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each otherin someimportant particulars, 1 are groaning beneath a despotism which yet, in their opposition to Jesus, mct as places fetters on the buman mind, stops the on common ground, and for a while for- | march of knowledge, and drags in the dust got their party disputes in the strong feel the reason and the faith, the liberties and ing of hostility which actuated them both

rights of millions ;-or whether the invalua. against that divine Teacher, who exposed

ble blessings of civil and religious freedom

are elevatiog mankind to their proper stathe self-righteons spirit of the one, and

tion, and, under the guidance of Heaven, the scepticism of the other. Sometimes leading them forward to wisdom and happiunited, and sometimes alone, the zealots ness? Whether the fostering beams of truth, of each sect pressed him with a supposed are cheering and fertilizing the moral difficulty, in order to elicit a contradic-world ;-or, under the mists of prejudice tion, involve him in a perplexity, or draw and error, religion languishes, and virtue him into a snare. The words of the withers, and every noxious weed of depra. text were occasioned by something of

vity grows rank? Whether God is visiting this kind; they both came together,

the nations in mercy or in wrath, punishing $and tempting, desired that he would

MCT: | or blessing, giving them up to folly, or

bringing them back to wisdom? Whether shew them a sign from heaven.” They he is lighting up the world with Evangelical had already been favoured with ample doctrine, or removing one after another his evidence of the divine mission of the candlesticks" from the churches ? Oor Saviour-he had given sight to the blind connexion and our sympathies with the grcat and hearing to the deaf; he had cleansed | family of mankind, should, therefore, deeptheir lepers and raised their dead; he | ly interest us in “ the signs of the times." had miraculously fed the hungry and A second reason is, that " we should preached the gospel to the poor ; the pay a becoming regard to the works of winds and the waves had confessed his God.” It is one mark of the wicked power, and the subdued spirits of dark- that they regard not the work of the ness had borne testimony to his divine

Lord, neither consider the operations of mission, Instead, therefore, of yielding 1 his hands.” In marking the course of to their request, he appeals to their rea

events “God is not in all their thoughts:" son and experience, referring them to

- they seek only for second causes, or their ordinary mode of judging of the weather. From this view of the occa- The preacher, on the contrary, strikingly sion of the text, the preacher proceeds, illustrates the absolute control of God by a very natural transition, to apply the lover all human affairs, and by apt quoquestion to his cotemporaries, as an ex

tations from the prophetic writings, pression of very just surprise, “ if, while it has fallen to our lot to live in so event

evinces the superintendance which Jea ful a period of time, we sit down regard

hovah exercises over the concerns of

every individual and every empire. All less of those mighty changes which are

the evolutions of his providence present taking place in almost every part of the

the us with some parts of his plan in a course globe; which are altering the moral and | political aspect of the world, and which

of accomplishment, and are highly de are themselves, in all probability, the

| serving of our notice. He next proceeds

ity, the to remark that precursors of events still more extraordinary.”

" The prophecies of the scripture, also, • To illustrate his subject, Mr. G. pro- necessarily suppose this to be a duty. These ceeds to establish the duty inplied in are to a certain degree, a disclosure of the the text--the duty of attending to the

intentions of God. They relate ultimately signs of the times;- from this he pro

to the state of the church, the interests of ceeds to enquire what are the signs of the

true religion, the kingdom of God amongs, times in which we live? and concludes

men ; and, as far as the great politica with reviewing the subject in its various

changes of this world are connected with

these more important objects, they are practical bearings.

marked in the page of prophecy with more Amongst the various reasons on which I or less distinctness. Sometimes the propos the duty of observing the “signs of the tic spirit fixes on some period in the succes times" is founded, Mr. Godwin first no sion of ages, the important occurences of tices, 6 Our connexion with the great which are presented in a vivid manner" family of mankind.” Here he remarks

the mind of the holy seer, and by him i that

briefly and rapidly sketched, in languages

for the most part, glowing and highly tigo "It ought never to be a matter of indif- | rative. Instances of this occur in the ference to ns, whether our fellow creatures / ings of nearly all the prophets. In

occur in the writ

In other

cases, a compendious view is given, by the | around us, we may be startled into surinspired writers, of the most remarkable | prise and consternation by the bursting empires in succession, from their own time of a tempest of divine judgments; which, to that of tbe world's complete renovation

| if we had observed the gathering clouds by the universal prevalence of the gospel;

and the indications of prophecy, might snch are the visions of the great image, and the four beasts, with their annexed interpre

have found us better prepared. But we tation, recorded in the book of Daniel. But

hasten to notice his illustration of the in the Apocalypse, by a series of prophetic

second head of discourse, in which he descriptions, less uninterrupted and more in specifies the signs of the times in which detail that those which are found in any we live; or, in other words, he shews other part of the sacred writings, we are o what are the prominent features in the conducted from the apostolic age down, moral and political world, which distinthrough succeeding times, to the final tri.

guish the present from any former age, umph of the gospel, and “the end of all things.”

and, comparing them with the propheThese intimations of the future are, I it must be allowed, often clothed with ob

cies of Scripture, what do they indicate?" scurity, but amidst the surrounding dark

The first thing which our author ad. ness we may discern many luminous points. verts to is, “ An extensive communicaWe can understand the general nature of the tion among the several nations of the event, but not every particular connected earth, hitherto unprecedented"-arising with it; we perceive what the great result from discovery, from conquest, and from will be, but not all the circumstances pre commerce. The recent discovery of the ceding and attending it; we know that a

vast continent of America, with the certajo state of things will be produced, but

islands of the West Indies, the immense of the exact time we can only judge, as we

tracts of New Holland, and islands insee, in the general course of things an evident bearing towards the predicted event.

numerable in the Pacific Ocean, are ad. And this accords with the design of pro

verted to, as a peculiar feature of modern phecy, which is not to give us such a clear and times. But another peculiarity of our distinct enumeration of particulars as curi-| times is, “a considerable extension of osity might wish, but which would tend to general knowledge,” in consequence of frustrate the prediction, and might often in which whatever is known by one nation terfere with our obvious duty ; but to afford soon becomes the property of all. By a us such a geueral view of the future, as may

free intercourse with Southern nations, strengthen our confidence in God, support our hopes, and animate us to vigorous exer

Russia, for example, in her position of tion for his cause. Now why is this done

latitude stretching half round the globe, but to excite our attention to what is pass

is fast emerging from semi-barbarism. ing in the world, and to induce us to com And even in those countries where a pare his word and providence together? If wretched despotism and gloomy superGod speaks to us by a precept, he expects stition have lain like weights upon the our implicit obedience; if he addresses us freedom of thought and opinion, the in a promise, he requires our confidence; mind of the people seems rising, with and if a prophecy be the subject of his

| an elastic spring, to an unexpected vigour communications, diligent inquiry to ascer

of action. It is true that numbers, like tain its meaning, and attentive observation to the manner of its accomplishment evi

valleys in the early part of the day, lie dently become our duty. “Blessed is he

still in deep shade, and that, of those who that readeth and they that hear the words

begin to think more actively, the greater of this prophecy;" this is the motto prefixed part yet see dimly, and their views of to the revelation of St. John ; but if we things may be extravagant or fantastic, take no pains to comprehend its meaning, like objects seen by twilight; yet he what blessing can we expect in hearing or must be blind indeed to the events of reading it ; If there are any of the predic- late years, who does not perceive a very tions of scripture now fulfilling in the world,

considerable change in the minds of the and who that has witnessed the events of the

great mass of the people, in many of the last twenty or thirty years can doubt it: how can we understand them without observing

nations of Europe. After illustrating "the signs of the times ?”

these remarks, by shewing how the spirit

of commerce has tended to promote ci. Mr. Godwin closes his first head of vilization, and disseminate the blessings discourse by remarking that “this ob- of knowledge, he thus proceeds : servant state of mind is necessary to al " The important changes which have been proper preparation for the events which effected in old systems of government, which may be coming upon us.” If we are in- were unfavourable to the progress of knowattentive to what is passing in the world ledge and improvement, form another strik, ing feature in the signs of the times. In long the reign of ignorance, and to support noticing these, we shall only take a mere the measures of any superstitious despot, cursory glance at occurrences of this kind, must be considerably diminished by the which have happened within the recollec- suppression of so great a number of them; tion of many of the present congregation and a part of those exorbitant incomes

“It is now about thirty years since which gave to that hierarchy so great a one of the most surprising events which the preponderance, is now appropriated to the history of the world records, took place in service of the state. May Spain learn France. The luxury and corruption of the wisdom from a neighbouring country, and court aod nobles, had arisen to the highest not rush at once from tyranny to anarchy, pitch; the avarice and vicious conduct of nor plunge into the gulf of atheism to avoid the priests had become almost proverbial ; the follies of superstition ! scarcely a vestige of civil liberty remained; Portugal bas adopted similar measures, when the cloud that had been gathering and appears to be treading in the steps of blackness ever since the time of Louis XIV., her neighbour. who repealed the edict of Nantes, burst in “ The foreign dependencies of these awful peals of thunder. A political earth-| kingdoms have felt the same impulse. One quake convulsed the whole empire, and of them preceded the mother country in shook the old fabric of oppression and struggles of this kind; and, as the only superstition into dust. The sun and moon, apparent means of obtaining the object, the royal luminaries of the realm, set in has been for some years endeavouring vioblood; the stars of nobility rushed headlong | lently to tear itself from its connection with from their spheres; and all the elements of Spain : and the other seems peaceably to society were in a chaotic and universal up-| follow the movements of the parent state. roar. Infidelity, let loose on superstition, “And even in Italy public opinion has and mistaking it for Christianity, commen: | been evidently working; though the atced an anti-crusade, and emulated the tempts which have been recently made to fanatic spirit of that religion, which march- obtain the blessings of freedom have been ed in blood to the holy sepulchre, and sung rendered abortive, by a formidable combia Te Deum for the achievements of St. nation of sovereigns on the one hand, and Bartholomew's day. Atheism then had in by pasillanimity on the other. its turn an inquisition, and on a large scale ! " And lastly, Greece, with its fine procelebrated its auto-da-fe. After a number / vinces, once the very land of freedom, and of changes, in the progress of which it had famed for its learning and civilization, its nearly subjugated all Europe, France ap- beroes and its sages; and still more deserv.. pears to be settling down into a calm, with | edly famed, as having been the scene of a constitutional monarchy, which recog-l apostolic labours, where some of the first

igots of conscience, gives a char- and most flourishing Christian churches ter of liberty, and sanctions, or at least to were planted, --is on the eve of some great lerates, the operations of Lancasterian change; or rather, is rushing into a tremena Schools, and of the British and Foreign | dous conflict with those fanatic and impeBible Society. In bursting these barriers | rious lords, who have so long and so crueny to improvement and happiness, the soaring tyrannized over it. It is certainly remark. deluge spread wide and

evastatio

able, that Constantinople, once the second vet. however we shudder at the means and city of the civilized world,

i and city of the civilized world, which, in 165 manner of their removal, we are thankful I hard destinies. still bears the name of the they are in a considerable measure gone. | first Roman einperor that embraced the No one, however highly he values the im- | Christian faith, should have been nearly proved state of that country, can think | four centuries under the power, and during without horror on those revolutionary this time the very seat, of a government scenes; nor can any one, however deep which is identified with the most astonishing be his indignation at the transactions of religious imposture the world ever saw: those times, refuse to acknowledge, that in whose actuating spirit is fanaticism, whose many important respects, the present is far | element is ignorance, and wbicb, extenans preferable to the former condition of over so considerable a portion of the popis France under the old regime.

lation of the globe, presents a greater 00 “And still more recently, Spain, formed stacle to the progress of Christianity by nature to be a great nation, but en- / all the varieties of Paganism. What slaved and degraded by superstition and be the issue of this perilous strife, in W. despotism, seems rising from the dust, the motto of each party isExterminations throwing off her fetters, and ardent for it scarcely can be imagined more unfavou improvement. The tribunal of the Inqui- | able to the advancement of knowledge a sition, that bloodiest fang of Antichrist, is piety, than its past condition for annibilated : the intluence of those esta- centuries. Perhaps the time approac blishments which maintained a portion of when this unsightly mass of ignorance, the community separated from the rest by barbarism, and delusion, wbich is incapa their monastic vows, which served to pro of reform, and unsusceptible of improve

atever which

bou.

ment shall be removed from Europe. In | Snuday schools were first established, by fact, the whole world almost seems on a which many thousands, who would otherwise ferment; the generality of the people have been uninstructed, are taught to read panting for an improved state of society.” | the Bible, to venerate the sabbath, and to

We have extended this extract, in or-acquire habits of morality, while endeavours der to give our readers a fair specimen

are made to sow in their minds the seeds of

genuine piety. Such is the interest taken of the author's style and manner of

in these important institutions, that a Sunday treating his subject; and, had we no other

school is considered, generally, as a necesfruits of his pen, it was surely sufficient

sary appendage to every church and chapel. to stamp his merit and elevate him to Added to which, are numerous societies, of the rank of one of the very first writers no small consequence to the interests of of the age. But there are many parts piety and virtue, which are designed to of his discourse which display equal

promote Christian knowledge among the ability, and abundantly justify what we

poor, to give their children the rudiments have said of it. In glancing at the un

of education gratis, to circulate religious usual spirit of zeal which has lately been

tracts, to supply the army and navy with

Bibles, and to call the attention of the Jews manifested to enlighten and bless the

to the claim of Christianity. In a word, human race, Mr. Godwin is led to spe

benevolence and piety have been continucify the various Societies that have been ally taxing ingenuity to devise means and formed within the last thirty years, and plans to render education and Christianity here we meet with the following re general over the whole globe. Within the marks :

last thirty years, at how many points, hi

therto considered impregnable, has the em“The coast of Africa, whose sable sons have suffered so much wrong from Euro- |

pire of darkness been invaded, and at none

without some degree of success.” peans, is now visited, in some few points of its vast extent, by the messengers of peace; In a subsequent part of his discourse, and the streams of the water of life have , Mr. Godwin enumerates among the been conducted considerably into the inte signs of the times, rior, to bless and purify its uncultivated tribes, In Indostan, and many of the Asia. “A determined conflict of opposite princitic islands, the servants of Christ are not ples, which seems to forbid accomodation only delivering oral instruction, but are till one side or the other gain a complete giving permanence to their labours, and ascendency. It was not to be expected that laying the foundation of future usefulness to the kingdom and power of darkness would an unknown extent, by translating the Scrip. / be subverted without a struggle. The Christures into all the principal languages and tian world is now rising from its supineness, dialects of that extensive region. The ora and not content merely with defence, is ad. cles of truth at length speak even the lan vancing forward in bold and vigorous attack guage of China. In the islands of the Pa-, on all its “strong holds.” It was natural cific ocean, the indefatigablelabourers, after therefore to expect an animated resistance, a series of continued exertions amidst the The contest is now become general along greatest discouragements, have had the the whole line; battle is joined at every pleasure of beholding the distruction of point. Let us notice a few of these, and beidols, the demolition of their temples, and gin where the proud standard of Infidelity the savage chiefs, with their people, em- is waving in defiance of the banner of the bracing the religion of purity and love. Few Cross. Amidst the frenzies of the French indeed, at present, are these “lights of the revolution, Atheism erected its dreadful world," and thinly scattered over the wide form, and stalked through the land with expanse of pagan gloom, but happily for ) Anarchy for its companion ; its admirers, those who are in the region and shadow of however, soon recoiled at the sight of so death,” their number is increasing. Within unnatural a monster, and in its stead a spe. these few years, the British and Foreign cies of Deism was introduced. The soi disans Bible Society has been brought into action, philosophers of the day sang its triumphs, a machine of wonderful power, and almost and anticipated its speedy and universal unlimited efficiency, in distributing divine reign. One of the most powerful and en. knowledge. Like the long-famed tree of lightened states of Europe rejecting the India, it has shot forth its branches, which, Bible with supreme contempt, converting laking root and sending forth others, have | the edifices of religious worship into the become almost innumerable. In one respect, meanest purposes, destroying as much as however, it differs from the mighty banian, possible every vestige and every recollecas it is not confined to one country, but ex tion of Christianity, was a phenomenon tends its connexions across seas and over among the nations of Europe as astonishing continents, and flourishes in rigours of the at it was new. The effects of this were frigid climes, and under the burning heat of strongly felt, and are still felt over the whole equatorial suns. It is scarcely 40 years since continent. Infidelity became emboldened, VOL. VITT.

M

and, with its most subtle as well as most filled up! Contemplating the removal popular array of objections, came from its of the Halls, and the Kinghorns, and the concealment. The strife has been ever since | Fosters, and a few others, we have somemaintained with new vigour, and if scepti- I times been tempted to fear that the Bapcism has been foiled in some cases, it has

tist denomination would sink into obsucceeded in others. It has found its way into colleges, sat in the professor's chair,

scurity; but when we unexpectedly meet spoken from the pulpit, and artfully insinu

with such writers as Mr. Gibbs and Mr. ated itself into theological disquisitions and Godwin, and others of equal promise, commentaries. But Christianity has still rising into notice,though residing at a dismaintained her ground, and made advances, tance from the metropolis, it gladdens our though attacked at every point, and with hearts to find that the mantle of Elisha every weapon, with low scurrility, bold has been caught in his ascent--we still blasphemy, ingenious perversions, and learn

hope to find the Baptists maintaining ing misapplied. We fear not, however, for

the respectability of past ages, among the issue of this contest, nor desire the interference of the civil authorities; no fines or

the different classes of professors-we jails are necessary to support the interests

thank God and take courage. of true religion.

66 Popery and the principles of Protes. tantism are again grappling. His holiness

Sermons adapted for Parochial and Dohas trembled on his papal throne, at the mestic Use. By the late Rev. J. P. combined and unprecedented exertions of Hewlett, M. A. Chaplain of MagdaProtestants, to disseminate bibles, and to len and New Colleges, and Curate of establish schools. His old auxiliaries, the

St. Mary Aldate's, Oxford. London, Jesuits, have been called to his aid, and

Simpkin and Marshall. 1821. pp. 450, actively employed; bulls and rescripts have been issued; the Romish clergy have

8vo. pr. 10s. 6d. bds. been diligent, and in many cases violent | Tus volume comprises twenty-nine in their opposition ; but still the stream of Sermons on important subjects, preached divine knowledge proceeds, and widens as by the author whose name they bear; it goes. Priestly doinination will lose its I and, as we are informed by a short adinfluence as education extends; and error vertisement prefixed to it signally bless. must at length vanish, like a mist of the

| ed in having been instrumental in turnmorning, before the brightness of divine truth."

ing many from the error of their ways

unto the living God, and encouraging But we must desist: we have said Christians to persevere amidst the diffienough and quoted enough to excite culties and trials which attend their universal interest among our readers to course. The doctrinal sentiment which this admirable discourse, and we there- pervades the volume is strictly evanfore take our leave of it with a few re- gelical, and the ninth Sermon, which is flections.

from Luke xix. 10, “ For the Son of man We cannot part with the author of is come to seek and to save that which this Discourse without tendering him was lost," presents us with a very pleasour unfeigned thanks for the pleasure ing specimen of Mr. Hewlett's views of it has afforded us, and expressing our divine truth, and his happy manner of fervent wish that we may soon meet him stating them. In illustrating the afagain with some more elaborate publi- | fecting truth which is implied in the cation, in defence of those excellent prin- text, he leads his hearers back to Paraciples which he holds. In this day of dise, surveys the state of Adam as formpoverty and destitution of talent, the de- ed by his great Creator in his own image nomination to which he belongs greatly in righteousness and true holiness, faneed his exertions ! · For our own parts, voured with constant and intimate comwhen we look around us in the metropolis, munion with him, and furnished by his and compare the existing state of things beneficent hand with all that could dewith what it was in the days of our light the senses—but, seduced by the youth, we could like the Jews, when subtle snares of the devil, Adam cast off they beheld how inferior the second his allegiance to his Maker by disobeytemple was to that which their fathers the divine command, and thus, not only had to boast--we could weep over the lost his original righteousness, but in. desolations which time has produced. volved all his posterity in his fall. “ By Alas! the Gills, and the Macgowans, one man sin entered into the world and the Stennets, and the Booths—they and by his disobedience many were made have left us, and their places are not sinners"'--not only subjected to death, but

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