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regard to his burial, &c., and after taking an affectionate leave of all, he desired them to sing the hymn commencing,
Come, thou fount of every blessing,
Tune my heart to sing thy grace;.
Call for songs of loudest praise. 56 After which, he desired to be moved so that he could see the sun, which, in all the loveliness of an autumnal sunset, was just receding from his view in more senses than one ; - he observed the beauty and glory of the scene, and remarked, 'I shall soon behold a brighter sun,' -- and when the light of day went down, the lamp of life went out, without the motion of a muscle, or the uttering of a groan, on Monday, November 4th, 1839."
XX. There are some other objections which are urged against Universalism, but they are generally of slight importance. Mr. Balfour, in his First Inquiry,” has written largely in reply to the objections against Universalism. See Chap. II., Sect. VI. We must refer the reader to that work for much that we should be glad to introduce in this place, but which must be excluded for want of room. Mr. Balfour has noticed several objections, which we here have not space to notice at ali.
WHAT ARE THE DUTIES OF UNIVERSALISTS ?
I. Who are Universalists? A Universalist is one who believes in a God of infinite wisdom, and unbounded love and goodness, - who believes that Jesus Christ is his Son, and the Saviour of the world, who believes
in the record which God has given of his Son, - who believes that God will overcome all evil with goodness, and who labors to overcome evil himself, in the same way, who loves God supremely, and his neighbours with brotherly. affection, as he is required to do. He does unto others as he would that others should do unto him, — he is patient under suffering, - comforted under affliction, — undismayed under the prospect of death, — and filled with joy unspeakable and full of glory, in believing that all the ends of the earth shall see the salvation of God, that the whole creation will be delivered from the bondage of corruption, and translated into the glorious liberty of the children of God.
II. There are two kinds of Universalists. Let us premise, that we do not hold a man to be a Universalist merely because he is anti-orthodox. Universalists, it is true, are opposed to orthodoxy, but that is not the circumstance which makes them Universalists. Infidels are opposed to orthodoxy, but they are not Universalists. Catholics are opposed to what we call orthodoxy, but they are not Universalists. Disbelief of falsehood does not make a man any thing but an unbeliever.
To be a Universalist, a man must not only reject the doctrine of endless misery, he must believe in God, and in his Son Jesus Christ, and in the effectual mission of Jesus to save a world of sinners, he must believe that sin shall be finished, death be swallowed up in victory, and God be all in all. Such is Universalism. Those who believe this doctrine, and those only, are Universalists.
By the two classes of Universalists, of which we promised to speak, we mean positive and negative Universalists. The distinction may at first appear to be trifling ; but we think, upon examination, it will be seen to be founded in justice, and will assume some importance.
Negative Universalists are those, who merely assent to the doctrine. They believe, they say, that all men will at last be saved. They think the doctrine of end
less misery a very bad doctrine, and entertain no doubts of the final happiness of the whole world. This is the amount of their religion. Now there is a wide difference between these, and those we are pleased to call positive Universalists. The latter embrace the doctrine with a living faith. They not only believe it, but they feel it; they love it ; it is the meat and drink of their souls ; they have a constant and ever-active desire that others may be brought to the knowledge of the truth; they profess the truth openly; they do all in their power to establish it in the world ; they love God's house ; they love the stated ministry of the word; they love the ordinances of the Gospel; they love seasons of prayer and praise ; they love the communion of the brotherhood; they know no other religion worth possessing ; to them there is no other name given among men, whereby we can be saved, save Jesus of Nazareth. Such are positive Universalists. There are many of them in the world, but we wish their number was quadrupled. We wish there was a society of such Universalists in every town and village in the United States. They have a realizing sense of the love of God; it softens their souls ; they live a holy, religious, cheerful life ; and, viewing moral excellence to be an approximation to God, they desire to be " perfect, as their Father in heaven is perfect.'
We once knew a Universalist of this character, he was truly so. Unfortunately for him, he married a proud, giddy, worldly-minded wife, at whose persuasion he removed to another town, quit his religious society and friends, and followed her to a popular house of worship, where vain hearts, nodding plumes, and gaudy dresses congregated. He felt himself, like the prodigal, though surrounded by magnificence ; but he was in want. “0,” said he, “in my Father's house, there is bread enough and to spare, and I perish with hunger." He persisted on returning to his wonted rest ; and he came with tears of contrition to beg of God and man forgiveness for having slighted a Saviour's love, and
forsaken the fold of the faithful. The poet well expresses his feelings.
“O, for a closer walk with God,
Serene and calm my frame;
That leads me to the Lamb.
When first I saw the Lord ?
Of Jesus and his Word ?
How sweet their memory still;
That God alone can fill.
Sweet messenger of rest ;
That drove me from thy breast.
Whate'er that idol be,
And worship only thee.” The negative Universalist feels very little of such emotion as this. He thinks it does not make a great difference as to what meeting for public worship he may attend. He chooses the nearest, or at any rate the most fashionable. He comforts himself, that he will not probably hear any thing said against his faith, or, if he should, he will not be obliged to believe it. "How dwelleth the love of God in that man?” Religion to him is not a principle of the heart, it is a speculation,
the doctrine of Christ has never reached his soul. If it had, it would renovate his spirit, and make him a disciple of the Redeemer in deed and in truth.
III. Am I really a Universalist ? Do I believe, without doubt, in the existence of a supreme, selfexistent, uncreated God? Do I believe in the holy Scriptures as the Word of God ? Do I believe in Jesus as the Son of God, the Messiah? Do I believe in his resurrection? Do I believe in the resurrection of all men to a state of holiness and happiness ? - Do
I believe in the paternal character of God ? that he is my Father, and the Father of all mankind ? Do I believe all these things ?
Men are apt to be deceived in regard to what they believe. We will therefore put the reader upon a plan, by which he may determine with some considerable degree of certainty, whether he is really a Universalist. Dó you reverence God ? If
you not, you
have not a full faith in his existence, and, therefore, you are not a Universalist. Do you
read the Bible ? do you take comfort in this exercise ? are its teachings to you like cold water to a thirsty soul ? If not, you do not believe this book to be a revelation from God, and, of course, are not a Universalist.
Do you love the Saviour ? are you always desirous to follow his example and practice his precepts? If not, you do not believe that he is the Son of God, and, of course, are not a Universalist. Have you a strong hope of immortality ? Does this hope support you and comfort you in the view of death? Does it enable you to say,
co o death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory ?” If not, you must have a lurking unbelief about you, and you are at best but a doubting Universalist. Have you a filial confidence in God? Do you love him with all the heart, the mind, the might, the strength ? If not, you do not believe he is your FATHER, and, of course, you are not a Universalist. If you believe he is your Father, you will love him with your whole soul. Do you treat your fellow-creatures as your brethren ?
do not believe that God is the Father of all men. It is well for us to try ourselves frequently by these.rules. IV. The conclusion, - I am a Universalist.
Yes, a Universalist, - a believer in God as the Creator, Preserver, Benefactor, Judge, and Saviour of all men ; in Jesus, as “the Mediator between God and men, unto whom, at last, “every knee shall bow, and whom every tongue shall confess to be Lord, to the glory of God the Father.” Such is my faith. There has been
If not, you