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sins, and to return from whence they have fallen through the infirmities of the flesh and the prevalence of temptation. For though most certain it is, that sorrow should be the constant attendant upon sin, and daily transgressions call for daily penitence; yet fatal experience convinces us of another truth, no less certain, that in a body so frail, and a world so corrupt, cares and pleasures soon oppress the heart, and insensibility soon brings on the slumbers of listlessness and negligence as to its spiritual concerns, which, unless dissipated and dispersed by frequently repeated admonitions, will at length seal it up in the deep sleep of a final impenitence. It was wisely foreseen that, should the sinner be permitted to reserve to himself the choice of a "convenient season" wherein to turn from sin to righteousness, that convenient season would never come; and the specious plea of keeping every day holy alike would often be found to cover a design of keeping none holy at all. It seemed good therefore to the Church to fix a stated time, in which men might enter on the great work of their repentance. And what time could have been selected with greater propriety than this "Lenten" or spring season, when universal nature, awakening from her wintery sleep, and coming out of a state of deformity, and a course of penance, imposed for the transgression of man, her Lord and Master, is about to rise from the dead; and putting on her garments of glory and beauty, to give us a kind of prelude to the renovation of all things? So that the whole creation most harmoniously accompanieth the voice of the Church, as that sweetly accordeth to the call of the Apostle, "Awake thou that sleepest, and arise from the dead, and Christ shall give thee light."'
ON THE BAPTISM OF THE APOSTLES.
CONSIDERING the doctrine of baptismal regeneration held by the Church, we need only quote the text, Except a man be born of water and of the Holy Ghost, he cannot enter the kingdom of God' (John iii. 5), in order to prove, either that the Apostles must have been baptized, or that an exception to the rule laid down by our Saviour must have been made in their behalf.
It is improbable that an exception to the general rule would be made in their favour:
1st, Because no reason can be assigned why such exception should be made.
2d, Because our Saviour, though coming to abrogate the Mosaic law, performed all its requirements so long as it remained in force, and it is highly improbable that he would permit his disciples to evade any of those injunctions which, in the new covenant, he had laid upon the rest of his Church.
3d, Because the immaculate Jesus received this rite at the hand of the Baptist.
4th, Because St Paul, the most zealous and active of the Apostles, was baptized, and in baptism washed away his sins. (Acts xxii. 16.) Concluding, then, that the Apostles were baptized, we shall next inquire, By whom was it administered? It must either have been by the Baptist, by each other, or by their Lord.
On the one hand, the baptism of John was much inferior to that of Christ; and it seems unlikely that the Apostles should baptize each other; while, on the other hand, there seems no one by whom the rite could be more appropriately administered than by Christ himself.
We shall now examine the question,-Is the baptism of the Apostles recorded in the gospel?
The incident of Jesus washing his disciples' feet (John xiii), is generally regarded as his inculcating lowliness of mind on his followers, by himself performing a servile office. But when we note the solemn remarks (verses 1-3) with which the Apostle prefaces his narrative, and the minuteness with which he describes the ceremony, we cannot but be impressed with the conviction, that more is intended to be taught by it than a mere lesson of humility. A lesson of humility it certainly was, and as such St Peter regarded it, when he said with surprise, Lord! dost thou wash my feet?' But the answer of Jesus, What I do thou knowest not now, but thou shalt know hereafter,' proves that St Peter's opinion of his action was much below the reality, and that he was wrong in supposing it to be merely an act of condescension, or example of humility. When Peter, still unsatisfied, protested, Thou shalt never wash my feet,' Jesus answered, 'If I wash thee not, thou hast no part with me.'
Compare with this expression our Lord's words when he is confessedly speaking of baptism,- Except a man be born of water and the Holy Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God' (John
iii. 5); or St Paul's, According to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost' (Titus iii 5); and again, 'Christ loved the Church, and gave himself for it, that he might sanctify and cleanse it by the washing of water through the word' (Eph. v. 26).
It may be objected, that in this case the Apostles, though born of water, were not at the same time born of the Holy Ghost; though washed with the laver of water, they received not the gift of the Spirit; but this objection is satisfactorily answered in the words of the Apostle, The Holy Ghost was not yet given, because that Jesus was not yet glorified.' Even the pledge which was given at the institution of the last Supper, was not fulfilled till the day of Pen
It being true that those whom our Lord washed not had no part with him, it must be equally true that those whom he washed had a part with him, that by this washing they were associated with him; or, in the words of the Catechism, 'made members of Christ, children of God, and inheritors of the kingdom of heaven.' Here, then, we find the same effects attributed by our Lord to this washing, which are, in other parts of Scripture, ascribed to baptism.
Peter, now made aware of the importance of the washing, made the following request :- Lord, not my feet only, but also my hands and my head.' Jesus answered, 'He that is washed, needeth not save to wash his feet, but is clean every whit.' This observation, taken in a literal sense, is obviously false. The only washing of which we can conceive it to be true, is baptism. If it be admitted, that in this rite it is a matter of indifference what part of the body is immersed or sprinkled, then the force of the observation is at once discernible. It were the same as if our Saviour had said, 'He whom I wash is purified from sin, and this purification depends not upon what part of the body is washed, but is equally efficacious, whether applied to the hands, head, or feet.'
That our Lord alluded to a purification of the soul, is apparent from what follows,-'Ye are clean, but not all;' for he knew who should betray him, therefore he said, 'Ye are not all clean.'
But it may be asked if Judas was washed, how did it happen that he was not purified? An answer is given by St Paul,-So, then, there is no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh but after the Spirit' (Rom. viii. 1). Judas, who was a thief and had the bag, certainly walked after the flesh.
We have thus attempted to show that there is more taught in the incident of Christ's washing the Apostles' feet than a mere lesson of humility. We have also endeavoured to establish an analogy be tween the effects of this washing, as described by our Lord, and the effects of baptism as pourtrayed in other parts of the New Testament; an analogy which, if real, cannot be the effect of chance. We have also shown it to be highly probable, that the Apostles were baptized by our Lord; hence we conclude, that Christ, when he washed the Apostles' feet, then baptized them. Being himself the Omnipotent Jehovah, he did it in his own name, and by his own authority, the Holy Ghost not being then given, because that Jesus was not yet glorified.
ON AN AMPHIBOLIA IN THE BAPTISMAL OFFICE.
DEAR MR EDITOR,-I avail myself of your columns for the indication of a slight propriety in the reading of the first Collect in the Baptismal Office.
That Collect commences thus: Almighty God, who of Thy great mercy didst save Noah and his family from perishing by water." Now, if I do not mistake, this clause is generally read and understood as if the words by water' were united not to 'save' but to 'perishing;' as if, in short, the prayer ran thus: Who didst save Noah and his family from being drowned.' Yet the whole strain of the Collect concurs with 1 Pet. iii. 20,* to demonstrate that this impression is erroneous. Not the destructive agency of water (submerging the ante-diluvians), but its conservative (sustaining the ark) is the thing intended; so that the clause ought to be read as if the words stood thus: Who didst save by water Noah and his family in the ark from perishing.'
I should not have ventured to point out what seems so very selfevident, had I not ascertained that several of my clerical brethren have, like myself, long taken up with the wrong reading and reference. -I am, dear Mr Editor, with much esteem, your faithful Servant,
Feby. 7, 1848.
*Wherein few, that is, eight souls were saved by water."
NOTICES OF MEMORABLE DAYS IN THE MONTH.
MAR. 8.-ASH WEDNESDAY.
CONSIDER, O Christian, to-day, that dust and ashes thou art, and unto dust and ashes thou must return. A little while, and there will be only left of thee, proud and vain as thou art, but a little earth. The body thou feedest, the limbs thou clothest, all will soon be the prey of the grave-worm. 'For, when the breath of man goeth forth, he shall turn again to the earth, and then all his thoughts perish.' All thy plans of self-aggrandisement, of gaining wealth or honour, will then come to nought. Men of old time sought to impress this truth upon themselves by clothing themselves in sackcloth, and covering themselves with ashes-the emblems and sacraments of their frail mortality. Thou, perchance, despisest their piety. Take heed, lest they rise up in judgment against thee. Thou livest as though thou wert never to die, and yet ridiculest the means which holy men of old took to render their hearts more alive to their dying estate. Arise, Christian, this day, put off thy rich garments, and clothe thee with mean and humble raiments. Picture to thyself what thou wilt be in the grave whither thou goest-and resolve henceforth to live more like one who soon must die, and mingle with his kindred dust.
I know that there will be still who say, as the Pharisees and objectors did in this place, "the disciples of Christ fast not." (S. Luke v. 33.) To all which I oppose in short, the word and example of our Lord and Master-His word of promise to this mean and least duty of fasting, "Thy Father shall reward thee openly," when thou dost it secretly: His direction, "this kind cometh not out but by prayer and fasting" His command and prediction in my text, "this wine must be put up," and, "they shall fast ;" and this text thus interpreted of the Church and set fasts, and principally of this set fast of Lent, by the Church itself, in Tertullian (who, after he became heretical, attacks the Church for only observing the Lent fast, and not those also ordained by Montanus); by S. Augustine; by S. Chrysostom and others.
Epiphanius speaking of the followers of Aerius, in Heresy seventysays, "And in the days of the Paschal fast, when with us there