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can I rest a hope of acceptance? Where? Oh! where can I go, to catch a distant glimpse of the rising dawn of bliss ?"
"It is usual," said the Rev. Mr. S, " for a person who is just awakened to a belief, and a reception of the truth, to suppose that its consolations are placed beyond his reach; while his mind stands exposed to the fury of all its awful denunciations: but this is a delusion which fear practises on the imagination. In the operations of truth on the heart, there is a wise process observed on the part of the great invisible Agent; and as the first convictions of guilt are inseparably connected with the last manifestations of sovereign love, by an intermediate series of impressions, you ought not to conclude that the Lord has shewed you the evil of sin, your danger, and the necessity of an interest in the atonement made by Jesus Christ, on purpose to render your final state of condemnation the more awful! Oh! no, these moral discoveries which so deeply depress the soul, which torture and agonize its feelings, and bring over it such awful forebodings, precede the communications of divine mercy, and are intended to prepare you for their enjoyment. These strong desires, which now spring up, as spontaneously in your breast, were enkindled there by that Divine Spirit, who will lead you to the source of all joy and peace in believing and you will ultimately see a harmony of design, and a continuity of operation, rising out of the present scene of apparent disorder, and indescribable misery; which will excite your astonishment, no less than your gratitude. You have now, my dear friend, to fix your attention on Jesus Christ, who is able and willing to save to the uttermost, all them that come unto God by him. What encouragement has he given you to do it? In what consolatory language does he address you, (Matt. xi. 28.) Come unto all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. And lest you should suppose, that, that invitation was in any sense designed for the exclusive relief of those to whom it was originally given, he closes the vision of mercy with language
equally encouraging, (Rev. xxii. 17.) And the Spirit and the bride say, Come. And let him that heareth say, Come. And let him that is athirst come. And whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely. Then why should you doubt? why should you pause? why should you continue to linger, as around the promises of salvation, and not embrace them as the source of your comfort? not, I am conscious, because you disapprove of that mysterious plan which God hath revealed for the promotion of human bliss ; but because you consider yourself too unworthy to come into his presence, to solicit the favours he is waiting to bestow. This, so far is correct; you are unworthy, but not unwelcome; you are unworthy, but not unfit ;-for
All the fitness he requireth,
We now closed the interview in social prayer and retired, participating in those joys, which angels feel, when they see one sinner brought to repentance. This conversion is a decisive proof of the divine origin of Christianity, for what human power could have effected such a moral revolution in such a mind? In the sermon* which curiosity led her to hear, there was no force of argument employed to convince the judgment; no overpowering eloquence to subdue the prejudices, no splendid decorations ofstyle, to captivate and allure the taste: but merely a simple interrogation sent forth, which has often fallen from the same lips, without producing any effect, except to excite the contempt of such a cast of mind. From whence then did it derive its resistless energy on this occasion, unless from the concurring testimony of Him, who deposits the sublime truths of salvation in earthen vessels, that the excellency of the power, when they take effect may appear to be of God, and not of man.
The author was present when the sermon was delivered, heard the sentence, and is still in the habit of calling on the lady, whose conversion he has described, when he visits the neighbourhood in which she is now living.
Stereotyped by J. HADDON ; and Printed by J. S. HUGHES, 63, Paternoster Ron.
"Yes, they were confounded and amazed when they heard the apostles speaking in different languages; but this miracle, so far from effecting their conversion, merely excited the ridicule of many who mocking said, These men are full of new wine. Acts ii. 13. Page 8.
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POPULAR THEOLOGICAL QUESTIONS,
EXAMINED AND DISCUSSED.
"The communication of the Spirit, to render the Gospel efficacious, becomes a standing ordinance of heaven, and a full security for its final triumph over every opposing force." HALL.
As we were returning home from N-Castle, where we had been surveying the ruins of ancient grandeur, and talking of the heroes and events of "olden times," we overtook Mr. Stevens, who consented to go and spend the evening with us. After tea, our conversation turned on the rise, progress, and character of Methodism; when Mr. John Roscoe gave it as his unqualified opinion, that its introduction into this kingdom, was no less fatal to the honour, and harmony of the church, than the irruptions of the Goths and Vandals, from the trackless deserts of the north, were to the literature and sovereignty of the old Roman Empire. "It came," he observed "at a period when no danger was apprehended; and from the meanness of its appearance, and its entire destitution of the attractions of intelligence, or of virtue; no one could calculate on its exciting that commotion, or acquiring that degree of influence over the public mind, which its history records, and which we all ought deeply to deplore. To extirpate this fatal heresy, or to arrest it in its destructive course, I fear," he added, " is now impossible; but we ought certainly to be on our guard, lest we should accelerate its march, either by that supineness which neglects to defend the passes; or that neutrality which looks with indifference on the conquests of an enemy, who leaves us in the undisturbed possession
of our own territory. The Rev Mr. C. in his discourse on Sunday night, displayed rather too much of his own spirit, for the sanctity of the pulpit, and his opinion on baptismal regeneration, may require a revision; but, Sir," addressing his brother, " I think you must agree with him in his remarks on the preposterous conversions which are the boast of our modern fanatics. Indeed, what man of learning, or of taste, can read the periodical journals of enthusiasm. without disgust, and if he were not thoroughly established in his belief of the divine origin of our holy religion, he must inevitably become a scèptic."
Mr. Roscoe. "Men of learning and of taste with some few honourable exceptions, very rarely discover any strong attachments for the humiliating doctrines, or the self-denying precepts of that holy religion, whose divine origin they professedly admit. The religion, which they admire, is not the religion of the Scriptures, but one modified, and adapted to their passions and propensities. Would the celebrated poets, or prose writers of modern times, who praise in harmonious couplets, or well turned periods, the religion of their country, welcome that religion, if she were to disengage herself from the attractions of the mitre, and the associations of sacred altars, and antique buildings, and rise up before them in the simplicity of her attire, and the high authority of her voice, as when she first despoiled Greece and Rome of their elegant mythology; and demand from them repentance towards God, and faith in our Lord Jesus Christ? If she were to speak to them of sin, of their sin, she would excite the smile of ridicule; if she were to urge on them the necessity of repentance, lest they likewise perish, she would provoke the sarcasm of scorn; and if she were to require from them that faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, which by its own reaction purifies, and ennobles the human soul, she would be discarded, as a fanatic, not less to be despised and rejected, than the enthusiasm of Methodism. But though the Rev. Mr. C. reprobated in very strong terms, the preposterous conversions of the fanatics of modern