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Apostle in all his dangerous enterprises, was present at his several arraignments at Jerusalem, and accompanied him in his perilous voyage to Rome, where he assisted him in those ministerial offices of which the Apostle's confinement precluded his personal performance. This greatly endeared him to St. Paul, who owned him as his “ fellow-labourer,” called him “ the beloved “physician,” and “the brother whose praise “ is in the gospel throughout all the churches." It is probable that he did not leave the Apostle till the latter had finished his course and was crowned with martyrdom. The time and manner of St. Luke's death are wholly uncertain.

It is supposed that our Evangelist wrote his gospel during the time of his association with St. Paul, and that he derived great assistance from him in composing it. He has informed us (ch. i. 1-4) that he was not himself an eye-witness of the facts which he records, but that he received his narrative from those who were; from whence it is evident that he had other help besides what St. Paul could afford.

St. Luke's history which is entitled “ The “ Acts of the Apostles,” was doubtless written at Rome at the end of St. Paul's two years imprisonment there with which he concludes his memoirs. That our Evangelist was its author, appears from the antient Complutensian manuscript copy to which the name of St. Luke is prefixed, from its dedication to Theophilus, from some peculiarities of the style which identify its penman with that of the gospel, and from the testimony of all antiquity. The labours of our Evangelist in preaching

Gospel were doubtless very beneficial during life. But his evangelic compositions have

reached to successive generations. His Gospel and his ecclesiastical history have been and will be instrumental in the edification of the church to the end of the world. His praise therefore in the Gospel, on account of the eminent services which he hath done for the cause of Christianity, will be acknowledged throughout all the churches of Christ, to the time of the consummation of all things.

The term “ Evangelist,” by which St. Luke is characterized in our collect, has both a more general and a more restricted sense.

In its more general sense it signifies a preacher of the gospel, one who proclaims to perishing sinners the

glad tidings of great joy;" in which application of the term every herald of salvation is an evangelist. But in its more restricted sense, it is confined to the four historians of the life of Christ. By his call to the office of an evangelist, in either of these senses, St. Luke became a physician of the soul. His former employment was of a most laudable and beneficial kind. But it is exceeded in dignity and usefulness by that to which he was afterwards advanced, as much as the soul exceeds the body in value. The responsibility, difficulty and labour attached to the profession of a corporeal physician are confessedly great; but they bear no comparison with that responsibility, difficulty and labour, which are attached to the office of a spiritual physician, a minister of the everlasting gospel.

We proceed now to the prayer which our collect founds on the call of St. Luke to be an “ evangelist and physician of the soul.” We beseech God, « that by the wholesome medi. “ cines of the doctrine delivered by him, all the “ diseases of our souls may be healed, through « Jesus Christ our Lord."

In this prayer moral disease is supposed to be epidemic; for we are all taught to implore a cure. This supposition corresponds with the general confession which is made by all the members of our church, that “there is no health “ in us.”

The church of Christ on earth is a hospital or infirmary, into which diseased souls are admitted by baptism for the purpose of obtaining a cure of their spiritual maladies. Many who are thus admitted derive no benefit from the charitable institution, in consequence of their refusal to take the medicine which is prescribed, and to comply with the rules of the house. Many of these are in a comatose or delirious state, and, of consequence, are unconscious of the nature of the place wherein they reside, and of the end proposed by their admission; and not

; a few give evidence of the awful effects which moral disease has produced on their understandings, by eulogizing the pleasures of their mansion, not under the notion of a hospital, but as a permanent abode in which they wish to continue, while their fellow-sufferers rend the air with groans of anguish. Some, however, among the numerous patients, are sensible of their diseases, know the gracious design of their reception into the church of Christ, and pray that all the diseases of their souls may be “ healed” by “the wholesome medicines” which are administered to them, and with this view submit thankfully to the rules which are given for their conduct.

There is an analogy between the diseases of the body and those of the soul. The various cures which our Lord wronght on the bodies of men during His abode on earth, are specimens and representations of the more stupendous miracles which He performs for the salvation of men's souls. The blind, the deaf, the dumb, the lame, the lepers, the paralytics, &c. whom He healed of their various infirmities, were, in their outward condition, what we all are spiritually; only it is to be observed, that our souls are affiicted not with a single disease only, but with all those calamities at once. Ours is a complicated case. There is not perhaps a bodily complaint that can be named, with which some disorder of our souls may not be found to correspond. Symptoms of lethargy, asthma, dropsy, &c. &c. are combined in every fallen soul.

. The health of the body consists in the vigour of its several constituent parts for the performance of their proper functions. And the same definition may be given of spiritual health. When the faculties of the soul fully answer the end for which they were created, it may be pronounced to be in a state of convalescence. What then was the end for which the rational soul was created? Was it not for the enjoyment of God and the glorification of His name? Let us feel then our spiritual pulse. Let us scrutinize the tendency of our affections, whether God be their object or not, and whether they beat with regularity and vigour. Do we respire freely and without obstruction the breath of Divine life, inhaling the gracious influence of the Holy Ghost, and exhaling gratitude, love, and praise, without difficulty or labour? Can we engage in spiritual exercises at all times without reluctance, and continue in them without lassitude?

Is our appetite for the bread of eternal life uniformly keen? Do we with facility digestit, and are we duly nourished by it? These and such like inquiries will determine the state of our souls, whether they be sickly or in health. And surely they will prove, that “ there is no " health in us.”

The dreadful nature of that spiritual disease, or rather of that complication of diseases, under which all mankind labour, is apparent from many considerations. It is not indeed felt by all, because in many cases it has produced stupefaction or delirium. But when, in the

But when, in the progress of the cure, sensibility is restored, the pain which is felt, and the bitter complaints which are uttered by the patients, (see Rom. vii. 24) sufficiently shew its dreadful nature. The rapidity of its progress towards its crisis, (which is certain death, unless the specific remedy be administered to check its progress) and the costly nature of that remedy, together with the manner in which it was prepared for use, testify the same.

The doctrine of the Gospel is compared in our collect to medicine. For as the latter, through the blessing of God, is the means of restoring health to the body under the pressure of disease, so does the former to the sin-sick soul. Hence, in the language of Scripture, those who undertake to administer spiritual advice and consolation, are called physicians, (Job xiii. 4. Jer. viii. 22) and our Lord has exhibited Himself under this character. (Matth. ix. 12.) The goodness of God in providing remedies for the relief or cure of our corporeal maladies in so great a variety of forms, in both the vegetable and mineral kingdoms, is very admirable. But the medicines provided for the soul demand higher wonder, love, and praise;

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