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diligence and strictness in the pass with respect to them, for care you take of them, by the which his soul travailed in the value he himself has manifested agonies of death, and in ineffor the souls of men, by what fable conflicts with the dreadful he has done and suffered for wrath of God.
You are now them; he has shown how about to receive the precious precious he has judged immor- treasure at his hands, which tal souls to be, in that he, you are to keep for him; you though a person of infinite
glory, present yourself here before the did not think his own blood, Lord for this end, that you his life, his soul, too precious may, as it were, reach forth to be offered up as a price for your hand and take this great them, to redeem them, that deposit, with solemn vow, they might obtain that salvation, diligently and faithfully to keep in order to which he now is it, and devote yourself to that about to commit a number of service; so that, if it be possithem to your care, and to en- ble for you to prevent it, no trust you with the means he has one of those infinitely precious provided for that end; com- jewels may be lost; but that mitting to you his holy oracles, you may return them all safe and the food of his house, to him from whose hands
you which is his own body and receive them. ; blood, that therewith you
Consider the example of your might feed these souls; and, in glorious Lord and Master: some sense, committing to you There were a number of the the keys of his stores and trea- souls of men committed by the sures, that you might supply Father into his hands, that he and enrich them, and be a might take care for their salvameans of their eternal wealth tion. And after what manner and glory.
did he execute his office? How Consider, dear Sir, how great did he lay himself out for the an honour is conferred on you salvation of these souls? What by him, whom God the Father great things did he do? And hath made head of the whole how greatly did he deny himuniverse, and Lord of all things self? How did this great Shepto the church ; that after he has herd of the sheep behave himprovided for the salvation of self, when he saw the wolf souls, by, his dying pains and coming to destroy the sheep? precious blood, and the Father He did not flee to save his own has committed to him all power life, and so leave the sheep to in heaven and earth, that he become a prey; but from pity might actually bestow eternal and love to the sheep, interlife on them for whom he died, posed himself between them he should call you to be a.co- and their enemy, stood between worker with him, and should them and harm, and encountercommit precious souls to youred the wolf, and, in the conflict, care, that you might be the in-gave his own life to save theirs. strument of bringing them home John, x. 11–15. We read of to him, and bringing that to Christ's travailing fori: souls, Isa. liii. 10, 11. “ It pleased the stand in Christ's stead towards Lord to bruise him, he hath this people, and to act as his put him to grief; when thou ambassador, should you not shalt make his soul an offering shew the like spirit, the like for sin, he shall see his seed love to souls, and imitate him he shall see of the travail of in his readiness to labour, and his soul and be satisfied.” And deny yourself and suffer, yea, how did he travail for this seed be ready to spend and be spent of his? Look into the garden for them, like the blessed of Gethsemane, and there be apostle? 2 Cor. xii. 15. hold him lying on the earth The case with you, Sir, is with his body covered with as if the head of a family, that clotted blood, with his soul was a great prince, with a numexceedingly sorrowful, even un- ber of children in a strange to death, and offering up strong land, when going home to recryings and tears, together with ceive a kingdom, should leave his blood: and look to the his children behind him, and cross, where he endured far commit them to the care of a more extreme agonies, and servant, safely to conduct them drank up the bitter cup of through a dangerous wilderness, God's wrath, and shed the re- and bring them home to him; mainder of his blood. Thus in which case, he has their he travailed in birth with his health and lives committed to seed; thus he laboured and his care, as well as their future suffered for the salvation of glory in his kingdom. With those souls that the Father had what care and watchfulness committed to him. This is the would it be expected of a serexample of the great Shepherd. vant, that he should execute And though it is not required his office in such a case! And, of under-shepherds that they surely, if he fails of being should endure sufferings of such thoroughly careful and watcha degree or nature, (for Christ ful, after he has taken upon has suffered them for that end, him so great a charge, and any that both ministers and people disaster should be the consemight escape them,) yet surely quence of his unfaithfulness, it he expects that, as they would will be most justly required of approve themselves his dis- him, that he should answer for ciples and followers and co- it, and he will inexcusably fall workers with him, in seeking under his master's heaviest disthe salvation of the same souls, pleasure. they should not be backward to And suffer me, Sir, to put go through any labours or suffer- you in mind of the account you ings, which may be requisite must give to your master, of the in them, in order to their most souls he seems this day to be effectually promoting the great about to commit to you. You end of his sufferings, with re-are to watch for these souls, as gard to the souls he has com- one that must give an account. mitted to them.
If any one of these souls should And as you, dear Sir, are to be missing hereafter, it will be demanded of you another day, to him, “ Those that thou by your great Lord, "What is gavest me I have kept, and become of such a soul? Here none of them is lost but the are not all the souls I com- son of perdition,” you will be mitted to you, to bring home able to hold up your head with to me; there is such a one comfort before your Judge; missing; what is become of it? your account will be accepted, Has it perished through your you shall be acquitted, and neglect?". If you are able to your unsuccessful faithfulness say at that time, “ Lord, it was shall be rewarded. But if, when not done through my neglect; it shall be demanded of
you, I have done what in me lay What is become of such and for his salvation. I ceased not such souls? you shall be dumb, to warn, and counsel, and re-having nothing to say, your conprove him, and faithfully set science testifying against you, before him his danger, and have and it shall appear that it has not forborne to declare thy been much owing to your unwhole counsel to him. I have faithfulness, Oh how dreadful not neglected this and other will your case be! What consouls that thou didst commit to fusion and astonishment will fill me, to gratify my sloth, or pur- your soul, before your great sue my worldly interest. I have Master and Judge! And, regiven myself wholly to this member, that the blood of such work, labouring therein day and souls will be required at your night. I have been ready, Lord, hands. Ezek. xxxiii
. 8. as thou knowest, to sacrifice And suffer me, dear brother, my own ease and profit, and to tell
you must, pleasure, and temporal conveni- another day, meet these souls, ence, and the good will of my of which you are now going to neighbours, for the sake of the take charge, before the judggood of the souls of which I ment seat of Christ; and if, by had the charge: I have not led means of your faithfulness tothis soul into any charge by my wards them, in your work, you ill example. I have neglected shall meet them at the right no means of thy appointment, hand of Christ in glory, how either public or private, to turn joyful a meeting will it be to him from sin to God; I sought you! They will be indeed your out acceptable words, and crown of rejoicing in that day. studied for the most likely But if you behold them with means to be used for his saving devils at your left hand, in good; but he would not hearken, horror and despair, your con, but turned a deaf ear, was science accusing you of unstupid and obstinate under all, faithfulness towards them, and and went on, carelessly and it appear that they are lost frowardly in the imagination of through your neglect, how his own heart." If you are distressing will the sight of them able to say, in like manner as be to you! Christ did to the Father, with Your master and mine is this respect to the souls committed day calling me to resign the
chapter, verse 9th, of Acts, it where, and when, and in what is mentioned that Philip, the manner they were excited by the evangelist, had four daughters, Spirit, and could not be subject" which did prophesy.” Youred to rules. In this sense,
procorrespondent, I trust, will be phesying formod no part of regusatisfied with testimonies from lar public worship, and cannot holy writ; or, I would refer therefore be supposed as rehim to Martin Luther, who ferred to in this direction. hath affirmed, “ that every good To prophesy, denotes, very Christian, (not only men, but frequently, “ to explain in an women also) is a preacher." infallible and edifying way, the
Finally, and what must put spiritual meaning of the Old beyond all doubt the warrant Testament prophesies, and their under the Christian dispensation accomplishment in Christ.” He for women, as well as men who exercised this gift, spoke preaching, is the declaration in to edification, and exhortation, scripture, that " male and fe- and comfort. In the judgment male are all one in Christ." of the apostle, this gift occupied I am, your's, &c. S. the highest rank, and, conse
quently, he who possessed it, THOUGHTS
occupied an elevated station in ON 1. COR. XI. 5. the church. . To prophesy, in Every woman that prayeth or pria this sense of the term, is forphesieth with her head uncovered, dishonoureth her head."
bidden a female, because it
would be to teach, and to To understand the meaning usurp authority over the man. of the apostle here, it is neces- To prophesy, denotes, in sary, first, to ascertain the pro- some places, to sing hymns in phesying" of the woman. Pub- the praise of God. I shall fic, not private worship, is dis produce some places, where, I cussed; and the rules are ap- judge, it must be so understood, plicable to the former only. In and then leave it with your private, the female may wor- readers to judge whether such şhip God as she pleases; but, an interpretation is not appliwhen she “prayeth or prophe-cable to the passage under dissieth” in public, she is to do cussion. 1 Chron. xxv. 17. so in a way not dishonourable“ Moreover, David and the to her head. In a well-known captains of the host separated passage she is forbidden to to the service of the sons of teach or to speak in the church: Asaph and of Heman, and of here she is directed how to pray Jeduthun, who should prophesy and to prophesy in the church. with harps, with psalteries, and
To prophesy, commonly sig- with cymbals. And the numnifies to foreteli future events : ber of the workmen, accordthis gift was bestowed on females ing to their service was, &c. both under the Old Testament, who prophesied according to the and at the commencement of order of the king." Ver. 3. Of the New. Prophets and pro- the sons of Jeduthun, six, under phetesses foretold future events, the hands of their father JeduVOL. VII.