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quences, and put it into plainer expres. An inquiry into the nature and tendency of the sions, which heretics might not so
education which the clergy receive in tbe Eng
lish Universities. easily corrupt, pervert, or evade. Was not this reverend zeal? But where The clerical office is of such high iminodesty restrains med from putting all portance to the welfare of mankind, their inventions and explications into
that the minds of those who undertake their creed, the devil persuades men,
it ought to be formed with distinguishthat they being the judgments of godly ed attention, lest even the means of reverend divines, it is almost as much doing good, which they possess in an asif it were in the creed, and, there. eminent degree, should be perverted, fore, whoever dissenteth must be noted
either by ignorance or depravity, to with a black coal, and you must dis.
the propagation of error or vice. For
the ministers of religion cannot remain grace him, and avoid communion with him as a heretic. Hence, is our union, christian knowledge and christian vir
negative characters; the absence of communion, and the peace of the
tue in those who are ordained to teach Church, laid upon cerlain unsearchable mysteries about predestination, the both, becomes a public calamity, which order and object of God's decrees, the opposing to it those powerful princi
allows a rapid increase of evil, by not manner of the Holy Spirit's secret operations on the soul, the nature of ples of the Gospel which are alone able
effectually to check its progress. the will's essential liberty, and its
So much responsibility being attachpower of self-determining, &c. and be
ed to the situation of all entrusted with is scarcely to be accounted a fit mema"
the care of souls, their education ought ber for fraternal communion, who dif
to bear a constant reference to their fers from them herein. Had it not
future employ. Were the interval, inbeen for this one plot, the Christian deed, between leaving an university faith had been kept pure; religion had
and receiving ordination, longer, any been one; the Church had been one;
peculiarity of tuition might seem less and the hearts of Christians had been requisite, time being allowed for plain more one ihan they now are. Had not
theological studies, and the acquisition the devil turned orthodox, he had not of that knowledge which might render made so many true Christians heretics, the discharge of clerical duties most as Epiphanius and others have enrolled beneficial. But in whatever way it be in the black list. Had not the enemy acquired, an acquaintance with divinity of truth and peace got into the chair, is indispensable in a clergyman; no and made so pathetic an oration as to
other acquirements, however valuable inflame the minds of the lovers of in themselves, can supply its place, nor truth to be over zealous for it, and to ought they to be deemed any apology do 100 much, we might have had truth' for its want. and peace to this day. Yea, still, if
The mumerous advantages, which he see any man of experience and the universities afford to the studious, moderation to stand up, to reduce men for acquiring variety of knowledge, rento the ancient simplicity, he presently der them places peculiarly eligible for seems the most zealous for Christ, those who are designed for learned and tells the inexperienced leaders of professions. Extensive libraries filled the flocks, that it is in favour of some with the stores of every science; tutors. heresy that such a man speaks; he is capable of instructing in all departplotting a carnal 'syncretism, and at ments of useful literature; and the subtempting the reconcilement of Christ stantial rewards appropriated to indusand Belial: he is tainted with Popery, try and regularity of conduct, form such or Calvinism, or Arminianism, or an assemblage of motives, inciting whatever may
make him odious with youth to energetic study, as is not to be those he speaks to. O! what the devil found, except among collegiate bodies. hath got by over-doing!"
The concourse also of persons from
every part of the kingdom, whose for many years, and subtract from the modes of thinking and acting are proba- power of devoting any thing to charity, blý much diversified, is very favourable or even of supporting the appearance to the eradication of local prejudices commonly expected from the clergy. and peculiar habits, which are seldom Such evils, it may be asserted, are spared by the freedom of juvenile re. incidental to all academic societies, and proof; and the collision of different cannot be remedied without reviving a sentiments has a tendency to enlarge more rigid discipline than is likely to the mind, inure it to docility, and pre- be endured in these days, when youthis pare it for the business of the world. are distinguished by a premature ripe
But in a numerous society of young ness, and early claim the privileges of men there will be found great diversi. manhood. ty of character. Industry will not ani. But allowing that it would not be mate all, and universal correctness of feasible to new model some of the upiconduct cannot be expected, unless versity statutes, regulating manners, where there is a total absence of temp- which are now obsolete, the most tation to vice. Frequently reason is timid policy alone can suggest that sacrificed to ebriety, and the imagina- idleness, dissipation, and profligacy are tion permanently contaminated by vi
too firmly seated to admit of cure, or cious pleasure far beyond the power
at least of palliation. For the governany ordinary means of purification. And, ment of every college is almost arbiin general, those passions which fill the world with confusion display the wan. bation of the master and other resi
trary, and the tutors, with the appro. tonness of gratuitous mischief amidst dent fellows, may prescribe any line the cloisters of instruction, whenever of study, any mode of conduct withou: the laxity of college discipline yields to
one of those in a state of pupilage darthe outrages of newly acquired liberty. Happily the moderate income of the ing to oppose their authority. By rcgreater part of students, who are des. gularly requiring the presence of all
the students at lectures, making no tined to the Church, will not allow them to pursue the joyous ruin of the more
exception in favour of any order, the wealthy collegians, and riot in the ex. effrontery of idleness would probably travagance of habitual dissipation. Yet be abashed; and by appointing one of so attractive is a life of gayety to the the lectures at the usual time of baccorruption of human nature, that too chanalian revelry, the courses of dis. many, when solicited by strong temp
sipation might be successfully tra
versed. Were constant attendance tation, persuade themselves that there is little hazard in trying the experiment at chapel enforced with the greatest of a single deviation from the line of strictness, and the delinquency of rerectitude, u suspicious that one indul- peated absence followed by public cengence facilitates the way of another, sure, or even, in case of inveterate and that sensual pleasure is the direct transgression, by refusal of testimoenemy to intellectual labour. Deceiv- nials for ordination ; 'were the gates ed in estimating their power over the closed at an early hour, and neither indepraved propensities of the heart, gress nor egress afterwards permitted, they gradually acquiesce in habits of religion might receive more exterior vice, silencing the admonitions of con reverence, and regularity of conduct, science, and forgetting the precepts of at the hours now marked by greatest religion, till, removed from the scene licentiousness, become indispensable, of their folly, solitude possibly may when neglect of public prayers was bring sobriety of thought, and reflec. branded with the punishment of protion produce repentance.
But in this faneness, and nightly rambles were infavourable issue of a bad beginning, variably construed into the projects of generally serious memorials of former lewdness. Such requirements and remisconduct long remain: debts, con- straints ought not to be thought hardtracted without adverting to the time ships by those who profess an intenof payment, often burden the produce' tion of becoming the ministers of that of a scanty curacy or small benefice religion, which uniformly inculcates,
self-denial and mortification of every following observations more particularly carnal propensity. Some discipline is apply, from the days of Sir Isaac New certainly necessary to prevent those ton, mathematics have continually inwho are marked out for preachers of creased in estimation. That they de righteousness from early devoting serve attention, will readily be granted, themselves to the pursuit of worldly without recurring to their eulogium by pleasure, which they profess to have Plato, or their dispraise by Swift. renounced, or from falling into those Those who fully comprehend the elesnares of temptation laid by the subtlements of Euclid, need not the precepts enemy of mankind, against which it is of logic; they must acquire some pretheir duty to guard others. Many in- cision of thought, and a clear mode of deed have loudly praised those of the arranging ideas. Dissipation of mind, clergy, who have divested themselves or vagrancy of imagination, those banes of all professional peculiarity, and ap- of juvenile study, are better remedied peared in no way distinguished, ex. by moderate attention to mathematics, cept by their garb, from other men ;
than by any artificial schemes pro: but the praise should be contemned as posed by the ingenious for fixing the insidious, since it would take from in- thoughts. struction its authority, and from exam
By that part of mixed mathematics ple its influence; for it would render which relates to the laws and operaacquiescence in received opinions the tions of nature, the mind is expanded, test of Christian charity, and consor. and taught to discover order and beauty mity to fashion the practice of virtue. amidst seeming confusion and deforBut it should be the business of edu- mity. The utility of natural philosophy, cation early to implant a stability of in every department of life, is too well Christian principle, which cannot be known at this time, when it claims at moved by the pleas of self-indulgence, least its proper share of attention, to
Yet if this or perverled by the plausibilities of require any elucidation. irreligion ; then might be expected a part of science, explaining the wisdom just knowledge of the clerical charac and power of the Creator, be studied, ter, and an efficient discharge of its must young men, designed for the
ministration of the Gospel, dive into holy functions. There are colleges, which, by pur. What is their use almost in any case ;
the very depths of pure mathematics? suing a spirited line of conduct, and and in particular, what relation have disregarding all petty obstructions to to their schemes of improvement, even
they to theological pursuits? Is the the want of co-operation from parents, Moivre, that the chance of an ancient
midnight oil to be consumed over Du have risen into deserved reputation for manuscript of an epistle being authensobriety, order, and studiousness. The tic may be calculated ? Does all Warsteady exertions of the tutors to pre- ing's most recondite, laboriously generaserve pure manners, and instil Chris- lising works, contain a solitary discovetian principles, have proyed eminently successful; and, under their direc- ry, nay an idea, which a clergyman may tion, the acquisition of knowledge, and ly the time consumed in such studies is the advantages of society, have not wasted. been countervailed by the pride of
To reply that classics and divinity learning or the loss of piety. Their are not neglected, is scarcely admissilabours have redounded to the un- ble; for generally a person earnestly speakable benefit of numerous parish- engaged in the deeper parts of mathees; their names will be had in honour matics seldom turns to other studies, by the generation of the righteous; or, if he do, it is with a relaxed mind and their praise is in heaven.
and a divided attention. Were lectures But objections may be justly raised, indeed given on Quintilian instead of not only against the discipline and go. Tacitus, on Demosthenes instead of vernment of the universities, but their Sophocles, there would be some reastudies. In one of them, to which the sonable expectation that the utility of
an acquaintance with the best canons of it matters not; but it is of great imporcomposition, and the finest models of tance, that they should have clear nopulpit eloquence, might interest, for a tions of their religion, and that their shori time even the most eager candi. conversion should proceed from condate for university honour and college viction; for if that grand source be emolurjent. Beausobre's Introduction wanting, the stream may ebb and tlow to the New Testament demands not by obedient to the influence of the animal depth of research any severe study; it spirits only. is therefore read in haste, and having To blame one mode of education and answered the purpose of a college ex. its consequences is not to recommend amination is hastily forgotten. Lec- another; yet it may be supposed, that tures on the Greek Testament night if mathematics be degraded from their be rendered interesting and highly supremacy, classics niust be exalted. useful.
Both deserve praise; but neither ought Even on the supposition that a com 10 occupy a considerable portion of life, petent knowledge of divinity has been after reason has attained maturity. The obtained by the student to qualify him classical authors justly employ the stufor his clerical office, yet, from having dies of boys at all public schools. Should allotted so large a portion of his time they be neglected in the universities, to mathematics and patural philosophy, the labour of years would be thrown be generally acquires an inordinate love away; for unless knowledge be proof reasoning, which is apt to pervade gressive, it must be retrograde. If the sermons addressed to the most illite- most finished models of classical literarate and ignorant congregations. Of ture were not studied for the laws of what advantage can it be pertinaciously composition and the formation of taste, to argue on controverted points of doc- yet collateral advantages should retrine, and to deduce moral duties from commend them to every clergyman, metaphysical origin, when neither in- Whence is to be derived the higher formation can be given to the under- evidences of the authenticity of the standing, nor warmth imparted to the Christian religion? How are all the arbest afections of the human heart? guments and cavils of a long line of Such sermons insult the wants of a com- sceptics, from Celsus to Gibbon, to be mon audience, and betray the weakness answered? Without an intimate acof youthful knowledge.
quaintance with the languages of It may however be urged, that al. Greece and Rome, the champions of though close reasoning be not adapted the church would fight with weapons to the capacity of the multitude, yet in which had not been prored, and retire many cases, subjects of primary conse- confounded to repair their fault. It is querice to Christianity, being assailed not creditable to the clergy to neglect by infidels, require discussion and proof the fathers of the church. Although for the satisfaction of the more intelli- these venerable men be not free from gent frequenters of the church. tediousness, obscurity, and error; yet
When the opinions of free-thinkers their piety and zeal, their knowledge of are so generally disseminated, not to apostles and apostolical persons, and expose on every proper occasion, their their acquaintance with the usages
of futility, or not to prove that his own re- the early Christians, should entitle ligion is founded on a rock, and cannot them to marked respect and bigh air be moved by the idle blasts of scepti- thority. But now the gloomy Tertul cism, would be unpardonable negli- lian and the lively Augustine are, in gence in a clergyman. His arguments general, alike condemned to the obmay be understood by a few only ; but scure shelves of a bookseller's shop, or those few may retail the knowledge an all-receiving library. Even scandal they have gained, and satisfy the inqui- rakes not into the monkish reveries of ries or dissipate the doubts of the less the vehement Montanist, and curiosity informed. And whether the people be slumbers over the confessions of Hipconvinced immediately from the pulpit po's communicative bishop. Original or through the intercourses of society, works should claim the chief regard of
REMARKS ON A PREVAILING ERROR.
the student in divinity. Knowledge cellent sermon on gentleness, and quarwhich has flowed through many chan- rels violently with his wife on account nels is apt to be polluted, and is liable of a trifling error or omission in doto receive a tinge from the varying mestic economy; or that of him who hues of fashion.
W. B. intersperses his eulogetic detail of a
discourse by his favourite preacher, on
the third commandment, with continual For the Christian Observer.
vain repetitions of the sacred name; or
that of the man, who, amidst the luxuAmong the unscriptural practices with ries which compose his six o'clock which popery has been reproached, is Sunday dinner, derives to himself an that of auricular confession. It is to be accession of complacency, from the feared, that the members of the Romish rapturous admiration with which he Church might find, in some Protestant has been inspired by an eloquent serprofessors, good ground for revenging mon on the duty and advantages of the censure, by charging them with temperance and frugality. what is still worse-merc auricular Chris
It may be rather desirable to lead the tianity.
attention of the reader to some of those Philosophers have disputed concern- instances of inconsistency, between the ing the residence of the soul, whether religious doctrines which men hear and it be the pineal gland, or the brain. approve, and the practices in which they Anatoinists have differed respecting are habitually engaged,which, being less the seat of life; some placing it in the gross and palpable, more easily elude brain, others in the heart. And divines the detection, and are therefore more have laboured hard to ascertain the dangerous. share which the understanding, the With this view it may be useful to affections, and the will, respectively advert to the conduct of certain hearers possess in the cultivation and exercise of Sermons, as it respects their estimaof religious principles.
tion and pursuit of " the world, and the The persons, however, who are above things that are in the world," and the alluded to, and who deserve to be made 'tempers which they exhibit and indulge the subject of a few observations, ap- in their families. pear to have determined for them.
Now how frequently do we observe selves, and as far as respect thein- in those who do not accidentally fall selves, that the life and soul of religion under, but select and attach themselves dwell in the ear; and that the preach- to the ministry of a strict and spiritual ing of the word of God, which some preacher of God's word, an earthlyhave supposed to be calculated to in- mindedness, a conformity to the cusform the understanding, interest the toms and fashions of the world, a fondaffections, and regulate the will, con ness for expensive elegance, ostentacerns no other part of the man, than tious grandeur, and profuse living, all the two little auditory organs, which are diametrically opposed to the instrucsituated on each side of his head. tions which they profess to receive and
An idea so strange might be ridi. approve, and upon which they so seduculed as fanciful, or rejected as uncha- lously attend ! ritable, did not experience continually Were we to mark the apparent zeal multiply the proofs, which convince a and delight, with which such persons Christian Observer, that such an idea is frequent the sanctuary, we might conat least implied in the habitual conduct clude that their only anxiety was reof many who bear the Christian name, specting that house which is not made and attend, even with exemplary regu- with hands, which is eternal, in the healarity, the ordinances of the sanctuary.
But did we follow those same It is unnecessary to dwell on the persons home, we should see many of more gross instances of this auricular them lavishing their attention, time, and Christianity such as that of the man
expense, on the splendid decorations of who goes home on the evening of the a perishable earthly dwelling, and perSabbath, highly delighted with an ex- haps compelling their servants to ex