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lent institutions of our own nation, are not derived from their attention to the personal comfort, but to the moral and spiritual interests of men; and that it is the union of these objects which constitutes the true charity of the religion of Christ. As another source of the increased attention to religion in this country, Dr. Buchanan notices the laudable and general desire of communicating religious knowledge to other nations; and lastly points out two events, which are sufficient of themselves to consecrate the memory of the present reign, throughout all generations. The first of these events is the abolition of the Slave Trade, by which the reproach of Great Britain has been taken away, and a Jubilee given to Africa for ever. The other is, the institution of the Bible Society, by which our country may now be represented as standing in the delightful attitude of presenting the word of God to all the world. The sermon concludes by lamenting the irreligion,which, notwithstanding the preceding representation, prevails through a large part of the nation; warning us of the consequences of continued general transgression, by the example of Judah in the days of Rehoboam; and exhorting the nation to mingle with her thanksgivings for the blessings of the present reign, fervent supplications for the pardon of her sins, and for a spirit of general reformation and true religion. . The last of the three sermons before us, though not so immediately relating to the occasion which gave birth to them, is perhaps the most generally useful and important. The subject of it is the heavenly Jubilee, from Rev. xix. 9.: Blessed are they which are called to the marriage supper of the Lamb.” The worship of God and of “ the Lamb
slain from the foundation of the
world,” as constituting the nature of the employment and felicity of heaven, is the first point considered in this discourse. The second is an inquiry as to the character of those who shall be admitted to this celes
tial Jubilee. The reply to this important inquiry is taken from an examination of the parable of the marriage feast in the 22d of St. Matthew, and of the wedding garment which was required of every guest.
“Let us then understand,” says the pious author, “ that, the guilt of the soul cannot be expiated by works that we have done? and that he who dependeth in any degree on his own deeds for atonement, hath not the garment of righteousness. He hath a garment of his own, not that given by the King of the feast. . But hear now the doctrine of Christ. “Him that cometh to air, I will in no wise cast out.' Whosoever cometh to Christ in penitence of heart, believing his words, that he is “come to seek and to save that which was lost,’ and that ‘ his blood is shed for the Realission of sins; and praying for the aid of the Holy Spirit to enlighten the understanding, and to sanctify the heart, the same will be AccEPT Ed ; he will obtain peace of conscience, and grace to do works acceptable to God. And this constitutes the wedding garinent; justification and sanctification; our being justified by our faith in the blood of Christ, and our being sanctified by the promised influences of the Holy Spirit; that is, in other words, faith and its fruits. For these cannot be disjoined. They form one seamless, robe; and this is “the robe of righteousness.’ And these, we may observe, are the two pillars of our Church's doctrine, justification and sanctification. Our Church offereth to her guests the true wedding garment.” pp. 94, 95.
The most important part of this discourse is the Practical Application with which it concludes. It is directed to the cristing state of a large body of professing Christians, particularly of the superior and more cultivated classes, in this country, and embraces six different heads of observation and improvement, which contain much seasonable admonition and instruction. We would willingly quote from the second of these points of practical application, which refers to the “ meetness” or fitness for the enjoyment of the heavenly inheritance that must be acquired in this life; and we also pass over with regret, the striking remarks which occur in the . on the neglect of the observance of the duty of
family worship. We cannot, how
ever, refrain from extracting the fourth head almost entire, as it presents a view of things to which we earnestly wish that young persons in the higher stations of society, and those who have the right or the privilege of informing and influencing the public mind, could be univertally induced to attend. "There are others,” says Dr. Buchanan, "to whom this subject applies, with no less interest than to the heads of families; I mean public men, who possess the means of directing not families alone, but communities and nations; and who assume the right or Privilege of informing and improving the Public mind. Of what importance it is that the example which these uphold should be och as the youth of a Christian nation “ght to be emulous to follow. “The chief danger of young persons of toucation at this day, seems to be, in their Proposing to themselves for their imitation, characters that are rather specious for their *uts, than respectable for their virtues, or *inable for their piety. Now, if we beto the revelation of God, and would regu* out conduct by it, and by the principles of reason, we shall account no man to be a **iel for our imitation, who doth not *m to be fulfilling the great purpose, for "ich he was sent into the world; which is **quire a fitness for a higher state of be**d a title to the immortal blessings *ich revelation hath brought to light. “Call to remembrance some of the GREAT ***ts who have finished their career be* you; and learu wisdom from their fatal offence. Possessing learning, eloquence, *h, *tune, and almost every requisite for **tainment of true greatness, they were * objects of the envy and admiration of on during their life; yet they seemed to * “hort of the kingdom of God.' Their *ed vices demonstrated the unchanged * of their souls. Their sensual habits had *ined detainion over then; and the spirit * Wide and passion often shewed itself. Ily bad, perhaps, never conceived the idea * the natural disposition, and evil tempers ** heart, could be softened and subdued o, the spirit of the Gospel. Their neglect of **ip of God, their violation of his Potive laws, and their want of reverence * his holy name, all shewed that, they had
*d upon earth no fitness or disposition:
*-nie with the blessed society in heaven. *, *hen they died, the world which they
worshipped, soon forgot them; that world for which they had acquired all their meetness, was more inclined to assail their me. mory with obloquy, than to honour it with applause. - “By what argument, then, shall it be made to appear, that such characters as these are proper models for the imitation of Christian youth : Shall we hear of a counterbalance to all this (as it has been termed) under the specious names of public spirit, benevolence, generosity, and other popular virtues. These virtues every good inan ought to possess; but they form a very inconsiderable part of his character as a Christian. These names of virtue were known in ancient Greece and Rome; and are now known in modera France. They were constantly on the lips of Voltaire, and constituted his religion. All these virtues are perfectly compatible with enmity to God, with coutempt of his revelation, and with the worship of an idol; and they are the chief instruments by which ‘the god of this world' blinds the minds and seduces the judgments of men in polished life. Let young persons then beware of proposing for their imitation those characters of the age, who wish to be exhibited only in the school of philosophy; and who are merely ‘studious of arts that polish life, unmindful of their Maker." Let them rather aspire to a resemblance of men whose conduct is connected with the principles they profess, and which adorns the religion of their country; men who shew an example of true magnaninity, by preferring the approbation of God and a pure conscience, to the admiration of senates, and the honours of the world.” pp. 113–117.
ages of Christianity, and to the conversion of the heathem world, Dr. Buchanan takes occasion from this latter circumstance to introduce a powerful appeal to professed Christians, as ‘to the duty of propagating the Gospel amongst heathen nations, by oral preaching or by writings sent among them; “praying that God would do honour to his own word b the witness of the Spirit, and à. ing on the “Author and Finisher of our faith,' for a blessing on the work which he hath commanded.” Would God that this appeal, which our enlightened and benevolent author has so frequently and conspicuously made, and in support of which we have so often raised our feeble voice, might not be in vain Dr. Buchanan had observed, that many persons not only disbelieve the doctrines of Christ, but also his divine predictions. He refers particularly to the declaration of our Lord, that the destruction of Jerusalem would be a type of the judgment of the world at the last day. But even this solemn declaration makes no impression on many. In regard to them “his words have passed away.” They are regarded as “a voice, and nothing more.” The author, therefore, in conclusion, warns his hearers, and his readers, against this fatal error; directs them to the simple belief of the declarations of Scripture, as the means of preservation from it; and adverts to the doctrine of analogy in confirmation of the certainty of future judgment, and of future punishment. He represents a person somewhat undetermined as to this great point, as saying to himself,
“‘If there be a God, he is a God of mercy, he will not punish.” But what is the fact? Let him here exercise his reason, and refer to the evidence before him. He secs that God doth punish, even in this world. This life is to many a perinanent scene of punishment and misery. Now, what is the just inference and legitimate conclusion from this fact 2 It is this, that, if it be consistent with the mercy of God, that there should be misery here, it will be consistent with his
mercy that there shall be misery hereqfter. If it be compatible with his justice, that thers should be punishment in this world, we may believe that there will be punishment in the life to come. Do we behold a succession of awful events and revolutions in this world? Let us prepare ourselves to behold more awful and terrible scenes in the world to coine. The events of this life, in regard to their importance to the soul of man, are but shadows and names, compared with the great realities which are approaching. We behold, at this time, the kingdoms of the earth desolated, new empires established, princes dethroned and new kings created; and all this executed by the hand of man; executed with an impious spirit which would arrogate the character and power of the Deity. What, then, may we believe shall be the scene in that great day, when God himself shall come to ‘judge the world in righteousness,’ to vindicate his insulted honour, and to display his almighty power, in the presence of angels and of men! “Judging from the same principles of analogy, we infer again, that if God giveth happiness and gladness of heart to believers in this world, he will give happiness in the world to come. If there be seasons of joy and exultation in the converted soul here, there will be unutterable joy hereafter. If there be persons now in this world, who delight in praising God, and in contemplat. ing the blessings of redemption, by the blood of the Lamb, we are warranted to presums that, they will enjoy the delights of that em. ployment in a supreme degree in the world to conne. “For, as certainly as we have beheld a temporal Jubilee, on this earth, celebrated in joy and triumph by thousands of those who love their king, so surely shall we behold the Heaves Ly Jubilee, celebrated by ‘ thousands of thousands, and ten time ten thousand" of those who have loved Hix, who is “King of Kings, and Lord of Lords: who have loved HIM in this world, and maintained his cause, and proclaimed his glory; and who, when ‘the marriage of the Lamb is come,' shall join with angels and archangels, and all the company of heaven, evermore praising HIM, and saying, ‘Worthy is the Lamb that was slain, to receive power, and riches, and wisdom, and strength, and honour, and glory, and blessing.’” p. 128.
The copious analysis which we hare thus given of these interesting sermons, renders it unnecessary for us to extend our observations on their merits. We will only add, therefore, in recommending them togeneral perusal, that they are strongly marked by the various knowledge, the spirit offervent yet rational piety, and of warm yet enlightened [... which distinguish the writings of Dr. Buchanan; and we earnestly hope, that his talents will continue to be employed, where they are plainly calculated to be most eminently useful, in elucidating, defending, and enforcing the genuine doctrines of Christianity, among the higher classes of society in this country.
A Sermon preached at the Parish Church of North Bradley, in the County of Wilts, Sunday the 12th of November, 1809, on the Death of William Francis, an opulent Farmer of the said Parish. By the Rev. CHARLEs Daun ENY, Archdeacon of Sarum, and Vicar of North Bradley. Printed for the Benefit of the Clerk of the said Parish. Bath: Meyler. 1800. Price is.
It has been the uniform endeavour of the Christian Observer to recommend to the parochial clergy a perwnal knowledge of their parishionors; without which, as they are assured by all writers on the pastoral care, the instructions of the pulpit
and of the press cannot produce an
tect that may be known and imo either by the teacher or the earner. Such a knowledge is indeed, in many cases, utterly unattaluable; and Dr. Johnson observ‘i, that a London parish was a "try uncomfortable thing, because the clergyman could not know one in a hundred of his people. In tountry towns and villages the matlet is different, and we have reason w believe that in various situations of this kind throughout the king
are to be sound ministers who *gently maintain a pastoral interworse with the individuals of their *k, and by this intimacy gather
materials both for their private and public addresses, according to the infinite varietv of character which must fall oir their observation. The advantages of fulfilling this branch of the clerical office will be peculiarly felt in their visits to the chambers of sickness and death; and we are gratified by the opportunity afforded by the sermon before us, of introducing Mr. Daubeny under a character in which we are extremely willing to recognise him, that of a minister of the Gospel, evidencing his anxiety for the salvation of the souls committed to his care, by delivering and publishing a plain funeral sermon. The text is Micah, vii. 18, 19; and it seems to have been selected as having imparted some eneouragement to the departed; in reference to whom the preacher observes,
* Discourses of this nature are intended for the benefit of the living. To those who are dead they can be of no service. For as the tree falls, so it must lie. It is to little purpose then, to dwell on the character of a deceased party, farther than it may minister a profitable lesson to those who still remain in life. The sins and infirmities of a departed brother ought to be buried with him in the grave. Whatever they were, we have nothing to do with them, but to lament over them; having each of us an account to settle, to which our thoughts may be more profitably directed: for we are all of us, in s greater or less degree, sinners before God; and must all of us long since have been consumed, had we not to deal with a God who • delighteth in mercy? At the same time I think it right to observe, in justice to the dead as well as for the comfort of the living, that great sinner as our departed brother certainly was, he was in the concluding stage of his life, at least as far as I could judge, a great penitent. From the several conversa: tions i had with him, during his last illness, I was led to think that God had graciously opened his eyes to his condition; and that he consequently saw himself in the light in which he ought to have been seen, as clothed with filthy garments, and Satan standing at his right band; at the same time that he looked with the eye of faith to that Fountain for sin and uncleanness, which i. able effectually to cleanse him 1" considers
tion made him derive comfort from the words of the text, humbly trusting, as he occasionally expressed himself, that “ the God who delighteth in mercy would have compassion upon him, and would cast all his sins into the depths of the sea.’ And, as his affectionate minister, I am inclined to hope, what charity towards a brother in Christ disposes me to think, that his prayers, and his tears, have been rendered acceptable at the Throne of grace, through the all-susficieut merits of that loving Saviour, in whom alone he appeared to trust.” pp. 19–21. It will be perceived by the above extract, that Mr. Daubeny founds his view of the character and penitence of the departed on his personal knowledge of him. We gather from a subsequent part of the discourse that Mr. Francis, like numbers in his situation, was enslaved by a love of the world. On this subject his minister writes:
“There is a certain clinging property in
the clay of this world, which, by gathering .
round a man, too often leaves him not at sufficient liberty to exercise himself with effect in the things of a better world. But this is a subject, upon which it requires a voice from the dead to convince us. We fancy that we fallinto darkness when we die; but alas! we are most of us in the dark till then : and the eyes of our souls only then begin to see, wheu our bodily eyes are closing. Were our deceased brother permitted to address you on this subject, he would prohably say, what indeed you all know to be ... true, that by the work of his hands and the sweat of his brow, he had collected wealth, and purchased estates, which had tended to attach him more to this world than might otherwise have been the case; but he would not sail to add from his present conviction, that there was an estate of infinitely more value than all his purchases put together, even that which is likened in the Gospel * unto treasure hid in a field: the which when a nuan hath found, he hideth, and for joy thereof goeth and selleth all that he hath, and buyeth that field.' pp. 21–23.
•All this is very good; and we wish that such especially, among the clergy, as attach authority to the name of Mr. Daubeny on subjects of far less importance than those treated in this sermon, would emulate the example here set, by warning their congregations to beware of
the love of this world;—a passion, which, alas! may consist with an eager pursuit after theological knowledge, and even be cherished by that very pursuit, and finally issue in the loss of every thing but the praise of men. This remark particularly applies to subjects of controversy; the almost inevitable consequence of which is, that they absorb men in the attack and defence of opinions, mere opinions, before they have seriously asked the great question, What must we do to be saved? Convinced as we are of the danger incurred under these circumstances, we must confess that the perusal of a practical discourse—for example, on Death and the Judgment to come—is to the study of controversial volumes, as refreshment and repose to want
and weariness; or as shadows to
realities. To use the language of the eloquent Bishop Stillingfleet, which the occasion tempts us to accommodate,_* How dry and sapless are the voluminous discourses of philosophers,” (might it not be added, “and of mere theologians?") compared with this sentence, This is a faithful saying,and worthy of all acceptance, that Jesus Christ came into the world to save sinners Well might St. Paul then say, that he determined to know nothing but Christ, and him crucified. Christ crucified is the library which triumphant souls will be studying in to all eternity, This is the true 12+gelow of which cures the soul of all its maladies and distempers. Other knowledge makes men's minds giddy aud turgid; this settles and composes them. Other knowledge is apt to swell men into high conceits and opinions of themselves; this brings them to the truest view of themselves, and thereby to humility and sobriety. Other knowledge leaves men's hearts as it found them; this alters them, and makes them better" (Origines Sacra, b. 3. c. 6)