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the Rev. W. Turner , Jun. , MA., Lives of the eminent Unitarians, Nathniel Lardner (search)
ccasion was published, and contains a high and doubtless well-deserved eulogium on that gentleman's character and talents. After his decease, Mr. Lardner had a unanimous invitation to undertake the pastoral charge of the congregation; but his various engagements, added to his increasing deafness, induced him to decline any other ministerial duty than that which he had already assumed in the pulpit. This he continued to exercise for some years longer, in connexion with the celebrated Dr. George Benson. In 1743, our author published three Sermons on the argument in favour of Christianity derived from the present circumstances of the Jewish people. He shews, in a very distinct and satisfactory manner, the correspondence between the predictions of our Lord and the condition of that people since his time, especially since the destruction of their city and temple, and their consequent dispersion among all the nations of the earth; that it is agreeable also to many prophecies in the O
the Rev. W. Turner , Jun. , MA., Lives of the eminent Unitarians, George Benson (search)
s, but in the graces of a Christian life. George Benson was soon remarked for a seriousness of temse, was completed by Mr. Hallet. In 1731, Mr. Benson proposed to himself to carry on this importae and notes, appears from a letter of his to Mr. Benson, written in November 1734:—I received the fat forfeit by his later writings. In 1735, Mr. Benson published the History of the first planting ither an opponent or the public. In 1746, Mr. Benson received the degree of D. D. from the Univernters. It appears, from a letter written to Dr. Benson by Mr. Fordyce, that there had been a designthe same spirit, from the author's namesake, Dr. Benson, Bishop of Gloucester, is given by Dr. Amory hypotheses, some more, some less probable. Dr. Benson's mode of combining the accounts proceeds ono acknowledge the kindness and assistance of Dr. Benson, as in other ways, so likewise in the directay from the scene of his earthly labours. Dr. Benson was not a man of brilliant genius, but of so[18 more...]
the Rev. W. Turner , Jun. , MA., Lives of the eminent Unitarians, John Shute, (search)
h arose in pursuing the studies to which they were alike attached; and when, as was frequently the case, one or more such men as Hunt, or Lardner, or Chandler, or Benson, were among his visitors—men who would have been an ornament to any church, both for their learning and for the other graces which we desire to see united in diviGentile converts, but only to such as had previously been proselytes of the gate. We have already observed, that this distinction, on which Lord Barrington and Dr. Benson, with some other learned writers, lay so much stress, is, perhaps, not supported by sufficient evidence; and, in fact, as the abstinence recommends ed by the ap ingenious criticism, and many valuable suggestions, which other writers have enlarged on to advantage. His example and advice were evidently of great service to Benson and Lardner, and, probably, to others who contributed to the high reputation for theological attainments deservedly enjoyed by the English Presbyterians of the ea
the Rev. W. Turner , Jun. , MA., Lives of the eminent Unitarians, Samuel Chandler (search)
lic institutions, before public bodies and societies, and on other remarkable or extraordinary occasions. His published sermons, however, are distinguished for a strength and clearness of argument addressed to the thinking part of his audience, rather than for any peculiarly ornamental style or flowers of eloquence to captivate the multitude. They shew him, in common indeed with his other publications, to have been, in theological sentiment, an Arian of nearly the same school with Peirce, Benson, and other distinguished ministers of that day in the Presbyterian denomination. But he does not appear to have taken any public part in the Trinitarian controversy, which, in fact, was not brought very prominently forward during the greater part of his active life. The most remarkable of Chandler's controversial writings are his replies to some of the leading Freethinkers of his day, particularly Collins and Morgan. His publications in this controversy are numerous and important; shewing
the Rev. W. Turner , Jun. , MA., Lives of the eminent Unitarians, Caleb Fleming (search)
was soon afterwards induced to assume the exercise of the ministry among the English Presbyterians; almost the only religious community which did not impose on its ministers and members restrictions in his estimation unauthorized by scripture. After preaching occasionally for a short time in different places, he was ordained in 1738 as minister to the congregation at that time assembling in Bartholomew Close, London. Among the ministers concerned in his ordination were Hunt, Chandler, and Benson. Mr. Fleming gave no other confession of faith than this, that he believed the New Testament writings to contain a revelation worthy of God to give, and of man to receive, and that it should be his endeavour to recommend them to the people in the sense in which he should from time to time understand them. He did not submit to the imposition of hands, which he considered as an unwarrantable mimicry of the apostles, and liable to misconstruction. If it is supposed, as is still too frequentl
the Rev. W. Turner , Jun. , MA., Lives of the eminent Unitarians, John Taylor, (search)
preferments, and pleasures, proposed as temptations, to make me drop my present resolutions. I hope I am in some measure qualified for the work, though important. I have no learning to boast of, yet I trust I have so much as, by the assistance of God, and by diligent application, may capacitate me to be useful, among plain simple people especially. He received his theological education in an academy at Whitehaven, conducted by Dr. Dixon; from which school also issued Dr. Caleb Rotheram, Dr. Benson, and other eminent Presbyterian divines. His devotion to Hebrew literature began at a very early period of his life. Among his Mss. is a Hebrew grammar, compiled for his own use, and finished when he was only eighteen years of age. In the year 1715, having completed his academical studies, he entered upon the ministerial office at Kirkstead, in Lincolnshire, where he remained for eighteen years, notwithstanding that it seems to have been a situation of great poverty and obscurity, and
the Rev. W. Turner , Jun. , MA., Lives of the eminent Unitarians, Dissenting Academics. (search)
cated in any institution, and those the most distinguished for talents and character, agreed in adopting religious opinions of a certain class, it seems reasonable to conclude that this was the prevailing tendency of the instructions they received, influenced, perhaps unconsciously, by the private opinions of the instructor. Thus we find that Dr. Thomas Dixon, who in the year 1710, and for several years afterwards conducted an academy at Whitehaven, was the preceptor of Taylor of Norwich, Benson, Rotheram, Winder of Liverpool, and several others well known in the succeeding age as decided Arians, we seem authorized to infer that he had himself a leaning towards the same principles. Little is known (at least we have not been able to meet with any record) of his early history. In 1719 he quitted Whitehaven to settle at Bolton in Lancashire, where he remained till his death, in 1733. It is not known that any production of his found its way before the public. His son, Mr. Thomas Dix
the Rev. W. Turner , Jun. , MA., Lives of the eminent Unitarians, Caleb Rotheram, D. D. (search)
Caleb Rotheram, D. D. was born March 7, 1694, at the pleasant village of Great Salkeld, on the banks of the river Eden, in Cumberland, which, as we have seen, was also, a few years afterwards, the birthplace of Benson. He was instructed in classical learning by Mr. Anthony Ireland, at that time master of the free Grammar School at Blencowe, and pursued his academical studies, preparatory to the exercise of the Christian ministry, under the direction of Dr. Dixon, at Whitehaven. In the year 1716, he accepted an invitation from the Protestant dissenting congregation at Kendal, and became their stated pastor; a station in which he remained through life. Nothing is recorded of him till the year 1733; but we cannot doubt that, as he continued the useful but uniform and noiseless tenor of his way, in the diligent discharge of the duties of his office, he advanced in reputation as in years; for at this period, in compliance with the request of many of the most eminent among the Disse