Obrazy na stronie
PDF
ePub

CHARITY, OR CHRISTIAN LOVE. Let num'rous isles exulting raise their WHAT tho’I boast the ways of heav'n voice.

Tho'clouds and darkness veil his wise to scan, In all the tongues and eloquence of

of designs, man,

Bright equity thro' ev'ry action shines. Or could I modulate with lips of fire,

On all his foes, consuming fire is hurld; In strains which list'ning angels might His livi

Cht His livid lightnings luminate the world. admire:

The earth beholds the terrible display: Did science her mysterious page unroll,

round The rocky hills like wax dissolve away. And with sublimer truths enlarge my !

The lofty mountains to their centres soul;

nod, Did prophecy, in one expanse of light. And nature trembles at the approachLay all the future open to my sight :

ing God. What tho'my faith all miracles display, The spacious heav'ns his righteousness Bid plains ascend, and mountains melt declare, away,

And man amaz'd surveys his glories Rocks at my fiat into ocean hurl'd

there; And earthquakes break the order of Sees wor'ils on worlds in beauteous orthe world;

der rove; Or could I regulate the obedient sun, Systems o'er systems regularly move. In other orbite bid the planets run. Let stupid deists who despise his name. Nature convuls'd, a diff'rent aspect

spect Confounded, own their ignorance and wear,

shame; Confound the seasons and invert the Confess his word, the source of truth year:

divine; Yet did not charity its aid bestow, Discard their idols, and their creed Inspire my voice and in my bosom glow, resign. Tho'sweeter far than angels ever sung, W

With joy, blest Zion heard thy judgPersuasion on my lips enamour'd hung,

ments, Lord,My fairest eloquence should scarce A

And Judah's daughters gratefully

ador'd. surpass

vel or the sounding For thou, O Lord, enthron'd in glory brass.

bright, Faith, science. prophecy. would all Art far exalted o'er the sons of light. expire,

Ye shining seraphs who surround his Nor leave one spark to wake the dying

the dying throne, fire.

Adore and praise the co-eternal Son. What tho' I consecrate my goods to Give thanks ye saints, extol your sotebless,

reign King; And succour patient merit in distress, Detest the pleasures which from evil Afflicted virtue of its tears beguile, i virtue of its tears beguile.

,

spring And bid the face of sorrow wear a smile;

Sasmile: Direct your course the strait and nar. Or could I with the glorious three al

ee all tow way, lid,

Which leads to regions of eternal day. The fiery furnace unappall’d, divide; His guardian care all needful good be. Yet did not charity possess my soul, And all its powers and faculties con And shields you from innumerable foes. troul,

Celestial light, felicities unknown, My most heroic fortitude were vain,

And joys ineffable for you are sown. Patience of evil, and contempt of pain; Exult, ye righteous souls; exalt your My gift and alms the wretched to be

be. voice; friend,

And in remembrance of his name reIn weakness would begin, in weakness Joice!

sta

end.

CONTEMPLATION OF THE HEAVENS.

ARISE, my soul, from vain pursuits 'PARAPHRASE ON THE 97th PSALM.

arise ; THE great Jehovah reigns, let earth And view the sparkling wonders of the rejoice,

skies:

Thro vast immensity betake thy way, Thou never canst the amazing whole And learn the laws those distant survey; world obey :

Cease then my soul, no longer wing Trace out the orbit of each fleeting thy way. sphere,

Here pause a while then with seri. Projected with impetuous career o us thought, Around yon sun; (stupendous orb of Enquire by what these mighty things light!

were wrought? Too fulgent for the tender visual sight.) Could fortuitous atoms ever fly, Whilst in the centre it diurnal rolls, And jumble into such just harmony? And darts its rays to heaven's distant Could this stupendous work by chance poles;

be made? Directs each planet to its bended Be still upheld and govern'd by its aid? course,

Not so, my soul, so wonderful a scene, By nice adjusted centripetal force. Without some mighty cause had ney. Those flaming comets rapid in their er been: flight,

Such marks of wisdom, pow'r and de. Ascend beyond the reach of mortal sight;

Thro' all these great and glorious Thro’ various curves with varied speed works combine, they move,

As clearly shew their Maker's hand Yet never stray, nor from their orbits divine. rove:

Then dread the faith of atheistic fools; In stated periods each performs its And own v’er all, that God eternal tour,

rules! Urg'd and restrain'd by some unerring

power. Amidst the interstellar regions soar,

A SCRAP. And their innumerable worldsexplore; TRUST God, suspect yourself, act Beyond the reach of telescopic sight, right, and pray; Behold, whyt orbs of vivid fire and Seek peace, not grandeur, hear much, light!

little say; Systems, and systems, still, and still Reveal no secrets, learn the weak to arise ;

spare, And suns, and worlds, yet meet thy Own a superior, and an equal bear.

wond'ring eyes.

ON SOLITUDE.

THERE are situations from which nothing but Solitude and retirement can relieve us. For this reason, it is frequently necessary that those whom melancholy affects, should be left alone; for, as we shall now proceed to show, they may find in Solitude an infinite variety of consolations, and many sources of comfort, both for the mind and the heart.

The healthy and the sick, the happy and the miserable, the rich and the poor, all, without exception, may find infinite advantages in a religious retirement from the world. It is not, alas! in the temples of pleasure, in those meetings where every one empties to its last drop the cup of folly, in the Coteric: occupied by vulgar gaiety, in brilliant assemblies, or at luxurious boards, that the mind grows familiar with those tender and sublime sentiments which subdue the desires of sensuality, ennoble all the enjoyments of this life, raise the passing moment into importance by connecting it with the events of futurity, and banish from a transitory life the extravagant fondness for the dissipations of the world.

In solitude we behold more near and intimately that providence which overlooks all. Silence continually recals to our minds the consolatory idea, the mild and satisfactory sentiment, that the eye of the Almighty is for ever viewing the actions of his creatures; that he superintends all our movements; that we are governed by his power and preserved by his goodness. In solitude, the Deity is every where before us. Emancipated from the dangerous fermentations of sense, guided by nobler inclinations, possessed of pure, unalter. able joys, we contemplate with seriousness and vigour, with freedom and with confidence, the attainment of supreme felicity, and enjoy in thought the happiness we expect to reach. In this holy meditation every ignoble sentiment, every painful anxiety, every worldly thought and vulgar care, vanish from the mind.

Solitude has already brought us nearer to God, when, beside all the tender and humane feelings of the heart, we feel those salutary sensations which a distrust and jealousy of our own abilities create; sensations which in public life, make light and transient impressions, and fade so soon away, When at the bed of sickness, I behold the efforts which the soul makes to oppose its impending dissolution from the body, and notwithstanding, discover by the increasing tortures, the rapid advances of approaching death ; when I see my unhappy patient extend his cold and trembling hands to thank the Almighty for the smallest mitigation of his pains; when I hear his utterance checked by intermingled groans, and view the tender looks and silent language of his attending friends; all my powers abandon me, my heart bleeds, and I tear myself from the sorrowful scene, to pour my tears more freely over the unhappy sufferings of humanity, to la. ment my own inability, and the vain confidence placed in a feeble art; a confidence which men have been so forward to abuse. Con. scious of the inefficacy of art, I never rise from my bed without thinking it a heavenly miracle that I am still alive. When I count the number of my years, I exclaim with the liveliest gratitude, that God has preserved my life beyond my expectation. Through what a sea of dangers has his goodness conducted me! Reflecting every moment on the weakness of my condition, and beholding imen suddenly snatched away before me in the prime and vigour of life ; men who, but a few hours before, entertained no fear of death, and reck. oned, perhaps, on an extended length of days; what can I do, but offer up my silent adorations to that Providence who has thus saved me from the menaces of death!

ORIGINAL DOCUMENTS,

: [NO. XI.]
LETTER TO THE REV, MR. JARVIS.

LONDON, JUNE 26, 1784. My Dear Sir,

I HAVE now to inform you that I received on the 17th inst Mr. Leaming's letter, inclosing the act of the legislature of Connectícut, respecting liberty of conscience in that state. Upon the

whole, I think it a liberal one ; and if it be fairly interpreted and abided by, fully adequate to all good purposes. I have had a long conversation with the Archbishop of Canterbury, and another with the Archbishop of York, on the act. They seem to think the principal objections are removed as far as you or I are concerned. They spoke handsomely of the clergy of Connecticut, and declared themselves satisfied with your humble servant, whom the clergy were pleased to recommend to them. But I apprehend there are some difficulties here that may not easily be got over. These arise from the restrictions the Bishops are under about consecrating without the King's leave, and the doubt seems to be about the King's leave to consecrate a Bishop who is not to reside in his dominions; and about the validity of his dispensing with the oath, in case he has power to grant leave of consecration. I have declared my opinion, which is, that as there is no law existing relative to a Bishop who is to reside in a foreign state, the Archbishops are left to the general laws of the Christian Church, and have no need either of the King's leave or dispensation. But the opinion of so little a man cannot have much weight. The Archbishop of Canterbury supposes that an act of Parliament will be necessary ; yet he wishes to get through the business, if possible, without it, and acknowledged that the opinion of the majority of the Bishops differed from his. The questions are referred to the attorney and solicitor-general, and their opinion, should they agree, will, I presume, determine the point. This opinion, I hope, will be obtained in a short time, as the Archbishop of Canterbury has promised to consult them. Should I know the result time enough, I will give it you by the next packet, which will sail in a fortnight.

I have had opportunities of consulting some very respectable clergymen in this matter, and their invariable opinion is, that should I be disappointed here, where the business had been so fairly, candidly and honourably pursued, it would become my duty to obtain Episcopal consecration wherever it can be had, and that no exception could be taken here at my doing so. The Scotch succession was named. It was said to be equal to any succession in the world, &c. There I know consecration may be had : But with regard to this matter, I hope to hear from you in answer to a letter I wrote to Mr. Leaming, I think in April. Should I receive any instructions from the clergy of Connecticut, I shall attend to them ; if not, I shall act according to the best advice I can get, and my own judgment.

Believe me, there is nothing I have so much at heart as the accomplishment of the business you have entrusted to my management; and I am ready to make every sacrifice of worldly consideration that may stand in the way of its completion.

I am, reverend Sir,
with the greatest esteem,
your and the Clergy's
most obedient servant,

SAMUEL SEABURY. ,

[NO. XII.]
LETTER to TRE CLERGE OF connecticut.

LONDON, JULY 26, 1784. GENTLEMEN,

I TAKE the opportunity by Mr. Townsend to write to you, although I have little more to say than I have already said in my late letters.

On the 21st inst. I had an interview with the Archbishop of Canterbury. I was with him an hour. He entered fully and warmly into my business; declared himself fully sensible of the expediency, justice and necessity of the measure; and also of the necessity of its being carried immediately into execution. An act of parliament however will be requisite to enable the Bishops to proceed without incurring a Premunise. A bill for this purpose I am encouraged to expect will be brought in as soon as the proper steps are taken to ensure it an easy passage thround the two Houses. The previous measures are now concerting, and I am flattered with every prospect of success : But every thing here is attended with uncertainty till it is actually done. Men or measures, or both, may be changed to-morrow, and then all will be to go through again. However, I shall patiently wait the issue of the present session of parliament, which, it is the common opinion, will continue a month longer. If nothing be done, I shall give up the matter here as unattainable, and apply to the North, unless I should receive contrary directions from the Clergy of Connecticut.

The various difficulties I have had to struggle with, and the various steps I have taken to get through them, are too long to communicate by letter; but I hope to spend the next winter in Connecticut, and then you shall know all, at least all that I shall remember.

My best regards attend the Clergy and all my friends and the friends of the Church. I hope yet to spend some happy years with them.

Accept, my good brethren,
the best wishes of your affectionate
humble servant,

SAMUEL SEABURY.

ECCLESIASTICAL NEWS.

- ON Wednesday the 4th of inst. June, was holden at Cheshire the annual Convention of the Bishop, Clergy, and Laity, of the Protestant Episcopal Church of the state of Connecticut : At half past 10 o'clock, A. M. a procession was formed from the house of the Rev. Mr. Ives, consisting of the members of the Convention in proper order, preceded by the Students of the Episcopal Academy, and proceeded to the Church, where divine service was attended. The Rev. Mr. Burhans, of Newtown read prayers, and a sermon was de livered by the Rev. Mr. Tyler of Norwich, from 2 Corinthians, 3d ch. 5th verse. Not that we are sufficient of ourselves, to think any thing as of ourselves, but our sufficiency is of God. From which the

« PoprzedniaDalej »