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70 cannot. But we set not up this attainment against his energy, we know that it is useful only in dependence
We know, too, why the ignorant are frequently exalted in the scale of usefulness, to show that 'the
power is not of man, but of God;' and that no flesh 75 should glory in his presence.' But has he not blessed
talents also, for the same important purpose ? Has he never employed eloquence usefully? Has his favour been uniformly limited, or ever limited to the illiterate ?
Because he sometimes works without the means, and 80 apparently in defiance of the means, are we therefore
to lay them aside ? Who possessed more advantages, or more eloquence than the apostle, whose words are alluded to in this objection ? Did Paul make a worse
preacher for being brought up at the feet of Gamaliel ! 85 But the gospel of Jesus disdains such assistance:
for the apostle says to the Corinthians, "I came not to you with excellency of speech :'--' and my speech, and my preaching, was not with enticing words of men's
wisdom.' That the gospel of Jesus disdains the assis90 tance of eloquence, in a certain sense, I admit. It will
not accept of any thing as its support.
Its beauty eclipses every charm brought in comparison 95 with it. Yet, is this a reason why, in enforcing its
glorious truths upon our fellow-men, we should disdain assistance which, although it aids not the gospel, is useful to them? Follow the opposite principle, and
lay aside preaching. The gospel approves itself to the 100 conscience ; every attempt to illustrate and enforce it
is useless, when applied to the truth itself, for it cannot be rendered more excellent than it is : yet it may be rendered more perspicuous to our fellow-men, it needs
enforcing as it regards them; and preaching has been 105 instituted by God himself for that express purpose. So
eloquence cannot render assistance to the gospel itself; but may be useful to those who attend it. True eloquence has for its object, not merely to please, but to
render luminous the subject discussed, and to reach 110 the hearts of those cencerned.
It stands upon
We live in a day when it becomes us to be equal every way to our adversaries.
This we never can be, if we cherish a contempt for liberal science. Infidelity
lifts her standard, and advances, with daring front, to 115 'defy the armies of the living God.' Distinguished
talents rally around her ensign. The charms of eloquence, the force of reason, the majesty of literature, the light of science, are all enlisted under her banner;
are all opposed to the truth as it is in Jesus. Let us, 120 in reliance upon divine aid, meet them upon equal
terms, contend with them on their own ground, turn against them their own weapons ! Let us meet them in the plain, or upon the mountain ; let us ascend to their
elevation, or stoop to their level! Let us oppose sci125 ence to science, eloquence to eloquence, light to light,
energy to energy! Let us prove that we are their equals in intellect, their colleagues in literature : but that, in addition to this, One is our master, even Christ,'
that we have a more sure word of prophecy,'--and 130 that our light, borrowed from the fountain of illumina
tion, will shine with undiminished lustre, when their lamp, fed only by perishable, precarious supplies, shall be for ever extinguished !
One Sunday, as I travelled through the county of Orange, my eye was caught by a cluster of horses tied near a ruinous, old, wooden house, in the forest, not far
from the road-side. Having frequently seen such ob5 jects before, in travelling through these states, I had no
difficulty in understanding that this was a place of religious worship Devotion alone should have stopped me, to join in the duties of the congregation; but I
must confess, that curiosity to hear the preacher of such 10 a wilderness, was not the least of my motives.
On entering the house, I was struck with his preternatural appearance. He was a tall and very spare old man--his head, which was covered with a white linen cap; his shrivelled hands, and his voice, were all shaken,
15 under the influence of a palsy, and a few moments as
certained to me that he was perfectly blind. The first emotions which touched my breast, were those of min gled pity and veneration. But ah ! How soon were all
my feelings changed! It was a day of the administra20 tion of the sacrament, and his subject, of course, was
the passion of our Saviour. I had heard the subject handled a thousand times; I had thought it exhausted
Little did I suppose, that in the wild woods of America, I was to meet with a man whose eloquence 25 would give to this topic, a new and more sublime pathos than I had ever before witnessed.
As he descended from the pulpit, to distribute the mystic symbol, there was a peculiar, a more than hu
man solemnity in his air and manner, which made my 30 blood run cold, 'and my whole frame to shiver. He
then drew a picture of the sufferings of our Saviourhis trial before Pilate-his ascent up Calvary--his crucifixion--and his death. I knew the whole history;
but never, until then, had I heard the circumstances so 35 selected, so arranged, so coloured ? It was all new ;
and I seemed to have heard it for the first time in my life. His enunciation was so deliberate, that his voice trembled on every syllable ; and every heart in the as
sembly trembled in unison. 40 His peculiar phrases, had that force of description,
that the original scene appeared to be, at that moment, acting before our eyes. We saw the very faces of the Jews--the staring, frightful distortions of malice and
rage. We saw the buffet--my soul kindled with a 45 flame of indignation, and my hands were involuntarily
and convulsively clenched. But when he came to touch the patience, the forgiving meekness of our Saviour-when he drew, to the life, his blessed eyes stream
ing in tears to heaven-his voice breathing to God, a 50 soft and gentle prayer of pardon on his enemies, " Fa
ther, forgive them, for they know not what they do,”. the voice of the preacher, which had all along faultered, grew fainter and fainter, until his utterance being
entirely obstructed by the force of his feelings, he rais55 ed his handkerchief to his eyes, and burst into a loud
and irrepressible flood of grief. The effect was inconceivable. The whole house resounded with the mingled groans, and sobs, and shrieks of the congregation.
It was some time before the tumult had subsided, so 60 far as to permit him to proceed. Indeed, judging by
the usual, but fallacious standard of my own weakness, I began to be very uneasy for the situation of the preacher. For I could not conceive, how he would be
able to let his audience down from the height to which 65 he had wound them, without impairing the solemnity
and dignity of his subject, or perhaps shocking them by the abruptness of the fall. But the descent was as beautiful and sublime, as the elevation had been rapid
and enthusiastic. 70 The first sentence with which he broke the awful silence, was a quotation from Rousseau :
66 Socrates died like a philosopher, but Jesus Christ, like a God ! !" Never before did I completely understand what Demosthenes meant by laying such stress on delivery.
JOEL ii.-1 Blow ye the trumpet in Zion, and sound an alarm in my holy mountain : let all the inhabitants of the land tremble : for the day of the Lord cometh, for it is nigh at hand ; 2 A day of darkness and of gloominess, a day of clouds and of thick darkness, as the morning spread upon the mountains : a great people and a strong ; there hath not been ever the like, neither shall be any more after it, even to the years of many generations. 3 A fire devoureth before them; and behind them a flame burneth: the land is as the garden of Eden before them, and behind them a desolate wilderness; yea, and nothing shall escape them. 4 The appearance of them is as the appearance of horses; and as horsemen so shall they
5 Like the noise of chariots on the tops of mountains shall they leap, like the noise of a flame of fire that devoureth the stubble, as a strong people set in battle-array. 6 Before their face the people shall be much pained; all faces shall gather blackness. 7 They shall run
like mighty men; they shall climb the wall like men of war; and they shall march every one on his ways, and they shall not break their ranks : 8 Neither shall one thrust another; they shall walk every one in his path : and when they fall upon the sword, they shall not be wounded. 9 They shall run to and fro in the city ; they shall run - upon the wall, they shall climb up upon the houses ; they shall enter in at the windows like a thief. 10 The earth shall quake before them; the heavens shall tremble: the sun and the moon shall be dark, and the stars shall withdraw their shining: 11 And the Lord shall utter his voice before his army : for his camp is very great: for he is strong that executeth his word: for the day of the Lord is great and very terrible; and who can abide it?
2 SAMUEL i.-17 And David lamented with this lamentation over Saul, and over Jonathan his son : 18 (Also he bade them teach the children of Judah the use of the bow : behold, it is written in the book of Jasher.) 19 The beauty of Israel is slain' upon thy high places : how are the mighty fallen ! 20 Tell it not in Gath, publish it not in the streets of Askelon ; lest the daughters of the Philistines rejoice, lest the daughters of the uncircumcised triumph. 21 Ye mountains of Gilboa, let there be no dew, neither let there be rain upon you, nor fields of offerings : for there the shield of the mighty is vilely cast away, the shield of Saul, as though he had not been anointed with oil. 22 From the blood of the slain, from the fat of the mighty, the bow of Jonathan turned not back, and the sword of Saul returned not empty. 23 Saul and Jonathan were lovely and pleasant in their lives, and in their death they were not divided : they were swifter than eagles, they were stronger than lions. 24 Ye daughters of Israel, weep over Saul, who clothed you in scarlet, with other delights; who put on ornaments of gold upon your apparel. 25 How are the mighty fallen in the midst of the battle ! O Jonathan, thou wast slain in thy high places. 26 I am distressed for thee, my brother Jonathan ; very pleasant hast thou been unto me : thy love