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in, with her little rush light, to il. And what was the consequence ? A lumine the darkness of the sun, and sad degeneracy ere long took place; make clear and palpable what the contentions, errors, and backslidings Bible had left obscure. It would were multiplied; and in less than be endless to refer to all the experi- iwo centuries, they needed another ments of this kind which, during the reformation to place them back last eighteen hundred years, have upon the ground of the early rebeen successively tried in the church. formers. But the issue, in all cases, has been But most of the alleged reformamuch the same. The gospel has tions in the church of Christ have been perverted and corrupted, and not been real. They have been the the power of it has been turned work of furious and half-crazed faaway. The great source of light natics, or of dreamy mystics, who, and hope has been removed, and a in the effort to improve upon the shadow has been substituted in its work of the Savior, have perverted place. And it has mattered little as and polluted all that their hands to the result, whether the adultera- have touched. Such was the pretion took the form of an addition, or tended reformation under Montanus, a subtraction. Those who have in the second century; and that unthought the standard of the gospel der Manes, in the third ; both of too low, and have wished to raise it, whom professed to be the promised and those who have thought it too Comforter from heaven, and to have high, and have labored to depress a commission to reform the religion it, have usually come together, in a of Christ. Such, too, was the reforlittle time. The extremes have met mation attempted by the fanatics in in the same result, and that has been the sixteenth century, who denounone of delusion, corruption, and ced Luther as not worthy the name wickedness.

of a reformer, and undertook to To make the experiment of de- carry forward his half-way measparting from Christ appear the more ures to perfection. And such, it hopeful, it has sometimes been in. may be feared, are not a few of the troduced under the name and form misnamed reformations of the pres. of a reformation. A real reforma- ent day. No movement of this kind, tion, if put in the place of Christ, and whether social, political, or moral, trusted to as a foundation of hope, which virtually sets aside the goswill soon prove itself to be but a pel,—which professes to improve broken reed. This was painfully upon it, to go beyond it, or to proillustrated in the case of the Refor. ceed without it, can long prosper. mation of the sixteenth century. It is sure to terminate in corruption Many of the reformed churches, and defeat, and to involve its abetwhen once they had escaped from tors, sooner or later, in shame and the iron grasp of Popery, and found ruin. themselves out of the reach of their Were we to speak of other experienemies, began to feel as though ments which have been tried in the they had passed all dangers. Back- church of Christ, we should notice sliding, degeneracy, errors in doc those growing out of a carnal, worldtrine, and corruptions in practice, ly policy. There have been those were scarcely feared; because they in past ages—there are some such were regarded as scarcely possible. now—who, not content with proChristians trusted to the Reforma. moting a holy, spiritual cause, by tion, and to its attendant blessings— holy and spiritual means, have been their settled peace and their legal inclined to resort to other measures. establishment-to secure them from Some have used flattery, and some all future ills, and make them happy. force. Motives of self-interest or Vol. VI.


ambition have been employed, and ings and backslidings ; seasons of a worldly expediency has been sub- light and hope, and then of darkness. stituted in place of duty. With a Such, we say, is the appearance to view to the more rapid increase of the casual observer of providence, numbers, some have been willing to and to the ordinary, though it may conceal or soften the more offensive be extensive, reader of history. points of the gospel ; to lower its But the intelligent Christian, with high and uncompromising claims; his Bible open before him, and his or to throw open the doors of the heart warmed with the great subject church a little wider than our Savior of redemption, studies the book of supposed would be consistent with providence, and reads history, with its safety. But facts have long ago other eyes. He learns from his demonstrated that all such expedi. Bible, that as all things were made ents are a great deal worse than by Christ, so they were all made for fruitless. They are positively sin. him; that “he is head over all things ful, corrupting and dangerous. They to the church ;" and that he overrules draw away the church from Christ, all things in providence, with a view and place it on another foundation; to the great purposes of redemption. and the first storm that blows is suf. In the Bible, redemption is presented ficient to show that this new founda. as the great work of God; that tion is all sand.

which was performed at the greatest The foregoing discussion is in- expense to himself; that which is tended to teach us, and to impress best calculated to show forth bis upon us, several lessons. And, first, glory. The creation of this world the connexion of God's great work was but a scaffolding, on which the of providence, as recorded, in part, greater work of redemption was to on the page of history, with his be performed; and the entire work greater work of redemption, as un- of providence in respect to this world folded in the gospel. To the casual –ihe changes and revolutions which observer of providence-to the or- take place among men,—the rise dinary reader of this world's histo- and fall of states and empires,-ry, the whole appears like a chaos These all are in some way connected of incidents, no thread, no system, with, and subsidiary to, the great no line of connexion running through purposes of redeeming mercy. it. One course of events is seen Having gained these important inhere, and another there. Some na- timations from the Bible, the Christions become civilized and refined, tian student now looks out upon the while others are left to their native world, and back upon the wide field barbarism. Kingdoms rise upon the of its history; and what before stage, one after another, and become seemed so chaotic and disordered, great and powerful, and then pass puts on the appearance of system away and are forgotten. And the and form. A strong line of conhistory of the church seems scarcely nexion is seen running through it; less a chaos, than that of the world. a unity of object is discovered; and Changes are continually going on redemption is seen to be the central within it, and around it, and these, point, towards which every thing apparently, without much order. iends, and for which all exist

. In New doctrines or measures are in the death of his beloved Son, God troduced, and then laid aside. Her has opened a way of life and salva. esies make their appearance, and tion for ruined man. He has laid have their advocates, and after a a foundation of hope for the world. while are refuted, and die away. It is a sure foundation; it is the only Now the church is protected, and foundation. And this point God is now persecuted. There are revive continually and variously illustrating

in his providence. The foregoing we would regard it as God does, or remarks teach us how he illustrates if we would be greatly interested it. It is by an endless succession and instructed by it. of experiments. God is showing The second lesson which the subhis creatures, not only in his word, ject is fitted to impress upon us, is but by the events of his providence, the importance of that first prioci. -by actual and oft repeated exper. ple of Protestantism,--the Bible the iments, taking place before their only rule of faith and practice. eyes, that the gospel is the only This implies, that when the canon source of real blessing to them, and of Scripture is once settled, and the that if they would be happy, they meaning of it ascertained, there be must put their trust in Christ alone. no more questions asked respecting Some of these experiments we have it. We are to rest in the decisions already considered; and the ma- of God's holy word,—desiring neiking of them, and of others like ther to rise above it, nor to fall bethem, has filled up, to a great ex. low it; neither to add to it, nor tent, the history both of the church take from it. and world. The entire history of The great Protestant principle as the past is little more than a history to the sufficiency of Scripture has of these various experiments, all been violated in several ways, and standing connected with the great by very different classes of persons. subject of redemption, and all cal. It has been violated by Tractarians, culated and intended—if men could Romanists, and all those other sects, but see it—to call them back from who would connect with the Bible, the vain search after happiness, and and receive as a part of their rule bring them to trust in Christ alone. of faith, the traditions of the elders,

President Edwards commenced and canons of the church. It has an extended history of the church, been violated by fanatics, mystics, and entitled it “ A History of Re- and impostors, who have made predemption.” In a more enlarged tences to inspiration, and have subsense, the same title might be given stituted their own dreams and fanto a full history of the world. It is cies in place of the revelations of all a history of redemption. Not God. It has been violated by lib. that every thing which has taken eralists of various names, who, displace on earth has been of a directly satisfied with much that the Bible religious character; far from it. contains, have undertaken, by dint But every thing has stood connect. of criticism and false interpretation, ed, in some way, with redemption. to cut it down, or explain it away, Every thing has had a bearing on till nothing is left which offends the this mighty subject. Even in those proud and selfish heart. But in parts of the earth where Christ is whatever direction, or by whatever not named, and his religion is not means, the great principle before us known, the providence of God has has been invaded, the flood-gates been silently, secretly at work, in of corruption have been invariably subserviency to the designs of re- opened, through which streams of deeming mercy.

An experiment error and wickedness have poured, has been going on there, which is to desolate the vineyard of the Lord. already of great value to the church Nearly all those vain and wicked and world, showing the hopeless experiments which have been made misery of departing from God, and in Christendom during the last eighlosing the knowledge of his salva. teen hundred years, and in the mation. It is in its connexion with re. king of which the church has been demption, that we must come to corrupted and wasted, have come in look at the history of the world, if upon it in this way. They could have come in no other. If the Bi. come to Christ. We try every othble had been uniformly and consis. er foundation, before we consent to tently adhered to, as the only rule build upon Christ alone. The world's of faith and practice, those long history is filled up with vaio and ages of delusion and darkness, so fruitless experiments, in the search painful to the eye and the heart of after happiness; nor is the heart of benevolence, had never been. The restless man weaned from them even church had been comparatively pure, now. He is as much inclined as and the world had been blessed. ever to forsake the fountain of liv.

But the great lesson which this ing waters, and hew out for himself subject is fitted to teach and im- cisterns which can hold no water. press, is that with which the discus. How long is this miserable course sion commenced. The Gospel the of things to continue? When shall grand remedy for human woes, and it have an end? Is it not sime, even the only source of real blessing to now, that we commence learning the world. " Other foundation can the lessons of heavenly wisdom? no man lay than that is laid, which Is it not time that we listen to the is Jesus Christ." Of all lessons, voice of our Heavenly Father, cry. divine or human, this is infinitely ing to us, not only from the pages the most important to be learned. of his word, but from every leaf It is the lesson which, of all others, and line of the great book of his God has been at the most pains to providence, and saying: None but teach us.

And yet it is that to which Christ. Nothing but Christ. Oik. we are naturally the most averse. er foundation can no man lay than We turn every way, before we that is laid, which is Jesus Christ.


Bayonets and cannon-balls have kings penetrated by the enemy, and disclosed a new and distinct era in her government reduced by despe. our history. Fifteen years ago, Mex- ration from driveling imbecility 10 ico afforded no prospect of game to a “bedizened nothing," these cona far-sighted and a strong falcon, ex- stitute briefly the elements of a “con cept some covetous vision of that quered peace," as Coleridge would sort may have flitted across the mind have termed it. From the first, pre. of some of the chivalry of the South. dictions were made concerning the Within that time poor Mexico's his. intentions of our government, of tory has been unravelled from the such an incredible nature, that most web of destiny in galloping haste, minds revolted from them. Some and she now finds herself a helpless predicted that Mexico would be quarry, with the falcon upon her, forced at the point of the bayonet to and barely saving her life by the yield up all claim to Texas, not only most humiliating concessions. Her io the Nueces river, but to the Rio armies, although nerved with des. del Norte, and they regarded this peration, have fled before the Sax. consummation of annexation in a ons; her best leaders have furnished legal title, written though it might no charm to dispel the fatal spell be in blood, as the extreme of inten ruining her, and even the strong tion on the part of our government! holds nature gave her for defense, But the idea of making, by the same have played her false. At every laudable means, the Rio del Norte point defeated, the sacred city of her a boundary between the two coud

tries, then boldly leaving that to has been sanctioned by the two gov. swallow up New Mexico, and then eroments. Our flag was floating rushing westwardly to the Pacific to over the “ Halls of the Montezudo the same office for California, mas,” and had been flung to the never entered many minds, except breeze from the loftiest peaks of the the privileged behind the curtain! Cordilleras. Mexico was at our feet, And yet it has been done. Palo and we of course dictated our own Alto, Resaca de la Palma, Buena terms. By these terms, Texas, as Vista, Monterey, Vera Cruz, Cerro far west as the Rio del Norte, beGordo, Cherubusco, and Mexico, comes ours; the entire Province of have all become words to us as noted New Mexico, and the territory north as Austerlitz, Friedland, and Wag. of the river Gila, and a line which ram, words indicative of a victorious divides Upper and Lower California, but bloody march to complete con- is also ceded to us, making an area quest. For our part, we must con- of “ seven hundred miles north and fess, when we looked back over south, and nine hundred miles east some modern scenes in American and west.” Our late conquests, abbistory, as connected with the bar. solved from crime by treaty, barous extermination or removal of Indians from their own lands, we

“Stuffed out with big preamble, holy names,

And adjurations of the God in Heaven, felt the greatest confidence possible in the elasticity and capacity of the amount 10 the comfortable surface governmental conscience. Long be- of six hundred and thirty thousand fore Scott took the field and con- square miles, which will sound more summated what Taylor had begun, significantly when we say it is an we had written concerning our area almost equal to that occupied by greediness for conquest. “These Great Britain and Ireland, France, facts are palpable, and they are Spain, Portugal, and Prussia. With written in blood. Our government Texas, it is more than half of the is possessed by a mania for more original territory of Mexico. Or, to territory, and does not scruple to make it still more familiar and forseize it at the cost of war. The midable, its area is sufficient for sixconquest of New Mexico and Cali. teen states as large as Ohio! fornia has become common talk. With this general indication of the No one questions the toughness of extent of our conquests, it becomes the governmental conscience. That a matter of importance to ascertain, conscience hitherto has proved itself as far as possible, the character of as elastic as the stomach of a boa. this immense territory. What are constrictor. It can swallow whole its resources and its present condi. territories to which it has no more tion ? What is the value, now and right than to London or to Paris, prospectively, of a territory for without a grimace of pain. How which all acknowledge we have paid absurd to talk of tenderness of con- a great price? If this country conscience in a government whose ra. tains sixteen states like Ohio, with pacity for conquest is only equalled her amazing fertility, and resources, by that of England !"

which are likely to be developed at Without referring to some ridicu. some future time, then we may be lous facts, which quarrels among the accredited before the world as saprincipal actors have brought to gacious in our greediness to gain light, it is sufficient to state that a it. Or if there are hordes of igno. treaty was signed by Nicholas P. rant barbarians, lorded over by naTrist on the part of the United bobs of uncounted wealth, from States, and three commissioners on whom the thumb screws of avarice the part of Mexico, and this treaty may extort such compensation as

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