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affording a lively representation of that beautiful and sublime description of Night, in Milton's Paradise Lost, book 4 :

- Now glow'd the firmament .
With living sapphiros. Hesperus, who led
The starrý bost, rode brightest, till the Moody.
Rising in clouded majesty, at length,
Apparent qucen, unveil'd her peerless light "

And o'er the dark ber silver mantle threw!"" The tombs and grassy hillocks, those mementus of mortality, eminded me of the shortness and certain 'end of our fleeting lives! Whilst looking over them, I discerned graves of all dimensions ; from the infant, who had but just come into this lower state and immediately retired, as if displeased with its appearance, to the full-grown man, who had pursued his weary way through this vale of woe for many years. Here I could not help feeling the truth of that declaration, That Death pays no respuct either to age, person, or circumstances. - Here the following verses of Dr. Walts came across my mind; and, as I repeated them, i almost fancied I could bear them reverberating from tomb to tomb:

“ Hark! from the tombs a doleful sound !

My ears attend the cry!
Yo living men, come view the ground

Where you must shortly lie !
Princes, this clay must be your bed,

lo spite of all your tow'rs!
The tall, the wise, the rev'rend head,

Must lie as low as ours!” Passing up one of the paths, my attention was suddenly attracted by a newly-opened grave. The unexpected appearance cast a momentary dread over my mind, and my blood involun. tarily ran chill over my body. I enquired of myself, Whence arises this sudden gloom, which depresses my spirits, and steals over my frame? Why do I cast my eyes so cautiously around, as if apprehensive of meeting some danger ? Here all is peace and quietness ! -- the voice of dissention is not heard!--even the piercing cries of pain and misery are all hushed !-- {he boisterous rage of anger, the mournful sighs of distress, and the loud, unmeaning laughter of the gay and thoughtless, are alike silenced !

Here nothing is to be feared !-the inhabitants of these silent regions are all at rest! Why then should I not suppress all uneasy emotions, and carefully endeavour to improve the usc-: ful lesson which may be learned here? Before me I perceive, scattered up and down, fragments of bones! This hideous, unseemly skull, which now affrights with its ghastly appearance, was once the seat of the brain, and endowed with understanding and season! – these unsightly hollows were once supplied with sparkling eyesl-rows of tecth were once arranged in these mouldering, vacant jaws !-and, perhaps, the whole, during life, excited the admiration of strangers and the affection of friends, by its

pleasing and endearing form! Here I see the bone of an arm, which was once filled with marrow, strong with joints, united with supple sinews, clothed with flesh, and warm with vital blood ! I cannot help indulging the fond idea, that perhaps it has often, Very often been lifted up in prevailing prayer at a throne of grace ! - These feet, which have for many years borne their ewnit, are now cast aside, helpless and neglected! let me hope they have trodden the path of life, have pursued the way of God's statutes, and have oft time led the way to the sanctuary of the honse of the Lord! Whilst I am looking on this open grave, the receptacle of all living, -- this lonely place, which, at one time or other (perhaps shortly) is to be my long home, how does the deceitful greatness of the world dwindle into no. thing, and all the world calls good or great! -- and as I here behold the end of all things, may it instruct me to rid my mind of the shackles of worldly affections, and be more heavenly. minded! May I he wise to consider my latter end, to redeem the precious passing moments of my time, before the night of death cometh, when no man can work! --- for what is our life? It is even as a vapour, which appeareth but for a few moments, and then vanisheth away for ever; and the place which now knows us, will shortly know us no more for ever.

AN IMPORTANT QUESTION ANSWERED. What is the reason that, although there is in man, in his natural

state, a routed arersion from gospel-truths, yet those places of worsip x'here the gospel is preached, both in and out of the Establishment, are better attended than others?

Ir is a melancholy assertion with which the statement of the question begins; but it is an assertion as true as it is awful:

There is in man, while unconverted, a rooted aversion from gospel-truth.' The carnal heart hates God, and all Hs pride vises against the gospel-method of mercy, - against confessing sin in deep humiliation, and especially against being under obligations to another's righteousness for acceptance with God. The truths of the gospel are therefore shut out from the heart with pertinacious care; and, in general, the preaching of them becomes the butt, - against which litile wits try their ironies. · It might naturally be expectelt, that such sensations should make men late the places where gospel-truths arc promulgated;

and we do in fact find it so. Pride and prejudice, worldly-mind. :: ciness and sensuality, all oppose attendance on the house of

Gou, and exert themselves, with redoubled ardour,ito vilify the doctrines, the men who preach them, and the people who Priess therr. "All the religion of such men consists in their balred to truth.

Yet it is a fact allowed, that wherever the gospel is truly and faithfully preached, the attendance is large. How can this circumstance be accounted for :

. Perhaps the phenomenon might in part be explained, by rocollecting that the number of places where truth is exhibited is very small, in proportion to the whole number of places of worship; those, therefore, who are at all attached to the gospel, hare but few places at which they can attend, and those few places must of course appear to be crowded. It must, however, be allowed, that of the multitudes who attend on the gospel, great numbers do not know its nature por feel its power ; -- but then the attendance given by many of these may be placed to the account of babit and connections. Were they entirely at liberty to enjoy what they best loved, they would attend at other places, or perhaps spend the whole day in carnal pleaşures : but when we have again made deduction for these, there will yet remain a great proportion who do actually attend upon the gospel, and who seem to be attracted hy ili wbo, being still unconverted, and possessing all the native hatred of religion which a carnal state implies, it remains for us to account for a conduct which seems to be so directly opposite to their feelings.

1. Perhaps the first principle which presents itself, in order to explain this seeming contradiction, is curiosity. The appeare' ance of the gospel in a village is a new circumstance; it appears too in a new place, some barn or cottage; and in a new maoner, without the pomp of clerical dress, rites, and ceremqhies. Curiosity is awakened, therefore, to know what will these people say ? - why do they come here ?mmor, if it appears in the parish. church, by a new rector or curate, the news soon spreads, and gospel-truths being considerably different from what they had been accustomed to hear, the desire to know something wherein. the difference lies is strong. If once a crowd collect, curiosity: is still more strongly aroused to know what it is makes so many people go to such a place; -- what it is that makes Mr. ------ So very popular; and the crowd is encreased by the mere desire of enquiring why it is collected!

%. Another principle, very operative in such a case, is fashion. - Many persons are guided in the choice of a minister, er place of attendance, by the multitude. They follow the stream indolently, and go as others go, because they do not take the trouble to resist; or they suppose there must be some peculiar excel-, lency, where they see such peculiar attraction. As when a shop is reported to be su full of customers that you cannot get served, many will go there, concluding that it must be for the excellence of the commodities, though they are not able themselves to judge. Nay, as a crowd implies excellency, in the judgment of some persons, so to be one of that crowd is, in their opinion, to share the general reputation; and he stands a degree higher in his own estimation, and bopes he shall in his neighbour's account, who

can say, "I go there : you cannot think how we are crowded : ours is the fullest place by far!'

3. May we state, as tending to fill places where the gospel is preached, that coorldly interest is a motive which operates very powerfully. Many Attend on the Lord's Day with the view of raising a reputation, which may assist them in their secular concerns; thus making the Saviour and his grace a step-ladder, by which to reach at earthly emolument. They wish to be thought religious, they see this as the easiest way, and with diligence attend at Wisdom's gates, that they may have the credit of being wise; or they hope that, among such a number, they may find many agreeable connections, - may find customers to create a new business, or keep up an old one; and, as a matter of conyenienee før matrimony, it is notorious, that to see, to be seen, and to obtain access, which cannot otherwise so easily be obtained, are motives for attendance, whose influence is wide spread and powerful among the younger part of these large auditories. ,

4. Perhaps, without allowing for their spiritual influence upon the mind, we may say, there is something in the nature nf gose pel-doctrines highly attractive to some states of the carnal man. They hold forth pardon, free pardon for all manner of sin and iniquity; -- they point to mercy, exercised without regard to human merit, ready for the vilest publican as for the most moral Pharisee; --- they represent the Almighty God as operating with bis influences in a sovereign and uncontroulable way, giving all grace, streagth, and mercy as seemeth him good. Pity that such divine truths should be abused! but to some this seems a most easy and convenient sort of religion; they would like to be saved, and to bave no trouble about it, so they understand the proposition ; – they find sinners at the eleventh hour may be sa ved. To continue in sia is exactly what they wish ; and as the greatness of sin is no bar to mercy, but God is indeed honoured by saving the chief of sinners, they hope to be saved, I bad almost said, for their sin; and, as no merit nor righteousnass can bave a share in obtaining justification, they feel easy in reglecting uncomfortable duties. Such as are yet ignorant that, not justification alone, but holiness also is salvation, conceive great hopes and feel' much peace in the confused idea they have thus formed of the gospel, and prefer it much to that sort of laborious morality which those who know not the gospel as the source of living momls must preach upon. It is true, such cannot be said to love the whole gaspel, but an abuse of part of it. Yet this sensation and mistake cause many to desert other places, and come where they think they have discovcred much The casiest mode of obraining Heaven.

5. Of very great influence too in attracting numbers, is the more energetic style of wurship, which obtains where the gospel calls forth the inost lively and powerful tielings. The hum. alrun sleepy style in which what they say is deliversal at most

places, awakens no interest, moves no passion, has no power to
attract attention, but a gospel preacher, who feels his subject,
will speak on it with animation and interest, and will thereby, in
all probability, stir up sensations of some sort in the breasts of his
hearers. If he laboriously study the word of God, his discourses
will have much substance and novelty; they cannot but approve
a man who seemis so knowing in the Scriptures; if he display
Jesus and his grace with eloquence, eloquence will move, as it
finds principles in our nature adapted to receive its impressions; -

if he display the torments of Hell a little, in the phraseology of Scripture, it will be no marvel if even the unconverted sinnner should tremble, and think he must take a little care to avoid it; to attend at this place appears one of the first things to be done; or, if he display the joys of Heaven, many are pliable enough to wish to go thither when they die, and paturally conclude this to be the way, as they never hear any thing similar at other places. Natural feelings are commonly wrought upon, even without special grace, and men as naturally prefer that preaching under which they feel most, unless, indeed, it happens to make themi too uneasy then it will sometimes give disgust; make them leave the gospel, and go where they may settle on their lees,' and be .. more at rest. Not only will the preaching in so serious a style affect, but even the solemnity of the prayer, when uttered from the heart, will give a high idea of the minister's piety; and, by consequence; suggest to the man who feels it so, that here he partakes of that piety himself. Nor can we here omit the direct influence which the singing in a general, lively, and animated manner, has on the animal frame. As the fife and drum have enlisted many a raw recruit; and animated many a soldier to battle, neither of whom felt' much loyalty or patriotism, so bas the style of singing brought mary a one under the gospel, who yet never felt any thing of real piety; even though energetically joining in that part of the worship, and the influence of this sensation, when it is aroused by musical excellence, is. so well known, as to be even pleaded as an argument for defiling the simplicity of the worship of God with the cornet, dulcimer, and sackbut of heather temples, in hope of attracting, by such ineretricious allurements, the ġoung and giddy.

6. Proceeding from the same higher state of feeling, whether genuine or spurions, which ohtains under the gospel, will be found also a much gwater endeavour, by all wlio lave influence, to exert it in persuading persons to attend on the means of grace. Where there is service but once a day, and that performed as a task, slovened over by indolence, and shortered in every possible . way, the Sabbath, as such, can appear of very little in portiace. . . If it happens to be convenient, persons give attendance; and if not, in neglecting it they do but imitate their minister, who o nits it; -- but if those persons happen to attend a few times uader the gospel, they and the Sabbath fully occupied by two services; XVII,


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