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the necessity of atonement, a propitiatory sacrifice for sin ;-divine influence acting upon, without destroying, free agency ;- the admission of evil, and permission of wickedness, in a world under the dominion of a wise and righteous Governor ;-these are doctrines, the certainty of which we know; “ for God hath revealed them unto us by his Spirit”—that Spirit which “searcheth all things, yea the deep things of God;" and which we are therefore to embrace without doubt or gainsaying :--but they are points which never have been, and never can be, perfectly and satisfactorily explained; and therefore, perhaps, the less we say of them the better. But if, by mystery, be meant a doctrine to be implicitly believed on the authority of the priest, or prelate, the presbytery, or the synod, though revolting to common sense, and refuted by reason; or repugnant to the spirit, if not to the letter,-to the manifest design and end of the Gospel-(which is unquestionably this-on faith to engraft virtue)—if these be your secret things, let such mysteries be indignantly cast “to the land of darkness and the shadow of death,"_"and where the light is as darkness !” O cripple not, with the dead weight of superstition, “the feet” so “ beautiful upon
mountains," of those who would “preach the Gospel of peace, and bring glad tidings of good things!” Retard not, with the clumsy machinery of man, the rapid flight of the divine Angel of the covenant, who else would“ take the wings of the morning, remain in the uttermost parts of the" west, and fill the whole “ earth with the knowledge of the glory of the Lord, as the waters cover the sea.'
In the beginning this was the mandate of God
“ Let there be LIGHT :"-In the fulness of time, a bright light, as a moving star, pointed out the birth-place of Him, who was to give light and life to the world. The Spirit of knowledge and wisdom descended on the heads of the first teachers of sacred truth, in the form of lambent flame. The appearance of the glorified Redeemer, to his last peculiarly elected apostle, was preceded by “ light from heaven, above the brightness of the sun.” And, at the great consummation of all things, He shall descend in light,-in the dazzling glory of his Father, to judge mankind."
Intellectual obscurity, delusion, and darkness, are the precursors of Him, who " was a liar from the beginning:"—He sends forth, from his bot
tomless pit, the idol, SUPERSTITION, dignified with the title, and usurping the authority of RELIGION; -armed “ with all power, and signs, and lying wonders ;" clothed in gorgeous habiliments; encompassed by crosses, images, and consecrated relics ; and followed by a long procession of priests, monks, and pilgrims. The kings of the earth bend to her sway, and become her servile tools and vassals, in .forging fetters for the nations; and her prime ministers, Ignorance and Bigotry, are consecrated teachers, and high priests of her temple : But Infidelity lurks under her altars ;- and mark the name branded on her forehead," MYSTERY, mother of abominations !" How unlike to this gaudy sorceress is the bright Messenger of Grace she personates! Divine RELIGION descends from above :-—not, as her counterfeit, disguised with ornaments ;-tricked out in scarlet and purple, loaded with gems, enveloped in clouds of incense, and intoxicated with “ the wine of violence,”—but meek, modest, unadorned,- lowly in heart and in mien : No princes and pontiffs crowd her train ;-her attendants are the simple fishers of the lake,—the obnoxious tax-gatherer of Galilee,- the laborious tent-maker of Tarsus ;-yet hath she a sacred guard ; for “ RIGHTEOUSNESS AND EQUITY" accompany her steps; “MERCY AND TRUTH go before her face.” On her ample brow is engraven,
“ SALVATION !"--and in her hand she bears the covenant of redemption, inscribed in characters of living flame, “that he who runs may read”— “I AM THE LIGHT OF THE WORLD: He that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the LIGHT OF LIFE.”
ON THE RESURRECTION.
IN TWO PARTS. PART I.
JOHN, CHAP. V. VER. 28, 29.
“ The hour is coming, in the which all that are in the graves
shall hear his voice, and shall come forth ; they that have done good, unto the resurrection of life ; and they that have done evil, unto the resurrection of damnation.”
If we were to judge only from the evidence of our senses, without listening to the voice of nature within us, and the concurring sentiments of every people in the world, we should be very apt to suspect that the grave, which enclosed the mortal body, swallowed up and extinguished the entire man.
Every material form, every substance, whether animal or vegetable, endowed with the principle of life, a principle we can