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that auspicious hour, when such as have " turned many to righteousness shall shine as the stars for ever and ever," and they whose endeavour it has been to call sinners from the error of their ways, shall save their souls alive. "Blessed is that servant, whom his Lord, when he cometh, shall find so doing! Of a truth I say unto you, that he will make him ruler over all that he hath."*
The Speech of Charles James, Lord Bishop of London, in the House if Lords, August 24(A, 18:15, on the Irish Church BUI. Londun: Fellowes". 1835. Pp. 30.
This is one of the most eloquent and powerful speeches which we have had the opportunity of reading for some time. By few men could that destructive « Irish Church Bill" have been more effectually demolished than by the Bibhop of London. His Lordship has torn it limb from limb, and exposed the wretched ligaments employed by Whig ignorance, Whig subtiltv, and Whig destructiveness, to ntford their so-called strength, energy, and usefulness, to the poor Protestant Church in Ireland. Take the method of reasoning adopted by these professed members of an English Protestant Church.
To pacify the Roman Catholics, it will be advisable to extirpate the Protestants: then, as his Lordship observes, ubisoliludinemfacivnt,pucetn appellant.
Make the Protestant Church of Ireland, already too much impoverished, be at the expense of educating the poorer classes; and the nation at large, which is capable of doing it, and which receives all the benefit, be at no charge.
As a proof the Bill would pacify the Roman Catholics of Ireland, take in confirmation, that all past concessions have, without exception, increased their effrontery and their demands.
That the Bill would benefit the peasantry, take in direct contradiction
the opinion of an upright and impartial judge, Mr. Eneas M'Donnel, himself a Roman Catholic.
To raise the tone of civilization and refinement, remove the only vestige that now exists, which is to be found in the parochial Clergy alone, and that in districts for twenty miles together.
Prove the Protestant Church of Ireland to have been most inefficient, by numerous examples, which demonstrate that the Bishops and Clergy have been the only individuals to whom the poor could resort, in an? time of distress; and that they have at all times been most ready to administer every assistance, temporal and spiritual, within their power.
To increase the usefulness of the Clergy, diminish their incomes, i. e. put them upon a level with the poorest of their people, who will love and respect them the more.
Such is only a slight specimen of the detestable manner in which a Whig administration have reasoned for the benefit of the Protestant Church. The Bishop of London has most ably exposed these and twenty more such shreds and patches, and has clearly proved that the whole Bill was nothing but "a paradox from the beginning to the end, and reserved for the month of August, in the year 1835, and the House of Lords, in the Imperial Parliament of Great Britain and Ireland." The speech should be read by every Protestant who loves his Church, that he may be alive to the insidious attacks which are now made upon our Zion. It should be read by every Whig, that he may learn tlie weak and destructive arguments used by his leaders lor accomplishing an object, the consummation of which would be most awful in its consequences. It should be read by every Conservative, in order to cherish those holy principles, in which every lover of his God and of his country is desirous of being established.
The Rite of Confirmation explained. By the Rev. D. I. Eyre, M.A. of Oriel College, Oxford; and Perpetual Curate of Winterbourne, Duntzey, Wilts. Second Edition. London: Parker. 1835. Pp.47. Wk have much pleasure in recommending this excellent little work to the notice of our readers in general, but particularly to that of the Clergy. Our author has so fully explained the nature of, and the authority for, the rite of confirmation, and the practical benefits to be expected by the recipients, that we willingly place this among the best of the tracts we have seen upon the subject. The table of contents will shew the different points illustrated:—
The authority for confirmation from Scripture.
The practice and opinion of the primitive Church respecting it. The benefit to be derived from it. The preparation necessary. Practical addresses on the subject:
1. To those who have been confirmed;
2. To parents; 3. To godfathers and godmothers; 4. To masters and mistresses; 5. To those who are to be confirmed; 0. To Christians in general.
From the above, the nature of the work will be fully seen. We will add, that it is written in a plain and easy style, and may be readily comprehended by the young, for whom it has been more particularly written; and we trust it will have a wide circulation.
Juvenile Sunday Library. Vol. I.
Lives of the Apostles and early
Martyrs of the Church. By the
Author of "The Trial of Skill."
London : Hatchard. 12ino. Pp. 207.
The object of the writer is to provide
for the young "a work at once pious
and entertaining, which shall instruct,
improve, and please, during that inter
mediate period, so difficult of management, which is between childhood, and the opening of maturity." In this object, the authoress of the present volume would appear to have well succeeded in the way in which she has treated the all-interesting subjects which form the present, volume. The lives are given in the form of dialogue, and rendered most pleasing, by the elegance and simplicity of the language in which they are delineated. Each life bears evident marks of great research; and if the succeeding volumes be as interesting as the one we now notice, of which we cannot doubt, the "Juvenile Sunday Library" will be a most valuable acquisition to the sacred literature of the day. The first volume contains the lives of Stephen, Saul of Tarsus, and Andrew.
The Liturgy compared zcith the Bible; or, an Illustration and Confirmation, by Scripture Quotations and References, of such Parts of the Book of Common Prayer, Administration of the Sacraments, and other Rites arid Ceremonies of the Church if England and Ireland, as are not direct Extracts from the Holy Scriptures. By the Rev. H. I. Bailey, Pcrpetuul Curate of Drighlinglon, near Leeds. Vol. 11. London : Hivingtons. 1835. 8vo. Pp. 413. We hail with much pleasure the appearance of the second volume of this most useful work. In our periodical for July, 1833, we offered our warmest commendation to the first volume, nor have we aught to diminish in our praises of the second. The title page sufficiently explains its nature, and we unhesitatingly say that no room deserving the name of a library ought to be without it.
Prayers for Young Children. London:
Hatchard. 1835. Pp. 3G. These prayers are simple, and very good, and if to be read daily are likely to be useful: but we doubt the possibility of young children learning them all. For children, we prefer one good prayer for the morning, and one for the evening. To each of I he prayers in the present little volume is added a suitable hymn, chiefly from Watts.
On The Holy Catholic Church.
Matt. Xvi. 18.
Upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of heU shall not prevail against it.
That one of the objects of our Lord's appearance upon earth was to instruct mankind in that knowledge by which alone they can become wise unto salvation, is evident from the whole course of his ministry. And that this important design might be carried on to the end of time, he gave a commission to his apostles shortly before his glorious ascension, saying, " Go ye and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: teaching them to observe all things, whatsoever I have commanded you: and lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world." This commission being given to the eleven apostles, may be considered as the origin of that church against which our Lord declared the gates of hell should not prevail. It is the object of this discourse to give a brief sketch of the church of Christ, from its foundation until the present time; and a future opportunity will be embraced for directing the attention more particularly to that branch of the Apostolical Church established in these kingdoms. And surely the circumstances of the present times render it imperative upon the ministers of our Church to explain to their respective charges the grounds on which they belong to the Church of England, and to enable them to give an answer to every man that asks them a reason of the hope that is in them: for attempts are now making, under the specious terms of liberality and freedom of opinion, which, however, signify nothing but anarchy and infidelity, to bring the Church of these realms into contempt, that when the bulwark of religion is destroyed, all those restraints may be abrogated by which order and security are at present maintained.
Our Lord having commissioned his apostles to perform the duties which he had previously assisted them in discharging, ascended, in their presence, into heaven. Soon after this bereavement, we find the eleven assembled together, for the purpose of filling up the vacancy which had been caused by the apostasy of Judas ; and Matthias having been chosen, was reckoned with the eleven, and restored them to their original number.
But when converts to Christianity were greatly multiplied, and the Church could reckon its three thousand, and its five thousand members, and when thus, to use the prophetic language of Daniel, the stone began to swell, which was destined in time to become a great mountain, and to fill the whole world, it was plainly impossible that the small company of the apostles, employed as they were in the business of teaching the word, should suffice of themselves to baptize all who would accept their offers of salvation. For this, among other purposes, the formation of another class of ministers, distinct from, but subordinate to themselves, became necessary. The members of this new class were called deacons. They were at first only seven in number; and having been chosen at the suggestion of the apostles, were by them ordained to their office, by the laying of their hands upon them, accompanied by prayer. There were thus two classes of teachers in the Church, apostles and deacons; the first bearing authority over the general flock by the direct word of Christ himself; the last, by a commission from those who were directly authorised to give it. As the limits of the Church began to extend, and believers, instead of dwelling in a body at Jerusalem, were spread over the adjoining regions, the want was felt of another class to superintend the scattered divisions of Christ's flock; to act in some measure as the substitutes of the apostles in their absence, and as their subordinate officers when they were present! This class, which formed the connecting link between the apostles and the deacons, is called in the Scriptures by the names of elders and bishops. The constitution of the Church was then, for the time being, complete. The apostles, in the exercise of their high office, ordained elders and deacons, in whom each congregration recognised the ministers set over them by their Lord and Master in heaven; from whom they received the blessings conveyed in the Holy Sacraments, and to whom they looked for guidance in that course on which they had entered—that christian warfare in which they were engaged.
The Church, under the government of its apostles, elders, and deacons, was, as has been stated, for the time being complete. One thing, however, was wanting to give perpetuity to its constitution, and that was a provision for the supply of ordained ministers, to distribute the gifts of the Spirit to the generations who should live when the apostles themselves, and those who had received ordination at their hands, should have passed away from the scene of their labours. It was, therefore, necessary that the apostles should appoint successors to themselves— persons who should, in consequence, possess power to ordain to any rank in the ministry. They did appoint such persons; but from the altered condition of the Church, and the number of converts in each particular place, they did not give the persons so appointed a general commission; they fixed the residence of each in some city, giving him the peculiar superintendence of the Church in that and the districts adjoining. It was thus that St. Paul appointed Timothy to preside over the Church at Ephesus, and Titus over that in Crete; and the Holy Spirit, by dictating to the apostles those directions to them, which are contained in the epistles bearing their names, gave the fullest and most solemn ratification, not only to their individual appointment, but also to the perpetual establishment of the episcopal order in the Church. What name was originally applied to the office borne by Timothy and Titus as destined successors of the apostles, is not very clear; different words being used at that time indiscriminately to denote the same office. Sometimes from their bearing the character of heavenly messengers, they were called angels, as we find was the case in the seven churches of Asia.
The time, however, arrived, when the apostles were called by their Master to receive the reward of their fidelity. St. John was the last of "the glorious company" who entered into his rest. Then the Church found itself committed, under Heaven, entirely to the charge of the three established orders of its ministers. To each of these a specific title was now given, and applied with greater exactness than before. The title of bishop, which had at first been used indifferently with elder, became the exclusive appellation of the highest class of functionaries, of Clement, Polycarp, Ignatius, &c.
The word elder denoted the second class of ministers; and from the word 7rp£<r/3ur£poc, which is the Greek for elder, we have now formed our English word priest, by which elder is in common use superseded. The intermediate link between irpeafivrtpoQ and priest, was the Saxon word preost. It should be observed, that this word is widely different from the word priest, when used as the translation of the Greek Uptvc, or Latin Saeerdos; the latter usually signifying one that offered sacrifices, the former simply an elder. The third class preserved its original and appropriate name of deacon. Such, my brethren, was the constitution of the Church, when it was first deprived of outward supernatural aid.
As priests and deacons were required for the ministration of the word and sacraments, to the different portions of Christ's flock, the bishops, in exercise of the heavenly gift confided to them, laid hands upon such individuals as they deemed qualified for the proper discharge of the duties entrusted to them; and as vacancies occurred among the angels of the churches, or as additions were required to their number, the existing members of the sacred band consecrated and admitted others to a participation of their privileges, as they had been admitted by the apostles themselves. The gift conferred by their ordination was no longer confirmed by outward demonstration ; but while they reverently complied with all the particulars and forms of these holy rites, as established under the guidance of inspiration by their predecessors, they never doubted the continued fulfilment of the Redeemer's promise or the continued abiding of the Almighty Comforter.
The infant Church was, however, exposed to many and severe trials: persecution after persecution thinning its ranks, and depriving it of those guides, on whom the responsible duties of the ministry were imposed. These sufferings, far from weakening the Church, more closely united believers in the bond of christian unity and peace. The ministerial orders of bishops, priests, and deacons, were invariably maintained; and although sometimes the Church was disturbed by the wild notions of some restless heretic, yet no schism was in her body; for Christians had not then discovered that what was instituted by the apostles, and confirmed by miraculous attestations, was repugnant to the word of God, and offensive to himself. At length, Christianity was allowed a season of repose, and the Church, instead of exciting the jealousy of the secular powers, was openly protected by the Emperor Constantine, who, in the beginning of the fourth century, publicly embraced the religion of Christ.
Branches of the Church had at this time spread themselves throughout all the civilised world, and had even reached the benighted shores of this island. But the world was in a state of profound ignorance, and hence we may account for those corruptions which at an early period manifested themselves in the Church. At first the Bishop of Rome claimed no jurisdiction over other bishops, but merely asserted a priority of rank, in consequence of Rome being the metropolis of the world. He was not, however, long satisfied with this; for in the seventh century