Pagina-afbeeldingen
PDF
ePub

and many of her members most truly deserve our sincerest respect and affection. But if the Holy Scriptures are to be believed, the Lord of the Church, who is our only rest and refuge, is not present with her as he is elsewhere. He must be sought in that Church which has held the same truth from the beginning,—which fulfils her Lord's command and brings souls to him,—which is not divided and distracted by a variety of doctrines and teachers, all claiming to be heard as teachers sent by God.

“ You will ask me, if I have so long believed the Church of England not to be a branch of the true Church, why have I so long continued within her ? Because I have continued to hope for better things ; I have waited to see whether the arm of God would interpose and save her; and I have not felt uneasy under the line of conduct I was pursuing. I had no warnings from God (as far as I could judge) to tell me plainly to leave the Church in which I was born. But I now feel thus no longer; latterly the question has pressed powerfully and constantly on my conscience; I can give no reasons, except worldly ones, for not seeking the mercy of God, at once, where He offers it; I dare not refuse to obey, now that I hear (as I believe) the voice of Christ saying to me, ' Arise and follow me.'

"I have therefore resigned my licence into the hands of the bishop, and I beg now to give up all my claim to the benefits of the endowment of St. John's Church, and return it into the hands of those who have contributed to it, at the same time that I feel most deeply how much they will be disappointed and distressed at that which I am conscientiously obliged to do. All that I can do in return for their past goodwill and friendship will be to render every help in my power to assist any arrangements which it may be thought desirable to make. To myself the loss of all that I give up is great indeed in every way, but the call of duty requires us to make every sacrifice that may be demanded of us; and therefore I could not hesitate for a moment to sacrifice everything rather than not hearken to the command of God.

" I cannot either be insensible to the evil opinion which you will probably entertain respecting myself, and my conduct in the step I am now taking. It is impossible indeed that some should not think ill of me.

All I ask is that you would judge as charitably as possible, and believe that if it were in my power I would still labour to the utmost for your spiritual and temporal welfare.

" I must also ask you to bear in mind that I am not now in any way changing my belief in religious doctrines ; that which I have to the best of my power preached to you, I still believe

to be the true and pure gospel of the grace of God and it is because I

[graphic]
[ocr errors]

am more and more convinced that this gospel is not that which is taught by the Church of England, that I now depart from her, and seek' for it, and for him who gave it, in the bosom of the Catholic church. There I know that it is to be found; there, with the assistance of holy scripture, I learnt it for myself ; there I know, and see, and feel, by a thousand proofs, that our Saviour Christ is present; and there, through His infinite mercy calling His unworthy servant, I am about to go to Him.

“ Believe me to be ever, my dear Friends,

“ Most sincerely and affectionately yours, " June 23rd, 1815.

« J. M. CAPES." Our readers will not feel any surprise that we should take more than ordinary notice of this letter, if they remember our article of December, 1813, on church-building. We gave, with that article, a diagram or ground-plan of a church, after the newest or most popish fashion. We selected it for republication, mainly because it was given by the Incorporated Society for building Churches, in their Annual Report, as a sort of model-church. We noticed this circumstance as indicative of the growth of Tractarian, alias popish, influence, in the councils of that society.

That church was built by, and under the direction of, Mr. Capes,—the clergyman whose letter we have given above. The Incorporated Society thought it so beautiful, that they affixed two engravings of it to their report,—we thought it so popish in its leading features, that we devoted an article to the detection of their tendency.

Mr. Capes has now plainly confessed the bias under which he has long been acting. He tells us that for “ some years,"—that is, during all the time of the building of this church, he has been contemplating secession to Rome.

Beyond this confession, his letter tells us nothing. It is filled with phrases of this kind :

" It is only because I see it to be the will of God that I should “ take this step.”

“I remember that the call of God is to be obeyed at every

“ The Lord of the Church, who is our only rest and refuge, is not present with her, as He is elsewhere."

“ I have waited to see whether the arm of God would interpose and save her.” "I hear the voice of Christ saying to me, 'Arise and follow

“ In the Catholic church I know, and see, and feel, by a thou"sand proofs, that our Saviour Christ is present; and there,

clearly

“ risk.”

[ocr errors]

me.'»

" through his infinite mercy calling his unworthy servant, I am " about to go to him."

But the distinction between a true and loyal obedience, and mere enthusiasm, consists in this,--that the believer should be able to point out in God's word, the specific command which he bas obeyed

. All that we object to the Swedenborgians or the wildest of the Methodists, is, that they substitute their own dreams and fancies for the plain injunctions of the word of God. “To the law and to the testimony: if they speak not according to this word, it is because there is no light in them.” Not one single seriptural reason does Mr. Capes produce, for the momentous step he is taking. We have, therefore, no ground on which we can reason with him. He says he “ hears a voice :" but as we hear nothing of the kind, we have no common ground on which to stand.

This letter of Mr. Capes furnishes some justification of Mr. Close’s expression, on the score of which he has recently incurred much blaine : « The Restoration of Churches, the Restoration of Pepery." This sentence, the title of Mr. Close's last sermon,

many. But we have now before us a striking case, in which a pious but weak man begins by building a middle-age chưrch, and ends by embracing the middle-age creed !

offended

[ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][merged small]
[graphic]

THE LITERARY HISTORY of the NEW TESTAMENT. With Recommendatory Prefaces, by the Rev. E. Bickersteth and the Rev. J. Pye Smith, D.D. In one vol. 8vo. 14s.

BENEVOLENCE in PUNISHMENT; or Transportation made Reformatory. In post 8vo. 48. 6d.

The TEACHING of the PRAYER-BOOK. By John Wood Warter, B.D. Rector of Patching, Sussex. In 8vo. 75. 60.

PASSAGES from the LIFE of a DAUGHTER AT HOME. In foolscap 8vo. 38.6d.

A SUPPLEMENT to the HORÆ PAULINÆ of Archdeacon Paley: wherein his argument is applied to the Epistle to the Hebrews and the First Epistle of Peter. By the Rev. Edward Biley, M.A. 8vo. 7s.6d.

REASONS for the RESTORATION of the ORDER of DEACONS. By a Presbyter of the Church of England. In 8vo. 2s. 6d.

DAYS AND SEASONS ; or Church Poetry for the Year. 4s. 6d. ·

MISSIONS IN WESTERN AFRICA, among the Susoos, Bulloms, &c, by the Church Missionary Society. By the Rev. Samuel Walker, A.M. Rector of Gallo, Meath. In 8vo. 12s.

The MASS and RUBRICS of the ROMISH CHURCH, translated into English. By the Rev. J. R. Cotter, M.A. Rector of Innishannon. In foolscap 8vo. 3s. 6d.

The VIEWS of the ENGLISH CHURCH and her REFORMERS on BAPTISMAL REGENERATION. By the Rev. Charles Campbell, Vicar of Weasenham.

A CHARGE delivered to the Clergy of the Diocese of Salisbury, in April and May, 1845. By Edward Denison, D.D. Bishop of that Diocese.

The NEW GOVERNMENT SCHEME of ACADEMICAL EDUCATION for IRELAND Considered. By Alexander B. Hope, M.P.

A LETTER to LORD JOHN MANNERS, M.P. on Church Principles and Church Measures. By the Author of “ Maynooth, the Crown, and the Country." In 8vo. 2s.

A REVIEW of the Latest Events and Present State of the CHURCH OF CHRIST. By C. F. af Wingard, D.D. Archbishop of Upsal. Translated from the Swedish, by the Rev. G. W. Carlson. In small 8vo. 6s. 6d.

The MINISTERIAL POLICY in IRELAND: its Effects on the Church and State. By J. C. Colquhoun, Esq. M.P. In 8vo. ls.6d.

THOUGHTS on the WORK of the SIX DAYS of CREATION. By John W. Bowden, M.A. 8vo. 2s. 6d.

The POSITION of the SCOTTISH EPISCOPAL CHURCH. A Charge addressed to the Clergy of Glasgow, May 7, 1845. By the Right Rev. M. Russell, LL.D. Bishop. 8vo. ls.

The TRANQUILLIZATION of SYRIA and the EAST. Suggestions for the Establishment of Jewish Colonies in Palestine. By Lieut.-Col. Gawler, K.H. 8vo. 15.

The IDEAL of the ENGLISH CHURCH. By the Rev. R. Montgomery, In 8vo.

M.A.

THE

CHURCHMAN'S MONTHLY

REVIEW

AND CHRONICLE.

JULY, 1845.

THE SIGNS OF THE TIMES IN THE EAST: A WARNING TO THE WEST: being a practical View of our Duties in the Light of the Prophecies which illustrate the present and future State of the Church and of the World. By the Rev. E. BICKERSTETI, Rector of Watton, Herts. London: Seeleys. 1845.

We quite agree with Mr. Bickersteth that “the peculiarity of the times is such, and the temptations of Christians are so varied and multiplied, that it seems to be an urgent duty on those who receive light and help from the Holy Scriptures respecting the present state of the world, for their own guidance, to endeavour to communicate that light to others."

"Impressed by these feelings,” Mr. Bickersteth “ again addresses his fellow Christians on this subject ;” and for ourselves we have a deep and sincere conviction that he is well entitled to do so. Lord Bacon has beautifully observed that “ certainly it is heaven upon earth to have a man's mind move in charity, rest in providence, and turn upon the poles of truth.” In our view, it is equally certain that such a mind is formed to be a guiding one; and to this class, we are persuaded, belongs that of our excellent friend. We have long regarded him as possessing in an eminent degree these high, these happy requisites; and without pledging ourselves to every opinion which he has broached on the subject of prophecy,

[blocks in formation]
« VorigeDoorgaan »