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tioned. In the brief illustration clined to universalism, from their of that text, the author says,
Happy were the human pair amidst this delightful Paradise, until a certain preacher, in his journey, came that way, and disturbed their peace and tranquillity, by endeavouring to reverse the prohibition of the Almighty, as in our text, Ye shall not surely die."
2. It is a very impressive and convincing sermon. What could more strongly prove the falsehood of universalism, than to show from scripture, that the devil was its author and first preacher.
3. The satire, which runs through the sermon, is founded on truth and justice, and managed with Christian sobriety.
4. The sermon displays much originality. Although, while reading, we are ready to say, it is easy to make such a sermon; yet there are few men, who would ever have conceived the idea of opposing a universal preacher in such a way.
5. It is a very popular sermon. Of this there is sufficient proof
in the six editions of it which have been printed within two years.
6. It is a very useful sermon, especially to those, who want leisure, ability, or patience to follow with advantage a long chain of reasoning. The great argument here used, is not only unanswerable, but easily understood, and easily felt. And none can want leisure or patience to peruse a discourse, which may be distinctly read in 10 or 12 minutes; and none can think it too much to procure a sermon, which may be had for 3 or 4 cents. This little sermon may do much to preserve men from the delusion of error. It awakens men, in
pleasing dream, shows them who is their leader, and what has been the fatal end of following
The plan of the sermon is, to attend to the character of the old serpent as a preacher; to the doctrine he inculcated; the hearer addressed; and the medium or instrument of the preaching. In describing the character of the preacher mentioned in the text, these particulars are just noticed. 1. He is an old preacher. 2. He is a very cunning, artful preacher. 3. He is a very laborious, unwearied preacher. 4. He is a heterogeneous preacher. 5. He is a very presumptuous preacher. 6. He is a very successful preacher.
After several pertinent inferences, the sermon is closed with the following singular apology.
"As the author of the foregoing discourse has confined himself wholly to the character of Satan, he trusts no one will feel himself personally injured by this short sermon: but should any imbibe a degree of friendship for this aged divine, and think that I have not treated this Universal Preacher with that respect and veneration which he justly deserves, let them be so kind cheerfully retract; for it has ever as to point it out, and I will most been a maxim with me, Render unto all their dues.”
A Review of "the Transactions of the Parisian Sanhedrim"* in the Panorama, for August, 1807, concludes as follows:
"There are many curious cired in these transactions, which cumstances incidentally includwe are compelled to pass without mention. We should have
See page 224 of this No. Pan.
been glad had a work of equal authority been extant, on the subject of the general assembly of the Jews, said to have been held in Styria, about A. D. 1620-30. As the fact of that council having been held, or if it were held, of what passed in it, has been placed among apocryphal events, we cannot give it so much reality as to compare it with the present: we are, therefore, thankful for the appearance of the volume before us; and doubt not but the interest attached to the subject will secure to the ingenious, and we believe faithful translator, an adequate reward for his labour and diligence.
"The reflections to which this subject gives occasion are ecclesiastical and political. Will the Jews in the various dominions of the earth be induced to relinquish their expectation of Messiah Ben-David? We presume, they will not the very dispersion of this people prevents them from being of one mind and not till the time comes, which is known only to the Supreme, will the purposes of their conservation be disclosed. Will they abandon, in other countries, their ideal superiority, and exaltation over the nations? Certainly not the persuasion has the current of too many centuries in its favour. But in a political view, Bonaparte may answer no trifling purposes by patronizing the Jews. Cromwell gained something by favouring them, though not all he wanted; and Bonaparte is treading in his steps. If we might indulge conjecture, as to his purposes, we should hint at supplies of mo
ney (without interest!) past, present, or to come; at the mercantile agency of this people, among all the nations of the earth; but, especially, at intelligence of what is passing in other countries; an enormous and incalculable extent of the principle of espionage! The Grand Seignior never was so well served as when his (unknown) agents were Jews, in every court of Europe: they knew that the fate of thousands of their brethren depended on the nod of a capricious tyrant: they laboured, therefore, diligently to render that nod favourable. When the reader has considered what we have said on the circumstances of Spain and Portugal, and the influence of opinion on political events; when he considers the immense advantage which a knowledge of the strength and weakness of all governments, derived from unsuspected, yet ever vigilant agents, would confer on an active character; when he looks back to what was, in fact, the foundation of the extensive control exercised by the papal power; what was the rise and support of the influence enjoyed for a long while by the order of Jesus; and what may be accomplished by the same principle with the improvements of modern policy, he will see in the conduct of the Emperor and King, in the intended meeting of the GREAT SANHEDRIM in October next, and in the whole of Bonaparte's conduct with respect to the Jews, motives sufficient to actuate his policy, and more than sufficient to stimulate British vigilance to the utmost."
THE state of religion within the bounds of the General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church, is represented by that body in their Minutes of May, 1807, as follows:
The Assembly having heard from its members a circumstantial account of the state of religion, within their bounds, and parts adjacent, are of opinion, that during the last year, the cause of vital piety has in general been progressive.
Throughout a great part of the vast region to which the Assembly extended their inquiries new churches are forming, and those already formed are receiving successively additional members. Migrations from some parts, particularly those which are central in the state of Pennsylvania, reduce the churches, but furnish, on the southwestern frontier, the seeds of new Congregations.
In various congregations belong. ing to the Synod of New York and New Jersey, we are presented with evidences of almighty power and grace accompanying the word of God, and producing happy effects.
Similar effusions of the Holy Spirit on different churches under the care of the General Association of Connecticut and of the Convention of Vermont, likewise demand our offerings of fervent gratitude to God for his great mercies. These divine favours, though not widely extended in any particular district, are of great importance; and the more so, as they have extended their influence to the young men in one or more literary institutions; where are generally formed those characters on whom, under God, depend, in a great measure, the important concerns of the Church, and of the Nation.
in those parts, silent solemnity and deep impression pervade the saving work of God. And the churches throughout, including our brethren of the General Association of Connecticut, and of the Convention of Vermont, are harmoniously engaged
in the promotion of religion, and dwell in peace.
The late extraordinary revivals of religion in the south and west, appear to be gradually declining; leav ing, in our view, many fervent fol lowers and friends of the Saviour, who stand ready to do whatever their hands find to be done for the glory of God, and the salvation of their fellow men. Whilst these parts of the church exhibit sundry causes for serious and anxious solicitude, they still present to view, many whose convictions and pressing inquiries, give ground for comfortable expecta tions; and in various corners of this part of the vineyard, the operations of almighty power, and sovereign grace, arrest the attention, and demand thanksgiving.
Their Missionaries, in different parts, have manifested a zeal and industry equal to the expectations of the Assembly; and by their labours have, we trust, been instrumental in producing those great benefits to mankind, which will be the most grateful reward of the liberal contributions, which our people have made for Missionary purposes.
We also view with solicitous expectation, the gradual advances of two tribes of Indians, whose appar, ent disposition to subject themselves to the benign influences of civilizą. tion, literature and religion, though marked with their usual caution and suspicion, have made considerable progress, and exhibited favourable, appearances.
For these great blessings let God be praised.
But, alas in connexion with the review of these manifestations of di vine love and mercy, many humbling evidences of human depravity and weakness constrain us to painful remarks. The sincere worshippers of God, compared with the great mass of society, appear few: the important duties of domestic religion in many instances are neglected; and
in many are only partially attended to. The Assembly also deplore the obviously increasing dereliction of truth, which, in some parts, pervades all classes of society; the prevalence of the profanation of the sacred names of Jehovah; the violation of the Sabbath; and in many parts debasing intemperance in the use of ardent spir. its. They deplore likewise the prevalent inordinate attachment to the things, and to the friendship of the world.
We have still cause to lament, that in those situations where attendance is most convenient, and the advantages for religious improvement are great, many of our people forsake their religious assemblies on one part of the day. But above all, and in close and fatal union with this last and the preceding evils, they deplore the prevalence of unbelief; that state of mind which is enmity against God, reproaches his truth, and contemns the amiable glories of redeeming love.
In circumstances highly distinguished by the blessings of Heaven, both in a religious and civil view, especially when contrasted with the state of many nations; such evidences of ingratitude and impiety present alarming provocations to a holy God. They awfully increase our guilt, and rouse our fears. Surely the Lord is long suffering and of tender mercy; therefore amidst all our provocations we are permitted to view Zion rising with increasing glories and extension; and to see some late arrangements for increasing the number of pious and faithful ministers, opening à flattering prospect in this important
The Assembly, on the whole, praise God for the degree of success with which he has been pleased to crown their efforts for the extension of his kingdom, and the edification of the body of Christ.
And, relying on the liberal contributions, and pious co-operation of their people, both by their holy living and fervent prayer to God, desire to prosecute, under the encouragement with which they are favoured, with redoubled diligence, the great and interesting undertakings which have hitherto employed their cares and their labours."
Ar a meeting of the General Association of Connecticut in June, 1806, Inquiry was made with respect to the state of religion in the churches with which we have connexion, from which it resulted, that although much coldness and lukewarmness, in spiritual concerns, appear in many places, yet in others the spirit of vital piety eminently prevails, and various parts of the vineyard are watered and enriched with heavenly dews. The friends of real religion have much cause to render praise to the great Lord of the vineyard, and to persevere in prayer, that showers may descend in plentiful effusions.”
The business of missions is prose, cuted with great zeal, and a very desirable success by the churches of Connecticut. Nearly three thousand dollars have been contributed, during the year past, for the support of mis. sions, besides what has been receiv ed from the profits of the Evangelical Magazine.
Two acts of the General Association follow:
(1.) Whereas a few individuals in the ministry have openly denied the divinity and personality of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, Voted: That this Association, feeling it a duty to bear testimony against principles so subversive of the pillars of gospel truth, of vital piety and mo, rality, do recommend to their brethren in the State, earnestly to contend for the faith once delivered to the saints;-to hold no communion, and to form no exchanges in ministerial duties with preachers of this char, acter."
(2.) "Whereas the relation be. tween a minister and his people is one of the most solemn that can be formed in the world, Voted :-That this body do disapprove of the grow ing usage in the churches, by which this relation is dissolved without making public the true reasons of discontent in the parties; as tending, on the one hand, to shield the im moralities and erroneous opinions of a minister, and, on the other, to glosą over the unreasonable discontents and vices of a people."
Extract of a letter from the Rev. Mr. Jackson, Dorset, (Ver.) to one of the Editors of the Panoplist.
Res. and dear Sir,
THE interest, which the Editors of the Panoplist are pleased to take in the growth of our infant institution, is viewed with much gratitude by the friends of religion in this country, and particularly by the Trustees and members of the Evangelical Society. We read, with much pleasure and encouragement, your approbation of such of our proceedings as have come to your knowledge, and the frank assurances you give us of your future aid and influence. Your brotherly freedom in suggesting ways and means for the promotion of our design is very pleasing to the Trustees.
At the last meeting of the Board, we added to our charity list one more hopefully pious and promising youth; and the Trustees have the claims of some others now under their consideration. It is also to be noted with gratitude, that the Rutland Association, at their last meeting, were called to the pleasing, important work of examining and approbating for the ministry, four young men apparently endowed with more than an ordinary measure of that information and enlightened zeal, which promise usefulness in the vineyard of our Lord. One of these had been assisted in his education by the society. These events are very encouraging. At the present day, which seems like the fearful hour of the power of darkness, to behold talents and piety rallying round the standard of that Prince, who is the sign that shall be spoken against, must cheer the hopes of those, who wait for the salvation of our Israel. We may with confidence believe that, when the Lord shall give the word, great will be the company of those who publish it.
And should the Evangelical Society be succeeded, as instruments, in raising up and bringing forward a few of this great company, how pleasing would be their reward! We feel ourselves more and more bound to continue our
efforts in this noble work, that we may be approved to our recent and numerous benefactors, and above all to Him, who hath required of stew. ards, that they be found faithful.
For the liberal proposal of the Ed. itors to put all the Panoplists sold in Vermont on a footing which shall give the profits to our fund, I am requested by the Trustees and the Society to return you their hearty thanks. It affords them much pleasure and encouragement, both as they are well pleased with the publication, and as they indulge a strong hope that, in the way you propose, it may not only bring present instruction and comfort to the destitute, but be instrumentally raising up a succession of enlightened, spiritual instructors for them and their children.
The Panoplist continues to be well spoken of in this country. The clergy are well pleased with it. They esteem it one of the best publications of the age. What influence they have will be devoted to give it a currency, if its merit should not decline. Your affectionate brother, W. J.
By an edict of the Emperor of Chi, na, which bears the date, 1805, it appears that a persecution was at that time carrying on against the converts to Christianity. The edict admits the right of Europeans settled in China to practise their own relig ious usages, but states it as a settled law of the Empire, that they should not propagate their doctrines among the natives. In contempt of this law, Te-tien-tse (who it seems is a Catholic Missionary resident at Pekin of the name of Odeadato) had taught his doctrines to many persons, and had induced them to conform to his relig. ion, and had also printed in the Chinese character no less than thirty one books, with a view to seduce the minds of the simple peasantry. This is declared to be a very odious of fence, and Te-tien-tse is sentenced,