result from his Lordship's demise colonies! The first of which have are still unknown, and in all proba- been tried too often, to be worth bility, still unfixed. But there seems trying again ; and the second must no doubt the Duke of Wellington have destroyed what Buonaparte will proceed to Vienna, and that never valued or possessed, our naa' Mr. Peel will become the ministerial tional character for moderation and leader in the House of Commons, generosity. The only part of the

The direction of foreign affairs, treaty of peace which was mateand the principal management of his rially objectionable, is the cession Majesty's service in the lower house of Poland to Russia; and in excuse of parliament were the important for that article, it may be truly and arduous duties under which said, that in crushing one despot, Lord Londonderry's constitution we had made another so powerful, gave way, and a few words upon that there were some acts of injusthe state of each, and of his Lord- tice which he might commit with ship's method of conducting them, impunity. This was evidently unawill not be out of place.

voidable, and unless Lord LondonLord Londonderry succeeded to derry be condemned for the over. the office of Foreign Secretary when throw of France, he ought to be the last and the successful coalition forgiven for the aggrandisenient of against Buonaparte was about to be Russia. Since the conclusion of the formed. The continental powers peace of Paris, there bas been little were dispirited by repeated failures, opeu interference with foreign, naand intimidated by the gigantic tions upon the part of the British power of the Emperor of the French. court, and it is difficult to form an The only light in the political ho- opinion respecting that which has rizon was that which had begun to been confidently and secretly çardawn in Spain. · The British govern- ried on. From events, however, ment lost no time in augmenting which are known to all the world, their army, and in exciting the rest it is fair to presume that our governof Europe to make one struggle ment has acted with prudence and

Their example and advice moderation, and repeatedly held the prevailed, and of the splendid suc scales between various contending cess with which the coalition was parties. Nothing can be more hy. ultimately crowned, the British go- nourable than such a situation-it vernment niay fairly claim a very is a proof that we possess a moral large share. Lord Londonderry was influence in the world, and that the conspicuous throughout the whole yea or nay of Britain will be beard course of these transactions—he with respect, even when unaccom. was the constant advocate of in- panied with an appeal to her riches creased exertions, and at last he or her strength. The minister repaired to the head-quarters of the whose superintendance of foreiyu Allies, and by his presence and ex

affairs has led to this result, may ertions contributed mainly to the claim a high place among distinglorious result. Of the peace which guished statesmen; his loss, whofollowed he was the principal ad- ever may be his successor, must be viser; and the persons who maintain felt. He had an intimate acquaintthat its terms might have been ma. ance not merely with the transacterially improved, should consult tions, but with all the leading agents Buonaparte's opinions upon that of the last twelve years; his pubpoint in the Voice from St. Helend. lic and private character were known

The Ex-emperor joined cordially and respected at every foreign court in the censures of the English op- -and it is due to him to say, that if position. But what did he recom his death is not regarded as a signal mend as a substitute! Commercial public calamity, it is because his treaties, and retention of captured life had been so successfully em.


ployed in tranquilizing the Eu- enabled them to say, with much ropean republic, that there is no plausibility, that his parliamentary immediate call for extraordinary ex. reasoning was different from that on ertions to preserve the geveral which he really relied and acted. peace.

And as the Debates are read by The domestic administration of many who suppose that such a play Lord Londonderry is less conspiců- can be adopted, for no purpose exous than his foreign career. In the cept that of concealing the truth, the

latter he was justly regarded as the unpopularity of ininisters, we use the -Jeader of his party, and the ori- word in its radical sense, may be at

ginator of many important inéä- tributed, in great measure to the vasures; in the former he was em- ture of Lord Londonderry's speeches. ployed in executing and defending Had he fully and fairly inet the the joint plans of the cabinet raller speeches of his opponents, and enthan in striking out a line for bime abled the country to contrast his self. The union with Ireland was system with theirs, the state of the principally brought about by him- public or popular iind at the preand was an extraordinary undertak. sent time might have been very difing for so young a man. Since the ferent from what we are compelled death of Mr. Perceval he has been to wilness and lainent. No minister the chief speaker for government in ever made such warm political adthe House of Commons, and his herents out of doors as Mr. Piti; success in this department was reu and his secret, setting aside his trandered peculiarly striking by his no scendent abilities, was the straighttorious oratorical faults. Readiness, forwardness, perspicuity, and man. judgment, good 'temper, and good liness with which he avowed and sense made amends for all defi- defended the measures of his admi. ciencies. And in an age in which nistration. parliament is too often disgraced by If a graver fault attaches to the the personalities of certain well-memory of Lord Londonderry, as known individuals, Lord London- the parliamentary leader of his derry's example was as beneficial in party, if it should be thought that checking vulgarity and malevolence he was too reluctant to make the as the castigation which he occa necessary reductions, and waited sionally inflicted upon them.

till the house forced him into reThis is the bright side of Lord trenchment and economy, the auLondonderry's parliamentary cha. swer is, that the enormous diminuracter. On the other band, it must tion of government influence and be confessed, that he dealt too patronage which took place shortly largely in maneuvres, expedients, after the peace, made it inipossible and shifts—was too fond of meeting for an ordinary minister to do otherquestions indirectly-of replying by wise. The great man before men. an argumentum ad hominem, and of tioned might and would have played getting oft upon some technical plea. a nobler part; but the inferiority of l'his systeni succeeded better in the his friends and successors con house where its ingenuity was felt, pelled them to listen to the demands than

among the vulgar out of doors, of their various supporters; the who believed that government pos. number of demands increased as the sessed a substantive defence, and supply diminished, and the result wished to know its nature and ex has been that system which we content. He gave his opponents a great demn and regret, without denying advantage, by refusing to grapple the good intention of those by whom with their facts and arguments. He it was adopted.

X. Y: ; 9Wf706; W. X. Y; and C. N. S. T. liave been received.

[blocks in formation]



SERMON ON THE PARABLE they understand. And in them is OF THE SOWER.

fulfilled the prophecy of Esaias,

which saith, by hearing ye shall hear, LUKE viii, 11.

and shall not understand, and seeing The parable is this—The seed is the word ye shall ser, and shall not perceive; of God.

For this people's heart is waxed gross,

and their ears dull of hearing, and The mode of imparting information their eyes have they closed. In by ineaus of parables, or simple sto. these words then of Isaiah, which ries, is perhaps, the best with which

are quoted at length in St. Matthew, are acquainted. It at once but are only alluded to in St. Luke, amuses, teaches, and convinces. But we see the reason of our Lord's conthis was not the only reason why it duct. It was not to hide from them was adopted by our Lord. The the saving truths of the Gospel, that parable indeed before us is the more Christ spake to the multitude in .paimportant, as it occasioned him to rables, but it was to unfold them explain the cause of the frequent re- in that gentle and gradual manner, course which he had to this species which alone could be attended with of instruction. After he had deli.

From the ignorance and vered the parable of the sower to the the blindness in which their eyes had multitudes which surrounded him, so long been closed, it would have his disciples came privately to him, been dangerous to have admitted and desired an explanation of it. them at once to the full brightness What might this parable be? The of the Christian sun. To reclaim answer of our Lord is a remark mankind from error, to soften the able one: Unto you it is given to obstinate, and to enlighten the blindknow the mysteries of the kingdom ed soul is not the work of a moment, of God, but to others in parables, Even with all the advantages, which that seeing they might not see, and we at this day as Christians possess, hearing they might not understand. we must be content to pursue the In the account given by St. Matthew blessed task of teaching the igno. of the same occurrence, we find the rant, and reforming the criminal with reasons of our Lord stated still more much patience and circumspection, at length, xiii. 12. For whosoever But it was not only much blindness hath, to him shall be given, and he and ignorance with which our Lord shall have more abundance; but who had to contend, but with prejudices soever hath not, from him shall be most deeply rooted and established taken away even that he hath. There in their minds. In addition to this, fore speak I to them in parables, besides the multitudes wbo flocked because they seeing, see not, and in simplicity of heart to hear the hearing, they hear not, neither do words of eternal life, our Lord was REMEMBRARCER, No. 46,

4 E

surrounded by those whose desire stand the mysteries of the kingdom was to entrap him in the course of of God. his ministry, to hear something that Just and merciful then is the might give them an opportunity of Almighty both in what he reveals, persecution or revenge. Now as and in what he hides-from our eyes. the great aim of the Saviour was not in this our infant state, God often to irritate but to conciliate, he ge- speaks to us, as he did to the niulnerally chose to veil his doctrines titudes of old, in parables—in paunder such language, and to give rables practical and moral. The them in such a form as could least changing scenes of the world around offend.

us, the awful events which daily ocTo the multitudes therefore he cur before our eyes, a thousand spake in parables; and thus with- circumstances in the lives both of out raising any prejudice, or start. ourselves and others, are so many ing any difficulty, he led them on practical parables delivered to us by 'wards in the paths of life. The same our great Moral Teacher and Gomethod was pursued by St. Paul, vernor. This is the language in with respect to the Corinthians: I which God speaks to mankind; but coald not, says he, speak unto you against such lessons how often do as unto spiritual, but as unto car we close our understandings and nal, even as unto babes in Christ our liearts, seeing ưe will not see, I have fed you with milk, and not and hearing we will not understand. with meat, for hitherto ye were not To those whose hearts are prepared able to bear it.

by meditation and humility, as to Now a better way of carrying this the disciple of old, it is given to parpose into effect could not be know these mysteries of the kingdom imagined than by parables. Let us of God. To know them not with take the parable before us. The the full range of perfect vision, but story is simple, short, and natural; as through a glass darkly. To it would command the attention, these, however, enough is shewn to and fix itself in the memory. Come strengthen their contidence, to ani, ing from a teacher of religion, it mate their hope, and to guide their would of course be considered as feet over the apparently trackless containing more than should at first desart of life, to the city of eternal have met the ear. And hence would rest and peace. appear the end and purpose of the Such then were the reasons which whole, in the manner in which it induced our Lord to instruct the would affect the mind of the hearers. multitude in parables; and thus If their attention was not exerted, gently to instil into their hearts the if their interest was not excited, any knowledge and the desire of his farther instruction would have little heavenly Gospel. A better instance chance of success. Seeing they of this could not be taken than the would not see, and hearing they parable before us. Had he, without would not understand. But if on any preparation, in plain and simple the contrary, the parable should language, uttered the opinions, which lead them to the interpretation, if it this parable implies, how much preshould rouse the desire to hear more, judice would have been excited, and to see farther, how much would how much offence conceived by be acconplished? Their eyes would every class of his hearers, even at begin to open; and their ears to the very commencement of his mihear; their prejudices would abate, nistry. How many, as upon a later and their hearts give way, and thus occasion, would have walked no more gradually trained and prepared for with him. With us, to whom, as better things, they would here- Christians, it is given to know the after readily receive and under- mysteries of the kingdom of God,

I trust there is not the same danger. by an anxious desire for this our And yet, Christians as we are, we dearest interest, to prepare the heart do not like to be told too plainly, for its reception. even from this place of general in Are we among those on the rock? struction, of our wauderings from We have received the word of God the path of duty. But with the pa- with joy; we think it a privilege to rable and the interpretation before call ourselves Christians. Yet it us, can we close our eyes, or if we does not appear that we are much could, can we close those of our the better for this holy profession. Maker and our Redeemer? He that For a time, and that too often a very planteth the eye, shall he not see? short one, we go on tolerably well; Let us then, without fear of self but when temptation comes, we fall offence, fairly look to our hearts and away, our faith and hope languish, lives, and say to which of the four our innocence retreats, and little states in the parable we belong. more than an unprofitable name reFor to every one of us does the mains. The goodly plant, which Redeemer cry, as he did to the mul- should spring up and flourish unto titudes of old, He that hath ears the harvest of life withereth away; to hear, let him hear. For of the and why, because it lacketh moisseed sown in our hearts, and of the ture. The rocky soil of man's heart harvest, which that seed ought to is but ill calculated to nourish and produce, we must hereafter give a sustain the seed of life. Whence fearful account.

then is the moisture to proceed; not Are we among those by the way. from ourselves, or from the broken side?. The seed may be sown, but cisteros of our weak nature; but if the soil is too hard or too trodden from those streans that flow from down to receive it, that seed must the throne of God. It is the


of perish. Many indeed there are, God, daily and hourly distilling into in whose heart the word of God has our souls as the dew of heaven, not even for a moment taken root. which alone can give that moisture They hear, but it is without under- so necessary to the growth of piety standing and without concern. They and virtue. How many instances bear, not because they like it, but are there in the experience which because they cannot avoid it. They each of us has of himself, when neglect every warning, and stille the good resolutions which we have every thought of a world to come, made, and the good lessons which just as if in that world, they had we have learnt, wither away, and neither interest nor share. Whether bring no fruit; because God and men call themselves infidels or Chris- his grace are not with us. And why tians, the rejection is practically the are they not with us? because we same, and arises from the same are too negligent or too proud to cause, from a hardened, selfish, and ask. God never yet refused his proud heart. Yet can they imagine grace and protection to humble and ihat God will sow the seed, and not repeated prayer. Knowing then require an accquot of the larvest; how much we want, and how little are the words of life of so little va we have; knowing that without the lue, as to be abandoned to the evil influence of God's refreshing grace, angels of infidelity or indifference. the good seed will bring forih no If not, if there be an account, let fruit, let us, in the words of the them not lose a moment in preparing Psalmist, resolve O God, thou art for it. The seed of life never faileth, my God, early will I seek thee. My Christ is yet ready, again and again, soul also thirsteth after thee, my flesh to sow his eternal Word: it is for us longeth after thee in a barren and then, by humiliation, by prayer, and dry land, where no water is.

« ForrigeFortsett »