Methodists, Dialectic, or Romish
Methodists, Dialectic, Or Romish as they have also been called, flourished near the middle of the 17th century. They were priests of 'the Church of Rome, who attempted, by ingenious sophistry, to refute the arguments employed against them by the Protestant (Huguenot.) party. Mosheim (Ecclesiastes Hist. vol. iii) arranges these "Methodists" under two classes. According to his classification, the one party' in their controversies urged their opponents to adduce direct proof of their doctrines by an appeal to the statements of the Holy Scripture. The other party refused to encounter the Protestants by arguing with them on the various disputed points, but sought to overcome them by adducing certain great principles involving the whole subject. Thus they insisted that the Church which was chargeable with changing or modifying its doctrines could not have the Holy Spirit for its guide.
In England the term Methodist is frequently applied to a person who becomes religious, without reference to any particular sect or party, and especially to ministers of the Church of England who are evangelical and zealous in their preaching.