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suspicions of envy, or sought to close and intense studies, yet be raise himself as many do, by en- was a good Belles Lettres scholar. deavouring to lessen others. Dr. His style was correct and pure ; Schureman was above such con- and be made such progress in the duct. He cherished a spirit of official branches of bis ProfessorChristian charity. He respected ship, that his lectures upon Ecmerit. He loved all good men. clesiastical History and Pastoral
This excellent man was hon- Theology were highly acceptable oured in no ordinary degree with and very useful. The sqavity of the confidence of his brethren in his manners, and the propriety of the ministry. A sufficient proof his conduct, endeared him to the of this is found in his appointment students, and recommended him to the station of a public teacher to the respect and affection of all in the Theological College. The who knew him. He was growing cándour of his mind was such, his into extensive usefulness, and had moderation, firmness, and talents he lived, and progressed as he were so well known to them all, began, would have become a that there was not one perhaps treasure to the Theological Colwhose counsel in cases of dif- lege.” ficulty and importance was more A short account of the closing desired or sought. He was punc- scene of his life will conclude tual in his attendance on the se- these memoirs. veral judicatories of the Church, During the progress of the disand took an active part in their ease wbich bas terminated in his deliberations; and, by inspeeting death, Dr. Schureman spoke but the records of their proceedings little. The disease proceeded for many years past, the name of witb rapid and irresistible vioSchureman will be found to hold lence, baffling the skill of media prominent place--a fact which cine and the assiduities of affecmust be viewed as no inconsider- tion, and for the most part of the able evidence of the respect en- time was attended with a lethargy tertained for his judgment, piety, which rendered it difficult and and fidelity. Although free from a irksome for bim to converse. He spirit of bigotry or sectarism, yet however retained the use of his he loved the Church to which he reason, and on the last afternoon, belonged, and by his prayers, his when the stupor had abated, and counsel, his influence, and bis ef- just before he obtained release, forts, endeavoured to promote and he attempted to converse with his advance her interests.
mother, but his speech failed, His character is well drawn in and what he said could not be una few words, by the venerable derstood. His afflicted wife was Professor Livingston, in a letter too much overcome to witness his to the writer of this article. departure, but his parents, who
“ You knew him. He was were in the room, he took affecmild and pleasant ; discerning and tionately by the hand as soon as he tirm; steadfast, but not obstinate ; found himself to be in the agonies zealous, but not assuming. The of dissolution. Then waving his frequent bemorrhage of his lungs hand, and pointing to the light of and the habitual weakness of his the upper part of the window, HE constitution, prevented him from LAUGHED ALOUD, thus expressiаg
his joy that his spirit was about ther-that the mantle of the father to be disengaged from his earthly may descend upon the son--and frame, and to wing its flight to the that, like him, he may shine as a regions of light and bliss, just like bright ornament in the Church of a bird, that tired of its cage, claps God. its wings when about to be set at
αγαπη. . liberty. With“ one eye on death and one full fixed on hea. ven,” he seemed to say, in the moment of expiring, Now that JUDGE OF RELIGIOUS God has given me the wings of a VERSY. dove, I will fly away and be at rest. The following lines of Dod
(Continued from p. 158.] dridge admirably describe this closing scene.
In additional confirmation of the
principle maintained in this dis" When death o'er nature shall prevail, sertation, let us examine and de
And all the powers of language fail, Joy through my swimming eyes' shall fine the province of human reason, break,
ecclesiastical authority, and the And mean the thanks I cannot speak." writings of the ancients, in matters
of religion. He is gone, and to him the
1. It is necessary to define the language of another poet may be province of human reason.
term often used in an improper « Sunk though he be
sense, and such use of it is danSo sinks the day-star in the ocean bed,
gerous. It presents to the mind And yet anon repairs his drooping head, an imaginary object, in the purAnd tricks his beams, and with new suit of which, man is bewildered Flames in the forehead of the morning and lost. By human reason somesky.”
times is understood a certain sys
tem of doctrines for the direction Schureman! Sweet repose to of our belief and practice, distinct thy ashes, and imperishable ho- from Divide revelation. This is nour to thy memory. Thou art a system, however, which has no removed beyond the reach of sor- existence, which no man can derow, pain, and sin. Heaven is thy fine, and the belief of which, as home, which, after many conflicts, it is a nonentity, must be producand toils, and pains, thou hast tive of mischievous consequences. happily gained; and we would Human reason is nothing but not, if we could, call thee back to the faculty of reasoning and the earth. But the full heart will erertions of that faculty. It is not ever cherish with mournfol plea- the rule of direction, but the sure the remembrance of the nu- power of ascertaining and applymerous and amiable virtues which ing the rule. adorned thy character.
The faculty of reasoning in Since the decease of the Doc-relation to the sacred Scriptures, tor, bis widow has become the is as the eye to the light.' The mother of a son. It is devoutly organ of vision is not the princi. wished that the child may be ple of illumination ; but is necesspared to be a solace to his mo-l sary to perceive the light of
heaven, and the various objects ing to godliness were false. Thus which are illumioated by its rays. “ the natural man receiveth not Considered as the gift of God, this the things of the Spirit of God.” faculty is an inestimable privilege, Regenerating grace is requisite, -a spark of intelligence communi- in order that human reason may cated to the creature, from the apply the rule of revelation. eternal principle of knowledge. It is the same God, who has · It is however limited in its exer- given us the power of reasoning tions to a narrow sphere. Inca- and the oracles of inspiration. pable in its best possible condi- The latter gift is not intended to tion of embracing every object, destroy the former, or to superthe vision becomes dim beyond a sede its exercise. On the concertain distance, and in our pre- trary, it increases our information sent fallen state, it necessarily and corrects our errors. If the receives erroneous views of the bodily eye is indebted to another most important concerns of life. sense for its aid in determining
It cannot indeed be denied, the figure, the magnitude, and the that man in the exercise of his distance of visible objects, how power of reasoning, has made much more is the human undergreat progress in natural science, standing indebled to divine aid and settled many controversies for assisting our reasoning faculty respecting it by the iocreasing in ascertaining priociples, the light of repeated experiments. knowledge of which is essential But we cannot conclusively argue to our improvement and happifrom bis success in science, to his ness. progress in the knowledge of re
The exercise of reason, religion by the same means. The specting the doctrines of revelamethod of salvation through a tion is necessary. God addresses crucified Saviour, as it originates man as a rational creature, and in the good pleasure of God's commands him to employ the will, is made known only by di- talent which he has received. vine revelation, and the special Its province is to contemplate influence of divine grace is indis- the claim of the Scriptures to inpensably necessary to the saving spiration, to receive them as the knowledge of it, even when re- word of God, and to examine their vealed. Natural science invites contents. The question which us to its study, without regard to the Christian has to determine by virtue or vice. It imposes no the use of bis reason ia perusing restraint on criminal affections. the Scriptures, is not whether It presents no barrier to sensual this doctrine was known indegratifications. But religion is at pendently of the Bible; whether war with every lust. It gives in- it was discoverable by reason ; dulgence to no kind of vice. or whether wben revealed it is There is a connexion between comprehensible by the human doctrinal and practical truths. If mind; but, the question is merewe receive this doctrine, we ly, whether this is a doctrine of must, in order to be consistent, the Scriptures. The ground of practise this duty. Man, unwill- our belief, in any part of the ing to practise holiness, wishes Bible, is not its reasonableness, hat the doctrine which is accord- I but its being sanctioned with
“ Thus saith the Lord.” The The Church does not give most sublime mystery of the authority to the Scriptures, but Christian religion has as great a derives it from them. All eccleclaim upon my beliel, as that two siastical acts are to be tried by and two are four. No perception the doctrines of revelation as the of my soul is more clear and cer- supreme standard. From these tain than that God is incapable of divine oracles all Christians are falsehood.
to learn, whatever station they It is also tbe daty of man, prac- fill, how to behave themselves in tically to apply the maxims of the house of God, which is the inspiration. The inferences which Church of the living God, the pillar are legitimately drawn from the and ground of truth. The pillar, Scriptures are of divine authori- upon which, in allusion to the ty. God will not fail to recognize practice of the Romans, in pubevery sentiment which is con- lishing their laws, the statutes of tained in his words. It would, God are inscribed for the inforindeed, be in some cases unfair mation of his subjects ; and the and unmerciful to charge fallible ground upon which the summary man with believing every senti. exhibition, made of Scripture ment which might justly be in- truth, rests. The confession of ferred from his expressions ; but our faith in the articles of relithe omniscient God has revealed gion receives authority, in a minothing the full force of which he nisterial and subordinate sense, did not comprehend.
from ecclesiastical acts ; but the The Redeemer has set us an Church itself receives authority example of argument by infer- for all its righteous deeds from ence, in his reply to the Sad- the sacred Scriptures, built upon ducees ; and the inspired apostles the foundation of the apostles and followed the example of their prophets, Jesus Christ himself being Master in their disputes with the the chief corner-stone. Jews. Christians, therefore, while The officers and judicatories they submit implicitly to the su- of the Church have no power to preme authority of divine reve- increase or diminish the number Jation, must use the reasoning of ordinances specified in divine faculty in deducing consequences revelation ; but must regulate the for the direction of life from its order and seasons in wbich these established axioms.
ordinances are to be dispensed. 2. It is proper to setile the Whatsoever is prohibited in God's province of ecclesiastical autho-word cannot be authorized by the rity.
church ; but a duty enjoined reThere are
some principles quires the arrangement of all which are common to the Church things necessary to a compliance with other societies of rational with it. No ecclesiastical act can creatures. The exercise of the render any part of time holy, as social affections; the preserva- the Lord hath sanctified the Sabtion of order; the establishment bath ; but special acts of devotion of subordinate rules of conduct; required by God, impose upon and the right of the Body to con- the Church a necessity of specifytrol any member in agreeableness ing the times for attending to to the supreme law.
them. The Lord's day demands
of us the suitable exercises of influenced by authority. It is religious worship; in other cases, pleasing to be in the company of the exercises of devotion demand those whom we esteem. Reverthe time necessary for their
for characters produces per observance. Setting his peo- respect for their opinions; and ple at liberty from the doctrines this cannot fail to influence the and commandments of men, Christ judgment. Many men, it is also commands them to stand fast in to be observed, are unwilling to that liberty against the encroach- take the trouble of thinking ments of ecclesiastic domination. closely ; and are therefore satisAbout such things, however, as fied that others should think for God hath left undetermined, there them wbile they practise upon is no need of the Christian's con- the principle of implicit faith. tending. Whether a minister of The religious opinions, however, the Gospel should preach twice which are founded upon human or three times on the Lord's day ; authority are not worthy of the whether he should begin public Christian. His faith rests upon worship by prayer, by singing, the Gospel of Christ, which is or by exhortation; whether he the power of God and the wisdom should sing once or twice before of God. sermon. are questions about The province, which the work's which there should be no con- of the fathers should occupy in tention; but being settled by the matters of religion, can be very Church for the sake of barmony easily defined. Writings which and order, all its members should come down to us well authentisubmit. It is the will of God cated, which are evidently genuthat every thing should be done ine, which have been composed * decently and in order," in by persons of discrimination and agreeableness to what he has re- veracity, may undoubtedly be quired in his word.
admitted as witnesses of matter 3. The writings of the ancients of fact. Such testimony will, of nay be perused with advantage course, decide what were the in order to assist us in under- opinions of certain men, and standing more clearly some pas- what were the customs of the sages of Scripture. Allusions are Church at a certain time. But made frequently in the Bible to these opinions, and these custhe prevailing usages of the toms, are still to be tried by the periods in which its various parts Scriptures. If upon examination were written ; and an accurate they are found to be conformable acquaintance with the languages to the will of the supreme Lawand customs of the ancients are giver, the Christian will rejoice. exceedingly serviceable in ascer. He is always pleased at finding taining the meaning of such pas- the Church abiding by the law sages of revelation as refer to and the testimony. But if they them.
are found to be otherwise, he is No uninspired writings are, at no loss whether to follow the however, of any authority in de- writings of the ancients, or the termining what is the doctrine Scriptures of inspiration. Ali and order of God's Church. It is Christ's disciples will say to the indeed very natural to man to be writers of antiquity, as Peter and