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approbation in a word, he fell from his state of acceptance, and became for a time undeserving the favor of God or man.

The third light in which David appears to us, is that of penitence, agnonized remorse, godly sorrow for sin, and final reformation; and we have reason to believe, that the Father of mercies accepted his heartfelt sincerity and renewed obedience. We must beware of concluding, at the same time, that David died as perfect a man, or that he is now as exalted a spirit among the redeemed, as if he had never committed crimes of such enormity. The consequences of sin are eternal, the everlasting punishment of the gospel; and he who transgresses the commands of the Most High, in hope of repenting and being pardoned hereafter, sins against his own soul. Criminals may be pardoned at an earthly tribunal; they may reform their lives, and attain to high degrees of christian perfection; but the memory of former unworthiness and guilt, although it may not visit their conscience forever and damp even the enjoyment of heaven, will produce a privation or diminution of that enjoyment. The grand doctrine of revelation appears to be this: All men will experience the consequences of their actions; all will be judged according to their use of advantages and opportunities enjoyed; all will receive that allotment, which the prevailing temper of their mind shall demand or render necessary. In other words, both recompense and punishment will be strictly consequential: recompense will not be elective, nor will punishment be arbitrary or vindictive. Our intellectual and

religious character I would thus describe, as bearing some resemblance to the colored shadows of philosophy. Character is the color of the soul, and like those shadows assumes the same hue with the coloring medium.

In these sketches of the king of Israel, we have both example and warning. However approved, however near to the heart of the Almighty, he received no special grace to preserve him from falling; and after his melancholy defection, he was left to exercise his own freedom of will and election. Was he able to stand, liable to fall, and able to rise when he had fallen? So are we.. It becomes us therefore, not only to persevere in the path of wisdom, but to be intensely watchful, lest we plunge into delinquencies awful as his, from which we may never emerge.

There is another consideration, arising from a view of this subject, of much practical importance. Merely to glance our eye at passages of the Bible, and form conclusions as if they were detached maxims and independent aphorisms, is extremely unsafe and delusive. We perceive the wisdom of contemplating the truths of revelation with a faithful and comprehensive survey. Those stars of its firmament are forever there, bright and beautiful, singing together and shouting for joy; but to make their "forms grow visible," we must employ the aid of wide and unwearied investigation. With the telescope of thought and reflection, we must penetrate and explore their region of mystery, "their own calm home," and bring down their points of glory to earth, to diffuse their nicest influences around our homes and our hearts. T.

THE APOSTLE PETER A UNITARIAN.

IN a former number of this work,* it was attempted to be shown that Peter must have been a Unitarian at the time of our Saviour's ascension. The sources of proof to which recourse was had for establishing this position, were, first, his known declarations and conduct while a pupil of Christ; and secondly, the recorded instructions which he, in common with the other disciples, received during that period. If it be possible, in any case, to form an opinion, approaching at all to accuracy, of what a man's religious views at a given time of his life must be, from a knowledge of his previous education, behaviour, and conversation; then it will be conceded, we trust, that there are satisfactory grounds for the conclusion to which our reasoning has led us, that the Apostle Peter is to be regarded as a Unitarian Christian at the period of his history at which we have now arrived.

But new revelations are to be made to him, it may be said. Our Saviour, just before his death, promised to the disciples further illumination, by which they would be led "into all truth." Who knows, it may be asked, but Peter, unitarian as he doubtless was at that time, may yet see cause to change his opinions and become a teacher of Trinitarianism? In reply to this, we will not stop to show the intrinsic improbability of such an event; but, taking up the subject where we left it, in our former essay, proceed to ascertain how the matter stands * Vol. ii. p. 149 sqq.

in point of fact. The question is to be settled by recurring to the records we have of his preaching, controversies, private teaching, devotions, and writings. That we may not be accused of taking a partial view of the evidence in the case, we shall adduce all of it that relates to the subject.

1. We begin with the apostle's preaching. His first sermon occurs in the second chapter of the Acts. He delivered it, we are told, immediately after the special illumination of the Holy Spirit. Does it contain any thing like Trinitarianism? Not a syllable. It is thoroughly unitarian from beginning to end. The points of doctrine it presents are these. 1. The divine mission of Jesus Christ. "Jesus of Nazareth, a man approved of God among you;" or, as it should be rendered," proved unto you to be a man from God." 2. The evidence of the divinity of his mission. "By miracles and wonders and signs, which God did by him in the midst of you, as ye yourselves know." 3. His death, and how the event stood connected with divine Providence and human agency. “Him, being delivered by the determinate counsel and foreknowledge of GOD, ye have taken, and by wicked hands have crucified and slain." 4. His resurrection, together with the Author and proofs of it. "Whom God hath raised up, having loosed the pains of death; .. this Jesus hath God raised up, whereof we are all witnesses." 5. His exaltation, and to whom he was indebted for it. "By the right hand of GoD exalted." 6. His possession of the promise of the holy spirit, dispensed through him to the first Christians, and how he came by it. "Having received of the FATHER

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the promise of the Holy Ghost, he hath shed forth this, which ye now see and hear." 7. His offices, not underived, but conferred by the Most High. "Let all the house of Israel know assuredly, that God hath made that same Jesus both Lord and Christ."

Of this character are the doctrinal parts of Peter's first sermon. It contains not a word, as to the point in question, different from what we have quoted. Who does not see that it is unitarian in every particular? Could one be delivered more directly opposed to trinitarian views? And yet, free as the apostle's preaching was from what are so much vaunted, in our day, as the "doctrines of grace," it was not without the most salutary effects. When the people heard it, "they were pricked in their heart," and said, "what shall we do?" And now we have a specimen of Peter's practical directions. Do they savor of modern orthodoxy? Does he tell them to worship the trinity, to mourn over native and entire depravity, to confess they can do nothing themselves, to hope for a transfer of the penalty of their guilt to a substituted victim, or to calculate on having their moral deficiencies supplied by the imputed righteousness of Christ? As far from it as possible. He says to them, "repent and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ, for the remission of sins." "Save yourselves from this untoward generation." So taught the most able and zealous of our Lord's ministers. We have too much respect for the understandings of our readers to add a single word by way of comment.

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