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In the years of 1772-73, etc., when my mind was as solemnly impressed with eternal realities, as to turn me from the power of Satan unto the living God; whether from the Bible I read, the preaching I heard, the teachings of the Holy Spirit, or some other cause, I did as firmly believe the following articles, as I believed that Jesus Christ was the Saviour of sinners.]
1. That all men were guilty before God, and that God would be just and clear, if he damned them all.
2. That Christ did, before the foundation of the world, predestinate a certain number of the human family for his bride, to bring to grace and glory.
3. That Christ died for sinners, and for his elect sheep only.
4. That those for whom he did not die, had no cause to complain, as the law under which they were placed was altogether reasonable.
5. That Christ would always call his elect to him while on earth, before they died.
6. That those whom he predestinated, redeemed and called, he would keep by his power, and bring them safe to glory.
7. That there would be a general resurrection, both of the just and the unjust.
8. That , following the resurrection, judgment would commence, when the righteous sheep would be placed on the right hand of Christ, and admitted into life eternal; and the wicked on the left hand, doomed to everlasting fire.
In the belief of those articles, and what was collateral therewith, I began my ministerial career in 1774 with but little thought how many and weighty the consequences of these premises were. But, not, after the experiment of fifty-seven years, and after going over the ground thousands of times, with all the research and candor in my power, I dare not pull up stakes and make a new start. Many uncertainties arise in my mind, many questions spring up that I cannot answer; but, every other system that I explore has greater difficulties, and worse conclusions.
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