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fore named Protestants ; though: to die in that faith which he had they are more properly called Evan- confessed whilst be lived, he regelical Christians. In the year plied: "Yes, yes," and fell asleep 1530, a Diet was called by the in peace. His remains were conEmperor at Augsburg, at which veyed from Eisleben to Wittenberg, those of evangelical sentiments and there interred in the Palace delivered a confession of their Church, a funeral sermon being faith, which has since been called preached from 1 Thess. iv. 13_18. the Augsburg Confession. It was " But I would not have you to be drawn up by Philip Melanchthon, ignorant brethren, concerning them and approved by Dr. Luther. It which are asleep, that ye sorrow was read aloud at the Diet, and not, even as others which have no then handed to the Emperor. Most hope. For if we believe that Jesus European countries soon followed, died and rose again, even so them in embracing the Reformation, and also which sleep in Jesus will God at last in the year 1532, the Em- bring wit him.
For this we say peror's full permission was given unto you, by the word of the Lord, for the reformed to teach and that we which are alive and remain preach the Gospel, and to live unto the coming of the Lord, shall agreeably to its precepts. not prevent them which are asleep.
Thus the victory was gained; For the Lord himself shall descend God having wonderfully caused all from heaven with a shout, with the craft and cunning of the evil the voice of the archangel, and disposed to come to nought, and with the trump of God: and the the truth to prevail, the lives of dead in Christ shall rise first, then its promoters being mercifully pre- we which are alive and remain served.
shall be caught up together with This victory the great hero of them in the clouds, to meet the the faith lived to see, he being Lord in the air: and so shall we spared till the year 1546, the 18th ever be with the Lord. Wherefore February, when, having attained comfort one another with these to the 63d year of a life replete words.” with glorious deeds he died in peace at Eisleben, * full of hope and confidence in that God, who
A HAPPY NEW YEAR. had so wonderfully sustained and we have no disposition to decline protected him.
the accustomed salutation of the He was heard frequently, on the present season : for whether we fast day of his life, to utter the fol- wish happiness to others, or delowing prayer: "Father, into thy sire it for ourselves, Christian prinhands I commend my spirit; thou ciples are alike favourable to our hast redeemed me, Oh Lord, thou design ; their genuine influence is, God of truth and faithfulness." not only to produce - glory to Being asked immediately before God in the highest,” but “ peace he expired, whether he was willing on earth and good will towards
It may, indeed, be said, that * It is remarkable after all the hazards to these familiar salutations being gewhich the life of this great reformer had nerally words of course, and .embeen exposed by his intrepidity, that he died in the town where he was born, in the ploved without reflection, convey house of the Earl of Mansfield.
no definite meaning, and produce “ Man is immortal till his hour is come. no lasting impression. Perhaps
so; yet before we abandon the it surely ought not to be urged as courtesies of ordinary life, we should an argument for their omission; like to be informed what is pro- but merely as suggesting the proposed to repair, in our common priety of endeavouring to render parlanoe, the loss which would them more effective by an increasbe sustained by their withdraw- ed exercise of thought and earment.
nestness when the opportunity for We by no means intend to ad- their mutual application recurs. vocate the cause of mere exple- To desire that whatever impedes tives, much less to defend the the attainment of happiness may practice of insincerity ; but we are be removed—that whatever conalso unwilling to become the pa- tributes to it may be conferred trons of incivility, or to counte- and that the new date may be disnance a system which, though it tinguished beyond any former pemight effectually banish ceremony riod by its possession, is to wish from our social intercourse, and for “ a happy new year.” restrain the spontaneous expression It must, indeed, be confessed of kind feeling, would present no that personal afflictions, domestic barrier to the intrusion of a repul- trials, and commercial embarrasssive coarseness, nor supply any ments, greatly imbitter the cup connecting link by which the al- human life; yet, if the heart be most instinctive utterance of the eminently under the sacred conlips, may be associated with the trol of Christian principles, and is natural sympathy of the heart. subdued into a pious submission
Indeed, while such a change to the good pleasure of our Heawould be obviously for the worse venly Father ; there will remain a as to our manners, it is not at all source of happiness, which it will certain it would be attended with not be in the power of these calaany improvement of our morals; mitous events materially to affect; there being no necessary connec- for by its unparalleled influence it tion between the absence of
is possible to glory in tribulaliteness and the existence of moral tions ;' and even to
" count it excellence.
all joy when we fall into divers Is there not, however, a desira- temptations." In our desire of ble medium, in regarding which, happiness, therefore, however we we may be equally secured from may be allowed to include the abviolating the acknowledged pre- sence of those distressing visitacepts of good behaviour, and at tions, we should be infinitely more the same time, from neglecting the concerned that a spirit of insuborsuperior obligations of truth and dination to the divine government,
and a constant propensity to seek In reference then, to the saluta- for enjoyment in the paths of distion usually employed at this sea-obedience, may be mercifully reson of the year, it is only for us to pressed, by the continual presence reflect on what a mind imbued and efficient operation of divine with Christian benevolence
grace. supposed to include in the expres- Though to be ungrateful for the sion, and adopt it ourselves with external comforts and accommoda
similar comprehensiveness.- tions of life would be highly unbeShould it be objected, that so much coming, yet, it ought ever to be as this rarely comes within the recollected that“ a man's life con.contemplation of the persons who sists not in the abundance of the exchange these annual civilities, things which he possesseth.”.
5 Thanks to thy name for meaner things, unexpected trials, yet a closer walk Bat they are not my God.”
with God will make this the hap
piest year we have hitherto lived. How supremely excellent are The nearest approach we can make the sentiments and language of the on earth, to the sublime enjoyprophet! “ Although the fig tree ments of the heavenly state, conshall not blossom, neither shall sists in habitual communion with fruit be in the vines ; the labour God. “ Truly our fellowship is of the olive shall fail, and the field with the Father, and with his Son shall yield no meat ; the flock shall Jesus Christ; and these things write be cut off from the fold, and there we unto you, that your joy may be shall be no herd in the stalls: yet full.” Such a state of spiritual teliI will rejoice in the Lord, I will city, too, is inseparably connected joy in the God of my salvation.” with thediligent occupation of every If wealth, distinction, and volup- appointed means of instruction, and tuousness secured happiness, then a conscientious endeavour stedgreat numbers who are now mise- fastly to pursue the directions of rable, would long ago have reach- Christian obedience : for, if we ed nearer to its summit. Alas! say we have fellowship with him, how often are these very things, and walk in darkness, we lie, and in the eager pursuit of which the do not the truth. This blessed energies of mortals are so fre- career will be attended with dequently put to their utmost stretch, vout solicitude for the spiritual and the principal cause of their anxious eternal welfare of friends and strandays and of their sleepless nights ! gers, those that are nigh, and those “ Řiches certainly make to them- that are distant; and, as opportuselves wings: they fly away as an nity and ability may be imparted, eagle towards heaven”-fame is with cheerful co-operation in every reluctant in its approach and un- liberal plan which the inspirations certain in its continuance, and the of heavenly charity has devised to pleasures of sense, in more re- bless a fallen and benighted world. spects than one, resemble the Thus, living not to ourselves, but crackling of thorns under a pot.” to him who “both died, and rose, To solid and lasting happiness it and revived that he might be Lord is essential that the Spirit of God both of the dead and living,” we illuminate the understanding, sanc- shall earnestly desire the arrival tify the affections, and regulate of that period when“ in every the conduct the soul must pros. place incense shall be offered to per
and be in health. In the ab- his name and a pure offering”sence of these substantial and du- when Jew and Gentile shall meet rable blessings, there may be vi- in the same temple and worship sions and dreams of happiness, but the same Saviour-when the whole they will entirely vanish, leaving earth shall be of one language, and behind nothing but mortifying dis- holiness unto the Lord shall be appointment—"an aching void.” inscribed on every object. In this “There is no peace, saith my God, manner to commence, and to perto the wicked.”
severe in conducting the transacShould, therefore, the new pe- tions of the new year; receiving riod of time on which we are now every common and special beneentering, be characterized by many diction with unfeigned thankfulexternal deprivations, and even by ness, bearing with meekness and the presence of some heavy and resignation the burdens we may be called to sustain, exercising a fidels of our own day, who have generous sympathy to all around servilely copied their objections. us who are in circumstances of There is another point of view depression, and wishing the uni- in which the superlative importance versal diffusion of happiness in the of internal evidence is clearly world, we shall find no year we evinced -- its universal adaptation have yet lived so happy as eigh- to persons of every rank and chateen hundred and twenty-eight.
racter, whether learned or illiterate. It comes home to the judgment and conscience of
every man, and
leaves infidels of every description HORÆ EVANGELICÆ,
without excuse. No transcendent Or the Truth of the Scripture History of talent, no depth of learning is re
our Lord Jesus Christ evinced by the Un- quired to apprehend its nature, and designed Coincidences to be found in the to appreciate its force. The talent Histories of the four Evangelists, when required is possessed by every incompared with one another, and with the
the capability subsequent Books of the New Testament.
of comparing one thing with anWITHOUT depreciating the value other, and drawing an inference; of the external evidence of the and the only learning requisite, is truth and divine inspiration of the a knowledge of the Sacred ScripScriptures, it may safely be aflirm-tures.
A man of plain, common ed, that in several respects the in- sense, with the sacred volume in ternal evidence, arising from the his hand, is fully qualified to unsublimity of the doctrines, the pu- derstand and decide on every arrity of the morality, the extraordi- gument which may be adduced nary harmony, and the beneficial respecting its internal evidence. tendency of the whole, possesses Of such a man, if he honestly exan infinite superiority, and is en- amines this evidence, accompanied titled to a greater degree of cre- with humble and fervent prayer for dence than the former. Thus, the illumination of that Spirit by whatever pretences a book may whom the Scriptures claim to be make to authenticity and inspira- indited, it may justly be affirmed, tion, and by whatever weight of in the language of a distinguished external evidence it may be sup- prelate, on a kindred subject, that ported, if it contain immoral pre- “the whole compass of abstruse cepts, or real contradictions, we philosophy, and recondite history, should justly deem them sufhcient shall furnish no argument with to invalidate its truth, and to de- which the perverse will of man stroy its pretensions. It is pre- shall be able to shake this learned cisely on this ground that we prove Christian's faith.” the non-inspiration of the Koran Of the various species of interof Mohammed, lofty as are its pre- nal evidence, that which arises tensions, much as it is extolled, from the undesigned coincidences and widely as it is received by the between the sacred books, appears followers of the wily Arab. For the most convincing and satisfacthe same reason, the apparent con- tory, and least liable to objections. tradictions in the Christian Scrip- It was first developed, in the most tures have been a favourite topic able manner, by the late Dr. Paof cavil with the enemies of divine ley, in his “ Horæ Paulinæ; or revelation, from Spinosa down to the Truth of the Scripture History Voltaire, and the puny herd of in- of St. Paul evinced by a compari
THE GOSPEL OF ST. MATTHEW.
son of the Epistles which bear his and another to be forced, dubious; name with the Acts of the Apostles, or fanciful. These are distinctions and with one another.” It is upon which ought to be always retained the plan of this judicious and ex- in our thoughts. cellent work, that the following papers are drawn up; and to it the
No, I.-Chap. X. 2-4. seader is referred for a full and " Now the names of the twelve clear exposition of the argument. apostles are these : the first, SiThe several instances of agreement, mon, who is called Peter, and to adopt the statements of that Andrew his brother; James the able writer, are disposed under son of Zebedee, and John his broseparate numbers, not only to mark ther; Philip, and Bartholomew ; more sensibly the divisions of the Thomas, and Matthew the publisubject, but also to remind the can ; James the son of Alpheus, reader that they are independent and Lebbeus, whose surname was of each other, and complete of Thaddeus; Simon the Canaanite, themselves. Nothing has been and Judas Iscariot, who also beadvanced which did not appear trayed him.” probable, but the degree of proba- In this passage the twelve aposbility by which different instances ties are enumerated in pairs; a are supported is undoubtedly very mode of arrangement adopted by different. If the reader, therefore, no other evangelist, though the meets with a number which con- same order is in some measure tains an instance that appears to preserved.
The reason for the him unsatisfactory, or founded on adoption of such an arrangement mistake, he will dismiss that num- is not immediately obvious. Conber from the argument, but with sanguinity might justly be assigned out prejudice to any other. He as the cause in the cases of Simon will also please to remember this Peter and Andrew his brother, word, un designedness, as denoting James the son of Zebedee and that
upon which the construction John his brother, and James the and validity of our argument chiefly son of Alpheus and Lebbeus or depend ; and which, it is hoped, Thaddeus, also called Judas the will be sufficiently apparent from brother of James (Luke vi. 16.);" the instances themselves, and the and if Bartholomew be the same separate remarks with which they with Nathanael, as some have supare accompanied. It should also posed, he might with propriety be be observed, that the more oblique associated with his friend Philip, or intricate the comparison of a who first introduced him to a coincidence may be, the more cir- knowledge of the Saviour. John i. cuitous the investigation is, the 43–46. But there appears no better; because the agreement reason why Thomas, a fisherman which finally results is thereby of Galilee (John xxi. 1-13.), further removed from the suspicion should be united with Matthew the of contrivance, affectation, or de publican; nor why Simon the Casign. And it should be remem- naanite, or Zelotes (i. e. the Zealbered, concerning these coinci- ous, Luke vi. 15.) should be assodelices, that it is one thing to be ciated with Judas Iscariot, the minute and another to be precari- betrayer of our Lord. ous; one thing to be unobserved, If it be said, that, as there were and another to be obscure; one but four of the Apostles who rething to be circuitous or oblique, mained to be classed, it was im