information on the subject, they will find it in Three Sermons on the Prosperity of Christian Churches, and the Revival of Religion, by Joseph Fletcher, A. M.: and The Means of a Religious Revival; a Sermon, by John Howard Hinton, M.A. The w hy author of the former work refers us to the Pastoral Letter of the Rev. J. A. James, and the Sermon of the Rev. J. H. Hinton; and also to Five Discourses of the Rev. William Orme, and some forthcoming Discourses of the Rev. H. F. Burder.

On a general consideration of this subject, it has struck us, that there are two ways of bringing it forward. The one consists in representing that the means are ours; that we are to use these means; and that the larger and reviving influences of the Holy Spirit are to be anticipated as the result. This we conceive, as a general statement, to be a perfectly correct one. But there is another statement, according to our view entirely consistent with it: namely, that even the preparation, that even the disposing our hearts to use these means, to think of these means, and to desire a revival at all, is part of the Holy Spirit's work : that he comes, indeed, to revive his church; but that the preparing of his church is part of what he comes for: that we may pray for his coming, but that the very prayer itself is of his prompting: in a word, that the blessing begins on the part of the Lord that is the main pointand not on ours. Thus many blessings were to come upon the Jews, through the building of the temple. Yet when David had collected the materials, before a stone was laid, he was constrained to confess that the Lord had given him all; and that he could offer nothing, except out of what he had first received. And thus, in respect to revivals, “ Thy people shall be willing in the day of thy power;" but it is because the power is exerted, to make them willing.

Now which of these views we are most to press, must depend upon circumstances. A preacher who kept either of them entirely out of sight, would in all probability be totally in the wrong Our Dissenting friends seem disposed to press rather the former view: that means are to be used, and that the blessing will follow. Let it not be thought, for a moment, that we mean to censure them. They may see reasons for this. They may observe, amongst their hearers, such a disposition to look entirely to the all-sufficient and overwhelming grace of God in this work, as shall exclude the thought of seeking his help, and leave the expectants waiting in an attitude of torpid inactivity. They may, without exactly seeing this, apprehend a tendency to such feelings: and, in such a case, it of course becomes the duty of the wise and faithful minister, to warn his hearers not to neglect those means which God has given them, and which he generally blesses when duly used. It is the Holy Spirit who puts it into the hearts of God's people to use such means, but he does this, often, by his word in the mouths of ministers; and therefore they are quite in the way of duty, when they are insisting that the means should be used.-But with us, we question if the case is quite the same. Our standing tune is,“We must not neglect the means :" and so much so, that it sometimes makes the whole of the concert. We are to do so much, and we are to get so much. This we may call Evangelical, but, in fact, it is only another form of legalism ; since it teaches that we are to get grace, as the legalist teaches that we are to get merit, by something that we do: till at length it brings us to this; that the work of our salvation, in all its details, originates with ourselves; and so lands us, high and dry, on the shelf of Pelagianism, which is just where many of us are,

at this

moment:-masts gone by the board, cordage rotting, and hull gradually settling down in the silt and slime. The grand distinction lies in this; that Pelagianism makes the origin of our salvation to be in ourselves ; Calvinism, in God. The Arminian tries to find a place between; but the fact is, he is on two stools. Calvinism is a definite system; Pelagianism is another. Arminianism, we apprehend, is not. And hence it has appeared to us, that though there is such a name as Arminianism, there is no such thing; and that all who call themselves Arminians, are, in fact, either Pelagians or Calvinists. The deceiver, dreading to be called a Pelagian, takes the name of Arminian because more respectable: the sincere believer, who is terrified at the term Calvinist, takes the same name because he does not see the difference. But he has tasted the grace of God in Christ; he has been saved with a salvation that is not of himself: only get him on his knees, and his Calvinism comes out.

We were saying then, that, for Churchmen, we would recommend that view of a religious revival which refers all to God, as to its first source, and which shall take us off from an exclusive dependence on means, so that we may depend on Him. For in 'this general desire, and expectation of a revival, we would not see the National Church excluded, well knowing that it is also wanted there. That there has of late been a gradual, general improvement in the Church, we feel little doubt. We well remember the speech of an old clergyman. “I look back," said he, “ to a former race of clergymen, and those of my standing are certainly an improvement upon them. But now I see a young race springing up, who are an improvement upon us.' As to this general improvement of the Church, indeed, we see

little room for difference of opinion. But the Evangelical part of it-What are we to say here? Here people have felt a doubt; nay, we have felt it ourselves; and, to say the truth, we have noticed evils of various kinds, which we have thought of laying open. But, in the mean time, this has been done in other quarters; and done so violently, and with so much of a spirit in which we should be very sorry to participate, that, on the whole, the effect has been to suspend our design, and lead back our affections. The view which we have been led to take of the subject is this: that what is called “the religious world” amongst us, consisting of persons belonging to different denominations, of Evangelical churchmen amongst the rest, is, after all, the church of God in this land : that in it are to be found, with all their defects, the bulk of those who love the Lord Jesus Christ in sincerity: and that if any man be at enmity with them, he is at enmity with the people of God. In such enmity, we conceive, appears the true, biblical sin, of schism. We mean, such schism as the Bible denounces. So that while some writers are denouncing that as schism, which is nothing of the kind, true schism, that which is really schism, may be seen in that alienation of heart, which many are now beginning to display, whether from prejudice, personal pique, wounded self-importance, or any other cause, towards the religious world ; and which is really sin, and shews that those who are the subjects of it are still, more or less, in the gall of bitterness, and in the bond of iniquity. In this “religious world” we discover unnumbered defects. But all these defects we wish to bewail, as more or less our own; feeling persuaded that if this be not the church of God, the church of God is non-occurrent. As to the strictures of which this body has lately been the object, we by no means intend to say that they are wholly unmerited. On the contrary, we think that some of them have been most richly deserved. If the blows have been somewhat indiscriminately laid on, we may hope that, by the grace of God, discrimination will be found, on the part of the receivers: so that such of them as are foul, will not be felt; but such of them as are fair, will tell. Where there is the form of sound doctrine, it is difficult to determine what is the true church, and what is not. This is difficult in ecclesiastical history: but it is ten times more difficult at the present time. In a false church, we are liable to be misled by the semblance of good; in the true, by an appearance of evil. The superficial errors and faults of the church, will sometimes prevent our knowing it. On the whole, then, the effect of these considerations has been, of late, to draw back our affections to the religious world. If the church, just now, bear no other mark upon her, she at any rate bears this, that ALL men speak evil of her ; even some, froin whom it might have been less expected. Seeing the blows rained so thick upon her, we know her by that token; and return, though it be to receive part of the shower. And even should any thing again occur, so as to interest our personal feelings in this question, we hope that we shall not die at enmity with the religious world.

Such then being the views, to which we have of late been led, we were glad to meet with a confirmatory passage, so far at least as Churchmen are concerned, in the Pastoral Letter of Mr. James.

I will also concede that there are other favourable signs in the present day. Religion is most undoubtedly spreading, and I give God continual thanks for it, within the pale of the Church of England. The increase of truly pious, devoted, and laborious clergymen, is astonishing, and can be accounted for only on the ground of an extraordinary effusion of the Holy Spirit. It is impossible to doubt whether the preaching of so many enlightened and holy men is attended with great success. I am of opinion that a revival of a very decisive character, and to a very wide extent, is now going on in the Establishment; and that in innumerable places, the fire that burns upon her altars, sends up a flame of peculiar intensity and brightness. pp 15, 16. We do not make this quotation without a sigh, because of all that we know. Yet we feel equally refreshed, just now, by meeting with such a testimony; and by the spirit of candour which dictated it, in one of a different communion, who, though he differs, can speak of his Christian brethren, without contempt and bitter feeling. Would that it were so with all !

But what has this, it may be said, to do with revivals? The answer is clear. When we speak of reviving the religion of a community, we naturally, inquire what is that community's present state. And with respect to us Churchmen, while our friends of other denominations see a revival in us, we perhaps shall do well to seek one. Let us seek it, then, in the way that has been already stated. If it has been observed amongst others, that there has been too much of a disposition to overlook the means, then let the due use of those means be earnestly pressed upon them. But with us, perhaps, the disposition has too much been, to overlook the Source. To that, then, let us now begin to look. Let our eyes watch for the Lord, as those who wait for the morning. The idea of a revival, in its highest sense, conveys something more to our mind than a very gradual improvement. It seems to imply a speedier advance. And if we would have this, if we would take a spring, we must look for helps out of the common way. We must look for an EXTRAORDINARY power; for an EXTRAORDINARY effusion of the Spirit; for an EXTRAORDINARY operation on the part of Him, who worketh all in all. We must get rid of our stale old habits of theological thinking, and cease to measure what we are to expect by what we can do : willing to receive all as a free gift, and remembering that God will have the whole glory to himself.

Should such a revival come, we may expect that the accompanying signs will be various. What we call signs, others perhaps would call means. They are so : but being tokens of the Spirit's work already begun, we may also denominate them signs. We may look for instance, in pulpits, for a fuller, more free, less haggling declaration of the doctrines of grace; for a larger declaration of the doctrines of the cross. We shall begin to wish for &-revival from pure and unmixed motives ; not merely, for instance, to see public meetings excited, in order that they may contribute more money; though, if the excitement come, well and good.-But, above all, we may expect to see less of that spirit of nicety and false delicacy, which is now so common. This we conceive to be one of the main points. Some ministers, perhaps, are more infected with this fastidious spirit, than the laity : and while a friend who occupies the pulpit is laying down the truth so homely and plainly, that the pastor sits in an agony below in the reading-desk, biting his lips, blushing, aye, actually perspiring for shame, and wondering, with inward horror and distress, what the more educated part of his flock will think of it; they, the people themselves, shall be listening with the greatest earnestness and attention, perceiving nothing that is so very extraordinary, and hearing much that arrests their attention, and rouses their consciences. The sooner we get rid of all this, the better. It is worse than childish. Now, should there be any large effusion, in this our day, of the Holy Ghost, it is very possible that it may begin with individuals. This being the case, these individuals may become very different from others : and when this happens, it is likely that others, unless prepared for such a circumstance, will take offence at them. What if any churchman, overlooking ordinary restraints, and breaking through the usual routine, should begin to preach in the streets? This might soon follow, from such a present power of the Spirit as a revival implies. A man may now feel scruples as to the laws, as to established order, as to received notions of propriety, &c. But if a man were once brought under the immediate and extraordinary influence of the Spirit, we might soon see him giving all such scruples to the winds. No human laws would hinder his preaching, no human laws would hinder his praying, whenever and wherever the Holy Spirit should say, Speak. Surely we have seen quite enough to convince us, that


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