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whom the earth will not leave unmolested, and whom heaven will not accept; ye who serve two masters, how long will ye fluctuate? Hold fast in your souls this one truth; whatsoever can be done on the part of God, hath already been done. The wedding festival is prepared; you have been invited; nothing remains but for you to come. The sea of love surrounds you; nothing remains but for you to drink. At the last day, when you wring your hands in despair, shall it be said, 'I was willing, but ye were not willing? How to approach him who approacheth you so graciously, you know. Seek the still hour, every day. Read the Holy Scriptures, every day. Attend, every hour and every instant, to every attracting influence of the Holy Spirit. When the Spirit keepeth silence, then cling to your prayer.
Israel! why wilt thou die? Lo, thou knowest what course is needful for thy happiness. Whoever remaineth shut out, whoever remaineth shut out from the work of grace, he hath shut himself
NOTES BY THE TRANSLATOR.
NOTE A, Page 115.
THE sermons of Tholuck, which are translated in this volume, may not be the most highly finished specimens of his pulpit-style; but they are supposed to exhibit as much thought that would be interesting to American Christians, and in combination with this as much of their author's peculiarity of manner, as any equal number which he has published. They were all preached at the service appointed for the University students at Halle. The title of the volumes from which they are taken is, "Predigten in dem akademischen Gottesdienste der Universität Halle in der St. Ulrichs-und in der Domkirche gehalten, von Dr. A. Tholuck." The first sermon in this selection is found in Tholuck's 4th Volume, or more properly “Sammlung,” pp54-68; the second, in his 2d Vol. pp. 164-176; the third, in his 4th Vol. pp. 123-136; the fourth, in his 1st Vol. pp. 32-46; the fifth, in his 1st Vol. pp. 161-171; the sixth, in his first Vol. pp. 74–86.
NOTE B, Page 115.
The title which Tholuck gives to this sermon is, "The true idea of the external discipline of the law under the Christian economy." As Tholuck is sometimes accused of incoherency in his train of thought, it is judged expedient to give a brief synopsis of the contents of each sermon. The following is an analysis of the first discourse.
Introduction; the piety of former times characterized by observance of law; that of modern times, by impulses of feeling; p. 115. Text, explication, division; p. 116. The fervent Christian is not prompted to the performance of his religious duties by the fact, that they are commanded; p. 117. Illustration, drawn from our performance of many moral duties, without being prompted by the civil law; happiness of such a state of freedom; p. 118. The Christian, so far as he is remiss, stands in need of law; he needs the law, that he may have before him a standard of perfect virtue; in what manner does the law humble for sin; what is comprehended under the term 'law;' p. 119. The imperfect Christian needs the law, that he may be fortified against the sins, which most strongly tempt him; reciprocal influence of internal and external actions; p. 120. Necessity of resisting sin; p. 121. Importance of outward observances, illustrated in the case of the ancient Israelites; also in the case of the Quakers; pp. 122, 123. Exhortation to observe outward forms; p. 123. The imperfect Christian needs the law, as a seal of the method which he has chosen of obtaining the divine favor through grace; p. 124. Dependence of Protestant Christians on their own works; illustration; pp. 124, 125. Conclusion, p. 125.
NOTE C, Page 116.
Perhaps there is no act of the Saviour's life, more full of doctrinal instruction, and more illustrative of the remark that his deeds were in themselves discourses, than that recorded in Matt. 12: 1-8, Mark 2: 23-28, and Luke 6:1-5. He evinced here as well as elsewhere, the greatness and stability of his mind, by doing what was precisely right, in opposition to the two parties who were, though in two opposite ways, wrong. Some would have been glad to see the Sabbath desecrated, and many would have been glad to see it observed with over-scrupulous strictness; but Christ in opposition to both extremes does what is just right. An ultra-conservative spirit would have inquired, whether one extreme of wrong were not safer than the other; whether there were not a stronger tendency in man to license than to rigor; and therefore whether it would not be the more judicious and prudent course, to go a little farther than needful one way, so as to deter men from going too far the other way; to encourage the extreme of undue severity, so as to draw men from the worse extreme of injurious liberty. But with a full view of the proneness of man to convert indulgence into license, our Saviour defended the course which was most obnoxious to the high religionists of his time. And yet he defended it on such sober
principles, as to give no countenance to those latitudinarian views of the Sabbath, which his act is supposed by some to have sanctioned.
The five reasons, which he gave for the plucking of the ears of corn, are,— first, that the example of David, recorded in 1 Sam. 21: 6, is a precedent for allowing the necessities of nature to suspend ceremonial observances; secondly, that the custom of sacrificing victims, circumcising infants, and performing other works connected with the rites of Judaism, was a precedent for allowing just so much manual and secular labor, as the spiritual good of men required; thirdly, that the Old Testament expressly declares mercy to be more acceptable to God than sacrifice; or, in other words, kindness and rational benevolence to one's self and others, to be better than austere and onerous ceremonies, see Hosea 6: 6; fourthly, that the Sabbath is not the end and man the means, but man is the end and the Sabbath the means; and fifthly, that the Messiah is Lord of the Sabbath, and has power at any time to release from its observance. For a full explanation of these reasons, see Calvin's Com. Vol. 1. pp. 280, 281.-The evil consequences, which have resulted, and are still resulting, to the interests of religion upon the continent of Europe, from the loose views of the Reformers on the subject of the Sabbath, and from the propagation of these views through the German and the neighboring churches, form a striking commentary on the dissonance of so lax a doctrine with the doctrine, always salutary, of the great Teacher of morals.
This may be a proper place to add, that first in the paragraph to which this note refers, and subsequently in various parts of the sermon, there is an explanation given of the words, "the Son of man is Lord of the Sabbath," which although defended by some able critics, does not seem to be correct. "In the concluding expression," says Olshausen," which all the evangelists have in common,- The Son of man is Lord of the Sabbath,' the words 'Son of man' cannot possibly be supposed parallel with the word 'man' in Mark 2: 27. For although sinful mortals were not made for the sake of the law, but conversely the law was made for the sake of these mortals; yet it would be altogether improper to affirm, that they are Lords of the law, or of any one of its ordinances. This can be said of him only who is the perfect man, the first of men. The phrase Son of man' is here to be regarded as in contrast with the word 'man' in Mark 2: 27, and therefore the phrase expresses the Messianic authority of Jesus. As the Lord of heaven (1 Cor. 15: 47), even while wandering here below in the plain garb of a human being, the Messiah was elevated above all the legal ordinances, for his will itself was the law. He never exhibits himself, however, as in any manner annulling the law, but as fulfilling it in a deep spiritual sense, Matt. 5: 17. Thus the Redeemer fulfils the precept of the Old Testament respecting the Sabbath, while he recommends an inward warmth of soul and rest in God.” Comm. on New Test. Vol. I. p. 366.
Tholuck's opinion, that the term Sabbath is used in the text by synecdoche for the whole law, is the same with that of Olshausen, Vol. I. p. 365, and of other evangelical commentators.
NOTE D, Page 125.
The title which Tholuck gives to this sermon is, "The truth, that the Lord is not in the storm and tempest, but in the soft, still sound,-considered in reference to the appearance of the Saviour in the world."
The sermon was preached Dec. 26, 1834, on the second day of the Christmas-Festival; hence the allusions in the introductory sentence. The religious festivities of Christmas, as observed by the German Lutherans, commence on the 25th of December, and extend to the 6th of January; the former day being regarded as that of Christ's birth, and the latter as that of the Epiphany. The 26th of Dec., the second day of Christmas, is connected with a particular reference to the martyrdom of Stephen; the 27th, the third day, to the memory of John the Evangelist; and the 28th, the fourth day, to the slaughter of the infants at Bethlehem. See Augusti Handbuch der Christ. Archaeol. I. pp. 531, 7, 8.
The following is the analysis of this discourse. Introduction; general celebration of the birth of Christ; p. 126. Text; explication; pp. 126, 127; Division, p. 128. The gentleness of Christ's mission is shown by the manner of his entrance into the world; p. 128. Effect produced on the mind by conceiving of the appearance of Jehovah to us; p. 128. Difference between the mode of creating, and that of destroying; peculiar circumstances of Christ's advent; what might they have been; p. 129. What will be the circumstances of his second coming; p. 130. The gentleness of Christ, exemplified in his progress through the world; humility of his appearance; p. 130. Predictions of his mildness; contrast between him as a preacher, and other inspired men; p. 131. Character of Christ's miracles in contrast with what it might have been, and what the character of other miracles has been; p. 132. The gentleness of Christ shown in the manner of his leaving the world; how might he have departed; how did he depart. Conclusion; p. 133.
NOTE E, Page 128.
Tholuck has another discourse on the same text with this, and immediately succeeding it, in Vol. 2, pp. 177–192. Subject,-The truth that 'God is not in the storm and tempest,' considered in its application to God's treatment of men. The following is a brief abstract of it.
"My worshipping friends, on the last Feast-day I made this text the theme of a discourse, and considered it in reference to the appearance of Jesus Christ in the world.-But as the diamond sends forth its bright beams from whatever side it may be looked upon, so many incidents and expressions recorded in sacred writ impart instruction, from whatever aspect they may be viewed. This is true with our text; in various respects the Lord is not in the storm but in the soft sound. Let us to day consider the words in reference to God's treatment of men.
If now we understand by the storm and tempest those times in which God comes near to men with terror and desolation, it may appear questionable, whether the words of our text can be applied to his treatment of our race. For who of us does not know how often in the history of the world, how often in the history of the christian church the Lord has appear ed in terror and devastation? Yea who is not aware how much more infrequent have been the times, when God appeared to him in the mild gentle sunshine, than those in which he came as the storms roared, and the clouds of the tempest gathered. The Lord does indeed appear to man in the storm and tempest, as Christ also will appear in the same, though at his first coming he appeared in the soft sound,
We add, however, that the most appropriate manifestations of the Deity are in the gentle mode. When our text asserts, that he is not in the storm and tempest, it can be understood only in this sense, he is not in the storm and tempest so characteristically as in the gentle whisper. Thus you often find in the Bible an exclusive and negative proposition, which must be understood with some limit of this sort. It is said for example, I am not come to bring peace but a sword,' and also, when thou makest an entertainment, invite not thy friends, but the poor, the cripple, the blind, the lame.' Wherefore let us consider, first, the truth that the Lord does come in the storm and tempest, and secondly that he comes, in a more peculiar sense, in the soft sound.
1. That the Lord comes in storm and tempest is evident, in the first place, from the history of the world, and of the church, as they are considered collectively. It seems to be with men, as it is with the hour-glass, which must at certain times be turned upside down, so that it may go. (Illus trated by various historical facts.)
That the Lord comes in storm and tempest is shown, in the second place, in the history of men considered individually.-Is it not true that when the sun shines upon us, and we feel its gentle warmth in our life, we become indifferent to its mild beams, and do not so much as ask, whence comes the pleasant light? Because it is grateful to our feelings, we think that it is a matter of course. If any one says, this is the work of the beloved God, it is said in mere formality. Not until the tempest comes, which we dread, do we look around us and inquire,-whence comes this? Before the eye of the Christian there rises to the clouds from every event in life a thread, on which the eye moves along up to the Source, where all gifts end and begin. But the eye of the natural man sees not the thread, so long as the sun shines. When it is night and lightning gleams through the darkness, then only does he discern the thread, then for the first time do his tardy affections rise upward to God. Oh what an image of the heart of man, in this respect, is the history of Israel. What Moses says in his parting song, how it is confirmed in the history of us all. The Lord found them in the desert, in the barren wilderness; and as an eagle fluttereth over her young, and beareth them away, so the Lord spread out his wings, and took them, and bore them on his wings, and nourished them with the fruits of the