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devotional and didactic exercises in the pulpit. Here “he spake as a dying man to dying men.” In his religious sentiments, he was strictly and zealously evangelical, but at the same time, remarkably catholic toward those, who seemed to dif. fer from him. The evangelical sentiments of which he was so fond, and #. which he so honestly and earnestly contended, he believed to exist at least as much in the heart, as in the head. He had no confidence in tue efficacy of any religious sentiments, however good and true, separate from a good life or evangelical holiness. By evangelical sentiments, he meant the plain, simple, unadorned and undisguised doctrines of revealed truth, as expressed in the language of the Holy Ghost. But what he meant by evangelical sentiments and evangelical preaching may be best learned from his own expressions, in a public charge to one of his younger brethren” in the ministry, on the day of his ordination. “We charge you,” says he,....“be very solicitous, and let it deeply occupy your mind, that it be in truth, the very gospel you preach,....not the novel invented plans of uninspired men, nor those latitudinarian doctrines, which may well enough comort with a boasted age of reason, and correspond to the taste of men totally depraved. But preach the good old doctrines of the gospel, the precious doctrines of grace, the doctrines of the reformation; for it is a matter of notoriety, that when awakenings, convictions and conversions prevail, and a serious sense of religion takes place, in any remarkable degree, it is always under the influence of the peculiar doctrines of grace, which resuppose men's natural alienation }. God, and enmity against him, and, of consequence, that they are totally depraved antecedent to a divine ower to renew and sanctify them; hat they are lost, perishing, and utterly ruined in themselves. We trust you will be cordial for this, and will not hesitate to hold it forth with clearness, and with a zeal becoming the vast moment of the subject. “We charge and exhort you to be lively, full and strong, in preaching the
great doctrines of the cross....We
wish you to preach the Deity, the eternal divinity of Him, in whom dwelleth all the fulness of the God. head bodily...who is the wonder of angels, the admiration of saints, and the astonishment of the powers of darkness....We wish you to be full and explicit in preaching his great atonement, his perfect mediatorial righteousness, for the justification before God of all repenting sinners, and the power of his Spirit and grace for their sanctification. “We charge you to inculcate holiness of life, as connected with holiness of heart. We wish you to be full and explicit in preaching the doctrines of divine sovereignty in the communication of mercy, the absolute necessity of regeneration, the victorious power of grace in the new and heavenly birth, his distinguishing love in giving any repentance unto life, and faith in Christ, with benevolent affection of heart and life, as necessary to qualify for the pure joys and glory of heaven. You are, on a gospel foundation, to urge it upon all those, who have professed to believe in God, to be careful to maintain good works.” Such were the ideas which this venerable servant of Christ entertain. ed of evangelical sentiments and preaching ; and such were the sentiments, which he himself uniformly preached, through his long ministerial course. This charge, which was delivered with a solemnity and earnestness, which seemed to intimate that he had a presentiment of his approaching dissolution, and that it would be the last he should deliver, should it escape the ravages of time, will remain a pleasing and respectable specimen of Christian eloquence, as long as the gospel of Christ shall be loved and respected in the world. These evangelical doctrines, as he called them, were his comfort and support in his last sickness, in which he exhibited an edifying example of Christian humility, patience, and resignation, to those who had opportuni. ty of secing and conversing with him; and we doubt not but these doctrines continued to comfort and support him while passing through the valley of the shadow of death, to the heavenly Canaan.
The writer of this account had the satisfaction of several pleasing interviews with him during his declining state, both before and after he was confined to his house.
In my first visit to him after he was confined to his chamber, which to me was one of the most pleasant and edifying I ever made him, I thought I discovered more of the amiable meekness, humble dignity and perfect resignation of the Christian than I had ever before discovered in him. It appeared to me that if any state on this side heaven can be truly enviable, it is that of an humble Christian, gently taking his departure out of time into etermity ; who, as he outwardly decays and grows weaker and weaker, is inwardly renewed and grows stronger , and stronger ; to whom as outward prospects darken, the prospect of a brighter world beyond the grave grows clearer. This appeared to be remarkably the case with this precious man. This interview, the impression of which, I trust, will never be erased from my mind, forcibly brought to my recollection those lines in Dr. Young.
When I asked him how he did, he replied, with one of the most expressive smiles, I ever observed on his corintenance, “I am a poor creature sinking under the decays of nature, but I am not without comforts. I have many things to be thankful for yet. I am now depending on that foundation which i have always been endeavouring to establish in my preaching, the mercy of God in Christ, and which I believe to be the only foundation, on which any one can stand with safety. I do not profess to have attained to full assurance, but I have such a hope as raises me above all distressing fears of death. I am habitually loafing for the mercy of our Lord 3rza. Christ unto eternal life. If there is anything more for me to do, I am willing to stay and do it in my poor +ay, but if not, if I know, my own heart, I am entirely resigned to go.”
He discovered much, affectionate concern respecting the people of his charge, and the resettlement of a gospel minister among them. He was, however, remarkably cheerful and pleasant.
Before morning prayers, he desired me to read the 23d and the 147th Psalms, a part of the latter of which, he considered as predicting the future prosperity of the church, in the contemplation of which, he observed, he had derived great consolation, during his declining state.
A little before I took my leave, among several other questions, which I proposed, as thinking it very doubtful whether I should ever see him again in this world, I asked him, supposing we were to confine our preaching principally to one point, what that point should be. He inmediately replied, “to impenitent sinners, we must preach their totally lost and ruined condition by nature, or the fall, (1 forget which) and the utter impossibility of their ever being saved, except by the free grace of God, in Christ.” Thus did this venerable minister of Christ, who watched for souls as one that must give account, bear his dying testimony to the truth and importance of those doctrines, which he had preached through life. The words of dying men are supposed to possess peculiar weight, and to deserve peculiar consideration. May these words of a dying Christian, and a Christian minister, be so regarded, by all who shall read them. Blessed are the dead who die in the Lord.
Feb. 19, 1807.
The apprehensions of Philologos are probably removed, and his wishes fulfilled, by the appearance of his 10th Number.
The admission of Candidus, in reply to our remarks on his strictures upon the Extract from Sennebier, relative to Calvin's treatment of Servetus, would necessarily lead into too wide a field of discussion, on a subject, neither very intelligible nor useful to a large portion of our readers. We repeat our high respect for this learned correspondent; and we presume he will readily perceive, that a learned, critical, and laboured examination of a transaction, not in itself of great importance, and of which different contemporary authors of respectability have given different views, does not comport with the desi of our work. We had intended to publish the life of Calvin soon after the conclusion of that of Luther; but a wish to obtain some information not in our possession, has hitherto delayed the publication. We shall now wait to receive the sketches of the lives of Calvin and Servetus, promised by Candidus ; when these are in our possession, he shall not have reason to complain that we are partial or unjust to the character or conduct of either. A proper opportunity will offer, in the life of Calvin, to introduce all that is necessary to exhibit in its true light the transaction in question.
We have received Mr. Webster's remarks on the eclectic review of his Dictionary ; and though they will fill a greater number of our pages, than we would wish ordinarily to devote to such subjects, we shall readily comply with his request, when the Number of the review, to which he refers, is received.
Leighton will accept our thanks for his valuable communications. . .
W. is informed that we shall speedily enter on the review of the American edition of Ree's Cyclopedia. We think with him, that the cause of religion as well, as of literature requires this at our hands.
Our biographical correspondents are reminded of their engagements.
Hohs Owen, D. D. of Queen's College, Oxford, was lineally descended from the prince of Glamorgan, one of the last family of the five regal tribes of Wales. Henry Owen, father of the Doctor, was some time minister at Stadham in Oxfordshire, and reckoned a strict puritan. John, his second son, was born in 1616. Such was his proficiency in learning, that he was admitted to the university at 12 years of age. He there pursued his studies with such diligence, that for several years be allowed himself but four hours sleep in a night. His whole airn was, as he afterward confessed with shame and sorrow, to rise to eminence in church or state. When Archbishop Laud imposed several superstitious rites on the university, Mr. Owen had received so much light, that his conscience couli not submit to them ; and God had now made such gracious impressions on his heart, as inspired him with warm zeal for the purity of his worship
and reformation in the church...
Upon this his friends forsook Vol. III. No. 3.
him, as one infected with puritanism, and he became so obnoxious to the Laudensian party, that he was forced to leave the college. About this time he was exercised with many perplexing thoughts about his spiritual state, which, with his outward troubles, threw him into a deep melancholy, that lasted three months, and it was nearly five years before he attained a settled peace. When the civil war commenced, he espoused the Parliament’s cause, which his uncle, who had supported him at college, so vehe mently resented, that he at once turned him out of his favour, and settled his estate upon another person. He then lived with a gentleman of honour, who, though a royalist, used him with great civility; but he going into the king's army, Mr. Owen went to London, where he was a perfect stranger. One Lord’s day he went to Aldermanbury church, to hear Mr. Calamy ; but a country minister (of whom he could never after hear any thing more ) preached on Matt. viii. 26 which discourse was blest for the removal of his doubts, and laid the foundation of that solid peace and comfort, which he enjoyed through his future life. His health was now restored, and he wrote his book, called a Display of Arminianism, which made way for his advancement. The committee for ejecting scandalous. ministers presented him, on account of it, with the living of I ordham in Essex, where he continued a year and a half, to the great satisfaction of the parish and country round about. On a report, that the sequestered incumbent was dead, the patron, who had no regard for . Mr. Owen, presented the living to another ; on which the people at Coggeshall, about five miles distant, invited him to be their minister, and the Earl of Warwick, the patron, readily gave him the living. Here he preached to a more judicious and more numerous congregation (seldom fewer than two thousand) with great success. Hitherto he had been a Presbyterian ; but upon further inquiry he was convinced, that the Congregational plan was most agreeable to the New Testament. He accordingly formed a church upon it, which flourished many years after his death. So great a man could not be concealed. He was called to preach before the Parliament in 1646, and several times afterward on special occasions, particularly the day after the death of Charles I. His discourse was on Jer. xv. 19, 20, and deserves to be recorded, as a perpetual monument of his integrity, wisdom, and modesty. Soon after, calling on general Fairfax, he met Cromwell, who, laying his hands on his shoulders, said to
him, “Sir, you are the person I
must be acquainted with ;” and
from that time he contracted an
intimate friendship with him, which continued till death. He informed Mr. Owen of his intended expedition into Ireland, and insisted on his presiding in the college at Dublin. With great reluctance the complied, and continued there about a year and a half, preaching and overseeing the affairs of the college, He then returned to Coggeshall, but was soon called to preach at
In September, 1650, Crom
well required him to go with
him into Scotland. Having
staid at Edinburgh half a year,
he once more returned to his
people at Coggeshall, with whom
he hoped to spend the remainder of his days. But he was soon
called by the House of Commons to the deanry of Christ Church, Oxford, which, with the consent of his church, he accepted. In the following year (when he was also diplomated D. D.) he was chosen Vice Chancellor of the university, in which office he continued about five years. This honourable trust he managed with singular prudence. He took care to restrain the vicious, to encourage the pious, to prefer men of learning and industry, and under his administration the whole body of the university was reduced to good order, and furnished a number of excellent scholars, and persons of distinguished piety. He discovered great moderation toward Presbyterians and Episcopalians; to the former he gave several vacant livings at his disposal, and the latter he was ever ready to oblige. He was hospitable in his