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with their practical tendencies. The doctrine of the final perseverance of Christ's people, and the experimental assurance of faith, are introduced with a tender solicitude to guard against their abuse, either by the overweening vanity of intellect, or the inflated enthusiasm of passion. Those mysterious themes on which the pretended philosophy of the world loses itself, and, wastes its strength in profitless speculations, •fate, free-will, fore-knowledge absolute,' are touched with a master's band, and instead of barren disputations, engender a tranquil reliance on Divine Providence, coupled with a holy circumspection, lest any man fall after the examples of unbelief. .
Few have investigated more deeply than Mr. Simeon the ritual law under the Mosaic dispensation, that singular piece of mechanism wherewith it pleased Almighty God to instruct His Church while yet in a state of pupilage, just as a skilful tutor chooses emblems or models to initiate his pupils into the abstract sciences. The doctrine of human depravity, and the atonement made by Christ, are thus beautifully illustrated in one of the whole length sermons, No. 443, vol. iv. p. 235:
"In all this (i. e. the sacrificial rites) was Christianity depicted. On what are the hopes of Christians founded, but on sacrifice, even the sacrifice of our Lord Jesus Christ, except through His atoning blocd not a creature in the universe can ever come to God. In presenting that offering He himself was the priest as well as the victim; and having offered himself up to God upon the cross, He rose from the dead, and went with His own blood within the vail, there to present it before the mercy-seat; and on that He founds His all-prevailing intercession. But let us come to a few particulars, and we shall see how the light beams upon us from every part of the Jewish Scriptures. We have said, that on some occasions, the offender laid his hands upon the head of his offering, just as Aaron did on the scape-goat, when he confesed over him all the sins of the Children of Israel ; and this teaches us that it is not sufficient for us that the Lord Jesus Christ has been offered for our sins: we must go to Him, we niust confess over Him, as it were, our sins; and we must by faith transfer to Him our guilt, and declare before God that we have no hope, whatever, but in His atoning blood. It has been said, also, that on some occasions, the offerer was sprinkled with the blood of his offering, and this, also, must we do; taking, as it were, the bunch of hyssop in our hands, and dipping it in the Redeemer's blood, and sprinkling our own souls with it, as the only possible means of purging our consciences from guilt, and of bringing us into a state of peace with God. It is in reference to this, that we are said to “ have come to the blood of sprinkling, which speaketh better things than that of Abel.” The sacrifice of Abel received, indeed, a sweet token of God's favourable acceptance; but the blood of our sacrifice washes all our sins away, and gives us a title to an everlasting inheritance.
• It has been observed, that on some occasions, the blood was mixed with water, and then sprinkled on the offerer. This shews us, that we must have the Holy Spirit, also, poured upon us; according as it is said, “ I will sprinkle clean water upon you, and ye shall be clean : from all
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your filthiness, and from all your idols will I cleanse you." The Lord Jesus Christ, we are told, “caine not. by water only, but by water and blood;" and this very mystery was intimated at the time of our Saviour's crucifixion, when the soldiers pierced our Saviour's side, and forth with came, in two distinguishable streams, blood and water; the one to cleanse us from the guilt of sin, the other from its power: according as it is written, “ Ye are washed, ye are sanctified, ye are justified, in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God.”
There is a topic on which the opinions of Mr. 'Simeon will probably be consulted with some interest. It has for some time been a question agitated among the students of prophecy, whether any, and what part, of the Jewish ceremonial law may be retained by that people when nationally converted unto Christianity? The question may appear rather curious than useful, and scarcely to be determined by any certain scriptural data. But the more minute investigators of prophecy, upon the literal scheme of interpretation, have been greatly struck by a passage in Zechariab (xiv., 16–19) where it is asserted, that in the days of Messiah, “all nations shall keep the Feast of Tabernacles unto the Lord.” It was generally supposed that the Prophet spake in figure, and a variety of mystic or allegoric meanings have, accordingly, been attached to his words. Mr. Simeon's sentiments will be found recorded in Sermon No. 381, vol. iii. p. 563, vhere, after observing that the great feasts of the Passover and de Pentecost plainly prefigured the atoning death of Christ, and ie out-pouring of the Holy Spirit, he says, * But now comes the difficulty. What was the event predicted by the Fist of Tabernacles? Commentators have mentioned two; namely, the inrnation of our blessed Lord, and the state in which all his people shild live in this dreary wilderness. For the former of these, there appes some foundation in Scripture; for our blessed Lord's Advent was, in all-obability, at that season of the year, the autumn, and not as we generallimagine, in the winter. And the expression whereby his incarnation is dignated by St. John, seems to have a special reference to this feast :“ Tl word was made flesh, and dwelt (tabernacled) amongst us," and this ing so wonderful an event, and withal so accordant with the other two, may well be supposed that the expectation of it should be kept up by a rticular feast, instituted for that express purpose. But then there arises great difficulty. Why should this be so particularly and so exclusive celebrated in the latter day? Why should such heavy judgments : denounced against those who should omit to celebrate this; whilst no notice at all is taken of the other two?' This necessitates us to lo for some other event, which is of sufficient importance to justify the pointment of a feast, and which demands that peculiar honour which is re exclusively reserved for it. As for the state in which all are to live uls the Christian dispensation, there is nothing at all mysterious in that, ning that calls for such a typical prefiguration, and nothing that is peculia appropriate to the latter day. We therefore dismiss that altogether,m our thoughts, as far as the prediction is concerned.
• In order to discover what event there is which the Prophet had in view, and which, either by itself, or in connexion with Christ's first Advent, corresponds with the Feast of Tabernacles, and which, moreover, calls for such distinguished honour in the latter day, we must examine the whole preceding context. The Prophet is speaking respecting the future restoration and conversion of the Jews. He foretels that it will be opposed to the utmost by the heathen nations; but that the Jews will triumph over all their enemies, and having destroyed immense multitudes of them, will be the instruments of converting the rest to the faith of Christ. Now it is obvious, that the Jews, in going up to their own land, must dwell in booths made of the branches of trees, or at best in tents, such as soldiers use when they take the field. It is equally obvious, that, in appearance, they will be as likely to fall a prey to their enemies, as when they came out of Egypt to sojourn in the Wilderness, yet shall they be as miraculously preserved then, as heretofore, not only through the destruction of their enemies, but by a supply of all their wants; and they shall have renewed to them all their former mercies under their Messiah, the Lord Jesus Christ, who will then reign over them, and fix his tabernacle in the midst of them, as their head and king. By this blessed event, their surviving enemies will be convinced, and converted to the faith of Christ; and all who shall resist the evidence thus afforded them, and refuse to join them in the worship of the Saviour, shall be visited with plagues, which shall make plain the indignation of God against them. At the Feast of Tabernacle they were wont to pray for the latter rain, which fell at that season of th year; and God threatens that they who should not unite with them i these holy exercises, “ should have no rain," and whereas Egypt was indpendent of rain, their land being fertilized by the overflowing of the Ne, they should have some other plague equivalent to that inflicted on oter disobedient nations, for God would sorely chastise all who should refus to unite in celebrating the wonderful event, and in honouring the Sapur who shall have brought it to pass. Now, here we have an object wrthy of such an ordinance to prefigure it: for it is the consummation of a the Prophecies relating either to the Jewish or Gentile world. And he we see why this feast is to be observed, not only in preference to, but the exclusion of, the other two: and certainly if we conceive, as may do, that the Lord Jesus Christ will then descend, and personally reignn the earth, the connexion between His first and second Advent wi' more strongly appear, and the authoritative injunction respecting the obrvance of that Feast will be more fully accounted for. Could we makeup our minds to this point, it must be confessed it would throw great lig on the passage before us; because this Feast would then have the sae direct reference to Christ as is unquestionably found in the other two But of His spiritual reign there can be no doubt: and that being thepnore glorious than ever, and over both the Jewish and Gentile world in de collective body, it may well be regarded as a renewal of His presence pon earth, and an accomplishment of the prophecy before us.'
We cannot take leave of these volumes without earnely recommending the incalculable advantage derivable from sth a model as Mr. Simeon, whether speaking from the pulpit or drough the medium of the press.
how freshness of indolence rela
, as a pless of preposit of a Atemporane
When we reflect on the objections to which extemporaneous preaching is liable; bow frequently the gift of a fluent delivery begets a dangerous carelessness of preparation; how often it is orged and yielded to, as a plea for indolence and slovenliness in study, thus enervating the mental powers, relaxing the tone of spiritual piety, and drawing men off from the salutary severity of deep meditation and profound research into the mine of Scripture, we cannot too strongly recommend to those who possess and are anxious judiciously to cultivate that gift, an attentive perusal in the first place of “ Claude's inimitable Essay on the Composition of a Sermon,” a fifth edition of which we are glad to see announced, with Mr. Simeon's latest alterations and improvements. We would next recommend Mr. Simeon's · Skeletons,' " Horæ Homileticæ,' and the Appendix' now before us; reminding the superficial reader that, however brief some of these Skeletons may appear, they evince throughout a great assiduity of research and industry. This Appendix' alone contains 718 Skeletons and complete Sermons. Amongst the latter, those preached before the University, on the Law and the Gospel, may rank with the productions of the first masters.
ABt. XII.- Préjugés des Reputations. Par J. B. Salgues. Paris: 1830. The author of the volume now before us has already published three other volumes, on the various prejudices and errors which pass current in the world ; and might, perhaps, if at all industrious in collecting, find ample materials for fifty volumes more. But of all the prejudices wbich infest society, none are more rife, or more absurd, than those which relate to the reputations of public men, authors, artists, or statesmen. A certain notion of a public man is formed no one knows how, and passes first to one person, then to another, till at length the whole reading world is possessed by it. This vague conception is quickly believed to be an exact representation of the character of the individual in question ; and the idea, gaining ground from day to day, and passing into the records of the times, is sometimes handed down to posterity. For this reason it is highly praiseworthy and useful, to examine from time to time the notions which we and our cotemporaries entertain, or appear to entertain, of those individuals who have distinguished themselves in our own days, or in the ages which have preceded, that, if necessary, we may correct our judgments, and approach more nearly to the truth.
M. Salgues, who, in the work before us, has undertaken to performthis task in part, has several qualities which befit him for the office.. He possesses a keen perception of the ridiculous, a certain species of bold malicious wit, a passion for satire, considerable knowledge, and a mode of expressing his thoughts which is by no means destitute of felicity. The absence of other qualities, however, even still more requisite than those we have enumerated, in whoever would be the Rhadamanthus of this world, is strikingly visible. His philosophy, his tastes, his opinions, are Parisian. He wants that masculine judgment which distinguishes between the simply absurd and the odious. Like Draco, he visits the sins of vanity and egotism with no less severity than those of cruelty and profligacy. : To crown all, while declaiming against prejudices he is prejudiced. Notwithstanding all this, his book is likely to enjoy a considerable share of temporary popularity, and, in spite of its defects, and of the vices of its author's mind, must unquestionably be useful in proportion as it is known.
The art of acquiring popularity, without deserving it, appears to be still more completely understood in France than in England. The secret, however, all the world over, is this: a man, desirous of enjoying the sweets of reputation, contrives, by cant, by flattery, or by more solid and convincing means, to gain over a small coterie of would-be wits to his party, and engages them to inform the world of the extent and splendour of his merits. They raise up their voices, trumpet forth his praises in all quarters, and insinuate that not to discover the genius of their protegé, is to be exposed to the suspicion of wanting it. This is enough. Every man in this age is ambitious of being considered a genius, as well as of knowing everything, and therefore every body falls into the trap, and lauds and magnifies the new idol, in order to be thought sagacious, and discerning, and well informed. Thus it is that men delude each other and themselves; while the quack, for whose benefit the farce is got up, laughs at the juggle, and enjoys the fruits of it.
M. Salgues is particularly attentive to persons who have acquired a reputation in this way. He commences with Madame de Genlis, a woman of unrivalled good fortune, and of considerable talents; but as genuine a quack as ever exhibited before the public. His exposure of the inordinate vanity, and audacious absurdity of her “ Memoires,” is cleverly executed ; and if the work at all survive this well-deserved castigation, it will only prove how much more acceptable idle gossip and bigoted cant are, than useful truths, and unostentatious piety. Impressed with the dignity of his subject, the author commences his article on Madame de Genlis with these words : “ It is now upwards of fourscore years since the good genius of France bestowed upon morality, upon theology, upon the sciences, and upon literature, Stephanie Felicité Ducrest, Marchioness de Sillery, and Countess de Genlis;' and he proceeds to expose to ridicule and contempt, the puerility and nonsense with which the old lady has stuffed the memoirs of her own life.
We believe it is the Margravine of Anspach who tells us that she narrowly escaped being squeezed to death, on the first day of her entry into this world, by the weight of an old friend of her mother, wbo came to visit her after the critical moment was over. Madame de Genlis, a still more important personage, was almost by miracle