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and the Record Neuspuper. cabinet; nor are we aware that any one of them reads our publication. What, then, is meant by our wishing to maintain our character with them; especially in reference to the violation of the Lord's-day, concerning which the conductors of the Record know that no publication has for thirty years written more, or more strongly, than we have done? In the very Number of our work which they traduce (see p. 436), as well as in other places innumerable, this precise point of the violation of the Lord's-day by our cabinet ministers and other public men was the subject of our earnest remonstrances and reprobation. We do not offer these remarks for the consideration of the conductors of the Record, whose various attacks upon us, all written in the spirit of the above, we willingly leave to their own refutation, not wishing to contend with writers whose practiee is to fling abroad firebrands, arrows, and death ; but for the sake of some truly Christian men, who, reading such passages, might suppose that there was at least some shadow of foundation for them; that a newspaper, lauded for its peculiar piety, and honesty, and its zeal against Neologists and Socinians, could not have coined such accusations just to serve a purpose, without any reality, or even semblance of truth. Yet so it is; and so the Record knows it to be. The meaning of the innuendoes 'in the above paragraph would seem to be, that for some unaccountable, mean, sinister, self-interested reason, the Christian Observer truckles to all that is vicious and immoral; that it is the friend and abettor of Unitarians, sensualists, Papistical demagogues, and Sabbath-breakers ;-charges so absurd, that we should be ashamed to waste a line in their refutation. If the Record can either write himself up, or us down, he is very welcome to do so; but, for his own sake, let him remember that persons professing to be Christians should not pen fabrications, even in a supposed worthy cause. The Record might easily have known, that, so far from evincing a spirit of self-interested time-serving, it has been our lot to sacrifice much, in more ways than one, to honest conviction, be that conviction right or wrong. Had favour rather than truth been our object, we could easily have found, or made, a party, as some other publications have done; and we certainly should not have taken, on so many questions, a side so unpopular in the aforesaid religious world as that which we have advocated. Not that we regret it; quite the contrary: nor should we care to allude to the subject, had we not been forced to do so by the absurd charges above quoted. Their absurdity is the best answer to their dishonesty: we say dishonesty, because it is clear that the writer could not believe his own assertion. If he says that he did, that he seriously thought we had inserted our remarks upon Captain Gordon and the Bible Society “lest our fair fame should be tarnished with Mr. Long Pole Wellesley,” we can only say, that, after what he has already suffered himself to write, such an assertion would not startle us; any more than his saying that “the Christian Observer approves of religious members of parliament being silent where religion is concerned ;” when, often and often, we have expressed in very strong terms the contrary sentiment. We leave the writer to settle these matters with his own conscience. He seems to think that between himself and his fellow Protestants, as he asserts in reference to the conversion of Roman Catholics, “the more exasperation the better.” Our own view is so different, that we shall drop the subject; for sure we are that the wrath of man
worketh not the righteousness of God. With regard to Captain Gordon, we assure him, with all sincerity, that our words,
serious as they were, were spoken in sorrow, not in anger. We did, and we do, lament those particulars in his public proceedings to which we adverted. Let him ask himself whether our remarks were without foundation. He says, indeed, that our observations were “unprovoked, wanton, and insidious.” Now, that they were not "insidious ” even the Record will prove; for it admits, while it charges us with saying keen things smoothly, that here at least there is no reason for such a charge, our objections being strongly expressed, and without in. nuendo. Neither was it " wanton “ unprovoked;" for our object was simply truth and charity; and our observations arose out of no private or gratuitous topic, but from the passing discussion of the events of the day. We should not have admitted provocation as a Christian apology; it would have been the very reason why we should have wished to restrain our pen : Captain Gordon certainly had not“ provoked” us, nor had we any wish to “ provoke” or injure him; our observations related to public men and public matters. On the duty of withdrawing the aid afforded to Maynooth college we heartily agreed with him: we have urged this duty year after year, and especially at and after the passing of the measure called Catholic Emancipation ; and, we may add, have privately as well as publicly pressed it upon the attention of several Members of Parliament. Thus far, then, we agreed with Captain Gordon. Nor on the subject of the Bible Society did we presume to blame him for holding a contrary opinion to our own; several excellent friends of ours do so, yet without the least semblance of “provocation.” It was upon the spirit displayed, and not upon the opinion, right or wrong, that we animadverted. Captain Gordon says that he gave no provocation.
We fear that it would be easy to prove that he gave much: it were enough had he written but one such assertion as the following, in the Record, in reference to the public meeting of the Bible Society :-“ I never,” says he,“ met with any thing which depicted more meaningly and graphically to my mind the characteristics of actual possession, than the feelings and expressions that were excited by every reference to the authority of that blessed book, the Bible :" whereas Mr. B. Noel, his own seconder, admits that the meeting, though vehement, " was generally good tempered.” In Parliament the same scene constantly occurs: he is one day called to order by the House; another, by the Speaker : he says to one member (we quote from the Record itself), "J Aing back the charge of intolerance with contempt upon its author" (Christian contempt, and retaliation!); of another, His sneers shall not pass without the indignant rebuke they deserve: he may prefer the intelligible, significant grimace, &c., but such conduct is unparliamentary, and not adapted to the manners or society of gentlemen : ” and then, after all this indignation, rebuke, and charges of grimace, and standing up for parliamentary and gentlemanly conduct, and being called to order by the Speaker, he is constrained to apologize to the individual, as having imputed the whole of the charge without foundation ;--and then again telling the House that “ he stands there as a Christian and a gentleman, repelling taunts,” &c., as if a man's being a Christian and a gentleman were not best discovered by a course of conduct that does not require frequent displays of egotism or self-vindication. We wrote strongly, because we honestly thought that Captain Gordon, in pursuing such a course, while he is set forth by the Record itself as "expressing the sentiments of a larger and more respectable and influential part of the religious public than any other individual,” is doing much harm, where the providence of God had enabled him to do much good. If the above is the way in which religion is to be vindicated, we are only sorry that “ Mr. O'Connell, Mr. Smith, and Mr. Wellesley," have not happier specimens of its practical influence on the temper. It is easy to rail at Papists and Socinians, at High Church and Dissenters; but if “ the respectable and influential part of the religious public” have nothing better to shew, as proofs of their study of the meekness and humility of Christ, neither will the glory of God nor the welfare of mankind be promoted by their efforts. Our duty, not our inclination, has forced upon us these painful remarks.
SUPPLEMENT TO RELIGIOUS INTELLIGENCE.
BRITISH AND FOREIGN BIBLE SOCIETY. We append with much satisfaction the Monthly Extracts of this Society; and we wish for no better auswer to its opposers than is conveyed in these interesting statements. To the Sackville-Street Committee we repeat, Your regulation is miserably time-serving and scanty; and yet, scanty as it is, you do not propose honestly to act upon it. It is time-serving and scanty: you are willing, you say, to adnit among you unbelievers of every class but one : you are ready to maintain fellowship (if, as you affirm, juxta-position in the Bible Society is fellowship) with Antinomians, drunkards, Sabbathbreakers, duellists, and profligates of every other name; with rejectors of the righteousness which is of faith ; nay, with idolaters, gross idolaters; and yet you profess that yours is to be a pure society. Captain Gordon one day presents a petition shewing that Mr. O'Connell and Mr. Shiel are gross idolaters, and yet is ready the next to admit them by his rules as committee men in the proposed Sackville-Street Society. He rejects only one class of heretics: nay, these are not rejected; for no questions are to be asked on receiving their money, nor is any regulation framed, or court of inquisition appointed, by which they may be denied office it they choose to seek it. There is in all this a want of plain, straight-forward Christian honesty: it is a time-serving truckling to carnal expediency. If you have any test, propose at least one that shall exclude idolaters from your communion; and then go on to shut out all other persons whose life or doctrines you disapprove. This will be manly and Christian; but if you are deterred by difficulties, if you knowingly admit any one to membership whom you do not believe to be a true servant of Christ, your own principles condemn you. Those who urge no test in the distribution of the word of God but a man's willingness to assist in distributing it, are consistent and conscientious: but to profess to make a Christian enclosure, and then, for expediency sake, to admit all sorts of corruptions within it-to embrace Pharisees, Antinomians, Swedenborgians, idolaters-and then to call yourselves a Christian society, just because you have a mock rule against Socinians, is a cowardly worldly policy, which can satisfy no seriously reflecting mind. Not so acted our Saviour, or his Apostles, or any branch, ancient or modern, of the church of Christ. Is this your faithfulness to your Lord; to exclude only one class of men as not Christians, and thus virtually to tell the wicked and unbelieving of all other classes who join you that they are Christians ? The principle is unsound to the core : and our only wonder is how such a man as the excellent and highly-talented clergyman who seconded it-a man whom we esteem most affectionately for his zeal, and piety, and diligent pastoral labours, and amiable and ingenuous spiritshould for one moment have been led away by it. The terin Christian meaus either far more or far less than the objection to the Bible Society's rule would make it. If the Sackville-Street Committee coustrue it spiritually, why do they admit profligates and idolaters to their fellowship? if only in the lax sense in which it is popularly applied to all persons professing to be baptized into the faith of Christ, why reject one class of such persons ?. But, in either case, let them be faithful to their principles: their present rule, we repeat, is short-sighted, calculating, and trimıning:
ANTI-SLAVERY SOCIETY. We append Nos. 85 and 86 of the Reporter, containing a fresh series of official disclosures of the habitual injustice and cruelty exercised towards the slaves. No. 87, which we are obliged to postpone till next month, is still more black in atrocities. How long, O Lord ! how long !
SOCIETY FOR THE CONVERSION OF THE JEWS. We affix the Society's Report alluded to last month; and heartily do we pray, both that Israel may be saved, and that the labours of this Institution may be abundantly prospered towards that blessed consummation.
THE subject of private meetings Our blessed Saviour was particular for
prayer and religious confer- in forewarning his disciples that such ence has of late undergone much dis- abuse, and to a very great extent, cussion among the Episcopalians of would be made of his Gospel; and the United States, and many doubts most lamentably, in all ages of his have been expressed as to whether church, have his predictions been the evils which may attach to them verified. And we know well what do not preponderate over the be- use the enemies of Christianity have nefits; in proof of which Bishop made of its abuses to prejudice the Hobart gave extensive circulation world against it. The disciples of to the opinions of the late Mr. Christ have much warning, and Scott, and other English clergymen much reason, to be cautious how they of known zeal, wisdom, and piety. use or countenance such fallacious On the other hand, they have reasoning. It is the grand art of not wanted powerful defenders, Satan to frustrate every thing good among whom we enumerate with by perverting it to evil effects. It much respect the Right Reverend is not indicative of a good cause Dr. Griswold, Bishop of the Eastern that the opposers of these meetings Diocese. The question is at this should so much urge the stale argumoment of peculiar interest and im- ment of their abuse; and it is not a portance among ourselves ; and we little encouraging to those who attherefore, with much pleasure, lay tend the meetings, that, with the disbefore our readers the following position which has been manifested remarks upon it, by this much to disparage them, and after searchrespected and venerable prelate. ing over the whole face of the earth
to discover their ill effects, so little has been found. And if the argument from this little is to be of
weight, how are we to defend other The principal objection against usages in the church? What, for the meetings in question, is their instance, might not be said of the evil tendency. If no more were celebration of our Lord's nativity! meant by this objection than that What revellings, intemperance, and they are sometimes abused and made dissipation, to the great disgrace of the occasion of various evils, it would the Christian name, have been, and be unnecessary to offer any thing in still are, in most parts of the Christheir defence; for what religion, or tian world, the effects of observing what part of religion, can be named, that festival! It must, for hundreds which has not been so abused and of years, and in thousands of places, made productive of evil effects ? have been in God's sight as great CHRIST. OBSERV. No. 357.
BISHOP GRISWOLD ON PRAYER MEET
INGS AND REVIVALS.
an abomination as what in such ascertain what manner of meetings strong language he condemns in the will be useful in their parishes. If first chapter of the prophet Isaiah. in any instance, or any place, these And yet truly devout Christians, meetings are found to be more prowho feel pious gratitude and holy ductive of ill effects than good, it is joy in contemplating the “unspeak- in the power of the presiding miable gift” of a Divine Saviour, are nister to suppress them. strengthened and edified by cele- It is indeed not a little remark. brating his birth : and they would able, and shews the paucity of evideem it very unjust and unchristian dence against these meetings, that to be censured and condemned for Mr. Scott's testimony should be so observing Christmas, because even often brought forward in various millions make it an occasion to quarters of the world, from India to frolic and carnal festivity.
the United States, and by those, In denouncing these meetings in too, who, on any point at variance our churches, it is usual to urge with their own opinion, would not, their effect, and the disorders they it is believed, deem his authority of produce, among other denominations much weight. The ministry of the of our Christian brethren. But this Rev. Devereaux Jarratt has freis no just criterion : their notions quently been exhibited or alluded of doctrine, order, and discipline, to, apparently for the purpose of and their standard of zeal and reli- shewing the ill effects of prayer gious feeling, differ from ours. Com- meetings, and of labouring " out of paratively speaking, their religious season to save the souls of men. systems tend more to ardour and Of the history of his labours the enthusiasm ; ours to moderation and writer of this article has but little formality. What we deem irregu- knowledge: so far as that little will larity and confusion, many of them authorize him to judge, few have been conceive to be the life and power more faithful, or more successful in of religion.
the ministry, than Mr. Jarratt. He Nor is it necessary in the present appears to have been instrumental question, nor likely to bring it to in turning many to righteousness. a fair issue, to urge the opinions of If large numbers of those who had men and the practice of Christians been awakened by his preaching in other countries. Facts and cir- afterwards ceased to walk with him, cumstances at such a distance can- the same was true of our blessed not be so accurately ascertained; Saviour. And of those who left the besides, what should also be con- communion of Mr. Jarratt's church, sidered, the habits and general many, probably the greater part, information of the people, and the did not renounce Christianity, but state of religion, are different in continued faithful disciples of Christ foreign countries from what they till their death : and, what is most are in this. It is not believed that to the purpose, a very large numthe meetings which Mr. Scott and ber of communicants, several hunother English clergymen have found dreds it is said, continued stedfast to be productive of evils, are the with their pastor till his death. same as ours here. And were they Were his clerical brethren of the similar, they have been in our coun- same time, and the same State, who try so extensively introduced, and disapproved of prayer meetings, more of so long continuance, that, from successful in the ministry than he ? our own experience and observation, On questions of this nature, we we may form a far more correct judg- might expect that the opinion of ment of their expediency and utility. “the pious Mr. Nelson ” would have Our clergy, it is believed, have much more weight with Churchmen no need of sending to England to than that of Mr. Scott. Speaking of such voluntary meetings in Eng- to revive the true spirit of Christianland, he says, in the preface of his ity. The laymen who attend the much-esteemed work on the Festivals meetings do pay that deference they and Fasts of the Church, “Upon profess (and ought to pay) to their this occasion I think it a great piece parochial ministers, and are ready of justice to acknowledge and com- to be governed by their directions. mend the pious and devout practices However they may desire such meetof the Religious Societies, who, in ings, the people presume not to conthis point, as well as in many others, tinue them, in case they have not the distinguish themselves by their regu- consent at least of their respective lar conformity and obedience to the pastors.
or settled laws of the Church. While they ministers, are, by the authority of pay that deference they profess to the Church, appointed the rulers of their parochial ministers, and are their respective parishes; and to ready to be governed by their direc- them the people should immediately tions, and are willing to submit their look as their spiritual guides. If the rules and orders to the judgment of pastors err, they are amenable to the the reverend clergy, I cannot appre- higher authorities. While the people hend but that they must be very pay this deference to their spiritual serviceable to the interest of religion, guides, it is highly unjust, and “inand may contribute very much to consistent with the principles of revive that true spirit of Christian- Churchmen,” to censure them for ity, which was so much the glory of attending the meetings. None, we the primitive times. And I see no repeat, are more respectful or more reason why men may not meet and affectionate to their pastors than they; consult together to improve one none are more ready to strengthen another in Christian knowledge, and the hands and to profit by the minisby mutual advice take measures how trations of the clergy. Generally best to further their own salvation, speaking, none are more constant as well as that of their neighbours, at the Lord's table, and in family when the same liberty is taken for prayer. Indeed, there are few besides the improvement of trade, and for pious communicants who constantly carrying on the pleasures and diver- attend the meetings. If on any ocsions of life. And for those objec- casion, whether on the Lord's-day, tions which are urged against these or at other seasons, the church be societies from some Canons of the opened for public worship, these of Church, they seem to be founded all Christians are (still generally upon a misunderstanding of the speaking) most sure to be present. sense of those Canons.” Such is And dare we accuse, and judge, and the judgment of that charity which condemn such people ? Dare we hold our Church, more than any other them up to the abhorrence of Chrischurch on earth, inculcates; and such tians and the scorn of the world, as the language of those who most sin- the enemies of the Church and of cerely and impartially seek its peace true religion? Is it not more agreeand vital prosperity. The meetings able to the Spirit of Christ to say, in Rhode Island, which have been for their comfort, "Blessed are ye so severely censured, remarkably when men shall revile you,
peragree with what Mr. Nelson here secute you, and say all manner of so cordially commends, and thinks it evil against you falsely, for my a great piece of justice to commend: sake? and here they have, in all human It is indeed affirmed that experiappearance, actually proved, what ence has shewn that the meetings in he supposes they must be, very ser- question have an evil tendency. But viceable to the interests of religion; it must be general experience which and have, we humbly hope, contri- can prove any thing to this purpose. buted something, if not very much, A few instances, though found both