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ORIGIN, PROGRESS,

AND

EXISTING CIRCUMSTANCES,

OF THE

LONDON SOCIETY

FOR

PROMOTING CHRISTIANITY AMONGST THE JEWS.

AN HISTORICAL INQUIRY.

BY THE

REV. H. H. NORRIS, A.M.

PERPETUAL CURate of St. JOHN'S CHAPEL, HACKNEY,
PREBENDARY OF LLANDAff, and

CHAPLAIN TO THE EARL OF SHAFTESBURY.

LONDON:

SOLD BY J. MAWMAN, LUDGATE-HILL, AND

W. WETTON, FLEET-STREET.

1825.

BODL

Printed by R. Gilbert, St. John's Square, London.

"The friends of Jewish Conversion have nothing to fear from discussion; their greatest enemies are indolent incredulity and supercilious indifference."-Preface to Jewish Expositor, Vol. IX. p. 2.

"Some gentlemen appear to have a sort of mania for benevolence about them. Until they find fresh means of stimulating people to do good, after the old channels have been filled up, they have no happiness nor comfort of their lives."-Speech of B. Shaw, Esq. M.P. Treasurer to London Society, London Tavern, April 7, 1813. Jewish Repository, Vol. I. p. 221.

"Men would be fanatics, if, when there are fields which reward the culture, they should sow the seed on rocks, and expect a harvest." Speech of Rev. J. Cunningham. Norwich Association Anniversary, 1822, in aid of the Society for promoting Christianity among the Jews, p. 3.

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INTRODUCTION.

THE utmost that we can do towards the conversion of the Jews to Christianity, is unquestionably amongst the most obvious of those duties which we owe to aliens from our own "household of faith: and so many and so affecting are the incentives to it, which the inspired Writers of both Testaments have put forth, that there is no Christian enterprise so capable of being made at once both diffusely and deeply interesting. It would have been an oversight, therefore, without a parallel in the annals of proselytism, if, at a "time" when "Britain" is panegyrized as the "distinguished seat of spiritual activity," these most prominent and attractive objects of religious zeal, had not excited strong emotions at their affecting state; nay, had not induced the organization of some plan for their restoration.

That there has been no such failure is well known to be the case; and had THE LONDON SOCIETY FOR PROMOTING CHRISTIANITY AMONGST THE JEWS prosecuted its experiment upon such a scale, and under such regulations, that nearer and more important interests sustained no injury from its operations, whatever doubts of its usefulness might have been entertained, it would have had an indisputable claim to forbearance, in virtue of the piety of its design.

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