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court of heaven-that here pious men shall enjoy the sublime happiness of devotion--that here the ingodly and the sinner shall be induced to begin their Jives anew. How often may many have to say, on the very ground we tread, . How dreadful is this place! this is none other than the house of God, and the gate of heaven.'
The master of worshipping as. semblies, Jehovah, by whose call congregations assemble, and by whose blessing their souls are benefitted, may here afford his watchful care, his animating smiles : we have every reason to believe he will do it, entreated by the earnest and fervent supplications of the men he loves; himself inclined to bless the gates of Zion, his eyes and his heart shall be here perpetually; with pleasure will he behold the favoured spot; and in the liberality of his heart afford to his assembled saints an earnest, a foretaste, a lively representation of what those happy spirits know and feel who are ever with the Lord.
We flatter ourselves, that the erection of an edi. fice like this is the effect of benevolent feeling to mankind, and an ardent love to the Great Lord of all. We unite in endeavouring to maintain the honour of the Saviour's naine, and to support the glory of his cross. We feel, and deeply too, the necessity of possessing somewhat more than this earth can afford :, we regard men as immortals, and we know that there are blessings, without the enjoyment of which, those souls will experience continued disappointment here, and will languish forever in another world. These necessary and holy blessings, the Eternal has chosen to communicate by the instrumentality of a preached gospel. We know that Jehovah, in making up the number of his elect, works by means ; therefore it is that we endeavour to bring that gospel, the report of which is indeed a joyful sound, to the ears of mankind, praying that the blessed Spirit would send it to their hearts. The erection of this place is a direct attack against against whom? say my hearers, alarmed at the
idea of hostility-against the Church of England ? No! God forbid; the very reverse of all this. We cheerfully take the present opportunity of informing this numerous auditory, that the doctrines which will be proclaimed on this ground will exactly correspond, will be just the same, with those contained in The doctrinal articles of the Church of England, which are the bulwarks of its faith, and may be read in most of the Books of Common Prayer. Is it, then, you ask again, an attack against any other congregation, or body of professing Christians? My soul revolts and spurns at the idea ; for in the cause of Immanuel we wish cordially and constantly to unite with all those who believe in the Lord Jesus, both theirs and ours. But in one word, this is an attack-directed against the kingdom of Satan, and the prince of darkness. Its object is the transla. tion of our fellow creatures from his hateful power and dominion, and their nsition into the family of the blessed household of their Redeemer. With the sword of the Spirit we wish to combat the old serpent the devil. In this large and populous town he has maintained his seat, he has reigned and triumphed: we long to see him fall, like lightning frora heaven; and hence we preach that glorious gospel, which opposes his works, which rescues from bis power, which gives us to expeet a final triumph over him and his followers.
Here we expect that the preaching of the cross will be heard—that self-righteousness will in no shape meet with encouragement—that man will be represented as nothing, and Christ as all in all. We erect no altar to an unknown God, but are boldly confessing, that we wish every day to approach the Father of spirits, through the mediation of God our Saviour, and all this by the gracious aid of the Holy Spirit. And are any of us so hardened, through the deceitfulness of sin, as not to wish that here many souls may be born to God-may be trained up for heaven; or shall we not, at the last great day, re:
joice to see a goodly company of men, who on this spot shall have met with the Saviour Jesus, and coinmenced an honourable path to heaven. We rejoice in the thought, that the cause is God's, and must prevail, and with pleasure we celebrate the growivg em. pire of our King. His church mast flourish, because it is purchased with his blood, and preserved by his grace. l'he names of the several denominations among which it is scatterd may be lost and forgotten, but its numbers shall increase, and its honours spread to the end of time.
The Episcopalian church may totter to the ground; the Presbyterian Church may be known no more; the Independent church may no longer exist as a separate body; but the true church, made of
of all these, and confined to no one of them, shall increase yet more and more, and ever be acknowledyed the Zion of the Lord, the city of the Holy One · of Israel.
This morning have we cause for gratitude, that amidst the spread of infidelity, and a vain philosophy, the work of God is not forgotten; that still his churches rise and flourish; that still souls are born to God, and the saints shout aloud for joy. In the sanctuaries where we worship, we have the solace of our cares, a kind refreshment afforded us in our journey to heaven, and new light and joy bestowed. May all this be known amongst us-be known by posterity when we are cold in death.
I cannot lose sight of the opportunity which this morning affords me, of assuring this large and mixed assembly, that real religion is a personal thing; that the gospel we preach must be believed, and its consolations enjoyed, or there remains for us no hope of pardon or of peace. My fellow immortals you have all sinned, and come short of the glory of God: but we exhibit to you a blessed and perfect Redeemer ! Believe in him, and you shall not be confounded world without end. And when I meet you in an assembly, far larger and more solemn than this, I mean
at the judgrient day, you shall be accepted of him ; yea, believing in him, you shall then enter a temple, not made with hands, eternal in the heavens; and forever adore the hand that formed it, the grace that conducted us to it, and the Saviour who fills it with his glory. Amen.
On Wednesday, May 29, 1812, the Chapel was solemnly dedicated to God. On this interesting occasion, the Rev. P. S. Charrier, of Bethesda chapel, Liverpool, commenced the morning service by reading a suitable portion of scripture, and offering up a solemn and appropriate prayer. The Rev. William Jay, of Bath, delivered a sermon from Psalm cxxii. 6, • They shall prosper that love thee.' The Rev. Mr. Lister, of Lime-street chapel, concladed by prayer. In the evening, the service was opened by reading of the seriptures and prayer, by the Rev. Jos. Fletcher, A. M. of Blackburn. "The Rev. Dr. Collyer, of Peckham, preached from 1 John iv. 8. • God is love.' The Rev. Mr. Kershaw, of Edinburgh, coneluded by prayer.
This is evidently but a rude outline of what was deliva ered on that interesting occasion. The effect produced upon the immense auditory which he addressed was remarkably strong and every effect must have an adequate cause.
MR. SPENCER'S ANSWERS TO THE QUESTIONS
PROPOSED TO HIM, AT HIS ORDINATION.
What motives have induced you to enter upon the
important work of the Christian Ministry? As the religion of the Bible appears in my estimation the best blessing
Jehovahı has bestowed upon the world, I, from the humble hope that it has shed its influence on my own heart, am impressed with an earnest wish to be the instru. ment of conveying its holy advantages to my fellow-immor. tals! I say from the hope that I am interested in its bles. sings; for in no one sentiment am I more fully established, than that the ministers of God should be men of God; that personal religion is a most indispensable requisite in all who grasp at the honour of being the servants of Christ and his churches. That it has pleased God, who separated me from my mother's womb, to call me by his grace, and reveal his Son in me, I am led to hope, or I dare not think of the Christian ministry! From my earliest infancy, having been blessed with a religious education, iny mind was powerfully impressed with the solemnities of death and judgment; and often have such impressions been the means of drawing me to earnest secret prayer, at a very early period of my exist. ence. Yet did I, as I advanced in age and stature, give proofs, awfully evident, frequently since distressing to my mind, of the dreadful depravity of my nature, and of the necessity of that great change, which I then accurately judged had not really passed on my soul. But God remembered me in mercy! The Holy Spirit made use of the preaching of the gospel at Hertford by various ministers of our own clenomination, as also by several in the connexion of the late Countess of Huntingdon, to enlighten my mind in the knowledge of him; gradually he drew me to himself; and, I trust, impart. ed to me, for my best treasure, his love in my heart, the sal.. vation of Christ, with its attendant blessings. Viewing myself, then, as a young sinner, blest with special favours, I determined I would not live to myself, but to Him who I believed had loved me, and given himself for me. I cast myself upon his care; I implored his direction as to my future steps; I longed to be engaged in the holy ministry, yet God is my record that I trembled at the idea of rushing into his service; of assuming, with daring temerity, a character I was so unfit to bear. I resolved that I would wait for the direction of his providence, and then go on in his strength. Christian friends urged me to devote myself to the work of the Lord; my own