#16 – A SNIPPET FROM THE DOCTRINE OF ETERNAL TORMENTS OVERTHROWN – by Samuel Richardson, edited by Thomas Whittemore, and published by him in 1833. On page 85, Whittemore says that Richardson wrote this book nearly 200 years before 1833.
First of all, there is what Richardson wrote nearly 200 years before 1833: "The doctrine of endless hell torments hath caused many to murder themselves, taking away their own lives by poison, stabbing, drowning, hanging, strangling, and shooting themselves, casting themselves out of windows, and from high places, to break their necks and by other kinds of death, that they might not live to increase their sin, and increase their torments in hell."
Now here is what Whittemore the editor, wrote at the bottom of the page nearly 200 years later in 1833:
"Here we see the same dreadful effects attended the doctrine of endless misery nearly 200 years ago which attend it now. It was then the cause of anxiety, despair, and suicide, as we suppose it always was before, where fully believed, and as we know it has been of late years. Let posterity know, that within the last ten years, there have been a large number of suicides, which must be attributed to the doctrine of endless torment. That doctrine makes men melancholy; it drives them to despair; they know not what to do; and they sever the brittle thread, Fathers and Mothers, in repeated instances in the United States, have murdered their children, lest they should grow up, and commit sin, and be damned. Can a doctrine which produces such dreadful consequences be the doctrine of God?" End of Quote.