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all. The Apostle distinctly asserts the inspįration, sufficiency, intelligibleness, and design for which the scriptures were given, when he says,—“All scripture is given by inspiration of God,” and is profitable for doctrine, the discovery of all necessary truth ; and for reproof, the refutation of all capital errors; for correction, that is, of evil affections, habits, and manners; and for instruction in righteousness, or information on all points of moral duty and excellence; that the man of God may be perfect thoroughly furnished unto all good works.” The inspired penmen were moved and influenced by the same Spirit; all of them were infallibly preserved from error, and led to record only pure and unadulterated truth. All their writings come to us with the authoritative declaration, “ Thus saith the Lord.” They propose all that they record, for our adoption, not for mere examination, to be received or rejected as we please. Whatever the book of God reveals, that, we are bound to believe; whatever it commands, to obey; whatever it forbids, to avoid ; while its sanctions are the most awful, involving nothing short of the salvation or perdition of the soul. If God be the Author of Holy Scripture, it must be the fountain of truth. Never, therefore, can we have a too high opinion, or shew a too devout regard to the divine testimony. To honor the word of God, by esteeming it highly, daily consulting it, trying every opinion and doctrine by it, as the only standard of truth, and regarding every thing that is opposed to it, as error, cannot but meet the approval of the God of truth. While to neglect it, or to mix up anything with it, and thus give to the productions of man, an authority, or a place which belongs only to the divine Word, would be to detract from its value, to divide its claim, and to use it for purposes far different and inferior to those which God intended in its bestowment.
If we examine the contents of the sacred scriptures, we shall have clear and sufficient proof, that the Bible is the fountain of all spiritual truth. Consider the sublime, infinitely important, and personally interesting topics which it unfolds. What a description of man is here, in his primitive dignity--in his original glory; formed after the “image of God”-bearing a moral resemblance to his Maker-his understanding full of light, enlightened by a pure beam from the Father of lights-his will divinely influenced, and in perfect accord with the Divine will ; while the heart exercised ena tire and undivided affection towards the Supreme Excellence
the Chief Good, What an awful account of his fall from
his high and holy estate-his loss of the divine image by the commission of sin-his consequent exposure to the righteous displeasure of God, and to the threatened curse of his broken law-the total corruption of his nature, having his understanding darkened, his will perverse and depraved, and his heart with all its affections alienated from God. How distinctly and with what clearness are declared his absolute need of pardon, of purity and light, without which he can neither be delivered from condemnation, nor possess the capacity necessary for enjoyment of fellowship with God on earth, or everlasting communion and association with him in heaven. Here moreover, we have exhibited that wondrous plan, which the utmost stretch of human thought, and the widest range of angelic intellect and power, could never have devised the scheme through which God can be just, and yet the justifier of the ungodly; pardoning the most guilty, and accepting the most polluted and depraved, who, renouncing every other ground of hope, relies on the perfect work of the Redeemer; God thus magnifying his perfectlaw and vindicating the claim of his righteous government by the work of his Son, even while he absolves and pardons all who truly repent and believe the gospel. Here also we behold sin crucified and slain by the Saviour's cross, and faith in the Redeemer delivering the soul from its reigning power, and purifying it from its defiling influence. Moreover here the vail which conceals heaven, its society, its worship, and the nature of its happiness from view, is partially removed, and we learn that within that holy place, “nothing shall enter that defileth or maketh a lie;" that everyhuman spirit admitted there, is a "just soul made perfect," that its worship is profoundly humble, inexpressibly elevated and pure, and without cessation ; and that its happiness chiefly consists in the perfectly holy character of its inhabitants, and their conscious nearness to God the fountain of purity and joy. These are some of the truths contained in the Book of God's revelation, and they commend themselves to every mau's conscience as infinitely valuable and important. True it is, that they are most generally received by the poor and the unlearned; but this is not because they are at all repugnant to the soundest and most enlightened reason, but because of their purity, the high character of their claims, and the perfect submission they require to the Divine authority. Therefore from many is heard the exclamation, “ These are hard sayings, who can hear them ?" Yet the mightiest intellects have bowed to their authority; and the
most enlightened minds have sought increased light from this source.
Sir Isaac Newton, whose mighty genius and exalted capacity, enabled him to measure the heavenly bodies with their distances—Sir W. Jones, whose profound and extensive acquaintance with general literature, and familiarity with the languages and learning of the eastern nations, were unrivalled-Milton, who soared on high as with an eagle's wings, and looked as on the throne of God, while he sang of heaven lost by man, and paradise regained by man's Redeemer-and Locke, who possessed capacious powers united with the most solid judgment and extensive acquirements—and many others, the wisest and the best of the sons of men, have recognised the Bible as the source of truth, under the fullest conviction of the infinite importance of its contents. Moreover, they who have received the Bible as the word of God, have retained their persuasion of its truth, through the varied scenes and circumstances of human life, and in the prospect of eternity, when men are most seri. ous and thoughtful, and their judgment is most free from a wrong bias; then they have taken the sacred volume as their only safe guide, and amid the light which it has shed around them, they have not been afraid to tread the pathway of death.
In commencing a series of papers on ecclesiastical subjects, we have thought it right to refer thus to the character of the divine Word; with the desire of increasing in our readers, their regard for its holy truths, and of leading them to feel the great iniportance of ever making it the ultimate standard of appeal. It should be the grand aim of every Christian minister, to bring their several congregations to a simple-hearted and unconditional surrender of judgment, and conscience, and conduct to the dictation of the Word of God. That Word is provided for us, as moral agents, accountable to God the moral Governor, while our accountability is in proportion to the means we possess of ascertaining the Divine will. Truth is every thing to us-truth of every kind is valuable-right views, right principles, right motives founded in truth, are always important. It is so in all that relates to the things of this world, how much more so in spiritual things, in all that relates to God, to heaven, and to eternity. We believe the revelation that God has given is a perfect revelation, sufficient for the purposes for which it was given--sufficient of itself, without any human additions, and so expressed as that any man with the right use of his powers, and depending on divine instruction, may so comprehend it, as to derive from it all requisite light and guidance. The learned and the unlearned, the rich and the poor, the aged and the young may come to this rich “treasure of wisdom and knowledge," and "may be made wise unto salvation, through faith which is in Christ Jesus." The celebrated Bishop Horsley has the following admirable remark in one of his sermons :-"I will not scruple to assert, that the most illiterate Christian, if he can but read his English Bible, and will take the pains to read it in this manner, (viz., comparing parallel passages,) will not only attain all that practical knowledge which is necessary to his salvation, but by God's blessing, he will become learned in every thing relating to his religion in such a degree, that he will not be liable to be misled, either by the refined arguments, or by the false assertions of those who endeavor to engraft their own opinions upon the oracles of God. He may safely be ignorant of all philosophy, except what is to be learned from the sacred books, which indeed contain the highest philosophy adapted to the lowest apprehensions. He may safely remain ignorant of all history, except so much of the history of the first ages of the Jewish, and of the Christian church, as is to be gathered from the canonical books of the Old and New Testaments. Let him study these in the manner 1 recommend, and let him never cease to pray for the illumination of that Spirit by which these books were dictated, and the whole compass of abstruse philosophy and recondite history, shall furnish no argument with which the perverse will of man shall be able to shake this learned Christian's faith. The Bible thus studied, will indeed prove to be what we Protestants esteem it-a certain and sufficient rule of faith and practice-a helmet of salvation which alone may quench the fiery darts of the wicked.”
Let us then highly prize the Bible, and study it with increased diligence and prayer, for Divine illumination. Let us bring our principles and our practice, as individuals and as churches,to this safe and infallible standard,and thus ascertain their character, and test their value. May we resolve to hold with tenacious grasp, and at whatever cost, all that the Word of God inculcates; and to renounce, though at the sacrifice of early prejudices, or tastes, or habits, all that it forbids. Thus while we prove our veneration for the divine Word, our attachment to our peculiar ecclesiastical views will be at once enlightened and firm-scriptural and consis. tenta
THE BISHOP OF LONDON AND HIS CLERGY.
The Rev. C. J. Yorke, Rector of Shenfield, who is favorably known in the religious world as the author of several excellent treatises, has lately published an address to the Bishop on the subject of his recent charge to the clergy, delivered at Chelmsford, with the following very significant motto on the title page.
“O how unlike the complex works of man,
All persons, whether churchmen or dissenters, should read the address throughout, it is written in a very liberal spirit and reflects great credit on the writer, who is bold enough to stand forward in defence of the great truths of Christianity, where they appear to be compromised in high places. We propose now to give a few extracts upon the agitated topics of the day, and first as to apostolical succession.
Mr. Yorke speaks his sentiments plainly, “The APOSTLES had certainly great powers, but neither they nor the Prophets could have successors. The gift of prophesying and of working miracles distinguished them. And though there may have been Bishops “from the Apostles' times ;" we cannot discover that a single Bishop was actually linked to the Apostolic order. And, therefore, whatever be the respect and attention, which is due to them, from the settled constitution of our church; we cannot too earnestly eschew that superstitious veneration, which must be equally injurious to themselves, the clergy, and the people, and which must ever make our Episcopacy like a disjointed Papacy, asserting the principle of visible headship, but failing to realize it consistently. Some of our Bishops, for example, prefer societies, which their brethren do not. But if, on passing from one diocese to another, or on the change of the Diocesan himself, our judgments and consciences are to veer about; how laughable a spectacle must we afford to the world, and how deteriorated must become our feeling of direct accountability to Him who is “ THE Shepherd and Bishop of our souls."
On the subject of exclusive salvation in the church, he says, “I think, my Lord, that it is not generally noticed how im