Page images

Some of the patients in very advanced stages of consumption, after inhaling this gus a dozen times, threw up in the expectoration turber. (les which had been detached from the lung-and the diseased parts being thus removed, the lungs healed and again become healthy.Should this statement, which now rests on the authority of M. Cotteren and several other respectable physicians, be true, we may congratulate the faculty on a discovery which in many cases must prove an incalculable blessing.--Dublin Liturgy.

Expensive work.-Mr. Audubon, in his late stop in Boston, obtained eight additional subscribers to bis work “ The Birds of America," at $800 each, $6,400. He has proceeded to the Bay of Funday.

Natural Curiosity.- Isaac Simon, an Indian of the Marshpee tribe is becoming white. He is about sixty five years of age, and we une derstand was born of parents who had no mixture of white or African blood.-He was as dark colored as any of his tribe till about S years ago, when several small spots of white appeared on his legs and arms. These have since extended and now cover a large part of his body. The spots are of a pallid white without any tinge of red. He enjoys good health ; the change of his color was not attended with a sensible disease. - Barnstable Journal.

AGENTS. Ruode-ÍSLAND. Providence- Yates & Richmond, No. S, Market square. Pawtucket, (North Providence)-Joseph McIntire, Bookseller.

MASSACHUSETTS. Boston-Dea. James Loring, Bookseller, No. 132, Washington-street. Taunton-Deacon John Reed. Neu-Bedford-Stephen Potter. Reading-James Weston Jr. AmherstThomas Hervy. Falmouth-Capt. Silas Weeks. CONNECTICUT. Ashford-Rev. Israel G. Rose. New-York. Paris-Charles Simmons. NEW-JERSEY. Newark.-Amos Holbrook.

All those ministers, who receive the Magazine, are authorized and requested to act as agents.

Published at Rehoboth Village. Mass, by Rev. Otis Thompson, Editor and Proprietor.

PostagE OF THIS Paper. Under 100 miles, 1 cent: Over 100 miles 1 1-2 cents.

DR. THOMPSON'S CELEBRATED EYE-WATER. “The best article for curing sore and inflamed Eyes, that was ever

invented.” Extract of a letter from Dr. Paul Swift, M. D.: NANTUCKET, 6th mo. 1914, 1821.-Dr. I. Thompson: I have lately made use of a dozen or two phials of thy Eye-Water in my practice, and I find it of superior efficacy in most cases of Ophthalmia.

PAUL SWIFT, M. D. Similar recommendations have been published by Dr. Vine Utley, of Lime, Conn.; Dr. G. W. Hoppin, of Providence, R. I., and others.

For sale by Dr. J. H. Mason & Co., Providence, R. I., and other Druggists, in various places.

July 31.



October 31, 1832.

[NO. 15.


When God sont Ezekiel to prophecy or preach to the chil. dren of Israel, he did not excuse him from giving the most plain and faithful exhibitions of diring trutlı, bccauco of thoir wioli. edness, and unwillingness to hear it; but he commanded him to go, and deliver his messages from time to time, and to speak the very words which were put into his mouth, whether they would hear or forbear. Indeed he was commanded to go, and say, "Thus saith the Lord; He that heareth, let him hear; and he that forbeareth, let him forbear.'

The instructions, which God gave to Ezekiel, will doubtless apply to the ministers of the gospel. They are under obligation to preach the preaching which God has bidden them, whether men will hear or forbear; and God says to those, to whom the gospel is preached, 'He that heareth, let him hear; aud he that forbeareth, let him forbear.' He is willing that mankind should choose or act for themselves, under the light of the gospel, whether they embrace or rejeet it.

In order for men to choose or act for themselves, it is not necessary for them to act independently. It is impossible to conceive how any dependant or finite being can act independently. Every created being is dependant in his own nature.No created being can act independently, any more than he can exist independently. He is just as dependant upon God for action as for existence. The apostle Paul, speaking of our dedependence on God, says, For in him we live and move and have our being;'—'we are insufficient of ourselves to think any thing as of ourselves; but our sufficiency is of God.' If every person moves as well as lives, and has his being in God; if he is insufficient of himself to think any thing as of himself, but his sufficiency is of God; then he is just as dependant on God for every action of life, as for life itself. It cannot be necessary, therofore, for mankind, in order to choose or act for them. selves, to act independently.

Nor is it necessary for them, in order to choose or act for themselves, to possess a self-determiuing power, or to originate their own volitins. A self-determining power in man to originate his own volitions, must be a power to act independently; which is absurd. We may just as well suppose that a man is capable of originating his own existence, as that he is capable of originating his own volition. To suppose that a man was capable of originating his own existence, would be the same as to suppose that lie existed before he did exist. The same is true of volition. To suppose that any man originates his own volition, is to suppose that be chooses before he does choose. For, if a man causes his own volitions, he must do it roluntarily; and this must be to choose before he does choose, which is absurd. It cannot be necessary, then, in order to choose or act for themselves, for men to possess a self-determining power, or in other words, that they be the efficient, originating cause of their own volitions, for this is impossible.

But all that is necessary for mankind, in order to choose or act for theinselves, is, that their volitions or acts of choice, should be their own in view of motives. Choice is the opposite of oonotusaint, vi tumpulsivu. When any ono chooses, therefore, he must necessarily act without either constraint or restraint, and he must necessarily choose or act in view of motives. On this ground, a man's act of choice is just as much his own, as if he acted independently of God, or originated his own volitions. In this sense, a man may be said to be just as capable of choosing or refusing, though he does not originate or produce his own volitions, as he may be said to be capable of breathing, though he does not originate or create the air which he breathes. Who will say that a man's breath is not his breath, merely because he does not create the air which inflates his lungs? The hand that holds the pen is sait to be the hand of the writer; but the writer did not create the hand which holds his peu. It is evident, then, that all that is necessary, in order for mankind to choose or act for themselves, is that their acts of choice should be their oren; or, as they must, in their own naiure, be free in view of motives.

In this sense, God is willing that mankind should choose or act for themselves, under the light of the gospel, whether they embrace or reject it. He was willing they should do this in the days of Ezekiel. He sent the prophet to the people of Israel, and commanded him to say, Thus saith the Lord; He that heareth, let him hear; and he that forbeareth, let him forbear.' If God was willing that the children of Israel should choose or act for themselves, whether they received or rejected his word, no reason can be given why he may not be willing that all who sit under the light of the gospel should not do the same.

The truth of this sentiment is evident, because God always intends to treat mankind as moral agents. He always has treated them as moral agents, in all ages of the world. He has presented motives or objects of choice, action, or aversion to their minds, as to the minds of moral agents. He has set before them life and death, a blessing and a curse. He has pointed out to them the blessings which result from obedience to the truth; and he has warned and admonished them of the dreadful consequences of rejecting it. As moral agents, he has

promised eternal salvation and the joys of heaven to the righteous; but has threatened the pains of everlasting death to the w icked. He has, likewise, offered salvation on certain conditions; and he has threatened, that, if they do not comply with those conditions, they shall be destroyed. When Christ comm issioned his apostles to preach the gospel, he said, “ He that believeth, and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned.' Agreeably to this commission, the apostles preached 'repentance toward God, and faith toward our Lord Jesus Christ. When the people of Israel, on the day of Pentecost, cried out, · Men and brethren, what shall we do? Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ, for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.' The same apostle likewise said to Simon the sorcerer, •Repent, therefore, of this thy wickedness, and pray God, if perhaps the thought of thine heart may be forgiven thee.'

God has treated mankind as moral agents, not only by presenting motives and conditions of action to their minds ; but he has done it by actually rewarding them for obedience, and punishing them for disobedience. He punished the unbelieve ing and rebelious Israelites, whose carcasses fell in the wilderness. But, he rewarded Caleb ard Joshua, even in this world, because they believed and obeyed him. The apostle speaks of some, who were set forth as examples to those who should 'after live ungodly, suffering the vengeance of eternal fire.' It is evident, then, that God has always treated mankind as moral agents. But, there can be no propriety in treating mankind as moral agents, if they do not choose or act for themselves, as moral beings, in embracing or rejecting the gospel. If they did not choose or act for themselves, they would not be moral agents, but mere machines. It appears from this very circumstance, that God is willing mankind should choose or act for themselves, whether they embrace, or whether they reject the gospel.

Mankind always have chosen or acted for themselves, when. ever they have embraced, or whenever they have rejected the gospel. Not an instance can be named, in the whole history of the church, in which God ever ccinpelled an individual either to embrace or to reject the gospel. It is true, he has made multitudes willing to embrace the gospel ; but this is the opposite of compulsion. Let any person, who ever embraced the gospel, be asked whether he was conscious of any constraint or compulsion ; and he will answer in the negative. Every person who embraces the gospel is conscious of no constraint or compulsion; but, on the contrary, is conscious that he now receives the gospel just as freely as he before rejected it. So, on the other hand, there is no person on earth, who is conscious of any constraint or compulsion in rejecting the gospel. Sinners, in rejecting the gospel, know, that they act as freely as it is possible for them to act, in the nature of things. But, if

mankind have always acted for themselves, whether they hare embraced or rejected the gospel; God must certainly have been willing they should act for themselves, whether they embraced or rejected the gospel ; just as he was willing that the rebel. lious Israelites should hear or forbear under the preaching of Ezekiel.

It is necessary that mankind should choose or act for themselves, under the light of the gospel, in order that they may be proper objects of praise or blame, reward or punishment. Ju order for moral beings to sustain a moral character, it is necessary for them to choose or act freely. If it were possible for them to act against their will, either in embracing or in rejecting the gospel, they could not sustain a moral character any more than a machine. But, if they did not sustain a moral character, any more than a machine, they could not be proper objects of praise or blame, reward or punishment, any more than a machine. Mankind, however, do sustain a moral char. acter, and are proper objects of praise or biame, reward or punishment; and that they might sustain a moral character, God intended that they should choose or act for themselves, whether they embraced or rejected the gospel of Christ.

God likewise intends that mankind shall sustain the responsibility of those consequences, which result from the choice they make, in embracing or rejecting the gospel. It is for this purpose, that he sets before them“ life and death, blessing and cursing." He intended that the rebellious Israelites should bear the whole responsibility, in the course which they took respecting the prophet Ezekiel, whether they would bear, or whether they would forbear. Accordingly, he told the prophe et to say unto them, . Thus saith the Lord; he that beareth, let him hear; and he that forbeareth let him forbear.' So is it with sinners under the light of the gospel. God commands the gospel to be preached to them, in its length and breadth, with all its conditions, promises and threatenings of rewards and punishments; and he says to them, Here is life and death heaven and hell set before you; take you choice, and abide the consequence! If you choose life you shall live, but if you choose death, you shall die, and your blood shall be upon your own heads! God intends, therefore, that mankind under the light of the Gospel shall reap the fruits of their own choice, either in the eternal blessedness and rewards of heaven, or in the eternal misery and punishment of hell. He intends, that the awful responsibility of these results, shall rest forever upon their own heads. For this reason he is willing they should choose or act for themselves, whether they choose eternal life or eternal death, an eternal blessing or an eternal curse. For this reason he commands every ambassador of Christ to 'preach the preaching which he bids him,' and to say unto those under the light of the gospel, .Thus saith the Lord; he that heareth, let him hear; and he that forbeareth, let him forbear!'

« PreviousContinue »