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admonitions ! Here he presents an more exceeding and eternal weight of example worthy of the imitation of glory.” This he felt, this he avowed, every other pastor. We should never and experienced a pleasure in avowbe unmindful of the little ones around ing, and thus gave the right hand of us who are to occupy the vacant fellowship to all those who loved the places made by the inroads of death Lord Jesus Christ in sincerity. and the vicissitudes of time; who are Having thus prescribed the last to rise up as the parents of the next public token of our respect to the pergeneration. And it is well known sonal and ministerial character of our what a happy influence pastoral atten- venerable neighbour, let us bring the tion to the welfare of children produces. subject home to our own PARTICULAR And the lengthened years of our de- IMPROVEMENT; for that, my dear parted friend, as a venerable minis- hearers, is the great end of preaching ter of the cross, added much to the and of hearing. respectof those that knew him and loved Now, what do we learn from the event him. An aged pastor is a pleasing which we have contemplated ? In the character ; his very appearance inspires first place it seems, THAT DEATH IS AN our affection and respect. We call to
EVENT—your ministers mind how many discourses he must depart as well as yourselves. “Your have delivered during his official career fathers, were are they? the pro-how rich he must be in experience- phets-do they live for ever? And, what an unction must necessarily rest shortly, you and I must go the way of all on his conversation.—He is like the the earth. My hearers, what is the state ripened fruit which has long been in of your souls ? Have you been brought the sun, and is ready to drop from the to true repentance? Are your sins, parent stem. And as our venerable which are many, forgiven? What do friend lived in the land, his end you know of communion with God, was peace and tranquillity. His last and of fellowship with his words, as I have been informed by an Jesus Christ ? Are you using the esteemed friend, were, “Now, Lord, world without abusing it? Are you lettest thou thy servant depart in peace looking not so much at things which according to thy word, for mine eyes are seen and temporal, as at those have seen thy salvation.” And his things which are unseen and eternal ? prayer was answered. May we die Happy are you if it be so ! Then when the death of the righteous-may our you die yourend will be peace if otherlast end be like his !”
wise, you are not prepared to meet There was, however, one feature more your God. in his personal character which I We learn, again, THE GREAT IMhad almost forgotten, but which we PORTANCE would not have intentionally concealed, Your attendance upon the ordinances I allude to the liberality and catho- of religion amounts to nothing without licism of his spirit. Basil Wood was this. Your sudden impulses, your ocno bigot; he loved all good men of casional convictions and resolves, my every name and denomination ; he brethren, will not avail, unless they knew, that though there are some non- terminate in newness of life. You essential shades of difference among must be converted by divine grace; us, yet we are all one in Christ Jesus ; your heart must be changed by the though distinct as billows we are one Spirit of God. It is a happiness to as a sea; and that in heaven these know, that these ordinances are the shades will be absorbed “in the far means of grace, but we wish to cau.
IS A COMFORT TO US, THAT THOUGH OUR
SHEPHERD EVER LIVES.
VERY ALARMING TO THEIR UNGODLY
tion you against resting in their exter- reflections, my hearers, apply them to nal observances, against satisfying your- yourselves. Shortly, perhaps, at a selves in merely frequenting the house period which we are not at all calof prayer, mingling in the praises of culating on, the preacher who adthe sanctuary, and in other acts of de- dresses you, will have to yield obevotion, and then departing, forgetting dience to the summons of death. If the improvement that ought to be you are, therefore, left destitute of made, the feeling that these services vital piety, he will be a witness against ought to have inspired, the practical you. On, then, remember that his results that they should produce on ministry will either be a savour of life your conversation and deportment in unto life, or of death unto death. May the world.
you be his joy here and his crown of And further, we may remark, that it rejoicing hereafter !
And, finally, this is an event to the
surviving members of our departed
The bishop friend's church, which requires of them of souls is from everlasting to everlast- much of the spirit of Jesus Christ. Now ing, having an unchangeable priest is the time for them to stand by each hood, and thus he can supply the ne. other to promote the unity of the spirit cessities of his church; he can do for and the bond of peace ; and if as a us exceeding abundantly, above all | Christian community they were now that we can ask for.
within the sound of my voice, I would Andonce more, we learn from the sub. say, Never desert the place to which ject, THAT THE DEATH OF MINISTERS IS you have been so long attached. You
have lost your venerable pastor, but HEARERS. Now, let us suppose, for a still it is the church, the house moment, what must be the reflections of of God. I would caution them those stated attendants of our esteemed very affectionately against cultivatfather in Christ, who have heard all the ing a roving spirit-I would entreat expostulations and instructions that them, by the mercies of God, to flowed from his lips, and his many promote unity and brotherly love appeals to the conscience, and are still especially to be very much in secret strangers to the one thing needful. and family prayer for divine direcWhat must have been their reflections tion, that the unoccupied pulpit may when they followed him to the tomb be filled by a good Minister of Jesus -when they saw him closed up for Christ, who, as a faithful and devoted ever—when they understood that his Shepherd, will go out before them, spirit had winged its flight to the rest and feed them with knowledge and which remains to the people of God? | with spiritual provision. Their reflections surely must have been May God bless them, and cause the somewhat similar to these. My be- light of his countenance to shine upon loved pastor is gone-long ere this he them, and grant them peace. May he has appeared before God and witnessed prepare them, and you, and me, and against me,I have heard the truth, every other minister of the sanctuary but I have rebelled against it, and have for an abundant entrance into the never received it in the love of it. Ishall everlasting kingdom of our Lord Jesus no more hear his voice—no more pro- Christ, and say to us at the last great mises, no more invitations will ever day, “Well done, good and faithful proceed from his mouth. He has left servants, enter ye into the joy of your me an unconverted sinner! Ah, solemn Lord.”-Amen.
DELIVERED BY THE REV. T. MORTIMER,
AT ST. LEONARD'S, SHOREDITCH, APRIL 24, 1831.
John, x. 11.—“I am the good Shepherd, the good Shepherd giveth his life for the
I need hardly remind you, my Chris-, and that you are interested in his tian brethren, that we last Sunday death, will be worth ten thousand considered these words. They were worlds. Ten thousand worlds did I brought before us, by the church, in say! Ten thousand worlds will apthe service for the day. We stated, pear a poor beggarly paltry thing on that there were two things to be con- such a day, compared with a good sidered. First, the OFFICE which hope, through grace, of something beChrist BORE TOWARDS HIS PEOPLE- yond the grave. that he was their shepherd; this we We are going then, this afternoon, considered last Sunday afternoon—the to talk about the death of Jesus, a. Second point we left for to-day, which subject which I suppose we have all is, THE SACRIFICE HE MADE FOR his heard of before ; but I wonder what PEOPLE. “ The good shepherd giveth some of you would have said of this his life for the sheep."
subject if you never had heard of the We appear to be the same congre- death of Christ. Let me tell you that gation we were last Sunday, but I am this death of Christ, when preached to not quite sure that we are, I am not the people, has sometimes accomplished quite sure but that some persons who wonderful effects. Some of the best heard me last sabbath day may never missionaries that this world ever saw, hear another sermon preached, or may next to the Apostles and the primitive before this time have got into another Christians, some of the best missionworld. Oh, my brethren, we come to aries that this world of ours ever saw, God's house, and we hear his word, have been, perhaps, those sent out by and we go our way, and some of the ancient episcopal church of the us, perhaps, never hear the word of Moravian brethren. I look upon it God again. Suppose such a case for that no missionaries, who ever crossed one moment. What is it, my Chris- the sea to preach the Gospel to the tian people, to a dying man, when heathen, ever did more than they have overtaken suddenly by death, at the done. They made a grand mistake, turn of a corner, when least expected, however, when they first began to in a moment, perhaps, what is it to preach. They went and preached to such a man, to feel that he is one of the heathen, mark you, that they were Christ's sheep, and what is it to feel not to kill, that they were not to comthat the Lord Jesus laid down his mit adultery, that they were not to life for him ? Let me tell you, by and steal, and the heathen did not care a by, however common this passage may straw for what they said ; some went appear, however uninteresting it may to sleep, others paid no attention at appear, God knows, and you will all; others said, we knew this before. know it, that the day is coming, when | At length, one of them addressing the to feel that you are Christ's sheep, missionary said, do you come all this way to tell us what we knew before ? , and boldly and lovingly lifted up did you, said the Indian, cross the before the people, there the blessing great big water to tell us that we must rests. not steal, that we must not commit There is a mighty and wonderful adultery, that we must murder one promise attendant on this. “ I,” another ; we knew all this before, but said Jesus, “ if I be lifted up from the we cannot help it; we do these things earth will draw all men unto me.” I and we cannot help it? The mis- am, therefore, always thankful to GOD sionaries found out their mistake from when I have got to preach about my that hour, and what do you think Saviour. I wish to know nothing they did ? They began to preach what among you save Jesus Christ and him you have got in the text, that Christ crucified. I often wish that my serlaid down his life for the sheep ; they mons had ten thousand times more of began to preach the death of Jesus to Jesus in them. I believe that one these poor untaught heathen, and what reason why half the sermons fall to was the consequence? Why one poor the ground, and that nobody goes wretched man began weep, and home touched, moved and melted, is another began to weep, and one began because our sermons have nothing of to think on his wicked life and to Jesus in them. This was the preachwish to God to be a Christian ; and ing by which the Apostles brought a the effect was, that there was soon a wicked and heathen world to the foot Christian church planted even among of the cross—this was the means by the heathen, and the power of God's which the Roman Emperor became a Holy Spirit attended the preaching of Christian—this was the means by the crucified Saviour, and sinners were which idols fell to the ground, and the converted to the faith of Jesus.
God of Israel was adored and worAh, my dear brethren, the preaching shipped—this it was our Reformers of the cross has done wonders let me took care to preach when they took tell you, and it is doing so now. away all the rubbish of popery from If I were asked who were the most the doctrines of the Gospel, and brought useful preachers in Christendom, I forth the old doctrines and preached would not go to the most learned, the Gospel to the common people. much as I honor literature-I would Look at your Homilies not one person not go to the most eloquent, much as in an hundred ever reads them. You I
may admire eloquence—but, I would know not what your Reformers have ask, who are they that preach Jesus taught to the people. You take, many and him crucified with the greatest of you, not the least trouble to under. simplicity to the people—who are stand or to read these things for yourthey who forget themselves and lift selves. But go and read these Homialoft the cross of Christ and point lies and you shall see that they are perishing sinners to him? Wherever full of the Lord Jesus. this is done, whether it be in the And yet it is a strange thing to say, stately cathedral, or whether it be in but it is true, and I must say it, that the humble barn or cottage, there the the preaching of the cross is, to some power and grace and blessing of our people, foolishness—the preaching of God rests. Whether it be in the this, that Jesus laid down his life for crowded city, or whether it be among the the sheep, is to some persons foolishness. poor Hottentots, or New Zealanders, And to whom think you? I do not or Indians, wherever Jesus is preached, speak it irreverently, I speak it sowherever the cross of Christ is plainly berly, advisedly, and in the fear of God-to whom is the preaching of must be untrue, or I must be going to the cross foolishness? Mark—to the eternal fire. Oh, my dear hearers, would men that are damned-to those who to God that hearing these things you die in their sins and go to hell. You would inquire what you know about want a proof of this—a Scriptural | the cross of Christ! Is it foolishness proof. You are ready to say to the to you? It may be, that I have some preacher-sir, your assertion is a strong persons here to-day, who, when they one, can you bear it out by Scripture? heard this text given out, said, I have If I cannot do not believe me I give heard it before. Heard it before ! you the Scripture—“ The preaching of Yes, I hope you have, or else, indeed, the cross is to them that perish fool- what have we been doing if we have ishness." If that passage do not mean not preached it before. You thought what I have said to you, pray what you did not much need to hear it again, can it mean? Does it mean any thing ? and you thought it was an old byIs not the language as clear and ex- gone subject, not much calculated to press as it is possible to be? How interest persons. Then, I pray you, then ought this to open your eyes.
tell us what can possibly interest a We know that nine out of ten of those sinful, a rational, and immortal creathat live in this wicked thoughtless ture, if the cross of Christ will not inworld of ours despise the preaching of terest him; and yet it is true, that the the cross.
Not merely despise it but preaching of the cross is to them that think it foolishness—that it is unneces- perish foolishness. sary, say some—that it is fanatical, say Take another view of the cross of others—that it is puritanical, say others Christ, about which I am preaching-any name of current reproach, any of the death of Jesus. “To them that bad name, or supposed bad name that perish it is foolishness, but to Christhey can give to Christian doctrine they tians it is the power of God.” A will give and do give. But who are marvellous thing to say of it-one of they? The men who are going to the the highest things that the Apostles devil—the men who are posting to could say of it. Now, then, my
bredestruction—the men who are on their thren, if this be the case, I wish to way to eternal fire--these are the ask you, has this news, this good men. My dear brethren, the preaching news, these glad tidings, which have of the cross is, to them that perish, been published to the world, have they foolishness. I do not ask you to be been the power of God unto you? A lieve what I say, but take what the most important question; and I will
The preaching of the try to help you to answer it. cross-the preaching of the death of It says here, “the good shepherd Jesus—the making so much ado about giveth his life for the sheep.” It is á crucified Redeemer is thought to be said by St. Paul, in the passage I have perfect madness and folly. And by quoted, that to those who are of the whom? By the men I have told you church of GOD, “to us who are saved, of—by the men who are posting to it is the power of God.” I wish to everlasting damnation.
know, for it is a matter very important Oh, then, what an awful subject is for me to know-I wish to know, the cross of Christ, and what a sort of whether this doctrine has been the touchstone is it to us all. If it is power of God to any of you? And as foolishness to me, and I think it is so, I promised to endeavour to assist you and care nothing about it, and despise in this inquiry, I proceed to fulfil my those that preach it, then the Bible promise. The Apostle Peter, when