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tible em Lurred ation, O, and
ment, at has ny in-1 the of dis
property. He might thus tell him careful and humble-minded reader at one time, what sort of establish- of the sacred volume, cannot but ment it would enable him to main convey the idea of a continuance tain: at another, whether it would of consciousness after death. In be safe for him, with such a revenue, the first place, in our Saviour's arguto live in a certain degree of in- ment for a resurrection, an intermedulgence, to travel abroad, or to diate state of consciousness seems introduce useful institutions among to enter into the premises from his poorer neighbours at home: at which the doctrine of a resurrection another he might mention, whether is deduced. “God," said he, “ is a supposed enlargement of his ex not a God of the dead, but of the penditure would render the dis- living ; for all live unto him” (Luke covery of some new source of in xx. 38). What do we understand come necessary : and from these by this? That Abraham, Isaac, and scattered hints he might expect Jacob are dead, and yet living; that the young man would collect dead to us, but living unto God; a more just estimate of his probable nay, that all others who are removed condition, than could be commu from this earthly scene live unto nicated to him by a mere direct him likewise: for, as Dr. Whately exposition of the amount of his remarks in stating this side of the income. And may it not be, though hypothesis, “ If they were spoken of we would not press such a com as still living in another state, the parison to its details, that many like might be inferred of all men.” things which are not revealed in Indeed, the Scriptures elsewhere Scripture are yet so clearly inti- shew us that other individuals who mated there, that an attentive and are departed, besides those three humble student of the word of God patriarchs, are still living ; Enoch, may learn from these varied notices for example, and Elijah. Moses what, although by careless readers also is living : for he appeared on passed over, is really equivalent to a the Mount of Transfiguration, and direct revelation? And this is perfect conversed with Jesus. The saints ly analogous to the works of God in who rose from the grave at his crucreation; which convey everywhere, cifixion or resurrection are living. to those who will observe them, Can we believe, with these undenibut to none others, the clearest able facts before us, that they are indications of his power, wisdom, the only living persons of all the goodness, and moral government: generations that are past? or can and in both cases it is a course of we doubt that others also are parproceeding calculated to
takers with them of life and action? rage, and perhaps designed to re The remark of Saint Paul, when he ward, a diligent and continued said, “ To me, to depart and to be patience of investigation : for, as
with Christ is far better than to Dr. Whately elsewhere justly ob- abide in the flesh" (Phil. i. 23, 24), serves “the general rule of Provi. cannot convey, to an unprejudiced dence evidently is, that man should inquirer, any other idea than that, in be left to supply his own wants, his instance at least (and there is no and seek knowledge by the aid of hint of any peculiar privilege in his those faculties which have been case), absence from the body would originally bestowed on him; a di. be instantly succeeded by presence rect revelation being extraordinary with the Lord : and the promise of and miraculous; not the rule, but our Lord to his fellow-sufferer on the exception, and bestowed only the cross, “ To-day shalt thou be where specially needed.”
with me in paradise," (Luke xxiii. Now to us it appears demon. 43), confirms the same conclusion. strable, that there are various inti- Then, with respect to the parable of mations in Scripture which, to a the Rich Man and Lazarus.it clearly
it of ally this
intimates an immediate entrance The considerations
by which into a state of reward or punish- these reasonings are met are, chiefly, ment, suitable to our previous cha- that some parts of them admit of a racter. It is true, indeed, that it is different explanation—not, that they a parable ; but let the parables of are in themselves unscriptural or our Saviour be examined, and it untrue. One positive argument, inwill be found, that, even though the deed, is urged against them from the incidents should be conceded to be phrase of “ sleep," as applied to “tictitious" (for that is Dr. Whately's death in Scripture; whereby a state epithet), they are all possible. They of insensibility is said to be directly are adapted to a state of things implied: whereas it would be just as actually existing, and do not refer possible that the figure was adopted to either places or conditions that by the sacred writers in reference to are merely imaginary. The scene another peculiarity of sleep-nameof the good deed of the Samaritan ly, that it is a temporary condition, traveller is delineated with scrupu- which speedily passes away, as that lous exactness: the circumstances of death will in the morning of the connected with the marriage of the resurrection. But we do not think nobleman's son, and the departure that the expression bears on the subof the chief to another country to ject either way; the word sleeping receive the royal dignity from a being used, like “departing" and foreign court, and return, are all “ dissolving," to shew the tranquil borrowed from known practices. and blessed dismissal of the believer And, if such was our Saviour's habit; to the heavenly world. if, when he is said to have invented On the whole, however, the epiincidents, he uniformly refrained tome which Dr. Whately has given from inventing scenes, manners, of the arguments on each side of the and conditions of being likewise; question, is, as might be expected why should we fancy that he dea from him, ingenious, and we do not parted from that habit in the single say otherwise than candid ; but he instance of the parable to which does not allow force enough to those we are now alluding? All worlds positive intimations of an intermewere alike under his eye; and, diate state of consciousness which whether he chose to lay the scene he cites from Scripture. Indeed, of his parable in this world, or in when he sums up his opposite arparadise, or in heaven, or in bell, guments on the intermediate state ihe state of all these, and of all by the remark that other parts of creation, were equally " The notion of the soul, when sepafamiliar to him; and the imagined rated from the body, entering immedidistance of the scene affords not the ately on a state of enjoyment or suffering,
which is to last till the resurrection, has slightest cause for supposing that he
at least as many reasons against it, as for did not adhere in this, as he did in it, in Scripture” (p. 74), all other cases, to actual realities. we must reply in his own words, We therefore conclude, that here that “this arithmetical mode of also, even allowing the incidents ascertaining a writer's sentiments to have been imaginary, the scene by combining the passages on oppoand its circumstances are all accord- site sides” had never occurred to us. ing lo truth; so true, that no clearer The learned writer does not need idea could be conveyed to our limit our suggestion, that arguments reed understandings of the condition quire to be weighed, not numbered; of souls after death. We need not and that, in weighing them, one that add, that, if this be in any degree rests upon positive evidence is com
correct representation of the monly worth many that depend on case, it establishes the separate negative testimony. state to be one of consciousness We find Dr. Whately on many and activity.
occasions resorting to the plea, that
certain transactions were peculiar, though they may not amount to a
promised immediate admittance, be the
place in which just men made perfect,' to learn from such extraordinary ever with the Lord,'--or if it be the place dispensations ? Yet Dr. Whately or state into which good Christians pass
immediately after death, it is remarkable
that the word paradise is not the one com-
monly used in Scripture to convey either
“ The prophet Elijah (or Elias), we
o the Seed
of the Covenant, and under various
spoken of under the name, Hades.
opinion that the others, and connected with a
house of information on this subject:
overcometh will I give to eat of the
tree of life, which is in the midst of
with me in paradise," and St. Paul's
“ wish”) that to be absent from the
construed to mean that the dying Surely these remarkable facts, penitent should in a remote age, though 'singular and peculiar, and after our Lord's death, resurrection, CHRIST. OBSERV. No. 352.
ascension, and return to judgment, without comment: for thus shall we be taken up to heaven; and that the most gratify our readers ; most hoApostle should also, after a previous nour the writer, whose own pages are state of insensibility, be admitted to his best eulogium; and most graphithe same privilege; whatever other cally exhibit that remarkable man, objections may lie against this in- the subject of bis narrative, who terpretation, we must say that so deserves to be known in the South, loose a construction of specific terms as he was in the North, by far other seems to us, in Dr. Whately's own characteristics than those which are words elsewhere," a use of language currently associated with his name which destroys the purpose for which in the Bible Society controversy. language was designed-namely, to The following are some of the princonvey a meaning."
cipal passages of Dr. Chalmers's We must suspend the argument powerful description. for the present; but we purpose re “ I need not say, to this assembly of suming it in our next Number, when mourners, in what more striking and imwe intend also to notice some other pressive form the lesson has been given to of Dr. Whately's “ peculiarities"
It is just as if death had wanted to and “ difficulties,” and especially sovereignty, and for this purpose had se
make the highest demonstration of his his very dangerous, and we are per lected as his mark, him who stood the suaded unscriptural and unfounded, foremost, and the most conspicuous in the views relative to the Christian Sab.
view of his countrymen. I speak not at bath.
present of any of the relations in which he
stood to the living society immediately
around him-to the thousands in church
varied rounds and meetings of Christian A Sermon, preached in St. George's philanthropy, he either guided by his
Church, Edinburgh, on Occasion counsel, or stimulated by his eloquence. of the Death of the Rev. Dr. An
You know, over and above, how far the
wide, and the wakeful, and the untired drew Thomson. By the Rev. T.
benevolence of his nature carried him; CHALMERS, D.D. Glasgow. 1831. and that, in the labours, and the loco
motions connected with these, he may The name of Dr. Thomson having
be said to have become the personal
acquaintance of the people of Scotland. hitherto appeared in our volumes
Insomuch, that there is not a village in chiefly in reference to an unhappy the land, where the tidings of his death controversy, in which he bore a con have not conveyed the intimation, that spicuous part, it is truly grateful to
a master in Israel has fallen ; and I may
also add, that such was the charm of his our feelings-more especially now
companionship, such the cordiality lighted that he has quitted a world of tur
up by his presence in every household, moil and controversy, and entered that, connected with this death, there is, upon that blessed state where all at this moment, an oppressive sadness in
the hearts of many thousands even of our is peace-to sketch those bright
most distant Scottish families. And so, a features of his portrait which will national lesson has been given forth by abundantly relieve any shades which this event, even as a national loss has in some instances hung around it. been incurred by it. It is a public death
in the view of many spectators. And This pleasing office we are enabled
when one thinks of the vital energy by to discharge by means of the funeral which every deed and every utterance were discourse now before us, which is one pervaded – of that prodigious strength of those striking, splendid, and thril
which but gamboled with the difficulties
that would have so depressed and overling compositions, which Dr. Chal
borne other men—of that prowess in conmers is able, apparently almost with flict, and that promptitude in counsel with out effort or premeditation, to throw his fellows of that elastic buoyancy which off, for the mingled delight, instruc ever rose with the occasion, and bore him tion, and edification of his readers. onward and upward to the successful ter
mination of his cause—of the weight and Our only task shall be transcription, multiplicity of his engagement; and yet,
as if nothing could overwork that colossal panionships of life, is found to mingle,
when the pastor of the church becomes
he sits enthroned over the affections of a
and he who, sturdy and impreg city became a city of mourners--we could