ページの画像
PDF
ePub

say,

ed in the context is, an operative sound of many waters, and be an failh.

odour of sweet smell unto our hea. Our Saviour tells the disciples, venly Father. that the reason they could not eject And if the church were brought the devil, in the case delineated in up to this state, what efficiency would the context, was, “because of their she possess ! what power with God! unbelief ;” and then proceeds to what triumph over sin! what burn

Verily I say unto you, If ye ing charity! what a halo of glory bave faith as a grain of mustard would surround her! O for “the seed, ye shall say unto this moun. spirit of grace and supplication !.tain, Remove hence to yonder place, () for a “baptism of the Holy and it shall remove ; and nothing Ghost !” shall be impossible unto you.” It 3. To faith and prayer we must is probable our Lord here refers pri- add fasting. marily to the faith of miracles, the Christian fasting is a temporary smallest amount of which should be abstinence from foud; neither so sufficient to remove the greatest excessive as to produce exhaustion obstacles. But, in a more general and debility, nor yet so partial as to application of the text, “ faith as a produce no sensible effect upon the grain of mustard seed” may, as Dr. physical and mental frame. This duty, Adam Clarke says, import a grow- accompanied by earnest and lowly. ing, active faith.”

minded prayer and an obedient faith, The faith of the church is the humbles and subdues the heart. There great conservative principle, upon is a constant tendency in our animal which depend the hopes and happi- appetites to triumph over reason and ness of a lost world. I speak not conscience. A perpetual effort is now of the faith of miracles. This, necessary, to enable the moral and for wise reasons, long since ceased the rational to overcome the animal from the church. I speak of that part. By mortifying and subduing vital energy wbich gives efficiency the flesh, and by cherishing the and success to the instituted means intellectual and moral man, we beof grace, and arms the church come prepared for strong intellectual against the charms of the world, and and moral efforts. But fasting is a the powers of hell. Its essential divine institution; and its utility principles are, a conviction of the does not depend upon its natural truth of the Gospel, a submission to effects upon the body or the mind, the terms of salvation, and a trust so much as upon the blessings of in the promises of God. This faith God. For God will always visit fails not to regulate both the heart with special favour acts of obedience and life, and to give effect to all performed in the true spirit of obeGod's appointed means for the me dience ; that is, because he requires lioration of human condition.

them, and is glorified in them. Our 2. The next condition necessary true attitude is that of submission ; to secure divine help is, prayer.

and even where we can see no spePrayer is the offering up of the cial adaptedness in the duty required desires of the heart to God: it is to promote the least good, still, for the soul's converse with the Invisi “obedience is better than sacri. ble : and it is acceptable only when fice, and to hearken than the fat of associated with the faith of which rams." we have spoken. I would have the But let us finally proceed to conthoughts, the desires, and the words sider the propriety of a national fast, of the whole church combined and at the present time, in this country. mingled in a common offering to And, Almighty God. I would have every 1. As a nation, we are in a state one bring his own offering, be it of deep affliction. The rod of God ever so small, and cast it into God's is laid upon us. We are suffering treasury, until the grand aggregate heavy pecuniary embarrassments. shall constitute a unanimous expres In our prosperity we had forgotten sion, and go up to God like the God, and almost set bis providence

;

us

at defiance. But now we are in the neglect and forget God, he may furnace of affliction. God is teach- leave us to suffer injustice and ing us that the silver and the gold oppression from other nations. I are his, and he gives it to whom- maintain, that our only safety is in soever he pleases. The commercial the favour and protection of Alinterests of the country are dis- mighty God; and that these bless. turbed ; and the consequence is, ings can only be secured by repent. that the business portion of the ance and submission. It may be community, are labouring under thought puerile to apprehend a war severe and almost unprecedented with England; and, upon the ground embarrassments. To a thoughtful of human probabilities, I am not and pious mind, this state of things prepared to predict such an event. appears quite providential. It came But, judging according to the estabupon us like a thief in the night, lished principles of the divine gounexpectedly. And, while politicians vernment, 1 allege there is ground are tasking their intellects to ascer. to fear that some dreadful judgment tain the causes, let Christians say, is at hand. It may be famine ; it “ It is the Lord ; let him do what may he pestilence; it may be war: soever he pleases."

but something, and that just what But the great national calamity the infinite wisdom of God shall which has called us together on the determine, will befall us, to humble present occasion is, the death of our our pride, and to tame our ambition, Chief Magistrate. He whom this if not prevented by speedy repentgreat nation delighted to honour is ance. Something will occur, to now silent in death. After enjoying show us that nothing is wise, nohis elevation for one brief month, thing strong, nothing holy, without he has shared the common fate of God; that in vain do we boast of humanity; and all that remains of our position, our numbers, or our him is, the recollection of his mili- wealth, as affording security against tary prowess, his patriotism, and his scenes of blood and desolation. God great virtues. At any time, and can bring trouble from afar; and I under any circumstances, it would confess, that I look with apprehenbe a great national calamity to lose sion at the slightest occasions of disour President; but the present pos content between this nation and ture of our affairs, and the high Great Britain. I fear lest they expectations which were indulged of should prove to be the precursor of relief for the country, under his a storm of unmitigated wrath upon prudent administration, give great both countries, which, if it do not poignancy to the national grief, and break them to pieces, will agitate greatly aggravate the sorrows of the both hemispheres with convulsive occasion.

throes, and carry terror to the stout2. Another special cause for fast est heart. Guilt hears the fuotsteps ing is, the delicate, not to say threat- of justice in the rustling leaf, and ening, aspect of some of our foreign sees the sword of the executioner in relations. Our relations with the every sunbeam. And, knowing how mother-country are at this time em guilty we are, I am alarmed. I fear barrassed with perplexing questions. the issue of every threatening oc. Conflicting interests call for the currence, in the present posture of wisdom and forbearance of both

our affairs. nations. And whether God will Under these circumstances, how avert the storm of war and blood does it become us to fast! to reshed, will doubtless depend upon turn to God with bitterness of spirit the manner in which we regard his and humiliation of soul, and plead providential dealings, and conduct for a respite! When God had, by ourselves under them. Our safety

the Prophet Jonah, denouncert bis will not depend so much upon the judgments against Nineveh," the justice of our cause in particular people of Nineveh believed God, questions of right, as on our moral and proclaimed a fast, and put on character in general. For, if we sackcloth, from the greatest of them

even to the least of them. And ers, and the blood of our patriot God saw their works, that they fathers. turned from their evil way; and I hope I am understood. I speak God repented of the evil that he had not as a Prophet, nor yet as an said that he would do unto them ; alarmist,-always disposed to awakand he did it not.” (Jonah iii. en unnecessary and painful appre. 5–10.) And thus deliverance came hensions. I talk not of what I could in the greatest extremities, and have it in my heart to desire. But, against all human probabilities. as a messenger of God, I declare his And if we would fly approaching counsel. Seriously and candidly, I vengeance, we must give full de see no way of salvation for us, but monstrations to-day, that we dread through speedy and universal amend. the wrath of Heaven, and would ment of our national manners. The approach the mercy-seat, and grasp smallest indication of a restoration the horns of the altar.

to a healthy moral tone, is to me 3. But, finally, if all other causes the star of hope twinkling through for fasting, humiliation, and prayer, the gloom and horrors of a dark and were left out of the question, we tempestuous night. I hail the prohave a sufficient one in the preva. mises and the hopes of this day with lence of the evils already noticed. indescribable emotions of joy. But These evils are within the body I “rejoice with trembling.” I fear politic, and are preying upon its lest the national thoughtfulness vitals. Had our President lived, should be “as the morning cloud, and should foreign governments and as the early dew which the wind leave us in possession of all our

driveth away.

I pray God, that legitimate rights upon the high seas, the present deep and serious feeling and give us all the territory we which pervades the land may prove claim, and should every cause of to be that godly sorrow which difficulty from abroad be quieted for worketh repentance unto salvation, ever; we should destroy ourselves ; not to be repented of,” and not we should sink by our own weight. “the sorrow of the world, which And now, if we present unto God worketh death." the acceptable sacrifice of a broken But would we have this the case, heart ; if we, with fasting, confes we must make haste, and delay not sion, and amendment, secure the in the work of reformation. The divine favour ; we have nothing to church must be clad with the whole fear. Though our Harrison is gone, panoply of God.

She must wage God can inspire his successor with an uncompromising war with sin, all the wisdom that the emergencies in all its various forms. Her weaof our government require. And if pons must not be carnal, but spiritall the powers of Europe should ual,-—"mighty through God, to the conspire against us, shielded by pulling down of strongholds. ” "the everlasting arms,” we are safe. These she must ply in the name of No weapon formed against us shall the God of hosts, looking to his prosper, if we are true to ourselves blessing as the only ground upon and to our God. But these deadly which she can hope for success. evils must be cured; the remedy She must avoid the employment of must be applied, and applied in all unsanctified instruinents, and time, or soon all will be lost. With- shun all forbidden alliances. God out reformation, we may easily read will not give his glory to another, our destiny in the history of the nor his sanction to the absurd prinfallen states of antiquity. Here we ciple of doing evil that good may can see the wrecks of empires and

The church is indeed God's republics, as beacons loo ng out chosen instrument of good to the above the fitful surges of time. world ; but she must have an adHere we may see the fate of the justment to the object of her orifair fabric of our happy government; ginal organization. Without this here, the end of the institutions she will become an object of abhorpurchased by the tears, the pray rence to God, and a curse to the world.

come.

LOCUSTS IN SOUTII AFRICA. We quote the following state or even fields, the crop for one sea. ments from Mr. Moffat's excellent son is destroyed. I have observed work, just published,—“Missionary a field of young maize devoured in Labours and Scenes in Southern the space of two hours. They eat Africa.” We shall take an early not only tobacco, and everything opportunity of calling more parti. vegetable, but also flannel and linen. cular attention to it; but we are The natives embrace every opporglad to be able, by one short extract, tunity of gathering them, which can which is all that our limits this be done during the night. Whenmonth allow, to notice the fact of ever the cloud alights at a place not its publication.-Edit.

very distant from a town, the inha. bitants turn out with sacks, and

often with pack-oxen, gather loads, After several years of drought, and return the next day with milwe had, in the early part of 1826, lions. It has happened that, in been blessed with plentiful rains, gathering them, individuals have and the earth was speedily covered been bitten by serpents; and on one with verdure; but our hopes of occasion a woman had been travel. abundance were soon cut off by ling several miles with a large bunswarms of locusts, which infested dle of locusts on her head, when a every part of the country, devouring serpent which had been put into the every species of vegetation. They sack with them, found its way out. had not been seen for more than The woman supposing it to be a twenty years before, but have never thong dangling about her shoulders, entirely left the country since. They laid hold of it with her hand, and, might be seen passing over like an feeling that it was alive, instantly immense cloud, extending from the precipitated both to the ground, and earth to a considerable height; pro. fed." The locusts are prepared for ducing, with their wings, a great eating, hy simple boiling, or rather noise. They always proceed nearly steaming, as they are put into a in the direction of the wind, those large pot with a little water, and in advance descending to eat any covered closely up: after boiling for thing they light upon, and rising in a short time, they are taken out, the rear, as the cloud advances and spread on mats in the sun to “They have no King ; but they go dry, when they are winnowed, some. forth, all of them, by bands,” and thing like corn, to clear them of are gathered together in one place their legs and wings; and, when in the evening, where they rest; perfectly dry, are put into sacks, or and from their immense numbers laid upon the house-floor in a heap. they weigh down the shrubs, and The natives eat them whole, adding lie at times one on the other, to the a little salt when they can obtain it; depth of several inches. In the or they pound them in a wooden morning, when the sun begins to mortar, and when they have reduced diffuse warmth, they take wing, them to something like meal, they leaving a large extent without one mix them with a little water, and vestige of verdure ; even the plants make a kind of cold stir-about. and shrubs are barked. Wherever When locusts abound, the natires they halt for the night, or alight become quite fat, and would even during the day, they become a prey reward any old lady who said that to other animals, and are eaten not she had coaxed them to alight within only by beasts of prey, but by all reach of the inhabitants. They are, kinds of game, serpents, lizards, on the whole, not bad food; and and frogs. When passing through wher, hunger has made them palat. the air, kites, vultures, crows, and able, are eaten as matter of course. particularly the locust-bird, as it is When well fed, they are almost as called, may be seen devouring them. good as shrimps. There is a speWhen a swarm alights on gardens, cies not eatable, with reddish wings,

rather larger than those described; extinguished, and the others walk and which, though less numero118, over the dead. Walls and houses are more destructive. The exploits form no impediment; they climb of these armies, fearful as they are, the very chimneys, either obliquely bear no comparison to the devasta or straight over such obstacles, just tion they make before they are able as their instinct leads them. All to fly, in which state they are called other earthly powers, from the fiercboyane. They receive a new name est lion to a marshalled army, are in every stage of their growth, till nothing compared with these dimithey reach maturity, when they are nutive insects. The course they called lelsie. They never einerge have followed is stripped of every from the sand, where they were leaf or blade of verdure. It is deposited as eggs, till rain has fallen enough to make the inhabitants of a to raise grass for the young progeny. village turn pale, to hear that they In their course, from which nothing are coming in a straight line to their can divert them, they appear like a gardens. When a country is not dark red stream, extending often extensive, and is bounded by the more than a mile broad; and from sea, the scourge is soon over,-the their incessant hopping, the dust winds carrying them away like clouds appears as if alive. Nothing but a to the watery waste, where they broad and rapid torrent could arrest alight to rise no more. Thus the their progress, and that only by immense flights which pass to the drowning them; and if one reached south and east rarely return; but the opposite shore, it would keep fresh supplies are always pouring the original direction. A small down from the north. All human rivulet avails nothing, as they sivim endeavours to diminish their numdexterously. A line of fire is no bers, would appear like attempting barrier, as they leap into it till it is to drain the ocean by a pump.

REVIEW

sures.

ensue.

A Letter to the Rev. Edward B. Pusey, D. D., Regius Professor of Hebrew in

the University of Oxford; being a Vindication of the Tenels and Character of the Wesleyan Methodists, against his Misrepresentations and Cen

By Thomas Jackson. 8vo. pp. 110. J. Mason. The times seein to present not the happiest consequences might the least alteration in regard to con

The churches of Christ, in troversy ; neither does the necessity this country, are now opposed by for it appear likely to pass away, por

their common enemies, infidels and its earnestness in any degree to abate. Romanists ; who show no disregard There is, indeed, one instance~a of the value of co-operation, to semost honourable one-of movement cure their eagerly desired, and now in a right direction. The General almost hoped for, objects : but not Assembly of the Scotch Church, at even the exultation of a vigilant and its last meeting, passed Resolutions active foe can arouse, to anything which distinctly recognised the ex. like a sense of danger, the professed istence of other churches; and descendants of the martyrs of would not allow the doctrinal dif- Smithfield. They appear to think ferences existing between themselves that the battle is over, the victory and the Wesleyan Methodists, to won; and that nothing now reexclude the latter from the pro. mains to be done, but to clear the posed recognition, and the inter. field of the few combatants who course to be founded upon it. Were hare not betaken themselves to this example followed in England, flight. For our own part, were it

Vol. XXI. Third Series. SEPTEMBER, 1842. 3 E

« 前へ次へ »