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approved publications which most successfully develope, the
parts which, taken by themselves, may be forced into unisou
with their preconceived opinions. The following passage ap-
time that the imagination, when employed on spiritual subjects;
opens a wider field to the exercise of human corruption, than the sober strictness of established forms; we cannot but think that the partial mode of preaching the Gospel, to which we are here allud
ing, wherever it prevails, is more calculated to serve the cause of
enthusiasm and error, than to promote the advancement of that well principled system of religion, to which alone we can rea-. sonably look for the regular production of those spiritual fruits, the legitimate offspring of true faith, the distinguishing characteristic of genuine Christianity. And should those lamentablé effects which the perversion of the understanding in religious matters heretofore produced in this country, cease to retain their due impression on our minds; it must be, because that experience is . seldom sufficiently valued, for which the parties concerned have not been obliged to pay the cost. s
“But whilst urging this necessary point, with a view to the effect intended to be produced by the Gospel on Christian practics: ; we are well aware, that at all times, and in none more than the present, when a religion professedly founded on reason, to the exclusion of the fundamental prineiples of Christianity is boldly, . I may, I trust, as a Christian Minister, be-allowed to say, #.
- - - tively
o sively pushing itself into notice; every the least encroachment on those all-sufficient merits, on which the humble Christian builds his hope, must be watchfully provided against. For whether man depends upon Christ in such a sense as to render every exertion of his own in the work of salvation unnecessary, or so depends on himself, as to consider himself sufficient for the attainment of his own salvation, independant of divine grace, and - the satisfaction for sin by the blood of atonement; in either , - - case the essentials of Christianity are abrogated, and the plan laid * down in the divine councils on this subject eventually defeated. Against both these extremes, to which human corruption has at different times subjected the Christian Religion, whether against o the enthusiasm of the imaginary, and too often, it is feared, carnal * Christian on the one hand, or against the proud self-sufficiency of the rational one on the other, the Minister of Christ must be equally guarded. - • / - “Whilst then he uniformly reprobates all title to salvation raised on the ground of human merit, as the extreme of presumption; he will at the same time take care not so to undervalue good works, as to deprive them of their proper importance in the Christian system; considering that works performed under the in- . fluence of divine grace being acceptable to God in Christ; must, on that account, have their proportionate weight in the Christian scale. - - - “On the other hand, whilst pressing the necessity of those works of righteousness, which under the Evangelical dispensation are expected from man, for the purpose of qualifying him for the salvation which has been freely provided for him, he will, of course, as a master in Israel, in conformity with the doctrine of our Church, completely “shut them out from the office of justifying *.’ o In this view of the subject, the whole salvation of fallen man, from justification on his admission into a state of grace at baptism, through his successive sanctification by the Holy Spirit, to his final perfection in glory, will be uniformly represented as having its beginning, its continuation, and its ending in Jesus Christ: * In whom, as we read, all the promises of God are yea and t amen.” - “Should we indeed admit that the works of righteousness re- quired under the Gospel Dispensation had been performed; for the + performer of them to build his hope of salvation on the ground of his own personal merit, instead of placing it on the ground of that divine philanthropy, from which alone his title to it can be safely. derived; is to tear up the foundation on which the Christian building stands, “.. Whereas,” to use the words of the judicious Hooker, * the little fruit we have in holiness, it is, God knoweth, corrupt and unsound; we put no confidence at all in it; we challenge
* “See Homily on Salvation.” nothing
nothing in the world for it; we dare not call God to reckoning, as
if we had him in our debt books; our continued suit to him must
be to bear with our infirmities, and pardon our offences.” “In adjusting the Gospel balance then, to prevent, by placing
the due portion of weight in each scale, that preponderancy on.
either side which might defeat the purpose for which this balance. has been committed to our care; in plainer language, to lay deep and broad the foundation on which Christianity stands, and at the same time to provide that gold, silver, and precious stones be built upon it, not wood, hay, and stubble, which will not endure the fire; to the end, that the Christian professor may, under grace, become, so far as human infirmity will permit; that consistent character which the Gospel was designed to make him, “hic labor, hoc opus est;’ this is that important work which the preacher of the Gospel ought at all times to have before him; a work to the complete execution of which, more learning, discrimination, and judgment are, I conceive requisite, than in these times are usually employed upon it. But never, I believe, were learning, discrimination, and judgment more necessary to preserves sound and consistent interpretation of the sacred Word, that valuable deposit which the bright luminaries of our Church have left with her faithful sons, and to counteract that flimsy, partial, and in some degree erroneous system of divinity, which is confidently obtrud
ing itself on the public mind, than in the times in which we live.”
P. 27. - - * * * The clear and just view in which the Archdeacon has presented this object of needless controversy and dispute, cannot fail to convince the calm and unprejudiced reader how simple and rational are the doctrines of Scripture, and how wilful is the perversity, and how inexcusable the ignorance of those, who, by mutilating and disguising these sacred truths, have plunged the o world into the opposite extremes of error and de"Huston. - - * . . -
ART. VIII. A Sermon preached in the Church of Oundle, on
the Anniversary Accompt-day of Mr. Latham's Charities.
By the Rev. Joseph Heath, M.A. 24 pp. is. Rivingtons. 1815. • *.
THOUGH apparently upon a local subject, this discourse embraces a question of very considerable general importance; .viz. the appropriation of those charitable funds, which exist in inany parishes for the education of a few children, according to the wills of the various douors, to the furtherance of the grand objects of the National Society. We must confess that the question appears to us to be comprehended in a very short • , , . - Y - compass. vol. Iv.sept. 1815. *
compass. The children whose education is thus provided for, will in most instances be far better instructed under the Madras system, than in the muddling miserable method in which private parish schools were formerly conducted. The spirit therefore of the donor's will is much more justly preserved, than by a cautious adherence to the actual forms which it might prescribe, not from any preference to them, but because they were the only method of attaining the object in view at that time of day.
- Of the civil effects arising from an obstinate adherence to the drowsy inefficiency of the old plan, Mr. Heath speaks in the : following just and animated terms.
* “But, besides this, Children absent themselves almost at plea
sure, certainly at the desire of their unwise parents. And it is a ... fact well known, by many indeed undisguisedly avowed, that f admission is solicited merely for the sake of the clothing —This will be readily credited, when it is stated, that after a professed o attendance at school for five years, participating in its benefits so - far as the wearing of its livery, many boys may be instanced, who have attained neitlier the first rudiments of learning, nor the ABC *of religion; who can neither read the Testament, nor repeat the o Church Catechism 1 Occasional instances of native dulness may pérhaps be produced; but some more active cause must be in - operation to insure the frequency of such lamentable effects. | ... “To this want of discipline I cannot but ascribe, in a great - degree, the disgraceful prophaneness and ferocious insubordination, o which characterize our Youth. What else indeed could be ex-- pected? These are the natural products of such a system: nor could infidelity itself desire a more active Minister. Would we, my Brethren, check this torrent, how must we proceed? Let us ‘seek the fountain. head; when this is pure, pure and wholesome will o be the waters. I conjure you then most solemnly to give this subject the consideration it deserves. Experience and revelation promise you success. When the minds of youth have been duly trained to regularity and obedience, when they have been early impressed with the importance of being religious, no doubt should be entertained of their general happiness, “ He, that gathereth instruction in his youth, shall find wisdom tin his old age.” P. 18. ** ** * x - or ''. * =* - - - - ... "
The liberty which can fairly be allowed and can conscientiously be taken by the trustees, of engrafting their several funds for particular instractions upon the general stock, is thus stated both with clearness and ability. . . . . " . . . . a.s. . “We turn then to this question, Is a liberty of conduct permitted to those, who have the management? No depth of casuistry is requisite to answer, that, if an exercise of judgment was justifiable in the cases already instanced, or if the approval of that exercise be justifiable in pursuancé of the same, then are the trustees at full “. . . . . . - liberty
o - . . . . . . . ;
liberty to consolidate the schools, and henceforth so to conduct them as may be thought most useful. In order however, that the question may not be determined rashly, let us try it by our Saviour's golden rule—How would we, if blessed with the ability,+How indeed would the judicious LATHAM himself, now, model a School for the Education of the Poor in the Principles of the Established Church 2 For this, be it remembered, is the basis upon which he built; it is this noble structure to which he would give firm and
goodly pillars. His sentiments are recorded in his own words, that
he was willing his poor labours should relieve as many as might be; and your own opinion stands proclaimed in your admiration and support of the MADRAs SYSTEM.–By this all useful knowledge is
imparted in the readiest and most efficacious manner, and the true
principles of Christianity, as professed by the Church of England, at the same time inculcated to an extent almost indefinite.” P. 22.
Mr. Heath appears practically to understand his subject, and enforces his observations with that judicious zeal, which proves him to be actively engaged in the promotion of the good cause. We trust that his hints upon this important part of parochial policy will be generally adopted. - - - - - - - - -- "
* * * *
ART. IX. Sermon preached at the Visitation of the Archdeacon of Rochester, by the Rev. G. Mathew, A.M. Vicar of Greenwich. 4to. 32 pp. Rivingtons. 1815. . .
THE name of Mr. Mathew, as a sound and impressive preacher, has been long established, and we are happy to find that the character which he had established in the pulpit, he has maintained in the press. Mr. Mathew considers the state of religion in the country, as it regards the character of the clergy, and clearly shews that the evils which exist in the religious world, whether in the extremes of infidelity or enthusiasm, are not to be charged upon the neglect or the insufficiency of the clergy. Mr. Mathew considers the existence and the prevaleuce of infidelity, of irreligion, and of sectarism distinctly, under each of which head he clears, in a most satisfactory männer, the character of the clergy from the imputation too often cast upon them. The following is the mode adopted by Mr. M. with respect to the first of these charges. . * . . . . . . “Having now traced infidelity through its different gradations to this dreadful crisis, I may safely appeal to the infidel of the present day, to shew in what manner it involves the character of our Clergy.-If I were addressing him in those gloomy periods, when the Bible was closed from the eyes of the people, and they were - - - - Y 2 made