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church to rise, and assert her own ousies, and desertions. I am acrights, to do her own business, and quainted with a township of cold, secure her own objects.
hilly, hard land, which begun to be And what makes this subject pe settled about 1764. In 1785, it culiarly imperious at the present was set off from another town, and time is the alternative, which seems incorporated. The first settlers, to impend the church, at least in like most first settlers, were adventhis country, viz. That enlightened turers, with but little property. I enthusiasm, or blind fanaticism, presume it was thirty years at least must inevitably, one or the other, from the first settlement, before take lead, and controul the inter- there was one inhabitant who was ests of religion throughout our land. worth so much clear of debt, as his Nor is this a choice of evils. The farm and stock. By the United former character is the true apos. States' census of 1790, the number tolic spirit, and the only spirit that of inhabitants was three hundred is capable of renovating this world. and seventy-nine, or probably about The present cold, phlegmatic tem- eighty faunilies, of whom many were perament of the Christian ministry very poor. As there had been a can never advance the church, nor great increase subsequent to the in. stand against the encroachments of corporation, it is not probable there heresy and fanaticism. There is a were in 1785, more than forty pernecessity imposed upon us,
either sons who paid taxes. Yet the same to sacrifice a long succession of re- year they took measures to provide ligious prosperity,or to rise, and as- themselves with a meeting-house, gert the primitive character and and voted to raise twenty pounds rights of the Christian church. for schools, twenty pounds to hire
ANTIPAS. preaching, fifty pounds to build
school houses, and fifty pounds for
highways. In all four hundred and GOD HELPS THEM THAT HELP THEM- sixty-six dollars and sixty-seven
cents, besides the meeting-house.
In 1790, the pews in the meetingWe often have contributions so- house were sold to defray the exlicited for the purpose of assisting pense of finishing the house. The poor congregations to build or re- same year, 1790, they raised twenpair houses of public worship. Un- ty-five pounds for schools, and setdoubtedly there may be cases, in tied a minister, with a settlement of which it is a real act of charity to four hundred dollars, and a yearly grant assistance. But I am inclin- salary of two hundred dollars, to be ed to think that in many cases it is paid in produce at a stipulated rate. better for the societies themselves Whenever I find a people as much to build and finish according to their in debt, as far from market, and in means. If they cannot build large, as hard times, willing to do as much build small, and grow. They value for themselves as these, and yet retheir own acquisitions more than ally unable to secure the blessings that which costs them nothing. of the gospel, I feel inclined to help They then have a real bond of un- them. In 1785, the number of ion, a security against the incur church members was twenty males sions of other sects, a hold upon and fifteen females, and as they the affections of their people. They had no minister, it is not probable will know how to bear and forbear, they would be much increased by while societies which have done but 1790. So that this work was not little for themselves will be con- wholly the effect of any such pestantly exposed to offences, and jeal. culiar zeal for religion as is suppo
sed to characterize professors of re- forefathers had upon the character ligion.
and destinies of our country, to give Does any one ask what was the hardihood of character, far remoeffect of such early and vigorous ved from sloth and sickliness. It exertions? I answer, the same that was their education, their discipline. similar circumstances have upon a And when we attempt to save othman at the outset of life. They er societies from the burden of esimparted a tone and vigour to that tablishing religious institutions, in little community, which characteri. my opinion we act just as rationally, zes them to this day, and makes as the parent who employs servants them pre-eminently a virtuous, uni- to carry his boy, that is destined to ted, and enterprising people. The be a soldier.
S. F. D. same effect that the trials of our
THE NATURE AND EFFICACY OF THE ed, the house of God deserted, and
the society of Christ's followers
avoided, then we are not far from More mystery has been attached the kingdom of satan : and when to the Bible than actually belongs that holy volume is studied and reto it. Evangelical preachers (who flected on, and when the courts of in other points are much to be re- the Lord are frequented, and the spected and admired,) have too converse of his people eagerly de. generally represented the Bible as sired and sought for, then we are wholly unintelligible to the natural not far from the kingdom of God. man, and declare that to all but There is no book which may be the regenerate it is a sealed book. more easily comprehended than the But they are much in the wrong, Bible. It may be asked, Why do so who thus impress on the minds many read it without deriving any of men, that while they are unre- benefit? The fault rests not with generate, the Bible is utterly in the Bible ; it is wholly with the comprehensible : this is placing reader. fresh barriers between the sinner The written word is a pointed and his God; for instead of search- arrow, aimed by God himself at the ing the Scriptures, (which contain heart of man; but the reason it is our only rule of faith and practice,) not felt, and understood, and remen stand waiting for some stroke membered, is because the natural of the Spirit, some sudden' change, man is not willing to attain this which is to remove the clouds of knowledge: he seldom opens the obscurity, in which they imagine Bible; he reflects not on what he the word of Christ is enveloped. reads; none of its contents have But the Bible mav be considered power to fix his wandering thoughts, as the legible Spirit ; it is the voice except perhaps a moral precept, or of the Spirit ; and by this voice a poetical expression; he does not God is pleased to make his will seek to be made wise unto salvaknown unto us.
tion : sufficient light is given him, When the Bible remains un- but he wilfully shuts his eyes. There opened and unregarded, when is no veil cast over the Bible, but prayer and meditation are neglect- satan and himself have cast a veil VOL. I.No. XI.
over his understanding; and bis What was it that made man miheart is so filled with the vanities of serable? Sin. What is that can the world, as to leave no room for make him happy? A complete dethe reception of heavenly things. liverance from it. Now it may be firmly asserted, that You say that your appetites and any person regarding the Bible with passions are so strong that they lead reverence as the word of God, and you astray. Say rather that you yield reading it with an humble and teach- yourself up to them with heart and able disposition, holding its contents mind ;-the word of God is put inas sacred truths, and sincerely de- to your hands to be your guide, and sirous to impress them on his mind, it is of your own choice if you remay without difficulty comprehend ject the counsels which it contains. what he reads.
The religion of Christ has in it I do not say that the light of the something extremely engaging. It natural man is in equal degree with is the scheme of God to make man that of the spiritual man; (neither happy, and to prepare him for that haş one spiritual man the same pro. eternity which is before him. portion of light as another may pos- Give me the man that likes to be sess ;) but can we doubt of God's good, and I will answer for his beassistance in this holy study? Will ing good, all the world over.-Rotnot this knowledge, like all other, land Hill. be progressive? It may at first be compared to the feeble glimmering of dawn, which, though but one
CONSCIENCE. faint streak, is nevertheless a cer
Naturalists observe, that when tain presage of the meridian sun.
Let any man shut this book alto. the frost seizes upon wine, they are gether ; never enter a church-door, only the slighter and more watery where its truths and precepts are
parts of it that are subject to be explained ; nor never into the com
congealed ; but still there is a mighpany and conversation of those who ty spirit, which can retreat into itframe their lives by this book; and self, and there within its own comI will tell him he is hastening to the pass be secure from the freezing land of unalleviated sorrows.
On impression of the element round the other hand, let him read this about it: and just so it is with the book for edification, to learn the spirit of man; while a good conway to heaven; let him carefully science makes it firm and impeneattend upon the preaching of the trable, outward affliction can no gospel : converse and hold sweet blast of wind can freeze up the
more benumb or quell it, than a counsel with the excellent ones of the earth, and imitate their exam.
blood in a man's veins, or a little ple ; and I will tell him he is not shower of rain soak into his heart, far from the kingdom of heaven. and quench the principle of life God never did, nor never will, with
itself.--South. hold his blessing and the influences of his Spirit from those who diligently seek him.- Irving.
Six Sermons on the Nature, Occa- have given to the lowest class in
sions, Signs, Evils, and Reme- the community, a class most under dy, of Intemperance. By LYMAN the dominion of appetite, a politBEECHER, D. D. Boston, Crock- ical consequence, which enables er & Brewster, and J. Leavitt, them to • break in sunder the New-York, 1827. pp. 107. 12 bands, and cast away the cords,”
which kept them back from excess; Discourses on Intemperance, preach- the abundant prosperity also, which
ed in the church in Brattle Square, has flowed in upon us, since we Boston, April 5, 1827, the day of became an independent nation, has annual Fast, and April 8, the made every qualification easy, and Lord's Day following. By JOHN rendered those things, which were G. PALFREY, A. M. Pastor of formerly luxuries, common as our the church in Brattle Square. daily bread. From these causes, Nathan Hale. Congress street, intemperance has increased for thir. 1827. pp. 111. 18mo.
ty or forty years past, with unexAn Address, delivered before the ampled rapidity.
Massachusetts Society for the Our peculiar circumstances acSuppression of Intemperance, count for the fact, that the inMay 31, 1827. By CHARLES crease of this evil has been more SPRAGUE. Boston. Bowles & rapid in our own, than in other Dearborn. pp. 30. 8vo.
countries, without supposing our
people more unprincipled, or more The progress of intemperance in debased, than theirs. While the our country, was for a long period poor Irishman, whose chief joy it is gradual and almost imperceptible. that he can add a piece of meat to It is within the memory of some his potatoes on St. Patrick's, has now living, that drunkenness was a not the means of forming and concrime of rare occurrence, and an tinuing a habit of intemperance, and habitual drunkard an object of uni- the English labourer, who can only versal disgust and detestation; that afford himself a little indulgence ardent spirits were not considered once a week, is under the same in. necessary, to afford glee to the so- ability, the poorest of our inhabicial circle, or strength to the labor- tants, by an hour's labour, can proer ; that many large farmers gath- cure the means of intoxication, and ered their hay and harvest with a even our beggars can gratify their single gallon, and still more with unnatural appetite and riot in scenes none at all. Though ardent spirits of excess. The price of labor is so have always been within the means high, and that of spirits so low, that of the great mass of our population, we can drink almost as freely as if yet the strict morality of our fore- our rivers and streamlets ran down fathers, their sacred regard to law, with the intoxicating liquid. and their faithful execution of it, The causes, which began to ac held this vice for a long time in celerate the progress of intempecheck, and almost excluded shame- rance, were, for a while, unobserful excess. But the strictness of ved, or were regarded as irresistitheir morality has passed away, our ble, and the extent to which they political revolutions and dissen- were proceeding was not appretions have relaxed the restraints of hended. The wise and the good law, our new modelld constitutions looked on, and lamented the evil,
and knew not which way to turn atic, and persevering measures, to themselves, or where to look for a arrest the march of the common enremedy ; till at length it became so emy; and that the pressure of the alarming, they felt that something calamity upon the community is so must be done ; that inaction would felt, as to promise a more general be a quiet acquiescence in the ruin co-operation of the friends of our of our country, and a tame surren- country, and of humanity. The dry of the inestimable privileges American Society for the promotion transmitted to us by our fathers. of Temperance has come into exisThe inquiry was made, with in- tence with fair auspices ; its title creasing solicitude, what remedies is unobtrusive; the field before it is could be found to stay the plague ; immense, and the commencement and some insulated efforts were of its operations has reanimated the made. Doctor Rush, at the request hopes of the friends of reform. It of an ecclessiastical body, we be is a subject of gratulation, that so lieve, published his excellent essay many men of distinguished talents in 1810. About sixteen years since, and influence have volunteered a committee was appointed to devise their services in this good cause. measures to produce a reformation, We hail the authors at the liead who reported to the General Asso. of this article, as among the foreciation of Connecticut in 1812. most in the list of these champions. This report suggested a system of We shall give a brief account of measures, which were recommen- their productions, interspersed and ded by the Association, and follow- followed by such remarks as may ed with considerable effect, in vari- appear to us pertinent. ous parts of this and other states. These writers traverse substanArdent spirits were banished pretty tially the same ground, though they extensively from the meetings of ec- do not describe with equal minute. clessiastical bodies, and from the ness the same parts. They all treat hospitable board of many families ; of the causes, evils, and remedies, societies were forned to secure the of intemperance. Mr. Palfrey has execution of the laws; ministers considered more particularly than preached, pamphlets were publish- the others the extent of the evil, ed, and the able pages of the Pan- and has furnished us with a number oplist were devoted to the cause of of valuable documents on the subreformation. These measures were ject. Dr. Beecher has defined attended with considerable effect. the nature of intemperance ; he has But from the fact, that compara- drawn the line of demarkation, to tively few entered into them with admonish the unwary of the daninterest, and pursued them with gerous ground; he has also furnishpersevering energy, and from the vi- ed the signs of its incipient stages, olent opposition made to “moral so- and the various steps of its progress, cieties," they failed of that success to its fearful termination. which was hoped and anticipated. The extent of this evil deserves The exertions of the most ardent particular attention. friends of reforın flagged, and the body of our citizens are not aware cvil, though somewhat checked, still of the greatness of its prevalence. continued its desolating progress. Its progress has been so gradual,
But we rejoice that of late, the one victim after another bas fallen friends of reform seem to be inspir- so silently, that scenes of desolaed with new courage ; that a new tion have, almost unawares, become impulse is given to benevolent ef- familiar to their eyes; and they fort on this subject, which affords a have passed along with the current. prospect of more extended, system- and have not paused to reflect, and