Imágenes de páginas

lent system of religion, which Greek text of the New Testathe world ever beheld, a system ment, and I think is one of the to the excellency of which its most valuable additions in supenemies have often subscribed, a port of the important doctrine system so well calculated to ad- of the divinity of Christ, that vance the glory of God, and pro- has appeared for many years. mote the temporal and eternal He establishes six important happiness of men, should be a rules of construction, which, cunning fable, invented by such though heretofore often hinted men for such purposes, with no at by former divines, yet have other prospect before them but never been so completely that of rendering themselves of brought to a point, and applied all men the most miserable, is so effectually to this essential such an extravagant hypothesis, doctrine, as by Mr. Sharp. as could enter into the mind of Added to this, is the substance of no man, unless of one who, dis- Six Letters, addressed to the aubelieving his Bible, was con- thor by a very able hand, (the demned by the just judgment of learned and Rev.C. Wordsworth) God to believe every thing else, proving the truth of the concluhowever absurd and ridiculous. sions from the writings of the Great is the truth and will pre- fathers, and even from those of vail.

T. the Arians and other opposers of

this doctrine, as early as the 4th

and 5th centuries. The follawing Lelter is from a re. The first rule is of the most spectable Layman in one of the importance : 66 That when two Middle States, to his friend in personal nouns of the same case Massachusetts, dated Oct. 28, are connected by the copulative 1807.

Xoth, if the former has the defiDEAR SIR,

nite article, and the latter has KNOWING your situation in the not, they both relate to the same church, and the opposition too person.” I would willingly give successfully made by many able you an abstract of this useful inen in the Eastern States, work, were I assured that you against the precious doctrines of had not seen it. But at all events the gospel, I am led to take the the substance of the review of it, freedom of communicating to in the Orthodox Churchman's you, the late republication of a Magazine and Review for Februsmall 12mo. volume of about 150 ary, 1803, cannot be disagreeapages in Phrladelphia, written by ble. It follows: Greenville Sharp, Esq. of Lon- “ The principal object of Mr. don, which, in my opinion, is a Sharp is to deduce from the great acquisition to the Christian New Testament, an important world. . You perhaps have seen it, rule, with regard to the strucand if so, this letter, though vain, ture of the Greek language, and as to you, will yet show my desire afterwards to apply that rule to of disseminating the knowledge the correction of the translation of this important, little work of several passages in our ese

It contains remarks on the tablished English version of the use of the definite article in the scriptures ; which passages will be found, when rendered accord- nothing, which in any respect ing to Mr. Sharp's ideas, to con- tends to impeach its certainty tain the most express testimo- and universality. nies to the divinity of our Sa. Let the thousands of readers viour. The rule in question is as of Greek, produce a few instanabove stated. A large collection ces to contradict the rule, and of passages from the New Tes- then will be the proper time to tament is here exhibited to afford consider, whether or not it must sufficient and satisfactory in- be given up forever. The constances of the rule thus laid clusions however seem in gendown. The texts referred to by eral to be secured within a secMr. Sharp, and which bring ond wall, by the interesting, and with them, according to his sys- we will say, surprising result of tem, the very important doctrin- the investigation of the laborious al conclusions, which we have author of the Six Letters, the briefly mentioned, are the follow- general object of which is, to aring: Acts xx. 28. (if we follow rive at those same conclusions by the reading, Toy sov xai Kuglov.) another road; to establish the Ephesians v. 5. 2 Thes. i. 112. same truths by a second, perI Tim. v. 21. 2 Tim. iv. 1. (if fectly distinct train of reasoning. we read, tou lov noko Kuesov.) Tit. « It occurred to me," says the ii. 13. 2 Pet. i. 1. and Jude 4. author, “ that I should probably All of which are therefore to be find some, at least, of those texts, rendered severally in these sig- the vulgar interpretation of nifications : Ist. The church of which you have called in queshim, who is Lord and God. 2d. tion, cited and explained by the In the kingdom of Christ our ancient fathers ; not indeed as God. 3d. According to the instances of any particular rule, grace of Jesus Christ, our God but expounded by them naturand Lord. 4th and 5th. Before ally, as men would understand Jesus Christ our God and Lord. any other form of expression in 6th. The glorious appearing of their native language. Jesus Christ, our great God and if these interpretations, thus Saviour. 7th. Of our God and discovered, should differ from Saviour, Jesus Christ. 8th. Our Mr. S. it would seem to follow, only Master, Jesus Christ, both that his rule would not be true ; God and Lord.

if they accorded with his, it The importance of this rule, would then seem that those conespecially on account of the very clusions must now, for a second striking conclusions to which it reason, be admitted. This inferthus leads us, will, we trust, suf- ence, however, would be still furficiently recommend it to the ther secured, if we should disstrictest investigation and scruti- cover from our investigation that ny of the learned world. For those heretics, who were most ourselves we freely declare, that pressed by these passages of having given the subject a con- scripture, while Greek was unsiderable portion of our atten- derstood as a living language, tion, we find daily fresh instan- never devised so ready an expe. ces and exemplifications of the dient of eluding their force, as rule, and as yet have met with modern ages have perpetually

had recourse to, viz. a pretended hence proving sufficiently in ambiguity in the form of ex- what sense even those writers, pression in the original. This who have not quoted them, did investigation presents us with an understand and would have exexample of well directed pa- plained and interpreted the pas tience and perseverance, which sages in question. has seldom been surpassed. Al. Having thus given a view of most all the vast remains of the the contents of these letters, we Greek fathers, and a great part shall conclude, with earnestly of the Latin, appear to have been recommending them to the noclosely examined. This con- tice of the public, and especially tains, as far as materials could be to those who have imbibed an infound, a history of the interpre- clination to Socinianism, to which tation of the texts in question, system, a blow seems to be here from the earliest times, nearly given, which must spread a sickto the age of the reformation. ness through the whole frame.

It is an important advantage of And though far from being prea this history, that we learn from judiced in favour of novelties in it, not only what is true, but we divinity, we cannot' but add, that discover also the origin and these works, are, in our estimaprogress of the false modern in- tion, calculated to produce the terpretation. In the last letter, most remarkable change, which a long series of instances is giv has long been witnessed in the en, tending to show that from theological world ; and as conthe very time of the apostles, the stituting together, though of a identical forms of expression, us- small size, the most important ed in these texts of St. Paul, &c. defence of Christian doctrines, were applied perpetually and in- which this age, by no means devariably, in the sense which is ficient in such, has produced.” agreeable to Mr. S.'s rule ; and Yours, very respectfully, -,




“ In our inquiries whether fane oaths and horrid imprecathe laws have been duly execut. tions, to be not only grating and ed, we are sorry to say, that the offensive to every pious mind, laws for the punishment of pro- and ruinous and destructive to fane swearing are not attended community in general, especially to, as a matter of such impore to youth ; but has a tendency tance requires.

likewise greatly to impair the * We consider the unnecessa- validity of an oath before the ry and profane taking the name magistrate. of God, which appears in pro- “Considerations like these, on Vol. III. No. 6.


a matter which so nearly con- countability to him ; and as the cerns the commonwealth, which veneration of the Deity, and a beare so necessary towards ensur- lief in his providence, is insepaing and continuing the divine rable from individual and social blessing and averting the tokens happiness, all the blessings of of divine displeasure, have de- friendly intercourse, of justice, termined us to say, that in this humanity and kindness, are in a particular, the law is not duly ex- great degree supported by a due ecuted.

observation of the same. “ The above mentioned seems « The law against intemperto have two sources; the de- ance seems not to be executed ficiency of the law, in that case agreeably to the wishes of sober made and provided, is this, that men in general. it does not sufficiently define the “No crime is, perhaps, atduty of the informing officers ; tended with more evil consebut more perhaps from this con- quences to society and individusideration, the too general neg- als, than that of drunkenness. lect of those officers who are ap- In proportion as this vice prepointed to carry this law into ex- vails, the morals of old and ecution. Melancholy is the young appear to be affected. If prospect to the state, so far as there be in any degree a reformthe neglecť prevails ; for by ation on this head, as many think reason of swearing, the land there is, we sincerely rejoice and mourns.

are glad; for we are sure that “ We can by no means neglect the glory of our state must conto mention, likewise, the undue sist in the virtue of her sons." execution of the law provided to restrain gaming ; a practice by which time is wickedly spent, property foolishly lost, or un

ANECDOTES. justly gained ; and a foundation hereby laid for tlre introduction

ANECDOTE OF A SAILOR. of every species of immorality and dissipation.

Mr. Pratt, in the second vol“ That law made for the ex- ume of his Gleanings, relates an press purpose of observing the affecting anecdote of a sailor on Sabbath, does not appear to have board the Venerable, the ship in been so executed as to answer the which Admiral Duncan comdesign of the law itself, nor the manded the fleet in the action expeclations of the serious part against the Dutch, off Camper of the community. Perhaps down. He received the account there is no one consideration of from Dr. Duncan, Lord Dunmore importance to the commu- can's chaplain and relative, who, nity, than the due observance of in the action, assisted the surthe Sabbath ; and it has the geon and his mate in binding up greatest tendency to confirm the wounds, and amputating the men in the belief, in the venera- limbs of the unfortunate suffer tion and esteem of a Supreme ers. “A mariner,” says the Being, in the conviction of his Doctor, “ of the name of Covey, providence, and their own ac was brought down to the surge

ry deprived of both his legs; Dutch feet, and their conversaand it was necessary, some liour's tion with each other concerning after, to amputate still higher. the heroic achievements they " I suppose," said Covey, with should perform, dispelled the an oath, “those scissors will gloomy subject from his mind. finish the business of the ball, As the two fleets were coming master mate?” “Indeed, my into action, the noble Admiral, brave fellow,” cried the surgeon, to save the lives of his men, or" there is some fear of it.” dered them to lie flat on the “Well, never mind," said Covey, deck, till, being nearer the ene. “ I have lost my legs to be sure, ny, their firing might do the and may hap may lose my life; more execution. The Dutch but," continued he, with a dread- ships at this time were pouring ful oath, we have beat the their broadsides into the VeneraDutch! we have beat the able, as she passed down part of Dutch! so I'll even have a the Dutch fleet, in order to break, nother cheer for it: Huzza! their line. This stout hearted huzza !”

and wicked Covey, having lost This anecdote is rendered all the impressions of his former more interesting still, by some reflections, heaped in rapid sucprior and subsequent circum- cession the most dreadful imprestances attending this poor sailor. cations on the eyes, and limbs, Covey was a good seaman, and and souls, of what he called his noticed among his ship mates for cowardly shipmates, for lying his intrepidity ; but he was pre- down to avoid the ball of the eminent in sin, as well as in Dutch. He refused to obey the courageous actions. About a, order till, fearing the authority fortnight before the English fell of an officer not far from him, he in with the Dutch fleet, he in part complied, by leaning over dreamed that they were in an a cask, which stood near, till engagement, in which both his the word of command was given legs were shot off, and that he to fire. At the moment of riswas out of his mind. The dream ing, a bar-shot carried away one made this courageous seaman of his legs and the greater part treinble, and sometimes attempt of the other; but, so instantaneto pray ; but, not liking to re- ous was the stroke, though he tain God in his thoughts, he en- was sensible of something like a deavoured to obliterate the im- jar in his limbs, he knew not pressions from his memory, and that he had lost a leg till his the recollection of his sins from stump came to the deck, and he his conscience, by drinking and foll. When his legs were amblasphemous intercourse with the putated higher up, and the noise ship's company. His efforts, of the battle had ceased, he however, were in vain. The thought of his dream; and exthoughts of his sins, of God, pected, that as one part of it was and of death, harassed his mind fulfilled, the other would be so day and night, and filled him too. Indeed, considering the with gloomy forebodings of what pain of amputating and dressing awaited him in this world and in both legs, and the agitation of the next, till the sight of the his mind from fearing the full

« AnteriorContinuar »