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ever he commanded, with the hope of all things common, and sold their posthe promise, “ I am with you to the sessions and goods, and parted them end of the world.” If acted on, where to all, as every man had need.” “And is our faith if we doubt the fulfilment they continued daily with one accord, of this promise? We find, on refer- and did eat their meat with gladness ring to the apostles' understanding of and singleness of heart, praising God, the commission, they disobeyed it; having favor with all the people ; and for, having been directed to remain the Lord added the saved to the church in Jerusalem until they were endued daily” (Acts ii. 37-46.) We are told with power from on high, (Luke xxiv. that this state of order could not now 49) in the first chapter of Acts it ap- be attended to by the disciples of pears they disobeyed this injunction Christ. I ask, why?“ Oh! am I they did not wait until the Spirit was to sell my property, and feed people given : but Peter, who on other occa- going about idle ?" By no means, sions was more forward than he ought for the Apostle Paul (2 Thes. iii. 10) to be, proposed that one should be ap- commands" that if any would not pointed in the place of Judas ; and work, neither should he eat.” But although they prayed, yet not for di- if my brethren in Christ, as well as rection as to the act, but as to the my brethren after the flesh were in choice, and having cast lots — which want, my duty would be to make any they never saw on any occasion order- sacrifice rather than they should ed or sanctioned by the Lord Jesus starve. Let it, however, be borne in and one was chosen by them, we do mind, there is no fear that the Godnot find ever approved by the Lord, fearing man or woman will be in nor do we find that any of their mea-want : faithful men and women who sures were ever afterwards decided are deserving of full confidence, are by lot, while we find that Paul was never found destitute - even the unchosen as an apostle. If the choice godly will lay hold on them as trustby lot had been approved, all difficul-worthy and employ them! I have ties would have continued to be set seen as much of the world and human tled in the same manner by all Chris nature as perhaps any man, from my tians. The event referred to by the various public stations in life ; and in Lord, of tarrying at Jerusalem until all the cases of distress and want that endued with power from on high, we ever came to my knowledge, I never find in the 2nd of Acts, was fulfilled found one in hopeless want, or entirely by “ cloven tongues of fire” from hea- destitute, that had an abiding sense of ven. When the multitude were God's providence ! I am anxious to moved by what Peter stated, they said follow out the blessings which perto him and the rest of the apostles, tain to a church of God, where all “Men and brethren, what shall we their acts and measures are in accorddo ?” Peter said unto them, “Repentance with the churches which “ in and be baptized, every one of you, Judea were in Christ Jesus” (1 Thes. in the name of Jesus Christ, for the ii. 14); as, also, like the church at remission of sins, and ye shall receive Corinth, (1 Cor. xi. 2) who kept the the gift of the Holy Ghost.” “Then | ordinances as they were delivered to they that gladly received the word them by the apostles. I would entreat were baptized, and the same day all who are disposed to examine their there were three thousand souls add- | profession as Christians, to try themed to them.” “ And they continued selves by the word of God, as set steadfastly (or statedly) in the apostles' forth in the following passages :doctrine, in fellowship, in breaking of Mat. viii. 21, xv. 8; John vi. 53-6bread, and in prayers.” “ And all 63, x. 27, xiv. 15-21, xv. 10; 1 John that believed were together, and had ' ii. iii. iv. ; Rev. xxii. 14. If we are governed by the principles and rules the judgments of God! A sparrow laid down in the New Testament, as cannot fall but is known to, and alone it respects our walk and conversation by, the power of God. The wind, as before the world - as far as we ob- well as his Spirit, reaches all life, both serve any man actuated by such prin man and beast. In Him we live and ciples, we will be constrained to say, move, and from Him we have our 6: happy is that man !”
being : “He surroundeth our path, The following are some leading and is acquainted with all our ways” principles which have ever proved a (Psalm cxxxix.) blessing and a proof of wisdom in I close by asking those who hold those who carried them out in life. that obedience to the requirements of I shall set forth a few of the maxims the Christian walk is impracticalto prove how well adapted to produce 1st, Are there any restraints but such peace and joy :-Rom. xii. xiii. and as contribute to the happiness of those xiv. ; the Apostle James affords spe- who obey them ? 2nd, Are there any cial guidance in the i. ii. and iïi. chap- rules or regulations laid down for ters ; also Peter, in his Epistles. To kings, magistrates, parents, children, enumerate all the wise and heavenly masters, or servants, but ministers to instruction in the New Testament ob- their happiness if acted upon ? 3rd, ligatory on Christians, would be tran- Does any Christian know of an inscribing the greater part of the Bible ; stance where the rule set forth in the but the man or woman who looks for 18th of Matthew by the blessed Sajoy or peace, and the fulfilment of viour, as to dealing with a Christian Christ's promises, must ever keep in brother, has failed of its effect, if actmind, that it is alone upon their ad-ed on in the spirit of sincerity and hering to the terms Christ has laid | love ? down in Mat. xxviii. 19-20, to which The servant of Christ has nothing I have already adverted, that his pro- to do with sedition, wars, or tumults. mise can be pleaded. This will lead If he cannot be permitted to live us to examine as to an obedience inquietly where he is, the Lord will his worship; and should any inquirer open a residence to which he can be led to search for the cause of the flee. May the Lord lead all who prorejection and casting off the children fess his name, to walk worthy of their of Israel, he will find it was on ac- profession. In the language of Paul count of their departure from the to the church at Ephesus, “ Grace be order of worship ordained. See 1st with all them that love our Lord Jesus Samuel xv. 22, &c. as to obedience. | Christ in sincerity. Amen." These things were written for our ad
JAMES BUCHANAN. monition (1 Cor. x. 11.) The qualifications of bishops or elders and dea
SCRIPTURE DIFFICULTIES. cons, and how they should be liberally supported by their brethren, are all
NO. XXI. set forthnothing is enjoined to be “ Brethren, pray for us, that the word of done but what is plainly revealed, the Lord may have free course and be glorified.” while the doing of what is not enjoin
(2 Thess. iii. 1.) ed is sin. No expediency or autho- Do any of us use these words when rity rests with any to sanction adding we bow our knees and hearts in humto or omitting. I would openly de- ble prayer to our heavenly Father ? clare my firm conviction, there is not If we do, what are the favors we then a devoted obedient child of God, who ask ? Should any be unprepared suffers, or has suffered from war, pes- with a satisfactory answer, this entilence, or famine, which have so deavour to ascertain what blessings largely prevailed of late. All, all are 'St. Paul desired through the Thessa
lonian disciples' prayer may be the gospel with success.” But, dear more acceptable.
brethren, when we are kneeling down Do we, by using them, adopt the and humbly entreating our kindlypopular persuasion, that a special listening Father to grant us his covedivine influence is in each case ne- nanted mercies, we ought not to be cessary to give the word of Christ its in any doubt as to what we ask, or be saving effect in the conversion of a unmindful of the promise on which sinner; and, that his gospel is power- our petition is founded. Let us go less, however attentively heard and carefully into this matter. clearly understood, unless the sinner's 1st. Must we of necessity conclude mind is, by an internal operation of that the gospel testimony can no the Holy Spirit, disposed or made otherwise be glorified than by sinners' willing to believe and embrace it ? conversion ; although the Gentiles at And do we, according to that per- Antioch in Pisidia seem to have suasion, ask Him to bless his own “glorified the word of the Lord” by preached word; to send down his extolling or praising it ? divine power with his gospel into | 2nd. Must we of necessity believe sinners' hearts to make his truth ef- that the words are generally applifectual to their enlightenment, re- cable in prayers for others, although generation, and conversion, that so the Thessalonians' prayer was to be his word may be glorified ? And specially for St. Paul and his brother do we therefore adopt the pious apostles ? phrases, “ I was powerfully led to see These questions seem to open the my sinfulness ;" “By a work of grace truth to our niinds, and our minds to on my heart I was enabled to repent the truth : for we are at once inclined and turn to the Lord ;" “ It was given to reply, “There may have been other me to believe the gospel and to hope ways in which the word of the Lord in Christ ?" If such are our per- could be glorified ; and there may suasions, intentions, and declarations, have been special petitions for the in the use of these words we may divinely commissioned apostles which well cling to them, for if they fail to are not applicable to us.” warrant us we shall in vain look for But there are intimations in the other authority.
following sentences, which help us But if we disclaim such persuasions in this inquiry: 1st, “Even as among and intentions, it may be asked, what you”—so that we are to learn how the blessings do we in these words pray word of the Lord had run or rapidly for ? A Wesleyan says, “We ought spread at Thessalonica ; and how it to unite in prayer and continue to had been glorified, or magnified, or pray until the blessing sought is honored, (the original word being obtained until thousands on every rendered by all three) among the hand are converted to God.” And a Thessalonians. 2nd, “That we aposScotch Baptist observes, “If (in con- tles may be delivered from brutish version) the agency of the Holy Spirit and evil men, for all men have not be not requisite to shine into the heart, faith,” or faithfulness, which was causing light to spring up out of dark-clearly to be a special petition of the ness, even the light of the knowledge | Thessalonian believers for the aposof the glory of God in the face of tle's deliverance from the wicked Jesus Christ, then all prayer for any persons alluded to St. Paul was such blessing is superseded, and the then, it is believed, at Corinth, where individual who engages in it, while both open enemies, and false “faithholding such a sentiment can only be less" brethren, were known to be acmocking heaven with idle words while tuated by deadly designs against him. he prays that God would crown his Under such circumstances he might well entreat the churches to pray to the the Lord co-operating with them and Father on his behalf: but his own confirming the word by signs” — deliverance was, with him, a se- doubtless such as the wonders on condary consideration ; his first was, / Pentecost, the cure of the lame man the glorification and spread of his at the Temple gate, the healing of gospel.
diseases by the shadow of Peter, the Now considering St. Paul's posi- cure of Dorcas, and of the impotent tion-an ambassador of heaven, en-man at Lystra : each case producing trusted with a glorious mission of more or less effects as the cure of heavenly light and redeeming love Eneas, namely, “ all they of Lydda from King Jesus to Gentile nations, and Saron saw it and turned to the yet on every occasion dependant Lord." These miracles left the sinupon the heavenly Father's “ own ner no excuse. Accordingly the will” in answer to prayer for the Apostle asks the Hebrew believers, credentials of his mission — what “ How shall we escape if we neglect might we expect to be the most so great salvation, which beginning earnest wish of his ardent mind in to be spoken by the Lord, was conhis ever-present anxiety to turn men firmed to us by those who heard him, from darkness to light and from Sa- God also bearing them witness by tan to God ? May we not be assured signs, and wonders, and divers mirait was this, that his divine message cles, and distributions of the Holy might every where be divinely ac Spirit according to his own pleasure ?” credited : that his supernatural testi- But did the Thessalonians comply mony might be supernaturally con- with Paul's request, and did the Lord firmed ; and that by stupendous give the asked-for blessings ? Both miracles his gospel might, even to these questions must be answered in Idolaters, be made “a credible saying, the affirmative, for we read (Acts worthy of all acceptation,” to spread xix. 11) that “God wrought extrarapidly from man to man, and from ordinary miracles by the hands of heart to heart? We here naturally Paul, so that handkerchiefs or aprons ask, had his message of mercy been were carried from his person to those thus attested among the Thessa- that were sick, and the diseases delonians ? Paul himself furnishes the parted from them, and the evil spirits reply—“Our gospel came not unto came out”-wonders that so greatly you in word only, but also in power, confirmed, honored, and glorified the and in the Holy Spirit, and in much word he preached, as to make it assurance :" adding that they, see- credible and acceptable to thousands, ing his preaching thus divinely con- some of whom proved their faith by firmed, received it, as in truth the the burning books valued at 50,000 word of God; became followers of pieces of silver ; “so mightily grew the churches of Christ in Judea, and the word of God and prevailed,” that from them sounded out the same through the Thessalonians' prayer. word on every side. He could there- Prayers, by the disciples, for the fore with much propriety entreat them apostles, having for their object conto pray for him, that his message firmatory miracles, improved utte. might, at other places also, be honored rance, and deliverance from unfaithful and made credible by wonders and men, were frequently made as occapowers, as it had been among them- sions called for them. At Jerusalem selves.
| when the apostles were persecuted by The heavenly King, before his the Rulers the brethren cried, “Lord ascension, promised his apostles these behold their threatenings, and grant attestations. Mark informs us “they unto thy servants (apostles) that with went forth and preached every where,'all boldness they may speak thy word,
by stretching forth thine hand to heal, A desire expressed by the Editor and that signs and wonders may be of the Harbinger on the last cover, to done by the name of thy holy child bring this matter to a close with this Jesus :" when lo ! a shaking of the communication, leads us to conclude, place, and a divine boldness in the not to attempt an exhibition of proof speaking, intimated that the prayer that PASTORS OUGHT NOT TO BE PAID was heard and answered. It is thus-but to confine oneself to showing, manifest that apostolic preaching that Brother Lee presents no reasons owed not its amazing success to per- for concluding in favor of the contrary suasive words of human eloquence, | position. but to these demonstrations of the We must first notice some misrepspirit and of power : and that the resentations of a few phrases in our converts' faith rested not upon the former letter Brother Lee cites our wisdom of men but on the power of words “ high offence,” and “ deluGod. Thus it was that the Lord ding the brethren,” as if we had apopened to his apostles doors of faith, plied them to him on account of his and diffused by them, the odour of having mistaken the words time and the knowledge of Him in every place. misthos, and affirming that it was the
That miraculous attestations are law of heaven to pay pastors. The now neither promised or given, is phrases which Brother Wallis hopes manifest to all. The fact that they will be avoided, were not used in rehave not been given since the com- lation to Brother Lee's mistake or his pletion of the divine code, is proof opinion. This mistake J. G. Lee sufficient that in the estimation of made, which we wrote to the Harour heavenly Father they have not binger to correct, requesting him, for been needed. The prophecies con- | the satisfaction of the reader, to actained in that code, fulfilled, fulfilling, knowledge the error : months passed and to be fulfilled, are, to us, at least away, and no acknowledgment—no equal to miracles. It only therefore notice. In the meantime we had the remains to be observed, that seeing testimony of a brother that J. G. Lee the Thessalonians' were here asked to had admitted to him his mistake, pray that divine manifestations might which led us to write again, urging attend the apostles' preaching, and that he was bound to announce it, seeing that such manifestations are and intimating that for one to print not promised to us and are not ex- an error, and to refuse or neglect to pected by us, we ought not to use recall the same upon finding it to be these words in our humble pleadings one, was to “ commit a high offence" at the throne of grace. *
and to "delude the brethren.” Thus J. DAVIES. lour words were applied not to the
mistake, but to the refusal publicly
to acknowledge it. THE PAYMENT OF PASTORS. This brings us to J. G. Lee's last In this notice of the article contain
paper, which we shall designate as
weak and contradictory, and at once ed in the last number but one of the British Millennial Harbinger, it is
proceed to analyse it. “ Feed the
flock of God which is among you, not our intention to prove that pastors
taking the oversight thereof, not by may not be paid, although we hold
constraint, but willingly; not for that the paying of them is a main
filthy lucre, but of a ready mind” (1 pillar of the apostacy, and subversive
Peter v. 2): “Let the elders that rule of true and undefiled religion.
well be counted worthy of double ho* Erratum-page 419, 2nd column, 9th line nour, especially they who labor in the from top, for “ eminent” read “penitent.” I word and doctrine ; for the Scripture