« السابقةمتابعة »
TO A FRIEND GATHERING WILD
his own honesty as confidently as
O fate severe! earth's lesson early taught, the other: and so of the rest.
That all is vain, save virtue, love, and
truth: not quite satisfied neither, that every
We own it all wlio thro' life's day have religious instructor claims to be
wrougit ; an evangelical one. I strongly sus
But thou hast learntit in the morn of youth. pect there are some who have no great predilection for the term, and Pupil of heaven thou art ; compute thy gain,
When dulness loads thee, or regret asthat, not on account of its abuse, but
sails : on account of its real meaning. Per- All is not lost, for faith aud hope remain, haps the Anti-jacobin Reviewer will,
And gentle charity, which never fails. on some future occasion, suggest a
Now love shall glow where envy might more significant appellation than
have burn'd; that which he would explode, and
Now every hand, and every eye is thine :
Thine eyes, and not another's, shall
behold. If the following lines should meet your approbation, you will by inserting them oblige, yours, &c.
For the Christian Observer.
The hand which steals the flowery
wreath; pains ;
I've seen thee thrust the thorn aside, Natare bath shut the book—thy task is
To pluck the flower which blushed bedone:
neatb. Of all ber various charms what now remains? And thus, M-r-a, as the wheel
To smell the violet, and feel the sun. Of life leads ou the changing hour, In liberal toil thy youthful hands did grow, Remember still the sweets to steal :
Quick moving at thy better sepse's call;. Elude the thorn to pluck the Power. That better sense is gone! their task is now
When fortune shews a dubious sky, To twist the yarn, or grope the friendly
The East inay smile, the West may lour; wall.
Still to the brighter turn the eye: * We have received a letter from a corre
Elude the thorn to pluck the flower. spondent, who signs himself Anti-Venom, In pity to its child below, in which, after alluding to a declaration If Heaven the cup of comforts sour, of the A. J. reviewers, in their Number for The lesson learn, but chase the woe : December last, that "could any thing in- Elude the thorn, but pluck the flower. duce them to quit their native land, it would But then-ah, shun the sweets which grow be their wish to become the subjects of such
Where pleasure paints her poison'd a Prince," as the Emperor of Russia; he
bowers; very generously proposes “to open a sub- Dark are those streams which gently how, seription for paying the expence of their re.
And rude the thorns which guard hes moval to the dominions of this child and
fiowers. champion of Anti-Jacobinism, with whom they are emi aptured ;" for, he adds,
And seek thy sweets on holier ground, could well spare them.” After delibe
And wbere religion's altar's rise : rating, however, upon this proposal, we
Her's are the thorns which pever wound, have not thought it adviseable to recom
And her's the lower which never dies, mend it to our readers. EDITOR,
E.-Y. D. R.
REVIEW OF NEW PUBLICATIONS.
The Christian System unfolded in a fence even of a material post, none
Course of Practical Essays on the perlaps may be more fit than some principal Doctrines und Duties of young divines. In the general Christianity, in 3 Vols. By THOMAS “ defence of the Gospel” let those ROBINSON, M. A. Vicar of St. rather be employed who have often Mary's, Leicester, 8vo. London, traversed the whole land, have surRivingtou's and Hatchard, 1805. veyed every district through which Price £.1. 4s.
they have passed, have fought many Mr. Robinson is already known to smaller battles, and though still cathe public as the author of 4 volumes pable of exertion are beginning to of Scripture characters, which have grow somewhat grey in the service. been generally acceptable, as well as
We cannot give a better summary of some smaller pieces. In his intro- of the contents of these three voduction to the present work he lumes, which are distributed into says:
93 essays, than by adopting a conis the author submits to the public eye cise statement of the author. Vol. 1. the following statement of his views of is said to contain practical essays revealed religion, not without fear respect. on the divine attributes, the state of ing his execution of the work, but with a
man, and the character and offices cheerful hope of its utility through the di- of Jesus Christ:-Vol. 2. Practical vine blessing. He comes not forward as a disputant or a controversialist; but as a
essays on the person, operation, and plain, practical writer, desirous to promote
fruits of the Holy Spirit:--and Vol.3. the purposes of Christian faith and holiness.” Practical essays on Christian obe
"The chief attention of his life has been dience, prayer, and the sacraments. occupied by these subjects, not merely in Of the manner in which Mr. Ro. the retirement of his study, but in the ac- binson has executed his plan, we tire performance of his ministerial duties. shall enable our readers to judge in He has been labouring, not without effect,
some measure for themselves, by to establish among the people of his charge presenting them with a few quota what he conceives to be the fundamental tions. principles of the Gospel, and upon them as
The first essay is on the divine a firm basis to erect the superstructure of Christian morality, of solid devotion, and of origin of the Holy Scriptures. Mr. vital holiness. And now with a view to Robinson, after a short allusion to their spiritual progress, and in the hope that the external evidence of their truth his instructions may be remembered with thus proceeds: advantage after his personal services on " The Bible' contains an internal eviearth are terminated, he sends to thein dence which proves it to be 'given by infrom the press the substance of what he spiration from God.' It raises the mind has invariably delivered from the pulpit.” to the most sublime conceptions, and en. (p. viii.)
joins the most pure and spiritual worship. We much approve a measure of It is the only book which describes the this kind in an old and respectable misery of our present lapsed condition, exminister of the Gospel; and we are actly as we experience it ; and while it asof opinion that works embracing so
signs the true cause, proposes an effectual large an object coine best from cure for the malady we have derived from
the fall. It disperses the fears of a guilty men whose judgment has been ma
conscience; it brings the gracious offer of tured by long experience, and who reconciliation with God, and introduces the are even verging towards the de, believer into a state of favour and commucline of life. For the lighter kind nion with him. Its manifest tendency is of theological combat, for the main to meliorate and exalt human nature, to tenance of an outwork, or the den subdue its corruptions, and implant all holg CHRIST. OBSERY. No. 51,
principles and affections. commands, ject of “ the goodness of God,” it produces, an abhorrence of evil; it incul- which is discussed in ihe succeeding cates and inspires the love of righteous- chapter had been somewhat more
Whererer its influence prevails, it extended. Our readers will be renders the soul superior to the temptations pleased with the following extracts: of the world, and opens to its view the bliss.
“ Could we suppose for a moment, that ful prospect of a glorious immortality. Who
a malignant spirit possessed these attriwill hesitate to say, that this cannot be the
butes, his wisdom would be no other than a contrivance of tools and deceivers, but
miscbievous craft, and his power would be that it proceeds from infinite wisdom, and exercised in viotence and oppression: they is decidedly the manifestation of an al
would not therefore claim our adoration or mighty, merciful, and holy God?
encourage our hope.”
" But when it ap“ We might appeal to a'cloud of wit.
pears, that our God is good, continually nesses', both ancient and modern. There influenced by a disposition to communiare innumerablé instances of those, who in cate happiness, and that his omnipotence consequence of this book have been de- and omniscience are directed by the inust livered from unspeakable anguish and hor- perfect benevolence, we may and we ror, and have been established in peace, should regard him with the strongest atlecconfidence, and joy. We can produce thou- tion and contidence.” (vol. i. p. 53.) sands, who have been turned by it from
“Let every reader review his own histohabits and dispositions the most vile and ry, and acknowledge therein the daily and abominable to the love and practice of innumerable proofs of the gracious provievery thing ainiable, excellent, and useful. dence of his God. Let us try to enomerate What is the general character of those, his favours, though all calculation must fail; who are most zealously attached to reve
for where shall we begin, or where end the lation ? and what of the persons who hate account? In helpless infancy, as well as in and reject it? Will not the very striking all the various stages through which we contrast between the two sorts afiord a
have passed, he has been our support. We strong presumption, that our religion de
are indebted to his care for the measure of scends from heaven. (vol. i. p. 8–10.) health, and every comfort in life which we
In the 3d chapter on “the power enjoy, for the kind friends so marvellously of God,” Mr. Robinson represents raised up and continued to us, and for the the mechanism of our bodies as well many deliverances from dangers and disas the faculties of our minds as proofs tresses, wrought for us in such a way as we
• Bless the of the “ power” of the divine artifi- could not contrive or conceire.
Lord, O my soul, and all that is within me, cer. In the following chapter
bless his holy name'.” (vol. i. p. 57.) the wisdom and knowledge of God,”
In the character especially of our Re. the sustentation and government of all deemer « he hath gloriously evinced the creatures are adduced as proofs of perfection of his goodness; goodness, bethe divine intelligence. It is perhaps yond all calculation, immense and infinite! difficult, however, thus to treat sepa. It is on this subject more than any other rately, and yet clearly and fully, of we shall be constrained to cry out in prothe several attributes of the Al- found admiration, GoD 15 LOVE. The mighty. The Scriptures sometimes whole scheme (of salvation]originated from refer the work, even of creation, to this source; and every part shews the exthe wisdom of God. “ The Lord by
ceeding riches of his grace, in his kindness towards
through Christ Jesus'." wisdom hath founded the earth. By
proposes the blessing to the most guilty, understanding hath he established 'he invites, solicits, and importunes the most the heavens.” They teach us, in- careless and obdurate to accept it, that is, deed, to admire and adore that unit- to be saved and to be happy for ever.” ed wisdom and power which we can- (vol i. p. 60.) not fully distinguish and explain. In a passage which occurs in the " Blessed be God; for wisdom and next essay, which is." the
pamight is his." "
Blessing, and glory, tience of God," we observed with and wisdom, and thanksgiving, and pleasure, that the offer of salvation honour, and power, and night, be is represented both as fair and uneurto our God for ever and ever.”
quivocal, and also as universal. We wish that the important sub- " Before judgment is executed, God
warns of the approaching stroke; he calls. among the sundry and manifold to submission; he proposes and invites to changes of the world:' il coill not be finally a reconciliation. Ue has devised a won- witharaien even for our ingralilude : and its drous scheme of mercy; he has provided and blessed etlects will be du.able as the throne revealed salvation; he offers it freely to of Darid. Such are the sure mercies of every penitent finder; he urg's the aceept
David.' "lo a little wrath I hid my face ance of it up:n alt; and after repeated re- froin thee for a moment, but with everlaste fusals, he still waits to be gracious.” (vol. i. ing kindness will I have mercy on thee
saith the Lord thy Redeemer.” (p. 114.) In a succeeding essay
When we find a prophetic pasmercy of God," nearly the same sen- sage from the Old Testament, which timents are expressed, but in such respects, primarily at least, the per. a way as indicates more clearly the severing kindness of God to the cola author's general mode both of think- lective body of the Jewish church, ing and expressing himselfon soine employed for the purpose of estapoints when involve considerable blishing the doctrines of individual diftienities in theology.
election and final perseverance: and " Blit wheu we speak of that mercy especially, when we also read that wlich is ‘unto eternal life,' we must re
it” (namely, as we must presume, mark that though the Gospel gives a gene
the plan of God as it respects indiral cali, and the Lord declares himselfready vidual election) " zill not be finally to receive, and bless and save all, of every withdrawn eren for our own ingruticharacter, i ho turn to him in penitence tude;" we are led to suggest to Mr. and faith, ya! those who y.) turn must acknowledge then cives indebted to him, for Robinson and his readers another disposing their wills to obey the call and passage of Scripture, which serves accept the gracious offer. They are thcre- at least to guard this view of the fore, in a peculiar manner the objects of subject.
When the righteous his mercy, and they feel their peculiar ob- turneth away from his righteousness, ligations.
Then they sear, and love, and and committeth iniquity, and doeth praise, and serve him, and look with ad- according to all the abominations miring gratitude on the high privileges, by that the wicked man doeth, shall he which bis siecial mercy, not their merit, live? All his righteousness that he hias distinguished them from others. These
hath done shall not be mentioned: are the vessels of mercy whom he prepares unto glory, and to his free and sovereign in his trespass that he hath trespasschoice they owe their hopes, their bolia ed, and in his sin that he hath sin. ness, and their salvation.” (vol. i. p. 112.) ned, in them shall he die." " When
The succeeding page contains a a righteous man turncth away from passage to which we are disposed to his righteousness, and committeth object, as communicating a some iniquity, and dieth in them, for his what partial view of a deep and aw- iniquity that he hath done shall he ful subject; and there is one expres
die." sion in it, proceeding, we have no We heartily approve of the foldoubt, from inadvertence, which lowing sentiment, which occurs in seems to us to coụntenance an anti- the succeeding chapter, “ on the nomian sentiment. We point it out veracity of God,” and we can asthe more readily, because no one
sure the pious author that we are who knows the author can possibly not less desirous of profiting by it suspect him of any leaning to so ourselves than of urging it upon pernicious an error.
others. “The mercy of the Lord is from ever- “ We may, indeed, mistake the sense" lasting to everlasting upon them that fear of Scripture; “ and after the most serious him.' The plan was formed" (the plan we investigation we should draw our conclupresume from the context of each indivi- sions with modesty and caution. When dual man's salvation) “ before the world we proceed to the study of the inspired began,' and it remains immutable, unlike Volume we should bring no systems with the uncertain compassions and short lived us, nor aim at the vindication of a party ; favours of our fellow creatures. It yaries and especially should we be careful to tag
aside all wrong affections which would disputation, means of exercising eloud the understanding and warp the judg- merely the intellectual talents, dogment.” (vol, i. p. 120.)
mas retained even in a rational The next chapter is on the Trinity age chiefly by means of a few zea, in Unity, and we agree with this lots, who derive undoubtedly some pious and, in general, very judicious support to their cause from the rewriter, that “on no point whatever cords of our own venerable church. are caution, diffidence, serious at: We cannot however, too often detention and devout prayer more ne- clare our opinion that these doccessary."
trines, now so frequently bearing The subjects handled in the course the reproach of being evangelicul, of these three volumes are so many constitute the sum and substance of and important, that we must not at- Christianity; and that we stand tempt to follow Mr. Robinson through much indebted to such men as Mr. each. Suffice it to say in respect Robinson, who, in an age of relito the topic of the Trinity as well as gious ignorance and indifference, several others of a doctrinal nature, and in the face of much opposition, into which we shall not particularly have laboured to revive this ancient enter, that the commonly received and orthodox faith. The doctrines arguments which are the arguments indeed must be viewed together; in general the most sound and con- they then constitute what Mr. Rovincing, are employed to prove their binson terms “ the Christian systruth :-that an excellent practical tem,” so far at least as the term syspurpose is uniformly kept in view: tem is applicable to Christianity: and'that if the author occasionally for thus they mutually support and errs a little, he errs only after the strengthen, correct and guard, illusmanner of other doctrinal writers, trate and adorn each other: and not a few of whom sometimes repre- when they are deeply impressed on sent a particular proof or argument, the mind, they infallibly produce to be more clear and strong than the holy affections; and by this influ. premises entirely warrant; and al- ence on the heart they secure the most all of whom appear to us to great end of obedience. The folbecome rather obscure and perplex- lowing extracts from the essay ed when they enter the region of the atonement,” will exemplify our metaphysics. Happily, Mr. Robin- author's method of connecting the son seems in general very glad to grand doctrines of Christianity with make his escape from this ground, their practical effects. almost as soon as he finds himself
" It is this" doctrine, he observes,
" which in a peculiar manner, arrests the The evangelical doctrines of the attention of the careless sinner, softens the corruption and inability of man, of hard heart, and constrains the penitent to
weep with unseigned contrition. Nothing salvation by grace, of the atonement
else can cause such genuine sorrow.” of Christ, of justification by faith " It is the view of Christ dying as a saalone, and of the operations and crifice for sin, which raises the trembling fruits of the Holy Spirit, which, Penitent from the dust, and encourages together with other doctrines con- him to rejoice in hope. He seems to hear nected with them, occupy the two the expiring Saviour say, “ Look unto me first volumes of this work, are deem- and be saved,' and then his fears are dised by many to be the “ hay and persed. At least, he ventures to make apstubble” of Christianity, to be a cor
plication to God for inercy in dependence
on that faithful saying, that · Jesus Christ rupt admixture which has added it.
came into the rurld to save sinners.' self to the pure gold, and which ought to be separated from it. These if he can present his supplications with any
“ In approaching to the throne of g
grace, doctrines, according to others, who boldness, or expect a favourable audience, do not absolutely reject them, are it is simply and entirely because he can barren theories, subjects of doubtful urge so powerful a plea, Jesus Christ the