תמונות בעמוד


when applied to the source of moral or tender will. By a metonymy, exercises. We intend not to ex- heart is used for an affection or pasamine all the different senses in sion in many instances, which will which the term heart is used in the readily occur to the reflecting reader Bible, or in common language; a as he peruses his Bible. By a diffew only will be sufficient. Its li- ferent form of the figure, heart is teral and common meaning is, to sometimes used for the soul, or denote the muscular organ which mind, with all its faculties, which gives circulation to the blood; one instances are easily distinguished of the primary organs of animal by the careful reader. These suglife. It is scarcely necessary to gestions will be sufficient to show

that we have no reference to what we think is the true meaning this vital organ in our present dis- of the term heart in the scriptures, cussion: as physiologists we might and in mental philosophy. We rehave something to say of the mate- peat it, that it may not be misunderrial organ, but as mental philoso- stood or forgotten-heart is the faphers nothing. The term is also culty of feeling, or seat of affections used to denote the vital part, and and passions, in distinction from sometimes the inner or hidden part the faculties of knowledge and voof any thing: with these meanings lition. we have at present no concern. Our

The heart is a moral faculty, as only object now is, to remark on is evident from the scriptures, and some of the meanings of this term from the nature of the case. Jesus as applied to mind. It is here pro- Christ, who proved his divinity by per to say, that by far the greatest that perfection of the true God, number of the terms applied to searching the heart, declared that mind are borrowed from material from the heart proceeds every evil. things, or have their original and (Matt. xv. 18, 19.) The question, literal application to the properties what belongs to man of a moral naof matter. But while in this view ture, and why is it moral ? deserves words are taken from their original more full and particular consideraand literal meaning, and may be tion than we shall attempt to give said to be figuratively employed, it in this place. In some future common usage has so familiarized article we intend to give the result them to the ear and thoughts, that of a careful examination of this imwe scarcely think of any other than portant question. For the present the figurative import.

it is enough to say, that the heart Heart is one of the terms, though is a moral faculty, because it is the figurative in the above sense, as ap- seat of praise or blame, good or plied to mind, which has, from its evil, sin or holiness in man. We use, a proper meaning; and when shall not deny the depravity or perit is applied to the seat or source of version of the other faculties, or affections it is used properly. Thus their sanctification in the saint, but we read of a good heart, an evil we mean to say, that the scriptures heart, of sorrowful, joyous, hard, do represent the heart as the seat proud, tender, faint, and pure of that which is morally good or hearts. By these and many like evil in man. (Matt. xii. 34, 35.) uses of the term heart, are meant The affections are, therefore, more plainly, the seat of mental feeling; directly expressive of all moral but it would be manifestly impro- qualities than perception or voliper to substitute the name of any tion. other faculty in the places where The heart is the governing faheart is thus properly used. We culty of the mind, and its characnever speak of a sorrowful, or joy- ter determines the character of the ous understanding, nor of a hard man. Men perceive objects of a

physical and moral character, but with obligation. But to make this the mere perception does not pro- matter plain, let it be observed that duce any action, nor discover cha- all the faculties of understanding, racter, except the mere fact that heart and will, are necessary to conthey are intellectual beings. Good stitute man a moral, accountable men and bad men may perceive the agent. No man can be a responsible same objects—they may see the subject of moral government unless same evidences of God's power, he has a faculty of knowing his wisdom and goodness, in his works relations, a faculty of feeling the and providence, but they feel very influence of inducement, and a fadifferently affected in view of the culty of action—that is, he must be same truths. We can have no a perceptive, sensitive, voluntary doubt that holy angels and fallen agent. But after all, some one of spirits feel very differently in view these faculties must be more immeof the same developments of God's diately connected with the idea of plan. The temper of the heart, obligation than the other, and this therefore, gives character to men we think must be the heart. Take and angels. It is the feeling that another view of the facts in the case. governs the conduct. Holy angels It is moral agency alone that can act very differently from wicked fit a man for obligation. There angels; and wicked men act dif- must be an internal principle of acferently from good men, in their tion, which is itself a moral prinmoral relations, and that because ciple. Man has such a principle of they feel differently from each other. action, and that is the heart, which The reason is entirely obvious, alone can feel. Without this capatherefore, why the revelation of bility of feeling in man, there could God contains such special injunc. be no action. No motive would tions to keep the heart, and to direct influence him, nothing could induce its exercises towards God and ho him to seek one object or avoid liness. Its governing influence, another. The heart is the spring and being the source of character, of action, consequently that on account for the fervent appeals which obligation ultimately rests. made to men's hearts, in the scrip. Take one more view of the subject. tures of truth.

That, which distinguishes good beThe uses of this faculty have been ings from bad, must be of a moral already, in part, intimated; but we character, belong to the moral faare desirous to add a few thoughts culty, and correspond with, or vioon this suggestion, in the close of late responsibility. That faculty this article.

which renders man virtuous or viIn addition to the intimations al- cious, renders him capable of moral ready made, we say that one im- obligation; and the exercise of that portant use of the faculty is to ren- principle might be under moral reder men responsible agents. It is sponsibility. the beart alone, which feels a sense There is another use of this faof responsibleness; and without a culty which will show that man's faculty to feel a sense of obligation, moral obligation connects primarino obligation could bind man: he ly with the heart—it is to render could not be a subject of praise or him capable of happiness or miblame. Here it may, perhaps, be sery, susceptible of reward or pusaid by some, that men perceive nishment. Å responsible inan must their relations to law, and to God be liable to punishment if he viothe Lawgiver, that without under- late his obligation, otherwise to restanding, man could not be morally ward. But no reward or punishbound, and that understanding is, ment can be appreciated in prostherefore, the faculty connecting pect, or felt when present, without

a faculty of feeling; this brings us We close this article with a sinto the same result as before, the gle remark, obviously suggested by heart is the grand qualification for the foregoing examination. It is sustaining obligation.

this, a correct knowledge of the It is evident that the great de: heart, as a faculty of the mind, is of sign of this capacity is that minds vast importance in understanding may enjoy happiness, and that they and applying the holy scriptures. should feel obligation to seek their Every man who errs in his view of own and promote the happiness of this faculty, will be at fault in the others. There can be no doubt that interpretation of many parts of the this heart is capable of increasing Bible. If the heart mean a disdegrees of happiness or misery. tinct, permanent faculty, consistWe believe it will be eternally ex. ing of different propensities or appanding its capacity for enjoyment, titudes, then we shall understand if in this life it shall be prepared to and apply the Bible descriptions of enjoy the development of eternal its change and influence agreeably scenes; or if not prepared to de- to their philological import; but if light in those scenes, its capacity we understand it to mean exercises for misery will be for ever increas. only, we must have a new rule of ing. The everlasting increase of interpretation of many passages, knowledge will bring along with it and shall often find difficulty in an everlasting increase of pleasure their application. Illustrations of or pain. It is not at all wonderful, several principles and facts now therefore, that so much importance suggested, will be given hereafter. should be attached to the heart in the scriptures of truth; that God should look upon the heart to ascertain the character; should de- TAE PRESEN mand the heart as the primary faculty of obedience, and predicate

No. II. obligation and ultimate responsibility principally of its character and Agreeably to an intimation in operations. How elevated, with our last number, we are now to en. this capacity fitted for the enjoy. deavour to show how the majority ment of God, may man becoinei in the last Assembly came to be Bound to the throne of God for what it was. On this point, we ever, by a heart fitted for deriving have no hesitation in saying, geneenjoyment immediately from the rally, that it was the result of preperfections, glory and government concerted plan and effort. This of the only true God to know who has been freely admitted by some is eternal life! But how debased who helped to form the majority. and forlorn in wretchedness, with It was, indeed, openly avowed by this capacity unfitted for the enjoy. a member, on the floor of the house, ment of God, may man become that he had come to the Assembly Bound to existence by the hand of for the express purpose of using God, and to his dominion who made his influence, with others, for efhim, by an obligation which he per- fecting, if possible, two things.petually violates, who can estimate One was, to vindicate Mr. Barnes; the misery of his eternal curse! and the other, to change the Board These thoughts arise from the ca- of Missions, and put out of office pability of man's heart to feel, the Corresponding Secretary and without entering into an estimate General Agent of ihat Board. His of his moral character and relations, errand, without doubt, was the same any further than the principles of with that of many others; and we bis being necessarily imply them. think, that without any constrained

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or unnatural inference, it might which appeared in the last General afford a solution of the problem Assembly; and we shall cease to before us even if there were not wonder, if those who were elected known facts, as there certainly are, were more generally and punctualwhose indication is precisely the ly present in the Assembly, and at same.

its very opening, than those who In the winter previous to the felt little else than the ordinary meeting of the General Assembly, motives to attend. extra copies of the Philadelphian, There were, however, some other to the amount of a good many hun- circumstances relative to the elecdreds, containing a favourable state- tion of members to the last Asment of the case of Mr. Barnes, sembly, peculiarly favourable to and his own explanations and de- the ensuring of the majority which fence of the sermon which had led was actually obtained. In some to the proceedings against him in sections of the church, the flathe Presbytery of Philadelphia, had grantly unconstitutional practice, been sent gratuitously into almost heretofore noticed, had become every section of the Presbyterian considerably extensive-the pracchurch. Shortly after this occur- tice of sending forward to the rence, the Corresponding Secretary Assembly men commissioned as and General Agent of the Home ruling elders, who had never been Missionary Society, issued a series either ordained or elected as elders. of letters, published at Cincinnati, These, to a man, it is believed, assailing the character of the Cor. were found in the majority; their responding Secretary and General previous feelings, principles and Agent of the Assembly's Board of views, having fully disposed them Missions, and through him, impli- to place themselves on that side of cating deeply the proceedings and the house, on every important questhe published report of the Board tion. What their nuinber was is itselt. Strong excitement was unknown, but it doubtless formed doubtless produced and cherished an itern of some importance. Anby these means, in the minds of other considerable item was formthose friendly to the person, prin- ed by the missionaries and agents ciples, and cause of Mr. Barnes, of the Home Missionary Society. and to the measures, operations, Having no stated charges to leave, and plans, of the Home Missionary their attendance on the Assembly Society; and hostile to the deci was less inconvenient than would sions of the Presbytery of Phila- have been that of settled pastors; and delphia, and to all who favoured their readiness to co-operate in putthose decisions; and likewise to the ting down a rival Board,-a chief Board of Missions of the General object in view, as the declaration to Assembly, and especially to its Cor- which we have adverted demonresponding Secretary and General strates-could not be questioned. Agent. Thus, if we combine friend- In Presbyteries, therefore, in which ship to Mr. Barnes, love of the their known sentiments were apnew theology, partiality to the proved, they were commissioned to Home Missionary Society, hostility the Asseinbly, in far greater numto the Board of Missions, and spe- bers, it is believed, than on any cial resentment against its faithful former occasion; their attendance and efficient secretary, and consi. also was general and punctual, and der all these active principles as they voted in mass with the majority. put under a strong exciteinent The gentleman who became the we shall be at no loss to account Moderator of the Assembly, and for the exertions which were made the Corresponding Secretary and to secure that kind of a majority General Agent of the Home Mis

if we

sionary Society, there is good rea- sessions of the Assembly been geson to believe, had the chief agency nerally known or suspected before in marshalling the measures and the meeting, we are confident there the men, that gave character to the would not have been so many abAssembly. The former individual sences of the old school Presbytehad spent a part of the preceding rians, as was notoriously the case. autumn, and the whole of the win. Some absences there doubtless were ter, on a visit to the south; had on both sides, but they are believed travelled considerably, and had, to have been threefold as numerous are rightly informed, at

on the side of the old school, as on tended several judicatures of the that of the new. church in that section of our coun

We should feel ourselves inextry: and that he there used all his cusable for devoting to the foregoinfluence to insure the result which ing statement, so much space as was witnessed when the Assembly it occupies, if it did not serve, and convened, and that the Secretary if indeed it were not necessary, and agent of the Home Missionary to show what is the present state of Society did the same in the north the Presbyterian church; and if a and east, where his influence and better and more general knowledge operations were most extensive, of this state, were not, as we firmly none we suppose will deny or doubt. believe, essential to its safety, perThat the candidate for the Modera- haps to its existence. Well do we tor's chair, to whom every vote was

remember the time—and we have a to be given, had also been agreed melancholy pleasure in recollecton, was, if there were no other evi- ing it when there was no planning dence, so strongly indicated when or electioneering for commissioners the vote came to be taken, that we to the Assembly: when, in some believe the fact was questioned by Presbyteries going to the supreme no one.

judicatory of our church was a priThe preconcerted operations and vilege or a duty—and regarded arrangements which have now been more as the latter than the former noticed, were conducted with won- which was taken in rotation by the derful secrecy and address; for members: when there was no prewidely extensive as they necessa

concert whatever, on the subject: rily were, those whom they were to when all the inquiry was, who affect unfavourably, did not, we could go with the greatest conveknow, even suspect their existence. nience, or who were the ablest men They had themselves made some that the Presbytery could send: exertions to secure a return of such when the coming together in the members to the Assembly as they Assembly, was a universal meeting believed would favour their cause; of brother with brother, and the and they did not doubt that their social intercourse at such meetings opponeuts had done the same. But was of the most free and delightful that such an extended, active, and kind: when the theological views systematick combination had been of the members, if not perfectly entered into against them, was as harmonious, were so little at variperfectly unknown and unappre- ance as to produce no discord : hended by them, till it began to de- when the constitution of the church velope itself in the choice of a Mo- both as to doctrine and governderator, as if the thing had been in ment, was cordially approved, and itself an impossibility. In military made, in practice as well as in phrase, they had been completely out- name, the standard by which every generalled, and were taken perfect- thing was fairly tried; and when, Ty by surprise. Had the facts of course, the first manifestation of which became manifest during the heresy, was nipped in the bud.

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