« PreviousContinue »
SOLILOQUY OF A SERIOUS MINISTER:
(Concluded from last number.) What has been my manner of life and conversation among the people of my cbarge? Have I exhibited and maintained the character of a faithful and solicitous gospel shepherd ? Have I made it my object to follow my public instructions by private admouitions, in the spirit of love and meekness? Have "they who fear the Lord" been encouraged by my example to *** “ speak often one to another” on the "things which belong to their peace ?” In my friendly visits and intercourse among them, have I care fully avoided all“ foolish talking and jesting," and every kind of convere sation “ which is not convenient," or which tends to frivolity and dissi. pation of mind ? Has my “ speech been always with grace, seasoned with salt and “which is good to the use of edifying, that it might minister grace unto the hearers ?" Have I been solicitous to embrace every opportunity so to “ order my speech'' among them, as to instruct the ignorant, alarm the secure, reclaim the openly vicious, detect and undeceive the hypocrite and self-deceiver; to console the afflicted, comfort the feeble mind. ed, support the weak, and to raise the minds of all from earth, and direct their pursuits to heaven? In a word, have I so conducted, as to give striking evidence to my people, that, possessed of the “ one thing needful myself, my anxious desire has been, that they might possess the same rich and invaluable treasure ? O my soul! have I not been, often been a trifling visitor among my people, and encouraged by my own example, conversation, vain, frivolous, and uncongenial with the spirit and purity of the gospel ? Fearful of giving offence, have I not often neglected the pain. ki fu, but highly benevolent and important office of admonition and reproof? Fearful of disturbing their minds, or of producing disgust, have I not been greatly backward to converse with my people on subjects of experimental religion and practical godliness, and particularly with application to them. selves ? Feebly impressed myself with a sense of everlasting things, the worth of souls and my own awful responsibility, have I not too, too much thrown off that seriousness and weight of ministerial character, which, duly supported, might, and probably would have had a visible and happy influence on all around?
Thus have I traced myself, I hope with some degree of faithfulness and impartiality, through the most important parts of my christian ministry, and with the view and desire to discover to myself aid others, the special cause of the lamentable decline of experimental, serious, and practical rea ligion. Has not this cause been developed ? Other causes, indeed, have contributed to the sad and deplorable state of religion among us. But 0,1 my fathers and brethren! how much occasion have we, humbled in the dust, to exclaim 'Guilty! Guilty !" Nor will our christian bearers, it is presumed, wholly exculpate themselves. With us let them join in tracing toits cause the languor of religion--with us let them join in general lamentation and in deep humility before God--with us let them join in arousing froin a state of guilty slumber to do with all oor might, whatever our hands find to do, for the conversion of precious souls to God. Lord of compassion! I quicken us direct our steps-crown our enterprise with success. And may the blessings of multitudes, ready to perish, come upon us.
. FOLLY OF VANITY AND PRIDE. Alas! what have any of us to boast of? What dignity or consequence do thousands of gold and silver' confer upon us, unless our wealth be de
| MEDES & PERSIANS,
BY CHARLES ROLLIN,
J. BIOREN & T. L. PLOWMAN, PHILADELPHIA ; MUNROE
MOUTH ; AND THOMAS CLARK, PORTLAND. vi,
BOOK NINTH CONTINUED.
Sect. VII. The expedition of Artaxerxes against the Cadusians.
History of Damates the Carian:
. Sect. II. Commotions in Sicily and at Syracuse against Diony-