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order to check the uncharitable judgments of those, who, having had either more abundant opportunities than their less fortunate brethren, or greater want of caution in making up their opinion, look with suspicion upon all who, however they receive the doctrine, withhold their assent from any particular manifestation. The rash persons are also concluding that no one can be a child of God without manifesting some supernatural power. It is true, indeed, that there can be no healthy church without having all the Spirit and all the gifts in it; and that our not manifesting these is a proof of the low estate into which the church is fallen; and is a sign of unholiness, which all lively members, who love holiness and conformity to their Head, will deeply mourn over, and pray to be recovered from : but let not these glorious gifts be abused, by having the question concerning them mixed up with another entirely distinct; nor let any child of God be led to doubt his heavenly Father's love, or his own adoption in Christ Jesus, in consequence of the increased sense of his low condition, and dissimilarity to the standard attainable by him through the manifested power of the indwelling Holy Ghost.
Being, then, fully and firmly convinced, by every examination which we have been able to give the question, that the Person of God the Holy Ghost is now speaking in, and distinct from, the persons of the individuals whose organs He constrains for that purpose, as He did in the Corinthian church, and indeed in all the primitive churches; the example of that church shews us that these precious gifts may be abused ; and the
l example of Christendom shews us that by abuse the Spirit may be quenched, and his light concealed, if not totally extinguished. That such has been the case is undeniable; and it is the apprehension of a similar consequence recurring from similar abuse which marks the importance of the present discussion. “ The Greek word Paraclete,” says an old writer,
rendered the Comforter in the Gospel of St. John, is in his First Epistle (ii. 1) rendered an Advocate: but the word in its derivation is capable of a much more extended meaning than *either or both those words do import; which appears by the different constructions the English version often puts upon the same word, in the verb, as well as noun. Thus, in 1 Thess. ii. 2 mapakinous is translated erhortation; in which text and others, says Chrysostom, the word means teaching: and indeed the context clearly shews it; for St. Paul's preaching is there termed the Gospel, or good message of God; he therefore who despised it, despised not man, but God, who had given unto him his Holy Spirit. Now exhortation, when it is applied to the Holy Spirit, carries in it, throughout the New Testament, the nature and
validity of an authoritative command: nay, though the same word be rendered beseech, as sometimes, or persuade; thus in 2 Thess. iii. 12, we command (mapayyehouev, rather declare), &c. And thus, when the Apostle exhorts that supplications, prayers, and giving of thanks be made for all men, we with one consent construe it a Divine command to do so.
“ The same Greek word is in Acts xxviii. 20 rendered called for, and properly agrees with the derivation, which signifies any sort of speaking aloud, or calling out to; and so well suits to public preaching, and is so applied, not only to the prophetical inspiration of St. Paul above-mentioned, but in 1 Pet. v. 12: therefore the same word is joined with other ways besides exhortation used in preaching the word, as 2 Tim. iv. 2 and elsewhere. Seeing, then, the English translation of the word, with the sense concurring, does allow us to understand by it, to plead as an advocate, to speak aloud in exhorting and commanding, as in the function of prophetic preaching, let us have recourse to that great promise of our Saviour to his church, John xiv. 16, • I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another (Paraclete) Comforter, that He may abide with you for ever, even the Spirit of Truth. The following verses plainly shew that other Paraclete was to supply his place: therefore our Lord, by way of explanation, adds, I will not leave you orphans, I will come to you.' ....All which, in this and in the two following chapters, is ascribed to that Paraclete, saying, “He shall teach you all things; and when he is come, he shall testify of me. I have many things to speak unto you, but ye cannot bear them now: howbeit, when the Spirit of Truth is come, he shall guide you into all truth : he shall not speak of himself, but whatever he shall hear that shall he speak : he shall glorify me, for he shall receive of mine, and declare (avayyedei, publish) it to you, and shall declare things to come: when he is come, he will reprove
the world of sin, and convince it of judgment,' &c.
Seeing therefore our Lord, the great Prophet, Teacher, and Master of his church, has explained to us thus the office of that Comforter to his church, how he would not leave us orphans, but come again, and be represented by the Paraclete, another like himself, that should speak unto us, testify of hin, guide us, reprove, and declare to us many things he had not done; all these do indeed agree with the character of an advocate from, and for, God pleading with men, and with public authoritative preaching, exhorting, and commanding by the prophet; and all these make up a complete definition of the Spirit of prophecy, which is the testimony of Jesus, and of a Comforter such another as our Lord himself: for if the presence of the head and husband ought to be the chief delight and comfort of
the spouse; so also the presence of Christ with his church, extraordinarily signified, her main complacency and joy; and the presence of the Spirit, Christ's representative, like that said to Moses (Exod. xxxiii. 14), “My presence shall go with thee, and I will give thee rest.' In this sense it will be found that the primitive Christians did expect that the said Comforter would abide with them for ever; and whether any dislike or contempt on the part of the espoused church were not the just cause that He did not do so, we refer to further search into that matter *.
Unless we are very much mistaken, God has been continually striving with his church. His Spirit has been always at intervals manifesting himself in a supernatural manner to her : but she has been ignorant of him; and the pastors, who ought to have guided her, have been dumb dogs, lying, and given to slumber. And the grounds of this our opinion we shall now proceed to state, beginning with instances of persons now living. A German clergyman, formerly a Popish priest, was converted several years ago, by a direct revelation from Heaven, to the doctrine of justification by faith. He was not disobedient to the heavenly vision, and immediately preached all that he knew upon the subject. One day, while meditating upon whether he ought to continue his practice of extempore preaching, or whether he had not better write his sermons beforehand, seeing that the subjects on which he had to treat were now so new to him, supernatural fire suddenly descended
his consumed it before his eyes. He was still in great error upon many other branches of doctrine, and, amongst others, disbelieved in the existence of the devil. In walking through a neighbouring town, he was seized hold of by a maniac, who with great strength threw him on the ground, then raised him up, and dashed him to the ground again, crying out all the time, “ You don't believe in me, don't you ?” On hearing this the priest was moved to command the evil spirit, in the name of Jesus of Nazareth, to come out of the maniac; when instantly the spirit obeyed, leaving the maniac quiet and in his right mind. - This narrative is given in a tract published either by this clergyman himself or by his authority; but since we have it not before our eyes, we abstain from giving the names, while answer for the substance of the facts.
It is equally well known that M. Zeller, the pious and excellent conductor of the establishment for the education of mini
* This extract, as well as some others, is taken from a work printed in 1713, entitled,“ The general Delusion of Christians touching the Ways of God revealing Himself to and by the Prophets, evinced from Scripture and primitive Antiquity; and many Principles of Scoffers, Atheists, Sadducees, and wild Enthusiasts refuted;" a new edition of which is in the press.
sters and schoolmasters at Bauch, near Basle, was converted by a dream, in which he was represented as weighed in the balance of the sanctuary and found wanting.
At Glay, near Montbelliard, in France, there is an establishment similar to that of M. Zeller. There was lately in it a young man of dull habits and small intellectual or physical powers. On a sudden he was observed to become insensible to every thing that was passing around him; and in that state he continued several weeks. During this whole period, instead of speaking little and with difficulty, he would pray aloud with the greatest fluency, and in beautiful language. His physical powers were developed in a mode equally unusual : instead of being heavy and inactive, he would ascend the scaffolding of the house, which was at that time being built, and run along the parapets like a squirrel, to the terror and astonishment of the workmen. His mother was sent for to see him : up to that period she had evinced no earnestness on the subject of religion: he preached Jesus to her, and she became converted, and has continued a consistent, pious woman ever since. He himself, however, is said to have subsequently renounced all religious observances, and at this present time scarcely makes any profession of religion.
A pious French minister, settled in Paris, had, within these few months, a young man as a pupil who had fits of abstraction of a similar nature to the other at Glay, with, however, very different effects. The physical energies of this young man were not improved, nor were his intellectual faculties on other subjects quickened ; but if a Greek or Latin book was presented to him he would pass his hand over the page, while his eyes remained closed, and instantly repeat the contents, and render the original in good French. His instructor, fearing some trick, and that he was a better scholar than had been supposed, gave him a Hebrew Bible, of which language it was morally certain that he did not understand a word, and the same effect followed.
Revelations of a very extraordinary nature have been made to several individuals in the congregation of M. Bonifas, of Grenoble. There is a great anxiety on the part of those concerned that these should not be published ; and we therefore refrain from reporting such as have reached our ears: the reasons for this concealment may be right or wrong, which will be considered subsequently.
It is now some years since Madame del Schneider, the wife of a clergyman in the neighbourhood of Basle, spoke by an alleged preternatural impulse. For some time, however, she has ceased to do so; but it is now reported that she has recommenced. On these last two subjects a friend writes, “ J'ai pleusieurs tomes de discours des personnes extraordinaires prononcés à Paris il y a
nombre d'années. Il y a aussi des personnes de ce genre à Grenoble. M. le pasteur Bonifas m’a parlé de leurs discours comme de choses tellement remarquables, qu'on ne les communiquoit pas a chaqu’un. En Allemagne Madame Schneider, qui a beaucoup parlé, recommence avec une nouvelle force.” It is also said, on the same authority, that the descriptions given by this lady of the judgments about to come on Europe are so dreadful and detailed, that some persons, who used to take them down while she uttered them, have been seized with so great terror as to be unable to continue to do so.
The general term in use amongst religious people on the Continent, for those who have been the subjects of these extraordinary visitations, is CLAIRVOYANTS. This has been owing to visions being the most usual manner in which they have been visited.--The preceding recent facts might besufficient to shew that there is, and has been for a considerable time past, supernatural agency at work. With respect to what has occurred in the ages immediately preceding our own, good evidence is found in the various writers on both sides of the question of animal magnetism ;-a question which has excited comparatively little interest in England, but which has occupied a considerable portion of the scientific mind of France, Germany, and Russia, for a long time past. Both parties unite in the admission that extraordinary circumstances have occurred : the one lays claim to them as due to the credit of animal magnetism; the other denies all merit to animal magnetism, but says that there are in the world a certain number of people whose brain is always under such a state of excitement that a variety of circumstances may induce it to act in an extraordinary manner, which the Mesmerites call animal magnetism, and which fanatics call miracles; and that this is the mode by which philosophers account for the miracles of the Jews, the Pythonesses of antiquity, and the casting out of devils of Christian sects. “ L'histoire philosophique de l'homme prouve, que toutes les fois qu'il se trouve exposé a une cause permanente d'exaltation morale portée a un certain degré, son organization devient susceptible d'eprouver une modification singuliere, qui donne naissance à des phenomenes physiques ou intellectuels dont l'ensemble caracterise un état particulier, que j'ai designé sous le nom d'extase. Cet état, qui a joué un grand role dans l'etablissement de toutes les religions, et de toutes les sectes religieuses, s'est egalement presenté parmi les malades qu’on exorcisait dans les siècles d'ignorance, et chez lesquels il donnait lieu aux phenoménes qui faisaient croire à l'existence de la possession.”
We shall dismiss the question of animal magnetism with a very few words. It is known to all our scientific readers, that discoveries have been recently made on the reciprocal action of all material