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· Calvinists, in eagerness of malice, had dis • persed their calumnies through the three kingdoms. A truly excellent person her
self, in her mistaken zeal, had represented • him as A Papist unmasked, an Heretic, an * Apostate. A clergyman of the first repu<tation informs me, à Poem on his Apostacy * is just coming out. Letters have been sent
to every serious Churchman and Dissenter * through the land, together with the Gospel
Magazine. Great are the shoutings, And
non that he lieth, let him rise up no more! • This is all the cry. His dearest friends * and children are staggered, and s know what to think You, in your corner,
cannot conceive the mischief that has been • done and is still doing. But your letters, • in the hand of Providence, may answer the 'good ends you proposed by writing them. « You have not been too severe to dear Mr.
Shirley, moderate Calvinists themselves being judges; but very kind and friendly ito set a good mistaken man right, and pro• bably to preserve him from the like rashness as long as he lives. Be not troubled therefore, but cast your care upon the Lord.'
“ My other friend says, ' Considering what • harm the Circular Letter has done, and what
an useless satisfaction Mr. Shirley has given by his vague acknowledgment, it is no more than just and equitable, that your • letters should be published.'
Now, Sir, as I never saw that acknow
ledgment, nor the softening corrections made by Mr. Wesley in my Vindication; as I was not informed of some of the above-mentioned particulars when I was so eager to prevent the publication of my Jetters; and as I have reason to think, that, through the desire of an immediate peace, the festering wound was rather skinned over than probed to the bottom; all I can say about this publication is, what I wrote to our common friend, namely, that. I must look upon it as a neces
I am glad, Sir, you do not direct your letter to Mr. Olivers who was so busy in publishing my Vindication ; for, by a letter I have just received from Bristol, I am informed he did not hear how desirous I was to call it in, till he had actually given out before a whole congregation it would be sold. Besides, he would have pleaded with smartness, that he never approved of a patched-up peace, that he bore his testimony against it at the time it was made, and had a personal right to produce my arguments, since both parties refused to hear his at the Conference.
“ If your letter is friendly, Sir, and you print it in the same size with my Vindication, I shall gladly buy ten pounds' worth of the copies, and order them to be stitched with my Vindication, and given gratis to the purchasers of it; as well to do you justice, as to convince the world that we make a
loving war; and also to demonstrate how much I regard your respectable character, and honour your dear person. Mr. Wesley's heart is, I am persuaded, too full of brotherly love to deny me the pleasure of thus showing you how sincerely, “ I am, Rev. and Dear Sir, is, DIBUIRE.
“ Your obedient Servant, brist is “ JOHN FLETCHER
?" in:" MADELEY, Ilth September, 1771. mi blik I
SECOND CHECK TO ANTINOMIANISM.
HONOURED AND REVEREND SIR,
I cordially thank you for the greatest part of your Narrative. It confirms me in my hopes, that your projected opposition to Mr. Wesley's Minutes proceeded in general from zeal for the Redeemer's glory: And as such a zeal, though amazingly mistaken, had certainly something very commendable in it, I sincerely desire your Narrative may evidence your good meaning, as some think my Vindication does your mistake.
In my last private letter I observed, Rev. Sir, that your Narrative was kind, I would buy a number of copies, and give them gratis to the purchasers of my book, that they might see all you can possibly produce in your own defence, and do you all the justice your proper behaviour at the Conference deserves. But as it appears to me, there are some important mistakes in that performance, I neither dare recommend it absolutely to my friends, nor wish it in the religious world the full success you desire.
I do not complain of its severity; on the contrary, considering the sharpness of my fith letter, I gratefully acknowledge it is kinder than I had reason to expect, But permit me to tell you, Sir, I look for justice to the scriptural arguments I advance in defence of truth, before I look for kindness to my insigniticant person ; and could much sooner be satisfied with the former than with the latter alone. As I do not admire the fashionable method of advancing general charges without supporting them by particular proofs, I shall take the liberty of pointing out some mistakes in your Narrative,
and by that means endeavour to do justice to Mr. Wesley's Declaratious, your own Serinons, my Vindication, and above all, to the cause of Practical Religiou,
Waving the repetition of what I said in my last, tonching the publication of my Five Letters to you, I object first to your putting a wrong colour upon Mr. Wesley's Declaration. You insinuate, or assert, that he, and fifty-three of the preachers in Conference with him, give up the ductrine of “ Justification by works in the day of judgment."-" It appears," say you, “ from their subscribing the Declaration," uotwithstanding Mr. Oliver's remonstrances, “that they do not maintain a second justification by works."
Surely, Sir, you wrong them. They might have objected to some of Mr. Oliver's expressions, or been displeased with his readiness to enter the lists of dispute ; but certainly so many judicious and good men could never so betray the cause of practical religion, as tamely to renounce a truth of that importance. If they had, one step more would have carried them full into Dr. Crisp's Eternal Justification, which is the very centre of Antinomianism; and, without waiting for the return of the next Conference, I would bear my legal testimony against their Antinomian error. Mr. Wesley I reverence as the greatest minister I know, but would not follow him one step farther than he follows Christ. Were he really guilty of rejecting the evangelical doctrine of a second justification by works, with the plain : ness and honesty of a Suisse I would address him, as I beg you would permit me to address you.
1. Neither you, Rev. Sir, vor any divine in the world, have, I presume, a right to blot out of the sacred records those words of Jesus Christ, St. James, and St. Paul : "Blessed are they that do his coinmandments, that they may have right to the tree of life.-Not every one that says to me, Lord! Lord!, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven, but he that does the will of my Father.-Be ye therefore doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves.--For we are