she told her friend afterwards she did not know that such a thing was customary) she wrote with her trembling hand the following short covenant and dedication of herself to God, and committed it to her confident to keep, as the only thing she was able to do for God, as a testimonial of her repentance and desire to glorify him on this side the grave"O my Creator and blessed Kedeemer-Thou art all I love: all I adore: and whom I cannot cease to admire.-To thee I give up my heart and soul and all I have, (that is worthy of thee to accept) in a Covenant, never to be broken, nor forgotten, living or dying-And here I willingly, and with the most ardent love and sincerity, sign, this instrument."

While she was thus engaged in the concerns of her soul and eternity, and seemed scarcely to think of her bodily complaints, they made rapid advances in undermining her house of clay-it trembled to fall. She was soon confined to her room, and almost directly to her bed. It was suggested to her, whether she did not wish to profess Christ, and join herself to his visible kingdom before she left the world. “O yes, replied she, by all means if it can be done." It was mentioned to her, there was no difficulty in the way provided she wished it, and the church being notified had no objection. Accordingly a day was fixed upon, as soon as the prerequisites could be accomplished, for her admission. The time being come a few of the church attended—and after prayer, in which she appeared to have the greatest interest and sincerity, while raised a little from her pillow she assented to a confession of faith and received the ordinance of Baptism-and gave up herself to her God and Saviour with unspeakable satisfaction.—The very next day the trying conflict drew on. She felt her nature sinking-her bodily pains were keen and tormenting-she wished to join with her pious friends in prayer—and to plead for patience under her agonies. Her heart rose in this exercise above her distresses, and she felt a sweet acquiescence in the divine will-resigned her body and soul and all which she had into the hands of God, and in a few moments was released from a world of sorrows to join in the song of the redeemed forever." Unto him that loved us, and washed us from our sins in his own blood-to him be glory and dominion forever and ever, Amen. C. E. Mag.


THE Committee appointed by the Presbytery to prepare and publish an address on the subject of Intemperance, Sabbath breaking, and Profane Swearing, would address you on the foregoing subject.

That the above named vices exist, to an alarming degree, among this enlightened and christian people, is undeniable. The growing evil, particularly, of intemperate drinking, bas roused the attention and awakened the feelings of the friends of Zion. The circumstance that the attention of the well disposed citizens of the United States generally, is turned to this subject, induces a lively hope that some effectual means may be adopted to suppress the evil.

In many respects this vice is ruinous. It is ruinous to your property. From the report of the Secretary of the Treasury, it appears that the quantity of ardent spirits consumed by the inhabitants of the United States in one year, is not less than twenty-five millions of gallons. From the consideration that much of this is reduced by retailers and sold to the consumers at an advanced price, it must cost them nearly as many dollars; a sum exceeding the whole expenses of our national government in time of peace, together with the expense of all the state governments, the support of schools and of the clergy, and of the interest of the national debt. Thus there is a prodigeous waste of property, incurred by the mere expense of the ardent spirits needlessly consumed in the United States.

But this is not all. Intemperance produces idle and dissipated habits. The intemperate man is rarely an industrious man; instead of laboring on his farm, or in his shop, or pursuing some lawful calling, he is at the tavern, or tippling house, wasting his time and his substance. Thus intemperance is ruinous to your property.

It is ruinous to your civil liberties. The demagogues of party become able politicians in the bar-room; they invite you to partake of the social glass, in order (and thus endeavor) to influence your feelings and render you subservient to their own ambitious views. Your elective franchise is violated; the electors are frequently heated with liquor and unfit to discharge the duties of freemen, while, in some instances, even the inspectors are nodding over the ballot box.

Intemperance is ruinous to the administration of justice. The angry passions are infuriated by spiritous liquors; witnesses are corrupted by this species of bribery; officers are incapacitated to do their duty; and what is still more deplorable, some of your judges and justices go from the seat of justice to the tavern, the lobby, or the bar, and under the influence of the intoxicating draught, sleep upon the bench.

Thus assaults, riots, bribery and perjury are increased; law-suits are multiplied, and justice perverted.

Intemperance is ruinous to morals and religion. It unhinges the moral principles; it opens the flood-gates of vice and debauchery, and degrades the man to the level of a beast. It exchanges the happiness of the domestic circle for scenes of sorrow and woe; it is a vortex which swallows up every social affection; it is an Etna, which disgorges only filth, corruption and fire. Intemperance increases the natural disregard to God and the divine authority; it begets infidelity and contempt of Christ; it tramples under foot the Gospel and all its privileges, and does despite unto the Spirit of Grace.

It is ruinous to character. Men of the brightest talents and of the fairest characters, and who might be eminently useful to their fellow men, are, by becoming intemperate, not only rendered useless to community, but disgraced, neglected, and despised.

It is ruinous to health. It gradually heats and over-acts the arterial system, relaxes the muscles and debilitates the nerves; it destroys the appetite for food, and induces painful and loathsome diseases. With a broken constitution, the wretched victim of intemperance drags about his emaciated limbs, a fit subject for the pestilence, which walketh in darkness, and the destruction which wasteth at noon-day, till the lingering but certain hand of death drags him unpitied and unlamented down to the grave.

Intemperance is, above all, ruinous to the soul. The intemperate man rarely thinks of the world to come; his desires of future felicity are blunted, and his fears of death, are, in a great measure removed. He loves to associate with the filthy and depraved; he chooses misery for his portion; and he becomes a fit companion for devils and damned spirits. He is prepared to take up his residence in hell, where the worm dieth not, and the fire is not quenched.

Thus, while the sin of intemperance is indulged, every temporal calamity awaits our country, our cities, our towns, our villages, our families, and ourselves, and eternal ruin awaits our souls. Intemperance is not peculiar to the region in which we dwell, but extends throughout our country.— This renders the evil still more dreadful, and the subject more interesting and alarming.

The general profanation of the Sabbath, brethren, is another alarming evil, on which we would address you. It is a most melancholy, a most alarming truth, that many go to their farms and to their merchandize; that many pursue their journies, and their secular employments; that many spend their time in visiting, in amusements, or at the taverns, on God's holy day. These practices naturally diminish

our reverence for God, and our sense of moral obligation.They lead men to undervalue the happiness of heaven, and to disregard the miseries of hell. These things have a tendency to undermine the foundation of the church, and of the state, "to bring more wrath upon the people, and to kindle a fire in the gates which shall devour the palaces of Jerusalem, and which shall not be quenched."

We further address you, brethren, on the subject of profane swearing. The solemn oaths of custom-houses, and public offices, are often considered as mere formalities, introduced into the routine of public concerns, and are become the means of enabling the unprincipled to defraud the public with greater ease and security. Perjury, by many, is thought no crime, provided it can be concealed. The sacred name of God and of Jesus Christ, is profaned by multitudes; it is profaned not only by the untutored and untaught, but by the fashionable and polite, by the learned and honorable. But God will come near to you in judgment; he will be a swift witness against false swearers, and them that turn aside the stranger from his right, and that fear not God: "For by swearing, and lying and stealing, they break out, and blood toucheth blood; therefore shall the land mourn, and every one that dwelleth therein shall languish."

"Because of these things cometh the wrath of God upon the children of disobedience. Be not ye, therefore, brethren, partakers with them." Seeing these things are so offensive in the sight of a holy God, and so ruinous to all we hold dear, either in this life or in the life to come, permit us earnestly to expostulate with such as are living in these transgressions. Break off your sins by righteousness, and turn unto the living and true God. "Turn ye, turn ye, for why will ye die!" O! consider what mischief you are bringing on your country; what wretchedness you are entailing on your posterity, and what ruin you are bringing on your own souls! You who are beginning to indulge your appetites, consider before it be too late, that there is a dreadful woe denounced against him "who drinketh for drunkenness, and not for thirst." Woe unto you sabbath breakers! for the reward of your hands shall be given you. The language of God is, "You have despised my holy things, and profaned my sabbaths; therefore will I pour out my indignation upon you. I will consume you with the fire of my wrath. Woe unto you profane swearers, who take the name of the Lord your God in vain."

Our brethren in the ministry will suffer the word of exhortation. We earnestly exhort them, both in their public and

private ministrations, to expose these vices in their most odious and detestable forms, and to paint the consequent evils in the most lively colors. We exhort them to do this, that the vicious may be reclaimed, the thoughtless alarmed, and the rising generation be not like their fathers, who set not their heart aright, and whose spirit was not stedfast with God. We exhort them to "stand between the porch and the altar, and to say, spare thy people, O Lord, and give not thine heritage to reproach."

We hereby call upon all MAGISTRATES: You are the ministers of God unto the people for good. We hereby exhort you to act for God, in enforcing the laws of the land, in suppressing vice, in promoting righteousness and sobriety of manners; that you who have judged others, may be able to stand on that day when you likewise shall be judged.

We call upon professors of religion, and upon all the friends of morality, to unite their efforts in suppressing the prevalent vices in our land. We entreat them to enter spiritedly, but prudently into the measures hereby recommended by Presbytery; and into any other measures which may be deemed expedient, for the suppression of vice. Say not that the evil is too inveterate to admit of a cure; that vice has become so prevalent, that with all your efforts you can do nothing towards suppressing it. This is not tue. Though our prospects are awfully alarming, yet all is not lost. It will soon be too late; but we trust this is not yet the case. We trust, that by prudent and spirited exertions, a great change may be effected in the morals of community. In other parts of the land moral institutions are formed for the suppression of vice and the promotion of morality; and the friends of morality and religion in various ways, uniting their exertions to effect these desirable objects; and they already begin to perceive the beneficial effects of these exertions. That in these exertions you will meet with opposition from the votaries of vice, we anticipate. It cannot be expected that the enemy will surrender his strong hold without making resistance; but shall considerations of this nature weaken your hands and discourage your hearts? Shall they not rather stimulate you to greater exertions? Remember, it is the cause of your country; it is the cause of religion! it is the cause of God in which you are engaged. The Lord is on your side. If in all your exertions you look to him for assistance and direction, you may confidently hope that he will grant your desires and crown your labors with success.

But remmember, that if in this evil day, a day when iniquity abounds and the love of many waxes cold, “you alto

« ElőzőTovább »