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lence which was urging you? Your shame, he may have neglected to utVain heart, unused either to examine ter. or deny itself, and unable to endure Again, as to his actions :-the Christhe sight of its own vanity, may form tian being settled in a persuasion that this excuse for all your flattering civi- the love of God, and the love of man

lity ; but the truth is, you are under for his sake, are the only lawful mo{ the power of the love of praise. Chris- tives of action, will be solicitous in

tian benevolence, were that your mo- every step he takes to deny himself to

tive, would often dictate offensive but the love of praise, as well as to the fear · wholesome truths. Is there any thing of shame. He will choose for his com

the knowledge of which may advance pany, not those whose acquaintance your friend's immortal interests? Is niay do him honour in the eyes of the he thoughtless of eternity, ignorant of world, but those by whose help and

God and Christ? You are silent on counsel he will best advance his spiriEt such points. It is your principle nottual interests. He will choose all his

to meddie. It might serve your friend employments on the same principle : to speak plainly to him, but you fear it and if his determination of any matter would not please him. You are wil. has been at all biassed by a regard to

ling to please without serving him ; praise, he will repent of it as sinful, i but to serve without pleasing him, is and watch against it in future ; always 7 quite contrary to all the turn of your keeping it in view, that the ambition of

thoughts. And why? Because it is rising in the world, the common prin· contrary to that love of praise which ciple of worldly men, must be utterly fills your corrupted heart.

You are

disallowed by the Christian. In short, c. convicted thus both of the love of he chooses that society, that situation, · praise, and of a world of evil you are that profession and employment, not

causing by it; for you dare not speak by which his pride may be gratified or

an unpleasant though salutary truth. his name be distinguished, but that by : You dare not do that which may make which he thinks he may best promote s you an instrument of conveying to the glory of God and the good of his your friend immortal life, notwith fellow creatures.

S. P. standing all your boasted kindness: but you can flatter and compliment CLERICAL LUCUBRATIONS, No. I. him at the expense of integrity and truth, and at the expense of feeding his vanily, that your own also

“ We exhort you in the name of our Lord Je. may be

sus Christ, that you have in remembrance nourished.

into how high a dignity, and to how weighty The description which has been giv an office and charge, ye are called.”-ORen will best shew how a Christian will DINATION SERVICE. deny himself on the points alluded to. The office of a Christian Minister is His words, instead of being dictated by unquestionably the most exalted situavanity, will be always with grace, sea

tion to which the niind of man can assoned with the sale of some useful if pire. If it be regarded in its absolute not religious principle. He will try to and intrinsical character, it will appear please all men, indeed, but then it will to possess every thing which can invest be for their good to edification. He the person who fills it with solemnity will speak the truth, though its strict- and importance. The man who obeys ness should offend; but he will speak it the call of Providence in entering upon in love, it being love which dictates even such a condition, receives a dispensa. the harshest thing he says. He has the tion to which the truest dignity is atsame disposition as other men 10 flat- tached. He is made, in a peculiar ter and court flattery; but he will be sense, the servant of God, and embark

constantly denying it : and he will re. ed in a cause which involves the glory l pent day by day of the flattering words of his grace; he becomes an organ

which may slip from him, or of the through which the will of the Almighty wholesome words which, through false is communicated to the moral and in

THE CLERICAL

ON THE EXCELLENCE OF

OFFICE.

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telligent part of his creation. He has cated, by surrounding him with limits indeed no original matters of revelation which he cannot transgress. By proto impart, no new and hitherto undis. visions which are incorporated with covered truths to divulge; but he has the laws of the land, he incurs certain to deliver a recorded message, to en- disabilities in consequence of ordinaforce a prescribed law, and to exhibit, tion. From the moment that he subdeclare, and expound, the written and mits to it, he is dispossessed of rights published statutes of the Most High. which he can never recover', and unitIn acting according to his instructions, ed to a class from which he can never he is empowered to take the highest withdraw. The deprivation he suffers, ground; and to magnify his office by as well as the compensation he receives, delivering his commission in the name are severally of such a nature, as toshow of the Lord. The mild and beneficent the designof the state in the steps which spirit of the gospel throws an amiable it has taken. They indicate the pecugrace round this pre-eminence; and liar veneration with which his office is commends him to the world under the regarded, and the broad line of separadignified yet acceptable character of tion which it is intended to draw bethe Minister of Reconcilation and the tween him and others. And in this Messenger of Peace. The infirmities respect the regulations of the state find of nature, in which he must ever par- a decided support in the public senti. ticipate with those whom he instructs, ment. Men of loose principles and constitute no objection to the reasoning dissolute lives are not insensible of its employed. The panegyric which has force. They immediately see the imbeen drawn belongs to the condition propriety of any approach, in a person and not to the man. Should the party of the sacred order, to a character like who engages in it be found unequal to their own. Indeed the indignation exits duties, or faithless to its interests, pressed against secular employments, neither his incompetency nor his trea- worldly ambition, or fashionable amusechery will prove, that what has been ments, in this description of men, is so advanced is not strictly true. He may much homage paid to the office they disgrace himself; and excite prejudice sustain ; and the Ministers of Religion against the trust he has abused, in may consider themselves as not a little weak minds or depraved hearts: but flattered by that distinction, which renthe wise and good will know how to ders actions immoral in them that would separate the individual from the minis- be regarded as innocent in the rest of ter, and to distinguish between the mankind. vicious hireling and the pastor after To these considerations must be God's own heart.

added, the consequences which depend The clerical office is further enno- upon the exercise of the Clerical Probled by that regulation which has ren- fession. As an instrument, under Prodered it'at once distinct and indelible. vidence, of removing blindness from There is something which expresses the understanding aud hardness from the reputed importance of this station, the heart, and thereby making way for in that act by which the individual who that grace which brings salvation, this enters upon it separates himself, and office is entitled to peculiar respect. becomes legally separated from the Its preponderance, in such a view, over mass of his secular brethren. Con- other conditions of honour and usefulscious, as it should seem, of that sanc ress must be estimated by the relative tity which belongs to a steward of value of things seen and things unseen, the mysteries of God," he devotes him- of things temporal and things eternal. self by a public ceremony, in which the Patriotism has many claims to our hochief authority of the state may be con. mage, but piety more; and the man sidered as supporting a part, to the va who has saved a falling state appears rious and interesting duties of his pro- considerable, only till he is placed befession. This distinction also, it must side him who has saved a perishing soul. be observed, the legislature has incul. That immortal substance for which

Christ died, and for which every faith In anticipating the condition upon ful pastor labours, has a value which which he is to enter, he will be abashno human calculation can reach; and ed at the thought of his pretensions to

he who sustains its awful functions ac- such a distinction, nor dare to proceed Iquires, in that capacity, a degree of im- without a large measure of fear and

portance proportioned to those mighty trembling. He will look forward with issues which depend upon his minis- apprehension to the course of his mintration.

istry; and dread, lest spiritual pride, It should not at the same time be worldly-mindedness, or carnal timidity, forgotten, that so far as the temporal should lead him to sully the purity, interests of mankind can be meliorat- abuse the privileges, or compromise ed, the clerical office seeks that melio- the duties, of so important a station. ration,-peace, sobriety and decorum, Under this sense of his inadequacy, and social union and civil subordination; these forebodings of his infirmity, he in a word, private integrity and public will find relief and direction in falling virtue are among the duties to which prostrate before the Great Head of the the disciple of Christ must attend in Church; and seeking his qualifications, his way to eternal life. The preacher as Paul sought his "Lord, what wilt therefore finds it no inconsiderable thou have me to do?" part of his official employment, to Nor is it only in the contemplation strengthen the bonds of political and of this profession that such views should moral obligation; and thus the office govern the mind: the same sentiments which he bears is enobled by beautify. should accompany the minister through ing the face of society upon earth, the whole of his clerical career. The while it is forming a community for functions which he exercises must not the kingdom of heaven.

be regarded as less solemn, because The candidate for a profession thus they are more familiar. Still the dignified by intrinsical excellence, pub- place on which he stands is holy lic distinction, and moral importance, ground; still those rites, which he so should deeply revolve the nature of frequently performs, are sanctified that office to which he aspires. He means for sovereign ends, and symshould contemplate the Christian priest- bols of great and awful realities. That hood in all the variety of its relations these impressions may be encouraged, and requirements. He should consi. he will find it expedient to have in reder its connection respectively with membrance, “unto how high a digniGod and man, and the honour which it ty, and to how weighty an office and derives from both. He should view it charge," he has been called. By rein its subordination to Christ, the freshing his recollection with those Apostle and High Priest of the pro- views under which he once regarded fession; and in its dependence upon the duties of his profession, he will esthe Spirit, under whose ministration it cape that formality which a rotation of ranks. In thus regarding the dignity, performances is too apt to produce, he will, as a consequence, be led to see and rise to the true tone and spirit of the responsibility, of this calling. If his employment. Thus will those conconscience have had its influence in siderations, which might seem likely the election which he has made, he will to infiate him, in reality humble and not have decided upon a question of quicken him. He will find motives such moment to himself and others for personal self-abasement in those

without the most serious and self-in- very circumstances which give him an i quiring deliberation. If his views be official distinction; and, awakened to

enlightened and pure, he will have con- diligence by a thousand incentives consulted his heart upon the sacrifices he nected with the solemnity of his stamust make, the diligence he must ex- tion, he will always abound in the work, ercise, the humility he must practise, till he finally enter into the joy, of his anet the judgment he must endure. Lord.

C. F.

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ARTICLES OF RELIGION CONSIDERED.

THE REASONABLE ESS OF SUBSCRIPTION TO rived from Scripture, and conformable

to reason. These are the principles ALL rational Protestants, of every esta. upon which those of my sect agree, and blished church or sect, agree in con- by our firm adherence to them we are sidering Scripture as the sole rule of distinguished from every other commufaith; in aliowing to the laity the free nity of Christians. These principles use of i

in their native tongue ; and inform that Creed we profess in our pubteaching them that it is their duty to lic worship; our prayers, whether liturread it with reverence and attention, and gical, or extemporaneous, must be ofto interpret it according to their own fered up in conformity to this Creed; private judgment; certainly, exercising our youth must be educated in it; our that judgment with all the caution and poor and ignorant instructed in it; every deliberation which the importance of member of our community must have the subject demands, and with a due re- these salutary truths frequently impressgard to their own measure of capacity ed upon his mind. This is, we think, and knowledge.

the only true interpretation of the sacred It has been very unjustly thought, Scriptures. It is therefore the Gospel that creeds and confessions of faith, you must preach. Are you a sincere particularly the subscription which the believer of it? To this question, which Church of England requires to her the Demandant has certainly a right to Thirty-nine Articles and Liturgy, are propose, the Respondent ought to reply inconsistent with this great Protestant with openness and truth. His well. principle; but this prejudice seems to grounded belief of this system (as far as have arisen entirely from mistaking the his judgment and learning extend) is the nature of subscription.

primary and most essential qualification In order fully to explain the idea for that office to which he voluntarily which I enteriain of it, I shall endeavour aspires. The terms of conformity are to illustrato it, by extending it farther too lax, when the question so proposed, than the Church of England or any es. does not comprise all that is necessary tablished church, to every Protestant to be answered; and they are too rigid, community : for a subscription to cer when it comprises more. The best critain articles, or something equivalent to terion of latitude appears to me drawn it, appears to me essential to the minis- by those principles which justify sepatry of the divine word in every Christian ration from an established church. congregation.

If it be a lawful ground of dissent, In this subscription there are two par- that I cannot believe the Creeds of the ties. The party who requires subscrip- Church; that I must, by my attendance tion; the party who is called upon to there, abjure what appears to me the subscribe.

doctrine of Scripture, and profess what The first party may be supposed in I think has no foundation in it; that I this country to be, either the national must offer up prayers, which, I am conChurch of England and Ireland united, vinced, cannot be acceptable to God;the national Church of Scotland, a sepa- and these must be acknowledged to be rate congregation in England or Ireland justifiable causes of separation ;-the professing the same faith as the Church church herself cannot be deemed too! of Scotland, .or an Episcopal Congre- rigid, if she requires, that those persons gation in Scotland, or an independent shall not be her ministers, who cannot Christian Assembly where perhaps only conscientiously be even her lay.commutwo or three may meet together in sup- nicants. port of those doctrines, which alone they If the disciples of Dr. Priestley were esteem scriptural and pure.

to form a religious community adoptThe second party is the person who ing his peculiar principles, could they offers himself to be a minister of this permit their minister to be continually Christian community. The former party preaching to them the liberty of human may be stiled the Demandant; the latter actions, the immateriality of the soul, the Respondent. The Demandant says, the divine inspiration of Scripture, the I think that certain principles are de- equal authority of the whole sacred

Canon, the doctrines of justification and resource, the most distant approach to sanctification, the redemption, and the perfection. · Holy Trinity ? They must require their If all mankind be not true Christians, minister to abjure all these tenets: and if our nation be not, if the majority of is it less necessary, or more unreasona our fellow citizens, or the ruling part ble, that the Church shall require from of them, refuse to listen to the voice of her ministers an explicit declaration of truth; the church may still remain, may their firm belief in them?

be still illumined by the glorious splenIn all speculations upon government, dour of evangelical light, and floucivil or ecclesiastical, we should place rish in truth and love, whether under before our view the highest model of the protection of wise laws respecting perfection, and consider how far we may the religious rights of individuals, or in hope by any practicable measure to ap- the deserts and caverns to which the proach towards it.

heathen persecutors drove the primitive We must all wish, that the whole Christians, or in the valleys of Piedmont, world were Christians, and that every or in regions the most desolate and obdisciple of our blessed Saviour receiv- scure: for the smallest congregation, ed the Gospel in its utmost purity ; ne- when every error is carefully excluded, ver misinterpreting the true meaning is a fairer representative of the Church of Scripture; never adding to it, nor of Christ, than the Roman empire was diminishing from it.

when Christianity was assimilated to Whatever distinctions might still pre- Paganism, and the religion of Constanvail of local jurisdiction, of nation, or ting was only nominally adopted by a human legislature ; whatever shades of great part of his subjects. This was difference, climate or other circumstan- one melancholy source of the corrupces might occasion in external forms of tions which have overwhelmed our Holy worship or discipline; the religion of Faith, nor can it ever be preserved in mankind would be the same.

its purity, until every consideration bc This, with respect to our present sacrificed at the throne of truth. state, is that kingdom of Christ which, It will be said, “that upon this system we pray, may come. This is the highest there must be innumerable and evermodel of perfection: but we approach changing sects, for the opinions of men towards it, if a whole nation can be of are infinite and variable. Christianity one mind, and profess the true faith, not can never be professed in its highest hypocritically, but sincerely, without purity, until full freedom shall be allowmental equivocation or reserve. ed to impartial inquiry, and universal

If this degree of perfection be unat. charity be established upon the firm batainable, the next object we should have sis of that unbounded tolerance, which in view is, that the majority of the nation, will annihilate all subscriptions, all tests, or the most enlightened part of it, should all creeds and confessions of faith.” uphold the right religion, and that the The objection, when carried to the magistrate should maintain truth by law. extent to which it naturally leads, must

This is the system of an establish- subvert every established church, every ment, which it is the duty of every su- principle of ccclesiastical community or preme governor to support, as far as is discipline, public worship, and all ihat consistent with the justice due to indi- acquiescence in she judgment of others, viduals, or to any religious associations which connects society, and is equally by which a number of those individuals essential to the government of families may choose to be united. If there are as of states. Free inquiry cannot prosects in a country, or if they should arise duce its proper fruits, unless the mind from that free inquiry which breathes of the inquirer be duly prepared by the true spirit of protestantism as well previous knowledge, well tutored in as of philosophy, and they can be per- habits of reasoning, and devoid of all mitted with safety to the state, they have prejudice and passion. How few among a right to toleration ; for the forming a the sons of men have these qualificaprivate religious community is the last tions! And are the common duties of Christ. Obsery. No, 4.

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