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a thirst for similar pastimes, and a disrelish for sober realities. Many faithful pastors in the land weep over the growing immoralities occasioned by the influence of cities. Many churches lament the defection of their members, having become worldly in their spirit, and vain in their imaginations, by reason of their frequent intercourse with cities. If such, then, is their influence upon the country, well may the churches, planted throughout the land, feel deeply interested in the moral character of cities, and pray for their conversion to God.
Let our cities become places of holiness: let holiness to the Lord be written upon the heart of every merchant, of every mechanic, of every statesman, of every counsellor, of every officer, upon every hall of legislation, and every splendid edifice; and an influence sweet, holy, and happy, shall go forth to revive the hearts of God's people, to awe and confound opposers, and to dress up the wilderness "like the garden of God."
O, what a scene of grandeur and glory, when the thousands of the saints shall wrestle in the spirit of Jacob for the blessing: when they shall rise up in the spirit of their Master, and display an untiring zeal for the salvation of man! O, what a scene, when the immense erowds of immortal beings, who throng our streets, shall be deeply impressed with the conviction of their accountability!-When every man shall feel that he is acting continually under the eye of God, and in full prospect of the judgment. Let these scenes be realized, and already I see "the holy city, the new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband." And I hear “a great voice out of heaven, saying, Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and he will dwell with them, and they shall be his people, and God himself shall be with them, and be their God." Friends of the Redeemer, the hastening of this blessed consummation depends very much upon your will. God has intrusted great power in your hands. In the revelation of his Son, he has given you that word, which is "as a fire, and like a hammer, that breaketh the rock in pieces." In shedding down a spirit of union, and guiding to the formation of great benevolent associations, he has given you facilities for extended influence hitherto unparalleled. He has given you wealth, and knowledge, and all the means for using these facilities. And in the article of prayer, he has endued you with a power well nigh omnipotent. His condescending language is, "Concerning the work of my hands COMMAND YE ME." I see among you men of wealth, who can count your tens, your fifties, and your hundreds of thousands, all of which has been solemnly consecrated to God. I see among you men of talent," capable of intimidating the col
fective vices of a nation or an age." I see among you men of enterprise, and courage, and resistless perseverance. I see among you men, who have strong confidence in God. And shall these varied powers of resistance and aggression be circumscribed by the walls of individual churches? Shall they not rather be combined for raising a higher and higher tone of moral feeling, and Christian enterprise? Shall they not send a strong, concentrated light into every dark retreat of wickedness? Shall not the tide of dissipation, and crime, that would overflow and mar every thing sacred, be met and turned back? Shall not thousands and tens of thousands on our borders, and in our midst, be rescued from the iron sway of the destroyer, and be saved from going down to the pit? Shall not new temples be opened for their reception? and shall not "God, even our God, be a wall of fire round about them, and a glory in the midst of them?"
Do you ask more particularly, how this shall be done? Plant, for instance, an able and devoted minister in the most degraded portion of our city. Let him employ his time in the cultivation of one thousand of these minds. Let him, by the aid of selfdenying brethren, assemble them in one place on the holy sabbath. Let him visit their houses, and pray with them, every month. Let him collect the children and youth into sabbath schools and bible classes. Let him encourage among them every means of intellectual as well as spiritual elevation; and how astonishing will be the change wrought, even in the course of one year. Instead of being objects of pity, shame, and aversion; many of them become pillars of light, anđ exert a purifying influence upon others. Is not this elevation worth more than all the necessary expenso, even leaving out of the account all the eternal results? Let, then, another and another degraded portion be selected, and in like manner be regenerated and ennobled. Especially let no one who feeds at the table of our common Lord, and lives from week to week on the provisions of his house, refuse, promptly and vigorously to co-operate in the work of mercy, while at soul is perishing in ignorance and sin!
In the mean time, let our civil fathers look well to the execution of laws, which themselves have made, for the suppression of sabbathbreaking and immorality. And let them inquire seriously, Whether all our children and youth may not be brought under the influence of instructers of good character, and other moral restraints, a thousandfold more efficacious, for preventing crime, than statutes, and prisons, and chains.
Our hearts rejoice to see new blocks of buildings going up to decorate our city. But what is that to the present and eternal elevation of these
thousand minds? Should we not then exult in the privilege of lifting all the degraded portions of our city, and of our land, into intellectual and moral grandeur? What object of ambition could there be, equal to that of thus creating an empire of righteousness-a world of intellect? Such monuments of glory shall remain, when earthly governments shall be no more, and the earth itself shall have passed away.
Never, methinks, was the language of God more distinct, than at the present crisis. To the rich he is manifestly saying, “Bring ye all the tithes into the store-house, that there may be meat in my house, and prove me now herewith, if I will not open you the windows of heaven, and pour you out a blessing, that there shall not be room enough to receive it. And I will rebuke the devourer for your sakes; and all nations shall call you blessed." To the ministers of religion, and to all his chosen, he is manifestly saying, "O Zion, that bringest good tidings, get thee up into the high mountain: O Jerusalem, that bringest good tidings, lift up thy voice with strength; lift it up; be not afraid; say unto the cities, Behold your God! Behold the Lord God will come with strong hand, and his arm shall rule for him: behold, his reward is with him, and his work before him." shall build up Zion, he shall appear in his glory. prayer of the destitute, and not despise their prayer. This shall be written for the generation to come: and the people which shall be created, shall praise the Lord. For he hath looked down from the height of his sanctuary, to hear the groaning of the prisoner; to loose those that are appointed to death; to declare the name of the Lord in Zion, and his praise in Jerusalem.”
"When the Lord He will regard the
These are great privileges for God to confer on such worms as we are. Yet God has indeed placed them within reach. And if we will but do our duty here, we are only ripening for infinitely greater privileges and higher honours. He that is faithful over a few things, shall be made ruler over many things. Yes; when all our cities, and the earth itself, and these heavens shall be "wrapt in consuming fire," we may, "with the great multitude found faithful," enter that City, which hath foundations, whose Builder and Maker is God. In that City, "THERE SHALL BE NO MORE CURSE, BUT THE THRONE OF GOD AND THE LAMB SHALL BE IN IT, AND HIS SERVANTS SHALL SERVE HIM. AND THERE SHALL BE NO NIGHT THERE; AND THEY NEED NO CANDLE FOR THE LORD GOD GIVETH THEM
NEITHER LIGHT OF THE SUN
EIGHT: AND THEY SHALL REIGN FOR EVER AND EVER."
THE population of New-York city, in 1820, was 123,706. Id 1825, it was 166,086: making an increase, in 5 years, of 42,380. Allowing the same ratio of increase, there is now a population of 185,000. There are in the city 101 churches, or houses of public worship Of which 4 are Roman Catholic, 1 New-Jerusalem, 2 Unitarian, 2 Universalist, 2 Jews' Synagogues, 15 Baptist, 13 Methodist, 17 Episcopalian, and 34 Presbyterian churches, including the Scotch and Reformed Dutch. The remainder are Lutheran, Moravian, Friends, German Reformed, and Independents. The average number of regular attendants is estimated, by such as have made it a subject of special examination, not to exceed 400 to each house; which makes the number of those statedly attending public worship 40,400. After deducting 50.000, for children, for the sick, and for others necessarily absent, there will still remain NINETY-FOUR THOUSAND AND SIX HUNDRED, or more than half the population, absenting themselves from the public worship of God!
There are in the city 4 theatres and 2 circuses: most of which are opened from 4 to 6 nights every week. The number of shops and other places licensed to sell liquor by the small measure, is three thousand; or about ONE to every SEVENTH DWELLING-HOUSE! addition to the violations of holy time, occasioned by steam-boats, and other public conveyances, by butchers, grocers, and other traders purchasing their stock from boats arriving from the country, upwards of ONE THOUSAND shops, and other places, are opened for the sale of liquor or other things on the Sabbath!
Nor is this view peculiar to New-York. A critical investigation of facts in other cities will develope similar results. In London, the whole number of churches and chapels of all denominations is estimated at 400. "If we calculate," says a late English writer," that the average attendance is 500; which is certainly the greatest extent we can allow, and add 250 more for the fluctuating hearers, it will give a result of 300,000 persons. The population of this metropolis is estimated at 1,274,800. From which subtract the feeble minority above, and we find NINE HUNDRED AND SEVENTY-FOUR THOUSAND EIGHT HUNDRED persons neglecting the public worship of God! It appears that of the commercial papers published in London on the Sunday, there are circulated, on the lowest estimate, 45,000 copies; and that upon the most moderate computation, between two and three hundred thousand readers of these papers are to be found in the metrópolis alone. While the great number of pressmen, distributers, master-venders, hawkers, and subordinate agents, of both sexes, and of all ages, who are employed on the Sabbath, all tend to the most flagrant breach of the day of rest.”
In the mean time, the number of deaths in New-York is about five thousand annually in London, about thirty-three thousand.
1 COR. 1. 18.-For the preaching of the cross is, to them that perish,
IN the Christian revelation, there is an evident purpose of infinite wisdom, that in all the provisions for man's salvation, his moral agency should be left free and uncontrolled. Instead of accommodation to human prejudices, there is ample scope for captious objections. And if additional proof were needed, of the divine origin of the Bible, it would be found in this characteristic. Were it a system agreeable to the narrow views, in unison with the selfish feelings, and gratifying to the depraved taste of human nature, it would more resemble the fabrication of man, than the workmanship of God. But as the current of its doctrines is so entirely opposed to our natural inclinations, as to render a moral renovation indispensable to a perception of the glory of revealed truth; all such ground of skepticism is removed.
Thus the obscurities and difficulties of revelation are admirably adapted to exhibit human character, and constitute this state of existence a real probation. For if the light of truth came upon the mind with resistless energy, and the operations of the divine government were clearly disclosed; if the motives and designs of infinite wisdom were fully explained, and the realities of the spiritual world completely laid open to view; one principal aim of this dispensation would be frustrated. On the one hand, there would be no field for the exercise of faith and humble confidence on the part of Christians; and thus a precious test of their submission and obedience would be destroyed. On the other, there could not be a full disclosure of the true feelings of the unrenewed heart. Because, as all would be evident as the noon-day sun, there would remain no choice in the matter of embracing the truth-no means of evincing whether its reception were cordial or compulsory.
In this respect, there is displayed a matchless skill, as well as a gracious