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aviour; in vain is salvation hoped for from others that offer my se demselves. Thou art my God and Father.” Not that he is the already his child, but he chooses him, and comes to him, that he
may be one of his children ; as in Jer, iji. 19. Israel calls God his Father, as the way to be put among the children, and to be one of them, and not as being one already; and in ver. 21-23. she is not brought out of a careless and secure state by knowing that the Lord is her God, but she is first brought to consideration and sense of her sin and misery, weeping and supplications for mercy, and conviction of the vanity of other saviours and refuges, not only before she has assurance of her good estate, but before she is brought to fly to God for refuge, that she may be in a good estate.
As to the instance of Job, I would only say this: I think, while in his state of sore affliction, though he had some great exercises of infirmity and impatience under his extreme trials, yet he was very far from being in such a frame as I intended, when I spoke of a secure, careless, carnal frame, &c. I doubt not, nor did I ever question it, that the saints' hope and knowledge of their good state, is, in many cases, of excellent benefit to help them against temptation and the exercises of corruption.
With regard to the case of extraordinary temptation, and buffeting of Satan, which you mention, I do not very well know what to say farther. I have often found my own insufficiency as & counsellor in such like cases, wherein melancholy and bodily distemper have so great a hand, and give Satan so great advantage, as appears to me in the case you mention, If the Lord do not help, whence should we help? If some Christian friends of such afflicted, and, as it were, possessed persons, would,, from time to time, pray and fast for them, it might be a proper exer. cise of Christian charity, and the likeliest way I know for relief.. I kept no copy of my foriner letter to you, and so do not remember fully what I have already said concerning this case. But this I have often found with such melancholy people, that the greatest difficulty does not lie in giving them good advice, but in per-, suading them to take it. One thing I think of great importance, which is, that such persons should go on in a steady course of performance of all duties, both of their general and particular calling, without suffering themselves to be diverted from it, by any violence of Satan, or specious pretence of his whatsoever, properly ordering, proportioning, and timing all sorts of duties, duties to God, public, private and secret, and duties to man, relative duties, of business and conversation, family duties, duties, of friendship and good neighbourhood, duly proportioning labour and rest, intentness and relaxation, without suffering one duty to crowd out or intrench upon another. If such personis could be persuaded to this, I think, in this way, they would be best guarded against the devil, and he would soonest be discouraged, and a good state of body would be most likely to be gained, and persons would act most as if they trusted and rested in God, and would be most in the way of his help and blessing.
With regard to what you write concerning immediate re. tions, I have thought of it, and I find I cannot say any tling
your purpose, without drawing out this letter to a very extraordinary length, and I am already got to such a length, that I had need to ask your excuse. I have written enough to tire your patience.
It has indeed been with great difficulty that I have found time to write much. If you knew my extraordinary circumstances, I doubt not, you would excuse my not writing any more.
I acknowledge the subject you mention is very important. Probably if God spares my life, and gives me opportunity, I may write largely upon it. I know not how Providence will dispose of me, I am going to be cast on the wide world, with my large family of ten children. I humbly request your prayers for me under my difficulties and trials.
As to the state of religion in this place and this land, it is at present very sorrowful and dark. But I must, for a more particular account of things, refer you to my letter to Mr. MʻLAURIN, of Glasgow, and Mr. ROBE. So, asking a remembrance in your prayers, I must conclude, by subscribing myself, with much esteem and respect,
Your obliged brother and Servant,
P. S. July 3, 1750. Having had no leisure to finish the preparation of my letters to Scotland before this time, by reason of the extraordinary troubles, hurries and confusions of my unusual circumstances, I can now inform you, that the controversy between me and my people, that I mentioned in the beginning of my letter, has issued in a separation. An ecclesiastical council was called on the affair, who sat here the week before last, who, by a majority of one voice, determined an immediate separation to be necessary; and accordingly my pastoral relation to my people was dissolved on June 22. If I can procure the printed accounts from Boston of the proceedings of the council, I will give order to my friend there to inclose them with this letter, and direct them to you. I desire your prayers, that I may take a suitable notice of the frowns of heaven on me and this people, (between whom was once so great a union,) in bringing to pass such a separation between us; and that these troubles may be sanctified to me, that God would overrule this event for his own glory, (which doubtless many adversaries will rejoice and triumph in,) that God would open a door for my future usefulness, and provide for me and my numerous family, and take a fatherly care of us in our present unsettled uncertain circumstances, being ast on the wide world.
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