A Sermon Delivered by JOSEPH JOHN GURNEY, At Devonshire Meetinghouse, March, 1833.
Addresses Delivered by Messrs. Allen, Bates, Gurney, Tuke, Wheeler; Mrs. Braithwaite, Grubb, Jones, and Ministers, of the Society of Friends. London: Hamilton, Adams, & Co., 1834, pages 71-95.

This is The Quaker Homiletics Online Anthology, Part 3: The 19th Century.

"As in Adam all died, so in Christ shall all be made alive," and I think this memorable portion of holy writ affords one out of numerous examples of the extent and variety of divine truth, often couched by the pen of inspiration in a very few words; and I know of nothing that would more tend to the welfare and peace of every individual present, than to be brought to a full apprehension, and a vital experience of the truth of these words, "as in Adam all died, so in Christ shall all be made alive;" and I have often longed for myself, and for my fellow professors of the ever blessed truth, and especially for the members of this Society, that we might all be brought to a deeper sense of the death which pervades our species through the sin of Adam. I believe it must be admitted that the apostle has some allusion here to natural things, for there is reason to believe, that had it not been for sin, even natural death would not have come into the world; and we die--we moulder in the dust--we are committed to the silent grave as the children of a sinful parent, and as those who have sinned ourselves, and are in every point of view worthy of death. I wish we were all sensible how worthy we are of death: I wish we might remember, that even when the mourners go about the streets, when we lose the joy of our hearts, and the delight of our eyes, when our own strength withers, and we descend to the chambers of darkness, that these are tokens, these are proofs that we are a fallen, sinful race. But, my beloved friends, there is a death of a deeper kind, there is a darkness more black, more impenetrable, than that of the grave; there is a destruction infinitely more formidable, than that of the body; there is the death of that which in one sense can never die; there is the separation of the soul of man from the source and spring of life; and we are dead, my brethren, we are the children of wrath by nature, even as others; we are separated from our God, not by the sin of Adam verily, not by the imputation of the fault of another, but by the awful consequence of the sin of our first parent, traced as it is in the depravity and corruption of our nature, and finding its way into our own selves; now friends, we do not want the sin of another to aggravate our condemnation; there is not one of us in this large assembly who is not condemned for his own sins, by the sentence of the eternal, immutable law of God, and I wish we were more alive to the fact, for many of us conduct ourselves very differently from condemned criminals, dependant on the pure mercy of our sovereign Lord God. And what is mercy, my dear brethren? I believe there are those who have very meagre apprehensions of the meaning of this word; they mistake it for kindness and love in a general point of view; but mercy is the love which acquits the criminal; mercy is the love which obliterates all our transgressions, through the blood of the everlasting covenant; mercy is the love which delivers us from the bitter pains of eternal death, and bestows upon us in great loving kindness the glorious gift of everlasting life; my beloved friends, where is our humiliation before the Lord? where are our mouths in the dust? where is our contrition? where is the breaking to pieces of the rock work of our hearts? "The prophet that hath a dream, let him tell his dream, and he that hath my word, let him speak my word faithfully;" God forbid that the poor servant should not speak it faithfully; "what is the chaff to the wheat," my brethren, "is not my word," saith the Lord, "as a fire, and as a hammer that breaketh the rock in pieces?" and I do believe that we stand in peculiar need of coming under the immediate influence of that word from heaven which is quick and powerful, sharper than any two-edged sword, and piercing asunder, for there are many among us who are taking up a false rest, moving on the surface of things, well satisfied with the system to which they are attached, and in which they have been educated; and all the while, while they are making a pretty good profession, they are slumbering the slumbers of death; they are sleeping the sleep of the grave. "I passed by the vineyard of the sluggard, and by the field of him which hath no understanding, and it was all grown over with weeds, and nettles covered the face thereof, and the stone wall thereof was broken down:" now friends, we may think that we are surrounding ourselves with a stone wall very well cemented, and good is the masonry thereof, and the mortar with which it is cemented has a fair appearance; but all the while it totters, it breaks, it is falling, and the enemy passes and re-passes, and robs us of the precious love of truth, the spring of our hope, our peace, our virtue, our immortality. Alas, for such a condition!--"I know thy works that thou hast a name to live, but art dead; be watchful and strengthen the things which are ready to die, lest I come and take thy candlestick out of its place, except thou repent." I have been baptized, according to my measure, into a sense of the sin of this people; I have also been brought, in some sense, under a sense of my own sins, and I have cause to be humbled and broken before the Lord; and, if I am emboldened to stand before you this day, my brethren, it is in no other character than that of a brand plucked out of the fire; but friends, we are a sinful people; we do not indeed, want the sin of Adam to aggravate our transgression; the corrupt root which we derive from Adam, has been fruitful enough, without any imputed sin; all the covetousness of the Lord's professing Church, all the devotion of their hearts to the things of this world, all our ungodly attempts to serve God and Mammon too. O how unsightly is the combination, how abominable in the sight of Him who is of purer eyes than to behold evil; and then, friends, there is sinfulness in the very silence of this people; Satan mocks us, my dear brethren, he turns our very light into darkness, and if the light which is in thee be darkness, how great is that darkness; and if, under our good profession of quietness and silence, we are subsiding into the depth of our own corruption, what will become of us; if we are departing in spirit from the fountain of living waters; if our stillness is the stillness of death, and if our silence is the silence of the grave, what will become of us my beloved friends? I believe there never was a time, when true godly silence was more precious to the Lord's exercised children than it is now; may we cleave to it; may we remember our testimony to it; may it never be broken in our public assemblies, except under the immediate influence of the Lord's anointing: but, friends, what think you of the silence of Lazarus when he was dead, and buried, and putrid? was there a good savour there? What were the words of Martha? Homely words, but I dare not withhold them--"Lord, by this time he stinketh, for he hath been dead four days:" and there are those, even in this assembly, who have long been very sick, and their sickness hath increased upon them, and they may now be compared to the dead; to the buried; to those who are in the process of their last decay; and they afford a practical exemplification of the awful truth, that in Adam all die. But, my beloved young friends, ye ingenuous ones, ye amiable ones, who have been favoured with a guarded and religious education, ye who have some fleeting desires in your minds after holiness and heaven, do not deceive yourselves I beseech you; while you continue in your unregenerate nature, your are dead in trespasses and sins; you are with all your amiability, and all your steadiness, the children of wrath even as others. I dare not flatter you, I love you too dearly; I long, I pray for your salvation; I want you to be humbled, broken to pieces, brought into the valley of tears, made sensible of your own sinfulness, of your death, of your loss, of your liability to ruin by nature. O friends, what can be more miserable than the standard of the world on the subject of morality? the world has no notion of tru~ virtue; ye proud and airy speculators, whoever your are, who set out on your system-making on a wrong foundation, and pretend that man is virtuous by nature, what does your virtue come to ? What is the virtue of the philosophy of this world, is there any thing of God in it? Nay, there is nothing of God in it; we are an ungodly race my dear brethren, we are departed from God; his love, his fear are (sic) not in us; by what do we judge of the value of an action, my dear-brethren ? It is allowed on all hands that the motive makes the action good; and what is your motive ye moralists of the world--you are so besotted by a false philosophy, what is the spring of your actions? Pride, alas for the motive! And what ought to be the spring of your actions? The love of God. And never will you be brought home to the right motives, or to true virtue, until you come home to God by him, "who is the way, the truth, and the life;" "for no man cometh unto the Father but by me," said Jesus; but let no one suppose that we would depreciate a guarded education, a moral or steady life. O no ye beloved young friends, we can rejoice in your moral, and amiable, and steady conversation; we believe that you have often been visited by the day spring from on high; we believe that the Lord is at work in your hearts, but you are not regenerate; you cannot be born again until you make the unconditional surrender; it is no time for any of you to delay and trifle with eternal things, much less to play with edge tools; or to throw yourselves in the way of temptation; now is your time to become decided in your religious course; now is your time to give up all for Christ; now is your time to surrender without conditions, that the Lord may make of you what he pleases, that you may be born again of the Spirit, and live everlastingly; but alas, alas for those even among the younger classes who have followed the multitude to do evil. There are more than a few such I greatly fear, even in this goodly assembly, whom one might suppose to be all virtuous, but the Spirit doth testify that this is not true: there are those who have followed the devices and desires of their own hearts, until they have become the very slaves of Satan, and how have they fallen! O the deep instructiveness of their history; first they have given way in some very little things; they have grieved the unflattering witness for the truth in their own bosoms, respecting some of those things which the world calls matters of indifference, and thus a small aperture has been made in the wall round about them, and the enemy has made it by degrees larger and larger; first there was room for the little foxes just to pass through the aperture and spoil the tender grapes, and now there is room for the ravenous, and deadly, and noisome beasts of the forest to pass, and re-pass just as they please;" O tell it not in Gath, my brethren, and publish not our shame in the streets of Askelon," and yet we must be faithful; and we never can rise until we fall, for Christ our Saviour is set for the falling and the rising again of many in Israel, and a little hope arises with me that this will be a favoured day of self condemnation; we do not want to judge one another my dear brethren, we want to condemn every one himself, we want to come under that law of the Spirit of light in Christ Jesus which will first condemn us, then wound us, then slay us, and then bury us with Christ in baptism; and then raise us again and put a new life into us that we may arise and shine, both as individuals and as a people, in the strength and beauty of primitive Christianity. And my beloved friends, there are sins of mind, I was about to say of the intellect, which have done desperate mischief within our borders; we do not distinguish things aright, we misapply our powers, we are for ever prone under the influence of the corruption of our hearts to call good evil and evil good; to put sweet for bitter, and bitter for sweet; let not my beloved young friends suppose for a moment, that some of us who are exercised for their welfare would discourage them in their intellectual pursuits; O no, we delight in their forming a refined and virtuous taste; we glory in their zeal for the acquirement of useful knowledge; we knew the plain principle of our holy religion that it is our bounden duty to make the very best of all our powers for the glory of God and for the welfare of man, and woe unto those who under the false pretence of their inability are taking their talent and wrapping it in a napkin and burying it in the earth; they may call their master a hard master, and they go the way to work to find him hard in the day of judgment, for the Lord is a just God, and the eternal rule of right will never bend in the smallest degree, in the hand of omnipotent holiness; but, my beloved friends, are there not those who think that they can obtain divine knowledge by the mere application of their natural powers; are there not those who are prone to make themselves wise above that which is written, and to build systems of their own contrivance like those Babel builders in days of old, hoping to scale the heavens by the strength of their own wisdom, and it will end in their eternal confusion; yes, my dear friends, the intellect and reason of man have their proper province, even in religion; let us never depreciate their value, no, my beloved friends, it is our duty to bring these things to bear, and for the highest of purposes: would to God that the patient, deliberate, pious, and careful examination of the holy scriptures did more abound among us, that we might be more like those noble Bereans, who searched the scriptures, that they might know whether these things are so, yea or nay; and let me tell my dear young friends, that whether we plead for the great fundamental doctrines of the gospel, or for those Christian testimonies which, as a people, we believe to rest on that foundation; we are bold, as our forefathers were before us, to make our honest appeal to the inspired records, and we are willing that our sentiments and our practice should stand or fall by this test:--but, beloved friends, when we bring our natural powers into their right office, in daily reading, and meditating on holy writ; are we to forget, shall we for a moment forget, that the very ground, and spring, and root, of the authority of scripture is immediately from revelation:--shall we for a moment forget, that it is the lion of the tribe of Judah, who alone holds the key of David, and opens and no man shutteth, and shutteth and no man openeth. Ah, my friends, let us endeavour to gather our minds into deep dependance on the power of a risen Saviour, and on the guidance of his Holy Spirit; that the Spirit of truth himself may take of the things of Christ, and open them to our understandings, and apply them to our hearts. There is the animal faculty and there is the rational faculty-in man, and woe unto those, for there are such in this assembly, in whom the animal faculty rebels even against the plainest dictates of common reason--and above the rational faculty there is the light of heaven, and, woe unto those in whom the rational faculty is not subject to the light of heaven; light and life, my dear brethren, going hand in hand, and being inseparable companions. In Him, in Jesus, in our Saviour was light, and the light was the life of men; and, my dear friends, I have feared that there are some among us, who would not only discard what may be called the outside of our system, but that which belongs to the very root and ground of our religions profession--immediate revelation: and I am bold to assert, that mankind would for ever have groped in the darkness of the chambers of death, had it not been for immediate revelation; and I do rejoice in the glorious truth plainly declared in scripture, respecting our Lord Jesus Christ. That was the true light which lighteth every man that cometh into the world, and you may all come to it my dear friends, you need not die in your sins, you need not be buried like Lazarus, in the dust of the earth, and lay there until you are putrid; you need not do it friends; in Christ is your life, and the Redeemer of mankind is your salvation, he is waiting to be gracious to you. O think, my beloved brethren, how it was with the Apostle Paul, before he was an Apostle, when he breathed out threatenings and slaughter--his very breath was like fire--he breathed out slaughter. There was a state of mind; and he went to crush the Lord's children, and to trample them under his feet; to eat them up as a man doth bread--and he was arrested in his course; and who was it, who stopt him in his foul and desperate career? The Crucified one, my clear brethren; the risen, the glorified Immanuel: it was he whose light shined round about him--so dazzling, so perfect, that his natural vision was blind; and who said in those gentle, yet piercing accents of reproof, "Saul, Saul, why persecutest thou me?" And, my dear friends, I long that we may come under the influence of that light from heaven, which will blind our natural vision; that we may be contented to abide as Saul did, in a state of darkness for many days, in reverence, and holy patience, until the same Jesus shall wash us from our sins in his blood, and proclaim our deliverance. What, friends, shall we, a poor, corrupt, sinful people; shall we think lightly of the gospel of Christ; shall we clip it; shall we narrow it up by any system of our own; shall we circumscribe God's glorious plan of redemption?--let us die first, let us rather give up all we have. O no, friends, let us have the gospel in its length, and breadth, and height, and depth, in all its fulness, as that light from heaven which will manifest to us our own darkness, and our own sinfulness, will play around us with the lovely countenance of the Holy One of Israel; then we shall see the perfect fitness of the Saviour to the sinner; and "as in Adam all die, so in Christ shall all be made alive." Now, my dear friends, there are some points so very plain in reference to this subject, that one would scarcely think the mention of them was needful, or any thing like insisting upon them, as if we did not all receive them; but I dare not; I will not withhold the mention of them. How strange it is that under the guidance of a spiritual religion, there should, after all, be some among us who are endeavouring to get to heaven by their own works; what a singular fatuity is this my dear brethren, what strange misapprehension, when we know that we are all sinners and condemned by the law to death everlasting, when we know that had we fulfilled the whole law even then there would be no surplus of merit, even then we should have had no claim in ourselves to the gift of a glorious eternity; no friends, the Apostle Paul well spake when he had said "The wages of sin is death but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord, and therefore my beloved friends, there is but one way for any of us whereby we can experience the redemption, forgiveness of sins, and that is through the atoning blood of our Lord Jesus Christ, who is the propitiation for our sins, and not for ours only but for the sins of the whole world, now the word propitiation is synonymous in the common acceptation of it with the word atonement, and those who are accustomed to the reading of the original text, are well aware that what is called the doctrine of the atonement is plainly stated in scripture in terms that cannot be mistaken, under the word propitiation; yes friends, he came from heaven in his infinite mercy and humbled him self, and became obedient unto death, and bore the burden of all bur sins and by this most important of all facts God has displayed for our instruction his own immutable holiness in the first place, and next his boundless mercy, to a poor, lost, and sinful world, and I do beseech you, my dear friends, for ever to discard all dependance on your own works as the ground of the favour of God, even your best works, even those which you may humbly hope you perform under the influence of his good spirit; do not mistake my dear friends, the superstructure for the foundation. "Other foundation can no man lay than that is laid, which is Christ Jesus and him crucified, and although it may be foolishness to the Greek, and a stumbling block to the Jew, it is plain and immutable truth; and it may truly be said to stand to reason in the best sense of the words, and nothing shall ever shake it; and is it not wonderful that in all ages of the church, those who are brought to a deep sense of their own sinfulness, do embrace the doctrine of a crucified Redeemer, as a poor hungry man takes his natural food; the veil is rent for you, my beloved friends, God hath consecrated for you a new and living way, through the veil, that is to say through the flesh of Jesus Christ, which was broken for you on the cross, and I beseech you not to attempt to enter into the pastures of life by any other way; believe in the Lord Jesus, humble yourselves at his feet, wash your garments by faith in his blood; it is the ground of your acceptance, the foundation of your hope, the rock on which your peace is built for ever; and my beloved friends, let it not be said amongst us, that this is only the outward part of religion; I have often trembled when I have heard some make a distinction between what they call the outward and inward parts of religion, as if we were to sit in judgment on the plan of salvation, and on God's method of saving a fallen race, and as if we were to set one part up above another; no friends, there is a holy harmony in the truth, and we must accept it in all simplicity and reverence, in humiliation, in godly fear, and in humble faith, and I trust you Will all come to be filled with that spirit which filled the apostle Paul, for after he had been visited by that light from heaven, and had been turned from the error of his ways. For whose glory did he live? Did he not delight to dwell on Christ crucified? Did he not delight to unfold the riches of redeeming love? Was not the blood of the covenant precious to him beyond all words and all conceptions? Did he not say, "The life which I now live in the flesh, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me?" Was he not deeply sensible of the practical bearing of the doctrine, and of its power upon the heart, when he said, "If the blood of bulls and of goats, and the ashes of an heifer sprinkling the unclean sanctified to the purifying of the flesh, how much more shall the blood of Jesus, who through the eternal spirit, offered himself without spot to God, purge your conscience? " There is an inward work for you, friends, something very different from mere externals in religion, verily; purge your conscience from dead works to serve the living God; the blood of Jesus must be sprinkled my brethren on the heart by faith. I think friends, by making this distinction between what we call the outward and the inward, we only encourage a tendency common to corrupt humanity, to view these matters as matters of theory and speculation, rather than of practice. O may we henceforth be preserved as a religious society, from any deep or dangerous errors. O remember how it was with our honourable elder, George Fox, when he was brought under sore baptismal conflicts, when he was laid low as a young man before the Lord; would to God that many of our young men could be brought into the same condition, they could be if they would: would that we might see that day, would that we might be delivered from our superficial walk, would that we might get down into the deeps, would that we might be baptized, would that the Lord's hand might be laid with power on our vanity, our folly, and our pride. O friends, I believe that were we better acquainted with the experience of our forefathers in the truth, that we should have a greater value for those testimonies which they were led to bear in the sight of the whole world to the perfect and true spirituality of the gospel, and how was it with this young man after he had been baptized with the baptism of suffering in so remarkable a manner? O he became instructed in the lessons of heavenly wisdom; and I believe there was no lesson so near his heart at that time, as the lesson of the exceeding preciousness of the atoning blood of Jesus, and when the priest of the parish enquired of him what was the meaning of our Lord's suffering and agony in the garden of Gethsemane, and of his words on the cross, "My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me," he plainly answered and said, "that the Saviour of man was then bearing on himself the weight of the sins of all mankind; now let no man pretend to say after this, that this honoured Elder was not deeply sensible of the practical bearing of the Christian doctrine of the atonement. Now friends it is on the heart that these things are intended to bear, it is on the heart that the blood of Christ must be sprinkled; we must be filled with the Saviour's love my brethren; we love him because he first loved us, Herein is love, not that we loved God but that he loved us, and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins; thanks be unto God for his unspeakable gift. Well ye ingenuous young persons and all of you my beloved friends, will ye not be broken, will ye not be melted under the tidings of a Saviour's love, ye who know very well how to be grateful to your friends when they treat you well, will ye turn your backs on that best of friends, will you meet the greatest of all gifts, the most astonishing of all mercies with cold hearted, impenitent ingratitude ? O no I hope better things of you my brethren, and things which accompany salvation; I believe the glorious gospel in its simplicity, and in its purity will not be proclaimed among us in vain; I call upon you for the surrender of your hearts, my beloved brethren and sisters, to that Lord who in his infinite compassion bought you with his blood; and you will soon understand that the sacrifice of our Lord Jesus Christ without the gates of Jerusalem, as we are accustomed to speak, is no matter of cold speculation, no matter of religious theory alone, but that it is of all things conceivable, the most practical and the most influential on the heart of poor, fallen, wandering, and benighted man, and how are you to prove your love, some of you who have Christ in your mouths, some of you who delight yourselves in the tidings of the gospel, some of you who have spoken and heard much in later times of Christ crucified; I am glad that you know him, I delight in believing that you love him, I bless the day when the gospel light shone on your benighted spirits; I hail the radiance which has shone athwart your darkness from the bright beams of the Sun of Righteousness; I believe he has arisen upon many of you with healing in his wings, but how are you to show your love, how are you to develop your gratitude, what is to be the fruit? O friends here comes the part from which human nature shrinks, I know who could say in days of old, "I am crucified with Christ;" are you crucified with Christ? There is the vital question; are you made conformable to his death, do you follow him to Calvary's mount, are you willing that your pride and your vanity, and your systems, should be slain on his cross, will you be buried with him in-baptism, my beloved friends, will you go down with him into the depths of the grave, will you lay there in reverent and awful patience until Christ shall make you alive, will you in the silence of an flesh refrain from stirring up your beloved until he please? O the depth my beloved friends of true Christian experience, and some of you beloved friends who have thrown off the restraints of your youth, let a plain man ask you a plain question? Did you do it for the love of Christ? Was it the love of a Saviour that constrained you to choose that course? Was it the delusion of the world? Was it the unmortified pride of your own hearts ? Was it your conformity to the god of this world, who would lead you first one little gentle step in -the downward path and then another--and then another--and then another--and then another, till you go down, and down, till nothing can arrest your progress; O I trust there are many of you who will be arrested in your progress towards the world; I think my dear friends we are in danger of shaking hands with the world, I wish God may be pleased to deliver us from this vengeance; I do not desire to speak hardly of any one; there are varieties in our circumstances, there are varieties in our conditions, great varieties, and God looketh not at the outward appearance, God searcheth the hearts, but I am bold to express my conviction that as a religious society, we shall never gain strength by turning our back on our Christian testimony, on the contrary, I long that all these things may be done in the light of truth, not in dry morality, not in hypocritical profession, but under the influence of the love of Christ, my dear brethren, that we may arise and shine, and Zion put on her strength, even within our borders, and I believe that Zion is putting on her strength in a very general point of -view; I believe pure truth is diffusing itself in the world, and O that we may not be left in the rear, but I trust the time is coming when even within our borders, Zion will put on her strength, and come to be arrayed in her beautiful garments, and I wish I could convey to my younger brethren and sisters the deep settled conviction of my spirit that though we may be rather dry, and rather flat, and a poor scattered people in the estimation o£ some, they never will gain any thing by seeking out another way for themselves; no friends let us have the glorious gospel in our own borders, let us cherish it, let us give it room to circulate, let it have its free course, let nothing stop the tide of truth; truth shall triumph, truth shall reign over all amongst us, away with our prejudices, away with our false systems set up by man for himself, away with our own inventions, and let the truth, the very truth, the whole truth, as it is in Jesus; circulate among us and reign over all. And my beloved friends, one thing before I venture to take my seat; you know that immediate revelation is the very root and ground of the scriptures themselves; it is the preparatory work also of the holy Spirit which can alone bring us to Christ; there is no other way, all the rest is mere folly and delusion, all other ways, however they may stand in the sight of human wisdom, will be broken and must end in confusion. But friends, when we are brought by the Father to Christ, does the Spirit cease from his office? Does he suspend his holy teaching? Does he then fail to guide the Lord's children? Is there an end of his work? Is this Christianity? Is this the scriptures as you read them? I read not so the scriptures; I read there that it is the very compact of the new covenant, and the peculiar privilege of all true believers, that the law of their God is written on their hearts, and put into their inward parts, and that they need not say every man to his brother, and every man to his neighbour, Know the Lord. O my dear friends, my soul is exercised on your account; I am tired, says one of you younger brethren, I am wearied of these prolonged silences, I go from meeting to meeting, I repeat my attendance three times a week, I scarcely hear a word, I want to have a little more teaching, I long for a little more ministry; and I hope the day is coming friends, if you will have patience, when there will be more of a truly anointed ministry amongst us, and I shall hail the day; it was so in the old days of our society, and I believe it will be so again, but don't be impatient, my dear young friends, don't forget the peculiar privilege of true Christians, "All thy children shall be taught of the Lord, and great shall be the peace of thy children," and what was the promise of the gospel. Now mark, my brethren, there was the promise of the old covenant, and there was the promise of the new covenant; the promise of the old covenant was Christ, and the promise of the new covenant, is the Spirit, it is specifically declared to be the Father's promise in the new covenant, and Christ hath promised that he will send the Comforter to us, even the Spirit of truth, who shall bring to our remembrance whatsoever he hath said unto us, and guide us into all truth. Do you believe it friends?--yea, or nay. It was the profession of our ancestors, and God forbid that it should ever cease from being our profession; we shall never prosper if we hunt after words; we shall never prosper if we place our dependance on any thing less perfect than the Lord's own anointing. I deeply feel the importance of the subject, I am not one of those, you will believe me, my dear friends, who think lightly of the gospel labours of those who are not of our religious denomination. I believe that they have often flowed from a right zeal, and are often blessed with fruit to the giver of all grace; but of one thing, I am well persuaded, that our security and prosperity as a religious body is intimately and inseparably connected with our maintaining our own place in the universal church of Christ; not in the form, not in the systems, not in the prejudices of man, not in the bitterness and narrowness, and, I may say, arrant folly of mere sectarian views, but in the light of immortal truth, in the beauty and strength of primitive Christianity, in the good old spirituality of the gospel of Christ, my brethren, in the old path, the unchanging path. O we ought to be deeply humbled before our God in reverent gratitude, that he hath been pleased to raise us up for the purpose, that we may be faithful in bearing our testimony to the eternal rule of right. My brethren, I do believe that this is the testimony which we have to bear as a religious society, namely, that the pure truth without addition, and without diminution, should have its own free unrestricted course for the welfare of man and for the glory of God. We discharge from our views, or ought to do, all mere considerations of what the world calls expediency; and, O my beloved friends, I hope you will bear with a poor unworthy brother, as I feel bound to say in the first place, that I never did feel my spirit more entirely bowed to the whole of the glorious gospel of our Saviour, and the doctrine of a Crucified Immanuel, than I do at this moment;--and, on the other hand, I never have been more constrained in my spirit to confess that I am a Quaker--I would not lightly use the word, but I do believe it is my bounden duty, to maintain our good old profession inviolate. I wish I could do it better; I know my own weakness; I desire to humble myself in your presence; but I do beseech you, as you value your own immortal souls, and your standing as a religious body, make free room for the gospel to circulate--let us have it without clipping, without constraint, without restriction in its fulness, in its unsearchable riches; let us have the glorious ocean of light and love overflowing the ocean of death and of darkness: but let us not be beguiled by any of the temptations of the enemy, into a forsaking of our own standing, of our own duty, of our own belief; let us be steadfast--immoveable; always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that your labour shall not be in vain in the Lord.