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Kerr ; as well as the important ad- To the Editor of the Christian Observer, vantages which have accrued to the Company from the same source; MR. OBSERVER, and we have to notice the Christian My natural serenity of temper must charity manifested by the publica- prevent my addressing you with any tion of his religious tracts, which keenness of raillery, or acrimony of combined the advantages of disse censure, however I may feel the inminating the doctrines of Chris- jury which I have long sustained, tianity and conducing to the utility and which I now publicly lament. of the Orphan Asylum.
My origin is not vulgar; nor is my " In promotiog the cause of the residence mean: associate with religion which he professed, and the happy spirits above, who treat the benefit of the institution which me with reverence, and who never he superintended, he was animated feel more exquisite delight than with an ardour, activity, and per when I am present. severance, which nothing could At the same time I reside amongst abate but the attainment of the ob men; and, considering the obligaject.
tions they are under to regard me, “ Hence, by some, with whose as also the happiness which I imprivate interests, prejudices, or pas- part when I am properly regarded, sions his public duties and sacred I confess I am hurt to be treated, as functions had to contend, he has I generally am, with utter neglect, been considered sometimes to have or with ibat trivial notice which exceeded the serene and sober spirit makes much nearer approaches to of the evangelical character. An in- the mockery of insult than the ho. timate knowledge of our departed mage of respect. friend enabled us more correctly to My empire is small, and my faithdiscern his motives and to appre ful servants are few. A rival *, ciate bis merits :-in truth, no trait whose appearance is frightful, whose of his conduct reflects on his cha. sentiments are impious, and whose racter more lustre and honour, than voice is disagreeable, lives in these this which some have ventured to lower regions, and has been too arraign.
successful in expelling me from “ His ardour was the flame of many of the abodes of men. practical piety, his zeal was the But the injury, on account of emanation of active benevolence. which I now apply to you for re
“ He was a plain, but an impres- dress, springs from a class of people sive and an edifying preacher. whom I respect, and by whom I
“ With the accomplishments of am respected. You know that I the scholar, he combined the man- have a claim, founded in wisdom, pers of the gentleman, and great and established by custom, to apa knowledge of the world.
pear at table for a few moments at " He possessed a generous, a dise the time of meals, before the repast interested, and delicate turn of mind, is begun, and when it is concluded. rendering him a respectable and Meals, in these indulgent times, are valuable member of society, an of frequent recurrence. On some agreeable companion, and an affece of these occasions I am called in; tionate friend.
on others I am forgotten. This pro• His soul was susceptible of all duces, as may easily be conjectured, the cbarities; and he might be much irregularity of conduct, and truly held out as an exemplary pat- much perplexity of feeling, which tern of the filial, conjugal, paternal, at present I need not describe at and social virtues.”
I entreat you to advocate my
CHRIST. OBSERV, No. 123.
Assemble around you, Mr. solemnity of the day; and after Observer, your pious and learned some little conversation, succeeded friends. Examine ancient records, in persuading them to desist. and ancient manners. Trace out During my remonstrance with the practice of the wise that has the ringers, one of them observed, been marked with propriety, and that he thought there was no more that of the foolish that has been harm in their ringing the bells, than marked with absurdity. You may in the farmers of the parish eminform your readers how I have ploying their horses and men, on been abused by detention that was that day, in the usual labours of unreasonable, and vociferation that husbandry. Though there was no was ridiculous; and how I am now great difficulty in answering this arequally abused, such is the change gument, yet I was sorry that he had of manners, by being compelled to it to produce; and if such a permove with dispatch, and to speak in sun perceives the conduct of the a whisper.
farmer to pass unnoticed, he will be From the inspired oracles, the next led io question the propriety custom of the wise, and the dictates and utility of the fast itself. of enlightened and solid piety, lay Can, then, nothing be done to down, I entreat you, such rules that induce the farmers and indeed my appearance on these occasions tradesmen in general) to pay a more may be regular and proper. Let decent attention to the duties of a me not be compelled to usurp the Fast? In cities and large towns, place of a venerable sister*; and yet the shops may be shut, and the .do what you can to free me from streets may wear the appearance
of the insults which I experience from a Sabbath-day: but go a few miles such enemies as these; conformity, into the country, and, but for cowardice, formality, forgetfulness, the chiming of the church bells, a and neglect. Especially would i person would hardly see any thing entreat you to decide on the import- to remind him that it was a day set ant point, whether I ought to be apart for public humiliation before admitted to the evening lea-table, God. Now tbis evil seems to call which certainly is an honour that for some interposition of authority. I do not now enjoy, except in a few The clergyman of a parish can do exempt instances. In short, you little with fifteen or twenty farmers, -will be explicit in stating when and who are determined not to lose an how I am to appear.
hour's work, especially as they have Such, Mr. Observer, is my re the general practice of the counquest; and I have no doubt but that try to support them. Desirous as I your attention to it will promote am, in these momentous times, to the interests of
promote as much as possible the religious and universal observance of a fast, yet what can an indivi.
dual do to remedy an evil of such To the Editor of the Christian Observer. magnitude as this? I do therefore
hope, that some persons possessing On my way home from my church intluence and authority may be inin the evening of last Fast-day, I duced to consider and suggest the perceived that the ringers of the means by which a remedy may be parish were preparing for a peal. applied. Struck with the extreme impropriety of this, I returned, and endea- , P. S. Another of the ringers thuught voured to convince them how in there was no more harm in ringconsistent such an act was with the ing on the evening of a Fast
day, than on the evening of a * Devotion.
Sunday. This is true, I wish,
A COUNTRY RECTOR.
however, to ask; whether, as I Such proctors and patrons the truth can in some measure regulate the might spare.”-Hooker's Works, Oxf. conduct of my own parish, though Ed. Epis. Ded. p. 123. not of a whole county, I can put Whether Calvin be, like Priscila slop to ringing on a Sunday lian, an heretic, I leave to those evening ? I mean, whether I have who are more wise than I am, to authority to do so?. It is doubt- determine. I confess there is someless an employment but ill ac- thing in the Divine decrees, not becording with the sanctity of the yond my faith, but beyond my Sabbath.
very limited, faculties to comprehend. The evil which I deeply
lament is, that this hatred of Cal. To the Editor of the Christiun Observer. vin should be carried to so unreason,
able a length, that every man Reading lately the Epistle Dedica- careful of virtuous conversation, tory of ibe judicious Hooker to his studious of Scripture, and given to Ecclesiastical Polity, I could not any abstinence from worldly pleahelp applying the following passage sures, should be in danger of being to the controversies of the present set down in the calendar of suspecta day, and thinking the case of those ed Calvinists, and that the surest formerly stigmatised (whether just- expedient to prove his soundness ly or unjustly was seldom consider- from the tajnt of evangelical doced), with the name of Priscillianists, trine, is to indulge in a more licen, very much resembles the treatment ţious and loose behaviour, Such now experienced by the men so proctors (Barristers I bad almost injudiciously attacked under the said) and patrons the truth might name of Calvinists and Evangelical well spare. Clergy.
Sermons, charges, pamphlets, “I deny not" (says this excellent volumes, are daily issuing from the writer) “ but thai our antagonists in press, against those who are denothese controversies may peradven- ninated Evangelical Clergymen, and ture bave met with some not un- Gospel Preachers. Could the velike to Ithacius, who mightily bend- nerable Cranmer or Latimer revisit ing himself by all means against that church which they planted, and ibe heresy of Priscillian (the hatred watered with their blood, what of which one evil was all the virtue would they say to find such names be bad), became so wise in the end, converted into terms of reproach ; that every man careful of virtuous and that a zeal for the doctrines conversation, studious of Scripture, they taught, and the practice they and given unto any abstinence in recommended, should only serve diet, was set down in bis calendar to bring on the imputation of meof suspected Priscillianists, for whom thodistical cant and hypocritical puit should be expedient to approve ritanism? their soundness of faith by a more
I am, &c. licentious and loose behaviour.
REVIEW OF NEW PUBLICATIONS.
The Life of Ulrick Zwingle the Swiss fore condensed into the same num
Reformer. By J. G. Hess. Trans- ber of pages. In addition to all lated from the French by Lucy this, the work is well written; and Aikin. London: Johnson & Co. though we have not seen the origi1812. 8vo. pp. 325.
nal, we venture to infer, from the
good sense and good English of alThe Reformation is an event to most every sentence, is well transwhich the attention of Protestants lated. Of some defects, indeed, cannot too often be called. It was, both in the author and translator, like the descent of the ark upon we shall have occasion to speak Ararat, the moment of deliverance hereafter. For the present we shall to the family of God. It was a pe- devote ourselves to a far more gratiriod at which the proper standard fying task--that of collecting from of religion was once more adjusted; this work, and placing before our and, therefore, to which all subse- readers, some of the most interesting quent periods in the history of the parts of the life of Zuinglius and of is: church may properly be referred, the history of the Reformation in and by which our progress or de. Switzerland. cay may in some measure be esti. Ulric Zuinglius was born in a mated.
village of Switzerland, Jan. 1, 1484, This motive might have been Born in the house of a peasant,
he enough in itself to have induced is one of the many instances that is us to avail ourselves of the oppor- real genius is of a nature not to be tunity afforded us of touching upon kept down by any weight of super. this great theme, by the publication incumbent circumstances
. Reared of the volume before us. The Re- amid the awful rocks and chasms formation, indeed, is far too large of his country, and familiar for a & topic for a review. The crowd time only with its rustic inbabitants, of distinguished characters who he carried into life something of the performed in its principal scenes; stern majesty, and of the unambithe remarkable vicissitudes in its tious integrity, which such scenes history; the extent of territory and circles might be thought likely through which this vast moral to inspire. His father, from the inmovement was felt, are all unfriendly dications which he gave
of extraor to any attempt at cursory investiga- dinary talent, having determined zion. But in the history of the re to dedicate him to the church, he formation in Switzerlaud, we was sent to a school, first at Basil, presented with a sort of corner, then at Bern, and afterwards at which is more within our grasp. Vienna; whence he returned 10 Another motive for this examination Basil, where, at the age of eighteen, is, that the life of Zuinglius is little he obtained the situation of a teachknown; having been lost in the We have no leisure to follow blaze of another luminary, which, him through the steps of his educamoving in a more conspicuous or tion; or to notice any particulars, bit, and shedding a mightier influ- except that from the first he pres ence upon surrounding nations, bas ferred classical studies to the schoalmost exclusively occupied the lastic philosophy ; that, contrary to eye of every examiner. Now the the spirit of the age, he always bepresent work brings together more trayed a disinclination to bow to particulars in the history of the the authority of any single writer; Swiss reformer, than have been be that his change of masters was benef
cial to bin in this respect, as he cepts of the church. Their interpretation was induced to compare and balance had long been fixed, but Zwingle thought their respective theories; that, be it inexcusable in a man appointed to instruct ing consecrated to the altar, he, sion of others on points that he might him.
his fellow-Christians to rest upon the deci. under Divine grace, kept his eye sell examine. He therefore followed the fixed upon his high destination, and, only method to discover the true sense of an in bis wanderings with the poels author, which consists in interpreting an and orators of antiquity, clung to obscure passage by a similar and clearer the Bible
, as the great depository of one; and an unusual word by one more what is most sublime in composi- familiar; regard being had to time, place, tion and most admirable in senti- the intention of the writer, and a number of ment. Some account of the plan of other circumstances which modify and often biblical reading pursued by this change the signification of words. After eminent man, cannot but be inte- endeavouring io explain the text of the Goresting, and we shall give it in the spel by itselt, Zwingle also made himself words of the author, Let it be re
acquainted with the interpretations given by membered, that this picture of a of the church, who, having lived nearer
other theologians, especially by the fathers stodent is not that of a man in the the times of the apostles, must bave undernibeteenth century, taught by the stood their language better than the modern example of millions to search for doctors. It was in the writings of the fatruth in the channels of Scripture, thers that lie also studied the manners and hat of one who was, as it were, customs of the first Christians; followed scooping out a channel for himself; them through the persecutions of which of rather quitting the “cisterns” at they were the victims; observed the rapid which all the world were drawing progress of the rising church ; and admired for knowledge, and returning to
that astonishing revolution which by degrees those " fountains of living water”
elevated the new religion to the throne of which all had “ forsaken."
ibe Cæsars." pp. 14-16.
But Zuinglius did not limit himself • Zwingle had resided four years at Basil,
to works which were approved by when the borghers of Glaris, the chief town of the canton of that name, chose him for the church: he read also those of their pastor. He accepted this situation, Wickliffe and of John Huss. The všich brought him nearer to his family, result of such an examination might and repaired thither after receiving holy or be anticipated. The worship of ders
, which were conferred upon him by the images, of the relics of saints, of the bishop of Constance, in whose diocese the Virgin Mary, and of the host; and cution of Glaris was situaied. In order the unbounded authority of the priestworthily to acquit himself of the ministry in- bood; together with many other trusted to him, Zwingle thought that he cod in need of deeper and more extensive
errors of Popery, both in doctrine kearning than he already possessed. He ac
and practice, soon appeared to cordingly resolved to recommence bis theo
bim to have no foundation in Scriplagical studies after a plan that he had hina
ture. But such was his moderation, self traced out, and wbich was very different that he divulged his suspicions, for from that followed in the universities. An a time, only to a few, well qualified assiduous perusal of the New Testament either to resolve or to substantiate preceded his fresh researches. In order to them. The account given of his Fender himself more familiar with St. Paul's ministry while under these impreseşisiles, le copied the Greek text with his sions, is very strikingi aud characom hand, adding in the margin a multi- teristic of the man. tude of notes extracted from the fathers of the cbarch, as well as his own observations, “ Without directly attacking the abuses and tbis interesting manuscript still exists in authorised by the Roinishi church, lie cowthe public library of Zurich. The attention fined himsell in lois sermons to the doctrines of Zsingle was from this time directed to which he found clearly laid down in the the passages of Seripture cited in the canou Scriptures, and to the moral precepts to be of the mass, and to those which serve as a deduced from them. He took every opporbasis to the doginas and most essential pre- tunity of repeating to bis audience, thai in