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to be influenced. They would, therefore, employ and hear men who preached Christ, with a design to carry their point against Paul, and render him contemptible. Thus the apostle writes, Phil. I. 15, 16. "Some, indeed, preach Christ even of envy and strife; and some also of good will-The one preach Christ of contention, not sincerely, supposing to add affliction to my bonds."
Opposition to the ministers of Christ, is not an accidental occurrence; but naturally results from the depravity of the human heart.” →Haynes' Valedic tory Discourse, 1818.
For the Hopkinsian Magazine. TESTIMONY OF A UNITARIAN MINISTER. Mr. Editor-I have been corresponding with Rev. —, formerly minister in, Mass. now settled in —, though not in the ministry. I think an extract from one of his letters ought to be published, as a confession of a Unitarian Minister. If you coincide with me in opinion, you may insert it in your Magazine.
Mr. professes to be a Unitarian; but rests his hope entirely, as he says, upon the atonement. He contends, in our correspondence, that there are many pious and faithful ministers among the Unitarians; but that many, especially of the younger class, are not so. Whether his opinion be correct or erroneous, we will listen to a part of his letter.
I had been persuading him to be more decided, and to leave behind him, before he left the world, a testimony to the truth. He writes me thus :—
"You must let me say, I never did, and, with my present views, I never will, throw my little weight into the scale of the new gospel, the scale in which a denial of all the peculiar doctrines of the Christian system, is found. I, in my whole soul, am as much opposed, as sincerely at war, with what is justly termed "the modern system of Theology," as any man on earth. I do not hesitate to say, it is another gospel, and not that which Christ and his Apostles preached. But, Sir, it will prevail. It must spread, till arrested by divine agency. It is studiously and ingeniously adapted to the feelings and wishes of unprincipled and impious men--and such men are pleased with it; give it their support, and readily enlist for its defence. A young man of popular talents, pleasing address, and Chesterfieldian politeness, becoming a candidate for the gospel ministry, has, in many places, no need of piety, no need of particular respect for religion. Piety would rather injure than assist him. He must write, speak, converse, and bow handsomely, study human nature, make himself agreeable, tell of his charity, rail at orthodoxy, dine with Herod, praise his wine, admire his situation, and, instead of John's imprudence and folly in telling the Governor he must not marry a brother's wife, be more polite, and extol the charms of Herodias, and be enraptured with her divine daughter-the most enchanting figure ever seen on a floor! He will soon be settled handsomely, and Herod will find him wine.
I am justified, fully justified, in saying, that the new system must be popular with a large part of the community, for various reasons. It treats all persons, of decent moral habits, as regenerated heirs of God, and joint heirs with Christ. It utterly discountenances revivals, as the deplorable offspring of ignorance and fanaticism, urging that a Regular orderly course of life leads to glory, with or without a profes
aion of religion-with or without the less startling vices found in common life-with or without any particular attention to religion or its duties. People of this description, attending public worship pretty well, paying their taxes willingly, and never meddling with religious disputes, I certainly know, are, in some places, and I doubt not in many spoken to, and spoken of, living, dying, and dead, as those who prayerfully endeavor to follow the Lamb-as vitally interested in Christ. This is not coloring, it is not painting; but a cool, deliberate, unvarnished statement of facts. Where this ministerial course is pursued, clergymen are sustained, caressed, encouraged and eulogized; nay more, they are warmly and ardently supported and defended by men, who live without God in the world. These, in some places, (God knows in how many) are the select, the prominent, the confidential associates and friends of professed ministers of Christ!"
The following just views of Mrs. Wright, a female Missionary among the Choctaw Indians, taken from a letter of hers which has appeared in the Charleston Observer, will show what are the trials most oppressive to the genuine missionary:
We have trials, we have discouragements, we have temptations, which can only be known by those similarly situated. By trials we do not mean the absence of many of those comforts which you enjoy. When travelling, the cold ground is our bed, and the wide spread heavens our canopy, when the barking of foxes, the howling of wolves, and the hooting of owls, is our midnight music; all this and more, much more, we do not call trials-and we are grieved to hear them called "Missionary trials." Our trials consist in the corruption which we find within us, and the depravity which we see around us. Oh! it is soul sickening to see what we see, and to hear what we hear: and when the precious Gospel is rejected-when the blood and righteousness of the Saviour are refused-when the solemn realities of eternity are made a mock and derision-these, yes these, are some of our keenest trials. It is easy to labor hard when our God smiles upon us; but when discouragements gather thick about us, and the heavens seem as brass over our heads; when, for wise and holy purposes, the Saviour is not pleased to follow with his visible blessing, the means of his own appointment: then, unbelief suggests a thousand things which distress and harrass us. The tempter is ever ready to watch a favorable opportunity, and he well knows our weakness and sinfulness. This people are unwilling to receive the truths of the gospel, and yet will readily believe any false and incredible statement. A white man had reported that a fox told him there would be no rain for four years, and then the world would be burned up. This was easily credited, until a heavy rain convinced them of the untruththey will then call it a white man's lie, and think no more about it. The influence of the whites is most pernicious. Could a spot be found, which could be secured to the Indians, unmolested by the whites, I should rejoice to have them removed to it; but where can such a place be found? They are melting before the white man, and they are dying in their sins. Ought we not to feel for them? Ought we not to be persevering in our efforts to retain some, at least, of these poor wanderers; and will you not continue to lend us your aid and your prayers-your believing prayers?
The Waldenses deserve to be mentioned with particular respect; they pass under different denominations, and their origin has been variously represented. They call themselves Vallenses, because they reside as in a valley of tears, in the valleys of Piedmont. They are sometimes denominated Albigenses, from Alby, a city in the southern part of France, where great numbers of them lived. From Lyons, they obtained the name of Leonists, and from the purity of their life and doctrine, that of Cathari, as the name of Puritans was afterwards given to some who professed the same principles. Some are of opinion, that the Valdensees, or Vaudais, existed in the seventh century, and that many, who then groaned under and opposed the doctrines and usurpations of the Church of Rome, retreated into the peaceful vales of Piedmont, where they might be free from oppression and tyranny, and securely enjoy their religion and conscience.
Other historians consider Peter Waldo as the proper founder of this sect. He was an opulent merchant at Waldum, a city of Lyons, & man of eminent piety and ardent zeal. About the year 1160, he employed Stephanus de Evisa, a priest, to translate from Latin inte French the four Gospels, and several other books of Scripture. He soon perceived how widely different these were from the doctrines and usages of the Church of Rome. Animated with a noble desire to dispel the darkness of superstition, and to diffuse the light of Divine truth, he relinquished his mercantile profession, distributed his estate among the poor, and commenced a preacher of the Gospel, in the year 1180. A multitude of well disposed persons entered into his views, adopted his religious sentiments, and formed a very considerable society. The ghostly rulers of the church soon became jealous of such a formidable antagonist, and endeavoured to undermine his credit and oppose his progress. Their attempts, however, proved ineffectual. His disciples multiplied rapidly; and such was the purity of their doctrine, the simplicity of their worship, and the innocence and sanctity of their behaviour, that they charmed all who beheld them with attention. Vast numbers were engaged to associate with them, and their reputation and influence daily increased. They formed themselves into religious assemblies, and established many of them in France and Lombardy. In a short time, they spread with an astonishing rapidity, through many provinces of Europe, rose to great credit, power and importance; so that, in the succeeding century, a dreadful war was waged against them by the Roman Pontiffs, the shocks of which they sustained with invincible fortitude. They fought upon principle, and for what they clearly apprehended to be the truth of God.
Their fundamental doctrine was, that the authority of Scripture is supreme, that this is the sole rule for judging in matters of religion, and that whatever disagrees with it, is to be rejected.
They declared that the decrees of Councils were only to be so far approved, as they might agree with the word of God. They asserted,' that the reading and knowledge of Scripture were necessary for all, and the privilege of the laity, as well as of the clergy. They acknowledged as Sacraments, Baptism and the Lord's Supper only, and affirmed that both priests and people ought to receive the last in both kinds. They condemned Transubstantiation, Masses, and Prayers for the dead, and the doctrine of Purgatory. They declared, that the invocation and worship of departed saints, was idolatry-that the Church of Rome was Antichrist, and the Whore of Babylon-that the Pope and Bishops were the Wolves of the flock of Christ, and were not to be obeyed. They condemned the celibacy of the clergy, the monastick orders, the superstitious dedication of churches, pil-'
grimages, and all festivals and ceremonies which are not mentioned in the gospel.
They held almost the same opinions as those who are now called Reformers and Calvinists.
Their rules of practice were rigid, and their aim was to reduce every thing in religion to the standard and discipline of the primitive Church.-Nisbet's Eccl. Hist.
From the Boston Recorder.
On Wednesday, the 16th January, the new Meeting-house at Castile, N. Y. was dedicated to God the Father, Son and Holy Ghost.-Sermon by Rev. John F. Bliss, the Pastor, from Gen. xxviii. 17. "How dreadful is this place. This is none other but the house of God, and the gate of heaven." The object was to show in what respects a house, devoted to publie worship, is the "house of God;" and that such a place, however humble, must be peculiarly solemn.
Such a place is the house of God, because God owns it by original title, having never conveyed away "the earth or the fulness thereof;"--because God fills it with his special presence; becauss it is to be used solely for the purposes of God; because it is emphatically "an house of prayer;" because it is the place specially appointed for unfolding and enforcing the truths of God; because here God manifests his saving power; because here he meets the congregation to see the effects of his truths on their hearts; because here he meets with his people in a very special manner in the ordinances; because it is the place more specially appointed for worshipping God than any other place; and because it is "the gate of heaven.”
Such a place is solemn, because God is here; because hereGod is cultivating his moral vineyard, and because of the manner in which he cultivates it; because of the purposes to which it is devoted; because life and death are here set before us; because here our destinies for eternity are fixed; because the truths here taught are solemn; and because every object is solemn.
Description. The house is 30 by 40 feet on the ground; 15 feet posts finished in the plainest manner on the outside. On the inside are 4 tier of slips, (between 40 and 50 in number,) a pulpit at the end, singers' seats at the right and left hand of the pulpit, and a handsome arch overhead. It cost about 400 dollars. The facilities of speaking, singing, hearing and enjoying public worship, are far greater than in a high house, with galleries and partitions to divide the sounds and produce confusion. The church ineluding E. Gainesville, which is connected with it, consists of rising of 80 members; and the congregation usually of not far from 300 people. Most of the people have come into the place within 5 or 6 years.
Quere 1. Are there not many congregations in our new settlements that would do well to take a similar course, make the accommodation of the congregation the first object, and postpone the construction of an elegant building till their wealth should increase so as to enable them to do it; and in fact until the more important objects of Christian enterprise were achieved?
Quere. 2. If houses for sinful creatures to humble themselves before God in, were more frequently so constructed as to be merely decent and convenient:-and if all the unnecessary expense usually devoted to houses of worship were devoted to charitable objects, have we not reason to believe it would be more acceptable in the sight of God?
Quere 3. What are we to think of a congregation that are able to devote 10, 20 or 30,000 dollars for a meeting-house, and who yet do next to nothing for benevolent objects and the spread of Christianity? Does pride, or Christian feeling predominate?
There are hundreds of rising churches and congregations in our new settlements that are scarcely known, and are destitute of a preached gospel, who by receiving $50, per annum each, might be aroused to effort and secure to themselves the stated preaching of the gospel. If the Saviour who still holds "the earth and the fulness thereof as his own property.
were to be our guide, should we not use less of his property which he lends us for the purposes of pride, and more, yea, much more of it for the purpose of promoting his cause?
1828, Feb. 16, Ordained Rev. BENJAMIN DALBEAR, as an Evangelist, at Craftsbury, Vt. by the Orleans Association. Sermon by Rev. Jacob N. Loomis.
1828, March 5, Ordained Rev. WARREN BURTON "as Pastor over the Third Cong. Church and Society," Cambridge, Ms. Sermon by Rev. Mr. Greenwood of Boston, from Revel. xi 15.
1828, March 12, Ordained Rev. GEORGE SHEPHERD as Pastor of the 1st Congregational Church in Hallowell, Me. Sermon by Rev. Edward Beecher of Boston.
1828, March 12, Ordained Rev. ASAHEL BIGELOW as Pastor of the Orthodox Cong. Church in Walpole, Ms. Sermon by Rev. Mr. Bigelow of Rochester.
1828, March 12, Ordained Rev. THEOPHILUS PACKARD, jun. as Associate Pastor with Rev. Theophilus Packard, D. D. of the Cong. Church in Shelburne, Ms. Sermon by Rev. President Humphrey, from Eccles. xii. 10.
THE BETTER LAND.
BY MRS. HEMANS.
I hear thee speak of the better land,
Is it where the feathery palm-trees rise,
And the date grows ripe under sunny skies ?—
"Not there, not there, my child!"
Is it far away, in some region old,
Where the rivers wander o'er the sands of gold?—
Eye hath not seen it, my gentle boy!
ERRATA-p. 49. 1. 4 from top-for respectable read respected.
p. 60. 1. 8 from top-for mistakes read mistake.