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Gospel. Nor should we ever look indifferently on, or willing. ly and unnecessarily throw away, the motives by which the Christian church may be stimulated to action, in obedience to the command of Jesus Christ, to go and “teach all nations,” to evangelize all nations, and to preach his Gospel to every creature.

But it certainly may be suggested, and is worthy of the gravest consideration, whether we may not appeal to and employ a class of motives, which neither the word nor providence of God will justify. The hope of success, it is correctly urged by Mr. Harris,* is an essential element of activity, and if this be gone, and we are to believe that the world is not to be evangelized by the noiseless and gradually augmented instrumentality of the Christian church, accompanied by the energizing influence of the Holy Spirit, at least one powerful class of motives will be rendered unavailable or inoperative. He has made an issue between those who believe in the instrumentality of man, as designed of God, for the conversion of the world, and for the consummation of the Gospel scheme, and of those whose views in prophecy lead them to look for a fearful and solemn crisis, to be signalized by the personal coming of Jesus Christ for the introduction and establishment of his kingdom, on the ruins of existing pations hostile to his supremacy. He admits, that many, who adopt the latter view, are not only friendly to Missionary enterprise, but profess to derive from it motives to increased diligence in the cause of God : and he bears very honorable testimony to their piety, and to the fact, that some of them “number among the liberal and active supporters of our religious institutions.” But he allows himself, --certainly by no means conformably with the Christian rule, or the Christian spirit,—to SUSPECT that in many of such instances, we are indebted for what they do, rather to the very natural desire of recommending their peculiar views to others, than to the views themselves,—that their conduct is in this respect better than their creed,—that it is the triumph of their piety over their opinions,”—and that whatever of Missionary zeal and benevolent activity they now evince, is to be referred rather to the influence of principles

* See his Great Commission, p. 135,

which date anterior to their peculiar views of prophecy. The warrant he adduces for these suspicions and fears, will apply with equal force to many who adopt his own views, among whom, as numerous instances may be found, of those, who, at one period of their history,“ did run well,” but who have subsequently become as inactive in reference to the diffusion of the Gospel, as if a prophet had been deputed to say to them, “your strength is to sit still.”

Such impeachment of motive is not allowable. It is the ARGUMENTUM AD INVIDIAM, and is totally unfounded, if not suggested by ignorance of the views condemned, and of their legitimate bearing on Christian practice.

Suppose that a man believes the world is to be gradually brought under the dominion of the Gospel, by the present instrumentalities employed. The prospect of success, it is true, will quicken effort, and induce liberality, just in proportion as his benevolence expands, and he longs for the welfare of the human race. But it is necessary, for the activity and efficiency of that motive, to keep him always advised of measurable success, and stimulated by bright and glowing pictures of the future. When disappointment, disasters, and defeat occur, as they often do, what then is the resource ? nothing is left, but to fall back upon the promise of God, which presents the arm of Omnipotence, the faithfulness of Jehovah, for our sure reliance, and hope of ultimate victory. Who does not see that, in having recourse to such sources of hope and consolation, we must be sure that we understand the import of the promise, and know the mind of God expressed in it? Imagination may electrify; but it is not for one moment to be admitted as the expounder of God's word and promises.

As long as he can be kept stimulated, and his passions thus be fired, he may be roused to action. But the electric fires die-a morbid state of mind and heart ensues upon the excessive use of stimulants, applied to men's fancies and passions. It is only as we can fall back on fixed and stable principles, that we can look for continuous, increasing and devoted action. Those principles can never be found, but in intelligent and believing views of God's own mind and will. Our benevolence and action must embrace the objects, and take the

direction, and be with the design, of God's own, to be truly successful and permanently efficient. It would be just as legitimate here to suspect, were it proper so to do, that much of the fickleness and spasmodic action of many friends of Missions, who avow their expectation of the world's conversion by such instrumentality, may be referred to such causes.

Suppose, now, on the other hand, that a man believes in the approaching speedy personal coining of the Lord Jesus Christ, to destroy the guilty nations of the earth by positive acts of retributive violence, to raise the bodies of his dead saints, to quicken the living, and to establish the kingdom of Heaven in their joint dominion, and that in the mean time, he will have his gospel preached as a witness to all nations, that he may visit the Gentiles, and take out of them a people for the glory of his own name,-with what peculiar emotions, and invincible energy, will he address himself to the great design and business of his Christian life ? He looks upon the kingdoms of this world as being under the dominion of the god of this world,"

," " the great enemy and avenger,” that foe of Jesus Christ, the old“roaring lion" which goeth about seeking whom

1 he may devour. The kingdom of Heaven, he is persuaded, is designed to supersede this accursed dominion, and to fill the earth with joy and blessedness. Its honors, and privileges, and rewards, as administered by the subordinate agency of the saints, he believes can only be attained by the contempt of this world's wealth and greatness, power and glory, and by a life of suffering, devoted, and faithful attachment unto Jesus Christ. He may, indeed, in common with others, be blinded by a false philosophy, which will not permit him to make a right estimate of human agency, obligation, and instrumentality, in carrying on the designs of God. In this respect, he is, however, no otherwise affected than are multitudes, who do not believe in the personal, visible appearance of Christ, to introduce the reign of Heaven. Whatever inaction and indifference to the Missionary enterprise he may evince, must be referred to his system of philosophy, not to his faith in this matter. With right views of human obligation and instrumentality, and with intelligent views of the great scheme of providence, of which the coming and kingdom of Christ form


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the grand result, he will find in his millenarian faith, not only a solace in the midst of sorrows, distresses, and disappointments, but an incentive to ever-active effort in bearing testimony to the glory of his Saviour, and in swelling the triumphs of his heavenly kingdom.

He is met, at the very moment of enlisting in the service of Christ, by a solemn question-whether to renounce his hopes and prospects, his pleasures and plans, so far as they stand connected with the kingdoms of this world, and are inspired by the promises of earth, to cast in his lot, for time and eternity, with the people of God, and to prefer the reproach of Christ to the treasures of Egypt. Till this question is decided, and with all his heart and soul he gives himself to Jesus Christ, he is none of his. There can be no neutrality here. Indifference and lukewarmness—an attempt to reconcile God and Mammon, Christ and Belial—will only cause him to be spewed out of the mouth of Christ, and to have his name blotted out of the book of life. It is “to him that overcometh," and to him alone, that the promise will be verified, that Christ will give him “ to sit down with him on his throne, as he hath sat down with the Father on his throne. He feels that as he enters on the service of Christ, he enlists as a soldier, commences a warfare, and that both the service and the war are for life. He is not dazzled by great and brilliant prospects of sharing with the world in its honors, and enriching himself by its spoils. He knows that victory is certain, and that nothing can more effectually promote his honor, and swell his share in the triumphs of the Great Captain of salvation, than to fall a sacrifice, as he did himself. He looks not on the governments of the earth, expecting them to be grasped, and under this dispensation subjected to the supremacy of Jesus Christ, but knows that they are under the influence and direction of intrigue and duplicity, of falsehood and treachery, of selfishness and corruption ;- fit illustrations of his character, who has usurped the dominion of earth, and claimed its kingdoms as his

He is thus fortified against their seductive influence. If, in the providence of God, he is called to take a part, and to share in the obligations devolving on those who administer that rule which God has made essential to the welfare and existence of society, he is reminded of an authority superior to that of man, and of the necessity of keeping a conscience void of offence towards both. He is a witness for Christ, let him be where he may or do what he will. Having made his choice, and preferred the glory of the heavenly kingdom to that of the kingdoms of this world, he is willing, if needs be, to seal his testimony with his blood, knowing that this will increase the brilliancy of his crown. Firmness, decision, uncompromising fidelity and attachment to Jesus Christ, are promoted by the views he takes, not of the blending, but of the contrast, of Christ's kingdom with those of this world. Believing that in the present dispensation of his grace, his Lord and Master is calling out a people from the Gentiles for his own glory, and preparing the whole elect company of his priests and kings, who are to share with him in the triumphs of his dominion; feeling the oligation of his Master's command to preach the good news of his kingdom to every creature, and to enlist recruits in his service; and not being paralyzed by a false philosophy relative to human agency, which has long pervaded the church, irrespective of millenarian views, he becomes, in fact, a Missionary, wherever he is and wherever he goes, telling of the doom of a guilty world, of the authority, glory, and claims of the Saviour, and of his grace and promises of pardon and blessedness to all that will come to him.


His story is very simple. His testimony is full, and it strikes as directly against the intrigue, selfishness, violence, and oppression of the haughty potentates of earth, as it does against the ambition, cupidities, and lusts of individuals. The native influence of his faith in this wondrous matter, is to disencumber him from earth, to relieve him of a thousand embarrassments, to fortify him against the ensnarements and fascinations of a world that lieth in wickedness, to enkindle his zeal and devotion to Christ and his cause, to direct him to the source of all inspiring influences, and to the treasures of wisdom and strength laid up for him in Jesus Christ. He is not to be excited and stimulated by the prospect of immediate and speedy or partial success, nor in danger of intriguing with princes, and rulers, and nobles of the earth, to secure the temporary triumph of Christianity. He falls back upon the re

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