be infected with the leaven of a blind zeal, instead of the broad philanthropy of Christ
Is there no better alternative?
Yes. To adopt the principle of William Penn
; to allow freedom of opinion; and while we permit the Evangelical party to hold their
favorite notions, so long as they consent to conform to our system of public worship, to confess that we have acted harshly to the Hicksites, and open our arms to all who are sincere in their faith, and orderly in their conduct.’
As the adherents of Elias Hicks
at that time represented freedom of conscience, of course Isaac T. Hopper
belonged to that party, and advocated it with characteristic zeal.
In fact, he seems to have been the Napoleon
of the battle.
It was not in his nature intentionally to misrepresent any man; and even when the controversy was raging most furiously, I believe there never was a time when he would not willingly have acknowledged a mistake the moment he perceived it. But his temperament was such, that wherever he deemed a principle of truth, justice, or freedom was at stake, he could never quit an adversary till he had demolished him completely, and convinced
him that he was demolished; though he often felt great personal kindness toward the individual thus prostrated, and was always willing to render him any friendly service.
He used to say that his resistance in this controversy was principally