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And as he was desirous to prepare for what passive obedience he might be put upon, so he was loath to have his heart not well ordered or furnished, when active obedience might be called for at his hands. Tho' he never liv'd to preach any other than some private sermons, yet he was not unthoughtful of the time when publick ones might be expected from him. It may not be unuseful for me to insert one of his meditations here; it runs in such terms as these:
“? WHETHER I SHOULD BE A MINISTER? “I considered all objections which persons might make against it, and answered them every one. But one objection startled me more than the rest, to wit, personal unfitness, from my hebetude, or want of invention. To which I answerd, with minding that promise in Exod. iii. 12, 'Certainly I will be with thee.' And the beginning of ver. 18, ‘They shall hearken to thy voice.' And where God finds work, there he will give strength. I likewise considered i Chron. xxviii. 10. 20, and Mat. xxviii. 19, 20, and Josh. i. 9, and Judg vi. 12. 14.
" And then I thought with myself that, as for 'living in a remote part of the country,' I should be willing thereunto, if so I might do service for God, and bring glory to his name. And whilst I was musing on these things, I was melted into a frame that I thought heretofore I should never be in; namely, “humble submission to the good pleasure of God, however he should dispose of me.' I knew that, though I were reproached for what meanness I should this way be exposed unto, there is an answer in Rom. i. 16, and in Mark viii. 38, and in Psal. xxxi. 19, and in Prov. xvi. 7, and in Psal. xxxvii. 5, 6. So we the Apostles, 1 Cor. iv. 3. 9. If I serve Christ, God will honour me—John xii. 26."
Every one must own that, however such things as these, in an old man, may be below our admiration; yet, in a young man, that out-lived not the years which the nodes of the moon take to dispatch a revolution, they deserve a memory among them that may be edified by such exemplary practices. Indeed, he was himself extreamly unsensible of the least worth or shine adorning of him; and in his whole deportment he discovered a modest, an humble, and a reserved mien; which might be reck’ned to bear little proportion with his other accomplishments, were it not that the more gracious men are, the more humble they always are; and they are the fullest and richest ears of corn, which most hang down towards the ground. But while he in a sort wronged himself, to escape the bane and blame of pride; it is a piece of pure justice in the survivers, to embalm the name of a person thus desirable, since he is gone thither where he has no chaff to take fire at the sparks of our praises.
Sic oculos, sic ille manus, sic ora ferebat ?* Such a young man as this it is, that the church of God is now deprived of! What a blessing might his living have proved unto the world! But as the long-liy'd patriarchs, before the flood, have still that clause introduced of them, "and he dyed;" which clause awakened and converted a person of quality, who came in occasionally while the minister was reading the fifth chapter of Genesis to the congregation; so I must now say
of the short-liv'd person whom we have been paying our last respect unto, he lived thus long in a little time, "and he dyed."
* Such was his glance, his gesture, and his mion.
Before I break off, I must relate,
III.—HIS DEATH. Too soon and too sad a thing for me to mention without sighing, "Ah, my brother!" in my lamentation over it. He had contracted an universal 3 habit of body; which was attended with a particular generation of ill humours, where the os ileon and os sacrum joyn; from whence it fell into his thigh, until there was a very large collection of it there.
There was an incision, with mature advice, made into the tumour, about a month before his expiration, which gave good hopes of his recovery into a capacity of serving the church of God; but the circulation, which was cow given unto the putrid juices which his blood, through his continual and sedentary studies, had been annoyed withal, soon enkindled a fever, which burnt asunder the thread of this pious life.
One might suppose that such a "walk with God” as the reader has Dewly had pourtrayed before him, should end in raptures and extasies of assurance; but I am to tell him, that this young person had them not. And there wanted not reason for it; for his natural distemper disposed him to what is contrary to joy; but his deep humility had a greater share in the jenlousies and suspicions which he would still cherish of himself. He was indeed so afraid of being an hypocrite, that he would scarce allow Litself to be called a Christian, and he did not care so much as to tell any of his own experiences, no, nor his inclinations, unless to one or two divines, Fho kindly refreshed him with their daily visits; and with them too he would uphold his discourse only in Latin, if any one else were by.
Never did I see more caution against hypocrisie, than what was in him: and a certain self-abhorrence accompanying of it, caused to proceed from tie no expressions but those of an abased soul. When his brother, haying recited the terms of the gospel to him, with a design to obtain for him 2 renewal of his explicit consent thereunto, asked him, “Whether he did 1. judge himself sincere in that consent?” he only replied, "I should Link so, if it were not for the seventeenth of Jeremiah, and the ninth."
He was dejected, yet not despairing; and he discovered a wonderfully precious, when he had not a joyful frame. He was well made up of longings and breathings after all the “fullness of God," when he could not or would not pretend unto any confidence of his acceptance with the Lord.
In the time of his health, he had not been without the comfortable persrisions for which he “follow'd hard after God.” In one place, I find Ein saying (on such a day) “I had fear lest I should not love the blessed God; but yet I was sure I desired to keep his commandments.” Ancther time so: "For three quarters an hour, I pleaded earnestly for ssurance of the love of God unto me, and I said, 'As many as received Christ Jesus, to them he gave power to become the sons of God;' and I did receive Jesus Christ, as the free gift of God, and received him to
save me on his own terms: I chose him to be my priest, and prophet, and king. Now I begg'd of him that he would manifest his acceptance of me, and give me the spirit of adoption: I had then, I hope, some assurance." But when sickness came, he was loth to own a clear title to the rest of God: Yet before he died, he suffered some sober intimations of his hopes to fall from him. There was a good man in this land, whose last words yet were, “It had been good for me that I had never been born." The words of this humble, self-loathing young man were of another strain. In the last night that we had him with us, he would have his watcher to read, "the song of Simeon," unto him, "Now lettest thou thy servant depart in peace." and in the morning after, he said, “I have now been with Jesus Christ!" which, from such a little speaker as he, we could not have his explication of
In one of his last minutes, a faithful minister said unto him, “Find you not comfort in the Lord Jesus Christ:" To which he made only this discreet and humble answer: "I endeavour to those things which will issue in comfort;" and then he quickly surrendered up his redeemed and renewed soul unto him who had “loved him, and washed away his sins in his own blood."
Thus he went away to the heavenly society, where he is beholding the “face of God in righteousness," and solacing himself in the company not only of his blessed grandfathers and uncles, and all the "spirits of the just,” but of the amiable Jesus himself, which is by "far the best of all." His tears are all dried up, his fears vanished away, and his hopes more than answered in “joys unspeakable and full of glory.”
His elder brother having thus written of him, now satisfies himself in the duty therein done to God and man; and would keep waiting for bis own change, until thy free grace, O my God, shall give unto the most miserable sinner in the world an admission into Emmanuel's land.
One that had an acquaintance with him, did him the justice of weeping over his grave such an epitaph as this: Inclosed in this sable chest,
His rare devotion, such now seen,
A sign of ninety at nineteen,
Years but in bloom, grace at full growth,
Angels, you know and think bis worth,
Thus time, youth's glass, turn'd ere 'twas run,
And ages too, before begun.
Rest, glorious dust, and let thy perfum'd name
Sound in the trumpets of immortal fame.
For tho' Time's teeth Mausulaan monumente deface, His life, the decalogue unfolded ;
They'll never gnaw thy name which with the stars has A meat-off 'ring, his speech well moulded ;
place. Unto which we will add another, borrowed from another: Siccine, Nathanael, prosperas ad cælica ? Mentes Calestes tractat non benc Terra : sapis.*
Posuit, R. H.
FINIS. • Contributed by R. H. + Do you th us hasten, Nathanael, to your heavenly rest? Earth ill accords with heavenly minds: you do wiselt.
THE FIFTH BOOK
THE NEW-ENGLISH HISTORY:
IN FOUR PARTS.
The Faith and the Order in the Churches of Flow-England,
AGREED BY THE ELDERS AND MESSENGERS OF THE CHURCHES,
ASSEMBLED IN SYNOD8.
HISTORICAL REMARKS UPON ALL THOSE VENERABLE ASSEMBLIES,
A GREAT VARIETY OF OTHER CHURCH CASES,
OCOURRING AND RESOLVED IN THESE AMERICAN CHURCHES.
AUREA PERPETUA SEMPER DIGNISSIMA VITA,
[A WORTKY LIFE, WITH ENDLESS OLORY CROWNED.)
COMPILED BY COTTON MATI E R.
Non debemus nos de Regimine Ecclesiæ quicquam asserere, quod er Humanis Rationibus videretur asserendum, sed id quod ipso facto est & Christo Institutum, et in Ecclesia ab Ipsius Fundativne observatum.
A. SPALATENSIS, de R. pub. Eccles. [We ought not to assert in matters of Church Government every thing which mere human reason would dictate, but only such observances as were instituted by Christ himself, and practised in the church from its very foundation.-A. SPALATENSIS on the Christian Commonwealth.]