« PreviousContinue »
is, in fact, only just begun. Protestants, therefore, must up and be doing. They must be vigilant, energetic, united.
Let it not be supposed that the blessings of Providence are to be secured without any labour on our part to preserve them.
The Church which will not contend earnestly for the purity of God's Truth committed to its keeping, will have its candlestick removed. (Rev. ii. 3.) The nation which will not maintain its freedom, will soon sink into slavery; and all the invaluable blessings which we enjoy, will soon become mere things that have been.
We wish not to be thought alarmists. Our desire is not to create dangers-but to arouse our fellowcountrymen to a sense of those dangers which do exist; and against which it is their duty to provide. What will be-what should be their course at the next election?
In this happy country, the people to a great extent make their own laws. Let them, then, return those men as their representatives in Parliament, who will legislate on Protestant principles.
The Clergy, especially-who are bound by solemn vows to "be ready, with all faithful diligence, to banish and drive away all erroneous and strange doctrines, contrary to God's Word,"-will, we trust, remember that, at a time like this, when Rome, ever restless, crafty, and encroaching, is redoubling her efforts to regain her power, and the carelessness and indifference of worldly politicians is giving every advantage and encouragement to that apostate Church-it behoves them, as they love the souls committed to their charge-as they value the Protestant Constitution and the best interests of their country-and, above all, as they honour God and his truth-to be faithful and diligent in the discharge of their high and solemn duties.
What, then, is to be done?
Ought there not to be, on the part of all Protestants, the deepest humiliation before God?-with an earnest and humble confession of our past
sins, which have given occasion to the enemies of God and his Truth to prevail so far against us? And should not this be followed by humble and contrite returning to God, with increasing love and zeal for His blessed Gospel, and a stedfast determination to 66 contend earnestly for the faith once delivered to the saints?"(Jude 3.)
The natural result of such a course will be, earnest and persevering endeavours, especially on the part of all faithful ministers of Christ, to proclaim and make known "the glorious Gospel of the blessed God," in opposition to the soul-destroying and Goddishonouring dogmas of the Church of Rome;-that so the people of this Country may clearly know, and well understand, Why they are Protestants, What they should contend for, and What they protest against.
It is only by vigorous and persevering efforts to inform the minds of all classes in the Country on these subjects, and by calling forth, in every direction, the energetic expression of Protestant feeling, that any reasonable hope can be entertained of preventing further concessions to Popery, and the Establishment of the Romish Church in Ireland and elsewhere.
In order to this, the following plans are suggested
1. The preaching of regular series of sermons on the Articles of the Church of England, more especially those which denounce the errors of Popery, and set forth the doctrines of the Gospel in opposition to them: such as Articles VI., IX.-XXII., XXIV. XXXII. and XXXVII,
2. The wide circulation of tracts and books, which contain clear statements of the errors of Popery, and authentic information on the subject. The Protestant Association has already published several Tracts and Volumes, which may be had for Schools and Parochial Libraries, &c., at a reduced price.
3. The formation of Protestant Associations in every part of the Country, and the frequent holding of Public Meetings, in which the true
character, designs, and operations of the Church of Rome may be faithfully exposed.
It is earnestly requested that you will by an early reply signify your intention of becoming a Member of the Society, the subscription to which is Ten Shillings per annum; or, at
least, your willingness to correspond with the Committee, and to promote the objects at which the Association aims.
Signed on behalf of the Committee,
At a public Meeting of the friends of Christian Union, held at Edinburgh, on the 3rd of June, 1845, Sir Andrew Agnew, Bart., in the chair, the following resolutions were unanimously adopted:
THAT this Meeting express their high Christian regard for their dear brother Dr. Merle D'Aubigné.
That they desire to express their most cordial sympathy in his efforts to sustain the cause of pure Christianity to extend the knowledge of Scriptural truth—and by his admirable expositions of the efficacy of the doctrine of Justification by Faith, to carry forward the work of Protestant Reformation on the Continent.
And, that this Meeting, while deprecating all attempts to bring about an agreement among Christians by the compromise or concession of principles conscientiously held by any, desire most cordially to reciprocate those sentiments of Christian Union of which he is the honoured advocate, and in which, at this eventful crisis, all members of the Reformed Churches can join with brotherly love, to strengthen
each other's hands, to resist error in every form, and promote the cause of their Redeemer's kingdom throughout the world.
Resolved-That this Meeting, with thankfulness to Almighty God, have witnessed the Christian union of sentiment which characterized the proceedings of the great Anti-Maynooth Meeting recently convened in London, where more than thirteen hundred Deputies, from nearly all the Churches of the Reformation in the three kingdoms, under the guidance of their judicious Chairman, Sir Culling Eardly Smith, Baronet,-Determined to exercise all legitimate influences in their several localities, not only for maintaining the Protestantism of the British Constitution, but also for promoting the cause of Christian Union so auspiciously commenced :
And this Meeting desiring to cooperate in so holy a cause, request their Chairman and the Committee to communicate this expression of their Christian sympathy to Sir Culling Eardly Smith, Bt., and the other leading Members of the sister Churches in England.
ANDREW AGNEW, Chairman.
JOHN FOSTER, PRINTER, KIRKBY LONSDALE.