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for months in succession, subject them to unjust and dishonourable suspicion, and but for the protection afforded them by the hearty sympathies and noble testimonials of sincere Christian friends, would have so tortured them as to endanger their lives! Weak brethren! Olet them keep their distance, for they are, to a large extent, a dangerous fraternity. They won't like these strictures at all. Nauseous medicine is never palatable, though very beneficial when quietly taken. Weak gentlemen may redden with wrath, and weak ladies may go into hysterics, we cannot help it; the Dismals and the Addlepates have had their way long enough. They have propagated their sour and surly absurdities for centuries, and indulged in their defamatory prattle, to such an extent, that they must be ferretted out of their hiding places. Let them reply to us if they can. We have an army in reserve. Facts, persons, times, places, and circumstances. They by their persevering unkindness and injustice, have forced us to a mode of writing, and a peculiarity of illustration, not to be seen in our sermons and theological papers, inserted in established religious periodicals, and which we should never have thought of but for their threatened incorrigibleness. It is possible, however, that while they pay but little regard to our righteous animadversions, they may take to the following : “ Judge not that ye be not judged. For with what judgment ye judge, ye shall be judged, and with that measure ye meet, it shall be measured to you again. And why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy brother's eye, but considerest not the beam that is in thine own eye? Thou hypocrite, first cast out the beam out of thine own eye, and then shalt thou see clearly to cast out the mote out of thy brother's eye.” (Matt. vii. 1–5.) A beam means a great fault or sin. Now I happen to know some of you, who, besides other faults which I will not mention, are chargeable with these which are open to the public. You are half awe stricken at a brother whose mote (if it be even that) is pleasantry, but you think nothing, notwithstanding your profession of godliness, of trifling with God's public worship. You satisfy yourselves with one public service in a day, when some of these worldly or carnal people, as you call them, use two, and sometimes three, regularly. Week night services you do not even think of attending, while “worldly people” attend them with undeviating constancy and punctuality. And although the ministers are efficient men, and carefully, and prayerfully prepare good sermons for your benefit, you ungratefully and disrespectfully neglect them. How is it then, that you can so preposterously delude yourselves with the notion that you are so spiritual ? How is it that some of

you who are preachers, or “office bearers," in the churches, can be less exemplary than the “worldly" and “the carnal ?” One thing is certain, that you are not entitled to the innocent recreation of an amusing anecdote, or a healthful laugh, for your spiritual condition is such as to call for deep humiliation and repentance. I shall close this chapter by a reference to a truly great and good man.

The learned Edward Stillingfleet, D.D., in his controversies with the Church of Rome, was so remarkably witty and humorous in some parts of his writings, that his adversaries wrathfully reviled him, and charged him with “blasphemy.” “But,” said he, “wherein I pray doth this blasphemy lie, have I

Ι uttered anything that tends to the reproach of God or true religion ? have I the least word, which malice itself can stretch to the dishonour of Jesus Christ, the Prophets and 4 postles, or the Holy Scriptures, written by divine inspiration ? No. I challenge the boldest of them, to produce anything I ever said or writ, that doth but seem to look that

way. Have I made the practise of true devotion ridiculous, and the real expressions of piety the subject of scorn and derision ? No, so far from it, that it was only a just zeal for the honour and practise of true religion made me willing to lay open the ridiculous fanaticisms of some pretended saints in the Roman Church.” [Ans. to Treat. Idol. Pre. p. 6.]

Now, reader, I am anxious to have it well understood that, however much Stillingfleet's wit might have incensed his enemies of the Church of Rome, it never deprived him of his proper status in his own church, the Church of England. In some communities, however, not only the exhibition of wit, but the very notion of a man's having it, goes against him; no matter how many amiable qualities he may possess; no matter how much he may diminish or control his wit, or how important the services he may render to the churches, a brand is upon him. He has got the

before him, it follows him, and by ill-natured Pharisees, and weak brethren-strong enough to do mischief-he is hunted down, and without an interference on the part of God, he has nothing to expect but repudiation, and as à minister to become extinct.

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CHAPTER XXIII.

ENVY.

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Envy, as a sin in some professing Christians, is represented by Doctor Dwight, of America, as "a fiend inhabiting the Temple of the Lord.” Some good people talk about living down envy,” that is, going on in a Christian course, and increasing in ability and usefulness. In some very few and rare instances this may

be done ; but in very numerous cases, envy is so far from being cured by this process, that it is thereby aggravated; nevertheless we must go on in piety and usefulness. All our efforts, however, in doing good for evil, in seeking to conciliate envious persons, in voluntarily hiding from them, as far as we conscientiously can, the notice we may attract, or the thanks and commendations we may receive, will prove utterly abortive; because it is good and not evil that makes them so sullen and angry. While envy is, "pain felt and malignity conceived at the sight of excellence or happiness,” an increase of excellence and happiness makes envy worse and

What must be done then? I answer, let an envious man alone; doing nothing but pray for him; except when he will not let

you alone, but seeks in one way or another to injure you. And what then? I reply, love him for his soul's sake, but re

worse.

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