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Gospel? Let the Apostle determine. Thus, in exhorting the Galatians" to “ The grace of God, which bringeth hold fast that libertywherewith Christ salvation, hath appeared to all men, had made them free," he warns such teaching us, that, denying ungodli- among them as looked to be justiness and worldly lusts, we should fied by the law, that they were live soberly, righteously, and godly, fallen from grace; and demands of in this present world;" so that not them, “ Are ye so foolish? having only do those fail of the grace of begun in the Spirit, are ye now God, who are remarked in society made perfect in the flesh ?” Hence for the flagrancy of their sins, so his earnest entreaty to the Corinthat there is no specious pretext for thians, that they would not receive their conduct, but the description the grace of God in vain ; hence his applies to all who do not live soberly, caution to the Hebrews, “ Let us righteously, and godly; all whose fear, lest, a promise being left us of lives are contrary to those rules of entering into his rest, any of you Christian holiness which it is the should seem to come short of it ;" object of the Gospel to enforce. and again, “ The just shall live by
3. And hence, another class may faith; but if any man draw back, my be mentioned ; for though there soul shall have no pleasure in him.” should neither be professed con- All these passages, and others of a tempt, nor even immorality of life, like kind, were meant to guard us still there will be a coming short of from the dangers of apostacy, and the grace of God, if there be not of eventually failing of the grace of true conversion and sanctification God; despising those final and eterof soul. In order that the fruit may nal blessings, which it was the be good, it is necessary to make purpose of God, in the revelation the tree good : where the heart is of his Gospel, to make known and corrupt, such must assuredly be the to communicate. practice. In the opinion of the Having now seen something of world, the conduct may be deem- the evil to be avoided, let us proed worthy of praise rather than ceed to notice, of condemnation ; but if it be not Secondly, the necessity of taking founded upon the influence of God's diligent heed for this purpose. Holy Spirit in the soul, in his sight 1. The necessity may be shewn it is defective and unholy. There from the general condition of those can be no scriptural holiness without who profess and call themselves devout and grateful affections to- Christians. Of the multitudes who ward the Lord Jesus Christ, and constitute the visible church of faith in his name; and wherever these Christ, who profess his religion and exist and flourish, they will be fol- call themselves by his name, how lowed by a hearty obedience to his few comparatively are under the will. By virtue of the union of the abiding influence of the Spirit of branches with Christ, the true vine, Christ? How worldly are their they will bring forth much fruit to dispositions ! How little concerned the praise and glory of God. for eternal things! How prone are
The Apostle had probably in his they to follow their own inclinations view, while suggesting this admo- rather than the precepts of God's nition, not merely those who never holy word, and to set their affections in any measure experienced the upon the things of this world, rather renewing and purifying operation than
upon those above! If we take of Divine grace, but those likewise the Holy Scriptures as a rule of judgwho fall from their stedfastness and ment, and in them we have the only are guilty of apostacy. To this sub- true guide, what must be our con ject he frequently adverts : being clusion, but that the great majority not more desirous to bring men into of Christians, so called, are destitute the right way, than to keep them in it. of the sanctifying energy of the Holy Spirit and appear in the way as of something more figurative than to fail of the grace of God! real : but the Scriptures describe
2. The importance of looking them as having a powerful and exdiligently to this point, will be tensive efficacy : as in league with further seen from the fact that with an evil heart, and an evil world, and out great care we certainly must exercising over the great body of fail.
mankind an authority which conFor, consider the depravity of verts them into his slaves and vashuman nature. We are born into sals. It is not merely that they do the world with a “heart deceitful his works; but he rules in their above all things, and desperately hearts: he secures on his side their wicked;" and we take counsel from impressions, their thoughts, and this deceiver: counsel, which, if their desires : if any good seed have implicitly received, will keep us at fallen upon the soil, he takes it a distance from our Redeemer, and away: and without more diligent make us strangers for ever to his attention than men generally pay to grace. Is there not need, then, to the subject, and more determined look diligently into this matter? resolution than they commonly exWill not the thoughtless and the hibit, they continue in that servicareless be necessarily the victims tude, and the grace of God is proof its deception ? And is it not claimed to them in vain. important to be upon our guard So sure, then, are we, without great against this unsuspected and treach- caution, to fail of the grace of God: erous enemy? So clear is this and what are the consequences of point that, according to the state. this failure? I might mention the ment of the wise man, “he that evil effects upon others, to which trusteth his own heart is a fool." the Apostle alludes in this chapter ;
We may further mention the cus- but I confine myself to the indivitoms and allurements of the world. dual himself. To fail of the grace How apt are we to follow a multi- of God, is to fail of pardon and peace tude ! how ready, more especially, and joy; of support in life, and to deem the conduct of the more hope in death : it is to lose the respectable part of society, although soul; it is to have no part in the manifesting in no degree the Chris- resurrection of the just, no share of tian character, and founded in no the felicity of the righteous; but to just sense upon the principles of be doomed to the second death, Scripture, as an excuse and sanc- to that worm that dieth not, and tion for evil! And, for the most the fire that is not quenched. And part, we suspect no error in this do not these considerations attest judgment. We repel the intima- the necessity of looking diligently tions which whisper to us that this to this matter? Is it possible to is not religion : we regard as illibe- bestow upon it too much attention, ral and unjust the notion that such to be more careful, more consideChristians may after all be Christians rate, more earnest than the case only in profession : and unless we demands ?
demands? Is a slight and superlook diligently into the subject, we ficial inquiry to be deemed sufficient, never suspect that these men can when interests like these are involv. possibly be destitute of the favoured in the issue of it? We go on, of God, or fail of his grace.
therefore, to notice, And to involve us more deeply in Thirdly, the means to be pursued these erroneous views, and to re- in order to fulfil the admonition, tain us in this ignorance, no device “Looking diligently, lest any man is wanting on the part of that ma. fail of the grace of God.” lignant spirit which worketh in the What, then, is to be done to children of disobedience. Persons guard against this hazard ? are apt to speak of his operations, 1. Get a right sense of the value CHRIST. OBSERV. No. 338.
of the blessing. Be not satisfied willing sacrifice, holy, and acceptwith a merely formal acknowledg. able unto God. ment of its excellence; but medi- 3. It is implied in these observatate seriously and devoutly upon the tions, but it deserves a distinct nobenefits which it offers : upon the tice, that you must pray earnestly infinite price at which they were for the continual aid and guidance procured : upon that love and of the Holy Spirit. Whilst watchmercy and goodness, which shine ing over your thoughts, and words, forth in every part of this wonderful and works, and looking diligently revelation, and upon the gracious with all care and circumspection provision which has been made for not to yield to the suggestions of an your welfare, both in time and in evil heart, or to the corrupt example eternity. Are we not apt to look of the world, or to the devices of at these things rather under a ge- your great enemy; you must be neral and incomprehensive view, conscious that your success in every than in a way to bring the subject part of the Christian course depends home to our feelings and con- upon the influences of the Spirit sciences ? Are we so well acquaint- of God. That Spirit is promised ed with the records of eternal truth, to them that ask it and the weakas to perceive the suitableness of est Christian, thus fortified from this Gospel to our own case, the above, shall prove more than constate of hopeless misery to which queror in fighting the good fight of
were reduced for want of it, faith. His knowledge may be li. and the privileges and prospects to mited, but here he finds wisdom : which it is intended to raise us? his fears may be urgent, but here Were this knowledge duly cherish- is one that bids him fear not : his ed in our hearts, so that we could perplexities may be great, but here rightly appreciate the greatness of he finds a guide through all the inthe blessing proposed to us, with tricacies of his way, and is enawhat diligence should we strive to bled to contemplate the dark scene make our calling and election sure ! as it is shifting around him, with a
2. In the next place, be careful firm persuasion, that all things shall to make a diligent use of the grace work together for his good. It is already imparted. God is pleased by prayer that he makes his requests to bestow his grace upon us, not known unto God; and in answer to that we may hide it in a napkin, prayer are all his wants supplied. but that we may convert it to use : In concluding the subject, I that we may improve it to a wise would very briefly subjoin one very and holy end. If he have given important reflection which it sugus any measure of faith, any en- gests ; namely, largement of heart, any consola- That diligence and care are netions of the Gospel, any hope of cessary to the Christian calling.immortality, that we may act in The prevailing opinion seems to conformity with the mercy thus be exactly the reverse.
That care imparted, and the supply of the and diligence are requisite in worldSpirit which has been vouchsafed ly pursuits, is universally admitted : to us. If you are placed under but it appears to be generally sup, circumstances of trial, let it be seen posed, that nothing is more easy that your trust is in God: if you are than to secure the salvation of the called to do good, let your Chris- soul. But what, then, can be the tian zeal have its full operation : meaning of admonitions like that in suffer not worldly or selfish principle the text ? Why were the Apostles to impede and obstruct it : if you so urgent upon this subject, exhorthave to endure the cross, contem. ing their hearers continually to vigiplate the joy set before you, and lance, self-examination, persevercease not to present yourselves a ance; expatiating upon the difficul
H. S. C. H.
ties and dangers of their vocation : once delivereth the wine to two comcalling upon Christians not to sleep municants. They conceived one cup as do others; but to be constantly enough for a small parish, and that on their guard, and to put on the greater were easily able to purchase whole armour of God? Why, but more for themselves." because it is necessary thus to act ;
CLERICUS SENIOR. to look diligently, lest, after all their professions of allegiance to Christ, they should discredit his cause, and come short of his rest. How then DEFENCE OF ANTI-PEDOBAPTISTS do we conduct ourselves? Do we
AGAINST exercise this caution ? earnest as we ought to be? do we tothe Editorofthe Christian Observer. run patiently the race set before us, and engage heartily in the Christian I have read your correspondent conflict? With what earnestness H. S. C. H.'s vision, and am happy should we strive and watch and to add, that I consider it, upon the pray against spiritual carelessness whole, well managed; and, with one and indolence! which, wherever they exception, I do not perceive that exist, are of most baneful tendency, any of the parties noticed in it have and fatal to the life of religion in reason to complain of being misrethe soul.
presented. The writer has bappily brought forward the true test by
which the Christian may ascertain FORM OF ADMINISTERING THE what is wrong in himself, or in his LORD'S SUPPER.
system. In proportion as a man
can universally adopt the language Tothe Editorofthe Christian Observer. of the Psalmist, " Thy word is very
pure, therefore thy servant loveth As the practice which our increasing it:" "I esteem all thy precepts population has rendered necessary concerning all things to be right;" in many parishes, of administering he may be assured, that he is right, the elements in the sacrament of the and will proceed aright: and just Lord's Supper to more than one com- in proportion as a man shrinks from municant at once, notwithstanding the Divine word, and is disposed to it is sanctioned by all the bishops wish for additions or curtailments, in their mode of confirming, is by he possesses evidence that some some persons deemed an innovation, thing is wrong and requires corpermit me to direct the attention of rection. your readers to an observation of Having thus adverted to the geFuller, in his Church History, book neral subject, I proceed to notice VII., from which it clearly appears, the exception to which I have allud- . that it was usual, even at the Re. ed : and as my remarks are purely formation, to administer to more defensive, I rely upon your candour than one communicant at a time. for their insertion. We are on the Speaking of the disposal of the eve of times when it will be sinfully church plate by the king's commis- unwise for Evangelical Christians sioners at the period of the Dissolu- to misunderstand and misrepresent tion, Fuller remarks, “ An author each other. telleth us that (amongst many which The following passage, from notes they found) they left one silver cha- by the editor of the last edition of lice to every church, too narrow a Gale's Answer to Dr. Wall, is subproportion to populous parishes, mitted to the consideration of your where they might have left two at correspondent H. S. C. H.--" The the least; seeing
for expedition sake, Baptists consider the whole of their at great sacraments, the minister at case to be contained in the English Bible; a translation of the original such a representation. I leave the Scriptures conveyed to them by reader to consider whether it be their opponents. While they do not possible that a religious party who sbrink from an examination of their maintain all the articles of evangesentiments by any of the rules of lical faith, and whose leaders have sound criticism, or 'going about been men of piety and good sense, with the watch-candle of learning,' could be guilty of such an absuras Lord Bacon phrases it, into dity, as to represent their cause to every corner of the subject, here the world as such a baseless fabric is that one great Light, wbich is as it would be, if, in their own estienough for them and their preten- mation, the history of the New sions : and to that knowledge of the Testament from the day of PenteDivine will which may be obtained cost, and the Epistles, did not afford from it, they confidently look in sufficient matter for its support this country for the ultimate triumph against all majorities. of their arguments.”
The Baptist cause, and its whole Whatever may be the faults of history, appears, as it were, in the the Baptist party, assuredly there Christian firmament but as a cloud is not a pious and sensible man no bigger than a man's hand ; but, among them who entertains any if I am not greatly mistaken, a doubt of the sufficiency of Holy careful observer of the signs of the Scripture to settle the question times might perceive that it presages as to the propriety of baptizing much. But I forbear to prophecy, infants. H. s. c. H, is not con- and will conclude by reasserting, that tent with stating that a Baptist whatever may prove to be truth in must entertain a wish that some the issue, every intelligent Baptist, additions might be made to the in the present state of things, is word of God, in order to a satisfac- fully persuaded that this is an apotory settlement of the question on cryphal practice; which, notwithhis side ; but he represents him as standing it is as it were the cement admitting that the truth respecting of the whole fabric of nominal infant baptism was not brought to Christianity, and also dear to the light till sixteen centuries after the hearts of multitudes of the truly day of Pentecost;" and that the pious, yet, by the light of Holy Pedobaptists have the practice of Scripture, will in due time be the primitive church from the apos- brought to its end. tolic age wholly on their side."
AN ADMIRER OF THE CHRISTo those who have read fairly
OBSERVER, BUT on this subject I need not say any ANTI-PEDOBAPTIST. thing to expose the incorrectness of
ON ITINERATING LIBRARIES.
obtained much experience on the
subject, being engaged as the maTothe Editorofthe Christian Observer. nager of the East-Lothian Itinerating
Libraries, I submit to your readers A few months ago, I was happy to the following queries and replies, observe a letter in the Christian which may suggest some useful inObserver, requesting information formation to persons disposed to concerning the best mode of con- introduce the plan into their neighducting itinerating libraries. Having bourhood. I shall also be happy to