« PreviousContinue »
Tue design of the present volume is not to furnish amusement to the gay, and the giddy. A walk is proposed. But it forms no part of our plan to lead the reader through the splendid fields of imagination and taste, or over verdant lawns and along the ambrosial walks of earthly pleasure. We hope we have some relish for the beauties of nature. We trust we are not altogether insensible to the charm of magnificent scenery. We love to stand upon the mountain peak, and behold the awful sublimities of creation that cluster around us in forms of Alpine grandeur. We love to descend the mountain side that overlooks some far spreading vale, which stretches with unwonted loveliness before the eye traversed, through its whole extent, by a gently flowing, silvery stream, where in the distance, we an see bold uplands, covered with forests which wave their tops in the light breeze. We love to take some such commanding spot, from which we can gaze upon the surrounding landscape watch the limpid waters that sparkle from the rock---hear the murmur of the bees in the still noon-observe the slow flight of the
City of the great King. crane, or the upward movements and sublime steerage of the eagle, as he rises from the summit of the rocks and wings his way upward, till he appears like a dark speck in the sunlight. We love to be placed amid such a scene of enchantment, to inhale the aromatic scent that comes from the neighboring field, and quaff the fragrance of the balmy air—while the sound of distant voices, or notes of music, are borne floating on the breeze to our ear!
But it forms no part of our plan in this proposed walk, to conduct the reader forth to a survey of the scenes and beauties of nature. Still it is hoped that the walk, which we in. vite him to take along with us, will not be without interest.
The scenes through which we would conduct him are seri. ous and grave. We desire him to contemplate along with us, objects and institutions that possess moral beauty. In this walk, we would have him fix his eye upon the foundation, and appendages, and beauty, and strength—upon the towers, and palaces, and bulwarks of a city which God himself has reared.
We would also have him observe its walls, upon which is written Salvation, and its gates, upon which is inscribea? Praise.*
We ask him to stand with us beside,
-Siloa's brook that flows
and after having gazed there awhile, to walk thence to the holy mount, to survey the city of the Great King—the city of our God in the mountain of his holiness.. Beautiful for situation, and the joy of the whole earth is Mount Zion. God is known in her palaces for a refuge.t
Come, then, along with us--walk about Zion, and go round about her : tell the towers thereof. Mark ye well her bulwarks, consider her palaces, that
ye may tell it to the generation following
Or to drop this metaphoric language, we propose in this volume to direct the attention of the reader to certain facts, connected with the existence and constitution of the christian church, and especially that branch of it, in whose communion we have the happiness of being placed. This we purpose to