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less, to the ground. When he had revived a little, all le coidd do was to raise a fervent prayer, that God would withdraw himself from him, or that he must perish under a view of his ineffable glory. When able to reflect on his situation, he could not but abhor himself as a weak and despicable worm ; and seemed to be overcome with astonishment, that a creature so unworthy and insufficient, had ever dared to attempt the instruction of his fellowmen in the nature and attributes of so glorious a Being, staying his usual time, some of his elders went in search of him, and found him prostrate on the ground, unable to rise, and inca*pable of informing them of the cause. They raised him up, and, after some time, brought him to the church, and supported him to the pulpit, which he ascended on his hands and knees, to the no small astonishment of the congregation. He remained silent a considerable time, carnesty supplicating Almighty God to hide himself from him, that he might be enabled to address his people, who were by this time lost in wonder to know what had pro luced this uncommon event. His prayers were heard, and he became able to stand up, by holding the desk. He now began the most affecting and pathetic address that the congregation had ever received from him. He gave a surprizing account of the views he had of the infinite wisdom of God; and greatly deplored his own incapacity to speak to them concerning a Being so infinitely glorious beyond all his powers of description. He attempted to show something of what had been discovered to him of the astonishing wisdom of Jehovalı, of which it was impossible for human nature to form adequate conceptions. He then broke out into so fervent and expressive a prayer, as greatly to surprize the congregation, and draw tears from every eye. A sermon followed, which continued the solenn scene, and made very lasting impressions on all the hearers.
The great increase of communicants in his church was a good evidence of his pastoral care and powerful preaching, as it exceeded that of most churches in the synod; but his labours were not confined to the pulpit. He was indefatigable in his endeavours to communicate in private families a savour of the knowledge of spiritual and divine things. In his parochial visits he used regularly to go through his congregation in order. He earnestly pressed it on the conscience of parents to instruct their children at home, so as gradually to expand their minds, and prepare them for the reception of the more practical doctrines of the gospel. In this, Mr. T. bas presented an excellent example to his brethren in the ministry; for certain it is, that more good may be done in a congregation by this domestic mode of instruction, than any one can imagine who has not maile the trial.
[To be concluded in our next.]
AN ORIGINAL LETTER
FROM THE LATE REV. THOMAS JONES,
TO MR. T-- S“ My dear Brother,
66 I Am much concerned to hear of your present distress; but I hope you will soon experience a truly happy deliverance. I find you are fearful that you have committed the unpardonable sin :-- if yon bad, depend upon it, you would not be at all concerned about it. This is the insinuation of the enemy of souls, who, for a while, is suffered to buffet you ; but, remember for your comfort, he is a conquered foe, and cannot go beyond his chain. I doubt not but you will shine brighter for being in the furnace of Affliction. In the mean time, do not entertain hard thoughts of God, nor write bitter things against yourself, your present distress is an argument of the Redeemner's love, “who scoutgeth every son whom he receiveth."
" I trust, the Lord is now purifying your spirit, and purging away your dross. O may this affliction have its perfect work! Jesus is emptying you from sin and self, that you may be filled with the fulness of his righteousness and salvation. Believe not the iusinuations of the enemy; but tell him, he was a liar and 56 a murderer from the beginning !" Go to the throne of grace, throw yourself at the feet of Immanuel, even if you have not a
resolve, if you perish, to perish at his feet, and you shall soon experience his love and tender mercy, and sweetly find, that
“ He knows what sore temptations mean,
For he hath felt the same." The bruised reed be will not break; and he will raise the smoking flax to a flame.
My beloved brother, accept these lines from him who bears you much upon his heart. Omay God support you! - Jesus comfort you! My feeble prayers shall not be wantiug. I doubt not but you shall shortly find“ all joy and peace in believing." Let me again entreat you to throw yourself at the feet of Jesus; apply to him, not as an enemy, but as a kind Friend and tender Brother.
“ That you may be enabled to view him in this amiable and endearing light, is the hearty prayer of your real friend and affectionate brother
in our joint Mediator, Epiphany, 1756.
word to say ;
No. II *.
Let us examine the providence of God towards his church. He designs to display his sovereignty, holiness, grace, &c. and to convince men that the atonement of Christ and the sanctifying influences of the Holy Spirit are absolutely necessary, in order to salvation.
Doubtless, the angels were astonished at Satan's success against our first parents; and more so at the promise that was given them, that the seed of the woman should bruise the serpent's head.
The almost universal apostacy before the flood, displayed the depravity of human nature; and the deluge demonstrated the awful justice of God. The apostacy after the flood, proved that judgments cannot reclaim, much less convert, sinners. As God did not intend a second destruction of all mankind, he proceeded to call Abraham, that in him and his posterity the knowledge of the true God might be preserved. To render his grace
and power the more illustrious, he selected him out of a people who were violently addicted to idolatry; from which this Father of the Faithful does not appear to have been quite free.
Constant intercourse with idolaters is the ready way to become such. Wherefore, Gol commanded Abrabam to forsake his country, and dwell in Canaan ; and for the same reason, fixed his settling there; commanding him to dwell in tents, which rendered his removal from one part of the country to another' casy, and therefore frequent. The wisdom of this direction appears from the history of Lot, who fixed his residence in Sodom, where the morals of all his family were totally corrupted.
However, dwelling in tents would only do for the rude and early ages of the world, when population was comparatively small, and the number of the redeemed before Christ, would be limited to only a few individuals at a time. Moreover, the worshippers of the true God would be too few to prepare the Gentiles for receiving the gospel, which was a very principal end of the calling the Jews.
Abraham's posterity could not increase to a nation while they dwelt in Canaan. Some retreat must, therefore, be provided, where they might dwell safely, and multiply rapidly. Egypt was fixed upon for that purpose. In Egypt they were in danger of being incorporated with the Egyptians, and perverted to their idolatry. This was prevented by the barbarous treatment they received,
* For No. I, see our Magazine for August last. This Paper was to have followed immediately; but has been mislaid.
ON PROVIDENCE. To impress the Israelites with a dread of idolatry, the Canaan. ites were devoted to destruction; and to hinder them from forming connexions with their neighbours, which might prove injurious to their religion, various laws were given, for the express purpose of separating them from all the other nations; and God never failed to punish them severely whenever they introduced the worship of strange gods, however patiently he might bear with their other provocations, that they might be faithful depositaries of the truth for the benefit of the world, though they appear sometimes to have derived but little benefit from it thema selves.
The four great monarchies, by scattering the Jews over at least halt the known world, served to inform the Heathen that an illustrious personage should be born, who would be a blessing to all mankind; and the translation of the Scriptures into Greek, which was almost a universal language, put them in possession of all the information concerning the Messiah that the Jews themselves had obtained. An expectation of the Messiah's appearance being thus excited, he was born in the fulness of time.
The destruction of Jerusalem, the judgments which have pursued the Jews ever since, and the calamities which overthrew the Roman Einpire, shew is the danger of opposing Christ and persecuting his people.
The Roman Catholic and Mahometan apostacies demonstrate the necessity of the Holy Spirit's agency; for the gospel itself, though clear and luminous as a sun-beam, will be eclipsed and extinguished if unsupported by his almighty power; and the very extensive apostacy, after Religion had flourished to an unexampled degree (which appears to be foretold in the 20th chapter of Revelatiops) will furnish the last and most convincing proof of it; and then the general judgment will disclose every secret, and rectify every seeming defect.
Redemption is an amazing subject! it exercises all the attributes of Deity at work! To atchieve it, the world was made; and all the wheels of Providence move in subserviency to it. How much are we indebted to the Bible! The
infidel who scorns it, owes to it the little knowledge that he has. Our forefathers were as barbarous as oiler Heathens; and we are indebted to the Bible for all the advantages we possess. Let us bind it to our hearts, and make it our chainber counsellor.
Let us now examine the history of Joseph, which will convince us that God pays as much attention to the welfare of individual believers, as to that of the church; that he has closely linked the welfare of the church and of private Christians together; and that he exactly adapts a person for the work he designs him to perform.
The timily of Jacob must go down into Egypt, yet not be incorporated with the Egyptians, and ba ře a portion of land al
lotted them, capable of containing an immense multitude of persons; and Joseph must go down thither to execute the gracious intentions of God: his brethren were therefore permitted to sell him. If he had continued in Potiphar's family, he might in: deed have been saved himself, yet could not have acted the important part which was allotted him. Such is the infirmity of human nature, that the amazing dignity and power to which he was suddenly elevated would have made him proud, and proved injurious to his piety, had he not been first severely disciplined in the school of Adversity. During his imprisonment in the dungeon, he acquired a large stock of true wisdom. The imprisonment, dreams, &c. of Pharaoh's butter and baker, were the means of delivering him from prison. Yet, had he been set at liberty merely by the butler's interest, he would have moved in an humble sphere, or risen to preferment by slow degrees. Pharaoh's dream, his interpretation of it, and the excellent advice which he gave, caused him to be looked up to as superior to the common race of men. The famine sent the Israelites to him; and he was now furnished with sufficient wisdom and power to dispose of them properly.
We see that God makes use of the sins of men as well as of their virtues ; yet this does not excuse the sinner. He is punished! for the sin he committed ; and God is glorified for bringing good out of it.
Let us learn to be satisfied with our condition. Amidst all the numberless and important affairs of Heaven and Earth, God pays particular attention to the meanest of his people! Every one is in the best place for getting good.
W. W. Wotton under Edge.
ON SEEING A REMARKABLE FUNERAL.
O Death, how rapid is thy course! - how resistless thine arm ! Not a day, not an hour, passes in which thou art not brandishing thy destructive scythe, and mowing down hundreds of the human race ! and so quick is the succession in which they fall, that we can hardly finish the recital of one tale of woe ere another claims the sympathetic tear! How oft hast thou separated those who were united by the strongest, tenderest ties, and, as it were, borne off in cruel triumph one half of a wedded heart, while the other was left to mourn the dreadful breach, and consume, in disconsolate lamentation, its solitary hoars ! This has been thy common practice; but, in the case before me, thou hast varied the scene, and presented us with a singular spectacle. Behold, those two sable hearses which, in solemn and slow procession, follow close upon each other, they contain