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there is a display of his power, there is a display of his holiness, there is a display of his justice, thereis a display of his wisdom, there is a display of his faithfulness and truth ;and we are called upon to contemplate the entire exhibition of each and all. But it is the display and development of his LOVE that ought to excite our warmest feelings and raise our highest joy.

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What an infinitude of meaning is there in that one single passage upon this subject, by John, "GOD IS LOVE!" Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that he loved us, and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins." If you can consider, for a single moment, the situation in which our race stood by transgression, and view the redemption in all the varied blessings which by the cross has been secured to us, you may then wonder at the majesty of the mercy he constructed and displayed. The cross seems to gather to itself, as a centre, all that can belong to the rays of divine love, from one eternity to another. Herein is love, incomprehensible to immortal minds! Herein is love, which animated the counsels of God before the foundation of the world! Herein is love, which, in the early ages of the world, was invisible; which patriarchs anticipated, and respecting which prophets sang! Herein is love, which lights up the sepulchre of death, which opens the 'gates of glory, which attracts the admiration of the redeemed, which raises the songs of angels and the blessed before the throne, and which will remain to be the source of all their bliss, and perfection, and pleasure, throughout the changes of time! "God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life."

2. It furnishes the ground of proper confidence for the hopes of the penitent sinner. If this doctrine be true which I have stated to you thus simply and distinctly, with regard to the nature of the Redeemer's offering, and which is secured by the splendour and perfection of his character, there can be no reason whatever to doubt with regard to those who look unto him, but that they shall be perfectly and eternally saved. Look back to the encouragements of former days, when the justice of God seemed to advance to draw the sword of his

vengeance, with his red right arm to smite you; look back to that awful period when JEHOVAH appeared to all for infliction and woe. While there is the existence of the cross of Christ, there is no entrance for despair. Let your sins be as accumulated as they will, let them extend over a territory as vast as they will, let them involve acts of impiety as great as they will, still redemption is not impossible. If any man doubt the Redeemer's ability, "he is able to save unto the uttermost all that come unto God by him." If any man thirst let him come unto Christ. "Let him that is athirst come and whosoever will let him take the water of life freely." It was from his cross that he bore away the legal felon, and placed him before the throne of JEHOVAH, as a trophy of his mercy, as a sample and pattern of those who should believe in after ages. Be it your confidence then, to rejoice and joy in him! "Believe on the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, and you shall be saved." The cross of Christ furnishes

3. Atopic of ministerial promise, and success. Involving as this great theme does, those various principles which are essential to our happiness, both for time and eternity, it must become those who are sent forth to minister to their feilow men, to place this subject clearly before their eyes. You will observe, that the apostle in this and the following chapter, views the term, the cross of Christ, as involving the whole theme of his ministry. He says, in the verse before us, "Christ sent me not to baptize, but to preach the gospel; not with the wisdom of words." You will remark, that the preaching of the gospel is equivalent to the preaching of the cross, "Lest the cross of Christ should be made of non-effect; for the preaching of the cross, is to them that perish, foolishness; but unto us which are saved, it is the power of God." Again, look to the 22nd verse, “For the Jews require a sign, and the Greeks seek after wisdom; but we preach Christ crucified, unto the Jews a stumbling block, and unto the Greeks foolishness; but unto them which are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God, and the wisdom of God." Again, in the commencement of the next chapter, "And I, brethren, when I came unto you, came not with

excellency of speech or of wisdom, declaring unto you the testimony of God; for I determined not to know any thing among you, save Jesus Christ and him crucified." And so brethren, must the matter still remain. And while Jews may laugh, and infidels may blaspheme, it becomes those who are sent out as the ambassadors of Christ in the ministry of reconciiliation, still to lift up their hand, and to exclaim to the sinner, "Behold the Lamb of God which taketh away the sins of the world!" And for my own part, rather than I would take away that topic of my ministry, I would take up the imprecation of Job, and exclaim, "Yea, let the day perish wherein I was born."

You will observe, that the success of the ministry of the gospel, will always depend, humanly speaking, upon the fervour with which the Divinity of Christ is presented to the mind of man, That was an excellent reply which was made by Mr. Cadogan to a young minister, who stated to him the difficulties and anxieties he felt with regard to the success of his ministry: "Young man, you have but one thing to do, and that is, to place before you the CROSS OF CHRIST, and the promise," "And I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw all men unto me." And Christ has been lifted up from the earth. He now reigns in glory. He looks down from his lofty pinnacle on those beneath him, and he exclaims, "I will overturn, overturn, overturn it, and it shall be no more, until he come whose right it is." "He must reign until he hath put all enemies under his feet." By sending those heralds, who are inspired by his grace and pointed by his wisdom, the mighty gospel will fly to the uttermost parts of the earth, being preached to all the nations of mankind, till there shall be heard the sounding of the seventh angel's trumpet in the vast expanse of heaven, "The kingdoms of this world are become the kingdoms of our God and of his Christ, and he shall reign for ever and ever." The cross of Christ furnishes,


4 The source of joy to the believer, both in time and in eternity. I would ask any one who holds the doctrine of the atonement of Christ, whether there is not a kind of charm in the


name-the cross of Christ? you tell the amount of that pleasure which first vibrated in melody through your hearts, when the cross of Christ removed your transgressions, and when you saw clearly the salvation you obtained through the Redeemer's sacrifice and blood; and when through the power of the Holy Ghost, you were able to take up the language of the apostle, and exclaim, "whom having not seen we love; in whom, though now we see him not, yet believing, we rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory; receiving the end of our faith, even the salvation of our souls?" And what is it that excites the joy of the redeemed spirits already with God, who have gone before us, and entered into that place where Jesus is stationed upon a seat of almighty vision, looking over the universe of God, and where they behold the grandeur of his uncreated glory, and see in almost an unclouded view, the essence of that great and mighty Being, who once tabernacled upon earth? While you listen to the burden of their song, see if it does not arise from the cross of Christ, "For thou wast slain, and hast redeemed us to God by thy blood, out of every kindred, and tongue, and people and nation." "Worthy is the Lamb that was slain to receive power, and riches, and wisdom, and strength, and honour, and glory, and blessing!" And so it will be; the cross of Christ will become the theme of joy and praise

"While life, and thought, and being last, And immortality endures."

Let me now request you not to neglect the cross.


Is there one in this building to-day, by whom the cross of Christ, and the means of redemption by his sacrifice, have been neglected in scorn? there one to whom the Redeemer has said, “All ye that pass by, come see if there ever was sorrow like unto my sorrow," and to whom the request has been made in vain? You are living in impenitence and transgression! You are refusing to drink the water, and to eat the bread of eternal life! You are seeking death in the error of your ways! Is there in Christ no comeliness, no beauty, that you should

OF CHRIST Our Lord. When the trum-
pet of the archangel's thunder shall
rouse the nations out of sleep, and
shall place them all before the bar of
God, we shall point, before the throne,
as the ground of our non-condemnation
and rejection, to THE CROSS OF CHRIST.
When the nations of mankind have
deen dismissed to their eternal destiny,
and when the gates of heaven and hell
shall be closed for ever, we will make
it the ground of our rejoicing, amidst
the regions of the blest, that we have
been redeemed by THE
CHRIST Our Lord.


desire him? Ponder this simple question, "How shall we escape if we neglect so great salvation?" Know ye not, that by neglecting the cross, you are stabbing the very vitals of your comfort in a future period of your existence ? Know ye not that ye are sending away by the evil magic of your depravity, even ministering spirits of mercy, that might hover over the hour of your departure to another and an unseen world? Know ye not that ye are shutting against yourselves the gates of heaven, and opening wide the yawning world of darkness and despair? That you are rushing down to the depths of perdition, where you shall ask in vain for a drop of water to cool your thirsting and tormented tongue? O sinner, rush not upon the "thick bosses of Jehovah's buckler." "Turn ye, turn ye, why will ye die?" Behold the atone-pared for the crown "FOR IF WE ment of Christ spread before you! SUFFER WITH CHRIST, WE SHALL ALSO Now the statement is laid before you, come poor guilty sinners! O believe on the name of the only Lord and Saviour; "For he that believeth shall be SAVED, but he that believeth not shall be DAMNED."


Place your hopes of salvation on the glory of the cross. Now, my Christian brethren, it is to the cross that we summon you, that you may gather around it. Now you are in a place where it is presented to you! Here is the sanctuary of Jehovah! Here are saints! Here is presented to you the necessity of the gospel! Here is the altar, and here is the vow; and let your vow, be the vow of the apostle of the Gentiles, "Yea doubtless, I will count all things but loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord." O yes,

"When I survey the wondrous cross
On which the prince of glory died,
My richest gain I count but loss,
And pour contempt on all my pride."

Behold it! while the worldling may neglect and the infidel may defy, we will hold it as our glory, that we have "The cross of Christ" our Lord. When the king of terrors shall place his cold hand upon our heart, and close our dim eyes in the moment of dissolution, and our spirit shall depart into immortality, looking for the dawning of its approach, and the splendour of its joy, we will exult in THE CROSS

O may the Spirit of the Redeemer, who is sent down by the virtue of his sufferings, to those that ask him in sincerity and in truth, be shed down upon you now; that by being brought to the cross of Christ, you may be pre




"And they caused them to understand the reading."


We apprehend it is not at all necessary that we should make any laboured effort to convince our readers, that in order to a right apprehension of a very considerable portion of the sacred writings, much previous knowledge is required. This now seems to be pretty generally admitted, and hence the great multiplication and rapid sale of books on Scripture interpretation and antiquities which have been witnessed within the last few years. No person of ordinary intelligence will now be found to deny that the enactments of the law, the declarations of the prophets, the discourses of the Saviour, and the letters of the apostles, were all called forth by the immediate circumstances of the persons to whom they were addressed; and that, therefore, some acquaintance with those circumstances is at least desirable, if not indispensably necessary, to enter into their full spirit and meaning. It will be evident to all,

whole force and beauty, and
the most important meaning, of certain
parts of scripture, can only be perceived
by a familiar Knowledge of the things
to which the writers allude, it will be
our object to furnish this, in some de-
gree, and to point out to those who
may be desirous to prosecute the sub-
ject further, the best and most accessi-
ble sources of information. In aiming
to secure this object, we purpose to
avoid every thing of an abstruse cha-
racter, and to employ plain and fami-
liar language;-to address plain truth
to plain men, in terms which may be
universally understood.

upon a moment's reflection, that every writer must give his readers credit for some of that information which is acquired by ordinary experience, without which, it is not easy to concieve where his explanation could begin or end; and it is equally obvious, that where this information is wanting, many parts of his discourse must be very obscure, if not wholly unintelligible. None but an enthusiast, therefore, will deny, that there are many difficulties in the sacred writings: they are inseperable from a work referring to scenes and times whose character is altogether different from those with which we are acquainted. And in the scriptures, Our readers will pardon us, if, bethese difficulties are increased by the fore we proceed to lay before them the nature of the narrative or subject in plan by which it is designed to prosewhich they occur. The ancient records cute our purpose, we express our soof religion have frequently a meaning | licitude that they should possess corand reference which belong to some rect views of the character and claims peculiarity in the system they were of that Holy book to which we design written to develope; and it is these directing their attention, and of the points which are often illustrated by disposition of mind and integrity of the allusions to objects and circum-purpose which should be uniformly stances present to the writers of the cherished when its pages are unfolded. several books. Thus we have not only It is no human production; but the to search for the frequently hidden and Word of God: it is a revelation of peculiar meaning of scripture phrase- mercy to the guilty; an overture of ology, but to examine with the most peace to rebels; a proclamation of free careful attention the sources themselves, and sovereign grace to those who are unfrom which its metaphors and illus-godly, without hope, without strength, trations have been drawn.

Let it not be supposed, however, that the difficulties of which we speak, are altogether insuperable. Many of them may be removed entirely, and most of them partially, by the aids which the learning and industry of biblical critics have furnished. A knowledge of local circumstances, manners, and customs, will, as already suggested, adjust many apparent discrepancies, and shew the reasonableness and wisdom of many commands and prohibitions; while an acquaintance with local scenery and other natural phenomena, will illustrate the phraseology and metaphors employed.

In support of both the positions which we have here assumed, numerous passages in the sacred writings might be adduced, were it thought to be necessary; but as ample opportunities will be given for this during the course of these essays, it will be deferred for the present. Deeply convinced, as we are, (and we doubt not that most of our readers are equally so) that the

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dead in trespasses and sins, and who, but for this exhibition of mercy, must have remained without hope, and have perished everlastingly. Is it not obvious, therefore, that such a book demands from us the deepest attention, and the most profound veneration? Never must we forget the debt of gratitude which such a revelation has created, nor the high and paramount claims which it has upon our regards. With deep humility, arising from a consciousness of our moral degradation and exposure to punishment, must be conjoined devout and fervent prayer for divine illumination, and a firmness of resolve to prostrate our understandings and wills before these living oracles of truth; and when we have thus ascertained, in any one respect, the will of God, we must hasten, in his strength, to do it. It can only be by cherishing such sentiments as these, that the Scriptures will become "the savour of life unto life," or "the power of God to salvation."

It only remains that we should briefly

state the method which we intend to adopt, in treating of the various subjects which are embraced in the plan that has now been proposed.

In furnishing an introduction to the reading and study of the English Bible, it seems obviously necessary that we should first give some account of this. The history and character of the text primarily demands our attention; and next, the aids which are required for its interpretation. This, then, will be our first business. We shall endeavour, in two or three papers, to give an account of the English translation of the Bible, with a view to furnish the means of forming an estimate of its character; we shall then proceed to notice its divisions into chapters and verses, the headings of the chapters, the chronology, and such other matters as require explanation. Having thus satisfied our readers on the character of the version which they have in their hands, we shall next endeavour to provide them with the means of understanding its contents, by a brief, but we hope, lucid exposition of the leading principles of biblical interpretation. During the progress of this branch of our discussion, we shall be led to perceive the extent of archæological information which is requisite to constitute a good interpreter of scripture, which suggests the propriety of following it by a descriptive sketch of biblical antiquities.

Such, then, is a brief outline of our plan; but as our sole object is the edification of our readers, we shall gladly avail ourselves of any suggestions which they may feel disposed to make for its improvement.

religious liberty.-Claiming for themselves a right to worship God according to the dictates of conscience, they have ever been willing to extend that precious right to others. And to their honour be it spoken, when they attained power they did not make use of it to crush their enemies, but to frame the godliest plans of liberty, which ever the wisdom of man devised. The flame which was lighted up by them during the time of the Commonwealth, has ever since continued burning, and now shines in England with resplendent lustre. Their congregations are amongst the largest, the most liberal, and the most zealous in the promotion of every good work. Their ministers are distinguished by the depth and variety of their learning, and are esteemed and loved as the devoted and successful ambassadors of the Most High.

In the number of these, few are more entitled to public admiration and gratitude than the Rev. William Orme, of Camberwell. He has silently won himself a reputation which will last while merit is honoured, or learning appreciated. But a few years since he was stationed at Perth, a small town in Scotland, and scarcely known beyond the neighbourhood of that place. Now, however, he has obtained distinction both in the literary and religious world, by the variety of his labours, and the excellency of his pulpit talents.

The appearance of Mr. Orme in the pulpit is pleasing, and commands respect. His figure is good, and his voice, although neither strong nor harmonious, is yet pleasing; while the accent of his native land often gives it a charm which it would not otherwise possess. His forehead is capacious, and denotes the

THE GALLERY OF PORTRAITS. intellectual riches within; while the

NO. I.


"An orator, who like Demosthenes, appeals to the head rather than the heart-who resorts to argument, not to sophistry-who has no sounding words unsupported by strong conceptions--who had rather convince without

solemnity of his aspect and the propriety of his action, tend to impress his hearers with a conviction, that "he is honest in the sacred cause."

The sermons of Mr. Orme are distinguished by their scriptural fidelity. His divisions are well arranged, and most ably and impressively reasoned. His introduction is generally short, sim

persuading, than persuade without convinc-ple, but striking; and his perorations


THE Independents, as a body, have always ranked high amongst the most ardent and useful friends to civil and

contain such reflections as naturally arise from a consideration of the previous part of the subject.

There is scarcely any part of Christian duty, experience, or doctrine, which

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