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or climate, profess his religion, and God, and the honour and interests eit hear his sacred name.
There is, of his church. What a happiness des
indeed, a true church of the Re- is it to believe that, even where reles
deemer, consisting of those alone ligion is at the lowest ebb, some Their
who really believe the Gospel, such individuals may be discovered!
and love and serve him. But these that some are to be found faithful and
are often wholly unknown to their among the faithless, devout among
ship the Saviour of sinners amidst the irresolute, true to the banner of - his
the snows of Lapland, or beneath their crucified Lord, while so many
out secret prayer from the bed of “ The Sower of this good seed," eld.
a hospital, or the innermost dun- says our Lord, is "the Son of Man;"
unknown to men, they are well well as God; and who, in this mystheir
known to the Divine Master whom terious character, presides over the thei
they serve. He regards them as the church in heaven and earth. He truth
sheep of his flock; he calls them by sows the seed" of eternal truth : -n the
name; he goes before them; he He calls the believer from among ment ,
leads them by fountains of living the unconverted : He touches the
water ; he gives unto them eternal conscience, affects the heart, cons pre
life, and they shall never perish, trouls the will, and forms the whole te be
nor shall any pluck them out of his character : He stamps the fallen Enking
hand. But this is not the church man with his own sacred image; and,
to which the expression “the king. having taken him from amidst the
nominal, follower of the Cross. sleep are meant, says our Lord,
" the children of the wicked one.” seed,” are meant, says our Lord, • They are not all Israel," the " the children of the kingdom.” Apostle tells us, "who are of Israel; The figurative expression, “ seed," neither because they are the seed is not here used, as it often is in of Abraham, are they all children of Scripture, for the word of God, but the promise.” And so in the church for the people of God; for those of Christ, in every age; they are whom we have just spoken of as not all Christians who bear the
the real invisible church name of Christian. The waters of of Christ. They are often described baptism may have been sprinkled in Scripture under similar images ; upon a child, without its being aš branches of the heavenly vine washed from its sinfulness. The as trees, the planting of the Lord cross may be stamped upon the trees planted by the rivers of water, forehead, without its being stamped which bring forth their fruit in due on the heart. The bread and wine
All these images most may have been administered in the aptly describe those whom the Lord's Supper, and yet the soul be Saviour has rescued from the wil- destitute of the bread and water of derness of the world, -- bas ga- life. Every Christian kingdon, pathered into his own garden,-has rish, and congregation, is made up watered and cherished, from day to partly of the sincere, the contrite, day, by the dews of his grace, and the devout; and partly of the watched with his eye, and guarded mere professor of Christianity, the by his hand; and who are daily presumptuous usurper of the privi, bringing forth fruit to the glory of leges of the servants of God. And CHRIST. OBSERV. No. 327.
ares of eacher *ter of th the
“ the good
eneral joldet ose to
observe the awful description given of
But consider the next statement such persons by our Lord : “ They made in the text, as to the misare the children of the wicked one;" chievous agency of the devil in the the offspring of the devil. Their visible church. When the servants evil passions, and tempers, and prin- of the householder said, “Sir, didst ciples, and tastes, are so many fires thou not sow good seed in thy field? lighted up, as it were, in hell. If from whence then hath ittares ?" the the ministers of Christ express even
enemy hath done a doubt of the eternal happiness of this.” And that enemy is interpretthe impenitent and unconverted, ed by our Lord to mean the devil. of the man whose religion is little He it is who corrupts the professors better than a shadow, they have to of the religion of Jesus Christ; who encounter the charge of uncharita- substitutes nominal for real religion; bleness. What, then, is to explain the shadow for the substance; the the language of the meek and lowly form for the power ; ceremonies for Saviour ? If such persons are, as he principles; talking for doing; the calls them, the children of the devil, outside badge of Christianity for the does not humanity demand that religion of the inmost soul. And they should be told their real cir- who can wonder that the great cumstances; should be arrested on
enemy of souls should be thus the brink of destruction; pointed anxious to sow tares on the soil of to the dark cloud which hangs over the church? What is so hateful to them, and warned of the coming God, so painful to his real servants, ruin ? Let those consider more so injurious to the Gospel, so ruinous carefully the language of our Lord, to the offender, as profession withwho boast of the independence of out principle, as “naming the name the man who has cast off the re- of Christ without departing from straints of religion. While remain- iniquity ?” Oh
the great ing in their present state, the Sa- Householder of the Christian family viour describes them as children of shield his church from that worst the devil : they are under his guid- enemy-a false friend! and may ance and controul; he holds them every member of that family keep in his chain; he takes them captives in mind that whenever he sleeps at his will; their own will, without there is an enemy ready to sow which he could have no power over tares among the wheat; and may them, yielding without a struggle to we resist the devil, that he may his devices. He fixes their daily flee from us! task, he assigns their peculiar office; Look next at the cause stated in the image they reflect is his; the the text, on account of which the family to which they belong is his. punishment of the wicked is delayFor a little while the mercy of God ed in this world. It is said in the has withheld them from the last parable, that when the servants consequence
of that disastrous con of the householder said that the field nexion : but how long shall the was sowed with tares, they said, child of destruction be detained “Wilt thou that we go and gather from his last abode? How long them up? but he said, Nay, lest shall the gate of mercy be kept while ye gather up the tares, je open? How long shall the voice root up also the wheat with them." of the Saviour be heard, “Come How truly is this in the spirit of unto me, and ye shall find rest ? " the tender Master whoni we serve! How long shall the impenitent be How precious are the souls of his permitted to dwell in the region of people in his sight! How does he hope and of possible repentance, spare the guilty, at least for a time, instead of sinking into the pit whose rather than pluck up the wheat with "smoke ascendeth for ever and the tares. But let this passage ever?”
lead the careless and impenitent to
a solemn consideration of their ac on account of the church of Christ, tual circumstances. The cities of shall awake to "everlasting shame the plain could not be destroyed till and contempt.” In the great harLot was removed from them ; but vest of souls, they shall be cut down when he was removed, the tempest and cast into the furnace of fire. of fire descended. And thus the And thousands, on the contrary, prayers of the penitent and believing whom no eye has discovered upon ever stand between the infliction of earth, or who have been recognized the just anger of God, and a guilty only as sufferers in the cause of the world. Let the church of the Re- Gospel, as the objects of worldly deemer be complete, and the storm contempt and persecution, shall will fall. Is, then, any one halting arise from the chambers of the between two opinions, instead of grave, shall be fixed as suns in the giving himself, hand and heart, to firmament of glory, and shine in God? Let him tremble to think of eternal brightness. What more need the slight barrier which stands be. we add for the consolation and suptween him and destruction. There port of such persons ? Already they is but a step or a breath between the are adopted into the family of God; sinner and eternity - and what an now," says the Apostle, « are we eternity! Is this a state, then, in the sons of God;" and soon they which to trifle or to delay? Ought shall be admitted to the kingdom of not the language of such an one to their Father. That kingdom is their be that of the sinking disciples, Father's house. Thither has their * Save, Lord, or we perish?" Redeemer already gone to "prepare
But let us pass on to the last a place for them;" and when he stage of this history. The master "comes again, he shall receive them of the field, when he has checked unto himself; that, where he is, the well-intended but rash zeal of there they may be also." And will his servants, in wishing to destroy you not wait with patience for such the tares, immediately adds, "Let a change? Will you not redouble both grow together until the harvest; your holy labours and supplications, and in the time of harvest I will say for the possession of such an inheto the reapers, Gather together, first ritance? Will you not esteem all the tares, and bind them in bundles the evils of life as insignificant, if to burn them ; but gather the wheat only you " may win
Christ, and be barn." Our Lord thus ex- found in him?" Shall it not be plains the passage: “The harvest seen by your meekness in adversity, is the end of the world, and the your calmness' under reproach or reapers are the angels : as therefore injury, your vigorous discharge of the tares are gathered and burned in every duty, your comparative indifthe fire, so shall it be in the end of ference to the good things of this this world. The Son of Man shall life, -- that you have your portion send forth his angels; and they shall and heart in a better? gather out of his kingdom all things not, amidst every trial and disapthat offend, and those which do ini- pointment, adopt the glowing lanquity; and shall cast them into a guage of the Prophet : “ Although furnace of fire : there shall be wail- the fig-tree shall not blossom, neiing and gnashing of teeth. Then ther shall fruit be in the vines, the shall the righteous shine forth as the labour of the olive shall fail, and sun in the kingdom of their Father," the fields shall yield no meat, the These words need no interpretation. flock shall be cut off from the fold, But how solemn is the scene which and there shall be no herd in the they present to us! Thousands who stalls; yet I will rejoice in the have sunk to the grave in a state Lord, I will joy in the God of my of unpardoned sinfulness, and who, salvation." long spared, not for themselves but
of God ? Not all the inhabitants of WHEREFORE SERVỆTH THE LAW? Christendom; not the lawless and
disobedient, against these the law Tothe Editorofthe Christian Observer. may still be used lawfully; and if it
justly alarm them and make them In reference to the subject which your earnestly inquire, " What must I do correspondent Clemens has taken to be saved ?" and bring them to the up, “the law as our schoolmaster Saviour, and to the true baptism, to bring us unto Christ," I venture the “ answer of a good conscience to offer the following thoughts. towards God by the resurrection of
The Apostle's argument, I admit, Jesus Christ,” to a death unto sin applies in its fullest sense to the and a new birth unto righteousness, state of a Jew before and after em- whereby they are made children of bracing the Gospel, and would ap- grace, and children of God by faith pear to such a person, accquainted in Christ Jesus, it will have been a as he would be with the whole Law good schoolmaster; for it will have of Moses, most convincing and brought them to Christ, and they beautiful. But has it, therefore, no are then no longer under a school. meaning to us? Is not our nature master, for the law is not made for prone to fall into the errors of the a righteous man. Galatians; and does it not, there Such is the use of the moral law fore, require a strong and standing to persons baptized in infancy, but protest against them, such as the who have grown up in practical Apostle has furnished in his Epistle heathenism. Let us now apply it to to that church?
those who trust in outward obser“ Wherefore then serveth the vances and a partial obedience to its Law ?" Before we answer this ques. requisitions, whether Jews, Roman tion we must observe, that the Apostle Catholics, or nominal Protestants. was not accustomed to our divisions All these frame to themselves a law of ceremonial and moral, but spoke of works ceremonial and moral by of the whole Law, including both which they hope to be justified; codes; and so far from adverting these are worldly, often covetous, more peculiarly, as Limborch sup- and opposers of the Gospel of Christ. poses, to the ceremonies, the types Such persons we must treat as St. of Christ, many passages would im Paul treated the Galatians; we ply that he had the Moral Law more must shew them the inefficacy of especially in view; as, for instance, outward ordinances, and press the the following :-“The law is not of spirituality of the law; and if we faith, but the man that doeth these can convince them of sin by the law, things shall live in them: it was and if they then cry out with the added because of transgressions, Apostle, “o wretched man that I that the offence might abound : itam! who shall deliver me from the is the strength of sin: by it is the body of this death ?”—and like him knowledge of sin : for the Scripture learn to rejoice in God through hath concluded all under sin, that Jesus Christ; the law is good to the promise by faith of Jesus Christ them, for they would not have might be given to them that believe. known sin but by the law. Would Wherefore, the law was our school- not the law be to such, a schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ, that master to bring them to Christ, that we might be justified by faith. But they might be justified by faith ? after that faith is come we are no St. Paul was addressing the very longer under a schoolmaster, for ye same description of persons that miare all the children of God by faith nisters of the Church of England in Christ Jesus.” Who are not un- usually address; not Jews nor Header a schoolmaster? Who are jus- thens, but nominal Christians, baptified by faith? Who are children tized into the name of Christ, butun
I do o the
ience on of o sin sness, en of
faith cena hare
they chool dle for
7, but ctical
to its oman fants
enlightened as to the true character the interest which it has excited in of his religion, and practically re- my own mind, as by a sense of jusmoved from the faith of the Gospel tice to the cause in which his Lordto a system of works gleaned out of ship is so zealously engaged, to the Jewish law, or elsewhere, and request your insertion of the followgrafted on the profession of Chris- ing extracts from it, as containing tianity. We cannot be
there some of the last results of his Lordfore, in bringing the whole Epistle ship's learned investigation of the before those who are under such an subject. Those parts of the treatise error, as Luther did against the which are already out of the press, Roman Catholics; and a mighty are distinguished by that extent of weapon it was in his hands for pull- learning and calmness of manner, ing down their strong holds, and as well as piety of sentiment, which bringing every thought into captivity were to be expected from the chato the obedience of Christ.
racter of this eminent and devout I will not stay to defend the con- prelate. His Lordship remarks: sistency of a minister of the Church « The consistency of the Epistle of England addressing many as with the Gospel of St. John is the under the law, and urging them first general ground of evidence for de novo to come to Christ, though I the verse. In every part of the have no doubt that it is consistent: Epistle, both doctrinal and moral, nor do I differ from Clemens in all there is an evident reference to the points, but rather approve highly of Gospel in the use of the same printhe latter part of his paper. I will ciples of faith and charity, the same only offer a plain practical answer to declaration of the Divinity of Christ his question, Is the Law our school as the Word, the Son of God, the master ? Many persons may say, same appeal to the threefold testi“ We have experienced a great mony of the Father, the Son, and change in ourselves, and witnessed the Holy Spirit, in proof of that it with pleasure in others. But how doctrine; and the same three eviwas it effected ? By the Law and dences of his death, and therefore of the Gospel; the Law convincing us his coming in the flesh.” of sin, and thus inclining us to look The consistency of the passage to Christ, who delivered us from the with the prevailing doctrine of the curse of the law, being made a curse primitive church is another general for us. Wherefore the Law was our ground of evidence. How the schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ primitive church understood the that we might be justified by faith.” unity of the three Divine persons,
N. is succinctly expressed by Athena
goras, a father of the second century,
in his Legatio pro Christianis, p.38, THE BISHOP OF SALISBURY ON ed. Dechair. 1 JOHN v. 7.
“ The Father and the Son,” he
says, “ being one; the Father being Tothe Editorofthe Christian Observer. in the Son, and the Son in the
Father, by the unity and power of In your February Number of last the Spirit.” There is another reyear you gave to your readers a markable
of the same brief introduction to a work about learned Father, expressing that the to be published by the venerable great object of a Christian in his and learned Bishop of Salisbury, in search after truth is to know what reply to Crito Cantabrigiensis on is the union of the Son with the the celebrated text, 1 John v. 7. I Father, what the communion of have lately had an opportunity of the Father with the Son, what the perusing a further portion of that Spirit (what that of the Spirit), what work; and I am induced, as well by the unity of persons so differing in