Imágenes de páginas
PDF
EPUB

* "

.

gate particulars; the Chancellor those of a final judgment, he ob-
Du Pradt, who was Cardinal and served, “Christ is our head, whose
Legate, investing them with similar kingdom and glory have not yet
authority. The brethren were now appeared. If the members were
compelled to go to Paris, but no to go before the head, the order of
satisfactory answers could be things would be perverted and pre-
drawn from them. They were con- posterous. But we shall follow
fined in separate apartments, and our Prince, when he comes in the
the novice, who had acted the glory of his Father, sitting on the
principal part, refused to make any throne of his majesty. In the mean
discovery, apprehensive of being time that liveth, which is in us, of
murdered by his elders; but assur- or from God, even our Spirit, be-
ance being given him that he should cause Christ liveth, who is our life;
not return to the convent, he con- for it would be absurd, that we
fessed the whole. The perpetra- should perish while our life ex-
tors were ordered to be taken back isteth. And because our life is in
to Orleans, and brought before the God, it is therefore with God and
cathedral, to acknowledge the im- happy
posture; but this sentence, mild as This sentiment seems correct;
it was, passed without execution, and perhaps the opposite notion
lest the government should appear arises from not making the due dis-

to countenance the reformed doc- crimination between the animal - trines, or offend the order of St. soul, which man has in common Francis *.

with the brute, and the spirit pecuMany such farces were played liar to him as man. However this by the friars, who used to pretend be, Archdeacon Blackburne, Bithat the spirits of the deceased shop Law, and some other divines often troubled this world, to in- of, the English Church, who seem duce their surviving relatives to to have been ensnared by a love of discharge vows which they had philosophical speculation, bave enmade to the saints, or pay for tertained sentiments concerning the masses to be repeated, that they sleep of the soul, resembling those might be delivered out of purgatory. against which our Reformer emLuther had written against these ployed his pen. The Archdeacon, fraudulent practices, and exposed in particular, has noticed his treathe false doctrines with which they tise with considerable asperity in were connected. Calvin also was the “ Historical View of the Conled by this affair to publish a trea- troversy concerning an Intermetise, entitled, Psycho-panny- diate State.” He allows him, chia;" by which word is signified, however, the honour, of laying the that the soul wakes throughout the basis of most of the arguments whole night of death, with all the used by theologians who have consciousness and sensibility ne- been considered the more orthocessary to the enjoyment of happi- dox. Such have declared that

He denounced the error of notion cheerless, unscriptural, and those who believe that the sou! Sadducean, which would deprive sleeps till the day of judgment, the spirit of a departing Christian whom he called Hypnologists, and (such as Le Fevre) of the sweet accused of departing from the sense hope of an immediate interview of Scripture. Because some had with his viour. objected to his system the silence The persecution continuing in of the word of God concerning re- France, Calvin deemed it expewards and punishments, excepting dient to leave the kingdom, and

[ocr errors]

ness.

Sleidan, L. ix.

* Psychop. fol. 35.

the enmity

fixed on Basle as the place of his Christian Religion," with a preliretreat. Accompanied by his bro- minary dedication to his sovereign, ther Anthony, and his friend Du whom he still regarded as a prince Tillet, he took a circuitous route open to conviction, but blinded through Lorraine. On their arrival by evil advisers. It is, however, at Metz, they were brought into suspected that this publication great difficulties through the perfidy never met the eye of the monarch. of one of their servants, who con- The Dedication has ever been trived to rob them of their money, esteemed a masterpiece of compoand being mounted on the fleetest sition. He speaks with the freehorse made his escape. But bor- dom of a man conscious that he is rowing ten crowns from another engaged on the side of truth, but servant, they were enabled to pro- at the same time with a tone of receed to. Strasburg, and from thence spect becoming his station; and to their place of destination. Here forcibly illustrates he contracted a friendship for Si- which the world will ever entertain mon, Grynæus and Wolfgang Ca- against the spirituality of the Gospito, and prosecuted the study of pel. The work itself is divided Hebrew.

into four books, and subdivided His intention was to remain at into eighty chapters. Of the latter, Basle with all possible privacy; but three are preparatory to the study circumstances soon brought him of revelation; two refer to those again into public notice. The French who depreciate the written word in monarch caused great disgust by comparison of private persuasion; his cruelties among those German five defend the peculiarities of the princes who were favourable to system usually called Calvinistic; the Reformation, which the Em-- seventeey argue against papal superor, opposed to Francis in his perstitions; and the remaining fiftyItalian politics, endeavoured to in- three give an able account of the flame: he therefore sent William doctrine and practice of the Unide Bellay-Langey, his Chamber- versal Church of Christ. The lain and Councillor, to whom the longest chapter is, an“ Exposition management of ecclesiastical af- of the Moral Law;" containing fairs 'was principally confided, to abundant proof that there is no ne

them that the persons cessary connexion between Calvinproscribed and punished were ism and Antinomianism. guilty of seditious practices; that “ The third use of the Law,” he he wished for an accommodation observes," which is the principal on the subject of religion by a one, and which is more nearly conmeeting of Parisian and German nected with the proper end of it, divines, and that he was particu- relates to the faithful, in whose larly desirous of a visit from Philip hearts the Spirit of God already Melancthon.” He also employed lives and reigns. For although the him to draw up a tract in Latin and Law is inscribed and engraved on in High Dutch, which was dispers- their hearts by the finger of God; ed over France and Germany, de- that is, although they are so exclaring that he had merely taken cited and animated by the direction necessary measures against cer- of the Spirit, that they desire to tain Anabaptists, who set up their obey God, yet they derive a twoown fanatic spirit in opposition to fold advantage from the Law. For Scripture, and despised govern- they find in it an excellent instrument. Calvin could not endure ment to give them from day to day this reproach on the professors of a a better and more certain under-, pure faith, and took occasion to standing of the Divine will to which publish his “ Institutes of the they aspire, and to confirm them

3

assure

in the knowledge of it; as, though is probable that it proceeded from a servant be already influenced by a false interpretation of his docthe strongest desire of gaining the trine; in the same manner as alapprobation of his master, yet it is most all errors have usually taken necessary for him carefully to in- some colour from the truth. But quire and observe the orders of his lest we ourselves fall into the same master in order to conform to them. error, let us accurately distinguish Nor let any one of us exempt him- what is abrogated in the Law, and 'self from this necessity: for no what still remains in force. When man has already acquired so much our Lord declares that he came wisdom, that he could not, by the not to destroy the Law, but to daily instruction of the Law, make fulfil it,' and that · till heaven and new advances into a purer know earth shall pass away, one jot or ledge of the Divine will. In the one tittle shall in no wise pass from, next place, as we need not only the Law, till all be fulfilled,' he instruction but also exhortation, the sufficiently proves that his advent servant of God will derive this far- will detract nothing from the obther advantage from the law; by servance of the Law; and with frequent meditation on it be will be sufficient reason, since the express excited to obedience, he will be end of his advent was to heal its confirmed in it, and restrained from transgressions. The doctrine of the slippery path of transgression. the Law remains therefore invio

“ Now, because the Law in re- lable; which by tuition, admonigard to the faithful has the force of tion, reproof, and correction, forms an exhortation, not to bind their and prepares us for every good consciences with a curse, but by its work*.” frequent admonitions to arouse their This excellent body of divinity indolence, and reprove their im- was designed by its author as inperfection; many persons, when troductory to a larger work. It was they design to express this libera. issued in 1536, but modified and tion from the curse, say that the enlarged by the compiler in sucLaw (I still speak of the moral law) cessive editions down to 1559. It is abrogated to the faithful: not continued to be the great standard that it no longer enjoins upon them of theology to what was called the that which is right; but only that Reformed Church on the Contirent; it ceases to be to them what it was and the man who presented himself before, no longer terrifying and for ordination to an English Bishop confounding their consciences, con- in the early part of the seventeenth demning and destroying them. century, ignorant of “ Calvin's And such an abrogation of the Law Institutes,” would have been conis clearly taught by Paul. It ap- sidered as obnoxious to only one pears also to have been preached worse charge of ignorance-that' of by our Lord, since he would not the Bible itself. have refuted the opinion con

[To be continued.] cerning his abolishing the Law, unless it had prevailed among the

* Allen's Translation, B. ii. c. vii. pp. Jews. Now as this opinion could not prevail without any pretext, it

12-14.

BIBLE MEETING AT CARRICK-ON-SHANNON. MR. EDITOR,

mory; but the seed was sown; and Being confined at home to-day it remained for Him, whose word by indisposition, I took up The it is, to cause it to spring up and Morning Herald of yesterday, bear fruit according to his good which was lying on my table, pleasure. I reached the age of when I cast my eye on a para- fifteen, when temptations thick graph from The Freeman's Jour- and strong began to assail me from i val, giving an additional account within and without; and what of the proceedings at the Bible could I have done at a time when meeting at Carrick-on-Shannon. my own lieart joined in league with I could not help lamenting that the tempter, had it not been for brevity (so essential at public the fulfilment of that promise, that meetings) should restrain the de- “ when the enemy comes in like a fenders of the general reading of flood, the Spirit of the Lord shall the Scriptures from mentioning lift up a standard against him.” many of the most cogent reasons

Whatever the temptation was, for indiscriminate reading of that passages of Scripture, long forSacred Book, which the young as gotten, came fresh into my mind, well as the old, the ignorant as and with such power as to suffuse well as the learned, may find to be my cheeks with a blush which “ a light unto their feet and a lamp I could feel rising upon them ! unto their path;" and I speak from And had it not been for these my own personal experience. convictions, brought on by hav

I was born, Sir, of poor pa- ing read the Scriptures, I had rents, so poor, that they could not many years ago been numbered afford to send me to school; they with the slain ; another melancholy taught me to read as well as they proof that ignorance is the ready were able, in which I have in- handmaid to vice, and to those proved myself by degrees. I was vices in particular that lead so sent out at the tender age of twelve many youths to the chambers of the years as a shop-boy. The only grave. There are many most imbook I possessed was a small portant truths which may be read pocket Bible, the gift of my pious in private, which, as society is grandmother; to which I added, now constituted, no minister would with the first half-crown I could ever venture even tu hint at in spare, an Entick's Dictionary: public*; and, therefore, if the The persons with whom I had Bible is not read in our retirement, been placed paid no attention to we shall be ignorant of many my morals, nor did they enforce things, without a knowledge of the observance of the Sabbath ; which we cannot please God, nor so that I seldom attended a place shall we seek an interest in the of worship, and subsequently for Redeemer; for those who believe years I never entered the house of in him must repent of all their sins; God. But I had been made to read and how can they repent of those my Bible at home, and I vene- sins which they do not know to be rated the book, and often read it such? to pass away the time, when left And, Sir, I would remind those at home by my employers to keep who say that the Scriptures are the house while they visited on the difficult to be understood, that they Sabbath; but I did not understand it when I read it, nor did I take

* See Prov. ii. 16--19; vi. 24-35; pains to treasure it up in my me

vii. 5-27; ix. 13-18, &c. JAN. 1825.

are quite as difficult to the learned desirous of undoing. But men hy as the unlearned, where both are wisdom know not God, or Hal.. unenlightened by the Spirit of God; ler had been as good a Christian for “ the wisdom of ihis world is as Newton; but one

was taken foolishness in the sight of God.” and the other left. The Bible, It is promised, that “ the Spirit Sir, never robs our churches and shall take of the things of Christ chapels of hearers, where the Gosand show them unto us.” “ The pel is preached; but many, on the Spirit of truth shall lead you into contrary, would never have atall truth.” And our Lord assures tended there but for reading that us, that his father is more willing book, which admonishes us not to to give his Holy Spirit to them forsake the assembling ourselves that ask it, than a father is to give together, as the manner of some is. bread to his child. Let the poor And the more we read the Bible, man kneel over his Bible and pray the more we shall desire to have its for the enlightening influence of sacred truths enforced and exthe Holy Spirit, and then the way- plained to us. We do not comfaring man, though a fool as to prehend every part as soon as we learning, shall not err therein. read it, for perhaps the time for its

I would ask those gentlemen applicability to us is not yet come. who oppose the diffusion of the But it is recorded,

6. Then shall ye Sacred Scriptures, why any mi- know, if ye follow on to know the nister, who professes to preach the Lord.” truth, should object to his hearers The Scriptures afford to every imitating the Bereans, whom our man a portion of meat in due seaLord commends as being more son; but there may be portions of noble than those of Thessalonica, it not intended for me but for because they searched the Scrip- others; for there is milk for babes, tures daily to see if those things and meat for strong men. The were so ? Surely it would tepd to essentials for faith, doctrine, and establish and confirm sound doc- practice are written as with a suntrines, and strengthen the hands of beam; and if more be needful for those whose preaching accords the sincere believer to know, God with the word of God. And I feel will reveal even that unto him. persuaded that the eyes of the And, Sir, as to some wresting Roman Catholics, and others, will- the Scriptures to their own debe opened by the opposition their struction, it is what is foretold in teachers are making to the dissemi- those Scriptures, that they would nation of the Scriptures.

prove a savour of life unto life" Sir, If a man suspects that the unto some, while they proved bread he eats is adulterated for savour of death unto death”. to gain, has he not a right, if he can, others. But this happened to to see the materials of which it is priests, Levites, Scribes, and Phamade ? Much more, then, if he risees, as well as to the ignorant suspects that the bread of life is and unlearned. Nay, even while adulterated for the same mercenary the common people heard the Gospurpose.

pel gladly, these learned lawyers Far, very far be it from me to and teachers rejected that Gospel, undervalue learning, for to learning persecuted those who received we owe much. But for it, we had it, and pronounced them cursed not had the Scriptures in our own because they knew not the law, tongue. But what one set of mixed up as it was with the traditions learned men have done as instru- of the fathers; which is too much ments in the hands of God, other the case in the present day, when learned men of the present day are men are forbidden to read the

66

a

« AnteriorContinuar »