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that “God worketh in us to will and to do of his own good pleasure;” that he believes the Holy Spirit to be God himself; and that his gracious influences are constantly manifested, whilst bis most glorious and perfect fulness was exbibited in Jesus Christ. Our enemy himself being judge, Unitarian and Christian moral. ity is identical. I can only mention one other instance of Mr. Thomson's ignorance, and that is, his unqualified assertion that Unitarians deny the divinity of the Epistles, and that all the vice which exists, is owing to that denial. So that, according to this great authority, all wicked men are of the Unitarian persuasion! This is a new light, truly. I had previously thought, that the individuals whom the laws of their country sentence to execution, were almost universally of the orthodox communion. At least I have read of the expression of their confidence, that through the merits of their Redeemer, they were certain of heaven's blissthat they felt the Spirit of God within them, assuring them of salvation. I have seen descriptions of criminals, whose face, it was affirmed by clergymen even, by a base prostitution of Scriptural language, “shone as the face of an angel.” I have known “ the consecrated elements of salvation” given to the malefactor-of ab. solution pronounced-and have heard, with loathing, of the gal. lows being thus converted into the stepping-place to eternal glory. But it seems all this was a mistake, and that it was the denial of the divinity of the Epistles, which caused the perpetration of enormities, and these which led the Unitarian minister to officiate at the fatal tree! This discovery is certainly an improvement, even upon Bishop Horsley's splenetic assertion, that “the moral good of the Unitarians, is sin.'
The Unitarians deny the divinity of the Epistles, do they? If such be the fact, how shall we account for the labour which many of that denomination have bestowed upon that portion of the New Testament? What shall we say of my revered friend Mr. Belsham, having published " The Epistles of Paul,” in 4 volumes, the result of the studies of thirty years of his valuable and useful life? What will even that accuser of the brethren, the Rev. William Thomson, plead in behalf of his ignorance, malice, and calumny, when he reads this sentence from the prelimary dissertation to Mr. Belsham's invaluable work, “ It may be justly concluded, that the Apostle carried in his mind, at all times, in all places, and to the end of life, a complete and infallible knowledge of the doctrine of Christ; so that whatever he taught or wrote upon that subject, is to be received as true, and as of DIVINE AUTHORITY."
I take my leave of Mr. Thomson, by informing him, that if he be careful to practise the precepts of the Saviour, as contained in the Evangelists, he will be much better employed than in bringing “ railing accusations" against others—that the parable of the prodigal son will read him and every other Calvinist a valuable lesson, both as a father and a Christian—that the parable of the talents will also prove to him, that the Almighty is not an austere being, reaping where he has not sown—that the sermon on the mount is the storehouse of Christian morality—and that he who frames his life on its commandments, will not be moved either by the ravings of fanaticism, or the roaring of many waters. --ARGUS.
Essay on the Reading, the Translation, and the Import
of Prov. xiv. 10.
“ Strict attention to the form and fashion of the sacred writings of the Old Testament, is not only useful and even necessary in the Translator, who is ambitious of preserving in his copy, the force, and spirit, and elegance of the original; it will be of great use to him, likewise, merely as an interpreter.
It may sometimes happen that an investigation of the text, of the rendering, and of the sense of a passage of Scripture, shall be favourable, at once, to the current reading and version of the author's words, and to the interpretation usually put upon them. . Whether this will be the result of the observations which I shall now make on a memorable aphorism in the book of Proverbs, I presume not to say, but leave my readers to determine.
6. The heart knoweth his own bitterness; and a stranger doth not intermeddle with bis joy.”
There seems to be no just occasion for disturbing the text of this verse. The various reading* which, ac
according to Kennicott, some few manuscripts exbibit, harmonizes still more with the translation in the English Bible than the reading found in the printed editions of the Hebrew Scriptures.
But the same agreement does not exist in the versions.
To begin with the LXX.; we cannot well reconcile what follows, either with the original text, or with any variations of it that have come under our observation: “ The heart of man is sensitive, bis soul is sorrowful; and when it is cheerful, it has no admixture of arrogance.t
As might be expected, the Arabic conforms, substantially, to the LXX. Not so the Syriac, which accords with
* See Houbigant's note in loc. “notum faciens, in voce Hiphil (i. e. evulgans.") In the Vulgate, “cor quod novit.
+ As literal a translation as possible is here given. The various readings in Holmes' and Parsons' editions have been consulted, yet without affording the means of a more intelligible rendering,
the rendering by King James's translators; as does also the Targum.
Luther's rendering is peculiar, but clear and significant: “ When the heart is depressed, no outward joy can afford relief.” [Wenn das herz traurig ist, so hilft keine ausserliche freude.]
Diodati, with his accustomed perspicuity, translates the verse exactly as we read it in our own Bibles. Thus, too, Castalio: “ Sua cujusque mens animi tristitiam novit, nec ejus lætitiæ, consors est alius.”
I subjoin Dathe's rendering: " Suam quisque tristitiam cognitam habet sed nec lætitiæ ejus consors fit alius peregrinus et perspectam."
The list might with ease be extended. It will not, I think, be denied that the plurality of translators concur in the rendering by the authors of the received version; a presumption and only a presumption of its correctness. When divines and scholars so various, in point of time, of situation, and, it may perhaps be added, of religious opinion, are perceived to make one and the same rendering of a passage, the fact inclines us to believe that they translated from the same text, and, though it be not absolutely decisive of the accuracy of their version, will entitle their concurrence to great attention and respect.
It might be too much to maintain, that these clauses admit of no other translations. I believe, nevertheless, that they will bear pone so readily as what I have copied from the received version: and its claims are fully established, in the event of its being sanctioned by the form and nature of the parallelism.
A striking variety exists in the style of Solomon's Proverbs. Some of them are clothed in plain and simple, others in metaphorical language; some take the shape of direct, others of indirect counsels. In some, two parallel clauses convey precisely the same meaning, though with a slight diversity of expression; in others, the clauses are reciprocally opposed, and hold forth a memorable and impressive contrast. Occasionally, as in the passage of wbich this essay treats, a sentence is propounded, either affirmatively or negatively: and in few words, a most comprehensive and weighty statement, illustrated in two but not dissonant examples; invites the reader's notice, asks his assiduous study, admits of a wide application, and authorizes, nay suggests, numerous conclusions, of no common interest and moment.
I presume the meaning of this proverbial maxim to be, that “most of the joys, as of the griefs of the human breast, can be known only by individual consciousness, and in a certain degree and sense are incommunicable."* The remark holds good of the bitterness of the heart occasioned by afflictions that come not within our control by some which strike upon our tenderest domestic and social feelings; it applies to parental disappointments, however they be produced: to abused friendship, to violated confidence, to the sense of personal guilt, the upbraidings of the soul, the pains of remorse, and a man's just and complete dissatisfaction with himself. On the other hand, the gladness of the heart, like its sorrow, can be but imperfectly estimated and shared by strangers. We may class our joys as we class our griefs, under two general divisions: those which affect our outward circumstances, and those which have their origin and their cause, as well as their seat, in the mind itself. Some are effects of our sympathy with our fellow men, on their external and honourable prosperity; some, again, belong to happy and highly rewarded parents. There are joys, too, experienced by the wise and good, on beholding the gradual, however apparently slow advances of knowledge, truth, and virtue, and of the numerous blessings in their train, and on anticipating their perfect and everlasting triumph. Among the joys which have a direct reference to our own circumstances and internal state, those of an approving conscience, of genuine penitence, of devotion, benevolence, and religious faith and hope, claim the first rank; and with these, as with all which I have enumerated, the world cannot interfere; in their particular modifications, they are the exclusive property of the individual possessor. It is a long but useful train of thought to which the aphorism conducts us. Studious of brevity, let me invite every reader to accept and pursue these reflections as illustrative of the fact, that
• The heart knoweth its own bitterness:
The French Genevan translation, in one of its latest editions, if not its last (1805], is here singularly concise yet familiar, modern and paraphrastical [Personne ne sent mieux que nous-memes l'amertume de nos chagrins, et la douceur de nos plaisirs.] In a preceding impression, it has been more successful, (Le cæur de chacun connoit l'amertume de son ame, et un autre n'est point mele dans sa joie. ] 1747.
Dialogues on Religión.—No. 4.
(Concluded from page 354.)
T. You are strangely fond of contradiction; whatever other objections bave been raised against instrumental music, I never beard it questioned that the organ had a powerful effect in elevating the devotional feelings. I must, once more, invoke Milton and his angels to my assistance, “Then crown'd again; their golden harps they take,
and with preamble sweet:
Melodious part, such concord is in heaven.' A. Ay; here you have preludes and symphonies. I hope you do not justify them in Church music. Your amateurs, and those who wish to be thought so, will always talk in your strain. But these are not to be appealed to on religious subjects. I would rather consult the multitude. All parts of public worship, as well as preaching, should be adapted to the apprehension and feelings of the poor; and I am sure, they would decide in my favour. As for your musical people, those who are regularly and scientifically instructed, are altogether taken up with the composition and execution; some in admiring and others in finding fault. One discord will derange all their devotional feelings, perhaps set them a cursing: and those who are not capable of criticism, attend to the performance, particularly the anthem, as to any other musical entertainment. I question whether you yourself ever felt as St. Austin did on such occasions;- “Whenever," says he, “it happens, that I am more affected by the music than the sense, I feel that I have committed a sin, and would rather not hear the singer."
T. I cannot say that I ever did; and I should hope for pardon, if my wandering thoughts took no worse a course. I do not know, how they could be better employed. Can any thing be more pure and holy, or more conducive to heavenly contemplation than a church filled with celestial barmony?
A. These are fine words, and would sound well at a .concert or oratorio. But do you really think, that you may introduce into Christian worship, whatever you please,