« FöregåendeFortsätt »
OURS is a period of no common kind. The path of duty to a Christian is now unusually difficult. It seems to me, however, to be comprehended in two words-Be QUIET and USEFUL. The precept is short; but the application of it requires much grace and wisdom. Take not a single step out of a quiet obscurity, to which
you are not compelled by a sense of utility.
Two parties have divided the world,
are desperadoes : the earth's torment and plague. Bishop Horsley said well of them, lately from the pulpit-" These are they, who have poisoned Watts's Hymns for Children, These are they, who are making efforts to contaminate every means of access to the public mind. And what is their aim? What are their pretensions?—That they will have neither Lord nor King over them. But, verily, one is their King: whose name, in the Hebrew tongue, is Abaddon; but, in the Greek tongue, he is called Apollyon; and, in plain English~ The Devil' My soul come not thou near the tents of these wicked men!"
“ But the ANTIJACOBINS?”—Their project, as a body, leaves God out of the question. Their proposal is unholy. I cannot be insensible to the Security, Order, and Liberty, with which these kingdoms are favoured above all other nations ; but I cannot go forth with these men, as one of their party. I cannot throw up my hat, and shout “ Huzza!" Woe to the world, if even THEY prevail !
The world is a lying, empty pageant; and these men are ensnared with the show. My part in it, as a Christian, is to act with simplicity 'as the servant of God. What does God bid me do? What, in this minute of time, which will be gone and carry me with it into Eternity, what is my path of duty? While enemies blaspheme, and friends are beguiled, let me stand on my watchtower, with the Prophet, listening what the Lord God shall say to me. In any scheme of man I dare not be drunken. - We, who are of the day, must be sober. Churchman or Dissenter, if I am a true Christian, I shall talk thus to my connections. The sentiment of the multitude is ensnaring; but the multitude is generally wrong. I must beware of the contagion. Not that I am to push myself into consequence. The matter is between me and
my God-Not one step out of a holy quiet and obscurity, but in order to utility.
Yet we must be active and bold, whenever duty calls us to be so. My own conduct, with respect to the religious world, is too much formed on my feelings. I see it in what I deem a lamentable state; but I seem to say “Well! go on talking, and mistaking, and making a noise: only make not a noise here:” and then I retire into my closet, and shrink within myself. But, had I more Faith, and Simplicity, and Love, and SelfDenial, I might do all I do in my present sphere, but I should throw myself in the midst of them, and intreat and argue and remonstrate.
But then such a man must give himself up as a Sacrifice. He would be misrepresented and calumniated from many quarters. But he would make up his account for such treatment. How would St. Paul have acted in such a state of the Church? Would he not have displayed that warm spirit, which made him say O foolish Galatians ! who hath bewitched you? and that holy self-denial, which dictated I will very gladly spend and be spent for you, though the more exceedingly I love you the less I be loved ?
It is not to be calculated, how much a single man may effect, who throws his whole powers into a thing. Who, for instance, can estimate the influence of VOLTAIRE! He shed an influence of a peculiar sort over Europe. His powers were those of a gay buffoon-far different from those of HUME, and others of his 'class-bút he threw himself wholly into them. It'is true these men meet the wickedness or the imbecility of the hu'man mind; but there are many right-hearted people, who hang a long time on the side of pure, silent, simple religion. Let a man, who sees things as I do, throw himself out with all his powers, to rescue and guide such persons.
I NEVER gathered from Infidel Writers, when an avowed Infidel myself, any solid difficulties, which were not brought to my mind by a very young child of my own. Why was sin permitted ?"_" What an insignificant world is this to be redeemed by the Incarnation and Death of the Son of God !"" Who can believe that so few will be saved ?"-Objections of this kind, in the mind of reasoning young persons, prove to me that they are the growth of fallen nature.
The nurse of Infidelity is Sensuality. Youth are sensual. The Bible stands in their
It prohibits the indulgence of the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eye, and the pride of life. But the young mind loves these things; and therefore, it hates the Bible which prohibits them. It is prepared to say, “ If any man will bring me arguments against the Bible, I will thank him: if not, I will invent them.”