The principal acts of the general assembly, convened at Edinburgh, May 22, 1788.
I. Sess. 1, May 22, 1788.—The King's Commission to David Earl of Leven produced,
and ordered to be recorded.
The General Assembly, &c.
II. Sess. 1, May 22, 1788.—The King's most gracious Letter to the General Assembly,
presented to them by his Majesty's Commissioner.
George R., &c.
III. Sess. 3, May 24, 1788.—The General Assembly's Answer to the King's most gracious
May it please your Majesty, &c.
IV. Sess. 7, May 29, 1788.—An Address by the General Assembly to his Majesty, on the
proposed Commemoration of the glorious Revolution.
May it please your Majesty,
We, your Majesty's most dutiful subjects, the ministers and elders of the Church
of Scotland, met in the National Assembly, beg leave to approach your throne with
hearts full of loyalty and affection.
We should be unworthy of the station we hold, if we did not gladly embrace
this first opportunity of congratulating your Majesty on the happy effects of your
wise and vigorous measures during the course of last year, when, under the direction of Divine Providence, you delivered this nation from the danger of being involved in war, by preserving the independence, and re-establishing the legal government of a neighbouring Protestant State, and happily revived with it an ancient and
close alliance, which, for so long a period, had been salutary to your Majesty's kingdoms.
While we contemplate the present posture of our public affairs in general, and our
friendly league with the Republic of the United Provinces in particular, with thankfulness to Heaven, and the warmest approbation of your Majesty's conduct, we feel
ourselves called upon to commemorate that glorious event, the Revolution of 1688,
which delivered us from Poperty and arbitrary power, and fixed that constitution of
government which is the wonder and envy of the world, not more for civil and political liberty, than, for justice and humanity—which has hitherto had force sufficient
to repair its internal disorders, as well as to repel external violence, and which the
experience of a century now entitles us to hope may be as lasting as it is excellent—an event, the more endeared to our remembrance, as from thence was derived the
settlement of the crown of Britain on your Majesty's illustrious family, who have
hitherto swayed the sceptre with so much wisdom and equity; and with such a
sacred regard to the rights of the nation, as to secure the confidence and affection
of their subjects, and to leave no doubt on our minds that the stability of the constitution, and the prosperity of the people, will ever continue to be the great object
of their government.
With such deep impressions of the felicity of the that great era, to which, besides all
other advantages, we owe the restoration and security of our ecclesiastical establishment, your Majesty may be assured that we shall neglect no proper opportunity of
making the people under our care duly sensible of the distinguished blessings they
enjoy under Divine Providence, and of exciting in their minds sentiments of affection and loyalty to your Majesty, the faithful guardian of all our liberties.
That your Majesty may reign long over a free and happy people; that the Almighty may guard your sacred person from every danger, and bestow on you every
blessing; that he may bless and preserve the Queen, Prince of Wales, and all the
Royal Family; and that a race of kings of your illustrious line may, to the latest
posterity, sit on the throne of these realms, is the earnest prayer of,
May it please your Majesty, your Majesty's most faithful, most obedient,
and most loyal subjects, the Ministers and Elders met in this National Assembly of the Church of Scotland.
Signed in our name, in our presence, and at our appointment, by
Archibald Davidson, Moderator.
V. Sess. 9, May 31, 1788.—Commission to some Ministers and Ruling Elders for the
Reformation of the Highlands and Islands of Scotland, and for Managing his Majesty's Royal Bounty for that end.
The General Assembly, &c.
VI. Sess. 9, May 31, 1788.—Commission to some Ministers and Ruling Elders for
discussing Affairs referred to them.
The General Assembly, &c.
VII. Sess. ult., June 2, 1788.—Overture respecting the Ordination of Elders.
VIII. Sess. ult., June 2, 1788.—Overture respecting the Licensing of Probationers.
IX. Sess. 9, May 31, 1788.—Act concerning the Attestation of Kirk-Sessions to Commissions from Burghs.
It was overtured to the General Assembly, that, for removing certain difficulties in
the mode of attesting commissions from certain burghs, the Assembly should pass
an Act to the following purport:—
Whereas, by the 9th Act of Assembly, 1718, and the 4th Act of Assembly, 1720,
it is ordained and required, That commissions from royal burghs, to their representatives in the General Assembly, shall be attested by the kirk-sessions of the
electing burghs respectively:
The Assembly, considering that in certain of the greater burghs within the bounds
of this Church there are several parishes and different kirk-sessions within the
royalty; and that, in these cases, there has been hitherto no legal enactment to direct
the mode in which the sessional attestations are to be adhibited to commissions from
such burghs to their representatives in the General Assembly:
To remove any doubts which may arise in such situations, the Assembly hereby
appoints and declares, That the attestation of any one kirk-session within the electing burgh shall be held as competent and sufficient to all the purposes for which sessional attestations are required.
X. Sess. 7, May 29, 1788.—Act appointing a National Thanksgiving in Commemoration of the Revolution in 1688.
The General Assembly of the Church of Scotland, recollecting, with gratitude to
Almighty God, the happy and glorious event, that, in the year 1688, (of which the
present year is the secular anniversary,) delivered the nation from civil and religious
oppression, set proper bounds to the royal prerogative, secured the liberties and just
rights of the people, and confirmed to this National Church all the religious rights
and privileges which she now enjoys under the illustrious House of Hanover—and
being fully convinced, that the principles of the Revolution settlement are the only
foundation on which the security of the throne, and the happiness of the subjects,
can be permanently established, They think themselves called upon, by their duty to
God and to their country, to embrace every proper opportunity of recalling to the
serious and grateful recollection of the people committed to their charge this special interposition of Divine Providence in their favour, of impressing on their minds
a lively sense of the value of the civil and religious liberties thereby attained, and
of exhorting them, by every constitutional means, to preserve and transmit them inviolate to the latest posterity. And considering that the blessings enjoyed by the
people of this free and happy country, in consequence of the Revolution, do far
exceed the measure of civil and religious advantages which the Providence of God
hath allotted to any other nation: Therefore, the General Assembly did, and hereby do, appoint the fifth day of November this year to be observed within the bounds
of this National Church as a day of solemn thanksgiving to Almighty God, for the
enjoyment of those inestimable blessings for a century past, and of earnest supplication for their continuance to the latest generations: And the Assembly enjoins all
ministers to intimate this Act from their pulpits upon the Lord's Day immediately
preceding the said fifth day of November this year, and to accompany the intimation
with suitable exhortations.
XI. Sess. ult., June 2, 1788.—Act appointing the Diet of the next General Assembly.
The next General Assembly of this National Church is appointed to be held
within the New Church Aisle of Edinburgh, on Thursday, the 21st day of May, in
the year 1789.
Collected and extracted from the Records of the General Assembly, by
John Drysdale, Cl. Eccl. Scot.