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set out on his journey; but the people and clergy of Rome were so much attached to Gregory, that at their request he was recalled. Seven years after this he was elevated to the dignity of pope; when application being made, as appears, by Bertha, who had been more than twenty years married to Ethelbert, diffusing in some good measure the knowledge of Christianity by her religious example and by her ministers, a mission was determined on by Gregory. His pupil Augustin, then abbot of St. Gregory's monastery at Rome, with forty monks, was appointed to this work. Christian simplicity, faith, and zeal, the fruits of the Spirit, and of love to their Saviour, were, however, not among the chief qualities possessed by these missionaries. Hearing in France representations of the difficulties and dangers awaiting them in Britain, their hearts failed them, and Augustin returned to Rome, soliciting to be discharged from the arduous service. The pope, howto
companions to proceed in their enterprize. He gave Augustin letters also to the French king, and to Etherius, bishop of Arles, to obtain their assistance; and thus encouraged, and furnished with interpreters, the party proceeded, and arrived in Britain, A. D. 597.
Augustin, on landing in the isle of Thanet, sent to inform King Ethelbert of his arrival with other missionaries, and to declare the object of their mission. The king appointed an early day to visit them, and an interview was granted in an open field, as Bede says, lest any power of evil spirits should be employed by them against him. Augustin, far from apostolical simplicity, arranged his followers in the order of a procession; raised aloft a silver cross, and displayed a banner, on which was a painting of the Saviour; and thus with affected pomp, and chanting litanies, they moved towards the royal presence. Ethelbert listened to their propositions, which Augustin made by means of interpreters; and though we have no part of the discourse of the missionary, doubtless he offered to the king, eternal life and salvation in the kingdom of God, through the mediation of Jesus Christ: for the king is said to have replied to this effect:-"Your proposals are noble, and your promises inviting but I cannot abandon the religion of my ancestors. However, since you have come so far on purpose to impart what you deem most valuable, you shall have satisfaction. I will take care for your protection, and supply you with all things necessary for your support. And if any of my subjects are willing to embrace your religion, I shall offer no objection."
Ethelbert granted permission for Augustin and his companions to settle at Canterbury, ordering suitable accommodations to be provided. "But whether these favours were the effect of God's blessing upon the discourse and design of Augustin, whether they were the effect of the persuasions of the queen and the Gallican king, the relation and ally of Ethelbert, or whether they were owing to the desire and disposition of the English themselves to receive the gospel, it is impossible for us, at this distance of time, and would be invidious, to determine."
Augustin had recourse again to parade in entering the royal city, to make an impression on the minds of the pagans. Carrying before them," says Bede, "as was their custom, the holy cross, and image of the Great King, our Lord Jesus Christ, they sang in concert this litany, We beseech thee, O Lord, in all thy mercy, that thy wrath and indignation may be taken away from this city, and from this thy holy house, for we have sinned. Alleluia.'" Having taken possession of the mansion granted them, "they began," says Bede, "to imitate the apostolical life of the primitive church, exercising themselves in constant prayers, watchings,
and fastings, preaching the word of God to whom they were able, despising all things of this world, as not belonging to them, and receiving all necessary things according to the doctrines which they taught, being prepared to suffer, or even to die for that truth which they had preached. The consequence was, some believed and were baptized, admiring the simplicity of their innocent life, and the sweetness of their doctrine."
Miracles, if Bede's account is to be believed, confirmed the preaching of Augustin; and the king, observing these things, and what he deemed the innocent lives of the missionaries, delighted with the precious promises of the gospel, professed his faith in Christ, renounced his idols, and was baptized. The queen's chapel was no longer sufficient to contain the increasing number of the converts; a heathen temple was there. fore consecrated to their use, and dedicated, it is said, to St. Pancras. Ethelbert declared that he would compel no man to become a Christian; but on making known his purpose to show favour to those who embraced Christianity, many followed the example of the king. Ten thousand converts are said to have been baptized in one day at a small river, near the mouth of the Medway.
Most readers will probably doubt concerning the spiritual and intelligent character of Augustin's converts, especially since the principal instruction afforded to the ignorant Saxons was through interpreters, and accompanied with superstitious ceremonies and service in Latin. Fuller remarks, in words that imply much, "This conversion was done without persecution, yea or any considerable opposition, costing some pains, no torture, some sweat, no blood; not even a martyr being made in the whole managing thereof."
Gregory had consecrated Augustin bishop of Kent, before he left Rome. But seeing the fruit of his mission so abundant, to secure his authority, Augustin hastened to France, and procured from the archbishop of Arles, consecration, as archbishop of England. In this procedure the ambition of Augustin is manifest, and the difference between his policy and the conduct of the apostles of Christ. His new dignity, he was aware, would increase his priestly influence; and, according to his expectations, Ethelbert immediately loaded the archbishop with every mark of royal favour, making Canterbury the metropolitan see.
Augustin now dispatched Laurentius, a presbyter, and Peter, a monk, with two others, to inform Pope Gregory of his successes, his miracles, and his consecration; and to solicit answers to several questions relating to his future policy in the forming an ecclesiastical system for England. Some of the queries give us but a mean idea of Augustin's attainments in scriptural knowledge: while others show the prevalence of his superstition, vanity, and ambition. Gregory's answers, also, are some of them too trifling, and others besides too indelicate to be presented to our readers. Still the letter from the pope is interesting, so far as it proves, that though Gregory was lofty in his pretensions as the occupier of the supposed chair of St. Peter, he had not assumed that exorbitant and blasphemous authority claimed by his pontifical successors.
The first question of Augustin was, "How are bishops to behave with respect to their clergy?-Into how many portions are the offerings at the altar divided? And how ought a bishop to act in the church? For satisfaction in the first point, the Pope refers him to St. Paul's Epistle to Timothy. To the second, he answers, that it was the custom of the church to divide the offerings into four parts-one for the bishop; another for the support of the clergy; the third for the poor; and the fourth for the repairs of the churches.
As to the last article, Gregory observes, that Austin, being a monk, ought not to live apart from the rest of the clergy but if any were not ordained, and wished to marry, they might receive their stipends at their own houses. Augustin's second question related to the rites and ceremonies which he should establish in England, as he found those observed in Gaul differed from those used at Rome. Gregory, with much moderation, answered, that as he had known the church of Rome from his youth, whether in that or any French church he might see any thing apparently more fit for the service of God, that might be chosen. "For," as Fox translates it, "things are not to be beloved for the place sake, but the place is to be beloved for the things that be good: wherefore such things as be good, godly, and religious, those choose out of all churches, and introduce to your people, that they may take root in the minds of Englishmen."
In the seventh question, Augustin asks how he ought to manage with the bishops of France; to which the pope replies, that he allows him no manner of jurisdiction over them, because he did not design to deprive the archbishop of Arles of that authority which he already possessed. The letter of Austin, and the verbal reports of his messengers, inspired Gregory with lofty notions concerning the progress of this mission; and he sent back Mellitus, Paulinus, and other new missionaries, to strengthen his hands. By these the pope sent to Augustin a pall, an entire and magnificent habit, contrived to adorn a metropolitan, and without which no archbishop is recognized by the Romish church, or allowed to consecrate a bishop. Anticipating increasing success, Gregory gave directions to Augustin to ordain twelve bishops, and an archbishop of York, with twelve suffragans under him. An archbishop was to be consecrated for London; but Augustin's authority was to be supreme; as Gregory says "You shall be endued with authority, not only over those bishops that you constitute, and over those constituted by the bishop of York, but also you shall have all other priests of whole Britain subject unto our Lord Jesus Christ." In this Gregory acted in the true spirit of antichrist, who had now nearly reached the summit of his pernicious claims, and it suited the domineering temper of Augustin.
Miracles were reported to have been wrought by Augustin, whom Gregory admonished not to be elated by such marks of the Divine favour; but, as the Saviour admonished his disciples, rather to rejoice that his "name was written in heaven."
Gregory wrote also to King Ethelbert, congratulating him on his conversion to the faith of Christ; commending Augustin as eminently qualified for his station, and remarkable for his knowledge of the Scriptures, and exhorting him to attend to Augustin's instructions, cooperating with him in converting the idolaters. To excite his attention more effectually, Gregory informed the king that the world was nearly at an end, and that the reign of the saints was soon about to commence, of which he would be assured by various signs. He addressed a letter at the same time to Queen Bertha, to quicken her zeal in confirming the king in this belief of Christianity, and in urging him forward in promoting the objects of the mission. That these endeavours were effectual is abundantly evident in the honours heaped upon Augustin, and the influence exerted in his favour. (To be continued.)
BAPTIST MISSIONARY SOCIETY.
ON Wednesday, June 19, the Anniversary of the Baptist Missionary Society commenced by a Sermon, in the morning, at the Poultry Chapel, London, from the Rev. W. Knibb, Missionary from Jamaica, on Psalm lxvii, 1, 2. In the evening, at Surrey Chapel, a Sermon was delivered by the Rev. J. Smith of Ilford, on Phil. i, 12.
On Thursday morning the business meeting of the Society was held at Spa Fields Chapel. Prayer having been offered by the Rev. W. Groser, of Maidstone, the chair was taken by J. C. Gotch, Esq. of Kettering. The Rev. J. Dyer, Secretary, read the Report, which gave an encouraging detail of the Society's operations, except with respect to Jamaica. "The last accounts which arrived from Montego Bay, stated that Messrs. Nichols and Abbot, together with the Wesleyan Missionary, had been again committed to prison for the offence of preaching, but were admitted to bail by order of the Chief Justice. Notwithstanding all the persecution, upwards of two hundred individuals had been baptized, and added to the churches at Kingston, Spanish Town, and St. Thomas in the Vale. T. F. Buxton, Esq., M. P. gave a most heart-rending picture of slavery in the West Indies, and communicated many interesting particulars relating to the present aspect of affairs in favour of the oppressed negro. Government, he assured the meeting, intended a most liberal policy towards the missionaries in Jamaica, and the religious privileges of the slaves, by which a vastly extended field would be opened for the labours of the Society.
The Rev. T. Price, of London; the Rev. J. Penny, from Calcutta; the Rev. Dr. Cox, of London; J. Crop. per, Esq. of Liverpool; the Rev. Eustace Carey, from the East Indies; the Rev. C. Thompson; W. B. Gurney, Esq.; the Rev. W. Knibb; the Rev. J. Dyer; and the Rev. C. Stovell, addressed the Meeting.
The Rev. J. Dyer read the cash accounts for the past year, — 12,7221. 9s. 8d. —about 4007. more than the preceding year: but still the Society was 1000/. in debt. Two anonymous donations were anounced, one of 100%., and another of 250/.; and one of 2001. from J. Cropper, Esq., of Liverpool, a member of the Society of Friends.
BAPTIST IRISH SOCIETY.
On Friday, June 21, the nineteenth Anniversary of this Society was held, after a public breakfast, at the City of Loudon Tavern, W. B. Gurney, Esq. in the chair.
After singing and prayer, the Rev. G. Pritchard read the Report of the past year, which gave a most encouraging view of the Society's operations. The Meeting was then addressed by the Rev. T. Green, of Thrapstone; J. Payne, Esq. Barrister; the Rev, C. Stovell, of London; Mr. C. W. Carr; the Rev. S. Davis, of Ireland, but recently returned from America, where he had been making collections for the relief of his countrymen; the Rev. J. Morris, of Portsea; the Rev. J. Hoby, of Birmingham; the Rev. Dr. Cox, of Hackney; the Rev. J. Phillippo; and the Rev. J. Davis, of Walworth.
COLLECTIONS FOR THE RELIEF OF IRELAND, MADE IN AMERICA.
THE Rev. S. Davis, the principal agent of the Baptist Irish Society, has just returned from a tour to the United States of America, in behalf of the Society. He travelled upwards of 4,000 miles in those States, and succeeded in collecting 1,004/. 10s. From the time of his leaving England to his return, a few days since, his whole expenses amounted to 1191. 10s.-Patriot.
BORN A. M. 1056. DIED A. M 2006, AGED 950 YEARS.
The Parentage of Noah.
NOAH, the third in descent from Enoch, was born only sixty-nine years after the translation of his great grandfather. Methuselah, the son of Enoch, enjoyed the advantage of his father's ministry and example for a period of three hundred years. Lamech, the son of Methuselah, was born in the one hundred and eighty-seventh year of his father's age; so that he was privileged to live with holy Enoch for one hundred and thirteen years before his removal to glory.
Methuselah and Lamech seem to have been good men; but infidelity and wickedness prodigiously increased. The souls of these devout believers would, therefore, be shocked and grieved at the growing impiety, and the numerous apostasies from among "the sons of God." The natural fruits of ungodliness, oppression and barbarous outrage, committed by the violent " sons of men," alarmed and distressed the decreasing ranks of the pious; and those who faithfully served God would sigh for deliverance and repose, which it is probable that Enoch had clearly predicted.
While Lamech was lamenting the aboundings of iniquity, and labouring in the toilsome cultivation of his land, invaded from time to time by the lawless bands of infidels, he was blessed with the birth of a son. As it was in the case of Moses, whose parents saw that "he was a goodly, a proper child" (Exod. ii, 2; Heb. xi, 23), Lamech entertained great expectations of relief and satisfaction by his means: he therefore gave him the name of Noah, which signifies Rest, or Comfort. The inspired penman says, "And he called his name Noah, saying, This same shall comfort us concerning the work and toil of our hands, because of the ground which the LORD hath cursed." Gen. v, 29. Many think that Lamech supposed this child was the promised "seed of the woman," the Messiah.
From "the prophecies that went before" concerning him, treasured in the memory of his father, and probably some new intimations of the Divine will, it was foreseen that Noah would be, not only a comfort to his parents, but a public blessing to the church of God, and even an eminent type of Messiah, the true Comforter of the church, and their everlasting Saviour.
The Religious Character of Noah.
The extraordinary character of Noah is mentioned in connection with that of Job and of Daniel in the book of the prophet Ezekiel. There the holiness of his life is spoken of in terms of the highest approbation. No Janguage could more accurately and comprehensively express the religious character of Noah, than that which is employed by the sacred historian. In describ ing the universal corruption, he observes, "But Noah found grace in the eyes of the LORD. Noah was a just man and perfect in his generation, and Noah walked with God." Gen. vi, 8, 9. This testimony of truth, in strict agreement with the whole Scriptures, whilst it properly inagnifies the grace of God, does equal honour to that eminently holy man. It ascribes nothing to the inherent purity of his nature: but exhibiting him as a fallen child of Adam, it directs us to regard his distinguished excellencies as wholly derived from God. "Noah found grace in the eyes of the LORD." He was a monument of sovereign grace. He was dedicated to God by his pious parents even from the day of his birth; but we are not informed at what period he received into his heart the doctrine of heavenly wisdom; though we have reason to believe he embraced it from
the ministry of his venerable father, and that he gave himself to the LORD in his youth. Yet he would doubtless cherish and express the sentiments of the holy apostle, the uniform acknowledgment of the whole church of God, "By the grace of God, I am what I am." 1 Cor. xv, 10.
"Noah was a just man;" an admirable illustration of the doctrine of free justification by faith in the promised Messiah. Thus have all believers in every age been justified in the sight of God: not only Paul and Peter, and readers of the New Testament, but David, and Abraham, and Abel.
"Noah was perfect in his generation;" in the times in which he lived: not indeed absolutely free from the sinful infirmities of a fallen nature, but a man of pious integrity. He was a worthy example of consistent godliness; persevering in his course of faith and holiness, when all around him was infidelity and atheism, intemperance and debauchery, riotous violence and savage confusion. Noah was "a lily among thorns, diffusing its sweetness in the wilderness: a light burning and shining in the blackness of darkness. Therefore was he the favourite of Heaven, and the delight of the Most High, who was pleased to constitute him the representative, deliverer, and restorer of the human race."
"Noah walked with God;" he was an excellent pattern of active religion. He lived not to himself, but to God, and to benefit and save his fellow-creatures. Like his honoured ancestor Enoch, Noah walked with God in his secret retirements for meditation and prayer in private, in the bosom of his well-instructed family, and before the eyes of all men in public; magnifying his profession as a believer, trusting in the promises of a covenant God, and expecting, in due time, the satisfactions of a blissful immortality.
O reader! is such your character? Are you walking with God, doing honour to your profession as a Chris tian, and rendering yourself a blessing to mankind? Above all things, let your consciences testify the sincerity of your faith in Christ, and of your obedience to his delightful commands.
LORD CRAVEN AND HIS NEGRO SERVANT. LORD CRAVEN lived in London when that sad calamity the Plague raged. His house was in that part of the town, since called (from the circumstance of Craven House being situated there), Craven Buildings. On the plague growing epidemic, his Lordship, to avoid the danger, resolved to go to his seat in the country. His coach and six were accordingly at the door, his baggage put up, and all things in readiness for the journey. As he was walking through the hall, with his hat on, his cane under his arm, and putting on his gloves, in order to step into his carriage, he overheard his Negro servant, who served him as postillion, saying to another servant, "I suppose, by my Lord's quitting London to avoid the Plague, that his God lives in the country, and not in town." The poor Negro said this in the simplicity of his heart, he really believing in a plurality of gods. The speech, however, struck Lord Craven very sensibly, and made him pause. "My God," thought he, "lives everywhere, and can preserve me in the town as well as in the country. I'll e'en stay where I am; the ignorance of that Negro has reproved me; Lord, pardon that unbelief, and that distrust of thy providence, which would make me think of running away from thy hand."
He immediately ordered his horses to be taken off from the coach, and his luggage to be brought in. He continued in London, was remarkably useful among his sick neighbours, and never caught the infection,
Letters to a Mother, upon Education.
On learning Music.
Dear Madam, WHATEVER may be the destination of your son, whether to trade or science, I have now proposed to treat upon an accomplishment, which will be no burden or hindrance, but a source of real relaxation. Let him then be initiated into the use and knowledge of some one musical instrument early in life. The acquisition of this knowledge will be easy, and more extensive if it be begun at about seven years of age.
In the choice of an instrument, it seems desirable to select those which are portable, and not of the most expensive kind, at least to begin with. The next qualification of the instrument should be its admitting of the union of the voice along with its music.
The extent to which the acquisition of music should he carried, need not be a matter of much concern at the beginning. If your child receives his first lessons from a good player, it will soon be discoverable whether he has much taste for the acquirement. This will be indicated by his own voluntarily practising the tunes he is acquainted with, and trying to learn others. Should you discover that he possesses a decided genius for music, you may then provide for its cultivation by affording to him additional lessons. The extent however to which music should be carried is soon arrived at. If he can play and sing common tunes and pieces without much difficulty, so as to have it within his own power to perfect himself in the knowledge of them by subsequent efforts, he has learned sufficient.
The qualities of singing and playing which he should be taught to emulate, should be those of simplicity. There is a natural sweetness in the human voice, which cultivation often obliterates. If you hear some celebrated fashionable singer, and then listen to some child or girl, who simply "warbles her wood notes wild," 1 think you will need only to consult your own emotions to decide which style you would wish your son to cultivate. I have heard many persons sing, possessed of every degree of scientific cultivation; but the tones I remember after all, and delight to recal to memory, were those of a young farmer's man, who sang bass to a fine old church tune, and those of a girl in a village choir, in a church in which I on a single occasion officiated. The same faults attend the modern style, as it is called, both of singing and playing. In both, the effort seems to be to produce admiration at the supposed difficulty of the performance. Accordingly, you hear a public singer stay upon a note longer than ever you had imagined the lungs of a man could have supported it; and then, while you are expecting that he must come to a close, he swells out the note much longer; which, however, is not "lost in middle air," as you then imagine and even begin to hope it will be, he adds various flourishes, and after all, loudly and boldly finishes by a prolonged note. The applause which follows is usually proportioned to the adiniration excited by this feat. But in all this there is no music: it is the power of the man's chest which is so admirable. The same may be said of playing: the admiration of the music is lost in the admiration at the inconceivable rapidity of the performance, or the multitude of involved half notes. Still this is not musie. Some of the most affecting pieces which we hear in the psalmody of the church or elsewhere, consist of but few notes, and are devoid of scientific ornament.
"When unadorn'd, adorn'd the most."
Of such a nature are the tunes called St. Ann's, Can
terbury, the 104th Psalm, the Old Hundredth, &c. &c. and certain Scotch and Irish tunes. These are some of the best adapted vehicles of piety. Let the performer feel the melody, and he can scarcely fail to play or sing effectively.
It is observed by Dr. Knox, in one of his essays upon Music (into some of the sentiments of which I find myself to have unconsciously slid while attempting to utter my own), that the lyre of Orpheus, and other early musicians, by which such wonderful effects are said to have been produced, appears to have been a very simple instrument as to its construction, and to have admitted but of a small variety of tones.
In the same essay, he justly reprobates modern taste in music. He predicts, that the day will come when he will be pronounced the greatest musician that ever was heard, that can make his pipe squeak five minutes longer than any other man in the country. Such, however, is the prevalence of this false taste, that I have lately read the remark in a well-conducted publication, that except a young lady can play in this fashionable manner, her performance would, in any genteel society, be hardly listened to; and hence has arisen that dearth of this simple and interesting amusement in families, it being considered presumptuous for any but the best players, as they are called, to play before others.
The cultivation of music, simple, effective, genuine music, tends to provide an exquisite relaxation for the intervals of care and business. It enables the possessor to soothe many a solitary hour. It brings the full tide of early associations upon the memory, and softens the heart under the united influence of sympathy and affection. It appeals to the feelings by a natural adaptation to them, which has been confessed by mankind in every age and in every clime. It tends to divert the anguish of a burthened heart, and to cultivate those sensibilities, upon whose liveliness the exercise of virtue itself is dependent.
I am, dear Madam, yours, &c.
BLESSEDNESS OF HOPE.
HOPE is defined to be a gentle and sweet effusion or expansion of the soul towards some expected good; so that when we are full of hope, we feel a certain excitement both within and without, together with a glowing but pleasant heat from the blood and spirits universally diffused: and when hope by this means is strong enough to produce courage, it stands ready to encounter every difficulty, bids defiance to danger, and conquers all before it. Hence some call it the manna from heaven, that comforts us in all extremities; others the pleasant and honest flatterer, for nothing but hope will caress the unhappy, in expectation of happiness in the bosom of futurity. When all other things fail us, hope will stand by us to the last. It gives freedom to the captive, health to the sick, victory to the defeated, and wealth to the beggar.
How blest the man, supremely blest,
And wav'ring fortune on him frown,
To him would be nor fear nor pain; Hope's soothing voice would blunt his sting, And render all his terrors vain. Cheer'd at the thought of heaven in view, No pang would then his bosom move; To weeping friends he'd bid adieu, Steadfast in hope to meet above."
BENEFITS AND PLEASURE OF EARLY RISING.
A SUBJECT which refers to the right use of our time, and the appropriate and rational employment of those talents which are given to us by the Great Creator, to whom we are accountable for them, must be confessedly important. Such a subject is EARLY RISING; and when once the benefits derivable from it, and the evils which attend its neglect, are impartially considered by any reflecting mind, they will scarcely fail to produce a determination to adopt the practice.
There are three things which may powerfully excite us to the practice of Early Rising.
1st. The necessity of it.
Health is so valuable a blessing, that it is the duty of every one who possesses it to adopt all possible means for its permanent continuance; and early rising will be found most eminently to conduce to its enjoyment. But can it be secured in giving nature more sleep than she requires? Can it be by torpidly lying in a close atmosphere, after the sun has risen in his glory upon the bright face of creation? A judicious writer has remarked, "Nothing can be more prejudicial to tender constitutions, or studious and contemplative persons, than lying long in bed, lolling and soaking in sheets, after any one is distinctly awake. It necessarily thickens the juices, enervates the solids, and weakens the constitution."
To let the precious moments of the beautiful morning flee from us, or be spent in the indulgence of habits which not only keep both the physical and mental powers in a state of inactivity, but turn that to our sad disadvantage which was given for our lasting good, is surely unwise, if it be not criminal. It is not for the enjoyment of such a one that the sun begins his course with unclouded brightness, that nature puts forth her most inviting charms, or displays an host
"Innumerable as the stars of night,
Or stars of morning dew-drops, which the sun
2. The benefits of Early Rising.
No time is more appropriate for holding intercourse with the Great Father of our spirits for reflection on the things which are unseen, and the study of that volume which leads to glory and immortality, than the early hour of the morning; before the din of traffic breaks the holy silence- before any sound meets our ear, save the inviting warbling of the grove-and before the cares of day rush upon us, and discompose the solemn train of our thoughts.
There is something in the morning, which, instead of distracting our meditation, gives to us those calmer energies, enabling us to profit from our devotions, instilling into us that peace of mind, and endowing us with that holy fortitude, which best qualify us for the engagements of the day, and best prepare us for all its contemplated and unlooked-for troubles. The reason of our spirituality being so often cold and lifeless, arises in a great degree from an inattention to the proper season of devotion, and this being postponed to that time when the affairs of the world call for our service, and forbid us the closet. And besides these considerations, there is no time in which our mental powers are capable of study with that clearness and discernment which are possessed in the early morning.
Not only does devotion claim the morning as her most acceptable time, but there are other concerns, which, if not attended to before our daily avocations commence, an inconvenience will inevitably be felt, which it will not then be in our power to obviate; and thus we shall be incapacitated for the successful and happy discharge of those duties which God and man require.
When the beauties of the morning are viewed and surveyed by one who traces the works of nature "up to nature's God," they enrich and exalt the mind, and afford it that pure joy which amusements of the world could not produce.
"He sees with other eyes than theirs; where they
What makes another smile, makes him adore."
How powerfully is the greatness and goodness of God manifested in the dawn of morning;-by the rising of the sun, by the Divine ordination diffusing joy and gladness all around, and like a herald announcing to a slumbering world that another day is born;-in the unfolding of the landscape, presenting in such rich variety its glowing foliage; and in the lark soaring to hymn his praise, whilst a thousand other songsters of the grove join to swell the chorus of the anthem ! How suitable is the silence which pervades nature at that time for contemplation on the objects she presents, unbroken save by the footsteps of the husbandman "going forth to his labour until the evening," or the nimble movements of the joyous cattle!
What more majestic sight-more enrapturing scene - can there be to entice the sleeper from his bed, to inspire him with reverence, and touch him with gratitude to the Great Ruler of the universe, for works so glorious and blessings so unbounded! Have we not statesmen, divines, and philosophers of the greatest eminence, as examples of early rising? Their names are too numerous to mention: suffice it to remark, that it is to this habit we are indebted to Dr. Doddridge and Mr. Wesley for nearly all their imperishable works.
But, above all, let the shortness of life, and the fleeting nature of all sublunary things, awaken in our breasts a due concern to redeem the time, and to employ it to the best purpose, remembering the true and solemn lines of the poet :
"Catch, then, oh! catch the transient hour,
AMERICAN INDIANS' NOTION OF THE SOUL. PETER MARTYR, a contemporary of Columbus, mentions the idea of the Indians on this subject.
"They confess the soul to be immortal; and having put off the bodily clothing, they imagine it goeth forth to the woods and the mountains, and that it liveth there perpetually in caves: nor do they exempt it from eating and drinking, but that it should be fed there. The answering voices heard from caves and hollows, which we call echoes, they suppose to be the souls of the departed, wandering through those places."