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REV. JOSEPH ALLEINE.
In the lives of holy men, says the venerable BAXTER, we see God's image, and the beauties of holiness, not only in precept, but in reality and practice-not pictured, but in substance. And holiness in visible realities, is apt to affect the world more deeply, than in portraiture and precept only.
This excellent divine, Mr. Alleine, was born at Devizes, in Wiltshire, England, in the year 1633. At a very early age, his great piety and love of learning displayed themselves. Even in his infancy, he discovered a singular sweetness of disposition, and a remarkable diligence in every thing in which he was employed. During his childhood he had deep convictions, and in his eleventh year, was noticed by the family as being zealous for religion. He was about that age when he commenced the practice of private
prayer; and in the discharge of this duty he was so sincere and fixed as not to permit himself to be disturbed by the accidental approach of any person into his retirement. His thoughts were powerfully directed, and his mind providentially influenced towards the exercise of the ministry, by the death of his elder brother, Rev. EDWARD · ALLEINE, who was greatly esteemed as a worthy minister of the Gospel. While the tender heart of a father was yet bleeding under the loss of a beloved son, Joseph earnestly requested permission to succeed his deceased brother as one of Christ's standard bearers. His father, therefore, with the view of educating him for the important work of the Christian ministry—a work to which he afterwards devoted his life, his men. tal talents, and his worldly property-sent him to a good school, that he might be instructed in classical education. In his classical attainments he made great progress.
At the age of sixteen he was sent to Lincoln College, Oxford; and in 1651 was removed to Corpus Christi College, a Wiltshire scholarship being there vacant. “While at college,” says one of his biographers, “ALLEJNE was distinguished for his assiduity in the pursuit of his studies, for the gravity of his temper, and for that
amiable disposition which made him ready to as. sist others in cases where his own industry and greater endowments gave him a superiority. Here he might soon have attained the distinction and benefits of a fellowship; this, however gratifying to his ambition, and important to his support in life, he declined for the humble station of a chaplain, 'being pleased,' as we are told, with the opportunity afforded him of exercising his gift in prayer.' In the career of piety, affection, and self-denial which marked his life, perhaps there is no instance in which he manifested more disdistinctly that spirit which raised him above the world, and marked him as a devoted disciple of the Lord Jesus Christ.”
In 1653 he was admitted Bachelor of Arts, and became a tutor in the institution to which he was 'attached. In 1655 he left college for the purpose of entering more fully upon his high and holy calling—the preaching of the Gospel. In the same year he became co-pastor with the Rev. GEORGE NEWTON, minister at Taunton, Somersetshire, and soon after married an amiable and pious lady. His income being small, he determined on becoming a tutor, and very soon had a great number of pupils, some of whom became graduates in divinity, placed under his care, and
who, in after life, repaid him for his anxiety, by their gratitude and affection, and usefulness. He was assisted in increasing his income by Mrs. Alleine, who kept a ladies' boarding school, in which he took great interest. In his work as a minister of the Gospel, he was very assiduous and laborious. He was incessantly laboring for the good of his people. Public instruction by preaching and catechising did not satisfy his enlarged desires for their salvation: but he made it a regular practice to visit from house to house, and to speak to each individual in the different families, on the subject of religion, and the salvation of their souls. Having approved himself in this employment as a man of God for seven years, he was called to exemplify, in a different manner,
graces he had received. Before the passing of the unwise and persecuting Act of Uniformity, he was very importunate, day and night, in prayer, that his way might be made plain before him; and that he might not desist from his appointed work of proclaiming the everlasting Gospel. Though he seemed so moderate as to induce his wife and other intimate friends to think that he would conform, yet when he saw the clauses of the act, viz. of assent and consent, and renouncing the covenant-he was fully
satisfied in his mind, and threw in his lot with two thousand of his brethren, who then became nonconformists.
Not considering his ejectment as a disqualification for preaching the Gospel in places to which he might have access, he continued to exercise his ministry by preaching in private houses, and visiting the families of his parishioners, as had been his custom. He also visited many villages and obscure places near large towns, from which the appointed ministers had fled. Wherever he went, the Lord blessed his labors to the conversion of many souls, while others were encouraged to "hold fast their profession without way. ering.” In acting thus he was narrowly watched, and often threatened, but was providentially preserved from danger much longer than he expected. He would sometimes say to his friends, “If it please God to grant me three months' liberty before I am taken to prison, I shall account myself favored by him, and shall with greater cheerfulness go, after I have done more work for him." In this he was indulged. On the 26th May, 1663, he was committed to Ilchester gaol, where, after being treated with great indige nity, together with seven ministers and fifty quakers, he was indicted at the assizes, for freach