Imatges de pÓgina
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Are private vices public benefits? In other words, is what is called a great, powerful and flourishing state of society, necessarily corrupt or vicious? What are the advantages and disadvantages of foreign commerce? What are the advantages and disadvantages of luxury-of the fine arts-of large towns of immense fortunes-of hereditary wealth and titles of abridging - labour by machinery, &c. &c.? Have public amusements, as the theatre, the opera, &c. a good or bad tendency? Have works of fiction, as plays, novels, poesies, &c. a good or bad tendency? What are the true origin, nature and tendency of gallantry, cicisbeism, &c.? What are the origin, nature and tendency of politeness? Is it (as Mandeville represents it) essentially insincere or hypocritical, the slavish offspring of despotic courts? What is the real value of what are called accomplishments? What are the advantages and disadvantages of the modern plan of education? What parts of modern education are useful-what parts are useless-what parts are mischievous? What are the advantages and disadvantages respectively of universities, colleges, day-schools, boarding-schools, &c.? Is it probable that there might be more of useful learning and true science without any of them? Whether are maxims and manners or laws and institutions of greatest importance to the well-being of commonwealths? Is it possible to have a system of laws so simple as to preclude the necessity of professional lawyers? Is it possible to have justice administered in a well ordered commonwealth without a code of laws? Are there any absolute or abstract principles of justice? What is the firmest and broadest basis of equity? What is the fairest or least arbitrary title to property? What are the best preventives of faction, commotion, fraud, violence, discontent, &c. in a commonwealth? What are the most effectual means of preserving a commonwealth in the even tenour of progressive improvement, equi-distant from despotism and anarchy? What is the great central principle, round which a commonwealth must constantly revolve, to have the greatest sum of freedom, dignity and happiness, and most security from despotism and anarchy-external and internal war? Is it possible and desirable to raise a

whole people into a philosophical society? What are the best means for that purpose? What are the advantages and disadvantages of ecclesiastical establishments? Are they compatible with the peace, security and progressive improvement of a well-ordered commonwealth? Are any religious sects or factions (two or more congregations united into one body), whether established or tolerated, compatible with the well-being of commonwealths? Are charities of any description benefits or injuries to society?

These, Sir, are a few of such queries as 1 should be glad to see well answered in your pages. Crude thoughts in loose remarks will serve no good purpose; but if some of your readers will digest or think any of the above queries into simple, clear, distinct, selfevident, or demonstrable propositions, they will confer a benefit on society, and very much oblige

Your Correspondent,
JAMES GILCHRIST.

GLEANINGS; OR, SELECTIONS AND
REFLECTIONS MADE IN A COURSE
OF GENERAL READING.

No. CCLXXII.

Lord Clarendon's Character of the Emperor Julian.

"And now succeeded Julian in the Empire; whether an apostate or no, may for aught I know be lawfully doubted. That he was a great enemy to the Christians, and that he found a way more to discredit and dishonour Christianity by his wit and mirth and scoffs and discountenance, (which made a greater impression upon the Christians of that age, and made more of them to renounce their faith, than any one of the fiery and bloody persecutions had done) is very clear: yet I have never seen ground enough to conclude that he ever embraced the Christian faith, or was instructed in it; for though he had conformed in some outward appearance, to the commands of his uncle the Emperor Constantine, yet he appeared always addicted to the religion of the Gentiles, in which he was very learned; and taking him as a Gentile, he may well be looked upon as a prince of extraordinary virtue, and one, who if he had not been carried by a wonderful providence, and against all the advice of his friends

and several predictions (to which he was naturally superstitious enough) into that war where he was slain, it is probable might have extended his empire to as great an extent of dominion and reputation as ever it had under any of his predecessors. And here it may not be unfit (though I believe it will be very unpopular) to observe how much passion and prejudice contribute to the corruption of history for we know not to what else to impute all those relations of the manner of his death, and his last speech in contempt of our Saviour, than to the over zeal of religions persons of that age; who, believing his apostacy, thought they could not load his memory with too many reproaches, nor sufficiently celebrate God's mercy in the vengeance acted upon him in so extraordinary a manner. And the Spaniards do still believe that he was killed by Saint Mercurius with one of the lances which was always kept in that Saint's tomb, as it was missed on the day in which Julian was killed, and found again the next day in its place, all bloody, Whereas, if we will believe Ammianus Marcellinus, (who is incomparably the best writer of that age and was himself in that battle,) he was hurt in a very sharp charge of the enemy when great numbers fell on both sides; and being carried out of the field into his tent, where he lived some days after he found his wound to be mortal, he sent for the principal officers of his army, made a long discourse to them of the public affairs and of his particular person and his actions and intentions, full of wisdom and magnanimity, and died with as great serenity and tranquillity of mind as any Roman general of whom we have received very good account in

story."

I.

Religion and Policy, 8vo. 1811.

23-25.

No. CCLXXIII. Magnanimity of a Scottish Prince. Malcolm the Third having received information, that one of his nobles had conceived a design against his life, he enjoined the strictest silence to the informer, and took no notice of it himself, till the person accused of this execrable treason came to his court, in order to execute his intention. The

next morning he went to hunt, with all the train of his courtiers, and when they were got into the deepest woods of the forest, drew that nobleman away from the rest of the company, aird spoke to him thus: "Behold! we are here alone, armed and mounted alike. Nobody sees or hears us, or can give either of us aid against the other. If then you are a brave man, if you have courage and spirit, perform your purpose; accomplish the promise you have made to my enemies. If you think I ought to be killed by you, when can you do it better? when more opportunely? when more manfully?-Have you prepared poison for me? that is a womanish treason: Or would you murder me in my bed? an adulteress could do that. Or have you hid a dagger to stab me secretly? that is the deed of a ruffian. Rather act like a soldier; act like a man; and fight with me hand to hand, that your treason may at least be free from baseness.”—--At these words, the traitor, as if he had been struck with a thunderbolt, fell at his feet and implored his pardon. "Fear nothing: you shall not suffer any evil from me," replied the king, and kept his word.

The above story is related (from the mouth of Malcolm's own son, David the First, to Henry II. of England, his great grandson,) by Ethelred, Abbot of Rivans. [De Genealogia Reg. Angl. p. 367.]

See Lord Lyttelton's Henry II. 8vo. 1. pp. 94, 95.

No. CCLXXIV.
Spiritual Comedy at Rome.

The Father-Jesuits at Rome have had a play, or spiritual comedy, acted in their Casa Professa (or part of their college where they read their lectures) concerning the conversion of Japan. In the first scene of which there appeared a Jesuit making a sermon to the pit about this subject. That God, being upon the work of renewing the world, has in this age raised up their society, which his Divine Majesty hath been so gracious to, that no human power has been able to oppose it, and such other jimcracks, which they brought in a Japanese to reply to: who said, that they did not believe that God sent them thither, but that some enemy of mankind wafted them over into their

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country, and there they make it their business to set people together by the ears, and to spy out the nakedness of their country, and divers others such conceits. And so the play went on, with divers other remarkable passages spoken by the actors, all against them. And I cannot imagine how this came into their heads, unless it be to tell the world to their teeth, that they know what folks talk and think of them; and that they value no man a farthing for it."

Father Paul's Letters, p. 326,
Venice, 1612.

No. CCLXXV.
Jesuits Ontwitted.

"At Palermo these sweet fathers have met with a pretty accident. A certain wealthy gentleman died there, that was hugely devoted to them; and paving made his will, and left his only son and those fathers together, his heirs, making them his executors, with a

July 27th, 1816. Observations on MATT. xi. 27. THERE MYSTERY exists, there

BIBLICAL CRITICISM.

:

in points which are revealed there can be no mystery. If the sun burst on us in his splendour, darkness is immediately put to flight. To speak of the mysteries of Revelation, is at once to employ phraseology as incorrect as can well be conceived, and to arraign the Divine wisdom, goodness and fidelity in the doctrine of the Gospel. It is to say that God, having professed to give mankind the most important knowledge respecting himself, and the designs which he executes by Jesus Christ, has, nevertheless, failed of his intention, has withholden what, according to the persons whom I have in view, is yet essential to be believed; inasmuch as without the belief of it we can have no salvation.

The question concerning this supposed alliance of mystery with Revelation, may be brought within a short compass and to an easy issue. Let all those passages of Scripture where the word mystery occurs be collected and

power of dividing the estate as they pleased, and of giving the son what they should see convenient; the fathers have divided it all into ten parts, and fairly given one part to the son, and kept the other nine for themselves. The son hereupon has made his complaint to the Duke of Ossuna (the viceroy) of this great inequality; who hearing both parties, has made good the division that the Jesuits made of the whole estate; but changing the terms, has ordered that the nine parts do (by the will) belong to the son, and one part (and no more) to the fathers, because they were to give him what pleased them."

The Same, p. 326.

No. CCLXXVI.

A Canonization.

Not many years ago, a Dominican of Toledo was ranked among the Saiufs for having remained thirty years in his cell alone and without smiling or speaking

compared together. This being done, if a single text can be produced which asserts the mysteriousness of any re

tract as erroneous my opinion on the utter irreconcilableness of the term mystery with the term revelation.

"What then, it may be asked, is the import of the passage to which reference is made at the head of this paper? Must we not pronounce it somewhat favourable to the notion that even Revelation has its mysteries? So it may be thought, when torn away from it's context, when interpreted by readers whose minds have received a bias from human creeds: so it will not be considered after it has been thoroughly examined.

As error is best confuted by the establishment of truth, I begin with endeavouring to ascertain the just sense of our Lord's declaration, "All things are delivered unto me of my Father: and no man knoweth the Son but the Father; neither knoweth any man the Father, save the Son, and he to whomsoever the Son will reveal him."

The Gospel was rejected by numbers

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of those to whom it had been first of- the Father- -where the term seen
fered, and especially by the leading is manifestly equivalent with known.
persons in the Jewish nation, by the To justify this exposition, which,
sect who possessed the chief honour in it's principle, agrees with Dr. S.
and influence among them. It was a Clarke's, * and with Rosenmuller's,t
consolation however to the benevolent it may be remarked that in the New
mind of Jesus Christ that some of the Testament persons are not unfrequently
- lower classes of the people had received denoted by the word things, t' as in
his doctrine with willing hearts, and 1 Cor. i. 27, 28; that the Father is the
that he could look forward to the fur- appropriate name of God under the
ther diffusion of it, particularly beyond dispensation of the Gospel, and ex-
thelimits of Judæa. On this account, pressive of his parental relation to all
he, accordingly, presented to the God mankind; that the Son is a title of of-
whom he worshipped the following fice; that nothing is more common
devout acknowledgment: “I thank than to state general propositions in an
thee, O Father, Lord of heaven and absolute form; and that the concise
earth, because thou hast hidden these modes of speech in use among the
things from the wise and prudent,” Eastern people admit and receive light
from men who are such in their own from the occasions and the subjects in
conceit,“ and hast revealed them unto respect of which they are employed.
babes,” to persons of humbler attain- The true sense then of the passage
ments and pretensions, and of teachable before us I take to be the following,
dispositions -“ Even so, Father, for that at the time when these words
so it seemed good in thy sight." Here were uttered, no one, but the Father,
it is observable that our Lord expressly the only God, knew the extent of our
distinguishes between what is hidden Saviour's commission, including, as it
and what is revealed : and to this ad- really did, the whole human race; and,
mirable devotional address succeeds the on the other hand, that no man save the
declaration, “all things, &c. &c." Son, none but Jesus Christ, possessed

From this reference of the passage to a knowledge of the merciful designs it's connexion, we learn that Jesus is of the Father being thus unlimited speaking throughout of the designs of although it was a truth which the the Father, and of the instrumentality Messiah had the privilege of commuand commission of the Son, in the scheme nicating at his pleasure. How well of the Gospel.

this interpretation accords with facts, Let us now consider somewhat more and with our Lord's character and minutely the words themselves :

circumstances, it is unnecessary to re“ All things,” all matters relative to present. the Christian dispensation, all persons

Of a double meaning the passage of every nation, who are to be the sub- does not appear to be susceptible. jects of it, “ are delivered unto me of Consequently, if I have succeeded in my Father," committed unto me by ascertaining it's just signification, all God, the only possessor of underived other paraphrases of it must be erroand essential power : or, as the same fact is expressed, John iii. 35, “ ihe If, for example, any persons will Father loveth the Son, and hath given infer from these words that the nature all things into his hand.” “ And no or the essence of the Father and of the man knoweth the Son,” or is as yet Son are known mutually to themselves, acquainted with the comprehensive and to those who are favoured with this object of his office, “but the Father," knowledge by Jesus Christ, let such who putteth the times and seasons in expositors be informed that they subhis own power, and worketh according stitute their own imaginations for the to the counsel of his own will: "nei- language and the meaning of the Bible. ther knoweth any man the Father,” The Bible does not profess to instruct no one is in possession of the extent of us in the essence of the Deity, but the plans of Divine grace, “ save the declares that he is a perfect spirit, and Son, and he to whomsoever the Son conveys to mankind the most valuable will reveal him;" which latter senti- knowledge with regard to his character,' ment is illustrated and supported by our Lord's words in John vi. 46,-'not * A Parapkrase, &c. in loc : that any man hath seen the Father

+ Scholia in N. T. in loc : gave he who is of God, he hath seen 1 Hammond, &c. in loc:

VOL. XI.

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neous.

32

government and will.

And of the of his characters, is adopted in The great Messiah, the Mediator of the Racovian Catechism ;* a mannal which, covenant of the Gospel, it invariably I hope, will soon be more extensively speaks as the man Christ Jesus ; never known among my readers, and from even intimating that his nature and which I shall now make two extracts person are mysterious, and certainly on a subject to which their attention the sentences on which I am com- - was be (Christ] not a priest till menting.

he entered into the heaven? not when Further; It ought not to be concluded he hung upon the cross?" from the last clause, ‘he to whoinsoever “ A. Ai no hand; for, as you heard the Son will reveal him,' that Jesus even now, the divine author to the coinmunicates to any of his followers Hebrews, ch. viii. 4, expressly saith a private or individual revelation of that if Christ were upon the earth, he the nature or the mind of God. This would not be a priest. Besides, forasmistake is very current, and tends to much as the same author testifieth that produce in some men spiritual pride, Christ ought in all things to be made in others religious despondency. It is like unto his brethren, ihat he might a public revelation which our Lord become a faithful and merciful high here mentions; one that was made in priest to God ward, it is evident that part by his own instrumentality, in until he had been made like unto his part by that of his apostles. There are brethren in all things, that is in afiwo passages in the New Testament fictions and death, he was not our with which the words before us ought merciful and faithful high priest." especially to be compared : John i. 18, The following question and answer, “No man hath seen God at any time; deserve the notice of careful inquirers the only begotten Son, who is in the into the sense of Scripture : bosom of the Father," i.e. who has a Why doth the Scripture, treating compleat acquaintance with the Divine. of Christ's priesthood, say that he ire counsels for the salvation of the world, tercedeth for us?" “ he hath declared him :" Matt. xui. “ A. Both that the care which 16, 17," -- verily, I say unto you that Christ takes of our salvation might, by blessed are your eyes, &c.; for many the requests which he is said to make prophets and righteous men have de- to God, appear to us; and also that the sired to see those things which ye see, prerogative and eminency of the Father and have not seen them, and to hear above Christ might remain entire and those things which ye hear, and have inviolate." not heard them."

Here the coinpiler of the Catechism So far therefore is the phraseology alludes to Heb. vii. 24, 25. But the which has been the subject of these word intercession, which occurs in that remarks from stating or implying the passage, does not necessarily and excluexistence of a mysterious union between sively import the act of offiring supplicathe Father and the Son that it declares tions for the welfare of others. It is a a plain and most interesting truth : ! term of very extensive signification, mean, the concurrence of God and and mcans the management of the colla Christ as to the grand objects and vast cerns of our fellore men. extent of the Christian Revelation ; a The intercession of Christ, therefore, truth particularly valuable to those is not his pleading with offended jusprofessors of the Gospel who are of tice, or his interposing to afert Divine Gentile parentage !

N. wrath : it is a part of his mediation or

ministry as the APPOINTED Messenger August 7th, 1816. of God and Saviour of mankind; and Supplementary Remarks on the Priesthood thus, in the language of this Catechi-m, of Christ.

it illustrates the prerogative and emi[See pp. 402, 403.] nency of the Father."

N. T theology to represent Jesus Christ

Translated into English. Amséerdam, as sustaining the several offices of pro- 1652. pp. 163, &c. Catechesis Ecclesiarum phet, priest and king. This division, Polonicarum. 325, &c. though not exactly this arrangement, † M. Repos. XI. 402, 403.

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