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tend it not from a spirit of thankfulness and devotion, but merely as a matter of form.
Among the higher ranks of people, instances occur (though I hope they are but few) of an opposite error; I mean that of being churched (if the expression may be allowed) at home. The absurdity of this practice is so glaring, that I cannot allow myself to reason upon it, and sball only observe, that, if shame to acknowledge in public a mercy received from the Almighty, make any part of the sentiment, by which a lady is led to adopt it, the ceremony had better be altogether omitted. See II Sam, vi. 16. to the end of the chap, Mark vili. 38. Luke ix. 26. Rempstone, April, 11,
E. PEARSON. 1804.
P.S. I will thank your readers to make the following correction in your last number. The error was entirely my own. Page 149, line 6, for “ Article,"
i doc trine of predestination.” Page 149, line 7, for “ it," put f the article."
TQ THE EDITOR OF THE ORTHODOX CHURCHMAN'S
MAGAZINE, SIR, S several attempts (one of which you have justly ex
posed in your number for February) have been made to render men dissatisfied and disaffected, and to induce them to believe that, in complying with the Sunday Drills, they are violating the divine commands, and bringing down the divine judgments on themselves and their country, a few remarks on that subject may be useful.
No man should act against his conscience; but then let him be careful that his conscience be rightly informed : every scruple may not be right; every opinion of men is not to be followed as the law of God. In
general it is absolutely required, that every one should attend his parish church twice on a Sunday; unless he does so,
he cannot be said to sanctify the Sabbath day. But when we lay down a general and positive law, it allows many exemptions. In working a ship, though most of the crew are called upon to attend the public worship, yet some must be left for the necessary attention of the ship. The generality of a regiment in garrison may attend the service of the church; but I never heard that a centinel on that day either accused himself, or was justly accused by others, that he had violated the sabbath day. Children are nursed, and the sick attended, without any violation of the Sabbath day; nay, circumstances may be such, that even the attendance on public worship would be a neglect of a more important duty. “I will have mercy and not sacrifice.” In some cases, the Giver of all Good would rather that we attended to the comfort of a fellow creature,--the aged, sick and infirm, than to attend at his courts; God is most honoured when the most good is done to our fellow creatures.
In the necessary defence of our country is not great good done; as this includes our religion, our laws, our king, our aged parents, our affectionate wives, and young children? Does he deserve the name of Man, or the smallest blessing he enjoys, who would not contend for these as long as his existence lasted? In obeying these first great dictates, we are obeying the law of GOD. Circumstances may be such, that he who is attending the Sunday Drill, or marching to oppose the enemy on the coast, on a Sunday, is more truly sanctifying the Sabbath Day, than he who is attending some favourite Preacher, who esteemsit the greatest of all crimes to be absent from his long harangues, though these may be three times on the Sunday. An admired and pious-living author says, “ if there were not an appointed day of rest, many would never see the light of the sun, condemned to work in mines; many would never know the comforts of cleanliness, of a few chearful hours with their friends, or a walk in the fresh air, and would pass a miserable life of conti, nual hardship."
I am, Sir,
ON THE LORD'S SUPPER
(Distributed by the Endeavour Society.) HATEVER benefits we now enjoy, or hope for
hereafter, are all purchased for us by the death of Christ; therefore we are commanded to keep up a continual remembrance of it (a.) This is done by our eating bread and drinking wine, with prayer to God (b); wherein, the breaking of the bread signifies, the breaking of Christ's body upon the cross; and the pouring out the wine signifies, the shedding his blood for our salvation. The agreement we entered into at our baptism, we renew and confirm in this holy sacrament; which is intended as a seal of the new covenant, wherein God promises us three things: First, to forgive us our sins (c.) Secondly, the help of his holy Spirit (a.) Thirdly, eternal life (e.) The sacrament of the Lord's supper is the highest act of devotion we are capable of upon earth. It is the greatest honour that God ever granted to men, for he calls us to his table; and the food he gives us, is the body and blood of Christ. If then you had the purity of an angel you could not deserte so great a favour; and ought to think it a great blessing that you are suffered to taste it; for if a man eat of this bread, with an honest and good heart, he shall live for ever (f). How wicked then is it to slight and refuse this holy sacrament, when you are invited and desired to partake of it. Except ye eat the flesh of the Son of man, and drink his blood, ye have no life in you (g). You see we cannot neglect it, without the greatest danger to our souls. This further appears from the danger of neg. lecting the PASSOVER among the Jews (h), which answered to it. I would charitably suppose, that no christian disdainfully refuses to come to the Lord's table, or turns his back scornfully upon it, but only on some pretence or other, which he thinks reasonable and good; and would, if he was convinced of his error, return to his duty
* See MANUAL OF ORTHODOX DIVINITY, by the Rev. OLIVER ST. JOHN COOPER, M. A, &c. Chap. XLI. Page 130, printed by the Estim DEAVOUR Society. (a) Luke xxii
. 19. (b) 1 Cor. xi. 24, 25. (c) Luke xxiv. 47, and Heb. viii, 12. (d) Luke xi. 13. (e) 1 John, ii. 25. (f) John vi. 51. (g) Joho vi. 53. aExodus xii, 15, 19,
in a matter of so great concern to his soul. Some prés tend they are unworthy, and therefore are afraid of eat. ing and drinking their own damnation (i). But it is not the unworthy person who is in this danger; if it was, we might all of us be afraid of receiving. The more unworthy we find ourselves, the more do we want this holy sa-, crament. But it is the person who eats and drinks it in an unwoRTHY MANNER, not discerning the Lord's body (i); that is, makes no difference between common food and the bread and wine which represents the body and blood of Christ. The worst of men, if they communicate at all, do it with greater reverence and decency than those Corinthians whom St. Paul so much blames (k). I would not have men afraid to do their duty; but come with cheerfulness and humility; for there are many reasons to engage us to come, and no tolerable pretence to stay away. However it is necessary to prepare and examine ourselves before we eat of that bread, and drink of that cup (), especially if it be the first time. But with those who have often received, the case is very different; for though an examination is convenient, and some preparation absolutely necessary, yet a good and virtuous life is the best preparation; and he that lives such a life is never altogether unprepared. To such, the shortest notice will be sufficient; and THE SERVICE OF THE CHURCH WILL FURNISH HIM WITH ALL THE DEVOTIONS NECESSARY FOR THE HOLY COMMUNION. What is expected of us before we go to the altar is this: to repent truly of our former sins (m), to resolve to lead better lives for the time to come (n), to have a lively faith in Christ (0), to be thankful for his death (p), and to be in charity with all men (q), So that no more is required of us, to fit ourselves for the holy sacrament, than is required to fit us for death and heaven, or even for prayer. The danger of unworthily refusing, is AS GREAT as the danger of unworthily receiving; for sins of omission or neglect are as great as actual sins. Every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit shall be hezen down and cast into the fire (r). During, the time of the Communion service my advice is this : follow the minister through the whole office with reverence, devotion, and attention of mind. The only spare time (i) 1 Cor. xi. 29. (k) 1 Cor. xi. 17, 21, 22. (1) 1 Cor. xi. 28. (m) Luke xiii. 3, 5. (n) Rom. vi
. 4. (o) Mark xvi. 16. Acts xx. 21. (p) Acts ü. 23, 26. Col. i. 12, 14. (9) Col. ii, 13, 14. (r) Matt, rii, 10.
CORRESPONDENCE BETWEEN THE RIGHT NON. TOR)
REDESDALE, LORD HIGH CHANCELLOR OF INNI. t), AND THE RIGHT HOX. THE EARL OF FINQALL, Neidi's
(Continued from page 181.)
THE EARL OF FIXGAIL.
Ely-place, Dublin, Aug. 28, 180, "The high respect and esteem I hear for your Lordship whose loyalty and humanity have been at all times con
Vol. VI. Churchm. Mug April, 1804. h k spicuous