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When we read the story of these ancient worthies, don't we admire their wisdom, their courage, their choice, and their noble superiority to all those poor creatures who opposed them, and cast out their name as evil? What man of taste does not approve

the

conduct of Abdiel in Milton? Never character was more enviable, or more worthy of imitation:

." The seraph Abdiel faithful found
Among the faithless, faithful only 'he;
Among innumerable false, unmovid,
Unshaken, unseduc'd unterrify'd,
His loyalty he kept, his love his zeal;
Nor number, nor example with him wrought
To swerve from truth, or change his constant mind
Though single. From amidst them forth he pass'd
Long way through hostile scorn, which he sustain'd
Superior, nor of violence fear'd ought;
And with retorted scorn his back he turn'd
On those proud tow'rs to swifi destruction doom'd.

Gladly then he mix'd
With his own friendly pow'rs, who him receiv'd
With joy and acclamation loud, that one
That of so many myriads fall'n, yet one
Return'd not lost. On to the sacred hill
They led him high-applauded, and present
Before the seat supreme ; from whence a voice,
From 'midst a golden cloud thus mild was heard :
s« Servant of God, well done, well hast thou fought
The better fight, who single hast maintain'd
Against revolted multitudes the cause
Of truth, in word mightier than they in arms;
And for the testimony of truth hast borne
Universal reproach, far worse to bear
Than violence; for this was all thy care
To stand approv'd in sight of God, though worlds
Judg'd thee perverse."

From all these considerations it is evident, that there are times and circuinstances, when if a inan will be truly religious, and preserve an unshaken fidelity to his Creator and his Saviour, he must be singular; he must step aside; he must beg to be excused in a variety of cases. He must be singular, or lose his soul. Let not the fear of this odious imputation deter any man from exemplary piety. The giddy multitude, and the sons and daughters of pleasure, falsely so called, may pretend to sneer and deride; but yet notwithstanding, they will secretly applaud your virtuous conduct. There is a certain dignity, a real nobility, a secret charm, in a consistently religious character, which none can despise.(3) And sooner or later, the whole human race will be of one opinion concerning it.

Instead of being heroes in wickedness then, or ringleaders in the cause of infidelity, for there are not a few who make a mock at sin, and glory in their shame, let it be your highest ambition to become Christian heroes;(4) heroes who can forgive, and love, and bless your enemies; who can conquer the world, and all your own degenerate propensities; heroes, whose heads are big only with schemes of mercy and of kindness; whose hands are continually stretched out in prayer and acts of benevolence! and who are never at ease, but in going about doing good to the bodies and souls of men; heroes(5) in whom religion

(3) Peterborough, more famed for wit than religion, when he lodged with Fenelon at Cambray, was so charmed with his piety and virtue, that he exclaimed at parting: - If I stay here any longer I shall become a Christian in spite of myself.”

(4) Steel's Christian Hero, is a little book worth the attention of the reader who is disposed to reject the gospel. It contains an argument to prove, that no principles but those of religion are sufficient to make a great man. In this little book we have a com. parison between the characters of Cato and Cæsar, Brutus and Cassius, Jesus Christ and Paul. These heathens make but a very poor figure, when placed by the side of these Christian heroes

(5) One of the most illustrious heroes that England ever bred, a man equally celebrated for valour, for genius, and for learning, was not ashamed to address his wife in the views of approaching dissolution in the following pious strain :-- Love God, and begin betimes. In him you shall find true, everlasting, and endless com. fort. When you have travelled and wearied yourself with all sorts of worldly cogitations, you shall sit down by sorrow in the end. Teach your son also to serve and fear God whilst he is young, that the fear of God may grow up in him. Then will God be an hus.

sits, as it were, in triumph, with all the passions in subjection around her; with all the lustre that wisdom, and prudence, and piety, and learning, and good sense, and good breeding, can bestow to make you amiable; heroes in short, whose daily endeavour is to clothe the naked, to feed the hungry, to visit the sick, to instruct the ignorant, to be a father to the fatherless, a husband to the widows, and a friend to. the friendless of all parties and denominations of men. If such is your heroism, the ear will bless when it hears you; the eye will give witness when it sees you; the blessing of him that is ready to perish will come upon you; and the widow's heart will dance in your presence for joy. Simple as this account may seem, it is an heroism to which few, comparatively, ever attain, or of which they have any idea. It will require all your fortitude, and the utmost stretch of your best powers. In pursuing such a line of conduct, in conjunction with your temporal occupation, you will be employed usefully and comfortably while you live, and you will be training up for “ the general assembly, and church of the first-born which are written in heaven," when you die. “ Be strong in the Lord, then, and in the power of his might. Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. Fight the good fight of faith, and lay hold on eternal life.” Let the advice of Locke, which is both wise and seasonable, be acceptable in your eyes. It will assuredly do you no harm, and if you pay due attention to it, it will do you eternal good. He himself was an example of his own precepts. For fourteen or fifteen years he applied himself closely to the study of the Holy Scripture, and employed the last period of his life hardly in any

band to you, and a father to him, an husband and a father that can never be taken from you."

This is true heroism! Such was Sir Walter Raleigh.

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thing beside.

He was never weary of admiring the grand views of that sacred book, and the just relation of all its parts.

He every day made discoveries in it, that gave him fresh cause of adiniration. And so earnest was he for the comfort of his friends, and the diffusion of sacred knowledge among them, that even the day before he died “he particularly exhorted all about him to read the Holy Scriptures, exalting the love which God shewed to man in justifying him by faith in Jesus Christ, and returning him special thanks for having called him to the knowledge of that divine S. viour.' To a person who asked hiin, which was the shortest and surest way for a young gentleman to attain to the true knowledge of the Christian religion, in the full and just extent of it, he replied "Let him study the Holy Scripture, especially the New Testament. Therein are contained the words of eternal life. It hath God for its author Salvation for its end—and Truth, without any mixture of error, for its matter.(6)”

This is a noble testimony, both in life and in death, from this Christian philosopher. Many hundreds of a similar nature might be laid before the reader, besides those which we have already selected. And

(6) Lavater, after predicting, like Newton and Hartley, the spread of infidelity, thus expresses himself concerning the truth of the gospel: “If God has not spoken and acted through Christ, then there never has been a God who hath acted and spoken. If Christ is the work of chance, then man and the whole world is the work of chance also. If Christ did not want the assistance of a God to the performance of his wonderful deeds. nature also can perform her works without the interference of a God."

Compare with the above the death-bed scene of Garzo, the grand father of Petrarch, who was so celebrated for his probity and good sense, that he was frequently consulted by philosophers, and the learned of those times. After living to the age of 104. in innocence and good works, he died, as Plato did, on the day of his birth, and in the bed in which he was born His death resembled a quiet sleep. He expired, surrounded by his family, without pain or uneasiness, while he was conversing about God and virtue."

there is no kind of reading, that is so edifying, as the final scenes of those persons, who have been eminent in their day, either for their virtues or their vices. A death bed is usually a detector of the heart. And to see a fellow mortal in the ruins of nature, glorying over the King of Terrors, in all his most horrible forms, is by far the grandest spectacle that can be exhibited upon earth. It is, as Seneca observes of Cato, a sight worthy of God to look down upon. What are all the triumphs of kings and conquerors, when compared with the triumphs of abundance of the children of the Most High in all ages? The Bible contains a rich compendium of these religious worthies. The Book of Martyrs records a noble army of valiant souls, who went through fire and water, through racks and tortures, to their blood-bought reward.

So far as I myself am concerned, whether it shall please the gracious Ruler of the world to call me hence by a storm of persecution, by the enmity of secret adversaries, or in the natural course of Providence, I, above all things upon earth, desire to quit this mortal scene in a fiery chariot of divine love, and heavenly rapture. The celebrated Scaliger was so delighted with that stanza of Sternhold and Hopkins in the 18th psalm :

* On Cherub and on Cherubim

Full royally he rode ;
And on the wings of mighty winds

Came Aying all abroad:". that he used to profess, he had rather have been the author of it, than to have enjoyed the kingdom of Arragon.

I have seen so many lukewarm Christians quit the world in such a doubting, timorous, uncomfortable, miserable manner, that I solemnly declare I had rather, if it please God, take my leave of this earthly tabernacle with my faith, hope, love, peace, and joy in full exercise, and go with all my sails unfurled into

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