Excerpt from Observations on the Political Conduct of the Protestant Dissenters: Including a Retrospective View of Their History, From the Time of Queen Elizabeth; In Five Letters to a Friend
When our venerable Reformers firf't began that important work of renovating the Englifh Church, and clearing it of the rubbifh and fuperfiition of Popery, every fiep they took was guided by the mof't profound wifdom and fagacity. Aware of the prejudices of the human mind, of the bias ariflng from education, and the force of cuf'tom, they pro ceeded gradually in the glorious work of Reforma tion, and were extremely anxious to preferve every thing of little importance in the old religion, While they Cxpunged from their creed every docftrine, and from their formula every ritual, that was oppofite or not conformable to the Holy Scriptures. With re fpeet to canonical habits and vefiments, and various ceremonies, fuch as bowing at the name of Jefus, making the fign of the crofs in baptifm, and the obfervance of feai'ts and fefiivals, they made fuch retrenchments and alterations only as were centi ally neceiiary. The moderation, the candour, and the wifdom, of thofe great and illuf'trious men, can not fufiiciently be admired.
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