תמונות בעמוד
PDF
ePub

con

croaching upon the usefulness of our suffer such unprofitable proceedings ; co-workers in the Lord's vineyard. but so it was. Mr. Richardson wrote Truly the harvest is great, but the to Dr. Bayley asking him very earnestly labourers are few. As Englishmen we to come down and reply to the minister. sometimes boast of the progress which Dr. Bayley at some inconvenience, arthis country has made in civilization ranged to comply, and was present at and education, and yet we are confronted the meeting after tea. The lecture was with the fact that there are multitudes, three hours long. Either the minister even at our very doors, perishing for thought it well to prepare the people lack of knowledge. Ignorance and its before the meeting, or he thought the companion, vice, are rampant in our whole composition too long for one dose, midst, and are more than a match for which indeed it was, or for three even. the gospel machinery at present in Which of these it was we know not, but motion. And why? Because the doc- he gave the first part, against the doctrine of faith alone as the cure for all trines, chiefly the week before, and interspiritual diseases las obtained such a larded it with hard names and heavy firm hold upon the minds of the people. condemnation. Swedenborg was a horrid Let us, as mernbers of the New Church, old heretic, and other harsh names, guard against this error, and seek to which great prejudice and little knowunite Will with Understanding, Love ledge have in such cases made and prowith Intelligence, and Charity with vided. The lecture Dr. Bayley heard Faith. Let us seek to be of that number consisted chiefly of portions of Swedenof whom it is written-" Blessed are borg's experience and information conthey that do His commandments, that cerning the other life. It was they may have right to the tree of life, tinued so long that half the congregation, and may enter in through the gates into which at first was crowded, went wearied the city.”

away.

As discussion had been refused, Dr. SPIRITED PROCEEDINGS AT SWANTON Bayley rose at the close and invited the A BBOT, NORFOLK.-In this parish, about people to attend the two following eventwelve miles from Norwich, the New ings to here the reply. He invited the Church doctrines were warmly received minister also, and stated he would have about four years ago.

Mr. Richardson, full liberty to propose either questions postmaster and grocer, a zealous friend or arguments at the close of each lecture. of all that is good, and a Methodist He added, for the comfort of the people, local preacher, met with Mr. Giles' that the reply would not take half the “Nature of Spirit,” and then the time that the attack had taken, simply "Brighton Lectures." These opened to because the minister had not understood him a new world of thought, and what the subjects upon which he had spoken, seemed to him so glorious he determined, and had gone round and round about as far as possible, his neighbours should them, and did not know what he was share. He got dozen after dozen of the about.

Brighton Lectures,” and found they Mr. Richardson had put up a booth were acceptable to others as well as to in front of his house, which would hold him. After some time he determined about three hundred people, and it was to build an addition to his house, and crowed two nights to hear the replies. use it for a preaching room. Into this As many were said to be outside as often more than one hundred people there were inside. The minister was crowd, and he has the best congregation there, and the second evening several in the parish.

brother ministers came to keep him in At the annual tea-party, held at the countenance. Dr. Bayley lectured about Methodist Chapel, one of the ministers an hour and a half each evening. He of the circuit resolved to deliver a showed that the doctrines of the New lecture on what he called the “Errors Church were the very truths of Scripture, and Delusions of Count Swedenborg.” rescued from the rubbish of the dark The parish and neighbourhood were ages. They were exactly as Scripture placarded about, and great excitement stated them. caused. It was strange taste to serve Thedoctrines of the Old Church-three up such a course at a tea-party, and Divine Persons, one God pacifiying anwonderful that the Wesleyans should other, Scripture to be understood natur

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

ally with no spiritual sense, the resur- were the means by which birds soar. rection of flesh and blood, and nobody True thoughts were the means by which having yet entered heaven or hell, or minds soar, and angels have true being able to enter until some unknown thoughts, and so have men.

Men are period called the last judgment—were said in Scripture to mount up with extravagances not in Scripture at all. wings like eagles, to run and not be The people evidently saw the force of weary, to walk and not faint. truth, and passed very warmly a vote of The meetings closed most unthusiastithanks. The minister was invited to cally, and Mr. Richardson believes he get up, but he declined.

will have to keep his tent up all the The second night Dr. Bayley took the summer. subject of the “ Future Life.

He began

Births. by stating that as a church declined

On September 2nd, at 9 Whalley from God it became Sadducean. It lost Range, Accrington, the wife of the Rev. all knowleilge of the spiritual world. Isaiah Tansley, of a son. The minister had often stated in his

On September 1st, at 72 Farringdon lecture that he could not understand Street, London, Mrs. Henry Higham, the spiritual world being about man, or of a daughter. people being men and women in the

Marriages. human form in the other life, or correspondences, or heaven being in the human Jerusalem School, Kearsley, by the Rev.

On the 23rd August, at the New form, or horses and other objects being P. Ramage, Mr. Arthur C. Gee, to seen in the other life. Of course, Dr. Evelina, eldest daughter of Robert Bayley said he did not understand Briercliffe, Esq. The parties being well them any more than Nicodemus under known and highly esteemed in the stood what the Lord said about being neighbourhood, the large building was born again. But he ought to under- crowded to excess to witness the intereststand them. Swedenborg would teach

ing ceremony. him to understand them if he would only learn. It was to restore knowledge Jerusalem Church, Accrington, by the

On Septeniber 13th, at the New to such as our friend that Sweden borg's Rev. R. Storry, Mr. Robert Angus spiritual sight was opened. Dr. Bayley Jackson, to Miss Martha Palmer. then dwelt upon each, and showed how the science of correspondence explained

Obituary. them, and evidently the people caught Departed this life, at Thorner, near the ideas, for they exclaimed sometimes, Leeds, on the 22nd of August, Mr. “It's plain enough, only he did not William Mawson, aged 73 years. Mr. know how to put it.” The minister Mawson had been through life an intellirose on the invitation at the end, and gent receiver of the doctrines of the excused and softenedl some portions of New Church, and an affectionate and what he had said, and added he did not exemplary member of the Society at go so far as some orthodox writers about Leeds. În this town he resided until bones coming flying through the air, and the infirmities of age led him to seek the the ministers sometimes speak loosely retirement of the village in which he about people going to heaven, when they has spent the last few years of his life, have not been judged, but he said he and whence he has taken his peaceful would not dwell further, as he was going departure for his final home. Mr. Mawto publish his lecture. There was one son was a man of quiet demeanour, thing he should like to know Dr. affectionate disposition, and exemplary Bayley's explanation of, and that was Christian character. The general esteem how angels could be of the same race as in which he was held led to his appointmen, when angels had wings and men ment as Leader of the Society when had not.

without minister. This office he filled Dr. Bayley complimented him on for many years. His piety and evident having made some advance on old ideas, sincerity made his services acceptable and exhorted him to go on and culti- and useful. In his family he was uni. vate his knowledge of correspondences. formly kind and self-forgetful. He has He did not understand the question borne with patience a painful illness, and about angels' wings, because he did not finished a useful life on earth by a peaceunderstand correspondences. Wings ful departure to a better home.

[blocks in formation]

can

We have seen that there is a real connection between the New Church and the Old, that this connection is founded upon the principle of REMAINS, and that to cut off the connection between the two, is to deny the existence of REMAINS. In this

case,

there be no relation between the New Church and the Old, simply because the Old Church has ceased to exist, and left not even a wreck behind. It is

upon

this principle that some appear to maintain, that the New Church is so entirely independent of the Old, that there is nothing in common between them; and that the New Church must regard the Old as having no existence—thus ignoring a fundamental principle of the New Church itself.

Notwithstanding this inconsistency, we have seen that in matters of religion every man must be left to the convictions of his own Conscience. But we are told in the Arcana, that inasmuch as the Conscience is formed by the truths of faith, so likewise those truths are not truths except in proportion as they have in them the good of charity which makes them truths; that they have Conscience who have received a new will from the Lord; and that as the good of charity makes the new will, so also it is the good of charity which makes Conscience. In this case, to leave a man to act in matters of

religion according to his own Conscience, is to leave him to act according to the good of charity; and this he will do according to that degree of genuine charity of which he is possessed ; in which case we must especially bear in mind the rule—"Judge not, that ye be not judged; for with whatsoever measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again.” It has indeed been affirmed in the Apocalypse Revealed, by certain spirits distinguished for their wisdom-“Some of us have lately been favoured with enlightenment from heaven; in which state we had a perception, that at this day there is no longer any Church throughout the Christian world, because there is no religion.” Undoubtedly, in a general sense, we admit this to be true: there may

be no Christian Church as such, but yet there may be Remains ; for if there were not, there would be no materials out of which a New Church could be formed; nor could it be true, that the Lord has always a Church

upon

earth somewhere or other, for that otherwise the human race must perish.

Now, if we admit that in a mind in which there is an absence of the good of charity, externally true doctrine becomes internally false; and that where the good of charity predominates, externally false doctrine is accepted as internally true, it is evident in this case, that there may

be instances in the Old Church in which a higher type of character may be presented than is to be found in particular cases in the New; as is known to those who are well acquainted with the state of Remains in the Old Church. The same rule is applicable not only in cases where there is an absence of the good of charity, but also in proportion to the degree of its presence. In the individual mind, true doctrine is true only in proportion to the presence of that good, whatever may be the external profession.

We are told, indeed, that provided a man be in the good of charity, he may be regenerated by any doctrine whatever. We must, however, bear in mind, that it is the good of charity which makes the Conscience; and that all doctrines which are opposed to the good of charity, and as such tend to destroy it, tend also equally to destroy the Conscience. This is the case with those who hold the extreme doctrine of Justification by Faith alone. Why should I know anything about evil?” says one; “for if I have faith evil does not condemn me; and why should I know anything about good, for good cannot save me? Salvation is of Faith alone in Christ; and that faith by which I secure my salvation has nothing to do with personal holiness.

1 Art. 675.

66

Christ has done all for me, so that not only I need not do anything, but if I would be saved, I must not attempt it."

Weary, working, burdened one,

Wherefore toil you so ?
Cease your doing : all was done

Long, long ago.
• Till to Jesus' work you cling

By a simple faith ;
Doing is a deadly thing,

Doing ends in death.

“Cast your deadly doing down

Down at Jesus' feet;
Stand in Him, in Him alone,

Gloriously complete."

It is in this way that, without any repentance, by a momentaneous act of faith, the believer all at once stands complete in Jesus : a sudden faith ensures a sudden imputation of the righteousness of Christ, without repentance or anything having anything to do with a man's life and conduct. Doctrine of this kind is even now rife in some parts of England; and as it tends to destroy Conscience, so also it tends to destroy every vestige of Remains.

Notwithstanding, however, the deadly nature of this doctrine, there are often Remains in those who teach it; and it is in virtue of these Remains that their teaching is made to be inconsistent, without their being aware of it. The following incident, for instance, is recorded as having taken place in Moody's Enquiry-Room :-“Do you mean to tell me," said the young lady, looking up in my face, “that I cannot be saved until I forgive her.”—“No, you can't; and if there be any others whom you hate, you must forgive them also.”—She paused for a moment, and then she said "I will go.”—Deadly, therefore, as the doctrine is to which we have referred, it is often neutralized by Remains; and serves to illustrate the true meaning of our Lord's statement, “If they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them."

We now proceed to show the relation of Remains, in their various degrees, to the Athanasian Creed.

This Creed was originally intended to be opposed to Arianism and Sabellianism. It is also appealed to in the present day, as a bulwark against the doctrines of Socinus. In all these respects its object we regard as good. “The Athanasian Creed," says Swedenborg," was per

Doctrine of the New Jerusalem concerning the Lord. art. 57, etc.

[ocr errors]
« הקודםהמשך »