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written in favour of each of the the general reader, yet they are of exclusive theories, the truth may importance even to an elementary be in the medium; it being pro- acquaintance with Geology, and bable that the present external are essential to the appreciation of shape of the earth was produced certain deductions as to the changes by the varied operation of fire and which have passed on the surface water.
of the globe. These conclusions, The facts and statements of this in connexion with an exhibition of paper, though divested, as much their harmony with the Mosaic as possible, of technical and scien- record, will form the subject of a tific terms, may yet prove, we fear, final paper. of comparatively little interest to
REMARKS ON A RECENT NUMBER OF THE CHRISTIAN OBSERVER.
(To the Editor.)
It is therefore matter of regret, DEAR SIR-I occasionally see when there is even an occasional “ The Christian Observer;" com- departure from a correct and canpared with most of the religious did spirit. Articles do, however, periodicals of the Episcopalians, somehow or other find their way it is dignified and candid. The into that Magazine, which violate “ Christian Remembrancer,” in its its general principles, and on the opposition to evangelical truth and ground of Christian candour and attachment to the worst parts of charity deserve to be exposed. It is Episcopacy, reminds us of the spi- well known, that a number of Disrit and the times of Laud. The senting families and reading socie“ British Magazine" appears anxi. ties have for years taken in the ous to outstrip the former publica- Christian Observer. It cannot theretion, in all that is calumnious fore but wound their feelings, and against other denominations. No do injury to the common cause of statement sent to it against Dis. Christian charity, to find charges senters, however false and incre- brought against Dissenters which dible, seems to be rejected. The cannot be proved, and motives as. defence of “ things as they are,” in cribed to them which have no founthe National Church, appears to dation in truth. The May number has be its province, and in discharging grievously sioned in these respects. its office the most dishonourable The first paper is, “ On the prinmeans are employed. The “ Chris- ciple of the London City Mission." tian Guardian” has of late years It contains the writer's reasons for assumed the guardianship of all not joining that new Society. To that is uncandid and petty, among this there can be no objection, for a small portion of the evangelical we believe that good men of clergy. The Christian Observer” various denominations differ in has, however, taken higher ground, opinion, as to the desirableness of and has long been considered by such an institution, as well as on evangelical churchmen and Chris- the probability of its success. In tians of other denominations, as the giving his reasons, however, the most respectable and influential of writer las inculpated Dissenters, the Episcopal periodicals.
which no defence of himself made necessary or desirable. I have, I and dissent. Now, sir, as I conceive, confess, been astonished at the with our Reformers and the Puritans, mixture of truth and error, which
that no temporary good can compensate
for the breach of a principle, so I feel that short letter contains; at the
myself bound to withhold my support incorrect reasoning—bold assump
from a scheme which, by levelling the tions—mistakes in history, and
agency of the Church with that of Dislamentable ignorance of the nature sent, invades and subverts that ascenof Christ's kingdom, which are dancy which, as a spiritual means, is presented in the space of four pages conferred on it by the State.” and a half. If the writer repre. How awfully defective as a sents the sentiments of the evan- Christian Church must that church gelical party in his church, there be, which traces its power to the seems to be no hope of escape State! and seems to glory in the from the degradation of State con. fact, that its ascendancy over other troul for that impure connexion communions is derived from man ! which now exists, is held with Not that power which is given by tenacious grasp, as essential to the the Son of God, not that influence spread of the gospel in this country. which arises from devoted and Let the article be read, and this successful effort in the cause of remark will not appear too severe. Christ, - not that which consists I can here only give one or two in the enlightened and spiritual extracts, to show the mind of the character of its ministry, - no, writer.
but in Acts of Parliament ! The third reason for not joining Hear the writer in his eighth the new Society, is as follows:- reason :
“ Eighthly. Dissent has every thing to “ Thirdly. The evangelization of the
gain by this master-piece of Liberalism, people, and thus their temporal prosperity and the Established Church every thing as the inseparable companion of their
to lose; the agents in support of her holiness, by means of the Established
cause in this plan being detached from Church, is the received constituted order
all responsibility to any Church authoof this realm. Human wisdom and
rity, except the incidental superintendence human experience have confirmed the
of the mixed authority of the Committee. sound expediency of the same; and
And if the Established Church loses, the every additional exhibition of Dissent,
State loses, the country loses, and the however apparently good in the view
people at large lose, the great, effective, of a short-sighted'expediency, has, by
and permanent bulwark of their moral weakening the great principle of evange
and spiritual blessings. For I hesitate lizing the country through the medium
not to say, and appeal to experience in of the Establishment, really, I appre
confirmation of the assertion, that as the hend, carried us further from our pur
Established Church flourishes throughout pose, and introduced actual and perma
the land, so have the people at large the nent evil under the appearance of speci
enjoyment of solid spiritual blessings, ous and temporary good. We hear men
and an earnest that their posterity shali speak of the advantages of Dissent,
enjoy the same." which, after all, are but few and questionable; but we do not hear them speak
The thoughts that struck me on of the incalculable disadvantages of the reading these lines, took the form same; . and for this plain reason,-be of questions? cause they are incalculable; and it is « Pray,” I was ready to ask, morally impossible for any man to cal- " during what period in the hisculate on the mischief which shall result
tory of the Established Church, from the invasion of a principle, or to detail the actual jealousies, malignities,
did it fourish so as to furnish a bad feelings, and levelling liberalism,
proof, that the writer's assertion is which necessarily spring from disunion correct? Was it in King Henry's days, or in Elizabeth's, or the placed in every parish, Dissent would First James's, or the First Charles's? cease. Let us be true to our Established Was it at the Restoration and iust Church then, and she will be true to us;
for she is God's own instrument, and has before or after the passing of the
His blessing accordingly.
“But who is to wait till this desirable Queen Anne's days, or when Ox- state of the Established Church arrives? ford expelled the six praying Stu- Certainly not those whose faithless imdents? Or in Romaine's days, patience will not give God credit for the when half a dozen of like-minded efficacy of His own appointed means. men could hardly be found in the
But what is wanting to give efficacy to
these means? A combination of the Episcopal church ?"
Evangelical influence of the Church, actThis appeal to “ experience,"
" experience; ing with resolute energy on a given prinmust rest on something besides the ciple, by given means, tó a given end. mere opinion of the writer. If Such a combination, under God, would worth any thing, he ought to have be irresistible: it would enforce reform referred to some fact, as a matter both in Statesmen and Churchmen. The of history, known to the readers of
people would hear its voice as the “yox
Ecclesiæ,' and as such, vox Dei.' the Christian Observer. I confess
less The times are peculiarly favourable for
the that I am unable to fix on any the exercise of such an influence. Resuch sunny spot, in the dark his- spectable Dissenters under such an influtory of a secular church. It would ence would be un-dissented, and support indeed be an oasis in the desert. the Church ; the refuse of Dissent would
The writer, after stating his rea- sink down into Radicalism and its native sons for his conduct, with refer
odiousness; and sound Evangelism would
be blest in producing and maintaining ence to the new Society, gives his
sound reform. But for the Church to panacea for removing the moral join Dissent as Dissent, in effecting the desolations of London. He appears spiritual regeneration of the people, is, I an apt disciple of Dr. Chalmers, apprehend—if the principles of our Esand something more. At the close tablishment are just, if the Reformers of his paper, he thus writes :
were wise in instituting it, or the Puritans
commendable in enduring the trials they “ After much experience, and long ob
did endure rather than violate its prinservation of our dense population, I see
ciple by dissent-to attenuate its own no other mode of reclaiming them to
efficacy, to dissipate its own resources, Christianity but this. Dissent, in all its
and to employ its own energies to its own manifold variety, is utterly unequal to
destruction; and hence defeat the very
des this work. It may unsystematize sys
purpose, the maintenance of the church tem, and interrupt order ; and by partial of Christ, for which it has pleased God good blind the eye to the extensive mis
to establish it.” chief it is committing. Never, perhaps, was Dissent more prominent, and more Is it possible that any man with busy, than at this day ; yet what man of his eyes open, to the past or preobservation can reasonably expect the sent condition of thousands of supply of our spiritual deficiencies from
parishes in England and Wales, Dissent? Separation is its very soul and spirit; and how can the same thing under the desolating and antiat once separate and unite? It is our christian system of patronage, parochial system, carried out into all the with only one sixth part of the comprehensive utility and charity for clergy evangelical preachers; with which the State has designed it-each a Bench of Bishops rajsed to their parish being placed under a really high station by political means. independent minister -- that God has honoured, and does honour, by the con
and only two or three of them firmation of his Spirit; and I have heard acknowledged to be spiritual, enmore than one Dissenting minister con- lightened men; is it possible, we fess, if one Evangelical minister were ask, to mark these things, and yet
see in such a state religion, the dered the absurdities of Dissenting fanamaintainer of the Church of Christ ticism?”
-nay, " the leading church of All this is in very bad taste, and Christ in the land."
displays any thing but a kind and But it may be said these are the candid spirit. I certainly did views of a correspondent, not of not expect such sắeering remarks the Editor, unless the insertion of from the Editor. An assertion the letter is to be viewed as sanc. is made, that “ Evangelical Distioning its general principles, if not senters," along with Socinians, its details. Be this as it may, warmly embrace Bishop Maltby. the same number has an Edito- Where is the evidence of this ? rial article, which contains a pas. We have a right to enquire, has sage that ought not to have been any address been presented to him penned, without distinct and con- by the Evangelical Dissenters, as clusive evidence. The article re- such, of his old diocese, similar to ferred to is in the form of a brief the one presented by the Estacontroversy between the Editor blished clergy and laity, lamentand a Conservative paper, called ing his leaving them-or have any the ". Durham Advertiser." The of the Evangelical Dissenters of newspaper in question, in order, it his new diocese presented an adis supposed, to propitiate the new dress of congratulation ou his reBishop, inserted the letter of a cent appointment? Does not the correspondent, who referred to the Editor know, that we repudiate pages of the Christian Observer, the whole system of appointing as praising Dr. Maltby. This was Political or Socinian Bishops ? Is disowned by the Editor, and the he not aware that the “ Evanquotation which was given from gelical Dissenters" consider the the Magazine, was shown to be readiness with which ungodly men, garbled and to be designedly em- of all shades of religious belief, can ployed to impose on the public. enter into the church, and rise even After animadverting in a severe but to the highest offices, as one of the apparently just manner upon the great evils resulting from a State conduct of the paper referred to, connexion ? Does he not know the following paragraph closes the that “ Evangelical Dissenters" reproof.
are not favourable to Socinians,
whether in or out of the Establish« It is the singular fortune of Bishop ment; and that at this very time Maltby, in the strange amalgamations of an attempt is made to cast odium modern Liberal politics, to be embraced on them, for their decision on this warınly not only by Socinians, but by very subject? I should have ' Evangelical Dissenters,' of whom he deemed it more worthy of the Edihas often spoken in terms of scorn, which
tor's character and respectability,
forks they are contented to forget now that so : many of them prefer liberal' clergymen
instead of this attack on us, to to what used to be styled 6 evangelical have protested against yielding ones. If they wish to know his Lordship's canonical obedience to a man, who opinion of what he is pleased to call was, according to his own showing,
itinerant preachers and haranguers in heterodox in sentiment. He should private houses,' and of people who pray have openly and boldly declared, extempore, they may consult with advan
that he could hold no communion tage our Volume for 1831, p. 572. Will his Lordship say that he has altered those with one, who held the deadly opinions; or that political amities have errors ascribed to him, till he had made him lenient to what he then consi- disavowed them publicly. But no, he rests satisfied with referring to character at all, is this to be conthe past, and allows things to go strued into a “ warm embrace ?” If on as usual. He in fact acknow. so, I should like to know, what ledges him as a Christian Bishop, the union of the Editor with such a a Right Reverend Father in God, person, in all religious and ecclesia dispenser of the benefits of apos. astical matters, should be called ? tolic succession, a ruler in his own Something, I opine, stronger, church, and yet, if he be a Socinian more emphatic, than the “ warm he must be a perjured man. Which embrace” of “ Evangelical Disparty then embraces the Bishop? senters." Who kneels at the same communion I sincerely regret this attempt table with him? Who admits him to produce alienated feelings among into his pulpit ? Who yields to his Christians, on political grounds. claim of being a successor of the Least of all should I have exapostles, authorized to give offi- pected any thing of the kind in the cial and indelible character to men, pages of the “ Christian Observer." appointed to administer the ordi- If the Bishop of Durham has found pances of religion? Who must yield out, from his intercourse with Disto his authority as his diocesan, if senters, that they are not such he should be made Bishop of Lon- fanatics as he had once supposed, don? Is it the " Evangelical Dis- it is honourable to show this by senter ?" No, but the very writer different conduct. It would be of the paragraph in question! We well if there was as much candour are clear from these fearful incon among those who boast of a purer sistencies.- If it had so happened creed. In that case “ Evangelical that some individual Dissenter had Dissenters” would not have needed observed the common courtesies of to complain of the editorial resociety, wben the Bishop was leave marks of the Cbristian Observer. ing his former residence, without
Yours, &c. having any reference to his religious June.
LAST PRAYER OF MARY QUEEN OF SCOTS; Said to have been written at Fotheringay Castle, on the morning of her execution,
TRANSLATION. Oh! Domine, Deus, speravi in te; Oh! Lord, supreme God, my hope is in Oh! care, mi Jesu, nunc libera me;
thee; In dura catena,
Oh! thou, my dear Jesus, now liberate In misera pena,
Confined in these chains,
Oppressed with my pains,
I long after thee.
While fainting and sighing,
While prostrate I'm lying,
Deliver thou me.