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· Others, they will say, more fa- dent they should number their days vourably situated, may find time for better in some other situation, are all the requirements of the Gospel; generally self-deceived. Were they but how can we in the multiplicity of differently situated, they would find our worldly cares, and borne down, obstacles quite as great, as those of as we are, with the fatigue of our which they are now so ready to comdaily avocations ?' Do you then se- plain. The chief difficulty lies in riously ask how you can find time their own hearts. The great thing for the duties of religion ? For what is for a person to be faithful accorwas time given to you? Can you ding to what he hath, whether it be find any thing more important to do, ten talents or but one. Let him fill than to glorify God? Remember the up his proper sphere well, and it command of the Almighty : “What- matters not whether he is a ruler, or soever ye do, do all to the glory of a subject; whether he wears a crown, God.' What prevents your taking or dwells in a cottage; whether he care of the body and the soul at the turns up the soil, or ploughs the same time? Why may you not,
He may in any condition, while you are diligent in business,' fear God and keep his commandbe also servent in spirit serving the ments. He may any where, if he Lord ?' Neither exclusion from the will, so number his days, as to apply world, nor exemption from its cares his heart upto wisdom. and business is essential to growth in 4. We proceed to mention some of grace; indeed they are both unavoid- the principal Motives which ought to able to the person who would aim at stimulate us to the faithful discharge distinguished usefulness in life. We of this great duty. are all to serve God and our genera- First then, the authority of God tion in the world, and not by going should be ever present to our minds. unbidden out of it--in the lawful bu. He who made and preserves us and siness of our respective callings, and sent his Son to die for us, has an unnot by neglecting it. The Psalmist doubted right to our services. And lived not in solitude, but in society; what is the tenor of his requirements ? and the public cares and burdens of Thou shalt love the Lord thy God his exalted station must have been with all thy heart,' and 'thy neighbour most oppressive. But instead of as thyself. Whether therefore ye eat, asking to be delivered from them, or drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to his prayer was, that he might be the glory of God. Ye are not your taught how to perform every duty, so own, ye are bought with a price, as lo glorify God and fill up every therefore glorify God in your body day with the highest degree of useful and in your spirit which are God's.' Dess. We number our days best, not Jehovah demands the undivided serwhen we retire from the world in dis- vice of all our faculties; and who gust, nor when we find nothing to do; will dare to question his right to our but when we are brought into the obedience? What ingratitude, what widest sphere of usefulness, and fill it madness is it to rebel against his auto the greatest advantage.
thority. How dare you, my friend, If we loved God with all the heart, waste a day, or an hour in sloth, or it would be easy for us so to number in any of the ways of actual transour days as to secure his approbation gression ? Beware, I beseech you, in whatever situation he might place my fellow sinner, how you longer trius, whether in the desk, or on the file with the authority of Omnipobench, or in the hall of legislation; tence. It is owing to his goodness in the field, or shop, or coupling that you have been spared to see tņe room. Those who are always com- beginning of this new year; it is plaining of their peculiar hindrances of the Lord's mercies, which you and temptations, and who are confi- have nevertheless trampled under
your feet. Stand out, I entreat you, Who can show a lease of another no longer against Him in whose hand year or day, or even moment? What your breath is. “If he whet his glit- multitudes now living will be in their tering sword, and his hand take hold graves, before this year closes. And on judgment," what will you do? who, where are they? Some of you whither will you flee ? " It is a fear- doubtless, who read this sermon, will ful thing to fall into the hands of the be found among the number. And living God.”
are you all ready for the summons ? A regard to our own present hap- Aged reader art thou ready? See, piness, presents an additional mo- but a few more sands are left. Thy tive to obedience. What is the sum sun is just setting. How do the keepof human enjoyment without piety? ers of thy frail house tremble, and A delirious dream of pleasure! The the strong men bow themselves! If last of the flesh, and the lust of the thou hast so numbered thy days as eye gratified for a moment! An of- to apply thine heart unto wisdom, if fice, a title, a table spread with dain. thy gray hairs are found in the ways ties, and all the other delights of of righteousness, all is well; but if sense-to what do they amount ? not, Ay, O fly to the ark of safety, “Vanity of vanities, saith the preach- while yet a ray of hope glimmers uper, all is vanity and vexation of spir- on the mountain's top. it. O how many thousands, after Busy mortal, now in the midst of great and sore travail, in the hope of life, how art thou numbering thy gaining worldly happiness have found days? I see thine abundance and that they have sown the wind, and hear thy self gratulations. But what reaped the whirlwind. Religion alone, it God should say unto thee, “ Thou can satisfy the cravings of an immortal fool, this night thy soul shall be remind. This alone has joys to give quired of thee ?” Ah, think how brit. which the world cannot take away. tle is the thread, on which thou reliThere are shadows more than e- est, and no longer boast thyself of tosough, but this is the only substance. morrow. “Behold, now is the acceptWould you be happy in life, then; ed time : behold, now is the day of would you find support under the salvation. sicknesses and sorrows of it; would My dear youthful reader, what you avoid the upbraidings of con- shall I say to you? So number your science; would you have a rod and days, that you may apply your heart a staff to lean upon while passing unto wisdom. Is it no concern of through the dark valley-so number yours, that so many will certainly your fleeting days as to apply your die this year? Can you claim exheart unto wisdom. Go to Christ emption on the ground that you are by faith as an Almighty Saviour ; too young to die? Go then into the wash in the fountain which he has nearest grave yard, aud “ Ask lombopened and rejoice in the hope of stones, they can tell.” Gird up the the glory which he has revealed. loins of your mind. Watch and be Another powerful motive to an sober.
sober. « Be ye also ready, for in immediate attendance on the duties such an hour as ye think not the Son of religion, is found in the extreme of man cometh. And what I say brevity and uncertainty of life. Go unto you, I say unto all, watch." to now, ye that say, to-day, or to-mor- The last motive to christian dilirow, we will go into such a city, and gence which I shall mention, is drawn continue there a year, and buy and from the world to come. The state sell and get gain : whereas ye know to which we are hastening is an eternot what shall be on the morrow. nal dwelling, and every thing depends. For what is your life? It is even a upon the improvement of this littlespan vapour, that appeareth for a little of life. There is not another period of time, and then vanisheth away.' probation. No other days will be given
us, 'to number' after death. Once tional pleasure, no legitimate delight ; lost, and who can speak the rest ? and as they are more exempt from Let us therefore waste no more pre- anxiety and pain than other men, cious time, but do whatsoever our their sum total of happiness is greater, hand findeth to do with our might. aud they may, in the best sense of the So that, whether this shall be our word, be fairly said to inherit the last year or not, we may still be earth.*** Now all this is in itself unworking out our ósalvation with fear doubtedly true; and as an explanaand trembling, and that when he tion of the passage, is plausible and who is the believer's life, shall ap- ingenious, but it does not I apprehend pear, we may appear with him in reach the meaning our Saviour inglory.
tended to convey.
If we substitute the word land for
earth, we come at once to what is For the Christian Spectator. confidently believed to be the only Exposition of Matthew v. 5. true exposition of the verse. It will
then stand thus : Blessed are the Blessed are the meek, for they shall meek, for they skall inherit the land, inherit the earth.
that is, the land of promise-:he It is conceded on all bands that heavenly Canaan, of which the earthly the language, they shall inherit the was only typical. In support of earth, is not to be understood literal- this interpretation of the passage, it ly; for of all men the meek are in a may be observed that the Greek word world of bustle and strife, the least here used, is in the New Testament calculated to acquire or retaiu exten- commonly translated "land ;' and sive earthly possessions. But sup- the Septuagint usually has the same pose they were to endeavour to do term to express what is rendered by it; the effort would necessarily imply the word “land' in our version of the an earnestuess after the things of this Old Testament. Again ; to speak life and an entire devotedness to of saints as inheriting the land, is a them, which is elsewhere forbidden mode of expression which frequently in the most decisive terms and decla- occurs in the scriptures, and in cases red to be wholly incompatible with where the writers evidently wish to the existence of the moderation, designate heaven, as primarily and heavenly-mindedness, and other chris- truly the land of blessedness to the tian graces enjoined upon all true be- people of God; for example, Psalm lievers. Besides, this interpretation xxxvji. 26 : • The righteous shall inis contrary to what we know to be herit the land and dwell therein forevthe fact, and is therefore certainly noter.'—Finally; the blessings specified the true one.
Hence most Conimen- in the other beatitudes are all of them tators are agreed in understanding the spiritual. The characters designaLord Jesus as here pronouncing the ted are to enjoy the kingdom of meek to be blessed because they pos- heaven ;' to be comforted;' to 'be sess the disposition which qualifies filled with righteousness ; to obtain them for the enjoyment of the boun- mercy;' to see God ; and to be ties of providence. Among those called the children of God.' There who advocate this opinion, is Bishop is therefore, from analogy, concluPorteus.“ By inheriting the earth, sive reason for believing, that the says this author, " be [Christ] meant blessing here declared to be connected inheriting those things which are, with meekness, like those pronounwithout question, the greatest blessé ced upon the other christian virtues ings upon earth,-calmness and com- mentioned in the context, is wholly posure of spirit, tranquility, cheerful- spiritual; and that our Saviour has ness, peace and comfort of mind." in this passage no reference whatever “ The meek are excluded from no ra- * Porteus' Lectures, p. 83–4.
to earthly possessions, nor 10 any receive the promise, but are disposition or state of mind as quali- pelled to wait in the grave, in a state fying the subject of it for the enjoy- of insensibility, for all who come afment of temporal things. N. C. ter them. God having provided
that they without us should not be
made perfect. For the Christian Spectator.
The Roman Catholics have conExposition of Hebrews xi. 39, 40. sidered this passage as affording proof And these all, having obtained a
of a purgatory, where the souls of
believers are detained until the regood report through faith, received not the promise : God having that all the blessed should enter heav
surrection : God having provided provided some better thing for us,
en together. that they without us should not be made perfect.
To ascertain the meaning of the
apostle in the passage before us, it is This passage occasions considera- necessary to determine the object of ble perplexity in the minds of com- the promise of which he speaks. Is mon readers. The learned also have it the promise of eternal life ? Has differed in their explanation of it. the apostle in this part of the chap
We might naturally suppose that ter, any allusion to the future world? the apostle, after following the ancient The context shews that he has not. believers through their conflicts and And if not, then the Priestlians and triumphs, would speak of their en Catholics have their foundation destrance into the world of glory. Having troyed. Paul in this Epistle is confinished his account of the whole, trasting the Old and New dispensawhat should we more reasonably ex- tion, and shewing the superiority of pect than that he would pass to their the latter to the former. This he does reward? Many readers have, there- in a masterly manner in his view of fore, viewed the apostle as speaking the Authors of the two dispensations, in this passage of the world to come. --of the rest for the people of God, But they are surprised to find that provided in each of the priesthood the reward is withheld. Justead of employed in them,-and finally, of reading and these all, having ob- the objects of their faith and their tained a good report through faith, motives to holy obedience. This received the promise'--they find chapter is upon Faith. Having rep" they received not the promise : resented the ancient believers as doGod having provided some better ing wonders through faith, he now thing for us that they without us comes to his argument, which is, that should not be made perfect ;"—a rea- notwithstanding all the extraordinary son which they do not understand, things they did, the Old dispensation and which affords them no satisfac- is still inferior to the New. Why? tion. The 13th verse, say they, is Because they received not the promplain The promises there aliuded ise. What promise ? The promise io are of a better country-an heav- of a Saviour. Their dispensation enly, and not to be obtained by any was dark. They had the promise of in this life. But here it is asserted a Messiah and a better state of things; that the people of God had not re- but the promise was not fulfilled to ceived the promise, after they had them, God having designed this fulobtained a good report through faith. filment as the glory and blessedness
Those who believe that the soul of the new dispensation. The promsleeps until the resurrection, have ise then to which the apostle has refeclaimed this passage as favouring their rence was that of the Messiah. With system. Here, in their view, the this view of the subject, the passage apostle expressly declares that the is perfectly clear : And these all Old Testament saints did not, at death having obtained a good report
through faith in a promised Messiah witnessed the fulfilment of what was received not the promise--did not live to them only prophesy, that theyto behold the actual arrival of the the church under the old dispensaMessiah : God having provided some tion without us should not be made better thing for us, under the new perfect. dispeusation, who have ourselves
For the Christian Spectator. usual awakening in several parts of Mr. Editor,
Yorkshire. But in general we are not The following interesting letter of the favoured with a net to enclose a great Rev. John Newton, whose praise is in multitude of fishes at once; we are all the churches, has never, I believe, mostly anglers, and would be thankbeen published. It has remained some
ful if now and then we can take one. time in my possession in the form of a manuscript copy, and it is now submit
Yet I hope that upon the whole, the ted to the press, that the admirers of success of the gospel is upon the inthat excellent man may be gratified crease among us, both as to the with this relic of his piety and worth.
spread and efficacy, especially in the It was addressed to the Rev. Mr. Rob
establishment. The Lord adds to bins of Plymouth, Mass. G. B.
the number of the Gospel preachers London, 19th April, 1794. every year. Promising young men Rev. and Dear Sir,
are ordained; and now and then we
hear of one who is brought to the I am afraid you will think me, as I knowledge and experience of the certainly think myself, very tardy in truth, after having been long a blind not sooner acknowledging your obli- leader of the blind. London is highging favour which I received in Sep- ly privileged. Mr. Romaine and tember last. I have often proposed myself indeed are the only parochial it, but it is not worth while troubling ministers. But we have curates, lecyou with a detail of the multiplicity of turers, and ministers of chapels ; mabusiness,engagements, and hindrances ny of them are men of zeal and abiliwhich have hitherto prevented me. I ties, and are attended by large auditotrust my heart rejoiced in the accountries, I trust with good effect. There of the gracious revival with which the is likewise much preaching by irreg. Lord has visited Plymouth under ulars and itinerants, and I believe your ministry, and many have re- much good is done by them. But as joiced with me, for I have seen the the path is easily open to any who purport of it in a periodical paper. may think themselves qualified to May it spread through all your states, tread in it, there is a great mixture. and penetrate westward, till the pres- Some attempt to teach others who ent desolate wilderness shall become themselves have need of being taught. as the garden of the Lord, and blos. They have neither the right message som like the rose.
nor the right spirit, but are rash and There has been a monument of the self-confident. ' So that novelties, er. like kind in a part of North Wales, rors, strises, and divisions are multiwhich I believe has not wholly gone plied. It was so you know in the off, and I am assured that in many per- Apostles' times, and therefore we sons, the impression though sudden, need not wonder it is thus in our days, was not transient, but has produced and in our land, where every man is an evident and abiding change. We at liberty to do that which is right in hear likewise at present of'a more than his own eyes.