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of a few breakages will be your least, and possibly your last on that score. In giving you remedies for this mania, I am describing a very possible case, and one of frequent occurrence. On no account gratify this propensity, but seek to divert it. Do this as you would be unwilling that your son should present that pitiable object a lad who knows a little and can do a little in all the -ologies, and knows nothing of them worth knowing; who has learned to talk and to be conceited; who, while his attention has been directed to a variety of subjects, is really master of none; and in that particular branch from which his future maintenance is to be derived, is even inferior to many of his schoolfellows or companions. Yet the deluded parent all the while thinks her son amazingly clever, because he has an apparatus, &c. and knows a few barbarous words for some plants, minerals, &c. I hope, however, in a future Letter to expose upon proper grounds and very much at large the preposterous delusion of aiming at what is called general knowledge, and to which, alas! the system of many an unprincipled schoolmaster designedly contributes. The extent to which I would allow your son to be acquainted with these topics, does not endanger this perilous and preposterous deception.
I am, dear Madam, yours, &c.
THOUGHTS ON THE SACRED HISTORY OF THE CREATION. (Concluded from p. 180.)
THE bones, muscles, blood, arteries, &c. of the human frame, are nearly similar to those of most quadrupeds; yet if closely compared, the human body is found to have some peculiarities, which, exclusive of the soul, attach to man a decided and permanent superiority, which no order of animals can acquire. Of these it will be sufficient to particularize four differences.
The first is, the erect structure. All other animals are so framed as not to possess this beauty and advantage: they are made to be always prone; and though the ape and baboon class have more power of supporting an erect posture, yet they cannot do it with the facility, energy, and natural ability of man; nor do they appear to derive any benefit from it over their fellow-brutes. But in the human race, this erect structure is the foundation of their dominion and superiority over all the rest of the animal world.
The second peculiarity is the bony and muscular structure of the human legs and feet, which give us a solidity of support, and an agility and facility of movement, that no other animal possesses in equal applicability and effective power. By his legs and feet, man is fitted for every kind of motion, except that of flying; and though some quadrupeds excel him in temporary speed, none can vie with him in his power of continuing it. A man cannot outrun a horse, but in a protracted journey will frequently walk him down.
The third and distinguishing superiority is the human arm, with its hand and fingers. This is indeed the sceptre of his power: it has the potency of an enchanter's rod; and has achieved those wonders of human art, strength, and ingenuity, which the magicians of our imagination might toil in vain to surpass. All that we admire and dread and use, in mechanism and manufacture, in art, war, luxury, labour, and comfort, is the produce of the human hand. These three advantages give all the bodily efficiency which man's transcending soul requires without that informing spirit, little comparative benefit would be attained from them; as that without these would be also ineffective; but both united, man is the irresistible sovereign of the globe he inhabits.
The fourth great dissimilarity, is the beautiful and delicate skin of the human body. Hasty men have inveighed against Providence, for sending us into the world so destitute of natural clothing, so exposed to all injuries of temperature and wet. Would any such querulous declaimers exchange their admirable skin for the hide of a beast, the scales of a crocodile, or the feathers of a turkey? But independent of all beauty, the connection between our mind and our delicate skin is unceasing a fine nervous expansion, proceeding from the brain, is purposely spread over the outside of our bodies, immediately under the last cuticle. That our intellect may have the benefit of this sensitiveness, it is materially associated with our feelings and sympathies. With the hide of a rhinoceros, or the wool of a sheep, we should not possess the feelings of a human heart, or the intellectual sensibility of a cultivated mind.
But one of the most beautiful and inost benevolent ideas of the Divine mind was the conception and formation of the female sex. No other production has contributed so much to the improvement and happiness of human nature: it was the divinest of our great Author's works on our earth. When He declared, as the reason of this particular creation, "It is not good that man should be alone," He pronounced a truth which every age and clime and nation have verified. If man had been alone upon earth, his populations had been little else than fierce, savage, and battling brutes. In this state the uncivilized tribes of the earth are found to be, where women are degraded or despised; that is, where they are deprived of that influence which they were created to diffuse and possess, and by its magic enchantment to humanize and meliorate. Respect and love to their wives and females, is the great civilizing principle which has contributed to the unceasing progress of the nations who conquered Europe from the Romans, and spread over it the present kingdoms, with a superiority that has never retrograded. There is something in the active spirit of the manly portion of our species, which loves enterprize, exertion, competition, and personal display, and would too often lead us into civil discord and strife, if no softer companions were about us, to occupy some portion of our thoughts and attentions, and to create and cherish milder and sweeter feelings. The female sex were indeed created to be such a blessing to ours, that they have in all ages operated to make us better, wiser, and happier, in proportion as their gentler nature has had the influence it was made to possess.
The Deity having formed h's human being, and stationed him in a pleasant region of the earth, began his intellectual education by causing the various classes of the animal kingdom to approach him, that he might observe their qualities, and from thence attach to them the verbal sounds or names by which he would afterwards know them. Language thus began with the names of living things: the first words were the notations of existing beings, the true foundation of all human speech.
We now approach the great mystery of our creation, the fall and sin of man- the commencement of moral evil and of personal suffering; the defection of inan from his Creator; the preference of self-indulgence to self-restraint; the devotion of the spirit to its present enjoyments, and a disregard of future consequences. Whatever opinion we may form as to the original cause of these errors, the fact of their occurrence, prevalence, and continuance, is indisputable: they appear in every page of human history, in the characters and conduct of all ages and nations, in our own individual hearts and lives. Such a being man has been ever since his primeval day; yet in such a perversity as this he could not have been created: to be such a mutilation of the
Divine likeness, is a counteraction to His purposes, and the present triumph of that which is most hostile to Him. The separation from a condition of unmingled happiness into the common world, where trouble and sorrow, as at this day, accompanied moral delinquency, these were the unhappy effects of the primitive departure from reason and obedience; and the depravation became so universal, that the Sovereign Lord thought it fittest for the welfare of all succeeding ages, that the corrupt population should be suddenly cut off. A deluge was the appointed visitation to accomplish this: but from this catastrophe one family was excepted, and in the ark of safety found shelter, with such of the animal world as were intended to replace the species that should perish and when these provisions for repeopling the earth were completed, the tremendous revolution occurred. The fountains of the great deep were broken up, and the floodgates of the heavens were opened. We can but faintly conceive the appalling scene. Mankind were surprised, in the midst of their usual festivities and employments, by the sudden alarm of portentous danger. The sun was seen no more! midnight darkness usurped the day! lightnings dreadfully illuminated! thunder rolled with increasing fury! all that was natural ceased, and in its stead, whirlwind and desolation! Earth rending!-cities falling!-the roar of tumultuous waters! — shrieks and groans of human despair! overwhelming ruin!-universal silence! and the awful quiet of executed and subsiding retribution!
MY SCRAP BOOK. LEAF VIII.
"The Bee that wanders, and sips from every flower, disposes what she has gathered into her cells."- SENECA.
REMARKABLE ANECDOTE OF THE REV. JOHN ROGERS.
Sir Richard Cradock, a justice of peace, was a violent persecutor of the Dissenters, and exerted himself to enforce all the severe laws then in being against them *. He happened to live near Mr. Rogers, against whom he bore a particular enmity, and wanted above all things to have him in his power. Hearing that he was one day to preach some miles off, he thought a fair opportunity offered for accomplishing his base design, and accordingly hired two spies to go and take down the names of all the hearers whom they knew, that they might appear against both them and Mr. Rogers. The plan succeeded to his wishes. They brought him the names of several persons who were present at the meeting, and he summoned them with Mr. Rogers to appear before him. Knowing the violence of the man, they came with trembling hearts. While they were waiting in the great hall, a little girl about six or seven years of age, who was Sir Richard's grand-daughter, happened to come into the hall. She looked at Mr. Rogers, and was much taken with his venerable appearance. He being naturally fond of children, took her upon his knee and caressed her, which occasioned her to conceive a great fondness for him. At length Sir Richard sent a servant to Mr. Rogers and the rest, to inform them, that as one of the witnesses was taken ill, and unable to attend, they must come again another day. They accordingly came at the time appointed, and being convicted, the justice ordered the mittimus to be written to send them to prison. Mr. Rogers expecting to see the little girl again, brought some sweetmeats with him to give her. As soon as she saw him, she came running to him, and appeared fonder of him than before. This child being a particular favourite of In the time of King Charles the Second.
her grandfather, had got such an ascendancy over hin, that he could deny her nothing; and her spirit was so violent, that she could bear no contradiction; so that she was indulged in every thing she wanted. On one occasion, being contradicted, she ran a pen-knife into her arm, to the great danger of her life. In the present instance, this bad spirit was over-ruled for good. While she was sitting on Mr. Rogers's knee, eating the sweetmeats, she looked earnestly at him, and said, "What are you here for, Sir?" He answered, "I believe your grandfather is going to send me and my friends to jail." To jail!" said she, "Why, what have you done?" Why I did nothing but preach at such a place, and they did nothing but hear me.” "But my grandpapa sha'nt send you to jail.” “Aye, but, my dear, I believe he is now making out our mittimus to send us all there." Upon this she ran up to the room where Sir Richard was, and knocked with her head and heels till she got in, and then said to him, "What are you going to do with my good old gentleman in the hall?” That is nothing to you," said he, 'go about your business." "But I won't," said she: "He tells me that you are going to send him and his friends to jail, and if you do, I'll drown myself in the pond as soon as they are gone; I will indeed." When he saw the child thus peremptory, it shook his resolution, and he was induced to abandon his malicious design. Taking the mittimus in his hand, he went down into the hall, and thus addressed these good men. "I had here made out your mittimus to send you all to jail, as you deserve; but at my grandchild's request, I drop the prosecution, and set you all at liberty." They all bowed, and thanked his worship. But Mr. Rogers going to the child, laid his hand upon her head, and lifting up his eyes to heaven, with great solemnity said, "God bless you, my dear child! May the blessing of that God whose cause you did now plead, though as yet you know Him not, be upon you in life, at death, and to all eternity!” He and his friends then went away.
The above remarkable story was told by the Rev. Timothy Rogers, the son of the ejected minister, who had frequently heard his father relate it with great pleasure; and the celebrated Mr. Thomas Bradbury once heard it from him when he was dining at the house of Mrs. Tooly, an eminent Christian lady in London, who was distinguished for her religion, and her love to Christ and his people; and whose house and table, like Lydia's, were always open to them. What follows, is yet more remarkable, as affording a striking proof of the answer which was returned to good Mr. Rogers's prayers for this child, and the blessing which descended upon her who had been the instrument of such a deliverance for these persecuted servants of God.
(To be continued.)
Holy prayer is a shelter to the soul, a sacrifice to God, and a scourge to the devil.—Augustine.
Luther is said to have spent three hours every day in prayer. He used to say that prayer was the best book in his study.
Oh! it is more bitter than death to be spoiled of prayer. Daniel chose rather to run the hazard of his life, than lose his prayer.—Chrysostom.
Though Daniel's prayer did not keep him out of the lion's den, it preserved him in the lion's den. - Waite. S. J. B*****.
THE WAY TO WEALTH. Wealth would be wealthier still, and aye to gold aspires: Wealth, would'st thou wealthier be?-diminish thy desires.
Explore the wound the spear hath made,
The print by nails impress'd:
No longer for the living grieve;
And be not faithless, but believe."
Oh! if the iris of the skies
Transcends the painter's art, How could he trace to human eyes
The rainbow of the heart;
When joy, love, fear, repentance, shame,
Each claiming there a part;
RELIGION PROMOTED BY RAILWAYS.
"The earth shall be full of the knowledge of the LORD, as the waters cover the sea." To accomplish this glorious prediction, without miracles, all the improvements of the arts and sciences will be required. Steam Presses and Rail Roads are wonderful facilities in America, and they are among the means to subserve the cause of the Redeemer, we trust, all over the world. We cannot but rejoice in the passing of the bill for the Birmingham Railway. The traffic between Birmingham and London will be understood by the following estimate for one year, by the present road and canal conveyance. Passengers, 233,155; goods, 62,389 tons; parcels, 46,799; beasts, 50,839; sheep, 365,000; pigs, 15,634. The expense by the existing means of transit is about 1,338,2177.; while by the railway it will not exceed 800,7281.; thus exhibiting an annual saving to the country of 537,4897. independently of the advantages to be expected from the unrivalled celerity of this mode of conveyance.
BENEVOLENCE PECULIARLY CHRISTIAN. THE legal ordinances of the Romans were founded on the principle of retaliatory justice. Vengeance there followed the commission of crime, and summary punishment was thought to be the most efficacious preventive of offence. Consistently with such a doctrine, the exercise of mercy formed no prerogative of their governors, but the strict letter of the law guided their decisions. In no case is the superiority of Christianity more manifest than in the inculcation of those sublime doctrines of benevolence and charity, which so strongly tend to mollify the human heart, and to check the progress of that depravity, which, being so much in unison with the perverted inclinations of man, would for ever hold the world in subservience.
Approximating so closely to the purity of heaven, the general adoption of such doctrines would unite the innumerable families of this lower world in celestial harmony and concord, the sabre would be turned into the pruning hook, and the plough be a substitute for the sword. Every territory, from the undiscovered pole to the torrid east, would become the abode of happiness unalloyed, and iniquity and misery no more desolate the world with their frightful ravages.
A RESOLUTION WORTHY OF EVERY
JONATHAN EDWARDS, an American divine of the last century, has left a reputation in the church of God, both as a theologian and a man of Christian virtue, which will engage the admiration of the wise and good down to the end of time. His elevated piety and high attainments resulted from the practical adoption of the following worthy resolution:
"That on the supposition there never was to be but one individual in the world at any one time, who was properly a complete Christian, in all respects of a right stamp, having Christianity always shining in its true lustre, and appearing excellent and lovely from whatever part and under whatever character viewed, he would strive to be that one who should live in his time."
The Scripture Teacher's Assistant: Fifty-two Subjects from the Gospel History of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, with Examples of Teaching, Explanations, and Lessons. The whole arranged as a Yearly Course of Religious Instruction for Sunday Schools, Bible Classes, and Families. By Henry Althans.
British Ecclesiastical History, particularly adapted for Sunday School Teachers, Families, and Young Persons. By Thomas Timpson, author of " A Companion to the Bible," "Church History through all Ages," &c. &c.
ANNIVERSARY OF THE BAPTIST MISSIONARY
WEDNESDAY, June 19.-Sermons: Morning, Poultry Chapel, at Eleven, Rev. J. A. James, of Birmingham; Evening, Surrey Chapel, at Half-past Six, Rev. J. Smith, of Ilford.
THURSDAY.-- Annual Meeting, Spa Fields Chapel, Morning, at Eleven.
London: Printed and Published by C. WOOD AND SON, Poppin's Court, Fleet Street; to whom all Communications for the Editor (post paid) should be addressed; and sold by all Booksellers and Newsmen in the United Kingdom.
Hawkers and Dealers supplied on Wholesale Terms, in London, by STEILL, Paternoster Row; BERGER, Holywell Street, Strand; F. BAIsläë, 124, Oxford Street; and W. N. BAKER, 16, City Road, Finsbury.
INCARNATIONS OF THE HINDOO DEITY
SOLOMON, by divine inspiration, declared, "Lo, this only have I found, that God hath made man upright; but they have sought out many inventions." Eccles. vii, 29.
Probably nothing affords a more affecting proof of the apostasy of man from God, than the various absurdities of paganism in their "inventions" relating to religion. And, at the same time, scarcely any thing furnishes a more interesting confirmation of the truth and divinity of Christianity, than is found in their traditions. The great fundamental doctrine of Christianity is, that the Son of God, the Second Person of the adorable Trinity, descended from heaven, and became incarnate, as the universal prophet and priest of mankind, the Mediator between God and man, and the spiritual king of his holy church.
This glorious doctrine of salvation, which is the substance of Divine revelation, is evident in many of the absurd traditions of the heathen in all the ancient nations.
Hindooism teaches that the Deity has made ten dearents on earth, which they call "Avatárs," a SanVOL. II.
scrit word, signifying incarnation. BRAHM or Brahma, the "Great One," the learned Hindoos regard as the Creator; VISHNOO, the Preserver; and SIVA, the Destroyer. VISHNOO, they say, has been incarnate nine times. In the first he is represented as issuing from the body of a fish; to teach, as it is said, his preservation of a devout person with his family consisting of seven others, and pairs of animals, in an ark, during a deluge, which destroyed the impious population. In the second he appears supported on a tortoise, to remind the people, that in the shape of a tortoise Vishnoo supported the earth, while the gods churned the sea, to make it east up the things which it had swallowed. In the third, he appears with a boar's head, as is said to teach, that in such shape the god drew up the earth with his tusks from the depth of the ocean. Fabulous and absurd as these representations may appear, it seems evident that they have reference to the history of Noah and the Deluge mentioned in the Scriptures; and their extravagance may be accounted for by the consideration, that before the invention of writing, ancient traditions were represented by pictures, which in an ignorant and superstitious age would be corrupted, and that their interpretations would naturally be most ridiculous. Six other incarnations are said to have
taken place, equally childish in their representation, and they are believed to allude to some momentous events in the history of the world in subsequent
KRISHNA is the eighth, and BUDDHA the ninth incarnation. Concerning Krishna, the Hindoo priests, in a long history of his life, relate the greatest extravagancies and follies. Sir William Jones supposes that many of the stories of Krishna, which are similar to the events in the life of our blessed Saviour, must have been borrowed from the spurious Gospels, which were carried to India by some of the early professors of Christianity. Many false accounts of our Saviour, it is well known, were published concerning His mysterious incarnation and wondrous mission, and circulated throughout the East. The representation in our engraving was copied from a painting on the wall of an ancient pagoda in India.
Krishna is seen here, first in a state of suffering, from the coils and venomous bite of an enormous serpent. Again he is exhibited as a crowned conqueror, having escaped the power of the monster, and standing on its head No one can hesitate to admit the probability of this representation referring originally to the tradition of the merciful promise of God to our fallen parents, Adam and Eve, and the expressive curse denounced upon the serpent, Gen. iii, 15, “I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel." The exposition of this passage by the grandson or great-grandson of Noah, when first settling in Hindoostan, by the incarnation of the Son of God, would give occasion to some representation of it, to preserve it from perishing; especially if he had lived and died in a state of reconciliation with God, and in the assurance of eternal salvation from all the evils which the enmity and subtlety of the serpent had brought on mankind.
While we possess the uncorrupted Oracles of God in the Holy Scriptures, and the pure gospel of Jesus Christ, making known to us the joyful tidings of eternal life, through the sufferings and triumph of Immanuel, God with us, our high privilege is to triumph with our exalted Lord, anticipating his kingdom and glory: but it is no less our and our
to contribute to the destruction of the corrupt superstitions and idolatries of the heathen, and the advancement of their regeneration and salvation, by means of the ministry of evangelical missionaries! This is in accordance with the revealed purpose of God - that idolatry and impurity shall be purged, and "the earth shall be full of the knowledge of the Lord, as the waters cover the sea."
A few miles from Buenos Ayres a woman was busily employed in making a Franciscan friar's dress for her son, two years old; he had been unwell; and during his illness the mother vowed to St. Francis, that if he would restore her son to health, she would make him a friar of his order. St. Francis obligingly interfered, and the child recovered; he has now his head shaved, and is only waiting for his frock, cowl, and sandals, to fulfil his mother's vow. In Spain and Portugal I have seen children of all ages dressed as nuns, monks, or friars, in consequence of vows of this kind. Their appearance to strangers is truly ridiculous; and I doubt if even their patron saints would view a number of nuns and friars, from five to ten years of age, playing at leap-frog and other gambols, without thinking it far from creditable.
ON THE DIVINE ATTRIBUTES.
No. V. THE MERCY OF GOD. MANKIND have at all times been willing to admit, that much of imperfection and weakness clings to their nature; and when seriously called upon to state the foundation upon which their hopes of eternal happiness are built, are not disposed to deny, that much dependence must be placed on the mercy of Him who is to be their future judge. The revelation which He has made of Himself, and the writings of those men who found their opinions on this revelation, seem most forcibly to imply, that He who possesses every attribute in infinite perfection, takes chief delight in manifesting the immensity of His mercy. Unhappily, however, no attribute of the Deity is more subject to misapprehension than this; the sound of mercy is so sweet to the ears of a guilty sinner, that he will listen to nothing else; and when called upon to bear in mind that there are threatenings in the word of God most awfully denounced against sin and all uncleanness, he quiets his rising fears with the consideration that God is merciful.
The object I have in view in the present essay, is to make some few remarks on the real nature of the mercy of God; hoping that by this means I may be able to show some, that the foundation they depend upon for acceptance in the sight of God is frail and insecure; while at the same time we shall discover, that the broad canopy of mercy the Deity has erected, is large enough to shelter beneath it every inhabitant of the world. His mercy is higher than the heavens, and broader than the wide expanse of earth.
I. Let us take a scriptural view of the mercy of God.
The correct definition of mercy seems to be, that it is that disposition of mind by which we are excited to pity and relieve those who are in distress, or to pass by their crimes without inflicting punishment upon them.
Unaided by the light of Revelation, human reason could never have attained a correct view of the true nature of God. The deplorable condition of the heathen world, and the wild and absurd of which even the learned and the philosophic have suc cessively supported, prove that it is quite possible for the same man to understand many mysteries connected with the world in which he lives, and to have many correct opinions in philosophy and science, while at the same time he is deplorably ignorant of the nature and character of the Divine Author of all things. It seems indeed to me impossible, that one ignorant of the immortality of the soul, and the nature of its future destination, could form even a favourable opinion of the Deity; for the many cases which occur of oppressed virtue and successful villany, would argue that God was unmindful of His creatures, or that He did not possess either the power or the will to uphold the best and most virtuous of mankind against the attacks of their malicious enemies. It was left, therefore, for that system, whereby light and immortality are brought to light, fully to vindicate the Divine government; and, therefore, the greater part of my remarks will have reference to the gospel of Jesus Christ.
1. Mercy is an essential perfection of the Divine nature. Misery and wretchedness have the power of calling forth the pity of human creatures; and when we behold complicated sorrows endured by some unfortunate being, we feel disposed to exert the utmost of our power in relieving these distresses. In the Deity, however, this attribute is the expression of his wise and deliberate determination, guided by infinite