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to be tried, and admitted or rejected by those to whom God has given the charge of his courts; and who are responsible both to him and to the public for the manner in which public psalmody is conducted."Psalm-tunes," says an eminent Divine, ought to be solemn and grave; not vain, light, and airy, as if they were only designed to please and gratify a wanton and sensual mind. This would be to turn one of the most noble and spiritual duties of religion into a mere entertainment for the senses and fancies of carnal men,-to turn God's house into a theatre; and would desecrate his sacred worship, and make it distasteful to pious minds. The power of music is very great, and may be abused to bad purposes, as well as improved to holy ones; and therefore only such tunes must be used in God's house, as become his Majesty and Holiness, and the gravity and the spirituality of the worship in which we are engaged."
"All wise and sober persons,' observes BISHOP TAYLOR, "do find fault when the Psalmody, which is recommended by the practice of CHRIST and his Apostles, does sensibly pass farther into art, than into religion, and serves pleasure more than devotion; when it recedes from that native simplicity and gravity, which served the affections and holy aspirations of so many ages of the Church; when it is so conducted that it shall not be for edification; that is, when it is made so accurate and curious that none can join in it but musicians, and they also are not so recitative, they do not sing and express the words so plainly, that they which hear do understand; for by this means the greatest benefit and use of edification is lost."*
Let nothing, however, which has been said be construed into an intention to discourage the cultivation
to her services, that too great care cannot be taken to render it attractive, so that our "praise be comely" and devotional. As a holy means to great and noble ends, science is sacredly employed in giving it as much perfection as possible; for unless singing be so ordered as, in some measure, to be grateful to the ear, the ordinance will be exposed to contempt. "GOD is the God of order, and not of confusion."
genius, but is the effect of it; and Simplicity excludes not those modulations which form the best examples of psalmody, are all the productions of eminent genius, under the guidance of a proper sense of what is fit and becoming in the worship of GOD. Such must have been the airs in which the primitive Christians celebrated the praises of Christ; for Pagans were attracted by their singing to their churches, and were often deeply and effectually wrought upon by the service. By the musical services of the Roman church, before they became elaborate and artificial, powerful effects were produced upon those barbarous nations of Europe, whose conversion was effected by her missionaries. The music of LUTHER is well known; and many of the compositions of LEWIS GUADIMET, the ASAPH of the Genevan churches, have great merit. Nothing but the productions of real genius could have called forth those emotions which rendered psalmody so popular a service among the adherents of the Reformation, and so attractive to Papists themselves, that the singing of psalms was prohibited throughout France by a royal declaration.† And we have all witnessed the effects produced on whole congregations, when all have joined in a well
+ That was a noble act of a pious artizan of the town of Castres, in Upper Languedoc, who, when an officer showed him the declaration against singing psalms, in order to silence him, wrote at the bottom of the act the French version of Psalm xxxiv. 1: "1
and improvement of this part of will bless the Lord at all times: his praise
divine worship, both in families and in congregations. On the contrary, it is a religious ordinance of so high an antiquity, one which has been so signally owned of God for comforting and edifying his church, and for alluring even those who are without
• Ductor Dubitantium.
shall continually be in my mouth:"
"Jamais ne cesserai
De magnifier le Seigneur:
En ma bouche aurai son honneur
In the English version of Tate and Brady:
In trouble and in joy,
The praises of my God shall still
My heart and tongue employ." Many were grievously persecuted on this
VOL. I. Third Series. JANUARY, 1822.
adapted tune, and especially Luther's Old Hundredth Psalm Tune, to sing the high praises of our God.
Neither genius in composition, nor skill in execution, are therefore discouraged by the recommendation of simplicity in singing. This is a It is in complex common mistake. airs that genius is usually most absent; and in a rattling and noisy execution, that skill in execution is least employed.
Delightful as this service is, it has its corresponding dangers. The very means we take to engage our hearts with ardour to "give thanks unto God," may, by their appeal to steal our senses, away our attention, and leave our worship a "sounding brass and a tinkling cymbal,”.
"Vox, et præterea nihil."
"Let us take care that we be sincerely devoted to that GOD whose praises we sing. Let every grace have its proper and lively exercise. We must offer a reasonable service, understand and attend to the sense of what we sing, lest we be no 'wiser than the fowls of heaven,' who sing they know not what. We
must set ourselves as in the
to the solemnity of his worship, be-
On the contrary, we know, that if rightly performed, nothing is more acceptable to GOD our SAVIOUR. Wonderful, indeed, is his condescension, that when the "sons of the morning" still sing together, and surround his throne with hallelujahs, he should say to a child of earth, "Let me hear thy voice, for it is pleasant!" "Whoso offereth praise, glorifieth me."
The Sacred Harmony," in the present edition, is put into a form more convenient for general use; and it has been carefully revised and figured for organ, harpsichord, or piano-forte, by MR. CHARLES WESLEY.
London, Nov. 3, 1821.
• Eastcheap Lectures.
LETTER FROM THE REV. J. WESLEY TO MR.
has taken the charge of between thirty and forty children. There is therefore great need that God should put it into the hearts of some to come over to us, and labour with us in his harvest. But I should not desire any to come, unless on the same views and conditions with us,-without any temporal wages, other than food and raiment, the plain conveniences of life. For one or more, in whom was this mind, there would be full employment in the province, either in assisting MR. DELAMOTTE or me, while we were present here, or in supplying our places when abroad, or in visiting the poor people in the
smaller settlements, as well as at Frederica, all of whom are as sheep without a shepherd.
By these labours of love might any that desired it be trained up for the harder task of preaching the Gospel to the heathen. The difficulties he must then encounter, GoD only knows; probably martyrdom would conclude them: but those we have hitherto met with have been small, and only terrible at a distance. Persecution, you know, is the portion of every follower of Christ, wherever his lot is cast; but it has hitherto extended no farther than words, with regard to us, (unless in one or two inconsiderable instances:) yet it is sure, every man ought, if he would come hither, to be willing and ready to embrace (if God should see good) the severer kinds of it. He ought to be determined, not only to leave parents, sisters, friends, houses, and land, for
his Master's sake, but to take up his cross too, and cheerfully submit to the fatigue and danger of (it may be) a long voyage, and patiently to endure the continual contradiction of sinners, and all the inconveniences which it often occasions.
Would any one have a trial of himself, how he can bear this? If he has felt what reproach is, and can bear that for but a few weeks as he ought, I shall believe he need fear nothing. Other trials will afterwards be no heavier than that little one was at first; so that he may then have a well-grounded hope, that he will be enabled to do all things through CHRIST strengthening him.
May the GoD of peace himself direct you to all things conducive to his glory, whether it be by fitter instruments, or even by your friend and servant in CHRIST,
LETTER FROM THE LATE LADY MARY FITZGERALD TO MRS. FLETCHER.
Dec. 25th, 1797. MY VERY DEAR AND MUCH-VALUED
YOUR welcome letter did not reach me till long after the date. Many thanks for the account of those two happy boys, who have so soon finished their course, and are safely arrived out of all danger, to be for ever with our adorable SAVIOUR, whose presence makes fulness of joy. You ask me what the LORD has been speaking to me of late? Indeed, I seem to be only just beginning to peep into the wonders of redeeming Love. I am stupid, andslow of heart to believe; but he is so gracious, he will not give me up, and now and then gives me such glimpses of the astonishing transaction we are now commemorating, that I am for a moment lost in wonder, love, and praise; and my soul longs to be a temple for my GoD,-to be continually swallowed up in that one thought. But oh! what cause have I to complain of coldness and deadness, who ought to be burning with a flame of gratitude and adoration. If such a wretch as I am pardoned, justified, and in a state of salvation, surely heaven and earth must wonder at the
mercy and patience of my GOD,—yes, I trust, my GOD, my SAVIOUR, my REDEEMER, and my ALL. Sometimes I want every atom to be a tongue, to tell of his long-suffering, patience, love, and mercy: at other times I am so basely ungrateful, as to doubt of my interest in that precious, precious, all-atoning blood, though I know it is free for the vilest; and but too often so wandering and dead, that I cannot fix my thoughts: then I long to depart and be free from this burthen of clay, which keeps down my eager soul from mounting to the GOD I love and adore.
But I am ashamed to see how much I have written about myself, which your question has occasioned. By your account of MRS. CHILD, I fear (but, I ought not to say, I fear, though I pity her husband and children,) that she is by this time out of the body;-happy she, if it be so. I am thankful that our adorable LORD has brought ANNA SMITH and family safe through the furnace inwhich they were so long kept. I think I have heard you say you remembered something of MRS. BARR, who had her arm cut off, many years ago, at the shoulder
blade, and who, when she was put
My eyes ached so much after
"Prepare me, LORD, for thy right hand,
A worthy and respectable friend, hear-
"Freely, fully, justify me,
Give me eyes thy love to see." When she saw one of her children crying, she said, "Don't cry; rejoice,
rejoice, I am going home; this is
My eyes are now so fatigued and painful, that I can only see to beg you will give my love to MRS. YATES; pray give her one or of the enclosed papers, which I send you for distribution as you think proper. I must just tell you, lest you should not have heard it, that LORD DUNCAN Went to prayer before the battle, and said, he felt a confidence when he rose from his knees, that the LORD would give us the victory the moment it was over, before the deck could be cleared, he called up the whole crew to return GOD thanks, and says, he never saw any thing equal to the ardour of the whole crew on their knees, thanking our adorable GOD and SAVIOUR, while their safety was fresh on their minds. 0 that we had many such Admirals and Captains!-My love to all my dear Madeley friends, high and low, rich and poor, with many grateful thanks for the kind prayers of our blessed LORD's dear children. I hope I do not forget them in my poor way.
Farewell, my beloved friend! I scarcely see or know what I write; but I know I am, at all times, your truly grateful and affectionate, tho' unworthy, Friend and Servant,
ON THE LORD'S PRAYER.
To the Editor of the Wesleyan-Methodist Italics, or, where they consist in omissions, by the insertion of a blank space.
Magazine. TAE very incorrect manner in which the LORD'S PRAYER is repeated by some persons, is most improper and unpleasant. With the intention of amending such improprieties, I shall put together a few of the mistakes, omissions, and additions, which I have witnessed. And for the benefit of all whom it may concern, I request you to favour me, by publishing in your Magazine the subjoined view of these foolish and censurable variations, which may be distinguished by printing them in
Our Father, who art in heaven, hollowed be thy name. Thy king
Thy will be done on earth, as it is done in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread; and forgive us all our truspasses, as we forgive them that truspass against us. leave us not in tem-tation, but deliver us from all evil: For thine is the kingdom, the power, .-Amen. and the glory, for ever
THE ELEVENTH COMMANDMENT:
Tuis great and good man, in crossing the Channel from Ireland to this country, was wrecked on some part of the coast of Wales. On this disastrous occasion, after having reached the shore, he made the best of his way to the house of a clergyman, who resided not far from the spot on which he was cast. Without communicating his name, or the diguified station which he held in the church, the Archbishop introduced himself as a brother clergyman in distress, and stated the particulars of his misfortune. The Cambrian- Divine, suspecting
his unknown visitor to be an im-
eleven," replied the Archbishop,
ON THE NUMBER OF PLANTS.
miration would be excited to the ut-