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holiness, which so generally prevails. And, hence the little attention which is paid to some of the most interesting views of future glory which the Scriptures present.
The doctrine of grace is thus unconsciously perverted by many. They seem to think that doctrine, not only at variance with human merit, but with degrees of glory proportioned to the degrees of christian excellence. They regard the arrangements of eternity as so arbitrary that they have little or no connexion with the transactions of time. They imagine that the thief on the cross will not only be saved, but may shine with as bright a lustre as the apostle of the Gentiles. Is not this forgetting that the forgiveness of the kingdom of heaven is a very different thing from the rewards of that kingdom? The former having a reference to the evil which is common to all, necessarily places all in the same state; the latter having respect to what is good, or to positive conformity to the will of God, must be proportioned to the degree in which it exists.
In this constitution there is not only a recognition of the principle of grace, but a very high display of it. To the merit of the atonement, and to the influences of the Divine Spirit, we are indebted for all our positive goodness, and for the acceptance of all our services. To his own gift, therefore, we are previously indebted for all our hopes of distinction in his heavenly kingdom, and to encourage the highest possible cultivation of the benefits which he bestows, and of the opportunities of usefulness which he presents, he graciously engages to reward every attempt to glorify his name. The idea of merit is forever excluded by the infinite disproportion which obtains between the service and the reward. We are so treated as to be
left through eternity with a perpetually increasing and accumulating debt, to the infinite grace and love of God.
It is impossible to entertain this idea of future glory, without experiencing its elevating and stimulating effects. It is not necessary to restrict it to missionary labors; nor was this the object of the writer, in this admirable essay. It applies to all the branches of christianity; and to all the engagements of christian enterprise. In whatever way an individual may most fully live to the Lord, most entirely exercise the self-denial which the gospel inculcates, and most clearly evince the hallowed nature of his principles, he may receive the promised boon. Urquhart believed that a missionary life was the course in which he might most satisfactorily and honorably discharge his obligations to the Saviour, and deserve his approbation. Believing this, he devoted himself to it, and only parted with his determination thus to glorify his Redeemer, with life itself. With him these views were not a beautiful speculation, but living and efficient principles. They influenced his studies, his dispositions, his pursuits. They raised him above the low ambition, and the petty warfare of the earth. They fixed his hopes on the enjoyments of a purer region; and stimulated his exertions by the prospect of a crown of incorruptible glory.
These Essays, and those especially on Political Economy, might furnish matter for very extended discussion; but this would lead away from the great object of this publication, which is to exhibit the rise, progress, and formation of the religious character of the individual whose short life is illus
trated. Other topics I notice, not so much for their own sake as for the light which they throw on the cast and character of his mind. In themselves they possess a relative importance, but they may be said to have "no glory by reason of the glory which so far excelleth."
Το persons who are familiar with the science of morals and political economy, the essays of my young friend will appear no ordinary productions, considered as college exercises. Their simplicity constitutes their charm. The lucidus ordo is most delightfully exemplified in every one of them. His thoughts constantly flowed in a train peculiarly clear, always natural and unaffected; and the easy diction in which he expressed himself was the perfect picture of his mind.
He was too busy about this period to spend much time in correspondence; but a few of his letters, though short, I must introduce. They will show the strength and delicacy of his natural feelings, and how tenderly he was alive to all the charities of human life. A sentence is sometimes more indicative of feeling and sentiment than a volume.
St. Andrew's, February, 1825.
My dear Mother;
If ever in my life I felt quite oppressed and burdened with kindness, it was on the receipt of your very kind communication after my brother's death; and I am quite ashamed that I have not long before now found means to express my gratitude. My friends seem to have vied with each other, who should be kindest, and who should pay me most attention; and had I not been quite
overburdened with business, you should have had a letter long before now. At the time you sent, I had a very severe cold, which seemed to show some disposition to settle in my breast; but I am now tolerably well again. Nothing, however, could prevent my good landlady, on the recommendation of Mr. Smith, who called on me, from ordering flannels for me, which of course has greatly assisted in emptying my slender purse. I have just received my father's letter of the 4th, and am exceedingly happy to hear that the church have all come to one mind concerning Mr. Jack. The choosing of a minister is in general one of the most trying times to our churches; and I think we have much reason to bless God that roots of bitterness have not been permitted to spring up and trouble us. Things are going on pretty well among us. The people round about seem to be hungering and thirsting after righteousness. Mr. A. preached in the country on Friday, at a new station, where the people themselves had requested that some one should come. There is a great want of laborers,-they have pressed Mr. R. into the service, but still there is employment which is more than enough for them.
St. Andrew's, February 22, 1825.
My dear Brother;
I have sometimes blamed, or rather pitied you, (for it is not a legitimate subject of blame,) for a want of feeling; and I am quite sorry I have ever done so; for the deep pathos that runs through some of your letters, which are, notwithstanding, expressed in all the unaffected and unstudied simplicity of nature, convinces me that I have been very far mistaken. I recollect of being very much
struck by your truly pathetical, yet artless account of the death of T. Greig, which was contained in a letter you sent me about a year ago; and I have been still more affected by your very touching allusion, in your last, to the death of our brother. I would indulge the hope that this event may have proved a blessing to us as a family. In all the communications I have received from home, there has, I think, been displayed a spirit of greater tenderness than usual. With your own short letter I have been particularly pleased. You could not have given me a more satisfactory proof that this dispensation has been in some degree blessed to you than the feeling of self-condemnation which your letter breathes.
Your truly affectionate Brother.
My dear Sister;
I have the expectation of seeing you so soon, that it may be thought almost unnecessary for me now to write to you: but I cannot think of letting the session pass without sending you a letter. I was gratified to hear from Mr. Muir that you had written a letter for me. I am quite sorry you did not send it, for I am sure that those very things which seemed blemishes to you would have enhanced its value to me. It is an easy and unstudied effusion of sentiment which constitutes the great charm of epistolary correspondence. I wish you would always write to me the simple dictates of your own heart without any external interference whatever, and with the fullest confidence, that, what you write will never meet any -eye but my own. I hope to see you now in a few weeks, and to be able to devote a good part of my time in the summer months to your education.