Изображения страниц

evil stories in order to hurt him; sometimes occurred to me, whether and this practice indeed, whether the Psalmist's words, Ps. cxx. 3, 4. from direct malice, or an habit of may not as well refer to the cause what is commonly called jangling, of the wickedness as to its punishthe whole Bible is levelled against ment; “ What shall be given unto under the term evil speaking; thee” (how shall we account for “ Speak not evil one of another,” | such a supremely vile and misch, iv. 11. There is no sort of chievous spirit?) “ Sharp arrows wickedness that God declares his of the mighty with coals of junigreaterabhorrenceof. The Psalmist per," inflame and drive it to dissaid, and Paul quotes it of the un- traction; it is set on fire of hell. godly, Rom. iii. 13. as a proof of Hence this spirit also is so unthe utter depravity of human na- manageable, that you may tame ture, “ Their throat is an open the fiercest of animals, birds, and sepulchre; with their tongues they beasts, and even serpents and bave used deceit; the poison of crocodiles; but such a tongue, asps is under their lips, and the actuated by hell can no man tame; way of peace have they not known.” | it is an unruly evil, full of deadly Many people have no greater de poison. I know not what to comlight than to surmise, insinuate, or pare it so well to, as the man posspread evil and reproachful things sessed among the tombs, Matt. viii. of their neighbours, a proceeding 28. who was so fierce that none manifestly suggested by the same might pass that way; so this fiery tongue, with the view of tongue lays hold of, and does inalleviating its own misery by en- jury to all it can meet with. O! hancing the blame of other per- what mischief has it not done, and sons, and hiding its own guilt in does it not do daily! As the heart the good of other people's faults. is a world of iniquity, in like If then they can pick up any re- manner the tongue is deceitful proachful tale how greedily do they above all things and desperately grasp at it, and how eagerly spread wicked, who can know it? It has it abroad! If not,'tis easy to trump made in the world confusion and up a false story, and set it a-going; every evil work. It has separated and hence perhaps it is whispered chief friends, caused nation to rise abroad, and has travelled a circuit against nation, and army against of many miles before the victim of army.-By the force of this pestiits malignity has so much as heard lence, wars, fightings, slaughter of it. If any person'speak evil of and death have diffused their baleanother, instead of burying it in ful influence through the earth, and silence, it is retailed with additional the world is, as it were, set on circumstances of scandal calculat- fire of hell. Hell-fire has set the ed to give pain, and to provoke world on fire, and made it wretchwrath and strife. Now it mattersed; see! how great a matter a not, whether that which is reported little fire kindleth-do you wonder, be true or false; if false indeed, that all this considered, the tongue there is the guilt of lying and slander is in my text said to set the whole to be added to it; but if true, per. course of nature on fire, and to haps it is communicated with a defile the whole body? what can cruel design, and with so many be more hateful to God, or render garnishings of supposition and sus- man or woman more hateful, than picion, to render it the more hide- an evil tongue? The more pleasous, that in all it discovers the ing and attractive the sex, the more pleasure and gratification the dia- hideous the perversion of it by bolical spirit imagines, in making such hideous means, and to so another miserable; and it has hellish a purpose. It discovers a

mán, were there no other evi-| guilt and enmity, and while we dence, to be in a state of loath- were yet sinners he died for us. someness and defilement, at en- I sometimes wonder in my own mity with God- not happy in him; mind, and at my own mind, that for if he knew and felt the love of the humiliation of the Lord Jesus, God, his heart would be purged and the excruciating agonies he from an evil conscience- he would went through, do not make a serve the living God-and the deeper impression on the heart, conscience purged from dead and appear more visible in the con-' works, would not bring forth unto versation. Are these things true ? death, as we have said. But does Did they happen? Is an infidel, it not appear from all this, that judging from the behaviour of let a man talk of his religion, and (perhaps) the greater number of seem ever so demure in his pro- those who have made a solemn fession of it, yet if he bridle not profession that they belong to his tongue, his religion is all nothing. Christ, and are bought with his He testifies against himself that the blood-Is such an infidel to confire of hell is not quenched within clude, that they really credit what him ; whereas, on the other hand, they profess, or that they are sly ver. 2. if a man offend not in impostors, who are really the serword, the same is a perfect man, vants of mammon, while for the and gives proof that he is a real sake of private conveniency, they Christian, able to curb that mem- assume the garb of Christ; and on ber which is the most restless, and sundays at least, with his sunday's if able to bridle the tongue, able apparel, he has the appearance of also to bridle the whole. This a saint, and goes to the house and being the case then, brethren, table of the Lord in company with

III. It may be of use to enquire, such.-I don't wonder, then, that whether there be not a remedy for so many religious professors have this disorder--a tongue that is set no rest, and are actuated by the on fire of hell? Now, as we have blowing up of malignant passions : already observed, that the chief while the fire in the conscience recause why the tongue is thus set on mains, and its fury is unallayed, fire is that the heart, the conscience, the unavoidable effects must be has the wrath of God, which is wrath and torment. The gospel hell, within it, and is filled there- of the Son of God is so full and with; the main enquiry is to find complete, that by it the greatest of out a remedy for that ; remove sins and the vilest of sinners may that ; make that happy, and all be forgiven, and the pain of guilt the rest will follow of course. so completely removed, by the

The gospel of Christ, then, our Spirit revealing Christ to the soul, glorious Redeemer discovers, and at that you shall sing of mercy and large explains and expatiates on, as of judgment, and with rapture a full and sufficient cure for the fire shall say, “Is not this a brand unquenchable, the fire of a guilty plucked, and with almighty force, mind. It tells us of Jesus the plucked out of the fire ?" I am Lamb of God who taketh away astonished therefore that ministers the sin of the world : of Jesus, (and gospel ministers so called who came into the world for that also) do not insist oftener, and express purpose; who was infi- with the greatest plainness, honesty, nitely happy and glorious from all and earnestness, on this which is eternity--but who pitied us. He the root of religion in the soul, could see nothing in us to deserve and ought to be the leading topic his notice, yet he made himself of every Sermon. · We may talk one with us, took part in all our and talk well of the depravity and

wickedness of the heart, of the prayer with your hearing) that the depth of sin in the human soul, eyes of your mind may be opened and of the necessity of the work and enlightened, that so vou may of almighty grace to subdue and see, and know, and understand the dispel it; and yet at the same time word of life; find Christ as reyou may not speak of (perhaps not vealed in that word as the chief be aware, as I myself was not among ten thousand, the suitable, aware) of the first and leading the only, the all-sufficient, the cause ; and when I preached it, I faithful and never failing Saviour, was not believed: still I found that and so worthy of all acceptation, the generality of people had res of the very best reception, that you course in order to account for it, will not content yourselves with to the common complaint of the thinking, or having sometbing of a unknown wickedness of the heart, good opinion of him (which is a and the fruits and effects in the state of indifference, neither cold life, all which I firmly believe, and nor hot) but will seek intimate I hope as firmly deplore. But fellowship with him, and to have weep over it as we may and shall, him so applied to your souls, that weeping over it will not reach the upon the bare encouragement of cause or administer the cure. The God's word, you shall find youronly balm is sovereign grace; and self empowered to rest your soul the physician God. It tells us upon Christ for your comfort and that all who hear the news are satisfaction. And thus waiting on welcome to receive it, and doing the Lord, watching at Wisdom's so, shall not be disappointed; and gates, and waiting, as a poor begif any object, that they are too gar, at the posts of her doors, you unworthy, or too depraved to be will find life ; and by the witness the objects of mercy, the gospel of his Spirit obtain favour of the

declares that none are; but we Lord. God will himself witness it . must come as sinners, and sinners unto you; for he that believeth

only, abandoning every other hope hath the witness in himself, i John but Jesus Christ the Saviour of v. 6. God is rich in mercy (not sinners, and having our depen- niggardly or avaricious, as too dance alone on his own word, many of those called rich in this “ Him that cometh, I will in no world are) but gracious, full of wise reject,” or say No, to, “I will compassion, and abundant in goodin no wise cast out.” This is the ness and truth; mercy is his degrand remedy; and now, the busi- light; while we were yet sioners, dess is to take it, for our comfort, and provoking God's anger by our and for removing the fire of a / iniquilies, Christ died for us; and guilty conscience out of the soul. the vengeance was vot poured out If you believe this word which the upon the transgressors, but upon scripture so amply and affection. the person he loved best, and most ately declares, then you will read delighted in. , and hear it as the word of the Take therefore what he voluneternal God directed to you ; not tarily and spontaneously sets bethink of it as spoken to others, but fore you; hear him addressing you, to you, to you personally, as if “ Come, for all things are ready; God Most High were present be- and yet there is room.” Come and fore you, and speaking to you; he will visit your souls with his between him and you only; and salvation; he will open your eyes O! how reverently, diligently, and to understand and believe (really attentively will you listen to it, as believe it, which but very few do) the voice not of man but of God; that in Christ is all righteousness and you will pray to the Lord (mix and faithfulness; and enable, yea powerfully persuade you to take | wisdom that is from above is first Christ in the promise, with that pure, then peaceable, gentle, and composure to yourselves, as your easy to be entreated, full of mercy own salvation, all your desire, and and good fruits, without partiality the gift of God to you personally and without hypocrisy. It will and individually, that you shall not be disposed to take offence or see all your sins to be forgiven, the lay blaine, but have a measure of wrath passed away and transacted the same niind that was in Christ upon Christ, and you shall feel Jesus, who humbled himself, and peace in your consciences that when he was reviled, reviled not passeth all understanding; con again; of that charity spoken of science will be quiet, your mind | 1 Cor. xiii. 4. which suffereth long, composed, and your heart fixed yet is kind; which vauntetl not trusting in the Lord. Jesus will itself, doth not behave itself unbreathe on you, and say, “ Peace seemly; is not easily provoked ; be unto you;” and in him you will thinketh no evil, and therefore find that peace and enjoyment, that worketh none; hopetb all things, the world cannot give, and that beareth all things; rejoiceth not the world cannot take away. And in iniquity, and that for a good thus you will be, according to the reason, because it rejoiceth in the degree of your faith and confidence truth, that precious truth, which in what he speaks, more and more ) is of more worth to him than happy in him than if you had all rubies, yea all the jewels of the the Indies, and more entertained world are not to be compared with by him, than if you had all the it. This is the grand secret of pleasures of the world. In a word, human felicity, thus to come as a you'll have enough; and being in little child stripped of every emyourselves thus happy, and rejoic- bellishment into the kingdom of ing in the Lord (I wish I could say Christ. And do we not now per. always) you will have no taste, ceive, how justly that is called the no relish, for earthly amusements, kingdom of heaven? Heaven is still less for gossipping, slauder, made up of peace, happiness, and suspicion, evil surmising, envy and joy. Hell is full of rage, misery, ill-nature; your tongue will be and fury. In this world we have seasoned with grace as with salt; the spirit of heaven or of hell, just your tongue will have a savor of as far as we resemble the one or Christ and you will speak of him ; | the other; just as far as we have you will enjoy that conversation, or have not the fire of a guilty and it will preserve you from in mind within us quenched. Dro dulging wrath and rancour, and Watts in his Hymns states it beau lead to the ornament of a meek tifully, and quiet spirit, which in the sight

Madness by nature reigns within, of God is of great price. Enjoy. The passions burn and rage; ing this peace you will bless them

Till God's own Son with skill divine,

The inward fire assuage. that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them And that cannot be effected by that despitefully use you and per- sage documents to master the secute you. With this peace im- passions, and guard against bad planted in the breast, the whole tempers; the cure is all his own, soul will be peace. The fire of a by the application of his own blood, guilty conscience subdued and through the power of his own quenched by the application of Spirit: why then are so many the blood of Christ, the soul miserable expedients resorted to, will evince its inward peace by and this one, so sweet, so healing, wishing well to all about it. The / so little esteemed; rarely explainVOL. III.


ed; not always insisted upon, as In compliance with our cortés. the prime, the main, the most pondent's courteous request, we necessary ingredient in the cure ? | add as follows. To propose any other remedy, is P. 257, Col. II. Hauteur," à not unlike the contest fabled be- French word signifying haughti. tween the Hydrà and Hercules ; ness. when the latter cut off one lead, L -258, - I.“ Virus," the seven sprouted out in its room: Latin word, for poison, or the conthe beginning of strife is as when tagious quality. one letteth out water. If the - 259, ~ 11. * Men's conscia tongue set on fire of hell be now mali,the accusing conscience. 80 painful and destructive, and the -- 260, - 1.Radir," the peace of God in Christ be now so root, or source. salutary and efficacious, are we - 260,- 1.“ Primum mo. not called upon to be earnest with | bile," the main spring, or impulse, God that this peace may be more which puts all the other parts into known, and each for him and her- activity. self, see whether we are seeking this - 261, - 1. “Corruptio op. peace, and seeking it in the method timi est pessima"-" The corrupof the gospel ? What a blessed tion of the best is productive of world is that, where all is Christ, the worst”-i. e. The best and all is peace and happiness, and purest institutions, when once corthat for ever! O! choose Jesus rupted or vitiated, are found in and so depart from evil; seek peace the process of corruption to outdo and pursue it always. AMEN. the very worst.

1 If there be any other hard word

in the Doctor's Sermon which our To the Editor of the New Evangelical correspondent cannot master, we Magazine.

think he may be effectually relieved SIR,

by any English Dictionary, I HAVE been a purchaser and reader of your Magazine from

LETTER FROM A FATHER TO its commencement, and do vot

HIS SON LEAVING AN ACAscruple to assert that whoever! DEMY, TO FOLLOW THE PROreads and fully appreciates its FESSION OF THE LAW. general contents is under great ob. To the Editor of the New Evangelical ligations to the Editor for them.

Magazine. I am, Sir, an unlearned and ignorant man, and doubt not but many

SHOULD not the following Letter

be deemed inconsistent with the design of of your readers are in the same your useful publication, the insertion of circumstances. Will you then it might perhaps be beneficial to your have the goodness at the close of Juvenile Readers, and would greatly Dr. Jenkins's Sermon on Evil.


Your very obedient Servant, speaking, to give us an explanation of all the foreign words the Doctor | MY DEAR GEORGE, . introduces into the discourse, and

The feelings of a fond if the Dr. should write again, Father are very warm and lively desire him to consider what Paul when his children are the subject says about preaching in an un- of his thoughts; but circumstances known tongue, 1 Cor. xiv. 17. considerably influence the nature I am Sir,

and the ardour of those feelings. Very respectfully yours, Where affection and anxious solici

ROBERT DAVies. tude have been manifested towards Epping Forest, Walthamstou,

a Son," who has returned these September 2, 1817.

kindly emotions with disobedience


[ocr errors]
« ПредыдущаяПродолжить »