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is too deep for the shallow classicality of modern Church

Vir sapit qui pauca loquitur (he is a wise man who prints nothing) is the beginning and the end of their scholarship. Let every philosopher within the Presbyterian Church of Scotland know now on what ground he stands-philosophy is the unpardonable sin against the infallibility of the Confession of Faith! A man may do many things in the Church of Scotland, and yet live comfortably, keeping on friendly terms both with tithes and theology,—he may drivel by the yard, dote by the hour, and be drunk by the day—he may nod and fall utterly asleep,-all this is perfectly correct, the peace of the Church is not disturbed by such doings; but let him only venture to thinkto read the face of nature and the page of the Bible with his own eyes, to use that reason freely which God freely gave, to philosophise after Greek or German masters, or that grand master which is God, speaking audibly in us and around us: in this case, there is nothing for him but to fall on his knees, and pray with the pensive fellow in the play, • Oh that I were a fool! I am ambitious for a motley coat! Truly, for a Churchman, in these latter days of bigotry rejuvenescent, motley's the only wear'--such miserable, motley, and fanciful piecework as creeds and catechisms are for the most part composed of!

“ For Mr. Wright's own sake, we are heartily glad that he has been cast out of the Kirk. We do not say whether we think him right or wrong in many of those beautiful and ingenious speculations with which he has interwoven so many works of great piety and popularity: but he had no business to speculate at all after he had signed the Confession; that is, according to the principles of the men with whom he has been associated; and in such company he never could have felt comfortable. He is now at large; the caged eagle may revisit Lochnagar; although there be sometimes more frost there than food, there is liberty, which, to noble souls, is life; and there is a God also who fed the prophets in olden times, and who will not desert them now. Silly women, heavily laden with sins, and lightly laden with sense, will eschew him jealously as a heretic, and one that hath a devil; but open-hearted men, and men that see with no patent spectacles, will receive him into their homes as a brother, and give him bread to nourish his body, and the Bible to nourish his soul, without reason asked from the General Assembly, or question answered by the Shorter Catechism. And so things will go on for a seasonothers paying the penalty of private judgment as bravely as Mr. Wright, while God shall permit, till bigotry have worked her perfect work; and then the Church of Scotland shall either be utterly annihilated (as to moral influence), or radically reformed."

The preceding paragraphs appeared in the Aberdeen Herald, May 27th. They contain strong expressions ; but not more strong than the case warrants. Tbey were written, we believe, by an individual who has himself experienced some of the tender mercies of Presbyterian inquisition; they express convictions which are growing ones even among members of the Church of Scotland, and which, assuredly, the sayings and doings of her Church Courts have impressed most vividly on the minds of all consistent dissentients from her pale.

The proceedings of the General Assembly, in the case of the Rev. Thomas Wright, of Borthwick, would be ridiculous were they not disgusting. He is no novice, propounding vain theories to excite the wonderment of the ignorant, or to bewilder the understandings of the thoughtful. He is no aspirant after theological notoriety, exciting the country to deeds of fanaticism, and accompanying his progress through the land by the groans and swoons and midnight howlings of deluded votaries. He is no rampant preacher, emulous of the coarseness and brutality of speech which disfigured and disgraced bygone times, dealing out damnation in the plenitude of his wrathfulness, and cursing his fellow-creatures in the name of the Lord. Had he been characterised by any of these qualities, he had been safe; no charge of heresy would have disturbed his mind: he might have brandished “the keys of the kingdom of heaven," opening or shutting its portals as he listed. But being of a calm and philosophic turn of mind, deeply imbued with a love of the loveliness of this glorious world, and of that Father who made the creation the mirror of his benignity; animated by the spirit of Christianity, and anxious that human nature should be lifted up from its actual sinful. ness, to the imitation and fellowship of its holy and unspotted Redeemer; feeling, too, within himself the symptoms of decay and illness, and that this world might not be long his dwelling-place,ấhe sketched the plan of a series of works, which he hoped, if enabled to fill up, might be instrumental in exciting his fellow - creatures thus practically to follow Christ, and make of earth a present heaven, by rendering it the abode of individual and personal righteousness, peace, and joy. With these sentiments and feelings, Mr. Wright has published the following works, which we give in the order in which he wishes them to be read:–« First, The Living Temple, as a guide to active and social duty; next, The Morning and Evening Sacrifice, for daily devotions; then, The Last Supper, for assisting those who are preparing to celebrate the most interesting solemnity of the Christian faith; and, lastly, The Farewell to Time, for the use of those who either have the near prospect of leaving this world, or who inay wish to be useful to persons in that situation.”

The object and intention of these publications, Mr. Wright states, in the preface to “The True Plan of a Living Temple:”—“ The entire series of treatises are thus intended to afford a view of all the duties incumbent on man, as a being who must busy himself amidst labours and cares that sometimes seem to him to have but little relation to his future and greater destiny; a being, however, who is fitted by his religious nature, not only for making all ordinary occupations a service done to God, and instrumental in promoting the advancement of his kingdom, but who, by means of the same religious endowment of his nature, is permitted to hold, amidst all the variety of his circumstances, devout intercourse with the Father of his spirit, his acts of devout communion being sometimes more common, and sometimes more solemn and extraordinary; and lastly, as a being who is destined to pass from all the loveliness and all the cares of this world, often, too, amidst circumstances of great humiliation and trial, to the more enduring interests of that far greater portion of the Divine kingdom which eternity is to unveil."


The last of these works was published ten years ago; the first, we understand, about twenty years since. Their sale, it is supposed, has been extensive: we hope the supposition may be true, as it would prove the growing intelligence of the people of this creed-worn country. The asserted popularity of these works, or their presumed author's unwillingness to sanction the Non-intrusion farce, at length led one of the wildest of that fraternity to move a charge of heresy in the General Assembly. At its recent meeting, that charge was finally decided on. Both the Moderates and Immoderates united in denouncing the author. Dr. Hill, the Professor of Divinity in Glasgow College, affirming, “that no one in the house could be more satisfied than himself, and those who sat around him, of the errors contained in those works;" but proposing a committee to confer with Mr. Wright, a means of bringing him to a conviction of his errors." This motion being rejected by 195 to 85, the Moderator called on the ex-Moderator, as is usual in such cases, to pray; which being done, he proceeded to pass this sentence:-“ The General Assembly hereby do, in the name and by the authority of the Lord Jesus Christ, the sole King and Head of this Church, depose Thomas Wright from the office of the holy ministry, prohibiting and discharging him from exercising the same, or any part thereof, under the pain of the highest censures of the Church; they appoint intimation of this sentence to be made from the pulpits of the parishes within the presbytery of Dalkeith-then declare the parish of Borthwick vacant, and appoint the Moderator to intimate the vacancy of the said church and parish to the patron, that it may be in due time supplied.”

By this act of deposition, the General Assembly have again sealed their condemnation in the minds of every consistent Protestant—of every faithful disciple of Christ Jesus. What intolerable assumption and presumption do not the words of the Moderator exhibit! “ By the authority of the Lord Jesus Christ”! When, and where, and to whom was that authority given? To John Knox, to Dr. Chalmers, to the heresy-hunter, Mr. Candlish, or to the combined elders and preachers as a body? Talk of Popery, truly!--the asserted infallibility of the Rom. ish Church is not one whit more preposterous than the "authority” of this self-styled “only true Kirk of God”! Right of the Christian people to choose their ministers, forsooth! what is this compared with the right of individual thought? Abomination of patronage truly!—what is that compared to the abomination of punishing an enlightened and virtuous man for striving to induce bis fellow-Christians to believe that “he who doeth righteousness is righteous”? Against this abomination not one man in the General Assembly protested; in vindication of the hallowed privilege of free thought, there was not one found therein to uplift his testimony! The facts are only additional proofs of the utter worthlessness of Church Courts—the tyrannous and unchrįstian influence of Church Establishments.

The following lines, occasioned by the deposition of Mr. Wright, excellently illustrate this violation of Christian privilege and Protestant principle. If they do not exhibit the purest poetry, they possess at any rate both rhyme and reason:

“ Truth's in a well,” the sage declares,

• Imbedded deep beneath the ground;
No vulgar skill may seek it there;

By Science only is it found.”
“ Truth's on the surface,” others say;

“ And yet, the gem we seldom find;
We stumble o'er it every day,

For Prejudice is ever blind.”

“ Truth sits aloft, enthroned within

The precincts of imperial Rome,
Encircled with a triple crown:”
So says

the monk; so echo some.

“ Truth's in the Word of God himself,

If it be read without a bias;
If no presumptuous Popish priest

Enforce conclusions on the pious.”
So the Protestant; and adds,

“ Think for yourselves; for ’tis absurd
That erring men should fix for you

The sense of the unerring Word.”


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