Imágenes de páginas
PDF
EPUB

tion is but of little usc. These persons, however, should consider, that these offenders are from amongst those who have not been rightly educated; and therefore only shew the need of continued and increased exertions in the good cause of the Christian education of the young.

V. A young woman, a performer in one of the play booths, at Bartholomew fair was burned to death by her clothes catching fire from a candle.

A keeper of wild beasts was mangled by an infuriated tyger.- London Paper.

The Magistrates have succeeded in putting down' a very large proportion of the fairs in the neighbourhood of London. This has given great satisfaction to the well-disposed and peaceable inhabitants of those places, and prevented a great deal of disturbance, and wickedness, and misery. This proceeding will, of course, be objected to by those who delight in scenes of vice and profligacy, and by some of those, too, whose gain may depend on the continuance of them; and the Magistrates will be represented as the enemies of the amusements and pleasures of the poor. Those, persons, however, who have consideration enough to think of the consequences of things, will see that the real friends of the poor are those who would teach them what is good; and that the way to make people happy is to lead them to what is right; and that the careless, thoughtless, loose and profligate babits, which some people think it right to allow of, and to encourage, are, under the deceitful name of pleasure, just the very causes of the misery and wretchedness with which we are grieved to see the poor so often labouring.

Many of our cottage readers see this, and understand it, as well as we do, and they seek their happiness in a different : course and they find it too. And these are the sober, bonest, thriving, pious cottagers, of which we know a great number, who are much too wise to listen to those whose advice would be the very way to their ruin.

V. A child of Mr. Denton, in Chalton-street, Somers-town, died on Friday evening, in consequence of drinking boiling water from a tea-kettle, while its mother was putting away the tea things.-Times.

We remember the same accident happening to a child from drinking hot water out of a tea-pot.

TO CORRESPONDENTS. A Constant Reader ; John C., the Groom; A Packet from Stockport ; R. B.; W. Dy; and Elizabeth ; have been received.

THE

Cottager's Monthly Visitor.

DECEMBER, 1823.

ON THE SACRAMENTS. In the letter of John Steady to his son, in our last Number, it is observed* that “the Papistst say that there are seven sacraments, and that we Protestants only allow of two.

Now the word Sacrament, means an outward vi. sible sign of an inward and spiritual grace.” In Baptism, the outward visible sign is Water; and this is a sign of that inward purity which is the gift of the Holy Ghost. In the Lord's Supper, the outward sign is Bread and Wine; and these are the signs of the body and blood of Christ, on whose sacrifice the Christian relies for his salvation. Now we cannot find these two parts, the outward visible sign, and the inward and spiritual grace, in any other of those observances which the Papists looked upon as Sacraments. We do not indeed doubt the importance of some of these rites, but we do not allow them to be Sacraments. The other five, which were called Sacraments in the Romish Church, are Confirmation, Penance, Orders, Matrimony, and Extreme Unction, on which we have not room now to discourse, but which are, some of them, allowed and commanded in Scripture, but yet have not the nature of Sacraments; and some of them are grown out of things commanded by the Apostles, but,

+ Roman Catholics.

Page 520.
NO. 36.-VOL. II).

A a

since, so much corrupted, as to have lost their first use and meaning.

Our two Sacraments, then, are Baptism, and the Supper of the Lord. In these Sacramental Services, our Heavenly Fatber pledges Himself to bestow on us the great privileges of the Gospel, and we solemnly pledge ourselves to walk by its rules. And, by looking at these two Sacraments, we are constantly reminded of our calling, and constantly taught that in this world we have a spiritual warfare to encounter, and that the faithful Christian has a Power above who will lead him to victory. A Christian then must always remember that his enemies are Sin, the World, and the Devil.

In our first admission into the church, by Baptism, we are taught that we have need of an influence, to work within us," which, by nature, we cannot bave." We are to be baptized with water, and the Holy Ghost; we therefore use the water as the appointed outward sign of purification, and we pray that God would “wash and sanctify, with the Holy Ghost,” all those who are baptized, that they “ may be born again, and be made beirs of everlasting salvation.” Lest a Christian sbould forget his calling, he is marked, on his first admission in the church of Christ, as one who is to contend against the lasts of the flesh, the evil desires of bis nature; he is “signed with the sign of the cross, in token that he shall not be ashamed to acknowledge the faith of Christ crucified, and manfully to fight under his banner against Sin, the World, and the Devil.” Would that every parent, and every Godfather and Godmother, who brought a child to the baptismal font, would consider how solemnly they have dedicated that child to the Lord ; that they would think of the sacred pledge which they have given, and would remember that it is their parts and duties to see that the infant be taught by what a solemn vow, promise, and profession," he is bound; that a Christian's “ profession is

9

to follow the example of Christ, and to be made like unto Him;" that he is to““ die to sin, and rise again unto righteousness;" that he is continually to mortify all evil and corrupt affections, and daily to proceed in all virtue, and Godliness of living."

But the Christian, who is enrolled, by Baptism, among the soldiers of Christ, must remember that his warfare' against his spiritual enemies will continue during the whole course of his life. And, to support him in this contest, our Blessed Saviour has appointed another Sacrament for “ the strengthening and refreshing of his soul."

Who that knew his own weakness would refuse to seek for that strength which alone can enable him to conquer? Who that knew the helps which are promised to those who worthily partake of the symbols of Christ's body and blood, would spurn such gracious offers, and lose such mighty blessings?

In partaking of this Sacrament, we see the very disposition which a Christian ought to have, and the very help which he stands in need of. He is taught to feel the danger of yielding to sin, and he is seeking for spiritual strength to enable him to strive agaiust it. In receiving this Sacrament aright, we acknowledge that we are looking to the atonement made by Christ for our past sins, and we earnestly plead for his Spirit to enable us to turn from our evil ways, and to give ourselves to God. We are “so to eat the flesh of Christ and to drink his blood, that our sinful bodies may be made clean by His body, and our souls washed in his most precious blood." This Sacrament affords to the Christian a migbty aid in that great contest, in which he is striving to subdue his evil inclinations, and he looks, in andoubting faith, for the promised help. And who that is in earnest in his Christian warfare does not find that, in partaking of this ordinance, he is greatly helped? Who does not find, that, in-his conflict with 'sin, he has a powerful arm uplifted on his side? May we all see the blessings to be sought in this Spiritual Feast, and may we, by the Divine Mercy, be made partakers of them all! May we never bide from ourselves the great work which we have to perform, lest we should grow indifferent to the great helps which we require! May we look to the blood-shedding of Christ as our only hope of pardon, and may “we and the whole Church of Christ obtain remission of our sins, and all other benefits of bis passion!" May all of us be “ fulfilled with his grace, and heavenly benediction !" And though we be unworthy to offer unto Him any sacri. fice, let us beseech Him to accept this, our bounden duty and service, not weighing our merits but pardoning our offences through Jesus Christ our Lord."

V.

SINGING IN CHURCHES. SINGING did not make a necessary part of our church service as it was settled at the time of the Reformation. But still praise is an important part of public worship as well as prayer; and therefore those parts of Scripture which might be considered as songs of praise were inserted in our prayerbooks; these are called the Psalms of David, being chiefly (though not wholly) composed by him. They contain songs of joy, praising God for his mercies both public and private; sometimes they pour forth the mournful strains of sorrow for individual sins and sufferings, and sometimes for national offences and afflictions. In their prophetic character, too, they contain constant references to that kingdom which was afterwards to be founded upon earth by Christ, the descendant of David ; and they teach us to lift up our hearts to Him who sitteth upon an eternal throne, and will hereafter take, to reign with Him for ever, those wbo are the faithful subjects of his

« AnteriorContinuar »