« AnteriorContinua »
We have not the vocal, but we have a written oracle, which by its moral instructions and solemn sanctions is to guide and influence the conduct both of rulers and citizens.
Though there is a similarity in some respects, yet in other respects there is a difference between the Jewish and the American governments. In the latter there is a power of making laws and imposing taxes. In the former the laws were already made, and the taxes, or means of supporting religion and government, were permanently fixed and ascertained by divine authority. The whole nation was a body of soldiers, and every man, when called forth to war, went at his own expense. The chief business of the government was to deliberate and determine on matters of peace and war, public defence, and other great national concerns.
The discontents of the people under their free government, changed it, in a course of 'years, into a monarchy. Foreseeing this change, God expressly or dered, that whenever they should. set a king over them, they should select for the kingly office one of their own people; and that he should write out for himself a copy of the divine law, and keep it by him for his direction in the administration of his government. Under the monarchy, which the people were anxious to obtain, they were, for the greater part of the time, very unhappy; for their kings were generally wicked, unprincipled, irreligious men, and the people were easily corrupted by so high an example.
The religious constitution of this nation, besides the injunction of moral duties, which it considered as of principal importance, required a great multitude of ceremonial observances and periodical festivals, for the administration of which a competent number of officers were appointed. The ritual law descends to many minute particulars, some of which appear trivial and useless, and were attended with considerable labour and expense. But, as our author has clearly shewn, they were wisely adapted to the habits and circumstances of that people, and to their peculiar situation, and were the best guards, that could be devised, to secure them from the idolatries and superstitions of surrounding nations, by whom they were always in danger of being corrupted; and, on the whole, they were happily calculated to preserve the knowledge and worship of the one supreme God, to promote peace and union among themselves, and to enforce the practice of all moral duties.
On circumcision, which, as a seal of God's covenant, was instituted under the patriarchal, and continued under the Jewish dispensation, and on the weekly Sabbath, which began at the creation of man, and was revived by Moses and placed among his moral precepts, our author treats more largely, than on some other institutions, and points out their usefulness and their continuation in substance, though with some variance of form, under the dispensation of Christ.
He next shews the importance of God's early and visible mani
festations of himself to his people, and the manner in which these manifestations were made; the nature and use of the tabernacle and temple; the appointment and qualifications of the ministers of the sanctuary; their induction into office, and their respective duties; and he answers several inquiries relative to the Jewish priesthood.
These "Lectures on Jewish Antiquities" were to have been followed by a course of Lectures on "Ecclesiastical History." We painfully regret that this design was arrested in the beginning by the hand of a righteous and sovereign Providence.
Particular extracts from the work, which we have reviewed, we thought unnecessary, as we trust the whole work will be extensively read; and in a work so uniformly important and instructive, and in which there is so little preference of one part to another, it is difficult to make selections.
He explains particularly the duties of the prophets, the manner of their education, and the use and design of their ministry, which was to reprove the people for their corruptions, warn them of impending judgments, call them to repentance, shew them. Of the style and manner we the subservience of the ceremo- need say no more than this: nial to the moral law, and predict Doctor Tappan has written like the grand events which related himself, with perspicuity, corto posterity, to the Gentiles, and rectness and energy. to the gospel dispensation; and he subjoins a vindication of the character and writings of the prophets against the cavils and objections of infidels.
He gives a better account, than can easily be found elsewhere, of the several sects, which appeared among the Jews, in and near the time of our Saviour, and shews their rise and origin, and their distinguishing tenets and manners.
He shews how the numerous rites and ceremonies of the Hebrew ritual gradually unfolded the more perfect dispensation of the gospel.
The Lectures were happily adapted to the design of their institution; and are well worthy of the perusal of ministers, students in divinity, and Christians in general. They cast light, not only on the subjects chosen for elucidation, but also on many obscure passages of the Bible. They lend their aid to display the evidences of the divine origin both of the old and new Testament, and give a full answer to the cavils of infidels against the divinity of the Mosaic institutes.
As the Doctor studied conciseness, he has, in a summary way, passed over some matters, on which, we think, he might have enlarged to advantage. The conquest of Canaan, and the extermination of its inhabitants he justifies by the warrant given to the Jews by him, who is the Sovereign of the universe. This certainly is a sufficient RRT
Lastly; he compares the character and institutions of the Hindoos with those of the Hebrews; and proves, that the institution of the Hebrews could not be derived from the Hin doos, or from any other human
Vol. III. No. 11.
- justification. But we think the conquest may be farther vindicated by the rules and usages of nations, not merely in that rude and barbarous age; but also in our own more civilized times.
The Doctor has mentioned the appointment of cities of refuge for the manslayer; but has not assigned the reasons, arising from the then prevailing customs of the world, for this hu
mane and kind institution, nor pointed out its moral and religious design.
If some of our obliging correspondents would favour us with a dissertation on each of the subjects mentioned by the Reviewer, he would oblige the Editors, and, we believe, he would also gratify our readers.
Tenth meeting of the Congregational Missionary Society in the Counties of Berkshire and Columbia.
AGREEABLY to appointment, the tenth annual meeting of the Congregational Missionary Society in the Counties of Berkshire and Columbia was holden at the meeting house in Pittsfield, Sept. 15th, 1807; at the opening of which a sermon was delivered by the Rev. Silas Churchill of New-Lebanon.
At this meeting several new members were added to the Society, which was gratefully noticed, by the friends of the missionary interest, as a token of good from the Head of the church.
The Trustees made a report of their doings from the time of their appointment, viz. from Sept. 1806, to Sept. 1807, which received the approbation of the Society.
The Report is as follows:
The Trustees of the Missionary Society request the attention of the members to the following account of missions for the last year, and of their doings in the discharge of the trust which has been committed to them.
The missionaries, respecting hom information is now to be communicated, are Rev. Nathaniel Turner, Mr. Ebenezer I. Leavenworth, Mr. Levi Parsons, Rev. Alvan Sanderson, Rev. Enos Bliss, Rev. Azel Washburn, Rev. Oliver Ayer, Rev. Jeremiah Osborn, and Rev. Samuel Shepard.
Rev. Mr Turner's mission was for 16 weeks in the north-western
Counties of the state of Vermont, and the new settlements west of Lake Champlain. His journal has been received, by which it appears, that he travelled 900 miles, preached 97 times, attended 19 conferences and church meetings, and 8 lectures preached by other ministers. He administered the sacrament of the Lord's supper twice, baptised 12 infants and one adult, visited and conversed with nearly 200 families on religious subjects, and received in contribution for the Missionary Society $10,2.
From Mr. Leavenworth's journal it appears, that he performed a mission of 12 weeks in the Counties of Luzern and Wayne, that he rode 734 miles, preached 59 times, attended 22 conferences, and visited 153 families and 4 schools. He received in contribution from the people among whom he laboured $26,6.
Mr. Parsons' journal has been received, from which it appears, that he performed a mission of 10 weeks in the western Counties of the state of New York; that he rode upwards of 500 miles, preached 53 sermons, attended 5 conferences, visited 3 schools, made numerous family visits, and received in contribution $12,76.
From the journal of Rev. Alvan Sanderson, who performed a mission of 12 weeks in the north western Counties of Vermont, it appears that
he was very laborious and faithful in his services, in attending conferences, in preaching lectures, in visiting families and schools, and that he received in contribution $18,50.
The journal of Rev. Enos Bliss has been received, from which it appears, that he has performed a mission of 12 weeks in the new settlements, on the Black River, that he travelled 722 miles, preached 94 sermons, made 100 family visits, attended 18 conferences, visited 7 schools, attended 4 funerals, administered the sacrament of the Lord's supper twice, and baptism 3 times, and received in contribution $7,28.
Rev. Azel Washburn was appointed to perform a mission, of 4 weeks, in the north eastern part of the County of Berkshire. From his journal it appears that he preached 26 times, visited 2 schools, attended one religious conference, visited from 60 to 70 families, and received in contribution $18,61.
Rev. Mr. Ayer, by appointment, has performed a mission, of 20 weeks, in the western Counties in the state of New-York. On this mission he rode 1150 miles, preached 82 sermons, made 121 family visits, attended 4 funerals and 15 conferences, visited and catechised 3 schools, baptized 27 children, admitted 5 persons to the communion of churches, attended 3 church meetings, and received in contribution $52,94.
Mr. Ebenezer I. Leavenworth is engaged on another mission, of 12 weeks, in the Counties of Luzern and Wayne. He has sent to us a journal of 8 weeks of labour, as a part of this mission, accompanied by a letter, in which he gives assurance, that he
will perform the remainder, in a short time; he having suspended missionary services, with a view of supplying, for a few weeks, a vacant society, as a candidate. From his journal of that part of his mission, which he has performed, it appears that he attended 14 conferences, preached 36 sermons, visited 6 schools and 128 families, and received in contribution $5,68.
A missionary appointment has been sent to Rev. Jeremiah Osborn of Western, Tioga County, authorising him to labour in the service of the Society 4 or 5 weeks, at his discretion, in the vacant towns and settlements adjacent to him.
Rev. Samuel Shepard was requested to spend a few days as a missionary, in the north east part of the County of Berkshire. His journal of this mission states, that he laboured 9 days, rode more than 80 miles, preached 13 sermons, visited 10 families, 2 schools and a number of sick people. He received in contribution $3,63.
Since the last Report of the Trustees to the Society, returns of 91 weeks and 2 days of missionary service, actually performed, have been made to the Trustees.
The amount of contributions, in the new settlements, as stated by the journals received, is $155,48.
The amount of monies paid out, since the last Report, for missionary preaching is $458,58.
The Report of the Treasurer was also heard and accepted by the Society. The following is his Report at large, with a statement of his accounts continued to Feb. 4th, 1808, when they were audited.
▲ statement of the funds of the Congregational Missionary Society in the Counties of Berkshire and Columbia, and the expenditures of the same, from the 21st of November, 1806, to the 4th of February, 1808, inclusive.
Account of Monies received by the Treasurer.
1807, Jan. 9, Of Rev. Enos Bliss, collected on his mission to Black River 7,28 Feb. 6th, Of Rev. Alvan Sanderson, collected on his mission to the northern parts of the state of Vermont
12th, Of Rev. Azel Washburn, collected on a mission in the north-
13th, Of Rev. Azel Washburn, a donation
25th, Of the town of Pittsfield
March 6, Of P. a donation
Of R. E. a donation
Mar. 20, Of Mr. Levi Parsons, collected on a mission to the western counties of the state of New York
April 21, Of the town of Lee
June 10, Of a member for arrears of annuities 17, Of Rev. S. Tracy, a donation
July 1st, Of deacon John Hall, a donation
Sept. 4th, Of a friend of missions in Williamstown'
Of Rey. Alvan Hyde, eing the profits arising from his
sale of the second volume of the Panoplist
15th, Of 27 members, their annual dues
Of 5 members, arrearage of annual dues
Of 6 members, their entrance money
- 37,00 - 27,00
Of Rev. Samuel Shepard, collected on a mission to the north
ern parts of the county of Berkshire
Of the town of Middlefield
3,63 - 17,06
Of the town of New Concord
Of the town of New Lebanon
Of Mr. Leicester
Of Mr. William Allen
30th, Of a friend of missions in Dalton
Oct. 5th, Of Rev. Oliver Ayer, collected on a mission to the Western parts of the state of New York
Of Mr. Ebenezer I. Leavenworth, collected on a mission to
Dec. 4th, Of a female friend of missions
Of a friend of missions
1808, Feb. 4, Of the North Society in the town of New Marlborough - 16,53 Of 9 members, arrearage of their annuities, received at sundry times since Nov. 21st, 1806
The number of Books received since Nov. 21st, 1806, viz.
Of Mr. Fox of Boston, 9 vols. of " A compendium of Chris-
The number of Books delivered out to Missionaries to be dis-
The number of books now on hand, viz.
40 Bibles, 54 testaments, 9 vals. of "a Compendium of Christian Theology," "1 bible dictionary, 1 religious life, 1 spellingbook, 1 resurrection of Christ, 1 Trial of the Witnesses, 3 Primers, and 36 dialogues, or "cheap religious tracts." Monies paid by order of the Trustees since Nov. 21st, 1806. Dec. 5, 1806, To Rev. Oliver Ayer, in advance of a mission to the counties of Otsego, Herkimer, Ontario, and Steuben in the state of New York
1807, Jan. 9, To Rev. Enos Bliss for a mission to the settlements on
Black River, in the State of New York.
Jan. 12, To Mr. Ebenezer I. Leavenworth for a mission to the County of Luzern, Pennsylvania