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REFLECTIONS ON prayer, by Asaph, are received and approved. They shall appear in subsequent numbers. In these communications we recognise the hand of a respected friend, from whom we hope frequently to hear.
We have received the remarks of Philalethes. One of his subjects would not be interesting at the present day. The other might answer a good purpose in the form of a pamphlet.
Sketches of Professor Tappan, No. 3. will appear the next month. Christophilus should be readily gratified with the insertion of his sensible remarks, in the Panoplist, (though we cannot subscribe to the correctness of his theological sentiments,) could we be assured they would not lead on to discussions, incompatible with the design and usefulness of this publication.
Communications from Phi Beta, and from Petros shall receive due
The third Letter of Constans, came too late for this number. Our readers shall be gratified with it in our next.
Zuinglius will accept our thanks for his serious and pertinent observations, inserted in this number.
Crito is requested to continue his biblical criticisms.
The Anecdotes sent by Amicus were evidently collected with a very pious design, and may, in certain circumstances, be related with good effect. They are not exactly suited to the nature of the Panoplist.
We are much obliged to the Friend, who sent us the account of a charitable institution in St. Christophers. We shall be happy to make so excellent an institution, as extensively known, as possible.
We thank H. for his valuable communication, which shall have an early insertion.
Poetry. "The Widow's God," and "My Jesus," are under consideration.
THE Editors, with much satisfiction, inform their patrons and the publick, that their list of subscribers is already so large and so fast increasing, that they have determined to give forty eight pages in future numbers, instead of forty, as promised in their proposals, without adding to the price.
*.* DELAYS and irregularities in delivering the numbers, complained of in some cases, have been unavoidable. Care will be taken to remedy them in future.
+++ SUBSCRIBERS will please to recollect that payment is to be made for their numbers quarterly, to ASHUR ADAMS, of Charlestown, Agent for the Editors. Punctuality in the payments is respectfully solicited.
ERRATUM.-) -Page 116, col. 2. 1. 30. for distinguishing, read disguising.
AGENTS FOR THE PANOPLIST.
Rev. MIGHILL BLOOD, Buckstown ;-Mr. E. GOODALE, Hallowell ;THOMAS CLARK, bookseller, Portland ;—W. & D TREADWELL, do. Portsmouth;-THOMAS & WHIPPLE, do. Newburyport ;-CUSHING & APPLETON, do. Salem;-EDWARD COTTON, do. Boston;-ISAIAH THOMAS, do. Worcester;-WILLIAM BUTLER, do. Northampton;-WHITING, BACKUS & WHITING, do. Albany ;T. & J. SWORDS, do. New York;-WM. P. FARRAND, do. Philadelphia ;-WM. WILKINSON, do. Providence ;-ISAAC BEERS & Co. do. New Haven ;-O. D. Cook, do. Hartford ;-Mr. BENJAMIN CUMMINGS, Windsor, Ver. ;-Mr. Les, Bath, Me
THE CHRISTIAN'S ARMORY.
SKETCHES OF THE LIFE AND CHAR- attachment to his people was fo
ACTER OF PROFESSOR TAPPAN.
[Continued from page 51.]
ftrong, and he esteemed his relation to them fo intimate and facred, that he did not determine upon a feparation, without long and feri ous reflection, and fuch advice, as deferved his confidence. The queftion was finally fubmitted to a very refpectable ecclefiaftical council, of which the late Lieut. Governor PHILLIPS was a very active member. The council unanimoufly voted, that duty and the general intereft of religion required his removal. On the 26th of December, 1792, he was inaugurated, as Hollis Profeffor of Divinity in Harvard College.
In June, 1792, the corporation and overfeers of Harvard Univerfity harmoniously invited doctor Tappan to the office of Profeffor of Divinity. This profefforship was founded by Mr. Hollis, merchant, of London, A. D. 1722. In 1747, an addition was made to the fund for supporting the Hollis Profeffor of Divinity, by a legacy of Daniel Henchman, Efq. of Boston. The election of doctor Tappan evidently accorded with the defign of the generous donors. His character was publickly acknowledged to be fuch, as their ftatutes required. He was a well known friend and advocate of thofe evangelical doc. trines, which conftituted the faith of our excellent forefathers, and have been received, as the truths of God, by reformed churches in general. His learning, his piety, and his aptnefs to teach abundant ly juftified his appointment to that important ftation. To difeufs the motives, which induced him to accept the appointment, is deemed quite unneceffary. It is nothing unufual for a good man of diftinguished talents to rife, in obedience to the call of Providence, to a more elevated fphere of action, than that which he first éccupied. But doctor Tappan's Vol. I. No. 4.
To fay that he was very useful in that office would be only repeating the common obfervation. But an attempt to fhow, in what his usefulness confifted, and by what means it was promoted, may not be wholly uninterefting.
When he was introduced into the Profeffor's office, the religious character of the university was uncommonly diffolute. For fome time the ftudents had received no regular inftruction in theology. Books, containing the poifon of deifm, were eagerly read, and the minds of many were corrupted. The tide of fashionable opinion began to run in the channel of infidelity. Few dared to be serious advocates for the caufe of chriftian truth. The great object of
the pious founders of the college was forgotten. The glory of the gofpel was neglected, or treated with profane ridicule. The fab bath was generally devoted to fcience, to vanity, or to indolence. Immorality and diforder, in various fhapes, had become prevalent, and mocked the power of perfuafion and the arm of authority. Such was the moral and religious state of the university, when doctor Tappan entered on the duties of his office. The great object, which he pursued in his publick and private lectures, was to defend the principles of natural and revealed religion, and to lead the ftudents to the knowledge of their Maker and Redeemer. He uniformly appeared to be deeply concerned for the religious interefts of the univerfity. His whole official conduct was calculated to conciliate affection, to excite ferious regard to religious truth, and to imprefs the importance of religious duty. He had a juft conception of the movements of the juvenile mind. Not expecting youth to overlook their pleasure in their love of improvement, he aimed, in his publick lectures, to unite entertainment with information. He happily combined brevity with fulness, and animation with exactnefs. He was didactick, yet perfuafive; profound, and yet pathetick. It was impoffible for young men of liberal minds to hear his publick lectures with the well adapted and fervent prayers, which introduced and followed them, without a conviction, that religious truth could be vindicated by argument, and that chriftian piety ennobled the foul and yielded the best enjoyments. So fingular was the affemblage of excellent qualities, which appeared in his publick performances at the university, that the niceft crit
icifm could discover nothing inelegant in the style; the most metaphyfical mind could point out nothing unfair or inconclufive in the argument; the warmest piety was fenfible of nothing indevout; and the coldest philofophy could bring no charge of weaknefs or enthusiasm.
. It must not be omitted, that doctor Tappan's evangelical fentiments and puritan morals were directly conducive to his religious influence. How oppofite foever the gofpel of Chrift is to the natural taste of men; it is a truth, confirmed by fcripture and experience, that a ftrict adherence to gospel doctrines and precepts will render a christian teacher the moft refpectable in the view of mankind at large, and give him the greatest moral influence over their minds. The remark has been frequently made by the most enlightened and judicious men in the commonwealth, that, in point of fentiment and manners, doctor Tappan was that, which the intereft of the university required. Now it is well known, that his views of the most important fubjects, fuch as Chrift's character and atonement, God's eternal fcheme and all-directing providence, depravity and regenera. tion, the diftinguishing nature of religion, and future retribution, were conformed to the views, which the founders of the college and the fathers of New England entertained. They were fuch, as are exhibited in the renowned Affembly's Catechifm, which, for the fake of diftinction, has been generally called the orthodox or calviniftick fcheme. Such a theological character in the Profeffor was fitted to produce the best ef fects on the moral and religious ftate of the inftitution. Had the
ftudents, fo generally unfettled in their religious principles, difcovered in him, who was feated in the divinity chair, a laxnefs of fentiment, and a freedom of manners, which did not forbid diffipation; how injurious would have been the effect? It is easy to conceive that fuch a character, inftead of checking, would have increafed exifting evils. It would have ftill more unhinged the religious principles of the ftudents. It would have annihilated in their view the importance of chriftian truth, and confounded the difference between religion and impiety. Had a Profeffor been introduced, bearing the ftamp of modern liberality, it would have alienated from our university the affection of a great part of the clergy and people of New England, and the confidence of our molt refpectable and exemplary churches. Serious, promifing young men, feeking an education with a view to the gospel miniftry, would have frequently, if not generally, preferred fome other college, more favourable to their ultimate object. These, and other evils, fo earnestly deprecated by every friend of the univerfity and the christian cause, were in a good measure prevented by the influence of doctor Tappan. Among the Atudents infidelity was gradually confounded, profanity and diffipation were awed and reftrained, open irreligion was put to fhame, and the science of God was ftudied with more seriousness and delight. In the courfe of a few years the triumphant air of infidelity difappeared, and it became cuftomary in all publick performances, to speak of chriftianity in terms of refpect and veneration. Christian parents, feeling confidence in the Univerfity, commit.
ted their fons to its care with fatisfaction. The religious publick extenfively manifested a growing attachment to that most important literary inftitution, and cherished the pleafing hope, that the youth, educated there, would not only be inftructed in human science, but guarded againft irreligious opinions, and initiated into the true principles of the oracles of God.
The high efteem and ardent love, which he commanded, added much to his falutary influence on the internal ftate of the university. So much of the father appeared in him, and fo remarkably inoffenfive was he in all his intercourfe with the members of college, that a ftigma would have been fixed upon any one, who fhould have reproached him. To reproach him would have been a rude affault upon that facred affection, with which he was cherished and honoured at the university.
It is with regret, that any circumftance is mentioned, which leffened his usefulness. But the reader must not expect to fee in thefe pages the portrait of a man, free from imperfection. For the writer to draw fuch a portrait, even in the prefent cafe, would not be confiftent with integrity. And for any to fuppofe that the caufe of God would be ferved by the fuppreffion of truth would not favour of wisdom.
It was an order of Mr. Hollis, whofe generofity founded the profefforfhip, and who had an unquestionable right to prefcribe its duties, "That the Profeffor fet apart two or three hours one afternoon in the week, to answer fuch questions of the ftudents, who fhall apply to him, as refer to the fyftem or controverfies of religion, or cafes of confcience, or the feeming contradictions in fcripture."
The great utility of fuch a practice would fhow the wifdom of the appointment. It would excite attention in the students, and engage them to affiduity in their inquiries after divine truth. It would form in them habits of free converfation, and of profound, connected reafoning on the most important fubjects. Such an opportunity, modeftly and diligently employed, would introduce them to fome parts of knowledge, to which they can have accefs in no other way, and furnish them with foms qualifications for the miniftry better, than any other mode of inftruction. It would lead them to that candid and thorough investigation of every fubject, which is necessary to the full difcovery of truth, and to the expofure and confufion of errour. In this way the Profeffor would obtain a clear infight into the religious as well, as the intellectual ftate of the students, and thus be under advantages to give them the moft useful inftruction and advice. For what reafon the judicious order of Mr. Hollis, abovementioned, was difregarded during doctor Tappan's profefforfhip, we know
It admits no doubt, that a divine, poffeffing his extenfive acquaintance with theological fubjects, his readiness of conception and utterance, his candid judg. ment and condefcending difpolition, might in that way have contributed exceedingly to the improvement of the ftudents, and ultimately to the edification of our churches.
expected, that young men, who contemplate that profeffion, will readily obtain a due comprehenfion of its facred nature and vast importance. It is not reasonable to expect, that they will fufficiently confider the indefcribable advantage of method in their ftudies, or be able, without affiftance, to adopt the method, which expe. rience has proved to be the best. Through inattention to the nature and importance of the miniftry, and to the proper method of study, many have precipitately entered upon it without the moral, or without the literary and theological qualifications, which are requifite. They who ought to magnify the facred office, frequently fhow by their practice, that they judge it the meanest of all profeffions. A long course of ftudy, and much exactness and readiness are deemed neceffary to the profeffions of law and phyfick. Nay, "every mechanical art requires a courfe of many years, before one can be mafter in it." But the nobleft and most impor tant of all profeffions, that which comes from heaven, and leads thither again, that which is employed in the fublimeft exercises, and is most highly honoured by God, is esteemed fo low a thing in the eyes of many, that they think they can reach it with much lefs previous study and preparation, than are neceffary for the most fordid of all trades. Even they, who have time and inclination for preparatory studies, have often made fuch an injudicious choice of books, have obferved fo little order in their ftudies, have been fo fuperficial in their inquiries, and fo partial in their investigations, that their time has been
A Profeffor of his abilities and popularity had advantages to be, in many respects, peculiarly useful to ftudents in divinity. It belonged to his office to direct their ftudies, and aid their preparation for the miniflry. It is not to be
• See Burnet's Paftoral Care, chap. &