« AnteriorContinuar »
infapcy, that it is instantly admitted in- of the Pious-XXXII. On the peculiar to the abodes of bliss, notwithstanding Happiness of the Pious.” Vol. I. pp. it could never profit by any means of xv, xvi. religious instruction, or evince to those
The next class contains " direcaround it the existence of some good thing toward the Lord God of Israel,'
tions and encouragements to those is far from incredible, even though we
who are solicitous concerning their take into view the necessity of a taste eternal welfare.” There are two -suited to the nature of celestial felicity, Essays only under this class. in order to its possession and enjoy
" Essay XXXIII. On the Mode and ment. At the same time, whenever Means of becoming Pious—XXXIV: this divine principle exists in the heart On the Difficulties attending the Com. of a babe or suckling, undoubtedly as
mencement of Piety.” Vol. II. p. v. reason expands, and growing years enable it to communicate its ideas and The last class, which is addressfeelings, it will lisp the praises of its ed" to the truly pious according Saviour, and' seek the Lord God of its to the various relations and circumfathers.'” Vol. I. pp. 375, 376. stances in which they may be We cannot promise even a ge
placed,"extends from Essay XXXV. neral idea of the present, or of any
to Essay LX, succeeding, Essay in either volume. Essay XXXV. On the Evidence of Our object, in the extracts and true Piety in ourselves—XXXVI. On remarks bitherto made, has been the Evidence of real Piety in othersto exhibit to our readers the na. Temptation--XXXVIII. On the Temp
XXXVII. On the ordinary Sources of ture of Mr. Burnside's style, both tations of Evil Spirits—XXXIX. On the of thought and expression; and by Uses of Temptation-XL. On the Guilt the time we have given the remain- of yielding to Temptation-XLI. On ing catalogue of his Essays, we trust the Means of overcoming Temptationthey will be fully acquainted with XLII. On the Declension and Revival the general plan and tenor of his of Piety-XLIII. On the Preservation volumes.
and Improvemeut of Piety-XLIV. On The next series, which concludes Presumption in Religion-XLV. On the first volume, seems to corre
Religious Despondency-XLVI. On Imspond with the author's introduc. provement in the Worship and Service
of the Deity-XLVII. On Improvement tory designation, as containing “a
in Christian Principles-- XLVII. On reply to the many plausible excuses
Improvement in Christian Obedience that are made for the want of per- XLIX. On Religious Conversationsonal religion.” The subjects are L. On Austerity-LI, On Frivolity and as follow:
the Love of the World-LII. On the
Testimony of a Good Conscience “ Essay XX. On the Imperfections LIII. On Reputation-LIV. On Bigotry of the Traly Pious—XXI. On the Pe. -LV. OnLiberalityof Sentiment-LVI. culiar Disadvantages under which some
On Efforts for promoting Benevolence labour with regard to Piety-XXII. and Piety-LVII. On the Connexion On the Difficalties attending the Study between Piety and Patriotism-LVIII. of the Scriptures-XXIII. On the Re. On Religious Abstraction--LIX. On ligious Differences among the truly Weariness of Life-LX. Ou the Dread Pious—XXIV. On the Number of the of Death.” Vol. II. pp. V.-vii. Irreligious—XXV. On the Influence of Fashion in Religion-XXVI. On the
The whole is closed with an apCompatibleness of Piety with Intellec. pended Essay on the Importance of tual Improvement-XXVII. On the Learning to the Christian Minister. Compatibleness of Piety with Active This paper is marked by strong reaLife-XXVIII. On the Compatible- soning and discriminating powers; ness of Piety with Pleasure-XXIX. and indeed so much is there through?On the Compatibleness of Piety witlo different Circumstances and Ranks in out the whole work of sound ratiociLife-XXX. On the different kinds nation, of original remark, of reand Degrees of Piety-XXXI. On the search into the bidden sources of peculiar Circumstances and Number human action, and of just religious sentiment, that we were at a loss pensities and antipathies; and also where to begin ; or, having begun, a neutral state of the mind. Under where to finish our observations. this last head, we present the fol
We are disposed, however, to lowing extract. quote one further set of extracts, taken from the last class of Essays ; « On these grounds, I cannot but namely, those more immediately consider it possible for the mind 10 have addressed 10 the truly pious, under bad propensities and antipathies natutheir various relations and circum- rally, as well as to contract bad habits; stances. Our readers will have forming a distinct source of temptation.
and shall therefore speak of them as perceived a sequence of Essays Nor let it be supposed that this danger from the thirty-seventh to the forty. regards only some of the human race, first, on the important subject of an account of a particular perversity TEMPTATION. We here find our- of inclination that is evil in its tendency, selves in the centre of a very wide not existing in all. There is one case range of scriptural instruction and of constitutional depravity, which unexperimental religion, addressed to happily concerns every individual of those who may be regarded as feels the species; those whose bias to virtue ing most deeply interested in both well as those whose natural disposition
is the strongest and most uniform, as Much of this part of the work is is most remarkable for vice. "It will applicable to ordinary pulpit ex- readily be conjectured that I refer to hortation. For the benefit of our
the unhappy state of the mind toward clerical readers, we might proceed, the Deity, which discovers itself in us for example, to sermonize the thirty- all as soon as we are able to speak or seventh Essay as follows. Suppose think concerning him. The propriety the text to be, “ Lead us not into and use of RELIGION, and even its ne. temptation." The audience would cessity, are generally admitted among then be directed from this Essay to
the nations of mankind, whether ancient
or modern. Yet who can deny, that an edifying enumeration of “ the there is as general an unwillingness to sources of temptation.” Tempta- do justice to the infinite excellences tions will be found to arise, 1. From and merits of this all.glorious Being i things ;—2. From persons, that is, to acknowledge and improve the mani. our fellow-creatures,—the openly festations afforded of him in his works ; wicked; insidious writers; in ge- to inquire whether he has furnished any neral, irreligious performers on the other communications of himself; to stage of life* ; mere pretenders to which is owned to be a Divine revela
examine the contents of that book personal religion; and friends as well as enemies ;-3. From our.
tion, and to see what representation it
makes of our character and prospects selves : including generally, the as individuals respecting the world to bodily appetites and passions; pro- come-whether any alteration be neces
saryif there be, of what nature, and * We do not strongly notice the pan- by what means it is to be effected. It tomimical allusions with which this simile is too much the fashion to take it for is followed; because, in general, Mr. granted that attention to the temporal Burnside is tolerably exempt from those interests of our neighbonr, and to our offences against good taste, to which a own, is the principal, if not the only free play of the imagination often leads. duty required of us by the Divine Being, Further on, in Essay XLIV., a most and that external acts of religious worextraordinary piece of information in ship are alone essential to piety. Even yatural history is made the subject of these are reluctantly and sparingly peran entire note, pamely, That “ the formed by multitudes, if not disregardmonkey is doubtless void of reason, but ed altogether. Disposed as many may not more than the owl.” We should feel to question the truth of the assercertainly recommend, in a future edi. tions, that they are become unprofittion, such notes to be printed, as are able'- there is none that doeth good' the annotations in some Bibles, so low - their throat is an open sepulchre, down in the pa se as to be cut off in the and their feet swift to shed blood,' -as binding.
applicable to themselves, it will be dif,
ficult for them to deny, that respecting for those who have grown up into their original character, they did not life; namely, the practice of habiunderstand or seek after God,' and that tual industry. We all know from they had gone out of the way.' In vain it is alleged that in the foregoing mischief for idle hands to do;"
our infaucy who it is that “ finds description the individual making it represents his own experience to be that and therefore this preliminary antiof mankind at large. Not only the dote against satan's devices cannot profane, but those who treat religion be too strongly recommended. But with decorum, at least many of them, to descend to more particular meaplainly shew, by the manner in which
sures, 1. Observe the tendency of they entertain serious discourse on re
your constitutional bias or disinligious subjects, when introduced by clinations; 2. Call in the assistothers, and their own silence on those
ance even of inferior considerations; subjects, that they secretly' say unto
3. Review the examples of other God, Depart from us; we desire not the knowledge of thy ways.' There persons ; 4. Take the whole armour are, it is true, among people professing of God, consisting generally of modifferent modes of religion, not a few tives drawn from that ample dewho really love God; but almost all of pository, the word of God; but to them will acknowledge that they well be specially and profitably expandrecollect when they were differently ed into the various pieces of armour minded, and withont a dissenting voice mentioned by the Apostle, in his they will admit with shame and sorrow, Epistle to the Ephesians; 5. The that they have not yet ' attained, or are already perfect.'” Vol. II. pp. fioly principle; 6. Supernatural
possession and cultivation of a 87, 88.
means—such as the ministry of Our preacher, we may now sup. The direct interposition of God bim
good angels, and, most especially, pose to proceed, in a second dis- self. The conclusion of this adcourse, to one particular source of; mirable, though somewhat desulor rather agent in, temptation, and to speak “ on the temptations of tory, Essay, we are tempted to
transcribe. evil spirits." This follows in Essay XXXVIII.; but panting time would toil after us in vain, were we to
“ No one can duly reflect upon the attempt even the anatomy of this ample provision thus made by the Di. discussion, perhaps too metaphy. incentives to the neglect or violation of
vine Being for our security against the sical for the pulpit, but in itself, duty, and for our success against them, and to the general reader, bigbly without the strongest emotions of admiimportant and instructive.
ration, gratitude, and joy. Every preThe third sermon of our preacher tence for inactivity or dejection, on the would embrace, we should reasvu- ground of insuperable obstacles, is reably apprehend, what comes last moved. Final victory cannot be wantin Mr. Burnside's Series, namely, ing to any one, who is not wanting to " the means of overcoming temp- will fail at last ; but the failure will be
himself. Too many, it is to be feared, tation,” contained in bis forty-first imputable, not to the inefficacy of the Essay. Here the appropriate text
means, but to their not being adopted is suggested at the end of the or persevered in—not to the refusal of Essay; " Blessed is the man that Divine assistance, but to its never bavendureth temptation, &c.;" or, ing been sought. The withholdment of “ To him tbat overcometh, &c." it, for wise and good reasons, when Some preliminary observations of unsought, may in one case, though not admirable use occur respecting the in another, be a subject of lamentation, training up of children, so as far but not of censure : it debars the loser as possible to fortify them for the from cause to praise the Deity, but it
does not preserve him from a just cause after struggle against temptation, to blame himself.
From this topic, the preacher “ He who has profited in the course proceeds to one general direction of the spiritual combat by the different
means of resistance and success that tation ; for when he is tried, he shall
• preserved in Christ Jesus till Our preacher might be suffered he was called," he should remember, now appropriately to proceed to that it was God who' kept him from another important subject, groundevil, and withheld bim from simning ed on the sufficient assistance afagainst him. If, since his profession of forded us against temptation, namereligion, he has been perunitted to fall ly, “ the guilt of yielding to openly and scandalously, it was Divine
Here, as a text, grace that raised him up again, having
temptation." * restored his soul, and led him in the might be taken, “ Let no man say paths of righteousness. If he has hi. when he is tempted, I am tempted therto escaped the pollutions of the of God, &c.;" and the subject world through the knowledge of the would be, The removal of those Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, it is vain excuses which all are apt to God who hath held up his goings in make to themselves for yielding to his paths,' that his feet did not slip: temptation, such as, 1. Ignorance ; This comparative degree of spiritual 2. Its suddenness ; 3. General disprosperity, however, by no means implies that he has no failures to lament, tion or condition; 4, 5, and 6.
advantages and difficulties of situanor any lost ground to recover. The experience of every day teaches him Difficulties arising from the infinitethe contrary, as noticed by conscience, ly diversified forms of temptation; if not by his fellow-men. Since, like from the formidable power of evil wise, he will never be exempt from dan- spirits, as described in Scripture; ger on this side of the grave, interest, and from the present state of conflict as well as gratitude to his heavenly in the human mind itself. Many Protector, will urge him to continue observations of great depth, as well sober, watching unto prayer.' « These acts of caution, diligence,
as much liveliness, occur in the and self-denial, the occasion for which
course of these several discussions : is so incessant, and continues so long, but we have room neither for extend to excité disgust and weariness. tracting the passages we had markBut beside the intervals of ease and ed, nor for offering the comments enjoyment which mitigate the severity with which it might be fit to acof the Christian's warfare, the certain company them. We shall, there. and speedy prospect of ultimate success
fore, only observe, in general, that ought to prove a most powerful and the very discussion of some points never failing stimulus to patience and intimately connected with human activity. How great and necessary is
conduct, however ably and justly the object for which he thus bears arms! How infallible is the triumph
maintained, may be injurious to wbich he will shortly obtain ! How
certain minds, which have been glorious is the recompence he will re- accustomed to the single, practical, ceive! With what transport will he and conclusive appeal for all moral review the cares, the labours, and the and scriptural duty, “ The Lord sufferings, that have conducted him to hath spoken.” Such points we so happy an issue! Many whom he should of course be very far from recollects to have been long engaged in recommending for pulpit instrucsimilar danger and conflicts, are now
tion. entered into peace, into rest, and into
The concluding subject of adthe joy of the Lord! He will follow them quickly, if he holds fast the be. dress from our supposed preacher, ginning of bis confidence, and the re. would naturally fall in with Mr. joicing of the hope firm unto the end.' Burnside's thirty-vinth Essay," On • Blessed is the pian that endureth temp- the Uses of Templation." Our text for this would be, “Count it of an important and fundamental all joy when ye fall into divers question in the economy of morals, temptations." But here we must to which, for many reasons, we are beg leave to quit both our readers desirous of drawing the careful atand our author: having brought tention of our readers. them so well acquainted with each Dr. Chalmers opens the paper other, that we cannot believe any before us by giving a brief dereason can remain for the former scription of the constitution of the not pursuing the same train for Church of Scotland, which we shall themselves which we have com- extract, in order to put our readers menced for them. We recommend in possession of the facts of the them not to be content with our case. analysis, but to put themselves in possession of one of the most valu- of Scotland, it is provided that
, in each
“ By the constitntion of the Church able depositories of moral and reli- parish, there shall be, at least, one mi. gious research which for some time nister, whose office is to preach and we have had occasion to notice.
dispense the ordinances of Christianity, on the Sabbath, and to laborr in holy things among the people, through the
week; and elders, 'whose office it is to The Christian and Civic Economy assist at the dispensation of sacraments,
of Large Towns. By THOMAS to be the bearers of religious advice CHALMERS, D. D. Minister of and comfort among the families, aud, St. John's Church, Glasgow.-- in general, to act purely as ecclesiasNo. Vli. On Church Offices. tical labourers for the good of human Glasgow: Chalmers and Collins. souls; and, lastly, deacons, to whom it
belongs, not to preach the word, or ad1821. price 1s.
minister the sacraments, but to take
special care in administering to the neAlthough the direct object which cessities of the poor." p. 219. Dr. Chalmers has in view in the Seventh Number of his quarterly It appears, however, that in the papers is not an object of any high course of time this constitution bas interest with ourselves—inasmuch suffered a material change; by as the peculiar evils of which he which, in many instances, the complains in the present consti- office of deacon has been wholly tution of the Church of Scotland absorbed in that of elder. The do not exist in the English Church effect of this change is, that the -We are induced to confine our elder, now, in many instances, exattention exclusively to this paper ercises the joint function of elder on the present occasion by several and deacon -as elder, assisting the reasons. It will be sufficient, how- minister in his clerical duties, and, ever, to burden our readers with as deacon, dispensing those funds only one of them; namely, the great which have been raised, either by extent of the subject treated of in benevolent or compulsatory contri. the Eighth of these papers. Whilst butions, for the benefit of the poor. we could not, on any account, con- The elder, therefore, now goes sent to cripple our examination of forth, not as the mere assistant of the important topic to which we the incumbent, dividing with him shall next come, namely, “Sabbath- his spiritual labours, but also, and schools,” we were unwilling allo- chiefly, in a capacity analogous to gether to sacrifice the paper now that of overseer of the poor of the before us to that topic; and a due parish, sitting in judgment on the attention to both was next to im- claims of applicants for relief, and practicable in one Number. It will assigning to each his portion of the be found, also, that the present parochial charities. Essay involves in it the discussion
It is against this union of spi