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not a strong, loud voice; but ap- TESTIMONY OF MINISTERS RESPECTpeared with such gravity, and so ING THE REVIVAL or 1740. lemnity, and spake with such distinctness, clearness and precision ; The great revival of President his words were so full of ideas, set Edward's time, is matter of familin such a plain and striking light, iar history to all, and it is generally that few speakers have been so able known that many opposed and gainto command the attention of an au- said it, who should have been dience. His words often discover among its zealous promoters. Mined a great degree of inward fer- isters and others of high standing vour, without much noise or gest in the church, who were settled on ure, and fell with great weight on their lees, were disturbed in their the minds of his hearers.”
repose by that great work, and while some stood aloof from it in
cold distrust, others directly raised “ His prayers were indeed ex- against it the cry of enthusiasm, detempore. He was the farthest from lusion, and disorder. “ Is it not any appearance of a form, as to his strange," says President Edwards, words and manner of expression, of in his Thoughts on the revival, almost any man. He was quite " that in a Christian, orthodox singular and inimitable in this, by country, and such a land of light as any who have not a spirit of real this is, there should be many at a and undissembled devotion ; yet loss whose work this is, whether he always expressed himself with the work of God or the work of the decency and propriety. He ap- devil? Is it not a shame to Newpeared to have much of the grace England, that such a work should and spirit of prayer ; to pray with be much doubted of here?” the spirit and with the understand. A few months after the publicaing; and he performed this part of tion of this work of President Edduty much to the acceptance and wards, an advertisement appeared edification of those who joined with in the Boston newspapers, signed him. He was not wont, in ordina- by a number of clergymen, desiring ry cases, to be long in his prayers ; that such of their brethren as were an error which he observed was persuaded there had been of late a often hurtful to public and social happy revival of religion, through prayer, as it tends rather to damp an extraordinary divine influence in than promote true devotion.
many parts of this land, and were “ He gave himself altogether to concerned for the honor and progress the work of the ministry, and en- of this remarkable work of God, tangled not himself with the affairs should have an interview at Boston of this life. He left the particular the day after the Commencement oversight and direction of the tem- at Cambridge, and publicly and poral concerns of his family, almost conjointly express their opinion entirely to Mrs. Edwards. He was concerning it; and that such as less acquainted with most of his could not be personally present, temporal affairs than many of his should send their opinion in wri. neighbours, and seldom knew when ting.” Agreeably to this notice, and by whom his forage for winter about seventy ministers assembled, was gathered in, or how many milk and drew up and signed a declarakine he had, or whence his table tion, which they published. They was furnished.”
also received and published at the
same time, numerous letters from Nor have we gone into such an opisassociations and individual minis- ion of the bodily effects with which ters who found it inconvenient to th
this work has been attended in some attend the meeting. As probably
of its subjects, as to judge them any
signs that persons who have been so the fact of such a meeting is not
affected, were then under a saving
ffected. ve very generally known, I may not work of the Spirit of God. No; we seem idly employed, in giving a never so much as called these bodily few extracts from the pamphlet seizures, convictions; or spake of them which they sent forth. It is to me as the immediate work of the Holy a interesting comment on the spirit Spirit. Yet we do not think them in
consistent with a work of God upon of those times.
the soul at that very time; but judge After some introductory remarks
that those inward impressions which the ministers at Boston say,
come from the Spirit of God, those
terrors and consolations of which he For these and other reasons, we, is the author, may, according to the whose names are hereunto annexed, natural frame and constitution which pastors of churches in New-England, some persons are of, occasion such bomet together in Boston, July 7th, 1743, dily effects; and, therefore, that these think it our indispensable duty, (with- extraordinary outward symptoms, are out judging or censuring such of our not an argument that the work is debrethren as cannot at present see things lusive, or from the influence and agenin the same light with us) in this open cy of the evil spirit. and conjunct manner to declare, to the glory of sovereign grace, our full per- After expressing their grief " at suasion, either from what we have seen any accounts sent abroad, repreourselves, or received upon creditable senting this work as all enthusiasm, testimony, that there has been a happy delusion, and disorder," and admitand remarkable revival of religion in many parts of this land, through an un
ting that in some places irregularcommon divine influence; after a long
ono ities had accompanied it, they betime of great decay and deadness, and seech all partakers and promoters a sensible and very awful withdraw of of it,
the Holy Spirit from his sanctuary , among us.
That they be not ignorant of Satan's devices; that they watch and pray
against errors and misconduct of every “ The present work,” they say, * appears to be remarkable" in the which they desire to honour and adfollowing respects ; namely, “ on vance; particlularly, that they do not account of the numbers wrought make secret impulses on their minds, upon”--the suddenness and quick without a due regard to the written progress of it, many persons and word, the rule of their duty: A very places being surprised with the dangerous mistake which we appregracious visit together, or near
hend some in these times have gone
into. That to avoid Arminianism they about the same time, the heavenly
do not verge to the opposite side of Aninfluence diffusing itself far and tino nianism; while we would have wide, like the light of the morning,” others take good heed to themselves,
_" also in respect of the degree of lest they be by some led into, or fixed operation, both in a way of terror in Arminian tenets, under the pretence and in a way of consolation ; at. of opposing Antinomian errors. That tended in many with unusual bodily
Laymen do not invade the ministerial effects.”
office, and under a pretence of exhort
ing set up preaching; which is very * Respecting these “bodily ef
contrary to gospel order, and tends to fects,” after explaining the true na introduce errors and confusion into the ture of conversion, the Pastors say, ehurch. That ministers do not invade the province of others, and in ordina- wrought on since November 1741. Di. ary cases preach in another's parish vers before that had been met with without his knowledge, and against under the ministry of the Rev. Mr. his consent: Nor encourage raw and Daniel Rogers and the Rev. Mr. indiscreet young candidates in rushing Wheelock, not included in this numinto particular places, and preaching ber. But on one day in November publicly or privately as some have aforesaid, above eighty were pricked done to the no small disrepute and at the heart by a sermon from Rom. damage of the work in places where it viii. 1., had here from the Rev. Mr. once promised to flourish. Though Josiah Crocker. Scarce a sermon deat the same time we would have min- livered after that wonderful day, but isters show their regard to the spiritu. the hearts of some seem to be reached al welfare of their people, by suffering by conviction, conversation, or consothem to partake of the gifts and gra- lation. This revival of the power of ces of able, sound, and zealous preach- godliness appears to be the genuine ers of the word, as God in his provi- work of the Holy Spirit accompanying dence may give opportunity therefor: his word, and in answer to a spirit of Being persuaded God has in this cay prayer poured out from God to plead remarkably blessed the labours of with faith in Christ for this good. some of his servants who have travel. Spiritual things are now treated and ed in preaching the gospel of Christ. felt as realities. We have not known That people beware of entertaining visions, nor trances, nor revelations. prejudices against their own pastors, But brotherly exhorting with more and do not run into unscriptural sep- modesty and affection than hath been arations. That they do not indulge a represented. disputatious spirit, which has been attended with mischievous effects; nor From the Rev. Daniel Putnam, discover a spirit of censoriousness, Pastor of the second Church in uncharitableness, and rash judging the Reading. state of others.
Sometime in the beginning of Respecting the fruits of the re
March 1742, under a sense of the vival, the Pastors say, “ of those great decay of religion among us, we who were judged hopefully con- kept a day of fasting and prayer, to verted, and made a public profess- seek to God for the pouring out of his ion of religion, there have been Spirit upon us, and God was pleased fewer instances of scandal and out of his abundant grace to give us apostasy than might be expected ; speedy answers of our prayer. For so that as far as we are able to form
the space of five or six weeks, more
or less of my people younger and elda judgment, the face of religion
er came to my house every day in is lately changed much for the bet. the week except Sabbaths; and maniter in many of our towns and con- festly under a work of conviction, deepgregations. There appears to be ly concerned for the state of their more experimental godliness and souls. lively Christianity, than the most of us can remember we have ever From the Rev. John Rogers, the seen before.”
venerable Pastor of the first Church Many of the letters sent to the in Ipswich. meeting are interesting, as containing much of the local histories of the I shall on the very day of your proparishes. But I shall select from posed Meeting, viz. July 7th, (God these only a few scattered passages.
continuing my life to that day) enter The Rev. Peter Thacher, Pastor
on the 78th year of my age, and in the
54th of my ministry. And now desire, of the first church in Middlebo
as I have utmost reason, to bless God rough, writes,
who has given me to see a day of such
marvellous power and grace, particThere have been above two hundred ularly in this place, and since the in a judginent of charity savingly Rev. Mr. Whitefield and Tennent
Vol. 1.-No. VII.
came among us; wherein great num- exhorters, from an invasion of the minbers of our young people, and others isterial office, and many other irreguof more advanced age give clear evi- larities, that have been complained of dence of a saving change wrought in in many other places. And here I them, and by the fruits of the Spirit would take leave with all humility to show that they are born of the Spirit : say, that had I the opportunity of be. And many persons of Christian expe- ing with you, whilst I should gladly riences before, have been greatly re- bear testimony against these things vived, enriched with grace, establish- wheresoever they prevail, I should be ed and comforted by a new influence, for using a becoming care that the disin and through the word read and orders complained of might not be magpreached.
nified in an undue measure, and that
nothing might come under that charHe speaks of the revival of "a acter and denomination that is not wormost powerful and clear work of thy of it. Whilst I should be for guardgrace wrought in the hearts of mul. ing our pulpits and parishes against titudes, from one end of the land to
bold and ignorant intruders, and such as the other ;” and adds, “ All such
may unjustly pretend to an extraordin
ary call and warrant from God, I should as believe it with their heart, will
be careful that none of ihe zealous confess it with their mouth."
and faithful preachers of the everlasThe Rev. Oliver Peabody of the ting gospel, and important doctrines little Church at Natick, writes, of it might be excluded, being persia
ded that God has blessed the labours Among my little people, (I would of strangers and even of itinerants mention it to the glory of the rich grace, among the people with whom I am and of the blessed Spirit of God,) there concerned. have been very apparent strivings and operations of the Holy Ghost among From the Rev. Jeremiah Wise, Indians and English, young and old, of the church in Berwick. nale and female. There have been added to our church (of such as I hope With respect to the ordaining of shall be saved) about fifty persons of missionaries, which has been practiced different nations, since the beginning for some time in the country, and has of last March, was two years, whose been lately voted a disorder, I cannot lives in general witness to the sincer- join in censuring it as such; or in conity of their profession. Here we neve demning the prectice of separating er had any crying out in an extraor- some of the fraternity, that are qualidinary manner, but the Holy Spirit has fied for it, to the sacred ministry, when been pleased to work in a more calm there is manifest occasion for it. way; but I hope effectually.
From six of the pastors of the IIe adds in a postscript,
Eastern Association in the county
of York. I would particularly remark that some with whom I have conversed
As to disorders in practice, such as, date their convictions which have been
private persons of no education, withstill carried on without any great intermission, before ever Mr. White
out any regular call taking upon them field came bither. And, also, that
to preach the word of God; the ordain
ing and separating any person to the about fifteen years ago we had some
work of the evangelical ministry at thing like this at Natick.
large, and without a special relation
to any particular charge to enter inte From the Rev. William Shurt.
the regular districts of settled minisleff, of the second church in Ports ters; persons assuming to themselves mouth, N. H.
the prerogative of God to look into and
judge the hearts of others, censuring I must at the same time declare there and condemning their brethren, and has not been that disturbance from lay- especially their ministers, as Pharisees, Arminians, blind, and unconverted, &c. by faith alone, are often charged upon and upon these pretended grounds ma- as Antinomian errors. And with the king an actual separation from their dead formalist, thot sacred zeal, which respective pastors, though they open- is kindled in the breast of true believly disavow the above-mentioned errors, ers, from the sanctifying Spirit, formand are regular in their lives; all which ing their hearts to love, and drawing crrors and disorders being of perni forth the powers of their souls in a cious consequence, as tending to ob. fervent lively manner, to pursue the scure the glorious work of God, bring great duties required of us by God in it into disrepute and obstruct the pro- his word; why all this is by such termgress of it, we would in like manner ed enthusiasm. bear our joint and solemn testimony And no wonder therefore there are against.
so inany enemies to the blessed work
of God in the land ; seeing it is to be From the Rev. David Hall of Sut feared there are so many, who would
have all be counted Enthusiasts, Antiton.
nomians, &c., that are under any But I conceive that in general the powerful constraints from the views of subjects of this work, are groundlessly divine sovereignty and grace. charged with such errors and evils at But let such men think what they this day; and indeed I marvel not at will of their slighting the precious it. For as there are very sad tinct. showers of divine grace; yet I am of ures of Arminianism in many ; so with the opinion of Mr. Edwards of Norththe subjects of that error, the pure ampton, that the GREAT JEHOVAH of a doctrine of free grace, and justification truth has been in New England.
Analysis of the Principles of Rhe- it is to instruct in this too much
torical Delivery, as applied in neglected branch of education. Reading and Speaking. By EB- The books heretofore used, with ENEZER PORTER, D. D., Bart. different degrees of merit, have lett Professor of Sacred Rheto much that is plainly erroneous, or ric in the Theological Seminary, deal too profusely in mechanical Andover. Andover : Mark New and impracticable theories. They man; and others.
also will coincide in this opinion
who consider how small is the proWe shall always hail with pleas- portion of our public speakers, ure any successful effort to improve whose elocution is natural and easy. rhetorical delivery. When a book A preacher with a highly pleasing appears on the subject of Elocu- delivery is a personage so uncom. tion, bearing the name of one who mon, that although he is superficial has long been professor of oratory in attainments, he will obtain a in our oldest Theological Semina- fame and influence while he lives, ry, and is acknowledged to posscs3 which the man of solid sense and a discriminating and correct taste, extensive acquisition fails to acour expectations are raised as to quire. The wretched speaker may the execution of the work. That a give us valuable thought, but we treatise of this kind is needed, shall often be too listless to prize it : which shall be judicious, discrimi- the man of good delivery may give nating, perspicuous, and practical, us trash, and we shall be tempted those will believe whose business to deem it solid gold,