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loss to Richard Hooker that whilst at College this excellent friend and patron died, but the patronage did not end with his life, for having once spoken to Edwin Sandys (then Bishop of London, and after Archbishop of York) of the learning and manners, and exemplary life of Hooker, the Bishop resolved that his son Edwin should be sent to Corpus Christi College, and by all means be his pupil; for the Bishop said, 'I will have a tutor for my son that shall teach him learning by instruction, and virtue by example, and my greatest care shall be of the last, and (God willing) this Richard Hooker shall be the man into whose care I will commit my Edwin.' In the nineteenth year of his age he was chosen to be one of the twenty scholars of the foundation, and became daily more assiduous in his studies, still enriching his quiet and capacious soul with various kinds of human learning; and as he was diligent in these, so he seemed restless in searching the intention of God's spirit revealed to mankind in the sacred Scriptures, for the understanding of which he seemed to be assisted by the same spirit by which they were written; and the good man would often say, 'The Scripture was not writ to beget pride, and disputations, and opposition to government, but moderation, and charity, and humility, and obedience, and peace, and piety in mankind, of which no good man did ever repent himself upon his death-bed.' In about three years from the time of his being elected a scholar of Corpus Christi College, he entered into sacred orders, and not long after he married; and by this means was drawn from the tranquillity of his College, from that garden of piety, of pleasure, of peace, and a sweet conversation, into those corroding cares that attend a married priest and a country parsonage for his means were but small, and the only advantage he derived from his marriage was the exercise of his patience, which was but too much put to the proof by his termagant wife. His answer to a friend, who lamented the severity of his lot and the violence of her temper, should not be forgotten :-' My dear George, if saints have usually a double share in the miseries of this life, I that am none ought not to repine at what my wise Creator hath appointed for me, but labour as I do indeed daily to submit to his will and possess my soul in patience and peace.' In 1585 he was made Master of the Temple, but the religious animosities and disputes of the times did not permit him to enjoy this preferment; he found not in it that blessed tranquillity which he always prayed and laboured for. 'I am weary,' he said to the Archbishop, of the noise and oppositions of this place, and indeed God and Nature did not intend me for contentions, but for study and quietness. I have begun to write a book which hath for its object the peace of the Church. To this end I have searched many books and spent many thoughtful hours, and I hope not in vain. But, my Lord, I shall never be able to finish what I have begun unless I be removed into some quiet country parsonage, where I may see God's blessing spring out of my mother earth, and eat mine own bread in peace and privacy.' Sa
he was removed to the rectory of Boscum, near Salisbury, where he wrote the first four Books of his Ecclesiastical Polity,' of which it was said that they should last till the last fire shall consume all learning. In the year 1595, he left Boscum, and was made rector of Bishop's-Borne, in Kent, where the innocency and sanctity of his life became so remarkable, that many turned out of the road, and others (scholars especially) went purposely to see the man whose life and learning were so much admired; but we pass over many particulars of his exemplary life that we may give a more full and detailed account of the last scene of it. In the year 1600, and of his age forty-six, he fell into a long and sharp sickness, from the malignity of which he never recovered; for till his death he was not free from thoughtful days and restless nights: but a submission to His will that makes the sick man's bed easy, made his very languishment comfortable, and it is certain that the nearer he was to his death, the more he grew in humility, in holy thoughts and resolutions. About one day before his death he had a retired and private conversation with Dr. Saravia, his friend, after which the Doctor administered to him and some other friends the blessed sacrament of the Body and Blood of our Lord Jesus. On the following day he was better in appearance, deep in contemplation, and not inclinable to discourse; but on Dr. Saravia's enquiring his present thoughts, he replied that he was meditating the number and nature of angels and their blessed obedience and order, without which peace could not be in heaven; and oh! that it might be so on earth!' After which he said, 'I have lived to see this world is made up of perturbations, and I have been long preparing to leave it, and gathering comfort for the dreadful hour of making my account with God, which I now apprehend to be near; and though I have by his grace loved him in my youth, and feared him in mine age, and laboured to have a conscience void of offence to him and to all men, yet if thou O Lord be extreme to mark what I have done amiss who may abide it? And therefore where I have failed, Lord, shew mercy to me; for I plead not my righteousness, but the forgiveness of my unrighteousness for his merits who died to purchase a pardon for penitent sinners; and since I owe thee, a death, Lord, let it not be terrible, and then take thine own time. I submit to it. Let not mine, but thy will, O Lord, be done.' He then fell into a dangerous slumber, from which he recovered only to say these words;- Good Doctor, God hath heard my daily petitions, for I am at peace with all men, and he is at peace with me; from which blessed assurance I feel that inward joy, which this world can neither give nor take from me.' More he would have spoken but his spirits failed him, and after a short conflict betwixt nature and death, a quiet sigh put a period to his last breath, and so he fell asleep.
Such was Richard Hooker, one of the brighest ornaments of the Church of England. In him, if in any man, were united the qualities of the serpent and the dove; for as he was harmless in his intercourse with men, so was he wise also in his knowledge of, and
communion with God. Few of us can hope to rival him in his learning; but all may strive to imitate his virtues; and happily we live under a law which values goodness more than greatness, and believe in a God whose glory is not so much honoured by the learning as by the piety of his worshippers.
ON SERIOUSNESS IN RELIGION,
(From Archdeacon Paley.)
THE first requisite in Religion is seriousness. No impression can be made without it. An orderly life, so far as others are able to observe us, is now and then produced by prudential motives, or by dint of habit; but without seriousness there can be no religious principle at the bottom, no course of conduct flowing from religious motives; in a word, there can be no Religion. This cannot exist without seriousness upon the subject. Perhaps a teacher of Religion has more difficulty in producing seriousness amongst his hearers, than in any other part of his office. Until he succeed in this, he loses his labour and when once, from any cause whatever, a spirit of levity has taken hold of a mind, it is next to impossible to plant serious considerations in that mind. It is seldom to be done, except by some great shock or alarm, sufficient to make a radical change in the disposition; and which is God's own way of bringing about the business.
One might have expected that events so awful and tremendous as death and judgment, that a question so deeply interesting as whether we shall go to heaven or to hell, could in no possible case, and in no constitution of mind whatever, fail of exciting the most serious apprehension and concern. But this is not so. In a thoughtless, a careless, a sensual world, many are always found who can resist, and who do resist, the force and importance of all these reflections; that is to say, they suffer nothing of the kind to enter into their thoughts, There are grown men and women, nay, even middle-aged persons, who have not thought seriously about Religion an hour, nor a quarter of an hour in the whole course of their lives. This great object of human solicitude affects not them in any manner whatever.
Again; there is a race of giddy thoughtless men and women, of young men and young women more especially, who look no further than the next day, the next week, the next month; seldom or ever so far as the next year. Present pleasure is every thing with them. The sports of the day, the amusements of the evening, entertainments, and diversions, occupy all their concern; and so long as these can be supplied in succession, so long as they can go from one diversion to another, their minds remain in a state of perfect indifference to every thing except their pleasures. Now what chance has Religion with such dispositions as these?
Again; the general course of education is much against religious seriousness, even without those who conduct education foreseeing or intending any such effect. Many of us are brought up with this world set before us, and nothing else. Whatever promotes this world's prosperity is praised; whatever hurts and obstructs and prejudices this world's prosperity is blamed :—and there all praise and censure end.
Again; it is the nature of worldly business of all kinds, especially of much hurry or over-employment, or over-anxiety in business, to shut out and keep out Religion from the mind. The question is, whether the state of mind which this cause produces ought to be called a want of seriousness in Religion. It becomes coldness and indifference towards Religion; but is it properly a want of seriousness upon the subject? I think it is; and in this way. We are never serious upon any matter which we regard as trifling. This is impossible. And we are led to regard a thing as trifling, which engages no portion of our habitual thoughts, in comparison with what other things do.
But there is another adversary to oppose much more formidable; and that is sensuality; an addiction to sensual pleasures. It is the flesh which lusteth against the spirit; that is the war which is waged within us. So it is, no matter what may be the cause, that sensual indulgences, over and above their proper criminality, as sins, as offences against God's commands, have a specific effect upon the heart of man in destroying the religious principle within him; or still more surely in preventing the formation of that principle. It either induces an open profaneness of conversation and behaviour, which scorns and contemns Religion; a kind of profligacy, which rejects and sets at nought the whole thing; or it brings upon the heart an averseness to the subject, a fixed dislike and reluctance to enter upon its concerns in any way whatever.
We measure the importance of things, not by what, or according to what they are in truth, but by and according to the space and room which they occupy in our minds. Now our business, our trade, our schemes, our pursuits, our gains, our losses, our fortunes, possessing so much of our minds, whether we regard the hours we expend in meditating upon them, or the earnestness with which we think about them; and Religion possessing so little share of our thought either in time or earnestness; the consequence is, that worldly interest comes to be the serious thing with us, Religion comparatively the trifle. Men of business are naturally serious; but all their seriousness is absorbed by their business. In Religion they are no more serious than the most giddy characters are; than those characters are, which betray a levity in all things.
Again; the want of due seriousness in Religion is almost sure to be the consequence of the absence or disuse of religious ordinances and exercises. I use two terms; absence and disuse. Some have never attended upon any religious ordinance, or practised any reli
gious exercises, since the time they were born; some a very few times in their lives. With these it is the absence of religious ordinances and exercises. There are others (and many we fear of this description) who, whilst under the guidance of their parents, have frequented religious ordinances, and been trained up to religious exercises; but who, when they came into more public life, and to be their own masters, and to mix in the pleasures of the world, or engage themselves in its business and pursuits, have forsaken these duties in whole or in a great degree. With these it is the disuse of religious ordinances and exercises. But I must also explain what I mean by religious ordinances and exercises. By religious ordinances I mean the being instructed in our Catechism in our youth; attending upon public worship at church; the keeping holy the Lord's day regularly and most particularly, together with a few other days in the year, by which some very principal events and passages of the Christian history are commemorated; and at its proper season the more solemn office of receiving the Lord's Supper.
Together with religious ordinances we mentioned religious exercises. By the term religious exercises, I in particular mean private prayer; whether it be at set times, as in the morning and evening of each day; or whether it be called forth by occasions, as when we are to form some momentous decision, or enter upon some great undertaking; or when we are under some pressing difficulty or deep distress, some excruciating bodily pain, or heavy affliction; or, on the other hand, and no less properly, when we have lately been receiving some signal benefit, experiencing some signal mercy; such as preservation from danger, relief from difficulty or distress, abatement of pain, recovery from sickness; for by prayer, let it be observed, we mean devotion in general; and thanksgiving is devotion as much as prayer itself. I mean private prayer, as here described; and I also mean, what is perhaps the most natural form of private prayer, short ejaculatory extemporaneous addresses to God, as often as either the reflections which rise up in our minds, let them come from what quarter they may, or the objects and incidents which seize our attention, prompt us to utter them; which, in a religiously disposed mind, will be the case, I may say, every hour; and which ejaculation may be offered up to God in any posture, in any place, or in any situation. Amongst religious exercises I also reckon family prayer, which unites many of the uses both of public worship and private prayer. The reading of religious books is likewise to be accounted a religious exercise. Religious meditation still more so; and more so for this reason, that it implies and includes that most important duty, self-examination; for I hold it to be next to impossible for a man to meditate upon Religion, without meditating at the same time upon his own present condition with respect to the tremendous alternative which is to take place upon him after his death.
These are what we understand by religious exercises; and they