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the subject of preaching ; a concern; it is the principal subject on which much has means of communicating to been written, and on which many persońs whatever knowlwhatever is written well will edge they possess on these subbe interesting to theological jects; it operates as a powerstudents, and to all who rightly ful restraint upon vice by often estimate the value of christian holding it up to public disgrace institutions. It is characteriz- and infamy in its proper coled by great good sense, ex- ours, and by the delineation of cellent christian feeling, and a its hurtful and tremendous constyle of uncommon simplicity sequences in the present and and perspicuity, sometimes future world ; and, as a powhighly animated, though ape erful incentive and encourageproaching sometimes, it might ment to virtue by the exhibibe said, to too great familiarity. tion of its high motives and obThe desire of being useful, ligations in the light of reliwhich, it very properly states, gion ; lastly, it contributes in should be the object of every the most efficacious manner to discourse, is visible from the be- refine and elevate in the commuginning to the end. Nothing nity the standard of moral and is said merely for the sake of religious sentiment. To alt saying something, but every these valuable purposes it is thing with some good purpose clearly adapted ; to all these in view.
valuable purposes, wherever We notice this sermon in it is enjoyed, it more or less part for the purpose of present contributes ; efen in its lowest ing portions of it to those of form it is a considerable instruour readers who may not oth- ment of instruction and pera erwise have an opportunity of suasion." perusing it, and with the hope The preacher waves all disof inducing many to read the cussion of the question, " why whole. The introduction con- it is not more efficacious than tains the following comprehen- it is;” but intimates that it sive remarks on the value and may be attributed in part to efficacy of public preaching. preachers and in part to heak
« An institution more favour- If our readers are desirable and conducive to the best ous of knowing how they should interests of the community, to hear in order that preaching social order, to private and may not be lost upon them, we public virtue than that of pub- strongly recommend to their lic christian instruction, can- perusal a very fine sermon of not be devised. It contributes the late Mr. Buckminster. It to these purposes by rendering is a subject which demands the the subjects of religion and serious attention of all; and morals, which in the multiplic- although it was not the design ity of secular concerns would of the preacher to discuss it, by a great part of mankind be yet he felt too much its imporwholly overlooked, matters of tance, and the shameful listgeneral reflection, inquiry and lessness of very many hearers, to neglect it entirely ; but port; I would to God that you speaks poititedly of that " neg. could for one moment enter tigence and want of seriousness into the feelings of an honest on the part of hearers, that ute and faithful minister, and no. ter unconsciousness of their thing would tempt you to think own immediate and personal of him so unjustly and to treat concern in the subject, which him so unkindly ; miserable so often renders the best re- and contemptible indeed is ligious discourses ineffectual." that minister, who can suffer His address to the assembly even for the shortest time such in closing, is to the same pure motives to occupy the place in pose, and very striking. his heart, which belongs only
“ The success of our faith to the high considerations of ful labours rests under God's religion. On the contrary anblessing with you, and this imate his exertions, soothe his we wish, brethren, even your toils, quicken his zeal, reward perfection,* and this we pray his labours by . lending to him that your love for God," for a listening ear,' and an underChrist and for mankind, your standing heart ;' by your preslove for christian truth and ence and sympathy ; by your christian virtue may abound cordial reception and serious yet more in knowledge and in and conscientious improvement all judgementt. While the se- of his services." rious and faithful minister We were glad to find in the gives you his best services and excellent Charge which ac. consecrates his labours and companies, a reproof upon the talents to truth, humanity, vir- same subject. tue and piety, chill not his ar.
« Think those discourses dour by neglect or indiffer the best, which contain the ence ; do not torture and op; most cogent persuasions to repress him with a grief and sickness at heart, which is in. pentance and a holy life, the expressible, when he enters
hearers of which depart from the house of God to join and and thoughtful, instead of in
the house of worship silent to guide your devotions and to address his friends and fellow quiring of news, giving invitamen on the most momentous
tions !o a party, descanting on subjects of human concern in
the merits of the speaker, diGod's behalf, to find himself sesting plans of business, and forsaken by those whom it is many other improprieties of a
like kind." his first desire to serve, and compelled to spend his strength We say that we are glad upon naked walls and vacant to see remarks of this nature, seats. Think not that your because we think something duty is done, when you have needs to be done in every contributed what the laws of christian society, to rouse men the land require you to con- from the astonishing thoughttribute to his pecuniary sup- lessness of their attendance on
* 2 Cor. xiii. 9. Philippians i. Vol. VI.-No. 3.
religious services--their nege and credit ; and the only obligence when present, and the jects worth living for are those easy pretences upon which in regard to which we are althey excuse their absence ; ways to remain entirely un
as if," it was once excellent. moved. ly said, “it were a matter “ My friends, one is wearied between themselves and their with the cry of enthusiasm and minister, and not something fanaticism from men who be. very different
lieve as little as they can, and In this connexion we quote feel still less than they believe, an admirable passage on the and with hearing perpetually earnest eloquence with which in respect to those persons, religious truths should be whose hearts are interested in preached
their religion, that they are. “ Religion disdains all the under a delusion. We have artifices and tricks of oratory, lived long enough in a world but it demands the aid of true without souls ;' we should reeloquence. There is an ese member that we are advance sential and inherent majesty in ing to a "world without bothe truths of religion which, dies ;' and until the two great when presented in their sim- commandments on which hang: plest form, are sometimes ir all the law and the prophets resistible ; but their effect is
are expunged from the chris. then most powerful when im- tian system, until the final con-agination throws over them sequences of our actions in the her vivid colours and they find retribution of God cease to be their way to the heart by the objects deserving of our ambiblaze of the affections.
tion or our dread, we need not “ But eloquence perhaps fear to excite men to worship must be discarded from relig- the Deity in spirit, as well as ion, because it sometimes im- in truth ; and remembering plies an appeal to the passions, always, that with the heart and men must not, we are told, man believeth unto righteousbecome enthusiasts in religion. ness,* we may appeal to every O no! they may be concerned sentiment of love and gratitude, about their business, their of desire or aversion, of hope pleasures, their politics, but or fear, to secure them from their religion is a matter about the ruin of vice, and to animate which they need feel no con- and urge them forward in the cern. They may be fired with practice of christian virtue." ambition in the pursuit of We hope our readers will wealth, learning and honour, join with us in admiring the bat religion and virtue are to spirit of this passage.
We be contemplated and pursued are weary almost to death of without emotion. Religion the fear of enthusiasm ; and must be to us a business of ve verily believe that it is now cold, mercenary calculation ; the last thing we have to fear. our accounts with heaven are There is no danger of one's to be kept by a regular debit being too much interested in
* Rom. i, 10.
the religion of his own soul, credit those sentiments and or of making himself more feelings? Is it reasonable, good than he ought to be. because a weak mind has used There is no danger of a man's a thing intemperately, to ashaving too much religion for cribe the evil to the thing it Heaven ; but there is very self? and therefore to imagine great danger of his having too that all attachment, all warmth little, and the cry of fanatic and earnestness must be suphas made many content with pressed ? 'as if it were not pos.too little--has made many sible to be warm, without bethink themselves good chris- ing consumed, to glow, withtians, who had nothing to do out scorching ; as if the only with religion but going to security for a rational being church and paying their debts must be cautious and guarded who were afraid to open a coldness ? Certainly there must religious book except on Sun- be, there is, a niedium. It day, or to go into their closets can be no more reasonable at all, lest they should stay in from the fear of excessive enthem too long, or be affected thusiasm, to check religious too deeply ; and it has occa. feeling and keep down the arsioned multitudes, since Paul, dour of devotion, than it can be to be though: “ mad,” when to rush headlong into fanatithey were only giving decent cism from the fear of luke. heed to the 6 words of truth warmness and indifference. and soberness."
There is an equal want of right We know indeed that relig- judgement in each. God is to ious zeal may become extrava. be loved as well as obeyed ; gant and dangerous. Fanatic- and we pity those men who ism has given proof that it is have trained themselves to look not from God ; and we do not without emotion on all that is wonder that men should avoid grand and delightful in his proit. But is it necessary in or. vidence and promises ; who der to avoid it, to fly to the will not be touched and who opposite extreme ? Cannot refuse to feel ; and whose best we escape the scorching sun feelings have been so pervert. of the equator, except we rushed, that when any thing like to the polar snows? It is true, ardour or interest in personal that an undisciplined and un religion is recommended, they controlled imagination ravés have no ears to hear, because as wildly and as loosely when they think you mean to recomfastened on religion, as it mend overmuch righteousness. would on any other subject; The inconsistency of the and perhaps more so, from its world is most melancholy. A superior importance. It rush- man may
be concerned es to extravagance and irregu- about business, pleasures, poli
arity But what then ? Must tics, but not about religion." these, because mingled with He may be an enthusiast in certain religious sentiments literature, in science, in arts, and feelings, bring into dis. and in war, may devote to them
all the faculties of the spirit customs, and rites, of which which was made to live foreve many hearers have but very er, and it is honourable. But imperfect conceptions; that if he deeply engage the pow. the force of these allusions ers of his immortal soul, on in- therefore is not always perceiv: terests equally immortal,—if çd; and that, when improperly he employ the high' faculties, applied or understood, they may which can search through nae convey very erroneous impres. ture and grasp the most amazsions. Thus the epistle to the ing truths, in the service of Hebrews is filled with refer, Him who gave them, with a ences, often misinterpreted, to little more than common anx: the rites, sacrifices, and insti. iety to prove their alliance to tụtions of the Jewish economy. Him,-how many are prepar: We may add that phrases of ed to wonder at and pity him! this kind come to the mind ac
But we must check our re; companied with a sentiment of marks, and only detain our their sanctity which leads us readers while we present them to assent to them without ex. a passage respecting perpetual amination ;' and, the language and indiscriminate quotation of the scriptures having be, from the Scriptures, which we come very familiar, we often think well deserying their ato think we understand it when tention, and particularly the we do not, and it is frequently remark, with its fine illustra- heard and read without proţion, which we have marked ducing any distinct or vivid with italics." We hope they impression. Thus it often will think of it when they read happens that members of our the Bible in future.
own family, for whom we en• “ The incessant use of scrip- tertain the highest respect and tural phrases, in whole or in affection, may pass through part, disjointed or connected, the room in which we are sittdoes not appear, to me to be ing, without any distinçt confavourable to perspicuity. I sciousness on our part of their have tho highest 'reverence entrance or departạre, their for the majesty, and the noble manners obseryalions : and beautiful simplicity of the whereas, if they were only ocscriptures. The language of casional visitors, we should rethem may often be directlyceive them with particular quoted with great propriety courtesy and attention. Noth-, and effect, but the indiscriming, which I have said, will be inate use of it is not always to construed into a want of rebe approved. It deserves to spect for the scriptures, but be considered, that the lan. by those persons who wish to guage of the common transļa: misunderstand me, and I am tion of the seriptures is not persuaded there are none such the language of our times ; present. The scriptures are that the scriptures are often occasionally quoted with an highly figurative and abound aptness, elegance, force, and with allusions to circamstances, effect, singularly striking, bus