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primand his vice. This our Saviour did in the case of those who subsequently “for envy delivered him to be crucified.” I know of no one sin of the heart so thoroughly dangerous as that of envy. It will obscure the brightest and most splendid accomplishments. It makes the subject of it intensely miserable, and at the same time, wofully guilty before God. It does indeed exist in different degrees in different

In its smallest degree, it is an ingredient of inward wickedness. In excess, it has led men to commit murder. Cain slew his brother Abel, because his own works were evil, and his brother's righteous. No envious man as such can have communion with God. He may seem to have this, if eloquent in audible and public devotion; but, no! God cannot commune with an evil spirit. Envious men are miserable, and their own tormentors.

66 Wrath killeth the foolish man, and envy slayeth the silly one.(Job v. 2.) “A sound heart is the life of the flesh, but envy the rottenness of the bones. (Prov. xiv. 30.)

Paul was vehement against this vice in the case of Elymas, the sorcerer, who envied the triumphs of Christianity. This man sought to turn away a certain deputy or proconsul from the faith. Sensible that he should no more be regarded if the doctrine of the Apostles was received, “he withstood them," (says Doddridge,) "in their preaching, in a crafty way, by a variety of false insinuations." Now how

' was this man dealt with Did Paul say to him,


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“Dear Sir, excuse me for interrupting you, but I must take the liberty of suggesting that it is hardly fair and honourable in you to counteract the effects of our preaching. Perhaps, as a matter of gentlemanly courtesy, if from no higher motive, you will desist?” Pooh! This would have been a strangely loving way, indeed! This would have been moral cowardice, a thing, by-the-bye, often mistaken for love. But no. “Saul, (who is called Paul) filled with the Holy Ghost, set his eyes on him, and said, “O full of all subtilty and mischief, thou child of the devil, thou enemy of all righteousness, wilt thou not cease to pervert the right ways of the Lord ?" and the envious man was struck with blindness. (Acts xiii. 9, 10.) It is commonly said that envy is the vice of little minds,” and it is perhaps true, that in such minds this vice is most prominent, because they have not the ability to conceal it. But it is also to be found in great minds, otherwise, so far as I can judge, we should have had no apostate angels. All the angels originally in heaven would have kept their first estate and not envied the authority of God, and afterwards the happiness of our first parents. Envy, as a proud, monstrous, and malignant fiend, stalks through all ranks of this world's community, invisible, indeed; but on that very account, the more potent to do deeds of deadly hatred, and accomplish wide spreading mischief. The invisibility of human vices makes it difficult to personify them; but still the effects are scen and felt.


I have at this moment in my recollection, a number and variety of particular sayings and doings of particular men, all of them Ecclesiastics, from which no other inference could be possibly drawn by a close observer, than that they were influenced by envy. I could relate each of them with exact circumstantiality In all these instances, the person envied had not only not said or done anything to give them the slightest possible ground for provocation, but had said and done all in his power to make himself agreeable and affectionate, and even to conceal, as well as he could, those qualities for which he was preferred to do certain useful and public work in preference to themselves. But I forbear to furnish these instances, partly because the task would be very disagreeable, and partly because the narration would occupy more time and paper than I can spare. And should any man think that even this hint of what I could do, had better have been omitted ; I tell that man that I think very differently. The results of envy to worthy men are often no trifles, especially as regards their public life. And envious persons may think themselves most mercifully dealt with when the details and evidences of their envy are withheld from the public. Geniuses under the power of envy are but too often mightily consequential. They give themselves airs. They frown. They look, or try to look, like personages of immense importance. They would, if they could, frighten you out of your wits.

Envy in low life is abusive and slanderous. In high life, it is full of chicanery and deception, and sometimes most barbarously oppressive. In middle life it cannot succeed so well, having stubborn difficulties to encounter, but when it does succeed, injury to somebody or other is the consequence.

But wherever it is, and in whomsoever it gains the ascendant, it is in the correct view of every discerner of spirits--the devil.



It is quite necessary to inform the reader that I use the word eccentricity, not because it is the most proper word to designate all I mean in those mental peculiarities, which some persons have thought to be objectionable ; but, because, in every case of disappointment which I have painfully experienced, the name of eccentricity has been used, and charged upon me, with a view to justify the infliction of disappointment. I may have hinted this before, but it is

. well for the reader to be reminded of it. I proceed. Such eccentricity as I defend is not every where and always objectionable. The strongest prejudices against it are, for the most part, to be found amongst people of little, low and vulgar minds. Persons who, though not destitute of piety, are so wonderfully obtuse, as to be utterly destitute of all perception of its usefulness. Persons so wanting in good taste, as to have no relish whatever for its raciness, point and brilliancy,--for such properties have been attributed to it, not originally by me, but by competent London Reviewers.

Among the well-educated and highly accomplished classes of society, including eminent ministers, a venerable archdeacon, bishops, and archbishops,

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