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the City was framed was higher than the clouds: they therefore went up through the region of the air, sweetly talking as they went, being comforted, because they safely got over the river, and had such glorious companions to attend them.
The talk that they had with the shining ones was about the glory of the place; who told them that the beauty and glory of it was inexpressible. There, said they, is “Mount Zion, the heavenly Jerusalem, the innumerable company of angels, and the spirits of just men made perfect." You are going now, said they, to the paradise of God, wherein you shall see the tree of life, and eat of the never-fading fruits thereof: and when you come there, you shall have white robes given you, and your walk and talk shall be every day with the King, even all the days of eternity. There you shall not see again such things as you saw when you were in the lower region upon the earth; to wit, sorrow, sickness, affliction, and death }; "for the former things are passed away." You are going now to Abraham, to Isaac, and Jacob, and to the prophets, men that God hath taken away from the evil to come, and that are now "resting upon their beds, each one walking in his righteousness." The men then asked, What must we do in the holy place? To whom it was answered, You must there receive the comfort of all your toil, and have joy for all your sorrow; you must reap what you have sown, even the fruit of all your prayers and tears, and sufferings for the King by the way. In that place you must wear crowns of gold, and enjoy the perpetual sight and vision of the Holy One; for "there you shall see him as he is." There also you shall serve him continually with praise, with shouting, and thanksgiving, whom you desired to serve in the world, though with much difficulty, because of the infirmity of your flesh. There your eyes shall be delighted with seeing, and your ears with hearing the pleasant voice of the Mighty One. Pilgrim's Progress.
SIR WILLIAM TEMPLE, an eminent English statesman and diplomatist, born 1628, died 1699, was the author of
tremely negligent, and even infected with foreign idioms, is agreeable and interesting. That mixture of vanity which appears in his works is rather a recommendation to them. By means of it we author, full of honour and humanity, and fancy enter into acquaintance with the character of the
that we are engaged, not in the perusal of a book, but in conversation with a companion."-HUME: Hist. of Eng., ch. lxxi.
"Sir William Temple was the first writer who gave cadence to English prose. Before his time they were careless of arrangement, and did not mind whether a sentence ended with an important word or an insignificant word, or with what part of speech it was concluded."-DR. JOHNSON, in Boswell, ch. lxiii.
Dr. Johnson should have said "one of the first."
EXTRACT OF A LETTER ADDRESSED TO THE COUNTESS OF ESSEX, IN 1674, AFTER THE DEATH OF HER ONLY DAUGHTER.
I know no duty in religion more generally agreed on, nor more justly required by God Almighty, than a perfect submission to his will in all things; nor do I think any disposition of mind can either please him more, or becomes us better, than that of being satisfied with all he gives, and contented with all he takes away.
None, I am sure, can be of more honour to God, nor of more ease to ourselves. For if we consider him as our Maker, we cannot contend with him; if as our Father, we ought not to distrust him; so that we may be confident whatever he does is intended for good; and whatever happens that we interpret otherwise, yet we can get nothing by repining, nor save anything by resisting.
But if it were fit for us to reason with God Almighty, and your ladyship's loss were acknowledged as great as it could have been to any one, yet, I doubt, you would have but ill grace to complain at the rate you have done, or rather as you do; for the first emotions or passions may be pardoned; it is only the continuance of them which makes thein inexcusable.
In this world, madam, there is nothing perfectly good; and whatever is called so, is but either comparatively with other things of its kind, or else with the evil that is mingled in its composition; so he is a good man who is better than men commonly are, or in whom the good qualities are more than the bad; so, in the course of life, his con
a number of political, historical, biographi-dition is esteemed good, which is better than cal, poetical, and other works, of which a collective edition was published, Lond., 1720, 2 vols. fol.; last edition, 1814, 4 vols. 8vo. "Of all the considerable writers of this age, Sir
William Temple is almost the only one that kept himself altogether unpolluted by that inundation of vice and licentiousness which overwhelmed the nation. The style of this author, although ex
that of most other men, or in which the good circumstances are more than the evil. By this measure, I doubt, madam, your complaints ought to be turned into acknowledgments, and your friends would have cause to rejoice rather than to condole with you. When your ladyship has fairly considered how God Almighty has dealt with
you in what he has given, you may be left to judge yourself how you have dealt with him in your complaints for what he has taken away. If you look about you, and consider other lives as well as your own, and what your lot is, in comparison with those that have been drawn in the circle of your knowledge, if you think how few are born with honour, how many die without name or children, how little beauty we see, how few friends we hear of, how much poverty, and how many diseases there are in the world, you will fall down upon your knees, and instead of repining at one affliction, will admire so many blessings as you have received at the hands of God. . . . But, madam, though religion were no party in your case, and for so violent and injurious a grief you had nothing to answer to God, but only to the world and yourself, yet I very much doubt how you would be acquitted. We bring into the world with us a poor, needy, uncertain life; short at the longest, and unquiet at the best. All the imaginations of the witty and the wise have been perpetually busied to find out the ways to revive it with pleasures, or to relieve it with diversions; to compose it with ease, and settle it with safety. To these ends have been employed the institutions of lawyers, the reasonings of philosophers, the inventions of poets, the pains of labouring, and the extravagances of voluptuous men. All the world is perpetually at work that our poor mortal lives may pass the easier and happier for that little time we possess them, or else end the better when we lose them. On this account riches and honour are coveted, friendship and love pursued, and the virtues themselves admired in the world. Now, madam, is it not to bid defiance to all mankind, to condemn their universal opinions and designs, if, instead of passing your life as well and easily, you resolve to pass it as ill and as miserably as you can? You grow insensible to the conveniences of riches, the delights of honour and praise, the charms of kindness or friendship; nay, to the observance or applause of virtues themselves; for who can you expect, in these excesses of passions, will allow that you show either temperance or fortitude, either prudence or justice?
And as for your friends, I suppose you reckon upon losing their kindness, when you have sufficiently convinced them they can never hope for any of yours, since you have left none for yourself, or anything else.
ON THE RIGHT OF PRIVATE JUDGMENT IN RELIGION.
Whosoever designs the change of religion in a country or government, by any other
means than that of a general conversion of the people, or the greatest part of them, designs all the mischiefs to a nation that use to usher in, or attend the two greatest distempers of a state, civil war or tyranny; which are violence, oppression, cruelty, rapine, intemperance, injustice; and, in short, the miserable effusion of human blood, and the confusion of all laws, orders, and virtues among men.
Such consequences as these, I doubt, are something more than the disputed opinions of any man, or any particular assembly of men, can be worth; since the great and general end of all religion, next to men's happiness hereafter, is their happiness here; as appears by the commandments of God being the best and greatest moral and civil, as well as divine precepts, that have been given to a nation; and by the rewards proposed to the piety of the Jews, throughout the Old Testament, which were the blessings of this life, as health, length of age, number of children, plenty, peace, or victory.
Now, the way to our future happiness has been perpetually disputed throughout the world, and must be left at last to the impressions made upon every man's belief and conscience, either by natural or supernatural arguments and means; which impressions men may disguise or dissemble, but no man can resist. For belief is no more in a man's power than his stature or his feature; and he that tells me I must change my opinion for his, because 'tis the truer and the better, without other arguments that have to me the force of conviction, may as well tell me I must change my gray eyes for others like his that are black, because these are lovelier or more in esteem. He that tells me I must inform myself, has reason if I do it not; but if I endeavour it all that I can, and perhaps more than ever he did, and yet still differ from him; and he that, it may be, is idle, will have me study on, and inform myself better, and so to the end of my life, then I easily understand what he means by informing, which is, in short, that I must do it till I come to be of his opinion.
If he that, perhaps, pursues his pleasures or interests as much or more than I do, and allows me to have as good sense as he has in all other matters, tells me I should be of his opinion but that passion or interest blinds me; unless he can convince me how or where this lies, he is but where he was; only pretends to know me better than I do myself, who cannot imagine why I should not have as much care of my soul as he has of his.
A man that tells me my opinions are absurd or ridiculous, impertinent or unreasonable, because they differ from his, seems to
intend a quarrel instead of a dispute, and calls me fool or madman, with a little more circumstance; though, perhaps, I for pass one as well in my senses as he, as pertinent in talk, and as prudent in life: yet these are the common civilities in religious argument, of sufficient and conceited men, who talk much of right reason, and mean always their own, and make their private imagination the measure of general truth. such language determines all between us, and the dispute comes to end in three words at last, which it might have as well have ended in at first, that he is in the right, and I am in the wrong.
The other great end of religion, which is our happiness here, has been generally agreed on by all mankind, as appears in the records of all their laws, as well as their religions, which come to be established by the concurrence of men's customs and opinions; though in the latter that concurrence may have been produced by divine impressions or inspirations. For all agree in teaching and commanding, in planting and improving, not only those moral virtues which conduce to the felicity and tranquillity of every private man's life, but also those manners and dispositions that tend to the peace, order, and safety of all civil societies and governments among men. Nor could I ever understand how those who call themselves, and the world usually calls, religious men, come to put so great weight upon those points of belief which men never have agreed in, and so little upon those of virtue and morality, in which they have hardly ever disagreed. Nor why a state should venture the subversion of their peace, and their order, which are certain goods, and so universally esteemed, for the propagation of uncertain or contested opinions.
ISAAC BARROW, D.D., an eminent mathematician and divine, the tutor of Sir Isaac Newton, born in London 1630, died 1677, was the author of some of the best sermons in the English language. The great Earl of Chatham read Barrow's sermons till he could recite many of them memoriter; and he recommended his son, William Pitt, to study them deeply. Daniel Webster, also, strove to profit by their perusal. New editions of his Theological Works were published, Oxford, 1818, 6 vols. 8vo, also 1830, 8 vols. 8vo; edited by Rev. T. S. Hughes, 7 vols. 8vo, and by Rev. James Hamilton, Edin., 1842, 3 vols. 8vo; New York, 1845, 3 vols. 8vo.
"The sermons of Barrow display a strength of mind, a comprehensiveness and fertility, which
have rarely been equalled. No better proof can be given than his eight sermons on the government of the tongue; copious and exhaustive,
without tautology or superfluous declamation, they Aristotle are in ethical philosophy, with more of are in moral preaching what the best parts of development and more extensive observation. His quotations from ancient philosophers, though not so numerous as in Taylor, are equally unconits richness and occasional vivacity, we may cengenial to our ears. In his style, notwithstanding
language is more formal and antiquated than of sure a redundancy and excess of apposition: his his age; and he abounds too much in uncommon words of Latin derivation, frequently such as appear to have no authority but his own."-HALLAM: Lit. Hist. of Europe.
THE EXCELLENCY OF THE CHRISTIAN RE
Another peculiar excellency of our re ligion is, that it prescribes an accurate rule of life, most agreeable to reason and to our nature, most conducive to our welfare and content, tending to procure each man's private good, and to promote the public benefit of all, by the strict observance whereof we bring our human nature to a resemblance of the divine; and we shall also thereby obtain God's favour, oblige and benefit men, and procure to ourselves the conveniences of a sober life, and the pleasure of a good conscience. For if we examine the precepts which respect our duty to God, what can be more just, pleasant, or beneficial to us than are those duties of piety which our religion enjoins? What is more fit and reasonable than that we should most highly esteem and honour him who is most excellent? that we should bear the sincerest affection for him who is perfect goodness himself, and most beneficial to us? that we should have the most awful dread of him that is infinitely powerful, holy, and just? that we should be very grateful to him from whom we received our being, with all the comforts and conveniences of it? that we should entirely trust and hope in him who can and will do whatever we may in reason expect from his goodness, nor can he ever fail to perform his promises? that we should render all due obedience to him whose children, servants, and subjects we are? Can there be a higher privilege than to have liberty of access to him who will favourably hear, and is fully able to supply
our wants? Can we desire to receive bene
fits on easier terms than the asking for them? Can a more gentle satisfaction for our offences be required than confessing of them, repentance, and strong resolutions to amend them? The practice of such a piety, of a service so reasonable, cannot but be of vast advantage to us, as it procures peace of conscience, a comfortable hope, a freedom
from all terrors and scruples of mind, from all tormenting cares and anxieties.
And if we consider the precepts by which our religion regulates our carriage and behaviour towards our neighbours and brethren, what can be imagined so good and useful as those which the gospel affords? It enjoins us sincerely and tenderly to love one another; earnestly to desire and delight in each other's good; heartily to sympathize with all the evils and sorrows of our brethren, readily affording them all the help and comfort we are able; willingly to part with our substance, ease, and pleasure for their benefit and relief; not confining this our charity to particular friends and relations, but, in conformity to the boundless goodness of Almighty God, extending it to all. It requires us mutually to bear with one another's infirmities, mildly to resent and freely remit all injuries; retaining no grudge, nor executing no revenge, but requiting our enemies with good wishes and good deeds. It commands us to be quiet in our stations, diligent in our callings, true in our words, upright in our dealings, observant of our relations, obedient and respectful to our superiors, meek and gentle to our inferiors, modest and lowly, ingenuous and condescending in our conversation, candid in our censures, and innocent, inoffensive, and obliging in our behaviour towards all persons. It enjoins us to root out of our hearts all envy and malice, all pride and haughtiness; to restrain our tongues from all slander, detraction, reviling, bitter and harsh language; not to injure, hurt, or needlessly trouble our neighbour. It engages us to prefer the public good before our own opinion, humour, advantage, or convenience. And would men observe and practise what this excellent doctrine teaches, how sociable, secure, and pleasant a life we might lead! what a paradise would this world then become, in comparison to what it now is!
DEFINITION OF WIT.
First it may be demanded what the thing is we speak of, or what this facetiousness doth import? To which question I might reply as Democritus did to him that asked him the definition of a man: "Tis that which we all see and know." Any one better apprehends what it is by acquaintance than I can inform him by description. It is indeed a thing so versatile and multiform, appearing in so many shapes, so many postures, so many garbs, so variously apprehended by several eyes and judgments, that it seemeth no less hard to settle a clear and certain notion thereof, than to make a por
trait of Proteus, or to define the figure of the fleeting air. Sometimes it lieth in pat allusion to a known story, or in seasonable application of a trivial saying, or in forging an apposite tale: sometimes it playeth in words and phrases, taking advantage from the ambiguity of their sense, or the affinity of their sound. Sometimes it is wrapped in a dress of humorous expression: sometimes it lurketh under an odd similitude: sometimes it is lodged in a sly question, in a smart answer, in a quirkish reason, in a shrewd intimation, in cunningly diverting or cleverly retorting an objection: sometimes it is couched in a bold scheme of speech, in a tart irony, in a lusty hyperbole, in a startling metaphor, in a plausible reconciling of contradictions, or in acute nonsense: sometimes an affected simplicity, sometimes a presumptuous bluntness, giveth it being: sometimes it riseth only from a lucky hitting upon what is strange: sometimes from a crafty wresting obvious matter to the purpose: often it consists in one knows not what, and springeth up one can hardly tell how. Its ways are unaccountable and inexplicable, being answerable to the numberless rovings of fancy and windings of language.
It is, in short, a manner of speaking out of the simple and plain way (such as reason teacheth and proveth things by), which by a pretty surprising uncouthness in conceit or expression doth affect and amuse the fancy, stirring in it some wonder, and breeding some delight thereto. It raiseth admiration, as signifying a nimble sagacity of apprehension, a special felicity of invention, a vivacity of spirit and reach of wit more than vulgar. It seemeth to argue a rare quickness of parts, that one can fetch in remote conceits applicable; a notable skill, that he can dexterously accommodate them to the purpose before him; together with a lively briskness of humour, not apt to damp those sportful flashes of imagination. Whence in Aristotle such persons are termed epidexioi, dexterous men; and eutropoi, men of facile or versatile manners, who can easily turn themselves to all things, or turn all things to themselves. It also procureth delight by gratifying curiosity with its rareness or semblance of difficulty: as monsters, not for their beauty, but their rarity; as juggling tricks, not for their use, but their abstruseness, are beheld with pleasure, by diverting the mind from its road of serious thoughts; by instilling gaiety and airiness of spirit; by provoking to such dispositions of spirit in way of emulation or complaisance; and by seasoning matters, otherwise distasteful or insipid, with an unusual and thence grateful tang.
ON HONOUR TO GOD.
honour, if he use his own credit as an instrument of bringing credit to goodness, thereby adorning and illustrating piety, he by so doing doth eminently practise this duty.
JOHN TILLOTSON, D.D.,
born 1630, Archbishop of Canterbury 1691, died 1694, was very famous as a preacher, and his sermons retained their popularity long after his death.
God is honoured by a willing and careful practice of all piety and virtue for conscience' sake, or an avowed obedience to his holy will. This is the most natural expression of our reverence towards him, and the most effectual way of promoting the same in others. A subject cannot better demonstrate the reverence he bears towards his prince than by (with a cheerful diligence) observing his laws; for by so doing he declares that he acknowledgeth the authority and revereth the majesty which enacted "He was not only the best preacher of the age, them; that he approves the wisdom which but seemed to have brought preaching to perfecdevised them, and the goodness which de- tion: his sermons were so well heard and liked, signed them for public benefit; that he and so much read, that all the nation proposed dreads his prince's power, which can main-him as a pattern, and studied to copy after him." tain them, and his justice, which will vindi-BISHOP BURNET: Hist. of Own Times, ed. 1833, cate them; that he relies upon his fidelity "The sermons of Tillotson were for half a cenin making good what of protection or of tury more read than any in our language. They recompense he propounds to the observers are now bought almost as waste paper, and hardly of them. No less pregnant a signification read at all. Such is the fickleness of religious of our reverence towards God do we yield taste, as abundantly numerous instances would in our gladly and strictly obeying his laws, prove. Tillotson is reckoned verbose and languid. thereby evidencing our submission to God's He has not the former defect in nearly so great a sovereign authority, our esteem of his wis-degree as some of his eminent predecessors; but there is certainly little vigour or vivacity in his dom and goodness, our awful regard to his style. Tillotson is always of a tolerant and power and justice, our confidence in him, and catholic spirit, enforcing right actions rather than dependence upon his word. The goodliness orthodox opinions, and obnoxious, for that and to the sight, the pleasantness to the taste, other reasons, to all the bigots of his own age."— which is ever perceptible in those fruits which HALLAM: Lit. Hist. of Europe, 4th ed., 1854, iii. 297. genuine piety beareth, the beauty men see in a calm mind and a sober conversation, the sweetness they taste from works of justice and charity, will certainly produce veneration to the doctrine that teacheth such things, and to the authority which enjoins them. We shall especially honour God by discharging faithfully those offices which God hath entrusted us with; by improving diligently those talents which God hath committed to us; by using carefully those means and opportunities which God hath vouchsafed us of doing him service and promoting his glory. Thus, he to whom God hath given wealth, if he expend it, not to the nourishment of pride and luxury, not only to the gratifying his own pleasure or humour, but to the furtherance of God's honour, or to the succour of his indigent neighbour, in any pious or charitable way, he doth thereby in a special manner 'honour God. He also on whom God hath bestowed wit and parts, if he employ them not so much in contriving to advance his own petty interests, or in procuring vain applause to himself, as in advantageously setting forth God's praise, handsomely recommending goodness, dexterously engaging men in ways of virtue, he doth thereby remarkably honour God. He likewise that hath honour conferred upon him if he subordinate it to God's
ADVANTAGES OF TRUTH AND SINCERITY.
Truth and reality have all the advantages of appearance and many more. If the show of anything be good for anything, I am sure sincerity is better: for why does any man dissemble, or seem to be that which he is not, but because he thinks it good to have such a quality as he pretends to? for to counterfeit and dissemble is to put on the appearance of some real excellency. Now, the best way in the world for a man to seem to be anything, is really to be what he would seem to be. Besides that, it is many times. as troublesome to make good the pretence of a good quality as to have it; and if a man have it not, it is ten to one but he is discovered to want, and then all his pains and labour to seem to have it are lost. There is something unnatural in painting, which a skilful eye will easily discern from native beauty and complexion.
It is hard to personate and act a part long; for where truth is not at the bottom, nature will always be endeavouring to return, and will peep out and betray herself one time or other. Therefore, if any man think it convenient to seem good, let him be so indeed, and then his goodness will appear to everybody's satisfaction: so that, upon all accounts,