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time he made his visit; and, the tea table being removed, she addressed him as follows: "My long illness has occa. sioned you a number of journies; and I suppose, doctor, you have procured my medicines at considerable expense.” The doctor acknowledged that good drugs were not to be obtained but at a very high price. Upon which she replied, “I am extremely sorry that I have put you to so much labor and expense; and also promise, that on any future indisposition, I will never trouble you again. So, you see that I both repent and reform, and that is all you require.” The doctor, immediately shrugging up his shoulders; exclaimed, “That will not do for me.” “The words of the wise are as goads."
A REMARKABLE DREAM.
About three years before the gospel was first preached in. ......, a certain woman had the following dream; which in the event, appears remarkable. She thought she was walk. ing up the hill above the town, near to a barn, now a meet. ing house, when on a sudden the clouds gathered darkness, and a dreadful storm of thunder and lightning came on. She looked back upon the town, and the tempest seenied still more horrible, for the blackness of darkness seemed to overspread it. Terrified with this dreadful scene, she thought she met an acquaintance, with a small quantity of flax under his arm, spinning as he passed along, to whom she said, calling him by name, “Surely, the day of judgment is come.” He seemed but little concerned, and only said, “My thread is almost spun.” The man was then in health, but died in a short time after. She went on till she came opposite to the door of the barn,
and thought a strange man came out of it, and perceiv. ing her concern, offered her the New Testament, saying, “Take, read, and pray over this, and it will teach you the way of salvation.” Immediately she thought the clouds dispersed, and the darkness disappeared, and all was calm again. This dream made no impression, except upon her memory; and, for some time after, the place was first opened for worship there, she seemed determined never to attend; but, on the contrary, persecuted those who did; till, on a certain day, she was intreated to go once, merely out of curiosity. Soon after she was seated, the minister Tose up in the pulpit, and proved to be the person of whom she dreamed; the remembrance of which, together with the subject of his discourse, touched her to the very heart, and drew floods of tears from her eyes. From this time, the Spirit of God seemed to work powerfully upon her soul, a renovating change took place in all her powers, and, having gone through much persecution, she still ap. pears a striking monument of saving mercy.
Such is the power of Almighty Grace!
THE DIGNITY OF HUMAN NATURE IN THE ARTICLE
OF DEATH It has frequently been observed, that however men may cry up the dignity of human nature, and dispute against the doctrine of sovereign grace, in the hour of health and prosperity, such principles will not do to die with,
A physician, who imbibed Socinian principles, made it his chief concern, in matters of religion; to degrade the characier and diguity of Christ. Such was his contempt of
VOL. I. 4
him, that he seldom spake of bim in conversation under any other name than that of the carpenter's son.
At length, he was seized with an affliction, which terminated in his death. A while before his departure, the servant who at. tended him, on entering his room, found him in great agitation. On inquiring the cause, he answered, “I am a dying man, and that which most of all affects me, is, that I must be judged by the carpenter's son!"
AN AWFUL INSTANCE OF WILFUL APOSTASY.
AMONGST the variety of subjects which engage the study of ministers and which are edifying to private Christians, are those which relate to the privileges of the godly. They are unsearchable in their nature, inexhaustible in their extent, and useful in their application. It is a pleas. ing theme on which believers exercise their thoughts and meditations, with increasing delight and satisfaction; but, how awful the state of those, who, though speculatively acquainted with the nature of spiritual enjoyments, arestran. gers to the experience and power of them upon their hearts, because of their depravity and unbelief! Many persons have a common persuasion on their minds,formed from a knowledge of their own character, that they are ex. cluded from having any share in such blessings; but, how shall we give credit to a narrative, which is designed to in. ducé a belief of extraordinary agency in producing this aw. ful persuasion? In proof of it, receive this testimony:
"As Dr. Doddridge was once discoursing on the dignity of the Christian's calling, and his glorious hopes and pros. pects, he had accidentally a man for his hcarer, who, after
worship, went into the vestry, and addressed him in the following terms: "You have made an excellent and en. couraging discourse, Dr. D. on the privileges of the peo. ple of God; but these privileges do not belong to me, nor shall I ever have the least interest in them.'
“What reason have you for saying so?' replied the doctor; Jesus Christ is able to save unto the uttermost.' 'I will tell
you, sir, my circumstances, and then you will not be surprised at my speaking so decisively on the subject. I once made a credible profession of religion, which was supported with great decorum and regularity for several years. I was very strict and conscientious in the discharge of those va. rious external duties which are connected with the Chris. tiap system. None could charge me with immorality of conduct, or the neglect of positive commands. But, in course of time, my zeal departed from me, and I became careless and remiss in my walk and conversation. I felt no satisfaction of mind arising from the performance of devotional exercises, and gradually declined my customary observance of them. Instead of praying in secret twice or thrice in a day, I only prayed once; the same with respect to family religion; and, at last, these sacred engage. ments were entirely omitted, which soon discovered itself by my outward conduct, which received an impression of my dissipation. Ungodly company, and the gratifications of sense, were then the only sources of enjoyment in which I could indulge, free from those strong convictions of guilt, and dreadful apprehensions of future punishment, which retirement and calm reflection impose on the mind. Soon, after this change took place, I was left guardian to a young lady, whose fortune was committed to my care till she
came of age; but I expended the money, and debauched the girl. Still I was sensible how far preferable a virtuous and good life was to vice and profaneness, and I was care. ful to instruct my children in the principles of religion; and, on the sabbathday would give them portions of scrip. ture to commit to memory. When I returned ope even. ing from the sinful amusements of the day, I asked them, as usual, if they could repcat their lessons: Yes,' says the youngest child, “and I have a lesson for you, too, papa. "Well, what is that, my dear? She opened the Bible, and read to me that awful passage in Ezekiel, xxiv. 13. 'In thy filthiness is lewdness; because I have purged thee, and thou wast not purged, thou shalt not be purged from thy filthiness any more, till I have caused my fury to
thee.' This I received as the seal of my irrevo. cable doom, and I now know there remaineth no more sac. rifice for sins; but a certain fearful looking for of judg. ment, and fiery indignation which shall devour the adver. saries."
We may perceive, from this affecting anecdote, how much a man may do in religion, and yet at length come short of the kingdom of heaven; it is not prayer; it is not hearing sermons; it is not a form of godliness, however consistent it
may be with the written word, or how exact soever men may be in their support of it, that will interest them in the Divine favor. All this may subsist without that internal change of heart and universal holiness of life, which consists in, and establishes a conformity to the image
of God. Many run well for a time, who afterwards fall to rise no more. Then guard well thine heart. Stifle the first inclinations to apostasy, which begin with the nego