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The language of religion is-- cultivating a spirit of union in the “ Those who take the sword shall worship of God. Owhat a glorious perish by the sword;"--and what sight would it be to God and ever be the side on which we fight, angels, if in uttering the same dehe must be wrong who loses his vout words, we all breathed the same temper. The character, the genius, spirit, and felt the same love! How the spirit of the Gospel is love, is would such prayers, like the conunion with God and with one gregated strength of an army, another. It speaks of God as an assail the gate of leaven, and take universal Father;-of the world as it by that holy violence and force one vast family;-of Christ as having to which a gracious God opposes shed his blood to unite this great no resistance! Nor would such family- to unite them to God and union in religion terminate in itto one another, to graft them like self. It would gradually insinuate branches into the same stock-to itself into the circumstances of our pen them like sheep in the same fold daily life, and produce union upon - to infuse into them that newnature other points. It would gradually, by which they may become one under the Divine blessing, destroy with Him, and one with God.- selfishness, irritability, and suspiWe can iudeed, in this fallen world, cion, and make us love our neighbut imperfectly judge of the exact bour as ourselves. Soon we might character of the Disine dispensa- hope to see substituted, for the lean tions. If we would know what is and hollow language of ceremony the final result designed by God -- and politeness, the honest language we should lift our eyes to heaven, of warm and affectionate hearts. where the full consequences of the othen may we endeavour, that in Divine dispensations are seen, where one place at least, the ancient their work is done, their triumples are testimony to religion may be recelebrated. And in heaven all is peated, “ See how these Christians union—"no passion touches a dis- love one another!” “O may the cordant string.” The principles, same mind be in us which was also objects, tastes, are all the same. in Christ Jesus !" who became In the chorus of the universe no obedient immo death, even the voice is silent, and one song em- death of the cross, for a guilty and ploys them all --" Worthy is the miserable world. May we be thus Lamb who was slain.” Even the ready to suffer for the good of multitude which“ noman can uum- others! May we remember the ber" have no diversity of pursuit, declaration of the disciple whom or discordancy of feeling--all cast Jesus loved, and who best pertheir crowns before the same petuated his spirit and character throne, worship the same Lord, to the world! “ God is love, and and rend the concave of heaven be that dwelleth in love dwelleth with one harmonious shout. Such in God, and God in him." is religion where its full effects are
C. seen, where its full harvests are reaped, and where man no longer scatters among them the tares of To the Editor of the Christian Observer. human corruption.
I have, sir, but one more remark You were so obliging as to notice to offer. If it be the tendency of a small publication which lately the religion of Christ to produce appeared, respecting the Waldenunion, then may we who profess ses, in which it was said that they this religion endeavour to display are in distress, and that a Coma spirit of concord in our own cole mittee would be formed for the duct, and to cultivate it in those purpose of applying any sums of around us. And let us begin by inoney that might be offered for their relief. It is due to those land, in this matter, some doubts, benevolent persons who may have perhaps, may arise; because the intended to contribute to the alle word coach or stage does not occur viation of their sufferings, to state, in those Acts of Parliament which in the first place, that in conse- relate to the due observation of quence of a private letter from the the Lord's-day. However, as they Vallies to the respectable Minister strictly forbid all carriers, waggonof a French Protestant Church in men, wain-men, &c. travelling on London, a collection was made in that day, and enact " in general, that church, and amongst the mi- that no tradesman, artificer, worknister's friends, so that about 100l. man, labourer, or OTHER PERSON, was transmitted to Piedmont;-in shall do or exercise any worldly the next place, that efforts have labour, business, or work of their been made, and will in the proper ORDINARY CALLINGS, on the time and way be continued, with a Lord's-day;" it follows undeniably, view to recover a subsidy which that the driving of stages, or the the Waldenses have lost ;-and, like, though not explicitly, is virlastly, that it is not expedient to tually disallowed and condemned receive or transmit sums of money by those laws. At the time wheu to them until affairs on the Conti- they were made, stage-coaches nent present a new aspect, since were not in use, therefore could the Vallies of Piedmont form one not be specified; but as other of the passages from France into carriages are not suffered to be Italy, and may be therefore thrown driven on Sundays, the use of into a very unsettled condition in these is byevident implication forconsequence of the military ope- bidden. See 3d c. I. and 29th rations in those countries.
C. II, and by a later Act of 9th When the present difficulties are Anne, which licenses certain "hack. removed, it is hoped that means ney coachmen and chairmen within will be found to preserve their the dills of mortality,” there is no schools from decay, &c. that so exemption of stages, or other car. the light of Christian truth, which riages of any sort; which surely has for so many ages illumined would have been mentioned, had those Vallies, may not be at length any such indulgence been intended. extinguished.
-Would it not be advisable, Mr. S. Editor, to recommend associations
to be formed in all parts of the kingTo the Editor of the Christian Observer. dom, for the discouraging, by every
way and means, all those coaches Tue practice of driving stage- which make it a constant rule to coaches and other such vehicles travel on that sacred day? Might on the Sabbath-day, which is be- not the members of such associacome so common, not only in the tions particularly countenance and metropolis, but all parts of the support those coach-masters, &c. kingdom, is certainly a most dariny who should discontinue the pracoffence against the laws both of tice of so profaning the Lord's
Of the former, 1 day? The very threat of forming presume, there can be no dispute; such societies might be attended
are forbidden, in the with a good effect. But I only strongest and plainest terms, not drop this as a hint to be farther imonly to work ourselves, but to proved, should any of your readers suffer our servants, or our cattle, to or correspondents think the subject labour on that sacred day of rest. deserving notice. But concerning the laws of the
THEOGNIS, CHRIST, OBSERV. No. 161.
God and man.
REVIEW OF NEW PUBLICATIONS,
An Essay on the Character and Such would probably have been
practical Writings of St. Paul: the case, had her conduct been By HANNAH More. 2 Vols. influenced by no higher motive than pp. 290 and 348.
London: that selfish and secular ambition Cadell and Davies. 1815. which doats on huoran applause,
and circumscribes its views by the It was with peculiar satisfaction limited circle of present or postwe found ourselves called upon, humous reputation. Warmed by in the discharge of our critical that Aame which is kindled at the duty, to examine the volumes which sanctuary, and which animates its we are now to introduce to the possessor to exertions of pure
benotice of our readers. We felt en- nevoience, she disdains a comprocouraged to expect, from the name mise with ease or with fame. Never of their author, that our task would thinking she has done enough for be grateful to others as well as to God., and her fellow-creatures, ourselves : nor could we approach, while she retains the power of without emotions not easily de. doing more; she seems resolved to fined, another production from the fill up the measure of her usefulpen of a writer who has been edi- fulness, and to gild her declining fying the public for uearly half a years with the same lustre which century; and whose debilitated surrounds the period of her health state of health has suggested the and strength. painful apprehension, that in re.
Such were the impressions under viewing the latest of her works, we which we took up the volumes might possibly be reviewing her last. before us; and a careful perusal of
Indeed, we cannot sufficiently them lias fully convinced us thatMrs. admire that unwearied activity More runs no risk of impairing her which will not allow this distin- reputation by adding to the number guished person to accept her dis- of ber works. Time has in no charge from a service in which degree debilitated her intellect, or she has done so much. If to clouded her imagination : her eye have written much, and well, upon is not dim, nor is ber natural force subjeets of the highest interest; abated. The present, considered if to have presented the wisest les- as a whole, is certainly a work of sons in the form most attractive to no ordinary merit; and there are all classes of society, from the portions of it, which, for vigorous throne to the peasant ; if to have thought, apt illustration, and just, stocked our shelves with volumes, yet glowing expression, may chalin which good taste is associated lenge comparison with the best and with sound piety, just sentiment most finished of this author's comwith devotional feeling, and clas- posilions. sical refinement with didactic sa- The subject of this " Essay" is gacity;--if performances like these judiciously chosen ; and though could have satisfied her ardent the manner in which it is treated is mnd, she might have quitted the not wholly original, it is sufficiently field in the plenitude of her ho- so to discriminate it from produce nours; and, in a state of well- tions of a similar class, and to invest earned repose, have awaited her it with as much of the charm of renovat from her retirement on novelty as may recommend it to earih, to an incorruptible inherit- general perusal, “ The Portrait ance in beaven,
of St. Paul," as grapbically sketch
ed by the admirable La Flechere, their religion from the school of besides being an unfinished per- this Apostle to exhibit bim as formance, exbibits the Apostle sys- exclusively a doctrinist, and to tematically as “a model for Chris- cite and commend himn in terms tians and pastors ;” and the plan of which would encourage the belief, Mr. La Flechere's undertaking was that they considered bim rather as constructed with the express de- the mere promulgator of a creed sign, " that these two objects might than a preceptor of the theory and be so closely united, as to fall the practice of Christianity. The under the same point of view.” consequence is (a consequence to (Preface to Portrait.) There was which cach party has, though with room, therefore, for a work which very different motives, contributed), might so generalize the subject, as that St. Paul has been defectively to accommodate it to the use of appreciated both as a teacher and Christians in every walk of life. an example; and his writings and And such is the object of Mrs. his conduct have been abridged of More.
that influence to which they were On the importance of such a entitled in fixing the standard of work, in a variety of views, it is not truth and virtue. The author of necessary to insist. In addition to these volumes has formed her usefulness in forming the Christian conception of this distinguished character, we cannot but highly Apostle, not from insulated cirestimate its direct tendency to cumstances in his bistory, or derescue from misconception, and tached sentences in his Epistles ; advance into deserved notice and but from a connected view of the. estimation, one of the greatest cha- facts which constituie the former, racters that ever appeared on the and of the sentiments and feelings stage of human action. To us it which are developed in the latter. appears that no individual, certainly She takes the gauge and dimensions no one among the sacred writers, of his character, and contemplates has been more ingeniously misrepre- him under circumstances which sented, both by those who meant put the bighest and the lowest of to exalt, and by those whose object bis great qualities to the trial. In it was to depreciate him, than the performing this task, she never great Apostle of the Gentiles. Of loses sight of her professed objecthis enemies some liave, almost the improvement of her reader; sacreligiously, attacked himself as and it would be ditticult to say, though but partially, or not at all whethier she most excels in the inspired; and his writings, as they beauty of her drawing, or the might have done the effusions of a wisdom of her reflections; in deheated enthusiast, or the deduc. lineating the inodel, or persuading tions of an inconclusive reasoner. to the imitation of it. Others, without disputing his But it is time we should enter claims to inspiration, have enter. upon a more particular examination tained such confined notions of the of the volumes themselves. As St. purposes for which his Epistles Paul was a Christian and an Apostle, were written, as to deem them and eiery thing respecting him was merely local and temporary, and to be sought for in the canon of therefore of little value. On the Scripture; some preliminary steps other hand, the admirers of this appeared to be necessary, in order Apostle have not always shewn to possess the reader with a suittheir judgment, either in their able conviction in favour of that manner of estimating his character system, on the truth and excellence or conducting bis defence. It bas of which the propriety of what was been too much the custom, with afterwards to be stated, would in many who profess to have learned great measure depend. With this
view the first chapter is devoted to ful appetite of which his religion did the consideration of the defective. not furnish a justification. ness of Pagan morality, as evincing
“Besides this, all their scattered docu. the necessity of a Divine Revelation. ments of virtue could never make up a The existence of certain great necting tie. The doctrines of one school
body of morals. They wanted a con. qualities in the instances of indivi
were at variance with those of another. duals is admitted ; but it is very Even if they could have clubbed their justly contended, that the wisest of opinions, and picked out the best from the heathens bad no standard of a each sect, so as to have patched up a complete character. The following code, still the disciples of one sect would passage will shew the truth and the not have submitted to the leader of tendency of this observation :- another, the system would have wanted
a head, or the head would have wanted “ The lives of their great men abound authority, and the code would have in splendid sayings, as well as heroic
wanted sanctions. virtues, to such a degree, as to exalt our
“And as there was no governing system, idea of the human intellect, and, in
so there was no universal rule of morals, single instances, of the human character.
for morality was different in different We say, in single instances, for their places. In some countries people idea of a perfect character wanted con
thought it no more a crime to expose sistency, wanted completeness. It had their own children than in others to many constituent parts, but there was
adopt those of their neighbour. The no whole which comprized them. The
Persians were not looked upon as the moral fractions made up no integral.
worse moralists for marrying their The virtuous man thought it no deroga. mothers, nor the Hyrcanians for nut tion from his virtue to be selfish, the marrying at all, por the Sogdians for conqueror to be revengeful, the philo- murdering their parents, nor the Scy. sopher to be arrogant, the injured to be
thians for eating their dead. unforgiving : forbearance was cowar
“ The best writers seldom made use of dice, humility was baseness, meekness arguments drawn from future blessedwas pusillanimity. Not only their jus
ness to enforce their moral instruction. tice was stained with cruelty, but the Excellently as they discoursed on the most cruel acts of injustice were the beauty of virtue, their disquisitions geroad to a popularity which immortalized nerally seemed to want a motive and an the perpetrator, The good man was
end.-Did not such a state of comfort. his own centre. Their virtues wanted less ignorance, of spiritual degradation, to be drawn out of themselves, and this of moral depravity, emphatically call could not be the case. As their good for a religion which should“ bring life ness did not arise from any knowledge, and immortality to light? Did it not so it could not spring from any imitation imperatively require that spirit which of the Divine perfections. That inspir
reprove the world of sin, of ing principle, the love of God, the vital righteousness, and of judgment? Did spark of all religion, was a motive of it not pant for that blood of Christ which they had not so much as heard ;
which cleapseth from all sin."-Vol. i. and if they had, it was a feeling which pp. 6–10. it would have been impossible for them After some pertinent and strikto cherish, since some of the best of their ing remarks on the imperfections deities were as bad as the worst of and inefficiency of their mytholothemselves. “When the history of their own religion this pointed and beautiful conclu
gical religion, the author draws contained little more than the quarrels and the intrigues of these deities, could we expect that the practice of the peo- “ A religion so absurd, which had no ple would be much better, or more con- basis even in probability, and no attracsistent than their belief? If the divini- tion but what it borrowed from a preties were at once holy and profligate, posterous fancy, could not satisfy the shall we wonder if the adoratiou was at deep-thinking philosopher ;-a philosoonce devout and impure? The wor. phy abstruse and metaphysical was not shipper could not commit a crime but sufficiently accommodated to general he might vindicate it by the example of use to suit the people. Lactantius, on some deity; he could not gratify a sin, the authority of Plato, relates, that