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a hasty meal, little advantage was gained. The same reason which led him to pare his nails, cut off bis hair, and give away his Chinese dress, induced him to desist from being singular in bis manner of eating also. His nails were at first suffered to grow, that they might be like those of the Chinese. He had a tail (i. e. a tress of hair) of some length, and became an adept with the chop-sticks. He walked about the Hong, with a Chinese frock, and with thick Chinese shoes. In this, he meant well; but, as he frequently remarked, was soon convinced that he had judged ill.'
Another curious fact is stated; that "So desirous was he to acquire the language, that even his secret prayers to the Almighty were offered in broken Chinese. The place of retirement is often fresh in his memory, and he always feels a sort of regard for it, as being the childhood of bis Chinese existence.'
THE ESSAYIST.–No. X.
When there is a large number of churches and chapels erecting, and when efforts are employed to maintain the influence of the Established Church by these means, by the erection of national schools, and the activity of the clergy, it may be worthy of enquiry how it happens that the dissenters are so extensively gaining ground, and that even in the metropolis all the great world are pressing to hear a dissenter from the English establishment.
For many years the Established Church sias been lulled to rest, for the ancient conflicts which called forth her energies have greatly ceased. The powers of popery have declined, and the spirit of dissent bas evaporated. Some progress has been making among the dissenters, but it has been on new grounds, the bold preaching of Calvinism, and the eloquence and energy called forth in their service. The Methodists have in like manner flourished, but they have continued their alliance with the Established Church. Here, therefore, there has been no competition arising from those strong divisions which at first created Puritans and Nonconformists; and holding their ground by long and quiet tenure, too many of the clergy, though they have disliked what they deemed innovations, have cared little for the desertion from their flocks, while they have received the same portion of the fleece. Their incomes not being derived from the numbers of their auditories, but being secured by law, whether those auditors were many or few, they could at most only feel their pride mortified, but their more tangible part-their pockets, were not hurt.
The emigrations from their churches were thought to arise froin non-residence, and some years ago this evil was remedied, but still it has been found that the cause of dissent has made progress. New churches carried into new neighbourhoods, it is now hoped, will become auxiliaries to the cause, and it is a fact, that wherever they are built, they have congregations, without greatly diminishing those of other churches, a proof that though many of the old ones were not full, the trouble of going to them was, with many persons, a bar in the way; and moreover, probably the population having become augmented, such accommodation is necessary,
But the times are more enlightened than they were. Eloquence begins to find its way into the pulpit, as well as into the senate, or at the bar; and if the clergy do not begin to alter their method of preaching, they must still continue to lose their hearers. There are three evils which must be removed to render them popular their Doctripes, their Style, and their Delivery.
Their Doctrines must be more agreeable to the articles of the Church of England, as they are worded. There is something in these truths that meets the state of man, and when a sinner is really enquiring the way of salvation, if he cannot find them at church, he will seek after them at the meeting. Original Sin, Justification, by Faith, Regeneration, and Sanctification, are truths which, connected with the Spirit's influences, never fail to attract, to convince, and to convert. Hence religion is at best but a form, where they are not proclaimed, and the people hear out of custom, without being profited, He that is unjust is unjust still, and he that is filthy is filthy still.' They tend to bring Christ to view, and where he is preached, souls are saved. But where these doctrines are withheld, neither Jew nor Greek would find any stumbling-block in the way of their prejudices, nor would they ever be turned from the error of their ways. The preaching of too many of our clergy manifests any thing rather than the resolution of St. Paul, I am determined to know nothing among you, save Jesus Christ and him crucified. Were not law and custom in the way, this deficiency would as surely empty all our churches as it thins them, and as it almost invariably brings to ruin the congregations of the dissenters where it prevails. On the doors of those temples where Christ is not exalted, Ichabod is written.
A second deficiency is in the Style. A popular preacher has aimed to substitute the Oration for the Sermon. He has so far succeeded as to gain a host of hearers, but it may be doubted if this is the real cause. Properly speaking, the clergy do not preach SERMONS. They read Essays, and often Essays of the most insipid kind. In consequence, forcible appeals are rarely made to the conscience; the preacher never feels, and the people can catch no fire where there is no flame. Eulogiums are delivered on any topic rather than the love of Christ, and every thing is treated in so hasty and superficial a manner from the time allowed for delivery, that no improvement is effected on the judgment, and no impression made on the heart.
A third deficiency is in the Delivery. It has been hinted, that it is often cold and hurried, and so many preach in a well-bred whisper, that the mere circumstance of a good voice, whatever be The matter, is, sometimes thought by a whole parish, a cover for a multitude of sius. But that which greatly impedes success is the habit of reading. Were this well done, with grace, and ease, and fervour, without slavishly adhering to the book, it would lose many of its disadvantages, and is, in some cases, better than a hesitating delivery, or the extempore stuff which some presume to utter. But a number of clergy having recourse to the composition of others, cannot enter with spirit into their thoughts; and not ascending the pulpit with their minds full of their subject, their hearts glowing to deliver it, and their words hanging ready to drop from their tongues, they lose all those advantages gained by a great majority of the leading dissenters. It has been observed of a popular clergyman of a large parish
in the metropolis, that .bis style is very remarkable, for it varies in every sermon;' a little thought would soon develop the secret. Now, though he preaches well, yet he must be remarkably clever to suit his delivery to all styles, and he has, therefore, to vanquish a difficulty of no small magnitude. By a statute of Charles II. the University of Cambridge was prohibited from allowing the reading of sermons, and it was called 'a lazy way. Like every thing else it was liable to be abused, and has since been carried to a lamentable extreme. The eyes as well as the ears of the auditors must be addressed, and a mere speaking image in the pulpit is an abomination. On religion, a subject of all others the most calculated to touch the passions, and obtain by these an access to the heart, the greatest indifference has been displayed by those, whose duty it has been to exbibit it in all its lustre, and where the richest language is too poor for the subject, and the most glowing touches of eloquence are too faint, the most extreme poverty of words and thoughts, and the most feeble energies have been employed. Let the clergy, therefore, begin a new course of preaching, with their new churches; or the erection of them will for the most part be in vain; or should they get hearers in these days of eloquence, which may be doubtful, they will fail to convert the heart, and to turn the sinner from the error of his ways. The advice of sacred writ, which is at all times important, is peculiarly so to the Minister of the Church, at the present inoment, “Take heed unto thyself, and to thy doctrine.'
The lives of the clergy have not been brought into this essay; but, in conclusion, it may be requisite to add, that they too often complete the evils produced by careless preaching ; and that