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his taking orders in 1660, from Thomas Bp. of Galloway', who, it seems, did at that time ordain such of the English clergy as came to him, without oaths or subscriptions.* IF those writers supposed, as they seem to have done, that the Dr. who had been a celebrated preacher for many years, remained till then unordained, they were mistaken, for he was ordained by Bp. Hall, before he was twenty years of age. And Mr. Jos. Hill of Rotterdam was positive that he never took any other than Deacon's orders, and never would submit to any other ordination ; for it was his judgment that he was properly ordained to the ministerial office, and that no powers on earth had any right to divide and parcel that out at their pleasure. He was in great reputation at the time of the Restoration. He was one of the Savoy commissioners, and very earnest in his endeavours to get the declaration passed into a law; and had it been accomplished he would have accepted the Deanry that was offered him. He was a man of great learning, judgment, and integrity; of great temper and moderation, and respected by all that knew him. Abp. Usher used to say,
“ He was a voluminous preacher;" not that he was tedious for length, but he had the art of reducing the substance of volumes of divinity into a narrow compass. Mr. Charnock oft represented him as the best collector of sense of any in the age. He was no fomenter of faction, but studious of the public tranquillity. His generous constancy, of mind in resisting the current of popular humour, declared his loyalty to his Divine Master.
He was imprisoned for his nonconforinity, and many ways à sufferer; yet kept up a considerable interest at court, and with men of note. The noble Earl (afterwards Duke) of Bedford, who had been his parishioner at Covent Garden, was his cordial friend to his death; so also was Lord Wharton, and many other persons of considerable quality. He generally had the chair in the meetings of the dissenting ministers of the city, who found the want of his prudence, activity and interest joined together, when he was taken from them. He died Oct. 18, 1677, leaving behind him the general reputation of as excellent a preacher as this city or nation hath produced. Dr. Bates, in his funeral sermon for him,
, says, “ A clear judgment, rich fancy, strong memory, * Burnet's Hist. of his own Times, vol. 1. p. 132.
§ A curious account of a long conversation which he once held with X. Charles II. relating to the Nonconformist ministers, may be seen in a letter of his to Mr. Baxtcr, who lias given it at length in his Life, Part iii. p. 37.
and happy elocution met in him, and were excellently iinproved by diligent study.” [He was endowed with extra.' ordinary knowledge in the scriptures, and in his preaching gave a perspicuous account of the order and dependence of divine truths.His discourses were clear and convincing, so as to be effectual not only to raise a short commotion in the affections, but to make a lasting change in the life. His doctrine was the truth according to godlincss. He did not entertain his hearers with impertinent subtilties, empty notions, intricate disputes, &6. but preached as one who had always before his eyes the glory of God and the salvation of men; both in respect to his matter and his expression, in which he had a singular talent.
Dr. Wm. Harris, in the Memoirs of his life, inentions the following anecdote of him: “ Being to preach before the lord-mayor; the court of aldermen, &c. at St. Paul's, the Dr. chose a subject, in which he had an opportunity of displaying his judgment and learning. He was heard with ada miration and applause by the more intelligent part of the audience. But as he was returning from dinner with the lord mayor in the evening, a poor man following him, pulled him by the sleeve of his gown, and asked him if he were the gentleman that preached before the lord-mayor. He replied, he was.
“ Sir, says he, I came with hopes of getting some good to my soul, but I was greatly disappointed, for I could not understand a great deal of what you said; you were quite above me.” The Dr. replied with tears, " Friend, if I did not give you a sermon, you have given me one, and by the grace of God I will never play the fool to preach before my lord-mayor in such a manner again."}
His style was not exquisitely studied, but far from vulgar meanness. His delivery was natural and free, clear and eloquent, quick and powerful, without any spice of folly, and always suited to the simplicity and majesty of diviné truths. His earnestness was such as might soften the most obdurate spia rits. “I am not speaking (says Dr. Bates) of one whose talent was only in voice, who laboured in the pulpit as if the end of preaching were for the exercise of the body: this man of God was inflamed with an holy zeal, and from thence such ardent expressions broke forth as procured attention and consent in the hearers. He spoke as one who had a living faith within him of divine truths. The sound of words only strikes the ear, but the mind reasons with the mind, and the heart speaks to the heart. He abounded in the work of the VOL. 6 NO. 4.
Lord, preaching with unparalleled assiduity and frequency, yet was always superior to others and equal to himself. In the decline of his life he would not leave his beloved work, the vigour of his inind supporting the weakness of his body. As a Christian, his life was answerable to his doctrine. His resolute contempt of the world secured him from being wrought upon by those low motives which tempt sordid spirits from their duty. His charity was eminent in procuring supplies for others when in mean circumstances himself. But he had great experience of God's fatherly provision, to which his filial confidence was correspondent.
His conversation in his family was holy and exemplary, every day instructing them in their duty from the scriptures. His humility was great. He was deeply affected with the sense of his frailties and unworthiness. He expressed his thoughts to Dr. Bates on this head a little before his death. “ 'Tis infinitely terrible (says he) to appear before God the judge of all, without the protection of the blood of sprinkling that speaks bete ter things than the blood of Abel.” This alone relieved him, and supported his hopes; which was the subject of his last public discourse.
♡ Dr. Calamy relates a singular anecdote of Dr. Manton in respect to the affair of Wallingford-house. He had a suminons to attend the meeting there, but no information as to the object of it, though he feared the worst. He went; but in passing a dark entry, he heard a voice in the room where the meeting was held, repeating with vehemence these words, “ He must down, and he shall down." He clearly distinguished the voice to be Dr. Owen's, and was so much'alarmed that he went away. The next day he found the inatter explained by the dissolution of the parliament, in order to the deposing of Richard Cromwell. This account Mr. Stretton assured Dr. Calamy and others, he had from Dr. Manton himself. Mr. Matthew Barker affirmed that he knew this account to be true ; (and it agrees with what Mr. Barter relates in his Life; who says " that Dr. Owen and his assistants did the main work." Part 1. p. 101. The fact however has been denied.] • Dr. Manton's Farewell Sermon is on Heb. xii. 1. Seeing we are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, &c. It is a useful discourse, and suitable to the occasion, though not very appropriate. The following extract may suffice. “The worthies mentioned in the former chapter, and all the saints of God, recorded as having experienced his
goodness, ST. PETER'S, CHEAP, (R. S.] ROGER DRAKE, D. D. Wood says he was a physician; but he was well known in London as a divine. He was concerned with Mr. Love, and submitted to the mercy of parlia. ment. He was one of the commissioners at the Savoy. Mr. Baxter says, he was a wonder of sincerity and humility; and Dr. Annesley, “ that his writings will be esteemed while there are books in the world, for that stream of piety that runs through them.” He always laid by a tenth part of his income for the poor, before he used any of it himself. His last words were “ Jesus take me, for I am ready."
WORKS. Sacred Chronology.-Two Serm. in Morn. Ex.A Boundary to the Holy Mount; ag. Mr. Humphrey's Free Admission to the Lord's Supper.—The Bar Fixed; in Answer to Mr. H.'s Rejoinder.—Poems on the Deaths of Mr. Jer. Whitaker.—Mr. Ralph Robinson,--and Mr. Richard Vines.
ST. PETER'S, WESTMINSTER ABBEY, John Rowe, M. A. of New Inn Hall, Oxf. Born at Tiverton. He was son of the excellent Mr. John Rowe of Crediton, whose life is published, and affords remarkable memorandums of christian piety, industry, constancy and courage. He continued at Oxford after the university became a garrison, and then was transplanted to Cambridge, but returned afterwards to Oxford, when things were set. tled, and was preferred to a fellowship in Corpus Christi Col. His first public employment in the gospel was at Witney in Oxfordshire, where he preached a lecture with good acceptance and great advantage to the souls of his hearers. There fell out a remarkable providence here, which he mightily iinproved for the conviction of many. Some dissolute persons came to the town to act a play, and had an upper room for the purpose in a private house; where, as they were acting on a market day, the room, being overloaded, fell down, by which several people were killed, and many much hurt. Mr. Rowe, upon this occasion preached and printed three sermons, in order to the improvement of this awful providence; which was the more remarkable, as some of the actors had even dared and defied death, and therein the God of life and death.
Mr. Rowe was for some time a preacher at Tiverton, where he was not without honour, though in his own country. From thence, on the death of Mr. Strong, 1654, he became preacher in the Abbey at Westminster, and pastor of the 5