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display of thy glory upon earth. “I have declared unto them thy name, and I will declare it,” yet more perfectly, John xvii. From these passages it evidently appears, that the faith of the Son can never possibly take away from that profound veneration which is due to the Father. And what is here observed, relative to the faith of the Son, is no less true with regard to the faith of the Holy Spirit. For, if under the dispensation of Jesus, we learn to address our Father, who is in heaven," with a degree of humble confidence, it is only under the dispensation of the Spirit that we are enabled to make those addresses with all that filial reverence and that lively fervour which the Gospel requires. This “ Spirit of adoption,” by witnessing “ with our spirit that we are the children of God,” Rom. viii, 15, 16, assists us to bow before our celestial Parent with that ineffable veneration and love which are due to the Su. preme Being. If philosophers would duly reflect upon these important truths, they would no longer tremble under the vain apprehension of becoming idolaters and tri-theists, by admitting the doctrines of the Gospel. On the contrary, we might indulge a hope that these proud reasoners would one day be seen, in company with humble believers, approaching the God of their fathers, through the intercession of the Son, and with the energy of the Holy Spirit ; crying out with St. Paul, “There is one God, and one Mediator between God and man, the man Christ Jesus,” 1 Tim. ii, 5 :-“ and through him we have access, by one Spirit, unto the Father,” Eph. ii, 18.

There is another class of worshippers who are zealous for the dispensation of the Son, and who, wholly taken up with the “Word manifested in the flesh,"imagine that his dispensation is rendered contemptible, if it be represented merely as the commencement of Christianity, while the perfection of the Gospel is declared to consist in the dispensation of the Holy Spirit. To the consideration of such, we would propose the following expression of St. Paul: “Henceforth know we no man after the flesh : yea, though we have known Christ after the flesh, yet henceforth know we him no more," after this manner, 2 Cor. v, 16. And though our Lord is acknowledged to have spoken on this wise, “Whoso eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, hath eternal life; and I will raise him up at the last day : for my flesh is meat indeed, and my blood is drink indeed :" yet it must likewise be confessed that he immediately added, “ It is the Spirit that quickeneth ; the flesh profiteth nothing," John vi, 54, 63.

The following observations, it is hoped, will entirely dissipate the fears of these pious persons :-“When the Spirit of truth is come,” saith our Lord, “ he will guide you into all truth ;” and especially into those truths which respect faith toward me, and repentance toward my

Father. “ He shall glorify me; for he shall receive of mine, and shall show unto you” the merits of my righteousness, the efficacy of my death, and the power of my Gospel, John xvi, 13, 14. “ The Father shall give you another Comforter, which ye” already know in part; “ for he dwelleth with you,” even now in my bodily presence, “ but hereafter he shall be in you,” when I shall have baptized you with the Holy Ghost sent down from heaven. “I will not leave you comfortless. I will come unto you. The world seeth me no more; but ye shall see me,” in the effects of my indwelling power; and “hecause I live, ye shall live also, At

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that day ye shall know that I am in my Father, and ye in me, and I [by my Spirit] in you,” John xiv, 16, 23. This spiritual abode of Christ in the souls of his people, is the most glorious mystery of the Gospel : and “if any man have not the Spirit of Christ,” Rom. viii, 9, he is, at best, either a disciple of Moses or of John the Baptist: he is not in a spiritual, but in a carnal state.

“I live, yet not I, but Christ liveth in me," Gal. ii, 20. « Christ is our life,” Col. iii, 4. “ The mystery which hath been hid from ages, is Christ in you the hope of glory,” Col. i, 26, 27. “My little children, of whom I travail in birth, until Christ be formed in you,” Gal. iv, 19. These, with a thousand other Scriptural expressions, must be utterly incomprehensible to those who, resting contented with a literal knowledge of the incarnate Word, admit not the internal manifestation of Christ, by his Spirit of revelation, wisdom, and power. “The deep things of God are revealed unto us by his Spirit,” i Cor. ii, 10; and, without this Spirit, we must continue strangers to the most exalted truths of the Gospel, and be cut off from the purest springs of religious consolation. “ This is he,” saith St. John, “that came by water and blood, even Jesus Christ ; not by water only, but by water and blood. And it is the Spirit that beareth witness, because the Spirit is truth," 1 John v, 6. As though the apostle should say, “ Christ, indeed, in the first part of his ministry, proclaimed that repentance toward God, which his own disciples, as well as John the Baptist, were accustomed to seal with a baptism of water. And to this sacred ceremony he himself condescendingly submitted. But after this he proceeded farther, when, as a visible Saviour, he sealed his own dispensation of grace with a baptism of blood upon the cross. Moreover, it is the Spirit that gives testimony to the unsearchable truths of the Gospel, by his still more excellent baptism; deepening our repentance toward God, and adding a full assurance, Heb. x, 22, to our faith in Jesus Christ. Let no one then suspect that the manifestation of the Spirit must necessarily obscure the glory of the Son ; especially since it is expressly declared, “that no man can say that Jesus is the Lord, but by the Holy Ghost,” i Cor, xii, 3.

Before we close this section, we have to lament that this important part of the Gospel is so rarely published among professing Christians. The greater part of the clergy are to be ranked with the most violent opposers of spiritual religion. They insult its followers, they condemn its advocates unheard, and presumptuously “speak evil of these things which they know not,” Jude 10. As there was a time in which the Jewish Church overlooked the most important promise under the dispensation of the Father; so it was intimated that a time would come, in which the Christian Church, sunk into a state of listlessness and incredulity, should neglect the grand promise under the dispensation of the Son. “When the Son of man cometh,” saith our Lord, “shall he find faith on the earth ?” Luke xviii, 8. He will find little indeed, if we may either rely upon our own observations, or give credit to the most solmon assertions of a predicting apostle, 2 Tim. iii, 1, 5.

All our ecclesiastics, however, are not of this description. Among the thousands of this sacred order, we find many who are possessed of godly fear, Scriptural faith, and Christian charity. These pious evangelists are anxious for the salvation of those committed to their charge.

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They labour to spread the kingdom of God among men, though they have never experienced that kingdom according to the fulness of the promise. And though they are unacquainted with the abundant pleni. tude of the Gospel, yet they cease not to publish that Gospel abroad with affection and zeal. They preach the cross of Christ ; but they proclaim not the spiritual coming of a risen Saviour. As their careless brethren refuse to publish the coming of the Spirit, through infidelity and prejudice, so these upright ministers neglect to preach it, through uncertainty and irresolution. If they even entertain a just opinion of the doctrine for which we plead, yet they are restrained from speaking frequently and freely upon the subject, because as many false Chris. tians have rendered the dispensation of the Son contemptible in the eyes of Deists; so many vainly-inspired zealots have caused the dispensation of the Spirit to appear ridiculous before sober-minded Christians. But, notwithstanding the reproach which many fanatics of various sects have brought upon this sublime part of the Gospel, by mingling with it the reveries of a heated imagination, yet it will constantly be regarded, by every well-instructed Christian, as the quintessence of our holy religion.

There appears little probability that this neglected doctrine will be either universally received or preached in our degenerate day. But as truth has never been left entirely destitute of witnesses, and as the generality of ministers have still courage enough to maintain, before an unbelieving world, the dispensation of the Son; we may reasonably hope that they will continue to mention the dispensation of the Spirit, at least, on every commemoration of the pentecostal glory. By this mean we may preserve among us a precious spark of sacred fire, till our returning Lord, bursting through the clouds of incredulity, shall kindle the spark into an everlasting flame. In that day the idle pretensions of enthusiasts shall no more influence believers to reject the Holy Spirit, than the vain pretensions of those false Christs, who formerly appeared among the Jews, could influence the faithful to reject their only Lord and Saviour. The dispensation of the Spirit shall then appear as glori. ous to the eyes of admiring Christians, as the dispensation of the Son once appeared to ravished Simeon: and every apostolic pastor shall conduct his flock from the dispensation of the Father, through that of the Son, to that of the Holy Spirit, in as rapid a manner as St. Peter is reported to have done in his first discourse.






Preliminary observations. SOME divines, almost wholly occupied with the doctrines of the Gospel, are not sufficiently careful to insist upon morality; while philosophers, for the most part, as wholly taken up with morality, treat the doctrines of the Gospel with neglect and disdain. It is to reconcile, if possible, these two mistaken classes of men, that a few observations are here presented upon the importance of such doctrines and their imme. diate connection with morality.

Morality is the science which regulates our manners, by teaching us to know and to follow justice, rendering to every one their due, love, honour, obedience, tribute, &c. The whole of this morality is included in those maxims of natural and revealed religion : “Whatever ye would that men should do unto you, do ye even so unto them,” Matt. vii, 12. “Render unto Cesar the things which are Cesar's; and unto God, the things which are God's,” Matt. xxii, 21. Hence it follows, that pure morality must maintain some form of Divine worship.

Some moralists, it is true, imagine it possible to be strictly just, without making any profession of piety. But if justice consists in doing that to others which we desire may be done to ourselves, it is clear, that every man who honours not the Supreme Being must be unjust, as well as impious : since, if we are parents or benefactors, we manifest so deep a sensibility of the injustice of our children or dependents, when they repay our kindness with insolence and ingratitude.

Doctrines are, in general, precepts; but by doctrines are here par. ticularly understood, those instructions which Christ and his apostles have given respecting the different relations in which we stand to God and to each other, together with the various duties consequent upon such relations.

Such instructions, as are transmitted from generation to generation, under the name of maxims or doctrines, whether they be true or false, have a prodigious effect upon the conduct of those who admit them. In

the ancient world, how many hapless infants have been sacrificed among the Greeks and Romans to that barbarous maxim, that fathers have the right of life and death over their new-born children. In the modern world, how vast a number of unborn infants, and how many fanciful heroes are falling every year unfortunate victims to those maxims of false honour. It is better to destroy the fruit of an illicit love, or to plunge a sword into the bosom of a friend, than to live without that which constitutes the honour of the sexes! Overturn these maxims of a false point of honour, and you destroy the principles upon which a thousand impious actions are committed.

Mankind can no more divest themselves of all prepossession in favour of general maxims, than they can lose sight of determining motives. The Atheist and the infidel have their particular doctrines, as well as the just man and the Christian. The inconsistency of some philosophers, in this respect, is here worthy to be noted, who begin their discourses by decrying maxims in general, and conclude them by setting forth and maintaining the most dangerous doctrines. “The road to permanent happiness," say they,“ is both convenient and spacious. The Almighty pays but little regard to our actions, and has endued us with passions for the very purpose of gratifying them.” They insinuate, that if a man is sufficiently rich to entertain a number of women, he may innocently enjoy whatever pleasure their society can afford him ; and that, when he has no longer any relish for life, he may as innocently blow out his brains. Such are the doctrines, and such is the morality, which many ill-instructed professors are preaching among us at this day; giving ample testimony that no men are more ready to set up for dogmatists than those who reject the doctrines of the Gospel,


CHAPTER I. Philosophers, so called, exalt themselves without reason against the doc

trines of the Gospel As those who affect exterior acts of devotion are not always possessed of the most solid piety, so they who are foremost to magnify philosophy are not always to be regarded as the wisest of mankind. It must, how.' ever, be confessed, that many Christians have afforded philosophers too just a subject of scandal, by continually opposing faith to reason : though, in order to be possessed of the richest Christian grace, it were necessary to renounce that noble faculty which chiefly distinguishes us from the brute creation. Like the great apostle, we may rationally oppose faith to sense; but we can never, without the highest indiscretion, oppose it to reason. We should even be cautious of saying, with M. de Voltaire and St. Louis, “Take heed how you follow the guidance of your weak reason. The reason of man is acknowledged to be weak, when compared with the intelligence of superior beings. But whatever its weakness may be, it becomes us with gratitude to follow it as our guide ; since, in a gloomy night, it is better to profit from the smallest taper that can be procured, than obstinately to shut our eyes and walk

* A ta foible raison, garde toi de rendre.

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