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of order; for, besides that, this will all tion should a Believer in' Revelation be rectified at last, it is God's cosmos dedicate his property to the cause of we are at present speaking of, and not God ?” man's chaos.
“ The Jewish Law of Tithe, a Guide “This universal harmony without to Christian Liberality."-By the finds its mirror in the microcosm of the Rev. R. Spence, A.M. human spirit within. The soul, rightly “ The Christian Weekly Offering; or strung, will be nature's æolian harp, the scriptural principle and rule of vibrating to her breath, and giving self-assessment in the dedication of back her melodies ; or, like the fabled property."-By the Rev. J. Ross. Memnonium, it will warm under her “ The Christian Steward, an Essay smile till it becomes vocal with the on the right appropriation of the praise of nature's God. All the genuine profits of business, salaries, wages, products of the human soul shadow and income in general.” forth this harmony. All virtue is but the harmony of moral relationship-of
The reader is to understand that the all harmony the loftiest and the best. authors belong to
different Christian All science is knowledge harmonized.
communities. One is an EpiscopaAll art, whether it addresses the eye or lian clergyman, the second is a Presbythe ear, is but the vesture or the echo terian minister, the third is a Scotch of the indwelling sentiment of harmony dissenter, the fourth is an English nonand beauty. All poetry, that deserves conformist
, and the fifth a layman ; and the name, is truth and loyalty to nature, that as the scheme in the first instance within or without,
and has thus been originated with Baptists and Wesleyan grandly defined as 'musical thought. Methodists, it may be regarded as comAnd religion is the gathering up and bining the suffrage and sympathy of the sanctification of these and all other the largest evangelical denominations genuine things, and the consecration of in the United Kingdom.” them all to the God of the whole
Concerning the authors we shall only earth.' The more truly religious, ac- ask — What is a layman ? From the cordingly, the human being becomes, above we may conclude that he is not the more will his heart beat in harmony an Episcopalian clergyman, Presbyte with itself, with external nature, with rian minister, Scotch dissenter, or Éngrational being-above all, with God.”
lish nonconformist. Perhaps the question may be best answered thus-a layman is a creature of God, while clergy
men of the Established Church, and “ GOLD AND THE GOSPEL.” Presbyterian ministers are creatures of
priestism. The layman, too, in this case IN olden time, when the Apostles acted in harmony with his origin-his ruled, churches had money enough and ministerial competitors accepted their to spare. Now they get on badly, and portion of the prize fund-he
approprihave offered, with a view to improve- ated his towards the expense of publicament, £100 for the essay best calculated tion. to teach them how to give. This offer One purpose this volume will cerproduced a handsome volume, entitled tainly serve. It will show that wide
Gold and the Gospel : the Ulster departures from apostolic procedure Prize Essays on the scriptural duty of have not proved efficient—that letting giving in proportion to means and in- seats in theatrical style, falling back
upon popular orators, begging sermons, The book consists of five essays se- concerts, fancy fairs, lotteries, excurlected from fifty-one, which were sub- sions, and other not more reputable mitted to eminent adjudicators. The schemes, will not answer the holders following are the titles :
of the “sordid dust” cannot be induced “ The Measure of Christian Liberal- to throw out sufficient quantities to reity;" —By the Rev. H. Constable, churches, without these more than
plenish the bins, while the apostolic A.M. “ The Scripture Rule of Religious to spare.
questionable means, had enough and Contribution; or in what propor- The first essay commences with a
new appropriation of the leading maxim from heaven she came to earth, and thence of a celebrated modern Socialist, “Pro- went back a welcome visitant to her original perty is crime," and shows that while home, the bosom of God. No worship of man has a right to property towards man's own choosing, i.e. no heresy, was ever his fellow-man, he has none towards his acceptable to God; to all such he replies, God. Nothing which he possesses is Who hath required this at your hands P So God exacts from those who persuaded was Mr. Hallet of the force of this,
that he does not hesitate to pronounce that hold his talents a strict account.
God's acceptance of Abel's offering was a 'de. “Oh, vain man of the world, with thy monstration of its being in obedience to the heart set upon thy treasures, be they great or divine commandment, according to that oblittle, with the firm purpose to use them for vious maxim of all true religion, 'In vain do thyself, and to call them and think them thine they worship me, teaching for doctrines the own, in what light does Scripture place thee ? commandments of men.” Even apparently Thou art in its searching eye but the usurper minute and unimportant matters have not been of another's rights—the breaker of a trast thought by God unworthy of notice, or the which thy God has given thee-the earuer of deviation from them uudeserving of condemvengeance when he comes to call thee to ac
nation. How minute, for example, are the count.
Cease, then, to speak directions of the Levitical law, and yet how of your possessions as your own : be wise, and sorely was their iufraction punished, as witness call them what they are-a trust from your the account of Korah and his company, of God.”
Uzzah, and many others.” After urging that God is the disposer That the author, however, cannot of all things that he has not resigned distinguish Christianity from Judaism, to man the absolute disposal of even a will be seen from the following :- portion of his trust-it asserts, that as
“ As the Scriptures of the Old and New • The wide ocean might seem to be without Testaments, then, are essentially the same, so a master, rolling its huge billows where it the churches ruled by both are essentially one. pleased, were it not met by that restraining They are not two churches.' shore-those bars and doors which he hath What is done away with we can only learn, placed who said to it, 'Thus far shalt thou either from those Scriptures themselves, or come, and no farther; and here shall thy proud from those of the New Testament, or from waves be stayed,' so might man imagine hiin- both. Whatever cannot be proved from self without a superior-the original, not the these sonrces to be abrogated, must be condelegated, lord of this lower world, unless he sidered still in force. We will show, then, too were met with a bound beyond which he not only that no such abrogation exists in the might not pass ; unless, in the disposal of his matter of the tenth, but that, on the contrary, property there were a portion placed out of
we have every fair and sufficient reason for his discretion, of which God had said, 'This concluding that its obligation is continued in may not be used for thy pleasure, it is mine.' "
the Christian dispensation.” Next follow several chapters design
The next four chapters relate to ed to prove a tenth was required of Christian free-will offerings
over and mankind from the “ earliest times," and above the tenth," the objects upon which that the requirement was re-enacted they are to be expended, motives to under Moses, and continued under this liberality, and tests of covetousness. In dispensation. Abraham and Jacob, in arranging for the expenditure, our good offering a tenth, are adduced on the curate seems inclined to take care of ground, that these ancient worthies number one, and consequently places were not supporters of will-worship, the support of ministers first which consists in adding to, or taking support of the gospel ministry occupies from, Divine appointments. We trust the leading place" - their education, " the evangelical denominations” which then missionary enterprises, and THEN have countenanced this volume will the poor of the household of faith. Of learn the lesson. How the author, who course we say-let the last be first. is a curate in the diocese of Cork, will The second essay contains ten chapmake it square with the practice of his ters with the following headings :—The own church, it may be hard to say: We Bible, Abraham, Jacob, Moses, Day of leave him to apply the following lines : Pentecost, Macedonia and Corinth, The
" True worship never sprang from the earth, First Day of the Week, Examples, Misand ascended with acceptance to heaven ; but cellaneous, Conclusion.
Perhaps the gist of this essay can be ferently under the present dispensation. Es. given in one quotation.
sentially and substantially they teach the same
lessons." "It is taught that, 'the gospel of Christ leaves the question (how much ?) to be deter- After this confounding of dispensamined by Christians themselves '--that while tions, there are many noble remarks
we may venture to say that one tenth of our contrasting the liberal bestowment of whole income is an approved proportion of the first Christians with the miserable charity,' this is to be understood only of those
contributions of modern congregations. who, with so doing, are able to support themselves and families—that there are some for The time of religious contributions is
then marked whom to give 'a twentieth or fiftieth would require the nicest frugality and care'-and
Above all, it should be carefully noted that ‘of many among the poor it may be said, under what powerful impressions and motives if they give anything they give their share.' the Apostle would have our minds, when we Are these representations in accordance with would'thus habitually devote our property to the revealed will of God? We hold that they God. On the first day of the week! What are inconsistent with it. It is our belief that a associations are connected with that day! law for the regulation of giving is laid down in
In almost no instance is the aposthe Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments. tolic rule, in this matter, obeyed. In a large It is our conviction that no one, takiug these proportion of the churches of these lands no for his guide, can devote less than a tenth of religionis contribution is made on the first day his available income to the cause of God. of the week. In many, a halfpenny or penny He may give more, as much more as he will, may statedly be given. But as to meeting or his circumstances warrant; but less be can
the spirit of the letter of the apostolic rule, not possibly give, and act consistently with where shall we find it? Personal enjoyment the inspired standard of man's duty. The and protit seem to be the grand absorbing case of a pauper in a poor. house may be objects of attendance upon public worship. pleaded against this view; but what income we go to receive good, and forget the Apostle has he? He has none, and where there is no also taught us we should no less go to do good. income, there is no obligation. Let that pau. To do good and to communicate forget not, per, however, receive a shilling from the pass- for with such sacrifices is God well pleased. ing visitant, and he
bound to recognize the It is to be feared we are in no readiness to act claim of God to at least the tenth. Yes! and
upon this apostolic rule.” he may devote it to him with as high a principle and as holy an affection as he who gives After a just condemnation of modern his thousands out of his great abundance. Or
beggingism, the following acceptable we may be told of others who are sunk in debt
words occur :and under obligations which they are unable to discharge ; but what comes to them is not
“Can you point out a way to fill the extheir own, it is the just property of their credi- hausted treasury ? Yes, and a simple one too tors, and can only pass through their hands
- a way simpler and easier far than that which to them. Every man must be able to say
is at present pursued, and as moch more effiwith David, in his religious contributions, I cient, as it is easier and simpler. It is just to have of mine own proper good given to the return to the apostolic counsel, 'On the first house of my God.' . Let the subject be cleared day of the week’ give your substance to the of all extraneous matter-let the question cause of God. It is obvious he means, not as stand in its simplicity, What proportion of we seem to have understood it, a special day his income should a believer in Revelation selected now and again, but every first day of dedicate to the cause of God? And without the week.' Wherever the church of Christ hesitation it is affirmed he cannot consistently assembles on that day, let members give what give less than a tenth. It will be observed their pains-taking has enabled them to provide the phrase, a believer in Revelation is used for the cause of God.” designedly, for our appeal is to the whole word of God. The Jewish and the Christian Scrip- The third essay seems decidedly more tures are not being paraded against each other healthy in regard to the Old Law. as though they inculcated different or contrary doctrines. They are together the exposition “Thus it appears that, under the Old Testaof one system of religion, but the religion is ment dispensation, liberality to the cause of throughout one and the same.
The same God was a moral duty, as it is now--the dismoral law pervades the Old and New Testa. ference being that a tenth was then stated to ments. Their principles are identical. These be the proportion which should be given, are tanght in a peculiar manner under the an- whereas now every Christian has to determine cient economy, and they are brought out dif- | for himself what he ought to give."
State churches might learn a lesson to Christ! Perhaps you would not feel the from the few words following- loss so much as you think. There are many
of the things which cause balf the expense of " It does not seem that any provision was life without the least use, and not a few which made by the law of Moses for the recovery of destroy its comfort, manliness, respectability, tithe, if the people proved unwilling to pay it. freshness, and facility.” * The rendering of what was due was simply a matter of religious obligation, and where this This essay concludes with an exhorfailed the claim could not be enforced by any tation to which we shall do well to take constraint of law' (Fairbairn's Typology, vol. heed. 2, p. 336.) “The payment aud appreciation
“ The day of the Lord, in which we shall of them, (the tithes) Moses left to the con
have to give an account of our stewardship, is sciences of the people
, without subjecting them rapidly approaching; our time for service will to judicial or sacerdotal visitations' (Horne, p. soon end." Then will it be found, that he only 298.) This is manifest from the absence of any who sowed bountifully shall reap bountifully, allusion to the legal machinery which would while he who sowed sparingly shall reap spahave been requisite for its enforcement, from ringly. What reflection for a death-bed will the silence of the historical facts of Scripture it be? What a thought for eternity! I respecting the occurrence of such a case, and
wore a better dress, ate richer food, occupied still more from the expostulations addressed to the Israelites when they withheld their tithe.” | larger sum of money, by my parsimony to the
a more splendid house, and left behind me a
Lord's cause.' How different will be his reNotwithstanding that the law of the flections who can look back upon his pilgri. tenth is not held binding, it is presented mage and see that he might have had to toil as a standard which the Christian may less severely, and made a little better show in weil use in measuring his contribution. the world, had he not given a tenth to the Objections to this measuring of libe- Lord! Will he then regret his toil? Will rality are stated and met. For instance: he lament his liberality? No, he has sown to
the Spirit, and shall of the Spirit reap life “ We cannot afford it. This, if true, is sufficient excuse. God hates robbery for burnt everlasting. He has made to himself friends
of the mammon of uprighteousness, and he offering, and would not have his service made
will be received into everlasting habitations. heavy and grievous : ' Let every man give ac
These two courses are before 11s, with their recording as he purposeth in his heart, not grudgingly, or of necessity, for the Lord loveth spective terminations, and we must choose be
tween them. a cheerful giver' (2 Cor. ix. 7.) This
May God give to every reader excuse, however, will often be adduced where grace and wisdom to weigh aright this most it ought not, as a cloak for covetousness; his convictions of duty. Amen.”
important duty, and to act in it according to where, were the light of eternity beaming round the soul, and the love of Jesus warming While sects are seeking to restore the the heart, a fifth would not be thought too one contribution, let us thank God and much. Let us look at this excuse a little more attend to “ the fellowship” in a manner minutely. We would say to the believer, it is acceptable to Him. Let us rejoice that probably quite true that your income barely the truth is prevailing, and that though equals your expenditure already, and that even a very little addition to the latter would prove
we may now say “it is neither light
nor dark,” (a sort of twilight, truth and more than you could bear. But is it indispensably necessary that your expenditure error in conflict) “yet at eventide it
shall be light.” should be quite so large as it is ? Must you have these elegancies and luxuries? Is there
Further remarks on the two remaindo needless expense for unnoticed fineries and formalities? Must you have them, even
ing essays in our next. though your neighbour should in conseqnence want a Bible ? You would miss them--would you? And is this the utmost of your attachment to Christ and his salvation, that you will
“ WHAT NEXT & WHAT NEXT ?" give him what you will not miss ? Was this the measure of his love to you? Miss them!
SEVEN years back one of the leading Aye, and so you should. You can uever know spirits of Congregationalism declared how precious Christ is to you, until you deny
that changes would come because yourself for him. What a warm gush of cheer- they must" — that “ the existing denoful love wou'd rise up spontaneously within minations liad almost done their work.” your heart, if you felt that you were inaking More recently the Congregational Union real sacrifices, not to fashion and custom, buť of England and Wales has propounded
an important question, but, unfortu- when it has ceased to be a mighty innately, left it unanswered, i. e. How fluence, and when to move the many is it that our churches have little or no we must come still nearer to Christihold upon the masses ?" Since the put- anity. ting forth of that question, the only ad- Manchester may be looked upon as a vance seems to have been to a state of stronghold of Congregationalism. There such internal confusion, that this year it has progressed–has its college, docthe Annual Meeting of the Union has tors, steeples, and great respectability, not been held. Light and darkness yet the leading Manchester paper, positive and negative theology — have though most friendly in its tone, gives been doing battle, and in some quarters the subjoined impartial summing up :developing not a little“ negative morality. But what is to come? Some
“We venture then to ask whether the memthing nearer to Christianity. Congre-bers of the Congregational denominations in gationalism, however, has not been to Manchester are perfectly satisfied with their man-to nations-an unprofitable ser- present position? Are we to suppose that an ag. vant. Last week the celebration of the gregate of 3,500 church members, and 17,000 Centenary of Manchester Indepen
attendants on public worship, adequately dency”, gave rise to the following just represents the spiritual power which Congre
gationalism ought to exert among the vast remarks :
population of this city: We might extend “The true founders of the United States the query so as to embrace every other existing were, not WASHINGTON and his colleagues in denomination. It is gratifying to see places the war of the Revolution, but those pilgrim opened for public worship; but bricks and fathers who, in December, 1620, landed on the mortar do not constitute Christianity, and are bleak shores of New Eugland, choosing rather in themselves no proofs of religious progress. to brave the privations of exile than bend their Every thoughtful man must recognize the vast consciences to the prelatical tyranny theu gulf which exists between the religious derampant at home. The Nouconformists who nominations and the multitudes outside. The then left their native shores were uncon
former constitute a charmed circle; they move sciously the instruments of founding a free in a world of their own; their principles are empire, which, after the lapse of two centuries, misunderstood; their language is scarcely in. rivals the oldest European states in population, telligible ; and while the spirit of Christianity, industry, commerce, education, and political and a certain reverence for religious truth, are power, and whose future influence upon man.
on the increase; while the old race of scoffers kind it is all but impossible to over estimate. is almost extinct, and you can hardly meet But there were Nonconformists left at home, with a person who does not admit the importCROMWELL and Milton to wit, whose achieve. auce of religion as a branch of moral culture, ments in a narrower sphere are entitled to a
the estrangement of the people from the instiniche of equal renown.
One of them sent a
tutions of Christianity is certainly not on the king to the scaffold, and the divine right of wane. Is there no cause for this anomaly? kings along with him ; the other embalmed in Can no reason be assigned why the influence of immortal language the noblest aspirations of organizations which professedly aim only at universal freedom. The political influence of embodying Christian truth, shonld be so narNonconformity did not expire with the Restora
row in its range? Whether is it likelier that tion. The attempts which were made to ex
the fault exists in the truth itself, or in its hutinguish it provoked a reaction, which made man expounders ? The ecclesiastical polity of itself felt when William Of Orange landed Congregationalism is peculiarly adapted to at Torbay. The theory of the revolution was,
make progress, and that because it rests upon in fact, the same as that which had been a recognition of human freedom, the right of matured half a century earlier in the writings self-government, and the sole sovereignty of the and speeches of Nonconforniists, -republican conscience in all religious matters. These are principles, adapted to the exigencies of mon
noble principles: to them, ultimately, all reliarchical rule, and resulting in that compromise gious communities must come: but are they between despotism and democracy whose best clearly understood and legitimately developed type and monument is the British constitution. by those who make them their chief boast ? How large is our indebtedness to the same
Does not a religious profession, as ordinarily quarter for the impulse which has slowly ex
understood, involve in it a human yoke of bontended the domain of civil and religious free dage-a submission to a series of conventional dom !"
requirements, of which not one word is said in
the New Testament, and which, however they This is, however, no reason why Con- may be willing to bear it to whom education bas gregationalism should stand in the way, made it easy, is utterly repellaot to all beside.”