it is composed of righteousness and peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost.'

Thus man debases whatever he touches; even the spirituality of the gospel could not escape the contamination. But from this humbling survey of the treatment which christianity has received at his hands, let me advert, in conclusion, to the divine simplicity of the character which it is intended to form ; aud advert to it with a view to enforce its necessity.

The great gift of the new dispensation, the promise most frequently on the lips of Christ, and which he evidently gloried to repeat, is the promise of the Holy Spirit. The fulfillment of this promise, which is alike essential to the first and the last step of the christian life, infallibly transform its recipients into spiritual worshippers. They speak to God through no indirect or doubtful medium; they approach him by no lengthened process of preliminary forms; through the new and living way, it is their privilege to advan e to his footstool personally and at once. They address him with their own lips, and believe that he is listening to every word they utter. They bare their hearts to his inspection, and entreat him to penetrate and pervade them with his grace. Conscience, faithful to its trust, presents the record of its secrets to his eye; and, in the sovereign smile which approves its fidelity, feels re-confirmed in its office, and swears allegiance anew. Their thoughts are busy with the scheme of redemption; and as wo der after wonder rises on their view, they find themselves attracted nearer and nearer to the object of their worship. Their affections, expanding to admit his presence, invite him to enter and ascend the throne. Every part of their spiritual nature is employed; going forth towards him in appropriate acts and emotions, or passively waiting to own the first and gentlest impules of his hand. Hypocrisy is a mask which they wear not before men; before God, besides its inefficiency, of which they are perfectly aware, it would defeat the purpose dearest to their hearts. They would have every word they utter in the ear of God, issue as from the centre of their being. Whatever, while in his presence, diverts their thoughts, or induces them to express an unfelt desire, incurs their displeasure, and excites their regret. Not to hold fellowship with him, not to feel that their spiritual nature has come in contact with his, is to experience a disappointment for which no external rites, however numerous, splendid, or venerable, can compensate; a disappointment like that which we may suppose the high priest would have felt, had he passed into the holiest of all and found the glory departed, the ark, the mercy-seat, and the cherubim gone.

* The Father seeketh such to worship him.' He has sought them under every dispensation of religion; but, under the present economy, he has a right to expect that his search will be peculiarly successful. The declaration, indeed, denotes their comparative rareness; and reminds us of the value which God sets on them. The formal and insincere universally abound; but such he disregards; they are an abomination in his sight. But wherever a spiritual worshipper is to be found, there is an object which attracts the divine regard. He entertains the lofty design of translating all his spiritual worshippers to the temple above.

Finally, let those of my readers who belong to the disciples of Jesus, be ambitious to exemplify the spiritual nature and dignity of their christian vocation. Delivered from the shadows and ceremonies of the law, you are placed in a situation pre-eminently favorable to increased spiritual. ity of mind. Disciples of a school in which all human authority is abjured; in which every lesson that is taught is 'spirit and life;' and in which no limits are placed to


the discoveries made by the Great Teacher, you are expected to build up a character eminent for the distinctness of its heavenly features, to become proficients in the art of spiritual-mindedness. Yours is not merely the character

. of the ancient believer, changed in nothing but in name; it is the elements of which that character is composed, brought from the dimness and distance of a twilight dispensation into the radiance of the divine presence, baptized with the Spirit of Christ, sustained with a purer, aliment, and thus developed, expanded and matured. Looking at the superiority of your spiritual knowledge, the freedom of your access to God, and the fullness of heavenly influence put within your reach, the gospel may be said to have placed you midway between the Jewish economy and the celestial state. Or, as if it had placed you in effect even nearer than this to the privileges of heaven, you are represented as having come to mount Zion, and unto the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem. Raised into this ethereal region, your views are not to be bounded by the sensible horizon of time; urge and erect your souls to take a larger survey; expatiate over the ample fields of revelation; let your eyes range from everlasting to everlasting ; you will thus become conversant with objects in whose radiance this world will stand eclipsed, and familiar with scenes and plans compared with which all earth is only a point, all time a moment, all human knowledge an imperfect idea.

If the mind takes its character from the objects which it most contemplates, then yours should be a transcript of all that is great, and pure and spiritual. You are born spirit of Spirit: you have the mind of Christ; he takes you into daily and familiar converse with himself on the subject of eternal purposes and infinite grace,

that he

may so trans. fer to you his own likeness, and send you forth into the world as his spiritnal representatives. Your spirituality is, in his eyes, your only glory; it is the only mark by which he distinguishes you from the world, the only part of your nature which he owns as his offspring ; you cannot therefore open your souls to the ingress of the world, or leave them unfortified against its influence, without consenting to lose your great distinction, and being guilty of treason against the King of souls.

In effacing from your minds the image of the earthly, his design is to impress on them the image of the heavenly; that you may show forth his likeness and circulate his praise in the world. If he admits you to stand in the light of his presence, it is not that you may absorb and conceal it; but that, as prepared mediums, you may transmit the glory of his thorne to others. He has made


the subjects of a kingdom which disdains the boundaries of time and place, that your benevolence may know no limits. In approaching his altar as his royal priesthood, you are to speak as intercessors for the race; in offering thanksgiving, you are to be the organ and voice of the gratitude due to him from the world. And having enrolled yourselves as his subjects and servants, you are to apply your hand to the vast machinery of his providence, and to mingle with the operations of his almightly love, in restoring to harmony the disorders of the universe. Ele has given to you his own Spirit, that even here you may become naturalized to a spiritual element, and be changed into it: and that when you are called to join the great community of spirits, where the body itself is to be sublimated into spirit, you may not be found wanting in any heavenly function, but may enter on it as on the enjoyment of your native state.




• Learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto

your souls.' 'And all bare him witness, and wondered at the gracious words which proceeded

out of his mouth.'

In perusing the writings of many a moral instructor, the only abatement from our edification arises from the unwelcome recollection of his character. His statements of truth are forcible, his illustrations clear, his appeals affecting; but the remembrance of the contardiction which existed between his doctrine and life returns, the spell by which he held us is dissolved, a shadow falls on the page, and his most arrowy appeals drop pointless and short of our hearts. But in listening to the instructions of our blessed Lord, the recollection of his character is not merely welcome, in order to do them justice, it is essential. There have been others, indeed, who have owed the success of their teaching partly tɔ their moral excellencies; but such is the excellence of his character, that, could we only bring to the perusal of his instructions a vivid conception of it, we should no longer have to deplore their inefficacy; could we only come unto them under the full influence of that idea nothing could long resist their power: as often as we returned to them, they would receive so strong a reinforcement of impression from that association, that they could not fail to pass farther and farther into the mind, making for themselves a home in the heart, changing the soul into their own form and quality and thus ver

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