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consequent upon them, they suffered deeply, in an age when religious liberty was claimed by all, but was given by few or none who came into the possession of power. Read the relations of the patient sufferings for the cause of truth, and the testimony of Jesus, of those who have gone before you ;"* and faithfully bear your testimony even in those things that you may be ready to call little. Let not the singularity which a conduct consistent with your principles may produce, discourage you from a faithful adherence to them; but submit to bear that cross, which will crucify you to the world, and the world to you, and redeem you from the various corruptions with which it abounds. The principles and practices of our society are now, in general, so respectfully treated, that the temptation to desert them is much lessened. Prize your privileges; consider how differently our fore-fathers were circumstanced; and let this consideration excite in your minds, increasing faithfulness and dedication to all parts of your religious duty. Follow the example of our blessed Redeemer; remember the reproaches which He endured; and be willing to take up the cross and despise the shame; then you may become partakers of that crown of righteousness, which is the re· ward of all who have fought the good fight, and
* The Author wishes to turn the attention of the youth to the sufferings of the primitive Christians, and of the early reformers from popery, as well as those of our own society.
kept the faith, and who love his appearance.
Before I conclude this address, I wish a little further to open the subject of Christian redemption, so far at least as to turn your attention to that work, which the depraved state of human nature renders universally necessary, and in which our Lord thus instructed a ruler among the Jews:“ Excepta man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God."* Whatever our religious profession, whatever our outward appearance and demeanour may be ; all will fail to procure us Divine favour and acceptance, if the heart is not renewed after the image of Him that created us. “ Marvel not that I said unto thee, ye must be born again.”+ This was the language in which our Saviour repeatedly inculcated this doctrine to Nicodemus; and O! my dear young friends! neither marvel at it nor withdraw from it. Examine the state of your own hearts, and the occasion for it will soon be seen and felt. Dwell, therefore, I entreat you, under those Divine convictions and influences, by which “the washing of regeneration and renewing of the Holy Ghost”* are experienced. The work is generally slow and gradual; therefore be not discouraged, if you cannot always perceive its progress; but, as you abide patiently under a right exercise of mind, you will find that the work will in time proceed, until the, new creation in Christ Jesus unto good works is known. But when this is in measure attained, still watchfulness and prayer should be the companions of every mind. The command to watchfulness is of universal extent: “What I say unto you, I say unto all, watch.”+ Again, “Watch and pray, that ye enter not into temptation."! When this disposition or mind is rightly abode in, it preserves from formality in religion ; keeps the soul alive to God; and makes living members and bright examples in his church, and among his people. In this state of religious exercise the experience of the primitive believers is attained : “ By one Spirit are we all baptized into one body; and made to drink into one spirit.”'s Here also right qualifications are received for religious
* John iii. 3.
† John iii. 7.
service, and a capacity to fill up the measure of suffering or labour, which may be allotted in the church of Christ : a church, the members of which are thus described by an inspired apostle : “ Ye also, as lively stones, are built up a spiritual house, a holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices, acceptable to God by Jesus Christ.” *
As one of the objects of this publication, is to convey information to persons who arə not of our religious persuasion, I request that they would follow the example of the noble Bercans, and "search the Scriptures whether those things are so.”+ It is not probable that we shall all be brought to think alike on these subjects; but if we can see, that so much may be said by those from whom we differ, as to produce an increase of Christian charity, something, and something important, is gained. I am not a favourer of that false charity, which would destroy all religious zeal, and make all professions of religion immaterial. “Let every man be fully persuaded in his own mind;"I and, having endeayaured to obtain that per. suasion from due consideration, let him
* 1 Peter ii. 5.
+ Acts xvii. ll.
# Rom. xiv. 5.
support it with zeal, tempered with the meekness of wisdom.” Thus, notwithstanding the variety of opinions into which the Christian world is divided, the light of the Gospel will increase in the earth ; and we may..together promote the coming of that day, in which the Divine promise and prediction will be fulfilled : “ From the rising of the sun, even to the going down of the same, my name shall be great among the Gentiles; and in every place, incense shall be offered unto my name, and a pure offering.”* Then will “the kingdoms of this world become the kingdoms of our Lord, and of his Christ; and He shall reign for ever and ever.”+ * Mal. i. 11.
+ Rev. xi. 15,