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And dear friends, let us be singly and in sincerity devoted to the will of God, whether to preach or be silent; for if we are not sensible of such a resignation, it is doubtful, that we may set ourselves at work, when we should be quiet, and so bring an uneasiness upon our friends, and a burthen upon ourselves. And this conduct will shut up Friends' hearts against our service and ministry. And my dear friends, every time you appear in the ministry, when it is over, examine yourselves narrowly, whether you have kept in your places, and to your Guide; and consider whether you have not used superfluous words that render tlie matter disagreeable, or such tones or gestures as misbecome the work we are about, always remembering, that the true ministers preach not themselves, but Christ Jesus our Lord. Let us bear this in mind, that neither arts, parts, strength of memory, nor former experiences will, without the sanctificationof the spirit, do anything for us to depend upon. Let us therefore, I entreat you, keep to the living fountain, the spring of eternal life, opened by our Lord Jesus Christ in our hearts.
I also desire, that you would not neglect your day's work, in visiting the dark corners of the counties about you; but be mindful of your service therein, as the Lord shall make way for it.
The things above written have been on my mind to communicate to you, my dear friends, with desires that the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ may be with your spirits, Amen. Hoping, also, that I shall not be forgotten by you. iu your nearest approaches to the throne of grace, in your supplications to the God of the spirits of all flesh; remembering me, that I may be preserved by sea, and in the wilderness, through the many and various exercises and baptisms that I may be suffered to undergo for the service's sake; and that I may be preserved in humility and self-denial, under the power of the cross, the most beautiful ornaments a minister can ever be clothed with; that if it please Him we should meet again, our joy may then be full in the Holy Ghost, which is the fervent prayer of your exercised friend and brother,
This was written in the Second month 1702, and left with my friend John Tompkins, not to send it until he heard I was gone off.
[To be continued.]
LIVING AND DYING.
The late Dr. Newton was once speaking of a lady who had recently died. A young lady immediately asked, "O, sir, how did she die?" The venerable man replied: "There is a more important question than that, my dear, which you should have asked first."
"Sir," said she, "what question can be more important than how did she die?"
"How did she live?" he replied.
The continuation of the interesting Sermon by Wm. Savery was unintentionally omitted in our last paper. We now finish it:
SERMON OF WILLIAM SAVERY.
And here, I believe, is the ground-work and foundation of all religion. Can any man say it is' not shown to him without the assistance of ministers or any human learning, without the assistance of men learned in the schools, men of science, men of many languages, or men of profound education? We can" attain the knowledge of these saving truths, which are so essential for us to know, believe, and practice. So that no man has any occasion, by any means whatever, to go inquire of his neighbor or his brother concerning these things. So that, my friends, though indeed we have invited you here, and are glad of your company to sit down in this manner, we seek not any thing that is yours, but you only to God, not to ourselves, not to this and that opinion, but that all men may come to the divine, eternal, and unchangeable principle iu themselves, that would teach us in all things, the same that is spoken of in a variety of passages in Scripture, and yet in this day so much neglected; the same that our Saviour promised should be with his followers to the end of the world, even his own eternal Spirit, the Spirit of God and Christ. This is the Ruler, the Director, the glorious and blessed Regulator of all things. Without it the Scriptures could never have been given; because by it all the men of God were inspired to behold the light God had granted them concerning the things thereof, and by it all men are enlightened more or less, for Jesus Christ is " the true Light that enlighteneth," not only those who have read the history of his life, death, and sufferings, his glorious and unparalleled miracles and divine doctrines, but also those that have never heard the name of Christ. So enlarged is my opinion concerning the equality of God's ways, and the Scripture amply and fully justifies this opinion, for Christ is called not only the light of his own followers who believed on him, but the true "light that enlighteneth every man that cometh into the world," be they of what name, of what distinction or nation they may. And this light (says the Evangelist John) is come into the world; but the reason why men continue under condemnation is this, says he, "light is come into the world, but men love darkness rather than light, because their deeds are evil;" they aie not willing to bring their deeds to this glorious touchstone, this test that would try all manner of actions, Christ in you, the hope of everlasting glory, in which the primitive believers were settled, and found here their rest.
Here from the beginning the Church of Christ was built, upon this holy of holies, and everlusting word of Christ and of God, speaking, directing,'teaching, and leading them wbersoever they should go. And if men had abode under this it would have taught them all the same thing, it would have preserved those that have called themselves Christians, as well as all other men, in harmony and unity. It could have made neither rents nor divisions. No, no such thing. It would not have told thee one thing and me another; by no means. Hut this is the language it would have proclaimed in thy heart and in mine, thatThe work of righteousness is peace, and the effect thereof is quietness and assurance forever. Now, is not this written upon every man's conscience? Yes, I am persuaded it is. And I have heard the wild inhabitants of America declare this was the truth, and they found it inscribed upon their hearts (according to their own expressions) by the finger of God's spirit himself, namely, that the work of righteousness is peace, and the way to be happy in this present life, and to be eternally happy in the world to come, is to obey his voice; to work rigbteousness; to be upright in heart; to do tho>e things which by this law written in them he had made known to thera they ought to do, and this divine principle I want more to come unto. But men have been too long bewildered in following one another in darkness and confusion. This is my faith, and I believe no oue man among us can say but this is the case.
We must (if ever we are brought back) come to the foundation and corner-stone whereon the first church was built. We must go to Christ; we must leave our dependence upon man and come to the fountain; for the same declaration may indeed be put to thee, and the expression will hold good with respect to far too many in this day that was expressed concerning the Jews— "My people have committed two great evils, they have forsaken me, the fountain of living waters, and they have hewn out to themselves broken cisterns that can hold no water." Well, my friends, I am assured that many of you assent to this; that of all the systems and inventions of men, be they ever so specious or maintained with ever so much pomp or eloquence, these do not, nor cannot, bring one soul to Christ. It must be something beyond all the powers of men; it must be by His own eternal power if ever we are brought to experience the glorious and blessed rest prepared for those that iove Him; for no man can come to the Father but by Christ, and "no man (said he) can come to me except my Father draw him." If Noah, Job, and Bauiel were here they could save neither son nor daughter's life; they could only, through God's grace and attention to his inspcaking word, be instrumental to save their own souls. For no man can either do the work for another, or by any means direct him after safety, but this holy, internal, unchangeable guide alone. Are there
any persons present who say "this is strange doctrino?" Well, my friends, if it is strange doctrine, it has this to recommend it at least, that it is not new: it is as old as the Apostles' days, and as old as the Prophets' days in former dispensations. But I believe life and immortality were in a more marvellous manner brought to light by the revelation of God through Jesus Christ. Therefore we need go no further back than the New Testament, for by the doctrine therein contained we hope and believe we are to be saved. Is not this the case? Yes, I believe it is. Well, then, my friends, let us see whether we live up to this doctrine; let us see whether
', we really are what the primitive churches were;
I let us find whether our belief is rightly founded, or whether we depend merely upon hear-say. 'Tis not upon the hear-say opinions of men;
''tis not from the works of the learned nor from the speeches of eloquence, but upon something that we feel within; for I believe this must finally bo the case, if ever we are prepared to join the host of Heaven, the redeemed and saved of God. We must know the truth in ourselves. Christ is the way, the truth, and the life, and he told us this before he left the world. He told us plainly that he that is with you shall be in you. Is there any doctrine more clear than this ?" He that is with you shall bo in you: and lo I am with you to the end of the world. And if I go away I will pray the Father, and he shall send another comforter:" that is, in another form, He shall send the Spirit of Truth, who shall lead and guide you into ull truth. Well, here is a safe direction, and an unchangeable directory too. He shall send you another comforter, even the Spirit of Truth, who shall lead and guide you into all truth; who shall take from me and shew it to you, and shall bring all things to your remembrance. Can there he any plainer doctrine than this? I believe many of you, my friends, assent to the truth of this, and that this is the way in which we ought to inquire after the truth as it is in Jesus; we ought to come to Him himself; we ought to retire to that holy uniting word which we have received r for (as said the Apostle) ye have no need that any man teach you. Why, then, are there so many teachers in the world, and maintained at so vast an expense? Why do so many take so much pains to qualify themselves to be teachers of the flock of Christ, if this is really the case'! And I trust, my friends, you will be candid enough to say, Certainly it is. You have no need that any man teach you, but as this same uniting word teaches you, which is Truth. I trust 1 am surrounded with many tender hearts, and many charitable Christians, who have been seeking the truth for many years. Why, then, my friends, you must come to this divine teacher before ever you can be favored with a knowledge of the truth. I verily believe no man will ever come to the knowledge of the truth in any other way. Thou roayest explore volumes after volumes, and spend much time in reading of many pious books and experiences of many favorite men of God. I do not despise inferior helps. The Scriptures are excellent, They are much more so and worthier to be held in greater estimation than all the books in the world. But the Scriptures point only to that holy, all-powerful Word, which indeed gave all the Scripture. The whole tenor of the Gospel doctrine is to bring men there—to settle them upon that foundation, where they may build with safety—to the teachings of the holy and blessed spirit of God within them. I know this is a doctrine too much exploded. How unjust! how derogatory to the poodnessand mercy of God to send thousands and millions of thousands into this world, with powers and faculties to conceive that there is immortality and to believe that there are glorious rewards in the world to come, if he had left us no other guide to go by.
Now, some will say, "We have the Scriptures to go by." Do we not see enough of this? Truly the Scriptures do direct us to this glorious principle within us, yet how do men turn them to every purpose! One learned man starts up in one quarter of the nation, and he says, " here is a portion of Scripture, and I assure you it means so and so;" and another declares with equal learning, with a great deal of study, and with abundance of eloquence, " my friends, it is so and so, this way you must believe;" and there is one even gone over to the country of my nativity, who, with the New Testament in his hand, is laying the axe by his arguments as much as is in his power to the very root of the Christian Religion. This is my faith, that he is destroying the foundation whereon it is built, and yet pretending to bring his doctrine from the Scripture. But what mill not sophistry do? What has it not done? O! the evils it has produced in the world. But I trust neither this man, learned and wise as he may be in the world's estimation, nor any other, will ever be able to sap that foundation which God has laid in Zion, nor to rob you or my own soul of that glorious hojye and blessed consolation in the redemption and mediation of our dear Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ God forbid it should, and I trust it will not. The Lord will, by his own light and power dispel every cloud and darkness that shall arise to cast up a mist before the eyes of the professors of Christianity.
But to return. I want you, my friends, it is my most earnest labor, wheresoever it may please God to take me, throughout his vineyard, to get people, if possible to build upon a foundation that those various opinions of men will not be able to shake. I know that there is a foundation where all those various and contradictory opinions of men may butt against the honest and
sincere-hearted pilgrim's dwelling and not be able to shake it. This I am persuaded of. Verily there is a rest for the people of God. There is something whereon we may build safe, that is, in Christ—" Christ In You the hope of glory." 0! that you may seek to him! God is no respecter of persons. He will teach all men himself; he will manifest his rrjercy equally to all men; he rejects none; he makes none of the distinctions of high and low, rich and poor, that we poor weak beings do. No; he is equal in his ways and just in all his doings, and those that come to him he will in no wise cast out; for "there is no difference (says the Apostle) between the Jew and the Greek, for one God over all is rich unto all that come unto him," rich to all that seek him, and so he remains to be.
0! my friends, were you to adhere to these plain and simple truths it would prevent a great deal of confusion in the world; it would bring about a different face and appearance among the professors of Christianity from what(we now behold in Europe; it would put an end to all dissensions; it would put an end to all envying one another; to all false, to all evil speaking, and even evil thinking one of another. This I am confident of, if it was adhered to; for Christ and his glorious dispensation is not a dispensation of strifa and dispute, for when he came there was even uttered by the songs of Angels, "Peace on earth and. good-will to men." And he declared that "By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye love one another." And so we may as reasonably conclude that by this shall all men know that ye are not Christ's disciples, if ye hate, devour, and destroy one another. It is as clear to me as the sun that shines in the firmament. He was the Prince of Peace, of whose government the Prophet Isaiah declares there never should be an end. 0 ! my fellow Christians, let us with all our sauls draw nigh unto and seek for bis holy power to influence our hearts; that he may bring us into the bond of Christian charity, and of holy and blessed union one with another; that he may destroy all that seeks to blow up nations and kingdoms into confusion, and that seeks to bring distress upon individuals, nations, and countries! Do not we behold the ravages of War? What has it done even in this nation, where the sound of WAR has only been heard? How many weeping widows, how many tender parents has it lately deprived of their support? It never would have been so, I am persuaded, if the professors of Christianity had kept to their first principle. No man can believe it, I think, with the Bible, in his hand, which forbids in our Lord's express words our saying in this glorious day, " An eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth." Yet, alas! Is it not the language too much used among us? "Thou hast injured me,and therefore I will injure thee; thou hast spoken evil of me and I will speak evil also of thee." But ought it to be so? Ought wo uot rather to suffer injuries, as the primitive believers did, without murmuring, without complaining? They received them all with meekness, as their holy and blessed Redeemer did before them; who, even when he was about to quit the body by the hands of cruel men, did not he set us a glorious example, he that had power to call legions of angels at his command, when meekly iu this manner he addressed his father towards his last moments, "Father, forgive them, for they know "not what they do?"
"Well (but some may say) is it really possible to come into this spirit of forgiving of injuries, to bear insults without even returning and i retorting again?" Why, yes; I verily believe the Gospel Spirit would load us into all this. "Why, then, (some may say) wouldst thou have men to be cowards?" No, by no means. Cowards where they ought to be cowards, to be sure, afraid to do evil; but magnanimous heroes under the servile and in the service of our glorious King, the Lord Jesus Christ! because the Lamb and his followers will finally obtain the victory. 0! then, my friends, let us with one accord add to our faith, works. It is a glorious and blessed faith; but if thou add not to thy faith works, is there a probability that thou wilt reap the glorious reward? What is it that our blessed Lord pronounced to those that distinguished themselves with works of mercy, with works of benevolence, and works of peace, who lived in the peace of his divine and holy religion, which he had given them to observe: "Come, ye blessed; of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you before the foundation of the world. I was sick, and in prison, and ye visited me; I was hungry and ye fed me; I was naked, and ye clothed me; I was a stranger, and ye took me in to comfort me. Come, ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world."
Now, it is this kingdom that I want you, my friends, all to inherit. To be so prepared against the awful summons which is approaching to us all, that we may look forward without dismay; that we may be favored with that hope which will be as au anchor to the soul, both sure and steadfast, for whatever we may have promised to ourselves, in a moment that thou knowest not "the Son of Man cometh." Thy days here may be few. "Bust tftou art, and to dust thou shalt return."
Earth's highest station ends in, " here he lies:"
Jacob, in his dream, saw a ladder reaching up from earth to heaven; certainly there is a Jacob's ladder, reaching up from earth to heaven. That is more than a dream. Every round in it is either a grace or a duty.
I'or Friends' Intelligencer.
Noah Worcester's activity was constant. He was a student and thinker. He entered with interest into the subjects which engaged public attention, and pursued with ardor and perseverauce those which excited his own. He had the good habit of studying with pen in hand, writing his thoughts on the subjects which lie would thoroughly investigate. It has been said, in exaggerated terms, but with some foundation, "that it was his practice to write a book on whatever subject he was studying; that in studying grammar he wrote a grammar; that he did the same in arithmetic," <tc. This constant use of the pen naturally led to frequent publications. He contributed largely during this period to various periodicals and newspapers, on theological and other subjects. The habit thus early formed of putting his thoughts on paper followed him through lite, and became a neverfailing source of companionship and content when sickness and soli'ude closed against him the common resources of life.
In 1797 he suffered a severe affliction in the loss of his wife, after a happy marriage of eighteen years. Her death was occasioned by the accident of falling from her horse. The tenderness with which the memory of this early object of his affections dwelt upon his mind, is manifested in a little poem iu which he vented his feelings when more than seventy years of age. She appears to have been a woman well deserving to be loved and remembered, modest, prudent, industrious, and pious, one of the many whose worth, only known in private places, goes down unrecorded to the grave, and whose history, if snatched from oblivion, would cause them to live a little longer on the earth which they did something to adorn and bless.
Left with the charge of eight children, under circumstances of great trial and difficulty, he entered into a second marriage connection with one who lived to be the comforter of his later years, and died five years before him. To her I economy, industry, and unwearied solicitude for j his health and prosperity he was much indebted, not only for his comfort but for his ability to bring up his children and to pursue his studies.
In the year 1806 he met with an accident which was the occasion of much suffering and continued infirmity. This was a partial rupture of the muscles from the tendons of the legs. For many months he was unable to walk or stand. The great change thus produced iu his habits brought on a dropsical tendency, which did not leave him for three or four years. He never recovered the use of his limbs so as to walk with ease. Prior to this he had been a man of uncommon muscular power. He was noted for his capacity of laborer on a farm ; very few, it is said, were willing to compete with him. Although this vigor of his younger days stands in sad contrast with the feebleness of his body after he had passed the prime of life, yet it is beautifully instructive to observe how the soul rose superior to the frail tabernacle.
Noah Worcester had been educated a Calvinist, and a believer in what is called the Westminster Catechism, which includes a belief in the doctrine of the Trinity. His first doubts as to this commonly received doctrine arose from the confusion and perplexity into which his mind was thrown by this doctrine in bis acts of devotion. To worship three persons as one and the same God, as one and the same being, seemed to him difficult, if not impossible. His active inquiring mind, could not rest satisfied with adoptiug and subscribing to what appeared to him an irrational dogma. As he advanced in religious experience, and became willing to follow the light that dawned upon his understanding, he not only became convinced of the Scripture truth that "God is one,'' but that it was his duty publicly to express this conviction. This he did through the medium of a Theological magazine. His public dissent from a doctrine considered so essential was the cause of much coldness and alienation from many of those with whom he had mingled in fellowship, and his sensitive miud suffered keenly from this cause. But he was enabled to give the world a new proof that it is possible to speak the truth in love, in spite of the most adverse circumstances, and to retain the devotednesss and iweetness of the Christian spirit, though departing from the orthodoxy of what is called the Christian faith. He fays: "How far I was honest in my inquiries must be referred to the Searcher of hearts. All my prejudices, resulting from education, from regard to worldly interests, aod to my own reputation, were thrown into the scale in favor of the doctrine. I had been educated in the belief that the doctrine was true and essential, and I had heard so much of the heresy, infidelity, and irreligion of those who bad departed from it, that the thought of becoming of that class of ministers filled my mind with dismay. But notwithstanding all these circumstances to bias my mind, such was the force of Scripture language, and particularly that of Jesus himself, in relation to the Father and himself, observing how constantly he represents himself «s not God, but one sent by God, dependent on God, doing the will of God, and not his own •ill, that 1 could not resist it, but was led by it first to doubt the truth of the 'popular doctrine,' and finally to dissent from it, at the risk of my character and worldly prospects."
Although the sincerity and Christian meekness of the advocates of any doctrine are no proof of the correctness of their views, similar examples having occurred in the passing of members
of any one community of Christians to any other, yet the true inference to be drawn, and that a most mighty and delightful one, is that the essential vitality of Christianity does not lie in certain doctrinal dogmas, but that every faithful, devout, conscientious inquirer finds it, whatever be the form in which his notions of certain dogmas rest. The Great Father seems intentionally to show his children how worthless in his eyes are their notions and speculations on all those inaccessible subjects by allowing their minds, under the brightest illumination, and after the most earnest, laborious investigation, to find peace in the most opposite results. What a significant rebuke does this plain fact give to the arrogance of sectarianism!
The profound consciousness of this truth clothed Noah Worcester's spirit with a worldwide liberality, and a modesty as gentle as his love of truth was strong. Confident, but not arrogant, and persuaded that love, the Christian spirit, is better than the reception of doctrinal truth, his life became henceforth a perpetual plea for charity, and an uninterrupted protestation against any form of ill will, oppression, and dogmatism.
in 1813 he removed with his family to Brighton, and became the editor of the Christian Disciple, a religious periodical devoted to the advocacy of liberty and truth. This he conducted to the close of 1815, when he relinquished it on account of debility.
His mind being now settled on the subject which for many years had exercised it, he soon found himself taken up with two trains of thought, which for some time gave direction to his life. The first of these was favored by his duties as editor of the Christian Disciple. That journal not being designed for controversial discussion, nor for theological learning, but for the instruction of the people in their religious rights and the promotion of spiritual and moral improvement, he gave himself up freely to the advocacy of liberty and charity. His own experience had led him to think much of the evils controversy, and of the Christian duties of forbearance, candor, and charity toward those who differ in religious opinion. Bigotry and censoriousness seemed to him among the greatest crimes of the Christian Church. The "Disciple," as it came forth with its monthly burden, might remind one of the aged disciple John, who is said from Sabbath to Sabbath to have risen before the congregation to repeat the affectionate exhortation, " Little children, love one another."
The other subject was not unconnected with this: that of war and peace. It had enlisted his attention before leaving New Hampshire, and it soon grew to be the chief topio of his life, by which he was to win the title of a benefactor of mankind, and be remembered and honored to the latest age. [7b be continued.