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common in the indolent prodigality the strongest similes which creation of the old father ; nor, alas ! in the or human language can afford, are fraud and hypocrisy of the steward. applied ;-if the exhibition of such There is nothing uncommon in the a portrait was designed, as we supcharacters either of Sturdy or of pose, then most assuredly our auRatcliffe ; nor in the circumstances thor should have been peculiarly of the balls and suppers in which careful to preserve the consistency the hero joins; nor in the imprese and uniformity of the exhibition. sion which Jane Ratcliffe's charms Now, we might say, in the language made on his susceptible heart. Nor of the painter, that his portrait is there, we trust, any thing un- wants keeping. We have already common in the impression which adverted to the “ eventful history Mr. Wilson's preaching seems to at Tewkesbury; a history which have made upon his mind. The does not exalt the character of Falke instances of such a change may be land as a Christian. We might few-lamentably few but the cir- now advert to another particular in cumstances attending it are not so his conduct which we cannot corextraordinary as to require public dially approve. We mean his bee fame to resound them. Nor in the haviour to the daughter of Ratcliffe, future character and history of his counsellor and friend. That Falkland, does there appear any young lady, in whom the reader thing of such a marked character might feel interested, did by her as to affect deeply the soul-to graces and her charms, make a touch its secret strings, or to hare very deep impression on the mind row up its feelings. If the history of Falkland ; and if, as appears to be all real, the case cannot be ale have been the case, the mutual imtered ; but, then, why make it the pression amounted to something subject of publication at all? If like an engagement between the the history be, as we suppose, only parties, the breaking of such engage“ founded on” facts, then why not ment, even though only half formed, make the facts more numerous and was certainly a matter of deep and more interesting? Why not exhi- serious moment. But even setting bit the hero under circumstances aside the idea of engagement altothat are calculated to excite and to gether, we do think that Falkland cherish a deeper interest in his ber was by far too precipitate in breaking half? Why are not his talents up his connection with the family more profound ? his taste more re- of Ratcliffe, and particularly bis fined ? his heart more tenderly alive growing attachment to one of its to the amiable and the lovely? his members. No doubt the character very appearance more striking and of the family was decidedly worldengaging? If the author wished, ly; and an union between vital as we suppose he wished, to gain Christianity and the vanities of the access to a circle of readers not world can never be effected on usually accessible in the ordinary suitable principles. Still there are way of Christian address or instruc- certain duties which Christians owe tion, we might say that he has even to the world; and Falkland egregiously failed in the exhibition should have used some means to of such a hero as Falkland.
gain over to his views, those in Farther, if a correct portrait of a whom he could not fail to expereal Christian,-a man who has rience a deep interest. That these been renewed in the spirit of his means would have been successful, mind; who has passed through that we do not say, but no evil could great change, to represent which result from the prudent and judi. cious application of them. Falk exhibition of the melancholy influe land should not have been the first ence which political pursuits and to break off the connection, and speculations have in counteracting thus to expose himself to the charge the native power of decidedly Christa of fickleness and caprice. We do ian principles. Clementson was a not say that he was justly charge. young lawyer of great talents and able with these faults, for we are of most commanding eloquence. satisfied that this conduct was dic. His principles were formed in the tated by conscientious principle. best school; he had written in deStill we would have been better fence of Christianity and its leadpleased had he left matters to take ing doctrines with ability rarely their regular course; had be avowe excelled ; and his knowledge and ed his sentiments along with the experience were of the greatest vareasons why he adopted them, and lue to Falkland at the first opening availed himself of the advantages of his mind to the genuine impresa which he possessed to gain over sions of truth. In the estimation others to his views. In this way, of those who knew him best, he one of two things must have been was considered as not only a Christthe issue, either he must have ian, but as one of no ordinary atbeen made the instrument of spirit- tainments; and his accession to the ual good to those in whom he was cause of evangelical truth was most deeply interested, at least to one bailed with delight by its friends. of them; or, if all his efforts failed, Whether or not the truths which he must at length bave been neces. he professed ever really affected sarily compelled to decline an union his heart, may be questioned; but which could not be formed on suite there can be no doubt that truth, able principles. As the case stands, even in its highest and most spiritthere appears in his character an ual character, may gain on the unover-readiness to form or to break derstanding, and powerfully interest connections without adverting to the affections, even while it cannot the consequences that might ensue. be considered as cordially embraced, Christians should, above all things, and is not fully ingrafted into the cultivate consistency of character; life. Certain it is, that the mind and study, in the language of in. of this man was haunted by the spiration, “ To walk in wisdom to. dreams of worldly ambition. He wards them that are without." embarked on the troubled ocean of
While we hesitate to characterize this world's politics. He attached the history of Falkland as deeply himself to a certain political party ; interesting, we have no hesitation came into parliament under their in applying the designation to the wing; entered with keenness into cbaracter and history of Edward their favourite plans; and by his Clementson, one of the most valued eloquence contributed powerfully to friends of our hero. The account their advancement in the scale. A given of this singular character is certain personage, whom our author no doubt only an episode, but it calls the Duke of Cleveland, takes does possess in our estimation more him under his patronage ; and real value than all the rest of the when this said Duke becomes prime work put together, and the execu- minister of Great Britain, the agent tion is distinguished both by talent by whose instrumentality he had and by taste. The design of the been pushed forward into power, author in dwelling at full length naturally and reasonably looked for on the history of this man, seems some honourable remuneration.to bave been to afford a practical Whether the premier ever designed to bestow any substantial favour whose unsteadiness and selfishness upon Clemenston, is doubtful ; but he was taught by dear bought certain it is, that when the poor experience to acknowledge. For man was labouring under a con- some time his efforts to gain this sumptive disorder, and in the end were fruitless; and it was last stage of his mortal existence, not without a most painful struggle appeal was made in vain to the that the mind of his dying friend justice and the feeling of the great was withdrawn from the frippery man. Self-interest was the sove of the court, and the golden dreams reign principle; and all the better of the cabinet, to those more endure feelings of gratitude and affection able riches and honours to which the were sacrificed at its shrine. faith of Jesus invites. At length, his
The effect of political connections persevering and truly Christian efa and pursuits in deadening moral forts are crowned with success, and he feeling, and leading away from has the satisfaction of contemplating conscience and from God, is strike in the latter days of his friend, the ingly pourtrayed by our author in triumphs of faith and of hope. The the case of this man. Ambition principles of his better days returnseemed to gain the ascendency overed with a new and resistless energy. every other principle. All his His affections, withdrawn from time thoughts ran in the channel of po- and its vanities, were elevated to litical party; and all his wishes things above, and he fell asleep in seemed to centre on the attainment the well-grounded expectation of of place. The higher and purer being raised again to a life of imclaims of that religion which he mortality and of bliss ineffable. professed, and vindicated, and The whole history of this man is praised, were lost sight of; and its well told. The impression which practical influence on his life and it leaves on the mind is strong and conduct was but dimly, if at all salutary. It is no visionary reperceptible. The book of God was presentation ; but the exact copy allowed to lie neglected ; and his of what is not unfrequently exhibitreading seems to have been con- ed on the broad arena of life. Con fined to the perusal of the political science is often sacrificed on the pamphlets of the day. The offices altar of worldly and crooked policy. of piety were discontinued, while The race of ambition is preferred the spirit seemed to evaporate un- to the race of faith and of Christian der the pressure of the world and enterprise. Men professing god. its attractions. Falkland was grieved liness often enter themselves into to mark the religious declension of unseemly alliances with the deter, his friend; and his feelings grew mined enemies of all that is holy ; in acuteness as his friend, labouring and a single point of approximation under a hopeless disease, approache will sometimes effect an union and ed the limits of his mortal existe a co-operation which the genius of ence. He availed himself of all Christian love has often attempted the resources which judgment, and in vain. Similarity in political friendship, and Christian feeling opinion makes atonement, or suge could provide, with the view of gests apologies at least, for the most drawing his attention to the things glaring infidelity in principle, and which belonged to his everlasting the most revolting profligacy of welfare. His first effort was to dise manners. The violence of political engage him from the trammels of speculation leaves no room for God worldly policy and ambition, and either in the thoughts or in the to make him “ cease from man," habits of men. Religion appears a tame and insipid thing, when The following short statement placed alongside with politics, and of our author on this subject we the summum bonum of human am- cordially approve: bition is inseparably linked with the advancement of a favourite • What gave him," Falkland, “ the measure, or the predominance of a greatest uneasiness in the review of this new favourite party:
sect, was, the dangerous practical tendency
of some of their doctrines. To treat al. Among the leading characters in
most exclusively of the privileges of Christthe life of Falkland, Monckton, the ianity, and to neglect the enforcement of worthless steward, holds a promi- its duties, whatever influence it might Dent place. Defeated in his plans have on the preachers themselves, it was of fraud, and in danger of a crimic pretty, evident, he thought, must be at.
tended with the most imminent danger to dal prosecution, he has the policy their flocks in general. He very justly
. -10 leave the country, and to fly to thought, indeed, that to withhold any of a foreign land ; but before doing so, the truths of Scripture, because the sa. and when in the very hottest of gacity of man has discovered they may be his conflict with the son and suce productive of bad effects, was a presump
tion little consistent with our limited and cessor of his constituent; this fallen capacities, and scarcely less than a worthless man suddenly becomes a direct libel on the sacred Scriptures. At zealous professor of religion, and in the same time, he could not but perceive in bis correspondence with honest the divine aliment prepared for us, there
were both food for the ordinary state of Slurdy, attempts to gain on the the soul, and cordials when it was in a feelings of his prosecutor, by a state of depression, and the indiscriminate sprinkling of religious phraseology. use of the latter he could not but view We are at some loss to know on as having a tendency to produce disinclinawhat principle our author declines tion for more ordinary sustenance, and to ranking this man among the class ish and dangerous degree of excitement."
engender and impress in the mind a fever. of hypocrites. If ever there was a Vol. ii. p. 18. hypocrite at all, this was one. The garb of piety was obviously assum- Our author (vol. i. p. 298, &c.) ed to compass a mercenary end, enters into a defence of the Calvin and the hollow-heartedness of the istic system, particularly the docprofession was incontrovertibly ese' trine of election. The statements tablished by the fact, that, so far are, on the whole, fair and Scripfrom wishing to restore his ill-got- tural; but we question the expeten gain, the profession was taken diency of their introduction in such up evidently for the purpose of a place, and in such a species of securing a more effectual grasp of composition as this. Those who it. With regard to the principles already accord with them, do not. of the new Secession, as embraced need io be reminded of them in by Monckton, we shall merely say, such a connection ; and those who that if not decidedly Antinomian, do not, are not likely to be thus they have at least a very strong tinge gained over to the cause. More. of Antinomianism. A slight com- over, we have long been of opinion parison of the writings of these Sece. that the real origin of that hostility ders with those of Crisp, and others which men of the world manifest of the last century, must convince to evangelical doctrine and preachany competent judge, that their ing, is not to be traced so much to style of doctrinal statement is un- the peculiarities of Calvinism, as scriptural, and that their scheme to the practical nature of its princidoes look with a very cold and sus. ples. We have seen the leading picious eye on the claims and the features of Calvinism, considered as precepts of practical morality. an abstract and melaphysical system
VOL. XXI. NO. XI.
embraced by men of all creeds, and warmth of expression in treating of a of no creed in other respects ; and scheme of doctrine which the angels conso long as we view it in the light of template with astonishment, whatever
may be his sentiments on these doctrines, a philosophical speculation, we need which form the essence of Methodism, fear no opposition from the men properly so called, he has most decidedly of the world. Only keep out of passed the limits which divide the two terri. view the doctrine of grace, regene- tories, and is a Saint at least, perhaps even ration, conversion, and the influe mation of some, an infatuated Calvinist.”. ence of the Spirit as the source of Vol. i. p. 291. all holiness, and you will render the most rigid Calvinism exceedingly palatable. Here lies the
On grand cause of difference. the one hand, religion is held to consist in being baptized, profess, Genuine Religion the best Friend of ing the faith of the Gospel, and
the People : or, the Influence of leading a sober and decent life.
the Gospel, when known, believed, On the other hand, all this is
and experienced, on the manners held to be good for nothing, except
and happiness of the People. By in so far as it is associated with the
THE Rev. ARCHIBALD BONAR, renewal of the heart, the indwelling
A. M. Minister of Cramond. of the spirit, and the cordial recep- With a Memoir of the Author. tion of salvation by the cross. Now,
Fifth Edition. Glasgow: 1822. all these may be held, and have been
Price 1s. held by many who do not hold the peculiarities of what is commonly termed Calvinism. The truth of among other phenomena of the pre
It is a very interesting fact, the matter is, however, that this is among other phenomena of the prereally the Calvinism that is most materials for reading appears to
age, that the multiplication of fiercely opposed ; and so long as no keep pace with the progress of the practical difference is visible, the
art itself. In this we see the workEvangelical and the Calvinistic mi
ing of that sure principle known in nisters will be held by the votaries of the lax morality of the world, article is always regulated by the
trade, by which the supply of any as convertible terms.
demand. But though this be true, “ There is," says our author, “ some.
it must not be forgotten, that many thing particularly baffling in the inquiry. principles which hold good in ordiA man may maintain and openly profess nary things are entirely reversed a thorough belief in most of the revealed when we come to matters in which truths of Christianity, and if he be a cler- religious concerns are involved. In gyman, or advanced in years, he may sometimes in conversation, but only on import common life, the greatest demand ant occasions, and these very briefly, draw generally exists for the best and out those truths into their practical conse- most beneficial articles ; but wide quences, and still remain within the pale as the circulation of religious books of rational and gentlemanly Christianity, unquestionably now is, those books But if he make the doctrines of the Gospel not only the object of speculative belief,
are still in most request which have. but the principle of his life and conduct ; nothing at all to do with religion,
he advert, in the pulpit, or in conversa- which is by far the most important tion, to those grand distinguishing features
concern of human beings. They of Christianity, which the apostles were so vehement in maintaining, and so cautious
who are acquainted with the real in guarding against misconception; above character of man can be at no loss all, if he feel, or even profess, any undue to account for this fact; but the