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bear the name of Christ to Gentile of glory? Who will say, that Judas nations ? But if the conduct of did not choose to betray Christ; or good men is truly virtuous and that Peter did not choose to deny praise-worthy in its own nature, him? Such an assertion would be notwithstanding the divine decree; contrary to common sense. Every why may not the conduct of wicka
one is conscious of choosing to do ed men be vicious and blame- whatever he does do. But whenworthy in its own nature, notwith
ever any person acts of choice, it standing the Divine decree? Who always supposes that he has power will say, that the lying spirit, or ability to do differently." And which was fore-ordained and sent this power to do differently, is not into the mouths of all Ahab's pro- destroyed by any divine decree. phets, was not a lying spirit, be- | Those, who act of choice, are cercause of the Divine decree? Such tainly under no compulsion. Choice an assertion would be perfectly is the very opposite of compulsion. absurd and ridiculous. The wick - Judas was not compelled to betray ed conduct of mankind, then, is his Lord; nor was Peter compelled evil in its own nature; and its quals to deny him. Hence, they both ity can never be destroyed by any certainly had power to do differentdecree or fore-ordination whatever. Jy. But still their conduct was But whatever is morally evil, in decreed and foretold. It is a dicits own nature, always implies tate of common sense, that iranguilt. And whatever implies guilt, kind act freely in all their conduct. renders it absolutely certain that But when mankind choose to conthe guilty person has no excuse for duct wickedly, and consequently, his conduct. For no person can are able to conduct otherwise ; justly be considered and treated
what excuse can they offer for their as guilty, who has any just or rea- sinful conduct? What excuse could sonable excuse for his moral con- the Jews offer for their wicked dict.
conduct, in crucifying the Son of 2. The decrees of God do not God; though it is expressly dedestroy the free agency of man- clared that they fulfilled the Dikind. Free agency consists in vine purposes? It is a demonstrachoosing This is all the free ble fact, and often has been demonagency of which we are able to strated, that God has fore-ordained conceive. No one can desire to whatsoever comes to pass: and it be any more free, than to act of is a demonstrable fact, and often choice. This is all the free agen- has been demonstrated, that-manсу there is, or can be, in any being kind act freely in all their conwhatever. It is all the free agency duct; and consequently, have no that God possesses. He acts vol- excuse for any sinful action, but untarily, and is, therefore, a free are altogether blame-worthy. agent; and mankind act voluntari- 3. The holy and wise God conly; and are, therefore, free agents. demns mankind for their wicked We cannot conceive of any moral conduct. He threatens the transbeing, who does not act of choice. gressor with eternal destruction. Now, in order for the decrees of He says, 6 Wo unto the wicked! God to destroy the free agency of it shall be ill with him; for the remankind, they must prevent their ward of his hands shall be given choosing. But this is contrary to him.” And God has actually punfact. Who will say, that the Jews | ished thousands of incorrigible and Gentiles did not choose to do sinners for their wicked conduct. as they did, in crucifying the Lord But if we say that the Divine de
crees afford mankind an excuse for declared to his face, that he would their wicked conduct; we impeach betray him. But, after the comthe Divine character. We virtu- mission of this horrible crime, Jually charge God with injustice and das came and cast down the thirty cruelty. * But, who art thou, pieces of silver in the temple, and O man, that repliest against God?” said, “ I have sinned, in that I Who will rise up, and urge, that have betrayed the innocent blood.” God condemns and punishes the Peter had been informed of the wicked, while yet they have a rea- Divine purposes, that he should sonable excuse for their conduct? surely deny his Lord. But when This is the language of rebellion. the deed was done, his conscience It is bringing the highest charges smote him, 6 and he went out and against the Sovereign of the uni- wept bitterly." The Jews, also, verse. We may add,
were pricked in their hearts, at the 4. That mankind have frequent sermon of Peter, on the day of ly condemned themselves for their Pentecost, though he told them wicked conduct: notwithstanding plainly, that they had fulfilled the the Divine decrees, Pharaoh knew Divine decrees in crucifying the the Divine purposes respecting him- Son of God. Thus the consciences self; for God told him, that he had of mankind have condemned them in very deed raised him up to fit for their wickedness in thousands bim for destruction. Bat the con- of instances. science of Pharaoh condemned him Since, then, moral good and evil for his wickedness, and he was do not depend on the Divine deconstrained to cry out, at different crees, but on the nature of moral times, “I have sinned; the LORD actions; since the decrees of God IS RIGHTEOUS; but I and my poo- do not destroy the free agency of ple are wicked."
The consciences mankind; since the holy and wise of Joseph's brethren smote them God condemns them for their wickfor their wicked conduct; though ed conduct; and since mankind God had “ sent” him into Egypt, have so frequently condemned * to preserve them a posterity in themselves, and justified the conthe earth, and to save much people duct of God; we may have the alive.” “ They said one to ano- assurance, that the decrees of God ther, We are verily guilty con- afford not the least excuse for the cerning our brother, in that we saw least transgression. the auguish of his soul, when he This subject suggests a number besought us, and we would not of important inferences, which, by hear." Judas knew the Divine the leave of the Editor, will be purposes respecting himself; for submitted in a subsequent essay. his conduct was foretold ages
Philo-HOPKINSIAN. fore he was born. Our Lord, also,
ON REVIVALS OF RELIGION. , it is not easy, in all cases, to disNo. V.
tinguish between a genuine and a
spurious work, because they are so The subject introduced in my often intermixed with each other, last essay, was the distinction be- and because they have so many tween a genuine and a spurious | points of resemblance. A few rerevival. It was then discussed in marks were made on the nature of part only. It was observed, that I false religion, and a definition of a
sparious revival was given. Some saved; he begins to resort to reliof the points of resemblance be- gious meetings, to read the bible, tween a genuine and a spurious and to attend to all sorts of reliwork were then brought into view, gious duties. He breaks off his and the subject left for the consid- external immoralities, and reforms eration of iny readers. In this his life. He weeps abundantly, essay, and the following, I propose and cries for merey with great to point out some of the principal earnestness. But there is no conmarks of distinction.
viction in all this. He has no 1. In a genuine revival, there is sense of the spirituality and extent real conviction of sin; in a spurious of the divine law. He has no sense one there is not. There is, indeed, of the deep depravity of his own in a spurious revival, much that is heart. He is not sensible of any called conviction. We often hear enmity of heart against God. He the word applied to every degree thinks he is growing better, and of awakening, let its nature be doing many things acceptable to what it may. Whenever a sinner God. And not unfrequently, when is alarmed, whenever he feels a he has continued this course sense of his danger, whenever he short time, he begins to think he begins to manifest any anxiety for has become truly religious. He securing his eternal happiness, he cherishes a hope that his sins are is said to be under conviction. If forgiven, and that God is his friend, this were the proper meaning of and begins to love him with great the word, there could be no dis- ardour. tinction made, in this respect, be- But when the work is genuine, tween a genuine and a 'spurious it goes deeper. The sinner disrevival. Such appearances are covers that the law of God is spircommon to both. But this is not itual and holy, and extends much the proper meaning of the word. farther than he had before thought. Conviction of sin is something very He sees that it reaches to every different from all this. To pro- secret desire and purpose of the duce all this, nothing more is nec soul, and requires perfect obediessary, than that the sinner should
ence, on pain of eternal death. In realize that God is angry with him, the light of the law, thus set home and disposed to punish bim accord-upon his conscience, he obtains a ing to his deserts. lle is indeed, new discovery of the temper of his convinced that he is a sinner; for own heart. He sees that it is all no man can refuse to acknowledge sin. He now realizes that he has that. But his sense of his sins is done nothing but sin all his life. obtained by looking over his past He now sees that his heart is enlife, and considering the outward mity against God; and considering acts of transgression with which he himself in God's hands, and that has been chargeable. And per-God will probably destroy him forhaps he takes into view, also, ever, to glorify his own great name, some of the grosser sins of the he feels his heart rise, and rage, heart, such as the indulgence of with a spite and malice, of which unlawful desires, and the plans of he before thought himself incapawickedness he has contrived.- ble. He no longer denies the docComparing these with the threat-trine of total depravity. He knows enings of divine vengeance, which it is true in his own case. He sound in his ears, he is alarmed sees that all his prayers and tears and filled with anxiety. He begins and cries have been selfish and to enquire what he must do to be wicked. He is no longer able to
jastify himself in any degree. IIe what they must do to secure it. In sees that the divine requirements proportion as they discovered this are all reasonable and right. His danger, in the same proportion judgment and conscience are on they were anxious to obtain delivthe side of God: Ilis cavils and
When they learnt that objections are silenced; his mouth by becoming religious they might is stopped. But his heart it still be happy forever, they began to unreconciled: And the more clear seek with all diligence how they and lively his sense of these things might become so. As God is the is, the more does his heart rise most powerful being in the uniand swell and rage, with the very verse, they saw that it would be temper of the damned. This is necessary to secure his favour. As conviction: And though it is not they were sensible that they had always followed by conversion, sinned against him, they were nor is always found in the same afraid he would be provoked to degree, yeť for substance, it ap- destroy their idol. Influenced by pears to be an essential pre-requi- these considerations, they reformsite to a genuine work of grace. ed their lives, confessed their sins,
2. In a genuine revival; God is and cried for mercy. And having, loved, by the subjects of it, chiefly as they supposed, prevailed with for his own sake; in a spurious God by these means, to bestow one, he is loved by the subjects of mercy and having obtained, as it, chiefy for his great kindness to they imagine, some assurance that them.-Men are by nature selfish; their sins are forgiven; having been and when they have become the delivered from the horrible pit subjects of a false experience, they which was yawning to devour them; are selfish still. No change has they are filled with gratitude to taken place in the real temper of their deliverer, and manifest it by their hearts; it is only expressed the liveliest expressions of thankin a different form, and flows in a fulness and praise. They appear different channel. Before they be- to feel that they can never speak came serious, their selfishness was enough of the goodness of God to acted out in the pursuit of the them; and they call upon others pleasures of this life; now, it is to join with them to love and praise expressed in the pursuit of happi- the Lord. ness in the life to come. The ulti- Such is the result of a false exmate object is the same, but the perience. The love to God which means of attaining it are different. is thus produced, is often ardent -Their own happiness is the su- and strong, and passes with many preme object in both cases. Self for true holiness of heart. And is regarded as the most important not only does it pass for true holiobject in the universe, and is, in ness of heart, but oftentimes for a reality, the only god they worship. very eminent degree of it. But While they saw no danger in their its spuriousness is easily detected. course, they pursued their favourite Ask one who feels it, what it is in object, without feeling the neces- God that he admires. If he speaks sity of any religion; but when they the feelings of his heart, he will discovered the dangers that beset reply, I love God for his great their path, they became alarmed. | goodness to me. And some have When they saw that, by pursuing gone so far as to avow, that this their present course, their own hap- was the sole reason they loved him; piness would be lost, they began and that if they did not beliere he to enquire, with much carnestness, I loved them, and intended to save
them, they should feel justified in these hopes and these prospects, hating him forever.
and you deprive him of all his It is not so with the subjects of joys, and fill him with distress and a genuine revival. They do not gloom. feel that their own happiness is the It is not so with the subject of most important object in the uni- a genuine work. His own happiverse. They do not feel that they ness is no longer his supreme obshould be justified in hating God, ject. The consideration of its if he should treat them as they de- security is not that which gives serve, They do not feel that it is him his chief joy, nor does the fear impossible for them to love God, of losing it deprive him of his unless they have the assurance that present comfort. His joy is in he loves them. They see that his God. His chief delight springs character is lovely, in itself con- from the contemplation of the disidered. And they see that his vine character.' lie sees there justice is as lovely as his mercy every thing excellent and glorious. They also feel a strong and ardent And while he fixes his thoughts love to God; and express it by upon it, and employs all the powlively ascriptions of praise. But, ers of his mind in the contemplaask them what it is in God that tion, and traces out one perfection they admire, and they will reply, after another, and discovers more it iš the intrinsic excellence of his and more of the beauty and harcharacter. And they will tell you, mony of the whole, his heart is that he appears as glorious to them, warmed with holy love, and his in treating sinners as they deserve, soul is filled with joy unspeakable. as he does in exercising his mercy. In this rapture of the mind, his And they will tell you this, while own personal interests are forgotthey themselves entertain no hope ten. --The suggestion that they are of his favour, and even expect to safe, makes no sensible addition to be forever the monuments of his his joy; nor does the thought that vindictive justice.
they are otherwise, make any sen3. In a genuine and a spurious sible diminution. The subjects of revival, the joys of the new con- a genuine revival also experience vert arise from very different con- great pleasure in the thought that siderations. The subject of a the Lord reigns, and directs all false experience being wholly self-events according to his own pleasish, his joys are all of a selfish For, in his hands they feel nature. As the cause of his late that all is safe. In his perfections, distress was the selfish fear of los- they find ample security that all ing the great object upon which he events will take place accordirg had set his heart, and an appre- to the dictates of infinite wisdom, hension of suffering the wrath of and that as much good will be ulGod forever; his joy arises from timately brought into existence, viewing this danger as past, and as the most enlarged benevolence bis great object as secured. He
can desire. looks into the pit of destruction, Such appear to be some of the from which he fancies himself de marks of distinction between a genlivered, and rejoices in his own uine and a spurious revival. Others safety He looks forward to the will be mentioned in my next. happiness he expects to enjoy here
A Friend to Revivals. after, and is filled with exultation
Utica Christ. Repos: at the prospect. Deprive him of