incapable of reftraint, prompts him to prowl for 
more property, to ufe his talents, his learning, &c. 
as monkeys do flails, to do mifchicf, and laugh at 
it ; indeed, to conceal their dellrudive defigns, 
they plead and roar for a fuperficial morality, and a 
fycophant charity, overlooking the true root of both; 
unbounded in their wifhes, nor able to determine 
when they have enough. The revelation of God, 
wherein more than an equivalent, even infinite riches, 
IS propofed to the mind, to engage it to decline this 
evil, covetoufnefs, is by thofe Pagans in mafqueradc 
trampled upon and extirpated. To expedl a fair 
hearing from fuch, or to dream of a reformation in 
dcflrine or manners from men thus inveloped in 
covetoufnefs, and fallen into a delirium, is like ex- 
pefting lions to keep Lent, or to live upon grafs 
in fight of the fheep-fold. The language of thofe 
jnafqueraded infidels is, let us take care of ourfelves, 
and make the moft of this world, for we know nor 
believe any thing of the next. Thefe fools have 
faid there is no Elahim, therefore are under no law 
but what they frame for themfelves. In this fnare 
of their own making we leave them, with the highefl: 
confidence, that their homefpun fyftems of dotSrine 
cannot difentangle them, nor their natural light 
lead them out of it. 


( 4' ) 


To the Dltnciad, the Bedlamites at large^ 
the Critical and Lunatic Reviewers. 


MY confidence in your fwollen abilities prompts 
me to think you will not thank a man of 
my lize, when he tells you, he loves you -, nor for 
addreffing you : yet may you thank yourfelvcs for 
it ; for you taught me this familiarity : what un- 
profitable afi-'edions you have purchafed, this per- 
formance will difcover. I have long been your 
pupil ; and, if I have herein approved myfelf to 
you, it will perfedl my ambition. I value nothing 
but, what the truly learned are inriched with, 
judgment and candour : how far you are inriched 
with both, the public muft judge. I have huddled 
up a lefTon for your fpare-hours ; it was born in 
fuch a feafon when I did not fo much labour as 
play. If my patterning after your illuftrious ex- 
ample, in the liberties you have taken, has carried 
me beyond my cue, it is, you know, a trefpafs very 
ordinary with me. Truth cannot be urged with 
too much fpirit, fo that I have not finned with 
refpeft to the thing itfelf -, but the danger is, that 
my manner of treating you may be deemed to fall 
fhort of that reverence I owe you -, of this you 
yourfelves are the befi: judges-, for you have read vo- 
lumes enough to have made the inhabitants of a con- 
tinent wife i or to have foundered their underftand- 
ings. You have not only read, but feen the vanity 
of the world, the vanity of books, the Viinity of 
bafliawing it over* your neighbours, &c. fo thnt it 

G you 

( 4^ ) 
you are not wife, it muft be owing to a fatality. 
This muft be the cafe with you or myfelf : for, you 
have been thefe five years paft, cenfuring and cor- 
reifting my folly j but, wonderful to tell I I am not 
mended, and ye are grown worfe. 

It was a quere with Solomon, and argued the 
fupremacy of his wifdom. What was beft tor a man 
to do all the days of his vanity, under the fun ? If 
I have been fo happy as to find that out, it has been 
by retrogradating your fteps. 

I am not going to jeft with you ; but to treat you 
with a freedom, equal to that faucinefs with which 
you have treated your fuperiors : and, as you are 
not fuperior to me, as a member of fociety, I have 
a right to do fo. I had, indeed, fome debate with 
myfelf about this matter : but Homer*s battle of the 
frogs and mice had the fame pen with his Iliads : 
fucha defcent I hold it, toconteft with lunatics, after 
the delivery of inconteftable truths. The readers 
will obferve, therefore, that if I adminifter bitters to 
the Reviewers, it is in a pill, not in a pafTion, and 
when they know the ftubbornnefs of the difeafe, they 
will commend the phyfic. I hate them not, any 
more than a Ihepherd does his dog, when he knocks 
his teeth out, to prevent his worrying the flieep. 
We beat fpaniels and fetters, not becaufe we hate 
them, but to teach them their proper bufinefs. If 
my difcipline has this good efie<5l upon the patients 
1 have taken in hand, my end will be anfwered. 
My intention is not to put them to pain, for I would 
touch them tenderly, if their callofity did not render 
a contrary method abfolutely neceflary -, i. e. I would 
treat them as tame animals, if their dragons fronts 
did not forbid ; I would treat them as men of ve- 
racity, if they had not recorded their own l**s ; 
I would treat them as gentlemen, if they had not 
forfeited that character by their ill manners ; I would 
debate with them as^ learned men, if the traces of 


( 43 ) 
learning were to be found in their performances : 
but, when we look for thofe traces there, we arc 
in the condition of the winged tribe, attending the 
Oftrich for inftruftions and fkill, to build their 
nefts. Inftead of promoting learning, and reftoring 
the true fpirit of criticifm, as they promifed, they 
omit that, and fall fcurriloully upon mens cha- 
racters. Their grand plot Teems to be againfl 
Chriftianity and truth, and to club their barren 
brains to demohfli both. In this they a6t like In- 
dian bufh-fighters, who fire from their conceal- 
ments, kill, fcalp, and run ; or, like an Arabian 
banditti, who way-lay the honeft traveller to rob 
him of his treafure : fo they conceal themfelves in 
darknefs, to knock down and fpoil every author, 
who dares write truth or common fenfe: and, as 
Scythian dogs bark at the moon, fo yelp they at 
their fuperiors. I would diftinguifh the Critical 
from the Monthly, if there were any difference ; 
but as they are all of the fame hue •, or, as they are 
an united cabal of the blackeft black, incorporated 
into one condenfed lump of darknefs, roll'd anony- 
mous to an entire Dunciad j fo, I fhall treat them 
as one man. And who is he, I pray ? A name, a 
thing, and a nothing, a lunatic Reviewer, a malig- 
nant critic, who throws his javelins at random, and 
away to the clouds, from whence he hurls his 
thunder upon the firft head that comes within his 
view, and, when he has wounded it, he grins. One 
would think he had been in the Ganfa's litter i that 
he had been tranfplanted by them to the moon, and 
the height had dizzarded him and rarified his brains, 
condenfed till now : for, in unideal, cloudy fublimity» 
he obfcures himfelf, but fpreads a baneful, (linking 
polfon all around him. But, come thou babling 
domingo, thou clafTical dunce, gird up thy loins 
like a man, 1 will demand of thee, and anfwer thou 
me. Why hafl thou taken thy creed from the 

G 2 claflics, 

( 44 ) 
claflics, and vvreakeft thy vengeance on every one 
who has any other ? Dolt thou underftan' the plan 
of the Heathen clafiic authors, tnat thou giveft chem 
the preference to Mofes, the prophets, 6rc ? Haft 
thou any conception of Chriftianity, asreveai'din the 
fcriptures ? Or doll Lho-.i know it to be a cheat, that 
thou Ihootell thy Pofcupine ciuills at it ? Art thou 
acquainted with the frame q^ the lan9;uages in which 
it was wrote ? or knoweft thou the evidences upon 
which it ftands, and by which it is confirmed ? To 
thofe interrogatories 1 expect thou wilt have the 
modefty to anfvver in the negative, or hold thy 
peace. Art thou a judge of books ? If thou art, 
why are the beft exploded, and the worft recom- 
mended by thee ? If thou art not, and furely that 
is thy cafe, why then doft cenfure what thou dofl: 
not underftand ? Why haft thou abufed gentlemen 
of the greateft learning, of the greateft knowledge of 
men and things; whom the univerfity of Oxford, 
and many ot the learned world abroad, have paid a 
deference to, for their learning and integrity. Thofc 
thou haft treated with great infolence and ill man- 
ners. Why ? Becaufe they wrote in defence of re- 
velation, aMJ;- Chriftianity founded thereon -, of 
which thou knoweft no more than the wild afs of the 

Hence I can have no quarrel with thee for m.yfelf ; 
for thou haft ignorantly placed me in good com- 
pany, amongft whom I rejoice the more for having 
thy curfe. But how canft thou look mankind in 
the face for ftilting and puffing Taoaltbob, and 
others, which I will name at a fit time ? In the 
height of his holy frenzy he complains as if fome of 
the over-boiling zeal of the Syftematics, had fcalded 
his fhins ; his charity urges him to revenge, and he 
fpouts wild-fire at them. He feems to be a Myftic 
or a Qtiaker, for he has thrown a condenfed gloom 
in upon us, from their dark fire world. Its noife 


( 45 ; 

and bellowing threatens worfe dedrufllon than he 
complains of, and its aftringency only prevents its 
burfting. This grumbling (trollcr from Ephdus 
wanders and roams, and while his own Dianians are 
about him, vaunts and (Iruts upon their lliks, 
roars like thunder, and breathes nothing fhorc of 
univcrfal devailation. He has b^ien fo unufed to 
the light, that the moment he gets upon the borders 
of Gofhen, it dazzles and puts his eyes out. He 
gropes and ftaggtrs, he reels and tumbles, like a 
man intoxicated. Pie is for confounc^ing night and 
day, and making an evening, that then, like owls 
who catch mice in the dark, he might pafs for one 
of the difcprning few. This limb of the Dunciad 
feems to aim at unpope-ing the Pope, to take nis 
feat, that he might have the whole power of perfe- 
<?uting in his own hands. After/fie has complained 
of galling yokes, fyftems of nonftnfe, ancient o- 
pinions, &c. and inveighed againft every one •, and 
every rellraint to thinking, and doing what is right 
in his own eyes, pleaded indulgence for the fame, 
and ignorantly commended the (^iakcrs for this 
precious principle of theirs ; he attributes the great 
event of the reformation by Lutherj^^nd Calvin, 
whom he heartily hates, to chance, or to the power 
and politics of fome great men, who happened to be 
in the fame way of thinking with them. He next 
falls foul of the liturgy and its compilt-rs, charges 
it and them highly, avers it retains the doctrine of 
tranfubftantiation, fays it is the fame mifliapen, 
deformed and unfiniflied creature it was, and that 
they had only changed one Pope at Rome for another 
at Geneva -, and with implacable malice and enmity 
againfl the Geneva Pope, blunders on, brandilhing 
a two-edged fword at random, fcattering fire-brands 
^nd death, and breathes more tury againft all fy- 
ftems, eftablifhments, &c. than ever I faw in their 
warmeft defenders. Yet in his fury againft fyflem?, he 


^ 46 ) 

juftifies Servetus's fyftem of the trinity, and avers 
it to be confident with fcripture. What is all this 
for? Why, to extirpate all tftablifhments, articles, 
homilies, liturgies, creeds, confefilons, catechifms, 
iyftems, and order, that he might cram his own 
down our throats. He is fadly afraid the civil 
magiRrate fliould intermeddle in thofe matters; 
and, for Kar he fhould be abridged in his free- 
thinking and ading, pleads the tendernefs of his 

He cenfures I^uther, Calvin, Laud, Atterbury, 
Sacheverel, Bradbury, Pike, and Hitchin, for fools, 
tyrants, and papifts ; feems to put them all upon a 
level *, and is extremely angry that iheir zeal is half 
fo warm as his own. He next treats his reader with a 
forged quotation from Mr. Pike, and tho' he quotes 
the page, neither the words, the ideas, the fentence, 
nor part of ir, is to be found in the book. The 
fyftem hammer'd out at Weftminfter in the laft 
century, does not pleafe him at all •, the authors 
were men ot fallible heads, and more fallible hearts ; 
that is, they were not fo wife, nor fo honeft as 
Taoaltbob. That catechifm, the articles and liturgy 
of the church of England, its homilies, &c. fmell fo 
rank of Chriftianity, that they all offend his delicate 
nodrils. This is the hue of the man, and thofe are his 
features whom the Dunciad has recommended for 
a beauty, and would perfwade his reader he is a 
man of huge learning, candour, and ftrength of ar- 
gument. A wonderful fellow he is, indeed! his 
name is Grimes, and the fpleen which moved him 
to publifh, is very well known. Now, Snap, if 
thou haft any honefty, tell the world whether malice 
fimilar to that which moved him to publilh, did 
not excite thee to puff him off? I could multiply 
inftances of this fort, where thou haft pencilled, 
and deceitfully painted the fouleft figures, to hide 
their deformity, and palm'd them upon the public 


( 47 ) 
for beauties, or thou hadft not been an advocate for 
Judas" Ifcariot, in thy account of Macknight's Har- 
mony, where the excellency of his moral character 
is Ihewn. But this is not all ; I could produce as 
many more inftances, where thou haft drawn thy 
black brufh over the faireft performances, be- 
fmeared them to conceal their excellence, and prefent 
the world with a monfter. Why haft thou mangled 
the faireft charaders, and mifreprefented the beft 
books, till the public miftake the firft, and their 
authors the laft ? Was it becaufe thy reftlefs and 
implacable malice could not bear the truth they 
wrote? What have Meflrs. Pike and Hay ward done, 
that they muft quit their profefTions, and go to 
honeft trades ? When they are unfit for their prefent 
fundions, we will turn them into Reviewers: but, 
if they prove fuch faithlefs bunglers as the Dunciad, 
we will tofs them in a blanket, and break their 
necks : but, the firft thing to do is, to get rid of 
thofe we have: this, I think, ought to be done by 
fending them to fpin fifhing-nets, as the only proper 
province wherein they might fhine : bur, if they 
make no better figure in that than in their prefent 
ftation, we will tofs and fcrag them too. 

Why, Snap, fhould the dirty enthufiafts of Little 
St. Helen's, excite thy wrath ? Doft thou go there ? 
If thou doft, thou art a foul fellow : but whether 
thou doft or nor, thou deferveft to be flogM for 
fibbing; for the people go there clean and well 
drefs'd : if they did not, thou haft no bufinefs with 
it, as a Reviewer, and it is only an excurfion of thy 
malice. But, if thou didft at all underftand what 
an Enthufiaft is, thou would'ft know thyfelf to be 
more one than any that go there. Who gave thee 
the privilege of fkulking indarknefs, and bellowing 
out thine imprimatur, and thy non-imprimatur, yet 
canft give the public no true account of what the 
books contain? Doft know, Snap, what ufe rats 
I make 

( 48 ) 
make of their long tails? I will tell thee. Snap, 
and here is a piece ot Natural Hiftory for thee : when 
their maws are empty, and they are hunger-bitten, 
they ufe them as the Dunciad do their pens, i. e. 
they dip them in filth, and fuck them for fullenance. 
When thou haft anlwered thofc interrogatories, I 
have fomething elfe to fay to thee •, but as thou art 
not worth my Itay, will hallen to a clofe. I will not 
be an advocate for all the authors thou haft abufcd •, 
for many of them I will •, and, for pufHng off many 
others, I treat thee with high contempt; and, till 
thy cubs creep out of their dens, and make them- 
felves known, I muft treat you all as the hirelings 
of a bookfelier -, the huckflers of inBdelity ; the 
pedlars of error ; the brokers of libertinifm ; the 
promoters of anarchy and contufion •, the bane of 
lociety, and a common curfe to the public. 

What a condition are we in, to have our divinity, 
philofophy, phyfic, politics, and morality, retail'd 
to us through fuch dirty hands, through fuch con- 
taminated brains ! This is worfe than an Index ex- 
purgatoriur from Rome, or from fcientific coblers, 
and fcribbling F^cbrcw taylors; as dangerous as a 
Scale of Firft Piinciples from a rude and ignorant 
ftocking framer, whofe ftupidity had not been mi- 
ftaken tor learning, if our Snaps had not ftuff'd him 
with rtraw, and fet him in a blaze. 

They are like a flimily totally tainted with the 
yuke, the leprofy, or the pljgue -, they languifh 
under dangerous fymptoms : nay, difeafes fimilar to 
thole at full height, domineer over them. If the 
contagion had only feized a few, its fpread might 
be prevented, by taking care of them in a peft- 
houfe, or in Bedlam ; but, like the mange amongft 
a flock of fheep, it is communicable, and all that 
breathe in its baneful atmofphere are contaminated. 
The fick man is cured by gaping and 
fvvallowingi but the more he fwallows here the 


( 49 ) 
worfe, till the medicament be altered, and the man's 
judgment fet right, for he is in a Mania. 

They tofs the word Enthufiaft about, as if they 
knew the meaning of it: but, by their ufe of it, it 
appears they are as ignorant of it as a fhepherd is 
of the twy-weft point of the compafs. They apply 
it to every man who, upon the higheft evidence, be- 
lieves the fcripture, or profelTes Chriftianity. This 
man cannot be an enthufiall ; but, the fool who re- 
je<5ls the fcripture and Chriftianity for a law of na- 
ture, or for a Roman morality, is the very man ; 
and here I give our Snaps the preference. For, if 
I were limited to an orchard, and miftook the tree 
for the apple ; inflead of being nouriflied by the 
apple, I might be choaked by the timber. The 
miftaking one thing for another, the fubftituting the 
fruits of Chriftianity, or a heathen morality, for 
Chriftianicy, has been as great a miftake, as it would 
in tranfplanting, to miftake the branches of the tree 
for its roots •, and, how prepofterous it would be to 
fee a foreft of oaks, &c. planted topfy-turvy, I 
leave the Dunciad to judge. 

If the tranfcendent alTes think themfelves roughly 
treated here, they may take what vengeance they 
pleafe : but let them remember, they have without 
reafon, treated their betters with fouler manners. 
Their confcioufnefs, if they can think, and their 
pride, it is prefumed, will prompt them to pocket 
this quietly, in hopes the dirt they cannot wipe off, 
will wear out ; but, in this they fhail be miftaken, 
till I have ftopt or cured their faucinefs. The im- 
pudence of thofe patrons for fcandal, has prevented 
many a valuable performance feeing the light ; while 
they prompted night-birds and crawling worms out 
of their obfcurity, to annoy us i for thefe they have 
encouraged : but if an author wrote truth or com- 
mon fenfe, from their beginning, at him — 

H S$ 

So y'lght their fbaft was fet, 
The grey goofe-wnig thai was thereon. 
In his hearths blood was wet. 

Now, therefore, lift up thy voice. Snap, and afk 
thy cubs (for they have ears, and long ones too) 
whether they have not miftaken a few Pagan reliques, 
and Roman moralities, for truth and chriftianity ? 
and, if they cannot anfwer thee, whip them, whip 
them ftoutly ; and, if that won't do, get at their 
brains, take foap and nitre, and wafh them : if that 
fails, turn them out of thy den, and fend them to 
Siberia, that the fruits of their free-thinking may 
terminate on themfelves. The free thinking they 
plead for, confifts in having our thoughts fubjefl to 
no rule, nor reftrained by any : under this pretence 
lurks a fallacy: it is not their free-thinking, but 
their pertinacious babble, and impudent anions, 
which freely flow from their libertine thoughts, 
that is complained of. There needs no plea for 
free-thinking •, it is the privilege of every man, in 
■which he cannot be interrupted, hindered, nor de- 
tedled ; therefore, if they mean no more than free- 
thinking, their babble about it befpeaks them fools : 
but, by all that appears in their writings, it is certain, 
they intend to eftablilh a fyftem of ading as freely 
as they think ; and, their impatience at all reftraint, 
befpeaks them extremely bad men : for, fuppofe 
men were to bring into ad all the treafons, rebel- 
lions, thefts, murders, &c. which pafs through, 
and which the heart devifes, and every man were to 
plead his privilege for this •, what would be the con- 
fequence ? If they fay this is not what they mean, 
let them tell us what they do mean •, for, if they 
mean not this, they difpute for nothing, and they 
are pleading for the poflefllon of what no man can 
difpoflefs them. If I am in an impregnable fortrefs, 
and it be my own, how foolifli would it be to enter 


( 5^ ) 
into a babbling difpute about my property in it ? 
I have it, I hold it, let them take it from me that 
can : but, this is not the point with the Dunciad 
and the reft of the free-thinkers. Their pica for 
free-thinking is only a pretext, fimilar to a man's 
pleading the privilege of fire-arms, to defend him- 
felf againft his enemies, when his real defign is to 
kill his neighbours. And, fince they appeal to the 
moral effects of a doctrine, as the criterion of its 
truth and goodnefs, we appeal to the prefent man- 
ners of the kingdom, to corroborate our argument; 
for, ever fince this precious principle of free- 
thinking, and the right of private judgment, which 
is the fame thing, has been roared from the pulpit 
and the prefs, the degradation of the peoples manners 
has rendered them unruly ; and, when the brat is 
nurfed up to manhood, farewel to monarchy : 
iiiagiftracy muft dwindle into a phantom, the ec- 
ciefiaftics will be drag'd in halters to the pillory, and 
richly they deferve it, if they nurfe this viper in 
their bolom any longer. 

Free-thinking has a double afpeft ; as it refpeds 
God, and as it refpects fociety : my thoughts are 
under a law to God ; this refpedting him is the 
council of the ungodly, Pf. i. the combination 
againft God and againft his Meffiah, Pf ii. Re- 
fpeCting focisty, it is a republican cabal againft all 
law, order, government, and good manners. The 
Devil was the firft free-thinker, the firft republican ; 
and, his letting up the right of private judgment, 
and bringing it into aft, againft the law of his 
Maker, made him a Devil. Ever fince he has 
been plotting againft fociety; and, his emiflaries, 
by dexteroudy pleading his firft principles in hellifh 
politics, have nearly ruined this kingdom. All the 
abominations of Paganifm, as well as all the fuper- 
ftitions of the church of Rome, howfoever they have 
fince been impofed as a yoke upon the confcience, 
H 2 fprang 

( 5* ) 

fprang originally from this free-thinking principle, 
from this pretended right of private judgment, 
breaking out in overt adions, at Jafl: declared in 
bulls, briefs, decrees, cdi6ls, &c. for torture. Hence, 
to this day, fpring all the villanies, &c. in fociety, 
the imagination of man can devife. Hence arife 
wars, law-fuits, thefts, murders, rebellion, treafon, 
&c, &c. All the felons in our jails are free-thinkers, 
and but for that, and bringing their private judg- 
ment into a6f, had never been there. Could thofe 
republican wretches get rid of the Ihackies of govern- 
ment, (for they have always the mob on their fide) 
they would plead their privilege in arreft of judg- 
ment ; this they all aim at, in oppofing the laws of 
God and fociety. The revelation of God is their 
grand obje<5t ; next to that, to get rid of all eftablifli- 
ments founded thereon. How afiiduous they have 
been, and how they have laboured to obliterate the 
evidences of the former, and to extirpate the latter, 
to introduce anarchy, confufion and difcord among 
us, and to rob us of truth, and of every privilege 
worth our contending for, the writings of the Dun- 
ciad fhall witnefs. The whole drift of theDunciad 
is, to unprinciple the minds of their readers. In 
proportion as that point is carried, and men .are 
robb*d of their principles and become fceptics, in 
the fame proportion is the fociety they belong to 
ruined: for, there arc many who will cheat, who 
will not cut throats : there are that would debauch 
their neighbours wives and daughters, who would 
Ihudder at burning their houfes : but, fhew me a 
man that has no principles ; or, who having had 
principles, has fuffer'd them to be dertroy'd •, 1 afk. 
Where will he ftop? What limits will relfrain him ? 
He tramples upon law, fmilts at frontiers, mocks 
at magiftracy, delpifes immortality, hell cannot 
fright, nor heaven allure him. A cypher in fo« 
ciety ! No. A dangerous gulph, a, whirlpool, a 


( 53 ; 

quick-fand, barren, curs'd, and forfakcn by all 
good men. If the Dunciad think this is putting 
them in too ftrong a point of view ; when they ex- 
plicitly tell the public what thofe principles arc 
which they would inculcate, befides that of a general 
releafe from all obligation, we will acknowledge it, 
and ceafe to wonder at their difpieafure at the 
pidurefque authors. Thefe convey ideas, and pun- 
gent ones too ; this is what the Dunciad hate : Li- 
bertinifm, Libertinifm is what they roar and write 
for. And, when they deny that the moral effedts 
are as above, we will confront them with the dying 
fpeeches of fome of their friends. The whole mob 
of the kingdom are on their fide, and of their party, 
but their manners witnefs for us. 

It would be but juft in our libellers, to let us 
know their flandard of good writing, of tafte and 
criticifm -, but their pallates have, I doubt, been fo 
long vitiated with a claflical lobloly, that they are 
not equal to the talk. They feem to be total 
ftrangers to the true ftandard of common fenfe -, yet 
fet up for illuminatees forfooth, and aflume the 
ofRce of diredlors ; but have nought but a few fan- 
taftical rules to judge when a man writes truth or 
fallhood. This is the only rcafon that can be af- 
iigned, why, fince the critical and monthly libellers 
are agreed in the fame general plan of oppofition 
to Chriftianity and its Author (but neither knowing 
what they are about) differ fo much in their accounts 
of the lame book, the one giving us a fulfome 
panegyric upon that which the others treat with 
contempt. There are, indeed, certain authors, 
whofe reputations their malice durft not nibble, 
whom they have treated with common refpei^t, 
while they have ufed others with the higheft con- 
tempt, for maintaining with learning and candour 
the fame caufe. The Pidurefques they hate: 
Why ? Becaufe their own babble muft fall before 


( 54 ) 
them, as Dagon before the ark. The man who is 
out of temper with the pidurefqiie manner of 
writing, fhcws himfelf a ftranger to the elements of 
language: for, if language be founded upon nature, 
as it really is, it mult be pifturefque, or have no 
meaning, or at leaft a very uncertain meaning. 
The man that fees not this, let his ftock of claffical 
learning be what it will, is fitter for a Pimp than a 
Reviewer. All words, in all languages, in their 
true original etymology, are thus pidlurefque, or 
convey only the uncertain vague ideas which cuftom 
has flampt upon them. The Latin and Greek 
languages afford us fhameful proofs of this. In- 
deed, fuch prattling fools who have only learnt 
languages by rote, and prate as parrots do, as they 
have been taught by the cuftomary ufe of words, 
may objed here, while every man of real learning 
will cenfure them for their ignorance. But there 
feems to be another reafon why our malignants 
are fo angry with the pidlurefques, which is, 
becaufe the Mofaic fcriptures were wrote in that 

Thus having briefly fketched their hopeful plan, 
from the Devil to the gibbet, there we'll leave it ; 
perfeiflly convinced, that the well-being of religion 
and fociety can no more confift with their principles, 
than the drops of water in a mop can be concentrated 
by twirling it over parched fallow land. 

But prithee. Snap, what have I done to thy cubs, 
that nothing I can write can pleafe them ? At firft 
they fplit my periods, perverted my fenfe, and 
abufed me perfonally : befides that, fome of them 
fcnt me a forged citation, to appear before his 
Grace the late A — B[* of Canterbury, to give 
an account of a pamphlet which they did not like, 
and of the reafun of my addrefling it to him. 
When I had obtained the fureft information that it 


was an abfolute forgery, and tho' It was In my power 
to have difcovered the authors of it, 1 roU'd it and 
them in the contempt they deferved, and dropt it. 
Why have thepubHc been amufed four times by the 
Dunciad, with an account of my trade inftead of my 
books ? The pubhc did not want to know that ; and 
their underftanding their own TRADES, as Re- 
viewers, no better than to meddle with mine, was 
a fpecimen of their malice inftead of their judg- 
ment. Becaufe I had fallen foul of a performance 
of one of their mopfical favourites, which they had 
puflr'd off as filled with life, fpirit, learning, and 
truth ; and becaufe I could find nothing there but 
ignorance, impudence, dulnefs, and fcurrility, they 
link me with a fcientific coble'r, with the author of 
the fixth letter to the people of England, whom I 
know not, and call me a fcribbling Hebrew taylor. 
It was, I own, unpardonable to knock one of their 
coxcombs on the head ; it fticks in their chops, they 
drivel at it -, but fpeak not out ; nor fo much as 
gnaw the margin of that pamphlet j they grin at it, 
and treat it as monkeys do a fwitch, or as hounds do 
hot pottage, look, and fmell, and lick, leer at the 
whip, and fneak off. How is this ? Have I cut 
their coxcombs too clofe ? No, for they are callous. 
Are they afraid of their brains ? They need not, 
for they are fecured by thick walls. Are they 
afraid of the fearing iron ? No, furely, for they 
have ufed that themlelves, and are paft: feeling, ex- 
cept when their pride is touch'd : that fets their 
briftles all aftrut : but, if I cannot pluck them up 
by the roots, I will fheer them clofe next time, 
and with their empty heads and bare backs, fend 
them to fpin fifhing-nets for their ftipends. 

And here I will take my leave of them for the 

prefent, for I will not tread upon a worm, it is 

enough that he lies at my feet. One thing I 

I advife, 

( 56) 

advife, for a farewell, and flight it not bccaufe it 
comes from me. 

Fas ejiy ^c, ab bofie doceri. 

It is a madnefs to cenfure what you don't under- 
ftand ; for, you leave your reafon behind you when 
you go beyond your apprehenfion. This, I think, 
is good counfel j and, if I thought it would be 
more acceptable from Oxford than from me, I 
would give it— in their language, 

Tempt not yourjiars beyond their light.