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first character in England and Scotland sought his correspond. ence.
His dissolution was sudden and unexpected to his friends, but probably not to himself. He had frequently expressed his expectation of an early death. Immediately on his being seized with an alarming complaint, his church, anxious for his valuable and important life, spent a day in humiliation and prayer. The assembly was numerous, and deeply affected; ardent supplications, mingled with many tears, were offered to Him who is able to save. But the time was at hand when he must be removed to that better world, for which, by is illustrious piety, and unweaied diligence in his Master's Work, he was now mature.
The nature of his illness derived him, in great measure, both of speech and reason. Yet in some lucid intervals, he was enabled to declare that he rejoiced in God his Savicur; and likewise to signify, by raising his hand, in reply to questions which were proposed to him, that he cheerfully resigned his spirit into the the hands of Christ; that he had the peace which passes understanding, and could leave his dy ing testimony to the ways of God.
He departed December 13th, 1743, in the 50th year of his age, tenderly mourned by his bereav, ed family and congregation; sincerely regretted and highly honoured by the town and the whole community. Z.
SKETCH OF REV. THOMAS WADSWORTH.
THOMAS WADSWORTH, M. A. Fellow of Christ's College, Cam
bridge, was born at Southwark. He was so weak In the first month of his life, that he was given over for dead; but by a wonderful providence was on a sudden recovered. While at Cambridge, he gained great respect by his college exercises. In 1652 he was fixed in the rectory of Newington Butts. In his settlement here, it was remarkable, that the parishioners were divided into two parties, and on the vacancy both went with their petitions to Westminster, neither knowing the other's mind, and he was the person pitched upon by both. Here he not only preached constantly, but zealously taught from house to house. He gave Bibles to the poor, and expended his estate, as well as time, in works of charity among them; and it pleased God to give him abundant success. But in 1660 he resigned the living to Mr. Meggs, who pretended to be the legal rector. Mr. Wadsworth however did not live useless; for beside his lecture on Saturday morning at St. Antholine's, and for some time on Lord's day evenings, and Monday nights at St. Margaret's, (where he had a great concourse of hearers) he was chosen by the parish of St. Lawrence. He was also a lecturer of St. John Baptist. He was indeed an extraordinary man; of singular ability, judgment, and piety.; wholly devoted to God; and did not care for conversing with the rich, unless they could be prevailed on to be free in acts of charity. He would reprove sin in any person of whatever rank; but with much prudence, and with great candour, which he took pains to promote in others;
God would prepare him and his For for sickness and death. many years he performed his hard, but pleasing work, under distressing pain from a stone in his reins, which at last brought him to his end. After preaching his last sermon, he endured a week of extreme pain night and day, in which he possessed his soul in singular patience. When his pains were sharpest, he said, "I am in an agony, but not a bloody one; what are all my pains to what Christ under. went for me!" The evening be fore his death he was asked, how he did; he answered, "I have been under a very sharp rod, but it was what my heavenly Father laid upon me; for he has said, as many as I love, I rebuke and chasten.' This is a paradox to the world; but everlasting arms are under me; and, I bless God, he hath taken all the terror of death away from me." To Mr. Parsons, his fellow labourer, he said, all my self righteousness I disown; and trust only in Christ, hoping I have a gospel righteousness." When those about him pitied his agonies, he re peated that text, "the heart knoweth its own bitterness, and a stranger intermeddleth not with its joy." "You know what my pains are, but you know not what my consolations are. Oh, how sweet will my glory and triumph be after these sharp pains!" When his relations wept about him, he was displeased, saying, "What are you troubled, that God is calling home his children? If you think I am afraid of death, you mistake; for I have no fear of death upon me." Under his sharpest pains, no other language escaped his
for which end he often gave this rule; "If a good sense can be put upon what another says or does, never take it in a bad one." He was always serious, though frequently cheerful, and was remarkable for sanctifying the Sabbath. It was his usual practice, for many years, as soon as he was out of his bed on the Lord's day, with a cheerful heart and voice to sing part of a psalm or hymn, or to repeat the acclamation of the heavenly host; "glory to God in the highest; on earth peace, good will toward men;" in order to put himself into a spiritual frame for the work of the day. In his family his heart was greatly raised in singing psalms. He used often to say to his wife and other relatives, "Don't you find a sweetness in this day? Certainly it is the sweetest day in all the week." He was mighty in prayer, and often admonished his friends to watch for opportunities to seek God in private. In all his relations he was greatly beloyed and singularly useful.
When he was ejected, the lamentations of the people would have melted any compassionate heart. At their desire, he preached privately to one congregation at Newington, and to another at Theobalds, by turns, without taking any salary from either. He afterwards had a fixed congregation at Southwark, His charity to his distressed brethren in the ministry was great. He made collections for them both at Southwark and Theobalds, having a singular faculty for disposing his hearers to give liberally. When in perfect health he was thoughtful of changes, and often prayed that
lips, than this; "Father, pity thy child." He died on Lord's day, Oct. 29, 1696, aged only 46.
SKETCH OF REV. THOMAS
THOMAS GOUGE, M. A. of King's College, Oxford, was son of the eminent Dr. William Gouge. After taking his de. grees, he left the university and his fellowship, being presented to a living in Surry, where he continued two or three years, and then removed to St. Sepul chre's in London, in 1638, a large and populous parish, in which with solicitude and pains he discharged all the duties of a faithful minister 24 years, i. e. till the act of uniformity in 1662. Beside his constant preaching, he was diligent and charitable in visiting the sick; not only ministering spiritual counsel and comfort to them, but liberally reliev, ing the necessities of the poor. Every morning through the year, he catechised in the church, chiefly the poorer sort, who were generally the most ignorant, and especially the aged, who had most leisure. To encourage them to come for instruction, he once a week distributed money among them; but changed the day, to secure their constant attendance. The poor, who were able to earn their own living, he set to work, buying hemp and fax for them to spin; paying them for their work, and selling it, as he could, among his friends. In this way he rescued many from idleness, poverty and vice.
His piety toward God, the necessary foundation of all other virtues, was great and exemplary, yet still and quiet; much more
in substance, than in show. It consisted, not in finding fault with others, but in the due gov; ernment of his own life and actions; exercising himself always to have a conscience, void of offence toward God and man; in which he was such a proficient, that, after long and familiar acquaintance with him, it was not easy to discern any thing in him, that deserved blame. Such was his modesty, that he never appeared, by word or action, to put any value upon himself. In regard to the charities he procur, ed, he would rather impute them to any, who had the least concern in obtaining them, than assume any thing to himself.
When he quitted his living at St. Sepulchre's, upon some dissatisfaction about the terms of conformity, he forbore preaching, saying, "there was no need of him in London, and that he thought he could do as much good in another way, which would give no offence." Afterward however he had licence from some Bishop to preach in Wales, when he took his annual journey thither; where he saw great need of it, and thought he might do it with great advantage among the poor, on account of his charities there. He was clothed with humility, and had in a most eminent degree the ornament of a meek and quiet spirit. His conyersation was affable and pleasant. A wonderful serenity of mind was visible even in his countenance. Upon all occasions he appeared the same; always cheerful, and always kind; ready to embrace and oblige all men ; and, if they did but fear God and work righteousness, he heartily iged them, however distant from
tenth of their
him in judgment about things less necessary, and even in opinions, that he held very dear.
But the virtue, which shone the brightest in him, was his charity to the poor. God blessed him with a good estate, and he was liberal beyond most men in doing good with it. This in deed he made the great business of his life; to which he applied bimself with as much diligence, as other men labour at their trades. He sustained great loss by the fire of London, so that (when his wife died, and he had settled his children) he had but 150l. per ann. left; and even then he constantly disposed of 100/. in works of charity. He possessed singular sagacity in devising the most effectual ways of doing good, and in disposing of his charity to the greatest extent and best purposes; always, if possible, making it serve some end of piety; e. g. instructing poor children in the principles of religion, and furnishing grown persons, who were ignorant, with the Bible, and other good books; strictly obliging those, to whom he gave them, to read them diligently, and inquiring afterward, how they had profited. His occasional relief to the poor was always mingled with good counsel, and as great compassion for their souls, as their bodies; which, in this way, often had the best effects. For the last ten years of his life, he almost wholly applied his charity to Wales, where he thought there was most occasion for it; and he took great pains to engage others in his designs, exciting the rich, in whom he had any interest, to works of charity in general; urging them to devote at least a
estates to this
When he was between 60 and 70 years of age, he used to travel into Wales, and disperse considerable sums of money, both his own, and what he collected from other persons, among the poor, labouring, persecuted ministers. But the chief designs of his charity were to have poor children taught to read and write, and carefully instructed in the principles of religion; and to furnish adults the necessary means of religious knowledge. With a view to the former, he settled in Wales three or four hundred schools in the chief towns; in many of which women were employed to teach children, and he undertook to pay for some hundreds of children himself. With a view to the latter, he procured them Bibles, and other pious and devotional books, in their own language; great numbers of which he got translated, and sent to the chief towns, to be sold at easy rates to those, who were able to buy them, and given to such as were not. In 1675 he procured a new and fair impression of the Welch Bible and liturgy, to the number of 8000; one thousand of which were given away, and the rest sold much below the common price. He used often to say with pleasure, that he had two livings, which he would not exchange for the greatest in England; viz. Christ's Hospital, where he used frequently to catechise the poor children; and Wales, whither he used to travel every year, and sometimes twice in a year, to spread knowledge, piety, and charity.
While Mr. GoUGE was doing
be better applied, that " he went
all this good, he was persecuted
ON CHRISTIAN ZEAL.
FEW subjects in religion have been viewed in lights so diverse and opposite, as that of zeal. Some seem to consider it as constituting the very essence and
ly effects. It may not be unimportant then to inquire into the nature, properties and obligations of truly Christian zeal.
sider it as a thing, indifferent innocent perhaps but yet a mere appendage, or rather excrescence of Christianity; superfluous, unimportant and useless. To neither of these opin ions does the word of God afford any countenance. It faithfully
Zeal is opposed to torpor and indifference. It may be denomisum of all goodness; the foun-nated an ardour and impetuosity of mind; or a lively, vigorous, dation of Christianity, and its suHlowing state and exercise of its perstructure too. Others treat affections. From this general every kind and degree of it as so definition it appears that zeal is much fanaticism or hypocrisy. either virtuous or criminal, beneWhile a third class affect to conficial or noxious, according to the object and the manner of its exercise. By way of ascertaining, therefore, the nature and qualities of that zeal which may proper ly be styled Christian, we will consider it as a personal duty, and as a duty we owe to the cause of God, and to the best interests of our fellow men.
It has been justly remarked that true zeal, like charity, begins at home. Its prime office is to correct what is wrong in ourselves; to see to it that our own hearts be right, and our lives exemplary. Its most vehement
warns us that there is a zeal which is false and noxious. And it informs us that there is a genuine and holy zeal, not indeed so properly constituting a distinct virtue by itself, but rather pervading the whole spirit and character of a Christian, and producing the most useful and love