« AnteriorContinuar »
Delivered at the grave of a friend.......
1 THESS. V. 12, 13.
And we beseech you, brethren, to know them which labour among you, and are over you in the Lord, and admonish you; And to esteem them very highly in love for their works' sake. And be at peace among yourselves.
THE RECIPROCAL DUTIES OF A MINISTER AND HIS
DELIVERED AT THE ADMISSION OF A MINISTER.
CHRISTIANITY has been long enough in the world to see its ministers in all the variety of situation, which the passions, the prejudices, and the interests of mankind can suggest and impose. It has fared with the servants, as it did with the master-on whom the multitude would one day obtrude the regal honours and dignity, and the next, drag out to the punishment of a slave. The world has preserved no medium in this-but according to the prevailing humour of the time and place, has elevated men of the ministerial profession to the highest pinnacle of
wealth and power, ranked them among, sometimes above, the gods of the earth, or pursued them into corners, loaded them with reproach, and accounted them as the "filth of the world, "and the offscouring of all things."—It has been our lot, to exist in the age of senseless, insipid, profligate infidelity-Unbelievers of other times were men of learning, of philosophic acuteness, some of them men of virtue-they thought it necessary to employ what had at least the semblance of reason and argument, against the gospel-but the unbelievers of to-day save themselves a great deal of labour on this subject, and successfully oppose to all that can be written or spoken in defence of revealed religion, the irresistible arguments of a loud laugh, a hard heart, a stupid head, and a dissolute life. One great advantage results from this state of things-the ministers of the gospel are relieved from the necessity of employing what talents they have, in defending the outworks of religion, and thereby enjoy full leisure, if they be disposed to improve it, for attending to its internal polity, and securing, or even extending, its frontier. We are, through the blessing of providence, men, brethren, and fathers, left at perfect liberty to do, and to receive, as much benefit by the gospel of Jesus as we can-we are happily placed in that