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lation, having washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb.'
How happy are those that die in the faith of Jesus! What sacred peace, what divine transports, what emotions of love, of joy, do they then experience! Ås the outward man perishes, the inward man gains strength and vigour. The bed of death dignifies the believer, and renders him an object worthy, the notice of men and angels. It is there that he appears victorious over the world; he is in the world, without taking a part in its concerns; he is in the body, without being attached to it; he rejoices in hope of the glory of God; he walks with tranquillity through the valley of the shadow of death; he fears no evil amidst all the objects of dread; for his God is with him, and supports him in his final hour. His faith penetrates through the clouds of mortality which yet surround him; he looks within the veil, and beholds his gracious Redeemer ready to receive him; he sees the eternal inheritance for which he so often sighed; he has in prospect the city of the living God, filled with the glory of his presence; he considers himself as on the borders of the heavenly land, the dwelling-place of the righteous, with whom he hopes shortly to unite in singing the Song of Moses and of the Lamb, for ever and ever.
The removal of those who have been eminent for piety and usefulness in the church of God, is an event which will deeply affect the minds of all who sincerely wish the prosperity of Zion. When those are taken away who have long been pilars in the house of the Lord, we may well tremble for the people. So many great lights extinguished, and such a numerous people deprived of their faithful pastors, is indeed a truly afflictive and alarmning providence to the church of God. It is true, the Lord has ihe residue of the Spirit in his own hand; and he can pour it forth upon whomsoever he will. It is his prerogative to take and leave, as seemeth him good. Shall he not do what he will with his own? At the death of these excellent men, let us not mourn, as those witliout hope. Let not the tear of sorrow flow for them; but rather let it be reserved for the church of Christ, and especially for the church of England, in this still benighted island [Ireland] þereft, within a few years, of so many bold and eloquent chanpions for evangelical truth. Until within these few years, there were few, indeed, in the established church, who faithfully preached the gospel. Blessed be God for the wondrous change that hath ensued. The number of ministers of Jesus has increased from two or three into an host; and many, by their instrumentality, have been brought from darkness to light; and from the power of Satan unto God; they are in. creasing, notwithstanding a thousand insults and instances of oppression which they have received from their superiors,
and continual, endeavours to drive them out of the church. They hạve been obliged to submit to the offence of the cross. which cannoi cease; and they have laboured and not fainted; and so, I trust will continue to do,-hailing reproach, and welcoming shame in the faithful discharge of their office; and if this be to be vile, they will dare to be 'viler still.'
Spirits of Luther and of Calvin, wake!
Want healing; our expiring lamp, your oil.' May the remaining army of confessors eclipse, by their zeal and labours, all their predecessors ! May they be enabled to brave every suffering and reproach for the gospel's sake! go boldly without the camp to meet the torrent of persecution, which all who will preach Christ crucified to a proud, self-righteous, gainsaying world, must ever expect to meet for their fidelity
REFLECTIONS ON JOHN XIV. 6.
I am the way, and the truth, and the life. To be in this way, to understand this truth, and to possess this life, is that great concern which should engross our whole attention and our fervent anxiety. We are immortal creatures, are passing swiftly out of time; we are accountable to the Judge of all; and must soon enter the world of spirits.
1. Jesus Christ is the way. He is so, as it respects the doctrine wbich he taught, the atonement which he made, the example which he set, and the grace which he bestows. This blessed Prophet taught men the true knowledge of God, the necessity of regeneration, the nature and extent of practical religion, the way of salvation by faith in himself, the true nature of sanctification, and many other things. See his famous sermon on the Mount. A composition which has never been equalled, and will never be exceeded. The sim. plicity, the purity, the majesty, the wisdom, and the au. thority, which shine all through that brief sermon, demonstrate the grandeur of a mind superior to all men.
The atonement which Jesus made was foretold by the prophets, and strikingly prefigured by the Jewish sacrifices. This singular method of salvation was devised by infinite wis dom, and executed by infinite grace!
The 'example which the Saviour set was of the first kind. His meekness and humility were never tarnished, the robes of his innocence were without a spot, his disinterestedness was great, his benevolence conspicuous to all, his resignation admirable, and his whole conduct an example of unblemished virtue. From his fulness he communicates grace to men. Being infinite in his riches, the stores of his grace are inexhaustible. Come, ye needy,-come, ye wretched, and receive, out of his fulness, .grace for grace.?
2. Jesus Christ is the truth. He is so in opposition to fiction : there is nothing fictitious in Christ.-To Funcy, in Christ all is real : all is substantial.-To Ceremony, the Jewish ceremonies were types, were shadows ; Christ is the true substance, and in him is eternal life. The truth of doctrine, the truth of promises, and the truth of God; tliese all shine out, and shine forth in the person of Christ.
3. Jesus Christ is the life. The life, in opposition to death temporal, spiritual, and eternal. • He is our life;' and the Author of salvation' (which includes 'life and immortality)
to all them that obey him.' He is the life of faith; the root of that superlative grace is in him. He is the life of hope ;
He is our hope;' the ground and encouragement of it. He is the life and soul of our peuce, for. He is our peace.' In the sacred memorials of the Lord's supper, he has left the infallible tokens of it to his disciples. He is the life of our joy, as he is our Redeemer and Friend. He is the life and vigour of all practical godliness, as without him we can do nothing.'
It must follow, then, that they who lightly esteem Jesus Christ, must be out of the way,' wide of the truth, and without spiritual life. Let as many of us as have received Christ the Lord, walk in him,' and cleave to him as the way, the truth, and the life.'
[In a Letter to the Friends of the Deceased.] My very dear Friends,
The support and consolation which Christians experience under the bereavement of friends, are generally derived, I believe, from two important topics :--The nature of the present world, from which death removes us; and the dignified and blessed state upon which the pious enter when they become inhabitants of heaven. In addition to these thoughts, there is, however, one particular source of great consolation, which I think is too frequently disregarded by real Christians. Providence has kindly mingled this consolation in your cup of affliction, and, as your sincere friend, I believe you will not despise the friendly mite I wish to send you, when I refresh your me
mory with the particular source of consolation to which I refer. It is derived from the peculiar circumstances in which death often visits the children of men, compared with your own situation. I cannot explain myself better than in the following manner :
In my walk, upon ascending a steep hill, I was surprised to meet an old man, who had nearly reached the bottom. I was instructed by observing the difficulty he experienced in making slow steps, when the gentle descent of the ground aided him in façılitating his motion. As I drew nearer him, his appearance invited attention: he soon engaged in serious conversation. I had heard of the intelligent character of the family, and of the readiness and ability of its members to assist the young and inexperienced. In compliance with my request, he kindly sat down with me, and gave me a short lecture upon human life: it was his own history, as well as that, in a great measure, of many others; and he prefaced it by gravely reminding me that it might also one day be the history of my own family. Ile burst into tears, and exclaimed, Sir, you are a stranger to me; but may God Almighty be your refuge and portion. After tliis preface he proceeded as follows:
• Sir, I am an old man. Seventy-five years have I lived in this world; and my life has been little else than a repetition of events full of calamity and grief. I have been perplexed with difticulies, harrassed with cares, distressed by disappointments, injured by enemies, often rendered miserable at home and abroad, and what now fijls ine with that grief my situation be speaks, is, that I have lived to bury all my friends!, This affliction, to one who knows the value of friendship and the joys of domestic love, is a bitter calamity.' Tears and sighs interrupted his words, when, with difficulty he added, I was blessed with an amiable wife and family. The mother has long since descended to the grave; and the children, those of them who used to delight me, have also been sınitten with the shafis of death. One was removed from the world by a malignant fever; another was afflicted with a lingering consumption; a third was struck suddenly to the earth, and in a moment breathed his last; the rest, for I have yet three left, are dispersed upon the earth I know not how. The last news I received respecting them was, that they were dissolute, poor, and wretched, never likely to return bome; and that they were too much engaged with their own troubles to enquire after mine. Thus, it is true that I have long since buried all hope of earthly comfort, in the death of those relations which I dearly loved, I am yet surrounded with the children of my friends ; but they are stran, gers to the intimacy which subsisted between their parents and myself; their parents have likewise been long removed out of this world; no memorial of our friendship lives in the breasts of their children ; so that we are just such kind of friends as the people in one street are to those who live in another. Besides, Sir, I feel this affliction more, by reason of the advanced period of my life: I am old as well as friendless : I am healthy; the stamina of life reinain sound. If neither sudden death nor the violence of affliction seize me, probably I have yet several years to live; and life itself is a burden to me.
The amuseinents of life have long been tasteless to me, its business I have been compelled to relinquish, and I am now acquainted with but little else that belongs to it, except its miseries: these I always carry with me. My sight is darkened that I cannot
limbs are weakened until they are insufficient for any length of time to support my feeble frame; my blood has grown cold within my veins, until it has produced a chilliness all over my body. What was once deposited in my mind, and served to amuse me, is lost, thro’ the failure of my memory. Sir, I am a solitary, helpless, poor old man, a trouble to myself and all about me. Upon this, I gave him the best advice I could administer, secretly implored a blessing from Heaven to attend him, followed my prayers with a charity, and so I left my aged instructor.
You cannot easily conceive how my mind was affected with the remark he first made, when he said, perhaps, he was about to relate a part of the history of my own family. Three years elapsed, and I had occasion to visit the village where the friend of youth lived. I visited his habitation ; his situation and my office as a minister, assisted me in obtaining admittance. I found him languishing, as was supposed, upon the bed of death. His powers of mind were vigorous, except that the strength of his memory was apparently decayed. It was no wonder, therefore, that he was incapable of recognizing me. I was much affected at the manner in which he beinoaned his present condition; he appeared to feel death was at hand, but could not reconcile his mind to the thought of dying : be believed, he said, in a hereafter; but he was grossly ignorant of the faith which the Scriptures recommend.
" Where am I going - where am I going? - what shall I feel so soon as I have left this body?” was the language he continued to utier, accompanied with dreadful sighs and groans. Upon enquiring his character of those who were below stairs, I found he was a sober, iadustrious, and in many respects, an excellent man.
The chicf fault alleged against him by the inhabitants of the village was, his frequent omission of attending upon the ministry of the word, This dreadful unconcern about the gospel, readily explained to me the cause of that deplorable ignorance he discovered. I endea voured, in a low and distinct voice, to speak to him about the Friend of sinners. His distress of mind greatly interrupted