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ness, and be thou pleased to give to the other repentance, to the acknowledgment of the truth. To this end do thou, O Lord, mollify all exasperated minds ; take off all animofities and prejudices, contempt and heart-burnings; and, by uniting their hearts, prepare for the reconciling their opinions. And that nothing may intercept the clear fight of thy truth, Lord let all private and secular designs be totally laid aside, that gain may no longer be the measure of our godliness, but that the one great and common concernment of truth and peace may be unanimously and vigorously pursued. And do thou so guide and prosper all pacific endeavours, that those happy primitive days may, at length, revert, wherein vice was the only heresy.
JEREMY TAYLOR, D. D. BISHOP OF DOWN AND CONNOR.-DIED 1667*. 'EW men consider, that so long as men have
such variety of principles, such several conftitutions, educations, tempers, and distempers, hopes, interests, and weaknesses, degrees of light,
* The following high encomium was paid to the character of Bishop Taylor, by Dr. Rust, who preached his funeral sermon : “ He had the good-humour of a gentleman, the " eloquence of an orator, the fancy of a poet, the acuteness “ of a schoolman, the profoundness of a philosopher, the “ wisdom of a chancellor, the sagacity of a prophet, the and degrees of understanding, it is impossible all should be of one mind. And what is impoflible to be done is not necessary to be done. And, therefore, although variety of opinions was impossible to be cured, and they who attempted it did like him who claps his shoulder to the ground to stop an earthquake; yet the inconveniences arising from it might possibly be cured; not by uniting their beliefs, that was to be despaired of; but by curing that which caused these mischiefs and accidental inconveniences of their disagreeings. Since, then, if men are quiet and charitable, in some disagreeings, then and there the inconvenience ceases; if they were so in all others, where lawfully they might (and they may in most) Christendom would be no longer rent in pieces, but would be re-instated in a new Pentecost. And, although the Spirit of God did reft upon us, in divided tongues, yet so long as those tongues were of fire not to kindle strife, but to warm our affections, and inflame our charities, we should find that this variety of opinions, in several persons,
“ reason of an angel, and the piety of a saint. He had de“ votion enough for a cloister, learning enough for an “ university, and wit enough for a college of virtuofi;' and “ had his parts and endowments been parcelled out among “ his clergy that he left behind him, it would, perhaps, “ have made one of the best dioceses in the world." This panegyric on Bishop Taylor may be somewhat exaggerated; but I believe, among the Divines of the last age, he had few equals, and no fuperiors.
would be looked upon as an argument only of diversity of operations, while the spirit is the same; and that another man believes not so well as I, is only an argument, that I have a better and clearer illumination than-he; that I have a better gift than he, received a special grace and favour, and excel him in this; and am, perhaps, excelled by him in many more. And, if we all impartially endeavour to find a truth, fince this endeavour, and search only is in our power, that we shall find it to be a gift, and an aslistance extrinsical, I can see no reason why this pious endeavour to find out truth shall not be of more force to unite. us in the bonds of charity, than the misery in missing it shall be to disunite us. So that, since an union of persuasion is impossible to be attained, if we would attempt the cure, by such remedies as are: apt to enkindle and increase charity, I am confident we might see a blessed peace would be the reward and crown of such endeavours.
But men are now a days, and indeed always have been, since the expiration of the first blessed ages of Christianity, so in love with their own fancies and opinions, as to think faith, and all Christendom, is concerned in their support and maintenance; and whoever is not so fond, and does not dandle them, like themfelves, it grows up to a quarrel ; which, because it is in Divinity, is made a quarrel in religion, and God is entitled to it; and then, if you are once thought an enemy to God; it is our duty to persecute you even to death ; we do God good service in it. When, if we should examine the matter rightly, the question either is not revealed, or not so clearly, but that wife and honest men may be of different minds, or else it is not of the foundation of faith, but a remote superstructure, or else of mere speculation; or, perhaps, when all coines to all, it is a false opinion, or a matter of human interest, that we have so zealously contended for; for to one of these heads most of the disputes of Christendom inay be reduced; so that I believe the present fractions (for the most) are from the same cause which St. Paul obferved in the Corinthian schism, when there are divisions among you, are ye not carnal ? It is not the differing opinions that is the cause of the present ruptures, but want of charity; it is not the variety of understandings, but the disunion of wills and affections ; it is not the several principles, but the several ends that cause our miseries ; our opinions commence, and are upheld, according as our turns are served, and our interests are preserved; and there is no cure for us but piety and charity. A holy life will make our belief holy, if we consult not humanity, and its imperfections, in the choice of our religion; but search for truth without designs, fave only of acquiring heaven, and then be as careful to pre: serve charity as we were to get a point of faith; I am much persuaded we thall find out more
truths, by this means; or, however (which is the main of all) we shall be secured, though we miss thein, and then we are well enough.
I end with a story, which I find in the Jews books: 6 When Abraham sat at his tent door, “ according to his custom, waiting to entertain
strangers, he espied an old man, stooping and “ leaning on his staff, weary with age and travail, " coming towards him, who was an hundred
years of age. He received him kindly, washed "s his feet, provided supper, caused him to sit “ down; but observing that the old man eat, and
prayed not, nor begged for a blessing on his
meat, he asked himn why he did not worship “ the God of heaven. The old man told him, " that he worshipped the fire only, and acknow
ledged no other God. At which answer “ Abraham `grew so zealously angry, that he “ thrust the old man out of his tent, and expofed “ him to all the evils of the night, and an un“ guarded condition. When the old man was
gone, God called to Abraham, and asked him “ where the stranger was? He replied, I thrust “ him away, because he did not worship thee. “ God answered him, I have suffered hiin these “ hundred years, although he dishonoured me; 65 and couldst not thou endure hiin one night, “ when he gave thee no trouble? Upon this, “ faith the story, Abraham fetched him back
again, and gave him hospitable entertainment,