Wesleyan-Methodist Magazine, 3rd ser. 3 (1824), 799–806.
Christianity on its Own Basis, and the True Cause of Infidelity: A Sermon; Preached at the Methodist Chapel, Bridge-Street. Bolton Le-Moors: By the Rev. William France [2/2]
Rev. William France
Infidelity, Natural Theology, Reasoning, Christianity, Biblical Authority, Materialism, Geology, Astronomy, Plurality of Worlds
Argues that the true cause of infidelity lies in the heart, not in 'the want of evidence for the truth of Divine Revelation, or in the difficulties and apparent inconsistencies of its doctrines' (799). Applies this observation to pagan philosophers and to 'those in the present age who prefer the name of Philosopher to that of Christian' (800). Quotes one modern infidel whose creed is: 'There is no God but matter; no intelligence equal to that of men; and no man to be compared with myself, for penetration and wisdom' (801). Enquires when infidels will 'cease to impose upon themselves' and 'refute the arguments which are adduced in support of Christianity, in any one of the respectable defences of it which have been published to the world, instead of ransacking the bowels of the earth, with our modern Geologists, to find in the disposition of its strata contradictions to the Mosaic account of its formation, or soaring with our Astronomers into the region of the stars, to discover proofs, in a plurality of worlds and the immensity of God's works, against the Scripture doctrine of redemption by the incarnation and death of the Son of God' (804).
© Science in the Nineteenth-Century Periodical Project, Universities of Leeds and Sheffield, 2005-07
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