« AnteriorContinuar »
through the grace of Christ, I do live, || an aged Scotch minister, whose con" and shall live forever. When I camegregation consisted, principally, of
to this blessed family, I then saw, and English merchants. He was there very never before, the power of godliness useful, and greatly esteemed. At the
in its lively vigor and efficacy."-expiration of two years, he was called Pre Whilė Mr. Hooker was engaged in the to Rotterdam, where he was united in.
employment of an instructor, a peti- | the ministry with his great and affection was presented to the bishop of tionate friend, Dr. Ames, who had London (bishop Laud), by a number just returned from his professorship at of conforming ministers of the neigh- the Franequer University. In this boring towns, no less than forty-seven, connection, he assisted Dr. Ames in
praying that Mr. Hooker might be per-composing some of his best literary & mitted to continue in the ministry at works. Dr. Ames observed of him, - Chelmsford. They state in their pe" Though he had been acquainted
tition, " That they esteem and know with many scholars of divers nations,
the said Mr. Thomas Hooker to be, yet he never met with Mr. Hooker's le for doctrine, orthodox; for life and equal, either for preaching or dispu
conversation, honest; for disposition, ting.' or
peaceable; and in no wise turbulent On a full acquaintance with the di
or factious.” But he was a puritan, state of the churches in Holland, Mr. and his ministry could not be suffered. Hooker became satisfied that the pu
The popularity and influence of his rity of doctrine and discipline in the pole school were such as to furnish an ad- visible church of Christ, which he and * ditional motive to attempt to extin- his fellow laborers had long hoped to
guish this brilliant light. Before he see, was not reasonably to be expectI had been two years in his retreat, heed in that country. Of this persuasion, no was summoned before an ecclesiasti- || Mr. Hooker informed Mr. Cotton in
cal court at Chelmsford, about the their correspondence, upon which, year 1630, and, for non-conformity in finding no prospect of a relaxation of
his ministry, he was silenced, and laid ecclesiastical rigor in their own counmen under bonds in the penal sum of fifty try, they resolved to unite with a num1 pounds, to appear as a public offenderber of their friends in Essex, who were
before the court of High Commission.preparing for an emigration to AmeriIt By the advice and earnest solicitation ca. Mr. Hooker returned to England, nie of his friends,who cheerfully advanced but secretly, for fear of his enemies, ubice the sum, he forfeited the bonds. But from whence he soon took his last law he could no longer appear in public farewell of his native land. He and bs with safety. A secure retreat having|| Mr. Cotton were both concealed pre
been provided for his family, by ihevious to their departure, to avoid the generous liberality of the Earl of War-vigilance of pursuers. They were
wick, he sought a private passage, and obliged to enter on board their ship in 134 immediately went over to Holland. -||disguise, and were not known to the hoi As it was known that he was sought crew till they had been some days at
for by the pursuivants, a friend obser-sea. They then assumed their proper i ved to him, “Sir, what if the wind character, and performed the public in should not be fair, when you come to services of religion, daily and on the 10 the vessel ?" He replied, Brother, let Sabbath, during the voyage.
us leave that with Him who keeps the On the fourth of September, 1633,
wind in the hollow of his hand." Se-Mr. Hooker, Mr. Cotton, Mr. Stone, "I veral circumstances, singularly favor- Mr. Haynes, with a great number of reis able attended his voyage.
olher passengers, arrived safely at Bos. This
Mr. Hooker resided in Holland a-ton, to the great joy of the colony. #bout three years. The two former, A number of Mr. Hooker's friends
he lived at Delft, as a colleague with || came over the year before, and settled
at Newtown, under the expectation of -in the care of his church and peohis coming, and to prepare for his ac- plemin laying the foundations of the commodation. Great was the joy of permanent religious institutions of the the meeting occasioned by his arrival. colony-in providing for the peace Having wandered without a home, in and security of this feeble people in an journeyings often, in perils of waters, unlimited wilderness of savages-in in perils by his own countrymen, in pe- securing the lasting prosperity of a ririls in the sea, in perils among false sing state, were greater than can now brethren, reviled, way laid and pursued be conceived. Though he stood not as a public criminal, now to meet his alone, yet upon him, more than any friends in a land of peace, with all the other person, devolved this mighty privileges of the pure ordinances of care. By his vigilance and labors, Christ, afforded a precious foretaste of the churches in this colony continued the rest which remaineth for his peo- in great unity and quietness, while ple. While his people received himn those in the Massachusetts were agitawith open arms, Mr. Hooker assured ted, for a season, with alarming conthem, “ Now I live, if you stand fast in vulsions. He was called to attend the Lord.” In October, a church was the Synod which sat at Cambridge in organized at Newtown with great so- August 1637, which had such a happy lemnity, and Mr. Hooker was set apart effect in suppressing the Antinomian as their pastor, and Mr. Stone as his errors, and restoring peace to the assistant.
churches. Mr. Hooker was the modeMr. Hooker's migration to America rator of the Synod, with Mr. Bulkley, soon induced many of his acquaintance of Concord, for his assistant. His perto follow him to the wilderness. The fect acquaintance with all the subjects settlement at Newtown became so of discussion, his irresistible powers of much increased that it was thought ex- reasoning, his meek and honest zeal pedient to remove to Connecticut river. for truth, gave commanding in · The people made application to the fluence in the decisions, which became general court for liberty to remove, in the foundation of the doctrinal constithe latter part of the year 1634. Mr. tution of our churches. Hooker was their agent. Their re Biography of Mr. H. to be continued. quest was denied, under a persuasion that their removal would weaken the colony, and that the loss of such an (Concluded from page 281.) eminent light of the churches as their To prepare the way for the Messipastor, would be a severe judgment of|ah, John was regularly to introduce heaven. The year following, however, him, by baptism, into his sacerdotal or the colony continuing to receive fresh priestly office. accessions of planters from England, Christ was the great antitype of the the petition of the Newtown people Aaronic priesthood. The sacrifices, was granted, and, late in the season, offered by the priests, according to the the removal commenced. In June Levitical law, and especially the atone1636, Mr. Hooker, with his family and ment, or propitiation, made once eveabout one hundred others, took their ry year, by the high priest, had typical journey through the wilderness, and reference to him, the priest and the saafter a fatiguing march of about twelve crifice, who was to offer himself, once days, they arrived at Hartford. The in the end of the world, without spot most of the congregation, some by to God. Though ordained a priest forwater and some by land, arrived be-eyer, after the order of Melchizedeck, fore the close of the year. The church | yet as he was to be “a mlnister of the was not re-organized.
circumcision, for the truth of God to The labors of Mr. Hooker, in the confirm the promises made unto the necessary provision for his own family || fathers;" as he was born, and was to
MINISTRY OF JOHN THE BAPTIST..
ned perform his ministry, under the Levit-thirty years old, that the priests, under
ical law ; it was clearly necessary, the Levitical law, were to enter upon
that he should conform to the regula- their ministry : so it was not until he es tions and submit to the ordinances of was about thirty years old, that the that dispensation.
Messiah was consecrated by John to But under the Levitical law, the the sacred office. And as Aaron, at priests, when introduced into their of the time of his inauguration, after he fice, were to be washed, or baptised, was baptised with water, was publicly with water. “ And Moses' said unto anointed with the holy anointing oil : the congregation, this is the thing, so Christ, the great apostle and high which the Lord commanded to be done. Ipriest of our profession, immediately And Moses brought Aaron and his sons, upon his baptism, received, in the most and washed, or baptised them with public manner, an unction of the Howater.” As Aaron and his sons, at the ly One, of which the anointing with oil time of their inauguration, were wash- was an appointed emblem and prefig. ed, or baptised with water ; so it be-uration. Thus regularly and solemnhoved Christ, their great antitype, and ly was he introduced into his august
the high priest of our salvation, to sub- and sacred office, as high priest forevah
mit to the same inaugural rite. This er over the whole house of God.,
John, to prepare the way for the MesJohn had a special commission tosiah, was distinctly to point him out prepare the way for the Messiah, or to to the people, and bear witness to him, do all which was necessary to be done, that he was indeed the true Messiah. in order to his regular introduction in The proof of the Messiahship of Jeto his high and august office. Accor-sus is various indeed, and abundant. dingly, when Christ said to John, “ suf- | The numerous prophecies in him fulfer it to be so now, for thus it becom-||filled, the circumstances which attendeth us to fulfil all righteousness;" ased his birth, and his entrance upon bis soon as John was made to understand public ministry, the miraculous works that, though the Messiah could not be which he wrought, the doctrine which a proper subject for the baptism of re-lhe preached, the purity of his life, and pentance, it was, nevertheless, neces-the manner and circumstances of his sary, that he should be inducted into death and resurrection, all unite to prothe high priesthood by the washing of|claim him both Lord and Christ. Nevwater, as well as by an holy anointing, ertheless, it seemed good to Infinite he immediately complied, and perfor- Wisdom to appoint one, whose duty it med the sacred service. Afterwards should be, formally to announce the John testified of Christ, and said, “ this Messiah, at the time of his inanifestais he of whom I said, after me cometh tion to Israel, and bear witness to him. a man, who is preferred before me, for This service, therefore, as well as the he was before me. And I knew him other parts of his duty as the harbinnot; but that he should be made man-ger of the Lord, it behoved John to ifest to Israel," or might be regularly perform. Accordingly, soon after his introduced into his public office," there-public inauguration, “John seeth Jefore am I come baptising with water." || sus coming unto him, and saith, Be. One principal purpose, then, for which hold the Lamb of God, which taketh John was sent, and for which he was away the sins of the world. And John commissioned to baptise, was, that he bare record, saying, I saw the Spirit might solemnly consecrate the Messi-descending from heaven like a dove,
ah to his priestly office, and thus pre- and it abode upon him. And I knew di pare the way for his regular entrance him not, but he that sent me to bapupon his public ministry.
tise with water, the same said unto me, As it was not until they were about upon whom thou shalt see the Spi:
descending, and remaining on him, John was sent to prepare the way the same is he which baptiseth with for Christ and his new dispensation. the Holy Ghost. And I saw and bear He proclaimed, that the kingdom of record that this is the son of God." heaven, or the evangelical reign of
Such were the important purposes Christ, was near at hand: not that it of John's mission ; and thus did he was already come. He was a prophprepare the way for the Messiah. et and a minister under the Mosaic
A few obvious deductions will now law, and during bis whole ministry all be suggested.
the institutions of that law remained 1. The Christian Church is but the in full force. Even Christ himself continuation of the Jewish, under an was a minister of the circumcision for other dispensation.
the truth of God, to confirm the prom. At the coming of the Messiah, theises made unto the fathers. Christ ancient church of God, was, indeed,|| himself observed, and enjoined upon terribly shaken, and by far the great others to observe, the sacred rites of er part of its nominal members were the ancient dispensation. It was not utterly cast off. The church, however until the close of the last prophetic was not abolished. The Lord still re-week, that he caused the sacrifice and membered his covenant, and, of the the oblation to cease : and blotting out descendants of Abraham his friend,still the hand writing of ordinances, took it reserved to himself a people and a away, and nailed it to his cross. And church. And what is particularly to why, indeed, should the sacrifice and be noted in this connexion is, that a the oblation cease, before the great very principal purpose of John's mis- || sacrifice and oblation, to which they sion and ministry was to promote a re- || had typical respect, were actually formation in the Jewish church, and made? As it was at the time of his to prepare the sound part of it to abide | death upon the cross, when the veil of without dissolution, the tremendous the temple was rent in twain from the shock, which was about to take place. top to the bottom, that the Messiah He was sent to turn many of the child caused the sacrifice and the oblation to dren of Israel unto the Lord their God. cease, and took away the hand writing, He was sent in the spirit and power of the Mosaic law; so when he ascenof Elias to turn the hearts of the fa- | ded up on high, leading captivity cap: thers unto the children, and the disobe- tive, he received gifts for men, even dient unto the wisdom of the just; and for the rebellious, that the Lord God thus to make ready a people prepared might dwell among them. It was then, for the Lord. He was sent as a proph-when he had by himself purged our et of the Highest, by his ministry and | sins, that he sat down on the right baptism, to confirm the covenant with hand of the Majesty on high, and his many, and thus to prepare the way evangelical reign, or the kingdom of for a new dispensation, and for the ac- || heaven, commenced. It was then that cession to the church of the Gentile the Christian dispensation was introdunations. Such was the faithfulness of ced.* God, and so special were the means, which he was pleased to employ, to * The beginning of the gospel of Jesus Christ preserve his church from dissolution, the Son of God. Mark 1. 1. We have here no in the day when the heavens and the dispensation, but are merely notified of the be
information of the beginning of the gospel earth were shaken, and to prepare her ginning of the gospel history. The beginning, to arise and shine, that the Gentiles or here begins, the gospel, or evangelical higmight come to her light, and kings totory, of Jesus Christ. The evangelist does the brightness of her rising.
not inform us, as some have supposed, that 2. The Christian dispensation did
John's ministry was the beginning of the gos
pel dispensation ; but merely informs us that not commence, till after the resurrec- he was about to write the gospel history. tion of Christ.
The law and the prophets were until John ;
3. The baptism of John was an in- 4. As it respects baptism particularstitution entirely distinct from Chris- ly, the baptism of Christ, by his barbintian baptism.
ger John, is not to be considered as an As John's ministry was under the example for his followers. Mosaic law, his baptism belonged also Had Christ's baptism by John been to the same dispensation. Both his intended as an example to his follow
ministry and his baptism were antece- || ers, surely he would not have waited EST
dent, and preparatory, to the Messiah's until all the people were baptised, beevangelical reign. His baptism was fore he came to receive baptism. an extraordinary seal, by which, at an Christ was made under the law, and extraordinary crisis, the gracious cov- was subject to all the tinstitutions in
enant of God was confirmed with ma- that dispensation. In conformity to the of a ny; and by which the ancient dispen-law, he was circumcised at eight days du
sation was consummated, and the way old ; in conformity to the law he was PR
for the introduction of the new dispen-presented to the Lord in the temple; in sation was prepared. Hence, when conformity to the law he attended the the evangelical dispensation commen- solemn feats at Jerusalem ; and in conced, the preparatory institution ceas-formity to the law, he was baptized by ed; and those, who had received John. His being baptized, therefore, is John's baptism, were afterwards bapti- no more an example for his followers, sed in the name of the Lord Jesus.* than his being circumcised, or his subsince that time the kingdom of God is preach-mitting to any other ordinance of the ed, and every man presseth into it. And it is ea-|| ancient economy. Nay, his baptisma is,
sier for heaven and earth to pass than one least of all his legal observances, to be h sittle of the law to fail. Luke xvi. 16, 17.-
Ye had the law and the prophets until the regarded as an example for his people. in coming of John, since whose time the king
The Baptism of Christ was an inaudom of God is announced, and every occu- gural rite, by which he was publicly ri
pant entereth it by force. But sooner shall and regularly introduced into his high heaven and earth perish, than one tittle of|and sacred office, as the great Prophet the law shall fail." Dr. Campbell's translations.
and High Priest of our holy profession. Before the coming of John, the Jews had But are we to follow Christ in this par
all their knowledge of Christ and his king-ticular?. Are we to be baptised, as he hogy dom from the Old Testament Scriptures, com was, in order to a regular induction in
monly in Christ's time, called the law and the to the high priesthood over the house Prophets. But when John came, the pkingdom of God, which, until then, had been rep- of God! Is there not something shock
resented as distant, was proclaimed as being ing, is there not something impious, in the
at hand ; and all, who gave beed to the proc. the very thought! Might we not as in lamation, felt it to be of the utmost impor-|| well think of dying upon the cross, as
tance to be in immediate readiness for the awful and gracious dispensation. Yet it he did, to make atonement for a guilty was important to be understood, that not world ? By his baptism he was introone tittle of the law was to fail; not the least || duced into his high office, and by his part of the Old Testament Scriptures was death he made the atonement for to be made void, or of none effect. It is no part of the design of this passage, any more
which he was thus introduced; and than of the foregoing, to inform when the there is no more reason why we should gospel dispensation commenced.
follow him in the one than in the * Acts xix. 5. Christ baptised none : and other. the disciples of Christ had no special com The baptism of Christ was of an immission from him to baptise, until after his resurrection. Like John, they preached that port very different from that of the the kingdom was at hand; and, like him, they || baptism, which he afterwards institubaptised in confirmation of the ancient cove-veral important institutions under David and nant of God. But it .was not until after the Ezra ; yet all those institutions were under resurrection of their Lord that they baptised the Mosaic dispensation. As those instituunder his special commission.
tions were added by divine authority, so af. If there was no provision in the Mosaic law terwards the baptism of John was added, by
for Jubu's baptism, so there was none for se-ll the same authority, and for a special purpose. w