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regarded only as schools of thought and life, and while a man perfers one for his own instruction, he may yet believe it is more profitable for his brethren differently constituted to be in others. It will then be seen that God takes too good care of his children to suffer all truth to be confined to any one church establishment, age, or constellation of minds, and it will be not only assented to in words, but believed in soul, that the Laws and Prophets may be condensed, as Jesus said, into this simple law, “ Love God with all thy soul, thy fellow-man as thyself;" and that he who is filled with this spirit and strives to express it in life, however narrow cut be his clerical coat, or distorting to outward objects, no less than disfiguring to himself, his theological spectacles, has not failed both to learn and to do some good in this earthly section of existence. When this much has once been granted ; when it is seen that the only true, the only Catholic Church, the Church whose communion, invisible to the outward eye, is shared by all spirits that seek earnestly to love God and serve Man, has its members in every land, in every Church, in every sect; and that they who have not this, in whatever tone and form they cry out, “ Lord, Lord,” have in truth never known Him; then may we hope for less narrowness and ignorance in the several sects, also, for all and each will learn of one another, and dwelling together in unity still preserve and unfold their life in individual distinctness. Such a platform we hope to see ascended by the men of this earth, of this or the coming age. At any rate, disengagement from present bonds, must lead to it, and thus we trust, the Wesleys have embraced William Law and found that bis “ poisonous mysticism” had its truth - and its meaning also, while he rejoices that their minds, severing from his, took a dif. ferent bias and reached a different class for which his teachings were not adapted. And thus, passing from section to section of the truth, the circle shall be filled at last, and it shall be seen that each had need of the other and of all.
Charles and John Wesley seemed to fulfil toward their great family of disciples the offices commonly assigned to Woman and Man. Charles had a narrower, tamer, less reasoning mind, but great sweetness, tenderness, facility and lyric flow, “When suc. cessful in effecting the spiritual good of the most abject, his feel. ings rose to rapture.” Soft pity filed his heart, and none seemed so near to him as the felon and the malefactor, because for none else was so much to be done.
His habitual flow of sacred verse was like the course of a full fed stream. In extreme old age, his habits of composition are thus pleasingly described :
“He rode every day (clothed for Winter, even in Summer,) a little horse, grey with age. When he mounted, if a subject struck him, he proceeded to expand and put it in order. He would write a hymn thus given him on a card (kept for that purpose) with his pencil in short hand. Not unfrequently he has come to the house on the City road, and having left the pony in the garden in front, he would enter, crying out 'Pen and ink! pen and ink! These being supplied, he wrote the hymn he had been composing. When this was done, he would look round on those present, and salute them with much kindness, ask after their health, give out a short hymn, and thus put all in mind of eternity. He was fond of that stanza upon these occasions,
“There all the ship’s company meet,” &c. His benign spirit is, we believe, gratified now by finding that company larger than he had dared to hope.
The mind of John Wesley was more masculine ; he was more of a thinker and leader. He is spoken of as credulous, as hoping good of men naturally, and able to hope it again from those that had deceived him. This last is weakness unless allied with wise decision and force, generosity when it is thus tempered. To the character of John Wesley it imparted a persuasive nobleness, and hallowed his earnestness with mercy. He had in a striking degree another of those balances between opposite forces which mark the great man. He kept himself open to new inspirations, was bold in apprehending and quick in carrying them out. Yet with a resolve once taken he showed a steadiness of purpose beyond what the timid scholars of tradition can conceive.
In looking at the character of the two men, and the nature of their doctrine we well understand why their spirit has exercised so vast a sway, especially with the poor, the unlearned and those who had none else to help them. They had truth enough and force enough to uplift the burdens of an army of poor pil. grims and send them on their way rejoicing. We should delight to string together, in our own fashion, a rosary of thoughts and anecdotes illustrative of their career and its consequences, but, since time and our limits in newspaper space forbid, cannot end better than by quoting their own verse, for they are of that select corps, “ the forlorn hope of humanity,” to whom shortcoming in deeds has given no occasion to blush for the lofty scope of their words.
“Who but the Holy Ghost can make
A genuine gospel minister,
Of precious souls the awful care ?
A sinner sinners to convert,
And bless him with a pastor's heart.”