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and the enthusiastic and defective; and to put a bridle as it were upon those who were not likely to become profitable labourers in the harvest of the Gospel. And as this office was rendered necessary on account of the principle, that "no ordination or human appointment could make a minister of the Gospel," so, the same principle continuing among the Quakers, the office has been continued to the present day.

It devolves upon the elders again, as a second branch of their duty, to meet the ministers of the church at stated seasons, generally once in three months, and to spend some time with them in religious retirement. It is supposed that opportunities may be afforded here of encouraging and strengthening young ministers, of comforting the old, and of giving religious advice and assistance in various ways; and it must be supposed, at any rate, that religious men cannot meet in religious conference without some edification to each other. At these meetings queries are proposed relative to the conduct. both of ministers and elders, which they answer in writing to the quarterly meetings of ministers and elders to which they belong.

long. Of the ministers and elders thus assembled it may be observed, that it is their duty to confine themselves wholly to the exhortation of one another for good. They can make no laws, like the antient synods and other convocations of the clergy, nor dictate any article of faith. Neither can they meddle with the government of the church. The Quakers allow neither ministers nor elders, by virtue of their office, to interfere with their discipline. Every proposition of this sort must be determined upon by the yearly meeting, or by the body at large.

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Worship-consists of prayer and preaching-neither of these effectual but by the Spirit-hence no liturgy or form of words, or studied sermons in the Quaker-church-Singular manner of delivering sermons-Tone of the voice usually censured-this may arise from difference between nature and art-Objected, that there is little variety of subject in these sermons-variety not so necessary to Quakers-Other objections-RepliesObservations of Francis Lambert of Avignon.

As no person, in the opinion of the Quakers, can be a true minister of the Gospel unless he feel himself called or appointed by the Spirit of God, so there can be no true or effectual worship, except it come through the aid of the same Spirit.

The public worship of God is usually made to consist of prayer and of preaching. Prayer is a solemn address of the soul to God. It is a solemn confession of some weakness,

weakness, or thanksgiving for some benefit, or petition for some favour. But the Quakers consider such an address as deprived of life and power, except it be spiritually conceived. "For the Spirit helpeth our infirmities. For we know not what we should pray for as we ought. But the Spirit itself maketh intercession for us with groanings, which cannot be uttered *.”

Preaching, on the other hand, is an address of the man to men, that their attention may be turned towards God, and their minds be prepared for the secret and heavenly touches of his Spirit. But this preaching, again, cannot be effectually performed, except the Spirit of God accompany it. Thus St. Paul, in speaking of himself, says, “ And my Spirit and my preaching was not with enticing words of man's wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and with power, that your faith should not stand in the wisdom of men, but in the power of God †." So the Quakers believe, that no words, however excellent, which men may deliver now, will avail, or will produce that faith which

*Rom. viii. 26.

+1 Cor. ii. 4.

is to stand, except they be accompanied by that power which shall demonstrate them to be of God.

From hence it appears to be the opinion of the Quakers, that the whole worship of God, whether it consist of prayer or of preaching, must be spiritual. Jesus Christ has also, they say, left this declaration upon record, that "God is a Spirit, and they that worship him must worship him in Spirit and in truth *." By worshipping him in truth they mean, that men are to worship him only when they feel a right disposition to do it, and in such a manner as they judge, from their own internal feelings, to be the manner which the Spirit of God then signifies.

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For these reasons, when the Quakers enter into their meetings, they use no liturgy or form of prayer. Such a form would be made up of the words of man's wisdom. Neither do they deliver any sermons that have been previously conceived or written down. Neither do they begin their service immediately after they are seated. But

* John iv. 24.


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