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and unexpected attack. From this confideration perhaps it may be inferred, that the weapons of an adversary fo incautiously aimed, might have been allowed to spend their force, and fall harmlefs to the ground. It may no doubt be thought needlefs wafte both of time and labour, to employ them in the refutation of arguments which, like all thofe that have ever been produced against Episcopacy in general, have been already fo often refuted; or even to take so much pains in defending our own Epifcopacy in particular, from an attack, which has nothing but its novelty, and perhaps the character of its author, to fupport it. With respect to the former, we have already faid all that is neceffary to fhew, how little strength there is in it: In regard to the latter, we could wish to fay nothing; becaufe we are well aware how much weight will be thought due to it.
Far be it from us to fay any thing, that could be fuppofed to detract from the perfonal worth, and purity of morals, which diftinguished the character of Dr. Campbell. We know him to have been in general, as his biographer juftly defcribes him- a "man of a mild difpofition, and even temper, and "who was not much fubject to paflion." We recollect with pleasure the opinion delivered by him in favour of a repeal of the penal laws, which, in times of civil commotion, had been paffed against the Scotch Epifcopalians, as well as against those of the Roman catholic perfuafion. And as far as we were
concerned in the relief which was obtained from the feverity of these ftatutes, all due acknowledgement was made, for the friendly part which Dr. Campbell had acted in recommending the meafure, as reasonable in itself, and what, he thought, would be generally agreeable to the eftablished church of Scotland. To exprefs our gratitude on that occafion to him, and to every one elfe who had any hand in procuring for us the toleration which we now happily enjoy, was both our bounden duty, and our earnest defire; and we cannot charge ourfelves with any neglect of what was fo juftly incumbent on us. Yet our fpiritual character we must regard as of infinitely greater confequence, than any temporal indulgence which we can poffibly meet with: And as it was Dr. Campbell's avowed opinion, that "true
religion never flourished fo much, nor fpread fo "rapidly as when, inftead of perfecuting, it was
perfecuted, and inftead of obtaining fupport from "human fanctions, it had all the terrors of the ma"giftrate, and the laws armed against it," we have fome reafon to fufpect, that the removal of these terrors was confidered as no great fupport to our caufe, while room was left to beat it down from another quarter, and a proof of the invalidity of our clerical orders was thought to be a feverer blow than any effect of fines and imprisonments. Relieved as
See his "Addrefs to the people of Scotland, on the alarms which had been raifed by the bill in favour of the Roman Catholics,"
we have been from the latter by the clemency of government, we muft ftill feel the weight of the former, if not repelled by the force of thofe arguments, which the caufe we have to maintain fo plentifully affords: And fhould thefe be found to fail in producing the defigned effect on every unprejudiced mind, it must be owing to the weakness with which they are urged, and not to any want of ftrength in the arguments themfelves. One thing we wish to be conftantly remembered; that this dormant controverfy has not been revived on our part from any other motive than what has arifen from abfolute neceffity: And whatever has been faid in the course of our reafoning against fome of the pofitions laid down by Dr. Campbell. has been brought forward entirely in our own defence, and to affert our right to that firm ground, on which the belief of Epifcopacy as a divine inftitution has hitherto refted with inviolable fecurity.
Had our Profeffor's Theological Lectures been confined to the chair from which they were delivered, and reached no farther than the circle of his pupils, we fhould not have been obliged to take any notice even of that part of them which was directly intended to oppofe the principles and pretenfions of what he calls the "Scotch Epifcopal party:" because, as an established Lecturer, he had a right to inftruct his ftudents as he thought proper, in the peculiar tenets of his own and their profeffion. But when these inftructions were committed to the prefs,
and published to the world, for the evident purpose of impreffing on the public mind, not only a mean and unfavourable idea of the eftablished form of church government in the other part of the kingdom, but a thorough contempt of what ftill remains of the ancient establishment of this country, we could not allow ourfelves to be wholly filent on a fubject, with which our beft and deareft interefts are fo intimately connected, nor fuffer the Epifcopal Church of Scotland to appear as without a friend in the day of her humiliation, complaining as it were, in the words of the prophet, "that there was none
to take her by the hand, of all the fons that she "had brought up."-If it fhall be faid, that the appearance we have now made in her defence would not have been attempted, had the perfon himself been alive, out of whofe hands we have endeavoured to rescue her credit and character, it may be sufficient to answer, that if he had intended the attack to be made in fuch an open and public manner, he would have conducted it after a different form, and fo as to have exhibited a more fatisfying evidence of the truth of what has been faid in his favour, "that he was uncommonly liberal to those who "differed from him in religious opinions." If indeed he was fo liberal to the infidel Hume, as "to expunge or foften every expreffion that either was "fevere, or was only fuppofed to be offenfive,"t
See the Account of bis Life and Writings, prefixed to his Lectures, p. 16.
in his controverfy with that fceptical philofopher, we might hope, that he would have been no lefs fo to a fociety, or even party," as he calls them, profefling to be Chriftians, and avowing a fincere and uniform belief in all the great truths of divine revelation.* But if we must not prefume to call in quef
• We have already taken some distant notice of the favourable opinion which Dr. Campbell entertained of the fentiments profeffed by one of the moft infidious and inveterate enemies of Chriftianity, and fhall now produce a more direct proof of it, in the following letter written by our Profeffor to Mr. Strahan the printer, and dated-June 25, 1776.
"I have lately read over one of your last winter's publications with ve ry great pleasure, and, I hope, fome inftruction. My expectations were "indeed high, when I began it; but I affure you, the entertainment I re"ceived, greatly exceeded them. What made me fall to it with the great
er avidity was, that it had in part a pretty clofe connection with a fub"ject I had occafion to treat fometimes in my theological Lectures, to wit, "the rife and progrefs of the hierarchy: And you will believe, that I was not the lefs pleafed to discover, in an hiftorian of fo much learning and "penetration, fo great a coincidence with my own fentiments, in relation to "fome obfcure points in the Chriftian antiquities. I suppose, I need not
now inform you, that the book I mean is Gibbon's History of the Fall of “the Roman Empire, which in respect of the style and manner, as well as "the matter, is a most masterly performance."- See Mifcellaneous Worki of Edward Gibbon, Efq. &c. published in 2 vol. quarto, by John Lord Sheffield, 1796. In this letter, we cannot but obferve the most unqualified approbation given to a work, which, even from what was then published of it, juftified too well the remark that was afterwards made on the whole, that "the author often makes where he cannot readily find, an occafion to "infult our religion; which he hates fo cordially, that he might seem to "revenge fome perfonal injury." Yet a coincidence in fentiment, with respect to "fome obfcure points in the Chriftian antiquities," was fufficient to make our theological Lecturer applaud, in the moft flattering terms, this avowed bater of Christianity. It was enough to fecure every encomium which Dr. Campbell could beftow, that this impious fcoffer at the worship and worshippers of Chrift held the fame opinions as thofe which