Imagens da página
PDF
ePub

justified, and shall glory.All the ends of the earth will hereafter actually look unto him, and be saved. Every knec will bow to him. Every tongue will swear; or, as it is rendered by the Septuagint, and St. Paul, will confess; i. e. the reality, and glory, of his character, and a final devotion to his service. "In JeHovau have I righteousness and strength," will resound wherever there is a heart to fcel, and a tongue to speak. All these blessings he has promised, and promised with an oath. We need not ask whether Toney will be accomplished.

To a mind, solemnly examining this subject, equal. ly astonishing and delightful, po:verfully addressing itself to every expanded view of the intellect, and irresistibly engrossing every exalted attection of the heart, three questions present themselves, which involve every thing, necessary for the direction of our plans, purposes, and efforts. What things are to be done, to complete this glorious end? In what manner are they to be done? and By whom are they to be done? Concerning each of these particulars the following thoughts have presented themselves to my own mind.

In answer to the question, What things are to be done for the completion of this end? I observe,

1. The Views of mankind concerning religious subjects, are to be exlensively changed.

It will not be questioned, that Truth is invariably an object of the Divine complacency; and Errour, or the Divine reprobation. As God rejoices in his works; so it is impossible, that he should not be pleased with truth; which is only a declaration of the state of those works, of his agency in accomplishing them, and of his character, displayed in that agency. Errour, which falsifies all these things, must, with equal evi

[ocr errors]

dence, be odious to him. As little can it be questioned, that truth is the instrument, through which we are sanctified, and made free from the bondage of corruption. Beside the passages of Scripture, to which I have directly alluded there are others, too numerous to be mentioned at the present time, which are equally express, and decisive. The Gospel,” says St. Paul, is the power of Gud unto salvation, to every one that believeth.Of his own will beg at he us,” says St. James, by the Word of truth.Who were born," says St. Peter, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the Word of God.” Hence, to know the truth, to walk in the truth, to be of the truth, to believe in the truth, to receive the love of the truth, and to abide in the truth, are phrases, synonymous with the character of Christians, or good men; or, in other words, with Evangelical virtue: while the contrary phraseology is adopted every where in the Scriptures, to denote, in the same definite manner, the opposite character of sin. Nor can it be doubted, that truth, 'with respect to every subject, is one thing only; like its Author, the same yesterday, to-day, and forever.

But the views, which mankind have hitherto entertained concerning religious subjects, and those of the highest importance, have been endlessly various and discordant. Among the western heathen Philos. ophers, Themistius declares, there were more than two hundred sects, widely differing from each other concerning these subjects. Varro was acquainted with two hundred and eighty-eight different opinions, adopted by these persons concerning the supreme Good; and with three hundred, concerning God. Many volumes have been written, and many more might be written without repetition, for the single purpose of reciting, and explaining, the different apo

prehensions of this class of mankind concerning things, of high moment in the religious system. Among the various schemes, adopted by these men, with respect to each religious subject, it is mathematically certain, that one only can be true. The rest, beyond debate, are mere collections of errours. These errours, also, are in many instances radical: and those, who hold them, cannot, so long as they hold them, be united to the flock, or gathered into the fold, of the Redeemer. Into this flock, into this fold, no man, who is a worshipper of Jupiter, Venus, or Bacchus, can enter. It is impossible for man to make his way to Heaven by the oblation of human sacrifices; or by religious suicide. He, who prostrates himself, before a calf, or a cat, or finds his god in the stock of a tree, cannot, without an entire revolution in his character, be accepted by Him, who hath said, “Confounded be all they that worship graven images.”.

When Pilate proposed to the Jewish rulers and nation to release Christ to them; they said, “Not this man, but Barabbas.When he said again,“What will ye then, that I shall do with him, whom ye call king of the Jeans?” they exclaimed, “Crucify him; crucify him.” When he washed his hands before the multitude, and said, I am innocent of the blood of this just per. son;" they all answered, His blood be on us, and on our children.” To this day, the same spirit is retained by their descendants. They are, still, more hostile to Christ than to any other person, and to Christianity than to any other religion. The very curse, which their ancestors invoked, appears still to rest upon them; and their hardness of heart is, according to the prediction of their great prophet, a bye-word, and an astonishment, to every nation, whither they have becn driven.

your sins.

The glorious person, who was so furiously persecuted by this unhappy nation, declared to his persecutors, If ye believe not, that I am he; ye shall die in

" It cannot be doubted, that this declara-, tion extends its terrible efficacy, with equal certainty, to every subsequent generation. The Jews, therefore, can never be brought into the fold of Christ, until they renounce their unbelief, and essentially change their views concerning the Saviour of men.

T'he Koran so far as it is not copied from the Jew. ish and Christian Scriptures, is a mass of falsehoods; and its author was by way of eminence the false prophet; the most successful, and the most mischievous, impostor, who has ever attempted to pervert the faith of mankind. Wheneyer men are turned unto fables, they turn away their ears from the truth. Even the sound doctrines, which their leader derived from the Bible. and pronounced to be the word of God, Mohummedans appear, from the beginning, to have universally disregarded, and forgotten; and to have confined their faith to the miserable inventions of the deceiver. Christ, acknowledged by Mohammed to be a propbet from God, they have entirely disbelieved His doctrines they have rejected from their creed, and his precepts from their moral code. Their faith, hejt. and obedience, they have restricted to the instructions, promiscs, and precepts, of the Koran. This, indeed, is far from being strange. The iron and the clay, although they may seem to be parts of the same image, can never be united. The doctrines of Mohammed are only hostile to those of Christ. He, who receives the one class, will, therefore, certainly reject the other.

Besides, a judicial sentence has gone out against the impostor, and his followers. If any man,says St. Jo!ır, shall add unto these things;

Gou shall add unto him the plagues, that are written in this book: and, if any man shall take aroly from The words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take ww-uy his part out of the book of liyo.A change therefore, a mighty change, must be made is the views of the Mohammedan world, before its millions can be numbered in the flock of Christ.

of the Antichristian dactices it cannot be neces. sary to make a very particular inention at the present time. The idolatry of the Romish church is even more reprehensible than that of the heathen; and is in. fccted with all the pollution, attributed in the Scriptures to that of the Jews. The idols are, here, set up in the temple of God; at the foot of the mercy seat; imme diately before the Urim and Thummim; and in the very skirts of the Shechinah. The idolatry is practised beneath the cross; and openly insults the agonies of the Saviour. The endless train of external services also, in which the whole of Religion is placed; the rain oblations; the incense, that is an abomination; the neco moons, and sabbaths; the calling of assemblies, which God cannot away with; the solemn meeting, which is iniquity; the appointed feasts, which his soul halet!, and is weary to bear; the absolutions, and indulgencics, in which the hierarchy exults its throne abore the stars of God, and says, “I will be like the Most High;" force upon us an irresistible conviction, that these Augean impurities must all be wasıed away, before the Romish world can become clean in the sight of the Creator.

Nor is it necessary to dwell, here, upon the vain and deceitful philosophy of Infidels, which is after the traditions of men, and the rudiments of this rcorld; and not after Christ. The Atheist must believe, that there is a God; the Sceptic, that there is truth, of ini..

« AnteriorContinuar »