then only that we enter upon his history, not for the amusement of the vacant hour, or for the vanity of knowledge, but that we tremble as we read, and are anxious to find, in his earliest experience, or in the long course of his irregular yet continued progress, the foundations on which to build our hopes of his advancement in wisdom and happiness. It is only when, in his deepest ignorance and obscurity, we still contemplate him as under the Paternal guidance of the High Wisdom that is watching over him,-it is only when, amidst his most repulsive crimes or calamities, we can discern in secret a Divine Compassion planning his restoration, and his ultimate felicity, it is only when, amidst all the most extraordinary aberrations of his nature or his destiny, we still can trace that progressive thread of his history, which a light from Heaven never ceases to illuminate,-it is only amidst this Knowledge of God, that we can truly understand and appreciate the character of Man; that wecan look upon him without the gloom of superstition, the derision of pride, or the weakness of excessive admiration; that we shall ever regard him, under all aspects, as an object of the deepest interest, and the most hopeful Charity, while we feel it to be profane to throw any chill of despondency on the character or prospects of that nature, in which, however defaced, the Divine Image has never been obliterated, and which, wherever it breathes and moves, is embraced by “ the Everlasting Arms !"

III. I now, my brethren, call you, in the third place, to the contemplation of another bright and connected field of Knowledge, which, indeed, cannot be studied so successfully as it ought without the knowledge of Nature, and of Man, and which, in return, throws infinite light upon both these branches of inquiry,- I mean the great and sacred field of Divine Revelation. I know, that, in the times which we have seen, this highest ground of all has either, on the one hand, been too often neglected, or been cultivated, on the other, perhaps, with too exclusive an husbandry. It has been glanced at with a very thoughtless scorn by the inquirers after natural knowledge, and, in return, their uninspired speculations have been conceived too hastily to have no connection with that “wisdom which is from above." While I would most anxiously warn the youthful student of human knowledge,

against that profané indifference which the History of Science has too often in these latter days exhibited to the most interesting and sublime of all subjects, I call him to the study, not as to something limited to itself, but as necessary to crown and complete all his other inquiries. I call him to trace, in the wonderful history of Revelation, the same Wisdom and Goodness which he has discovered in Nature, and which has ever watched over the destinies of Man, coming forward here in still more distinct operation ; speaking not only in silent signs, and regular appearances, as when“ day unto day uttereth speech, and night unto night showeth knowledge,”—not merely in the manifestations of a general watchfulness and Providence, but coming still into closer contact with man; presenting itself before him in miraculous interferences, uttering even human language, and in a human voice, and at last in all its Divine Majesty actually manifested in the Human Form. I ask, my brethren, supposing the evidences of Revelation to be much less convincing than they are, is this a subject to be treated with scorn by any class of inquirers ? Does it not coalesce with all other knowledge, and fill up its gaps and deficiences in a manner that would make every ingenuous mind at least wish it to be true; and were we sufficiently aware in ever inquiry that it is only " the knowledge of the Holy” which is really understanding and wisdom, could we hesitate to fix oureyes upon that Knowledge here, where it beams out upon us in all its simplicity, in all its lustre, and in all its mercy? It is only in this high inquiry, that we at last gain an insight into the profound mystery of Human Nature ; that we see the grave itself rendering up its dead; that, in the Voice which says, “I am the resurrection and the life,” we hear the call which throws wide the gates of eternity, and which can awaken the purified spirit of man from the labours, the sins, and the death of this lower world, to a new career of glory and immortality within the veil of nature, and before the “ pure eyes and witness” of Him who " sitteth between the Cherubim.”

It is to the illustration of the evidences of Revealed Truth, in some one or other of their most interesting and important aspects, that the days immediately approaching, and which usher in the annual course of our Religion, have in this place been usually dedicated. The young have in these days been long instructed with a singular reach and refinement of thought, and a no less inimitable felicity of expression(may that invaluable Instruction be still long continued to them and to us!) to trace the connections between Divine and Human Knowledge, to draw the proofs of the Gospel from the sources of History, and from the recesses of the Heart of Man---to feel the true dignity of Revelation--to recognize in it, not the limited dogmatism of the schools, but that diffusive wisdom and Divine adaptation by which it has been accommodated to the character and the circumstances of human nature, in all their varieties, and to rise above the trivial objections which spring from the cold hesitations of an incomprehensive mind, to the full contemplation of that “ knowledge of the Holy,” which is the truest perfection of all understanding I now willingly leave the instruction of the young in much wiser and abler hands, and shall rather suggest, before I conclude, to those of us who are advanced in our course, and who know from experience the infinite value of that Divine Knowledge, that it is of more import, in the opening of another Evangelical year, for us to consider what has been

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