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THE UNIVERSITY OF CAMBRIDGE.
REV. CHARLES SIMEON, M. A.
FELLOW OF KING'S COLLEGE.
PUBLISHED BY EASTBURN, KIRK, & co.
NO. 86, BROADWAY.
We write none other things unto you
than what you read or acknowledge....2 Cor. i. 13.
AS the testimony of one's own conscience is the strongest support under false accusations, so an appeal to the consciences of others is the most effectual means of refuting the charges that are brought against us. To this species of argument God himself condescended to have recourse, in order to convince his people, that the evils which they imputed to him, originated wholly in their own folly and wickedness : 660 inhabitants of Jerusalem and men of Judah, judge, I pray you, betwixt me and my vineyard. What could have been done more to my vineyard, that I bave not done in it? and grapes ?"*
wherefore, when I looked that it should bring forth grapes, brought it forth wild
“ Have I been a wil. derness unto Israel ? a land of darkness ? wherefore say my people, We are Lords, we will come no more unto thee ?”+ 6 Ye say,
The way of the Lord is not equal. Hear now, O house of Israel, Is not my way equal ? are not your ways unequal ?"! The inspired writers also not unfrequently vindicate themselves in a similar manner. St. Paul, for instance, had been represented by some at Corinth as fickle and inconstant, because he had not come to them at the time they had expected him. To clear himself from this imputation, he informs them, that he had met with insuperable obstacles in Asia, which had prevented him from prosecuting his intended journey; and that in the whole of his conduct towards them he had been actuated, not by temporizing motives and carnal policy, but by the most strict unblemished integrity. He declares, that he had “ the testimony of his own conscience"
* Isaiah v. 3, 4.
| Jer. ii. 5. 31.
Ezek. xviii. 25.
respecting this ;* and that he had a further testimony in their consciences also, respecting the truth of what he said ; that, in as. serting these things, “ he wrote no other things than what they read in his former epistle, and were constrained to acknowledge ; and he trusted they should acknowledge even to the end."!
The faithful Minister of Christ derives great advantage from being able to appeal to records, the authority of which is acknow. ledged by his hearers. By referring them to the holy Scriptures in proof of all that he advances, he establishes his word
the most unquestionable authority, and fixes conviction upon their minds. The ministers of the Church of England. have a yet further advantage, because, in addition to the Scriptures, they have other authorities to which they may refer in confirmation of the truths they utter. It is true, we are not to put any human compositions on a level with the inspired volume: the Scriptures
2 Cor. i. 12.