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I am naturally led to conclude es of Christ.” In him every prothis subject, by observing, that phecy, precept, promise and truth the importance, efficacy and ne- is centered. His character and cessity of the imputed righteous- work as a Saviour is held forth in ness of Christ, shows how much a variety of lights in the sacred it is the duty of all ministers of oracles, and in every opening or the gospel to make it the main and view that is given us, so to speak, leading theme of their sermons. of the dispensations of Divine The preaching of the gospel is by Providerice and grace, he is the the apostle Paul, in a very just chief figure, or the termination of and expressive manner, styled the prospect. If, therefore, we preaching “the unsearchable rich- would know what esteem is due to
our Redeemer in our hearts, and is a small matter what a man believes, if how high a place he ought to hold his life be good." The assertion might, in our views of religion, let us obperhaps, be allowed, if it did not contain serve the regard paid to him by à foolish and unreasonable supposition, the sacred writers. They derive that a man may believe wrong, and yet almost all their motives to every lead as good a life as he that believes right; the contrary to which will always moral duty, from what he hath be expected by him who gives credit to done, and is still doing for us, and the word of God, that his people are seem to delight even in the repeti. "sanctified through the truth,” As to tion of his name. I am persuaded Socinians and Polagians, who are the
those who are accustomed to the greatest opposers of the truths above de. fended, I never did esteem them to be devout and serious perusal of the Christians at all; so the consequence, word of God will not reckon it with regard to them, may be easily ad- “ enthusiasm,” when I say, that mitted. But it will be thought hard to say these writers appear to be warmed the same thing of the Arminians. However, if the righteousness of Christ is the only
and elevated above their ordinary groun of our justification, and the re- measure, when they celebrate his ception of him in this character the true salvation; and that both in the Old principle of sanctification, I do not see
and New Testament, wherever we how we can avoid concluding the danger of those who act upon any other plan. meet with any passage singularly And yet I am persuaded there have been, lofty and sublime, there we may and are many good men among them : be sure that Christ the Redeemer which may be accounted for in this man. is the immediate theme. ner, that their hearts are better than their
Justification by the free grace of understandings; and they are habitually under the government of principles, God, through the redemption that which, through some mistaken views, and is in Christ Jesus, was the docgroundless fears of their abuse, they speak trine taught among Christians, in of more sparingly, or rather seem to esla. blish the contrary positions. The proof church. And their departure from
the earliest and purest ages of the of this assertion I take from their own writings, particularly from the difference it was the prelude to that univerbetween their sermons and other dis. sal corruption of faith and wor. courses, and those forms of prayer which ship, that relaxation of discipline, they have drawn up, and not only recommended to others, but left behind them
and dissolution of manners, which as a witness of their own exercise in their took place in the ages following: closets. If they be supposed to feel the It is also very remarkable, that sentiments which they express in their this doctrine was always fully and prayers, it can easily be made appear, that distinctly taught in those churches ihese sentiments can only be dictated by the doctrine of free grace. If what they which never submitted to the tysay of themselves be true, in its natural ranny, or received the corruptions and obvious meaning, and if they believe of the Romish Antichrist; I mean it, which charity obliges us to suppose, it the churches of the Piedmontese must be altogether vain to lay the least Blress upon their own righteousness for valleys, which, by so many juditheir acceptance with God.
cious writers, are supposed to be
the two witnesses mentioned in the necessity of pardon through the Revelation, who fled into the wil- . righteousness, and renovation by derness from the persecution of the Spirit of Christ. This would the beast, and prophesied in sack- make a far greater number of those cloth.
who call themselves by the name The accounts which have been of Christ, Christians indeed. And transmitted to us of the principles the visible efficacy of his doctrine, held by them, long before the re. would be a sensible demonstration formation, plainly show, that they of its truth and divine original. maintained this doctrine froin the If these truths are not contradictbeginning. And as
as it is well ed, it may be safely said, that they known that the reformation took are by many kept more out of view its first rise from the gross and than formerly. And surely we scandalous application of the doc- have no great cause to boast of our trine of merit in indulgences, so improvements in the preaching all the reformers, without excep- art, if its goodness is to be detertion, were, strenuous assertors of mined, like that of a tree, not by free grace. This was reckoned its blossoms, but its fruits. by them “ articulus stantis aut ca- There is one observation which dentis ecclesiæ,” by which the may satisfy us, that the preaching church must stand or fall. Parti- of the cross of Christ will most cularly, our reformers, in both effectually promote real reformaparts of this island, agreed in tion. It is, that those preachers preaching the same doctrine, and who (to say no more) approach the eminent piety of our fathers is nearest to making our own merit a standing evidence of its force and obedience the ground of our and efficacy.
acceptance with God, very seldom, It doth not, perhaps, become, if ever, give any alarm to the conand probably it would not be safe, sciences of their hearers. Let for me to enter into a particular them recommend ever so pure and examination of the manner of high a standard of morals, they preaching in the present age; and are heard without fear, and, if therefore my reflections upon that they preach elegantly, with pleasubject shall be very few and ge- sure, even by the most profligate. neral. What is most obvious in To such preachers, all vain worldcur present situation, and what ly-minded people, usually attach ought to affect Christians with themselves, where they have not most concern, is, the great preva. cast off the very form of religion;
ce of infidelity. This is the but most part of serious Chrismore surprising, that we have ne- tians, together with professing hyver wanted, and do not at present pocrites, who cannot easily be diswant, many able and eminent wri- tinguished in this world, always ters to stand up in defence of the follow preachers of another strain. gospel, and refute the change. It is easy to see the reason of this able and inconsistent reasonings from what hath been said above; of infidels, whatever form they there are none who set the strictfrom time to time think fit to as- ness and obligation of the law, the sume; and on whatever princi- holiness and justice of God, in so ples they pretend to build. But, awful a light, as those who believe I am afraid, the best defence of all there is no shelter from the sancis but too much neglected, viz. tion of the law, and the wrath of Zealous assiduous preaching the of an offended God, but in the great and fundamental truths of blood of Christ. Perhaps, I am the gospel, the lost condemned already ensnared and exposed to state of man by nature, and the censure, by affirming that there
LIFE OF THE APOSTLE JOHN.
are among us preachers of differ- ' From the Cincinnati Standard. -ent strains. But it is so certain a truth, that I cannot deny it; and so important, that I will not dis- The history of this holy aposguise it.
tle, as well as that of the others, Upon the whole, as the present is involved in obscurity. He was aspect of publick affairs, as the the son of Zebedee, and brother of state of the world, and character James the senior.' He resided at of the age, loudly call upon all of Bethsaida,* in Galilee, and was by every station to exert themselves occupation a fisherman. with diligence for the support and
John and James were distinrevival of truth and righteousness: guished for their fidelity, perseI hope the ministers of the gospel verance and boldness, in the cause will promote this end, by zealously of their master, who called them labouring to bring men to the sav- sons of thunder. ing knowledge of Christ, “the There were three, who enjoyed way, and the truth, and the life peculiar favours, and were admit-the foundation—the tried stone ted to witness many very interest-the precious corner stone,
the ing scenes in the presence of the strengih and security of the build- Saviour; of these, John was one. ing. To deny, explain away, or
He was present when the daughter neglect to impart the truths of the of Jairus was raised; at the transeverlasting gospel, is the way to figuration of Jesus on the mount; leave the world in wickedness; but, and saw his agony in the garden; by preaching them in purity, and indeed, he was that apostle who with simplicity, which, we have was peculiarly loved by Jesus. reason to think, will be accompa- This John, this beloved apostle, nied with “ the demonstration of was the only one, whose love and the Spirit,” sinners are reconciled courage were strong enough to unto God, the power of sin is bro- impel him to follow Jesus to Calken in them, the divine image is vary, and see him crucified, and formed in them, and upon these hear his agonizing expiring groans. truths their hopes of eternal life
Soon after the crucifixion of the must rest and depend. Let us be Saviour, John, and eight other ever ready to say with the apostle fellow apostles, returned to their Paul, “ God forbid that I should former employment of fishing at glory, save ili the cross of our
the sea of Galilee; but they soon Lord Jesus Christ."* And let us
abandoned this business for that of quicken our diligence, and ani- becoming fishers of men. John mate our endeavours, by express- * This city was situated near the north ing, with the psalmist David, our end of the sea of Galilee, on the west side, faith in the perpetuity of his king- between two rivers, not far froin the sea dom. “His name shall endure for shore, about eight miles west of Choraiever: his name shall be continued Jordan, and directly at the north end of
zin, which is on the east side of the river as long as the sun; and men shall
Bethsaida was five miles west of be blessed in him; all nations shall Capernaum,-four, north-east of Magdala, call him blessed. Blessed be the –12, north of Tiberias,-18, east of Cana, Lord God, the God of Israel, who lies in Galilee, in the territory of Naph.
--and 68, east of north of Jerusalem. It only doth wondrous things. And thali, a place remarkable for deer, and blessed be his glorious name for very commodious for fishing: . It was enever; and let the whole earth be larged and beautified by Philip the Tefilled with his glory. Amen and
trarch, who called it Julia, after its imAmen.”'t
provement, out of respect to a daughter of the emperor, Augustus Cæsar. It was
also the former residence of Philip, An* Gal. vi. 14. * Psal. lxxii. 17, 18, 19. drew and Peter.
commenced preaching the which was, the confiscation of progospel, and was viewed as a pil. perty; the criminal was put on lar in the Christian churches of board a vessel and transported to Judea. It is supposed he conti- some island selected by the empenued to labour here, till near the ror, and there doomed to perpetime of the destruction of Jerusa- tual banishment, or at least during lem, when he travelled into Asia the life of the emperor who deMinor, and preached for some signated the place. This latter time to the church in Ephesus. mode was the condition of St.
After his residence and faithful John. After the death of this ininstruction, in this place, he was, veterate enemy of christianity, it as he expresses it in Revelation, is supposed he returned to Asia banished for the word of God Minor, and there preached and and for the testimony of Jesus,” lived to the age of almost a hunto the Isle of Patmos.* This
years, having survived all his bably took place in the time of the brother apostles. He is thought severe persecutions during the to have died a natural death in the reign of Domitian, one of the Ro- city of Ephesus, during the reign man emperors.
Banishment was of the emperor Trajan, and was not a punishment enjoined by the the only one who was not honourMosaick laws; but after the cap- ed with martyrdom. tivity, it was introduced among The time of John's writing is the Jews, and was in practice uncertain, though probably after among the Romans, who called it his return from exile, and near the “ diminutio capitis, because the close of the first century. It seems person exiled lost his citizenship, that he wrote at the express soliand the city of Rome a head, or citations of the churches in Asia citizen. There was also an exile Minor, where he had faithfully called “ disportatio," the effect of preached, and by whom he was
greatly beloved. * This island is in the Archipelago, which lies between Achaia and Macedo- futation of the errors propagated
One object seems to be the renia on the weat, and Asia Minor on the east. It is about 100 miles west of Mile. by Cerinthus and the Gnostics, tus, which is on the main, in the west part who taught many absurd notions of Asia Minor; 110 south-westerly from respecting God and Jesus Christ, Ephesus, and 620 miles north-westerly from Jerusalem. This is the place to
to accomplish which, he is more which St. John was banished, " for the particular and explicit in some reword of God.”
spects than the other apostles.
The following lines, copied from the Boston Recorder, are from the pen of Mrs.
SIGOURNEY. ON THE DEATH OF THE REV. ELIAS CORNELIUS, D. D. “ All ye that are about him, bemoan him; and all ye that know his name, say, Horo
is the strong staff broken! and the beautiful rod.”—Jeremiah, xlviii. 17.
And lo! that withering race, who fade as dew ’neath summer's ray,
And love immortal and refined glow on without a shade.
L. H. 8.
TRANSLATION OF THE LATIN HYMN,
In the March No. of Ch. Ado.
I adore, I implore that thou liberate me.
SKETCH OF THE LIFE OF REV. JACOB church of England; nor a PresbyGREEN, A. M.
terian, according to the church of Scotland. Neither am I a Congregationalist, as practised in
any (Continued from p. 102.) part of New England. I know
not of any publick Formula, that Of my Tenets or Doctrinal Senti
fully expresses my sentiments. ments.
Dr. Watts's Treatise, entitled As to church government, I am “ The Rational Foundation of a a true Protestant; but am nó Qua- Christian Church,” is, in my view, ker, or Anabaptist. Nor am I the most rational and scriptural, Episcopalian, according to the of any thing I have seen upon Ch. Adv.- VOL. X.