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ready been remarked in them, touch, and that oftentimes by very affecting representations, upon fome of the most interesting topics of human duty, and of human meditation; upon the principles, by which the decifions of the laft day will be regulated *; upon the fuperior, or rather the fupreme, importance of religion; upon penitence, by the most preffing calls, and the most encouraging invitations; upon felf-denial§, watchfulness |, placability ¶, confidence in God **, the value of fpiritual, that is, of mental worship, the neceffity of moral obedience, and the directing of that obedience to the spirit and principle of the law, instead of feeking for evasions in a technical conftruction of its terms.

* Mat, xxv. 31 et feq.

Mark viii. 35. Mat. vi. 31-33. Luke xii. 16. 21.

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If we extend our argument to other parts of the New Teftament, we may offer, as amongst the beft and fhorteft rules of life, or, which is the fame thing, defcriptions of virtue, that have ever been delivered, the following paffages:

Pure religion, and undefiled, before God and the Father, is this; to vifit the fatherless and widows in their affliction, and to keep himself unspotted from the world*.*

"Now the end of the commandment is, charity, out of a pure heart, and a good confcience, and faith unfeigned."

"For the grace of God that bringeth falvation, hath appeared to all men, teaching us, that, denying ungodlinefs and worldly lufts, we should live foberly, righteously, and godly, in this prefent world.”

Enumerations of virtues and vices, and
James i. 27. † 1 Tim. i. 5. ‡ Tit. ii. 11, 12,


thofe fufficiently accurate, and unqueftion ably juft, are given by St. Paul to his converts in three feveral epiftles*.

The relative duties of hufbands and wives, of parents and children, of mafters and fervants, of Chriftian teachers and their flocks, of governors and their fubjects, are fet forth by the fame writert, not indeed with the copioufnefs, the detail, or the diftin&tnefs, of a moralift, who fhould, in thefe days, fit down to write chapters upon the fubject, but with the leading rules and principles in each; and, above all, with truth, and with authority.

Laftly, the whole volume of the New Teftament is replete with piety; with, what were almost unknown to heathen moralifts, devotional virtues, the most profound veneration of the Deity, an habitual sense of his bounty and protection, a firm confidence in

Col. iii. 12. I Cor. xiii.

2 Cor. vi. 6, 7. Rom. xiii.

* Gal. v. 19.

† Eph. v. 33.

vi. 1. 5.

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the final refult of his councils and dispensations, a difpofition to refort, upon all occafions, to his mercy, for the fupply of hu man wants, for affiftance in danger, for relief from pain, for the pardon of fin,



The candour of the writers of the New Teftament.

I MAKE this candour to confist, in their putting down many paffages, and noticing many circumstances, which no writer whatever was likely to have forged; and which no writer would have chofen to appear in his book, who had been careful to prefent the story in the most unexceptionable form, or who had thought himself at liberty to carve and mould the particulars of that ftory, according to his choice, or according to his judgement of the effect.

A ftrong and well-known example of the fairness of the evangelifts, offers itself in their account of Chrift's refurrection, namely, in their unanimously stating, that, after he was risen, he appeared to his difciples alone. I do not mean, that they have used G 3

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