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THREE CRANES, THAMES-SIREET.--Independent, Extinct.
That a blot of this nature should attach to the character of so worthy and respectable a person as Mr. Pike, could not but be recorded with lamentation. It is, therefore, with great satisfaction that the writer takes this opportunity of publicly contradicting a report of so general nature, so calamitous to the reputation of an injured individual, and so unfavourable to the interests of religion. The person above referred to, who was with Mr. Pike but a few hours before he died, assures the writer, that his end was peace. In the prospect of dissolution, he was calm, resigned, and happy; so that, instead of his sun setting in a cloud, it shone brilliant to the last. The infirmities of age came upon him sooner than common, and he died after a short confinement, in the spring of 1778, at the age of 56 years. He lies buried in the Church-yard at Trowbridge.*
The character of Mr. Pike, after his exclusion from the Pinners'-Hall lecture, sunk considerably in the estimation of the religious world; but this is not at all surprising, when we consider the influence of prejudice, and how much it predominates over the minds of those whom we would charitably hope to be good men. Though a man of learning and piety, and a considerable biblical scholar, yet the fact of his yielding to the powerful reasoning of Sandeman, was sufficient to fix upon him the stigma of heresy, and exclude him the society of his former friends and acquaintance. After his expulsion, he published four sermons, two only of which were preached : they were intended to vindicate his sentiments ; and are introduced by a preface, containing some account of the proceedings in that transaction. The subscribers' ballot for his exclusion, or continuance, was grounded on the following question :-“ Whether it is your opinion, that the Rev. Mr. Pike has so far changed his sentiments, since his being chosen to preach in this lecture, that he should continue one of your lecturers or not?” Mr. Pike had only one vote in his favour, but forty-four against him. From the
• Private Information and Mr. Pike's Works. Vol. II.
THREE CRANES, THAMES-STREET.--- Independent, Extinct.
opposition he experienced, a stranger would readily imagine, that nothing less than some dreadful charge of heresy, or immorality, had been brought against him. But no such thing appears ; nor, indeed, any direct or private accusation whatever. This he accounts for in the following way : “ The reason why they have not specified any article against me is, because they are conscious I should give a direct denial to it. They have, indeed, asserted abroad, that I deny the work of the Spirit, the saints' perseverance, and all Christian experience; these are all the charges that have come to my ears, which have any relation to the doctrines of the lecture, and all utterly false." His soundness in the doctrines of the gospel he established, in the following confession of his faith :“ I am fully persuaded (says he) of the doctrines of the ever blessed Trinity, the true divinity and humanity in the person of Christ; the perfection and vicariousness of his righteousness and atonement, as a substitute for sinners; the doctrines of particular election, and particular redemption ; of original sin imputed, and the universal corruption of human nature; the entire necessity, the absolute sovereignty, and uncontrol. lable efficacy of the Holy Spirit's work in the conversion of a ginner; together with the doctrine of the saint's perseverance.”— If these sentiments are not sufficient to screen a man from the charge of heresy, it is not easy to say what will. Mr. Pike, doubtless, had his failings; but they were not such as to tarnish the lustre of his character, either as a theologian, a philosopher, or a Christian. (2)
(e) Works.—1. The Connexion between Faith and Free-Grace : represented in a Discourse preached at the Rev. Mr. Hall's meeting-house, upon the Pavement in Moorfields, May, 1748, at the Return of the Monthly Meeting. Rom. iv. 16.—2. Philosophia Sacra : or, the Principles of Natural Philosophy, extracted from Divine Revelation. 8vo. 1753.-3. Thoughts upon such Passages of Scripture as ascribe Affections and Passions to the Deity. 1753.-4. Zeal and Charity united : a Sermon at the late Mr. Bentley's Meeting-place, Crispin-street, Feb. 8, 1753, before the Society concerned in the Education of godly young Men for the Ministry. Phil. i. 27.5. Several Cases of Conscience ; delivered at the Casuistical Lecture, Little St. Helen's, 2 vols. 12mo. 1755.–6. The Assemblies Catechism analyzed, explained, &c. 1755.—7. Correspondence with Mr. Sandeman. 1758.-S. The Touchstone of saving Faith, or, a plain and brief Answer to two impor.
THREE CRANES, THAMES-STREET.--Independent, Extinct.
After the departure of Mr. Pike, whose connexion with the church at the Three Cranes was dissolved about the 14th of December, 1765, the vacancy was filled up by Mr. Thomas VINCENT, a deacon of the congregation, who was elected to the office of minister, on the 25th of the same month. After a considerable interval, Mr. Benjamin Parker, a member of the church, was associated with him in the work of the ministry; but, in the course of a few years, taking some offence, he left the church, and joined Mr. Clayton's congregation at the Weigh-House. Mr. Vincent growing old and infirm, resigned the ministry; after which the people continued to meet together, and conduct public worship among themselves, till their number was so reduced that they were forced to break up. This event took place early in the year 1798. It is somewhat remarkable, that the first and last ministers of the church at the Three Cranes, bore the same names. *
Very soon after the dissolution of this ancient Society, the meeting-house at the Three Cranes was taken upon lease, by the congregation under the care of Mr. Thomas Davies. The place having been repaired and new modelled, was re-opened on the 7th of June, 1798. Mr. Davies is by birth a Welchman, and was educated under the Countess of Huntingdon's patronage, in his own country. Upon his coming to London, he soon raised a congregation, which met first in Bunhill-Row, and afterwards in Bartholomew-Close; from whence he removed to the present place. His congregation is numerous; and the worship conducted upon the Independent plan. tant Questions.-9. Saving Grace, Sovereign Grace : set forth in two Sermons at the Merchants' Lecture, in Pinners'-Hall. 1758. Exod. xxxiii. 19.10. Free Grace indeed. 1759.-11. A Dispassionate Narrative of the Rise, Progress, and Issue of the late Schism in the Church under the pastoral Care of Samuel Pike. 1760.-19. A compendious Hebrew Lexicon : To which is prefixed, a short Hebrew Grammar. 8vo. 1766.-13. A plain and full Ac. count of the Christian Practices observed by the Church in St. Martin's-leGrand, London, and other Churches in Fellowship with them. In a Lettes to a Friend. 1767. N. B. This piece is anonymous.
GREAT ST. THOMAS APOSTLE.
PRESBYTERIAN-EXTINCT. The meeting-house in Great St. Thomas APOSTLE, is situated over a gateway, on both sides of which it is accessible by means of a flight of stairs. Its outside appearance has nothing remarkable to distinguish it from the other houses in the street, in wiich respect, the situation is better suited to former times of persecution, than to the present reign of liberty. It is a small inconvenient building, with three galleries, and was formed into a meeting-house in the early part of the last century, for the congregation under the care of the Rev. Benjamin Andrew Atkinson, Before his time they assembled in a hall, or large room, near Paternoster-row. The earliest minister upon record was the Rev. Anthony Fido, one of the Bartholomew Confessors, and ejected from Hemmingborough, in Yorkshire. He was succeeded by Mr. Atkinson, who was assisted for sometime by Mr. John Sherman. Upon Mr. Atkinson's retiring into the country, the congregation, which was never large, became extinct, upwards of 60 years ago. The meeting-house was then taken by a congregation of Scotch Seceders, under the pastoral care of Mr. David Wilson, who was succeeded by Mr. Jerment. His congregation has lately removed to a larger place, in Oxendon-street, near the Haymarket, built for the famous Mr. Richard Baxter, but lately a Chapel of Ease, to the parish of St. Martin's. The meeting-house in St. Thomas Apostle, is now undergoing a thorough repair, upon what is called speculation ; but in the present day of endless adventurers, most probably, will not remain long unoccupied.-We proceed to lay before the reader, the brief information we possess relating to the old Presbyterian church.
GREAT ST. THOMAS APOSTLE. - Presbyterian, Extinct.
ANTHONY FIDO.—He was born August 20, 1640, at Stanford-upon-Teeme, in Worcestershire. His father was a gentleman of considerable estate, and had an elder son, Mr. John Fido, who was ejected by the Bartholomew Act, from Whittlebury, in Northamptonshire, and died in London, about 1661, in his 37th year.* Mr. Anthony Fido, received his education in Trinity College, Cambridge; and his tutor was a Mr. Valentine. At bis admission, he was examined by Mr. Ray, then steward of the college. After sometime he was promoted to a fellowship, and to a considerable living in the county of Cambridge. But he lost these preferments at the Restoration, being then ready to take his degree. The living of Hemmingburgh, in Yorkshire, being then vacant, Mr. Fido was presented to it; but continued there only till Bartholomew-day, 1662, when he was ejected for Nonconformity. He then became chaplain and steward in a gentleman's family, and preached in various parts of England. About 1684, he came to London, where he had a small congregation, but was disabled fr preaching a few years before his death, which took place January 17, 1714-5, aged 75 years. He lies interred in Bunhill-fields.t
BENJAMIN ANDREW ATKINSON.-Concerning this gentleman we can state but few particulars. He was son to the well-known author of “ The Epitome of Navigation.” Mr. Fido being disabled by weakness, Mr. Atkinson was chosen his assistant, and ordained co-pastor. January 7, 1713. The celebrated Matthew Henry preached upon the occasion, and Mr. Jeremiah Smith gave the exhortation. For convenience, the service was conducted in Silver-street; and both discourses were published, together with Mr. Atkinson's confession of faith. Upon the death of Mr. Fido, in January, 1715, he succeeded to the whole charge, and not long afterwards, removed his congregation to a new
• Calamy's Contin. p. 649.
+ Ibid. p.956.