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 But to proceed with this “patronage paragraph.”  I had said, in my Letter, “I know well, that such an exclusive system is not the desire of you all.”  Now this “exclusive system” is the desire of Mr. Perowne, and he has put himself forward as its great champion.  He therefore concludes that, as I have described a class of persons whose views are directly opposed to his, I must have meant himself!  His argument is—Mr. A. says that some persons do not approve of this p. 32“exclusive system.”  I do approve of it.  Therefore he refers to me!  Q.E.D.  Whether such syllogisms come from Oxford or from Cambridge, I am unable to determine, as I know not at which of the Universities Mr. Perowne was educated, and as Dissenters are “excluded” from them both.  
In the course of this immortal paragraph, two things yet remain to be briefly noticed.  First, he charges me with uttering a direct falsehood, and says that he will not believe my statements unless they are “authenticated by at least two witnesses.”  I have already intimated that I shall not trouble myself to gain his assent to any statements I have made.  He had before him the speeches made at the public meeting; he had before him Mr. Geary’s pamphlet; in both of which the statements I have made are reiterated; and yet, though he had before him the testimony of these three or four witnesses, he says he will not believe, till he has “at least two witnesses.”  Let him disbelieve it then.  And, secondly, in his note to the paragraph, he charges some of the clergy with consenting to “unite with Dissenters in the Bible Society,” “on condition” that a Dissenter should pay their subscriptions.  I hope it is distinctly understood that, in these pages, I make no attack upon the clergy, and that I have to do with Mr. Perowne only; yet, though the clergy do not need me as their defender, I am bound to declare that, having associated with several of them in the Bible Society for nearly twenty years, I believe that they joined it from true conviction, and not from such a base and paltry “condition” as that which Mr. Perowne alleges.  He has, however, carefully abstained from mentioning names, and from advancing proofs, both of which p. 33ought to have accompanied such a disreputable accusation of his brethren.
The bishops, of whom he speaks in the next paragraph, were “immured in a prison” on a charge of high treason; and a bill, to exclude them from the House of Lords, passed both houses of parliament, and received the signature of “our martyred Charles.”  And, if it was ever “made unlawful for an Episcopalian to worship God according to the dictates of his own conscience,” Mr. Perowne ought to know that this was done by parliamentary authority, and that the church might even now visit every Dissenter with pains and penalties, for not worshipping within her walls, were she not mercifully prevented by the Act of Toleration.
One more paragraph yet remains.  I had said in my Letter, that “the essential doctrines and hallowed influences” of religion “ought to be far dearer to us all than any forms of ecclesiastical government.  For the kingdom of God is not meat and drink; but righteousness, and peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost.”  This, he intimates, is equivalent to saying that “forms of ecclesiastical government” are “matters of little moment.”  I did not say so.  I said that doctrines and influences ought to be “far dearer” to us than such forms.  Having, however, made me say that they are “matters of little moment,” he asks, why then do we separate from the church?  I ask in reply, why does the church impose them? and why does he write a pamphlet against those who conscientiously refuse to comply with them?  Let Mr. Perowne regenerate a child by baptism, and cross its forehead, if he pleases.  Let him kneel at the table, around which Christ and his disciples sat, if he pleases.  Let him call a Socinian p. 34his “dear brother,” ............
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