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pendent state; and in 1791, was admitted a member of the American union.
The settlers of Vermont were mostly emigrants from Connecticut, and, for several years after the peace of 1783, their number increased with an unprecedented rapidity.Their civil and religious institutions were generally copied from these existing in Connecticut. A congregational church was early established at Bennington, and continued many years under the ministry of the pious and worthy Mr. Dewey. In most of the towns, churches were established at an early period of their settlement, who have enjoyed the labors of many able and faithful ministers of Christ. The churches and ministers in Vermont have been remarkable for uniformity in religious sentiment and practice; conformable to the Calvinistie system, and to the doctrines of the gospel so ably vindicated by several New-England divines of the last century. The late Dr. Job Swift, who has been stiled The apostle of Vermont, not more distinguished for abilities and piety than for indefatigable labors, was an eminent instrument of ordering and establishing the churches and religious institutions of the state, was an unshaken pillar of divine truth, and, in the midst of his labors in the service of his Master and his fellow-men, was suddenly removed to his eternal rest. The churches and people of the state have been favored with many gracious manifestations of the special influences of the Holy Spirit, in reviving the interests of vital religion, and bringing many souls into the holy kingdom of the Redeemer.
Probably, no instance can be found in the history of men, where all public institutions, of a civil, moral, and religious character, are held, so entirely, under the constant controul of public sentiment, as in the state of Vermont. It is earnestly hoped, that, through the merciful favor of Heaven, that people may be long worthy of the possession of the maby privileges which they now enjoy. 0.
[To be continued.]
"Train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old, he he will not depart from it."
HOW happily do observation and experience coincide with this precious portion, of Divine inspiration! Enter the family where the parents bow to this sacred mandate, and you behold each emulous to excel the other in kind offices.Ever faithful to sow, in the tender minds of their children,
the seeds of instruction, and to cultivate the principles of pi ety and religion, you see these grow up "plants of renown.” Could I draw a picture the most interesting-the most laudable-the most beneficial to man-the most acceptable to God, it would be that of a pious mother instructing and praying with her children! No monitor has so ready access -no admonition leaves so deep and so lasting an impression. Nature, as if to remunerate the fond mother for her pains, her toils and inquietudes, has stamped on her station,'an importance which none but the filial child can duly appreciate. If there is, in human life, an important station, it is that of the mother of a numerous and promising family. The happy influence of her pious instruction and example descends to future generations; and, I had almost said, transmits to them a passport to immortal felicity. Can the fair daughters of America ever be weary in well doing? Can they be remiss in a duty at once so pleasing and important, when the blessing of unborn thousands and the plaudit of their God is their proffered reward? The constant dependence of children on their mother-their filial affection-and their habitual reverence, give her an ascendeney which no one else can claim : and yet, all the wisdom of the father is necessary to instruet -all his piety to enforce by example and all his authority to regulate and restrain, if he would see his child trained up in the way he should go. Many parents regret, that their means are so limited, that they cannot afford their children an education; while they overlook and neglect those means which the God of nature has put completely in their possession, and by their supineness, deprive their children of that which they could no where else obtain. For it will not, I believe, , be denied, that a public education often proves a curse where parental instruction has been withholden.
I trust I shall not offend the fashionable part of the readers of the Magazine, when I suggest that the Assembly of Divines' Catechism contains a system of useful and important instruction. The more I consider it the more I admire it. It is a body of divinity completely digested and arranged, and adapted to every capacity. And, I will venture to say, if it were generally taught and learned, we should rarely find a youth without a competent knowledge of the doctrines of the gospel. But alas! how many, in this part of the country, and even professors of religion too, consider it an obsolete production; and have long since laid it aside as uninteresting and useless to their families. And what is still more lamentable, they have substituted no system of instruction in its stead. Will those, who have, at the "baptismal font," pro
mised to bring up their children in the nurture and admonition of the Lord, suffer them to grow up more uncultivated than their domestic animals? "Tell it not in Gath!-Pub. lish it not in the streets of Askelon!" lest infidels rejoice— lest unbelievers say "Where are the fruits of your boasted profession." A. P.
Madison county, March 1814.
ON PROMISES TO REPENTANCE.
Question. IF repentance is before faith in Christ, aré not unbelievers interested in the promises of salvation; since the promises are made to repentance?
Answer. That repentance to which the promises are made, is not before faith in Christ. The repentance to which the promises are made, regards the whole of the Divine charaeter, as it is revealed in the scriptures, or the whole that is revealed, about God, law, and sin; but this supposeth faith in Christ, or a knowledge of the gospel, in which the Divine character is represented in a more glorious light than in mere law, and sin is set in a far more odious light. That repentance which is before faith, is a partial, imperfect act, while the most essential, and important part of Divine revelation, is out of view, and not regarded. There are no promises made to this, which never stands alone as a complete and distinct act; but is a necessary pre requisite to saving faith, and evangelical repentance, and infallibly issues in it; and so may properly be considered as a part, of repentance taken in a large sense, and essential to it. In a word: no promise is made in the Bible to repentance, except it be to that repentance which implies faith in Jesus Christ. There must be faith of the same nature and kind, antecedent to faith in Christ, to which there is not any promise made, viz. a belief of the Being, and perfections of God. This differs from faith in Christ; not in its nature, but only in its object. Yet there is no promise to this. It cannot indeed be considered properly as standing alone distinct and separate from faith in Christ, as it is inseparably, and immediately connected with it yet it is really antecedent to faith in Christ, or goes before it in the order of nature. This is in the same sense true of the repentance, which goes before faith in Christ.
"Still be rever'd the sacred hour of rest,
And praise to Him who gave the human mind.
And let all nature his dominion own."
The public worship of God on the Sabbath, is calculated to have a beneficial effect on the morals of a people. In pubfic prayer the nature of God is acknowledged His perfections, and the obligations we are under. Sin is renounced. We pray for repentance and pardon, and acknowledge it our duty to live soberly, righteously and godly. Songs of praise are intended to heighten devotion, to raise our thoughts to God's Majesty, and to express our sense of thankfulness for benefits received. In songs of praise, music and poetry unite their charms, to warm the heart with a sense of divine love, and raise our affections to the Great Object of adoration.— Religious discourses, properly conducted, tend to repress viee, to encourage virtue, and to make men wiser and better; and thus the labors of public teachers coincide with the just design of civil policy. Public worship, in connexion with the Christian Sabbath, promotes moral instruction, and social refinement. Where they are attended to, mark their happy effects: you behold decency, civilization of manners, society, industry, good order and patriotism. They form an habitual rectitude of character, make men refined, humane, and rational beings. Where they are not observed, you behold the contrary: idleness, intemperance, prodigality, brutality, and impatience of restraint. In the solemn assemblies on the Sabbath, how many are they that weekly receive that useful instruction which guides their feet into the path of duty; which makes them receive the necessary labors of life with cheerfulness, which supports them under affliction, and arms them with courage to meet death.
"One day amidst the place
Where Jesus is within,
Is better than ten thousand days
Of pleasure and of sin."
"BORN OF GOD.”
AS by the natural birth there is a foundation for new impressions and habits, therefore, when a person becomes the subject of holy exercises and habits, this change is termed a birth. The motto above asserts this birth to be of God, that it is effected by God. He is the Author, the most powerful agent. This birth is not effected by corporeal might, nor intellectual energy, by the caution of prudence, the meditations of philosophy, nor the tremblings of terror ; but by the power and Spirit of God. The fire of genius, and the blaze of science are inadequate to such an effect. It would be surperfluous, they are so numerous, to recite texts of scripture, which prove the subjects of the new birth to be born of God.
In this doctrine various sects of Christians professedly unite, though really they are as opposite as frost and fire, Hopkinsians, Arminians, Calvinists, and Socinians build their hopes on divine influences. Dr. Priestly says, "there is a sense in which all is effected by the influences of the Spirit." He also says, "there is but one agent in the universe." This, when applied to regeneration, may harmonize with the opinion of Calvinists, that God is the only agent. The disciples of Arminius encourage themselves in expectation of divine influences to assist their morally good endeavors for new obedience.
Of another description is a splendid galaxy of divines, who have for generations taught that regeneration is a physical change, in which men are passive. A word of reply to these opinions may be proper. To those, who expect divine grace to assist their morally good endeavors for regeneration, we say, that till those characters, which are only evil and that continually" may at the same time be good, till eyes blind and ears deaf, ean see and hear; till those, who are dead, live and move, the doctrine of sinners' morally good endeavours for regeneration must be feebly supported. If no such endeavours exist, the idea of influences to aid those endeavours is of course imaginary. More unreasonable is it to suppose men passive in what God commands them to do. Wicked men are commanded to "make themselves new hearts," to "convert," to "turn themselves unto the Lord ;" but if men are necessarily passive in this work, these commands mean nothing, or somewhat infinitely worse. If men must unavoidably be passive, and yet are commanded to "awake," to "rise," to "turn," to " work," it reminds one of him, who demanded briek without straw. It may be said that