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to teach what they believe true to others.
3. Whoever desires that truth should take place, should be wellpleas'd to have all men of learning, penetration, and integrity, publish their opinions. For such men are the most capable of finding out truth themselves, and of setting it in a due light before others. Would not every man of understanding and honesty be glad to know the most intimate thoughts of such men, as HOOKER, Hales, ChillinGWORTH, MEDE, Wilkins, WhitchcoT,More,CudWORTH, SPENCER, TILLOTSON, BACON, FALKLAND, SELDEN, MilTON, MARSHAM, BOYLE, TEMPLE, and Locke, (for example) and be sorry, that such like men ever have been, or are, under any restraints from speaking their minds; and wish, that they might speak their minds on all important questions in philosophy and theology, like Mr. WhisTON; who has not many superiors
in learning and penetration, and seems superior himself to most in integrity? Is it not ridiculous, that men of the greatest integrity and capacity should be under any discouragement from making inquiries after truth, and under any difficulties for publishing writings in consequence of their inquiries; and that none can safely speak in matters of speculation, but the blind followers of the blind, or the interested followers of the interested ?
4. Not to permit and encourage ingenious, learned, and honest men to profess and defend their opinions, when different from ours, is to distrust the truth of our own opinions, and to fear the light. Such conduct must, in a country of sense and learning, increase the number of unbelievers, already so greatly complain'd of; who when they fee matters of opinion not allow'd to be profess’d and impartially debated, justly think they have foul play, and therefore
reject reject many things as false and illgrounded, which otherwise they might receive as truths. And it must do so especially, when it is consider'd, what a numerous clergy we have ; who are all bred scholars, and have literature chiefly in their hands, and are many of them men of great parts, learning, and leisure; who understand, and practise all the arts of perswasion, and have the common people (I mean the common people as to understanding) devoted to them; who can never want able meni among themselves (to say nothing of their followers and dependants), either in the way of banter or seriousness, poetry or prose, dialogue or discourse, declamation or argument,to answer and expose whatever can be alledgʻd in behalf of falshood by men,who cannot pretend to match them, without truth on their side ; and who have the sole privilege of speaking frequently to the people
from the (c) pulpit, where, as Mr.
fay? Papers relating to Mr. Whifton's cause, &c. p. 170. (cc) Sat. i. V. 149.
say? How can we be better inform'd than by using the best means of in formation ; which consists in consulting reason and (cripture, and calling in the aid of others ? Of what use is it to consult reason and fcripture at all, as any means of information, if we are not, upon conviction, to follow their dictates ? And what principles of religion are men to profess (which all lay must be) openly, and act upon, but those, whereof they are convincd ?
.6. Clergymen, by being devoted to the service of truth, and to preach the gospel of truth, are under a particular obligation to inquire into the mind of God, and to impart the discoveries they make to the world, and, as successors of the apostles, to go and teach all nations. And they cannot act more effectually against the design of their own profession, than either by being filent as to the discoveries they make, or by preaching and writing contrary to their own light;