Page images



see myself a poor worm drawing

near him. What hope could I Extracted from a Letter to the

entertain, if I did not know the late Dr. Erskine, dated Ju- efficacy of his blood, and turned ly 20, 1795.

as a prisoner of hope to this

strong hold? How little could Having fortunately met with

any thing of mine give a moa short account of the last days of ment's rest to a departing soul? the Countess of Huntingdon ; So much sin and self mixing though I could not obtain her with the best, and always so life, and knowing that you wish- short of what we owe ! It is well ed something upon the subject, for us that he can pity and pars I herewith transmit it for your don : and we have confidence Supplement; and shall be please that he will do so. I confess, ed to hear you are of the same my dear friend, I have no hope opinion with some of your breth- but that which inspired the dyren in Edinburgh, viz. that there ing malefactor at the side of my is no impropriety in publishing Lord ; and I must be saved in an account of Lady Huntingdon's the same way, as freely, as fully, death, without the life. I have or not at all." subjoined a letter from her med. The friend said, “ Madam, I ical friend. If you approve of cordially join you, and fall in it, as it bears such a strong tes with you. Though our lives timony in her favour, and cor. may be devoted to the work of roborates the truth of the pre- Jesus, and our deaths the conseceding narrative, I hope both quence of the service, it is not may edify:

to those sacrifices we could look Some little time before her for comfort in a dying hour.” ladyship's last confinement, one She replied “ No, verily." And of the clergymen whom she hon- enlarging on the idea of the mix, oured with her confidence, spend- ture of infirmity and corruption ing a day with her as he passed which tarnished all our best through London, she spoke of meant services, she added, that herself in a strain so remarkably a sinner could only rest satisface affecting, that he could not but torily on one foundation, and mention it afterwards. The would find nothing in the best subject of the conversation was works of his best days, that he the

of Christ, which could dare produce before God she always had so deeply at for its own sake ; sufficiently heart, and that led to the state blessed and secure, if he could of her own mind and expecta- but cry, God be merciful to me tions. The expressions were to a sinner, and let me be found this effect, but more forcible than accepted in the Beloved, and those feeble traces of them: “I complete in bim!” To these, in

the course of a long conversa• “To this lady," says Dr. Er of truth and grace.

tion, were added many like words skine, “ might justly be applied the words of the apostle, 2 Cor. viii. 18,

To a paper of importance, Whose praise is' in the gospel, written within a few months bezhroughout all the churches.

fore her last illness, were subjoin,


ed these words : “And as I have is filled with glory. I am as in always lived the poor unworthy the element of heaven itself." pensioner of the infinite bounty They who knew how constantly of my Lord God and Saviour Je- her conversation was in heaven, sus Christ, so I do hereby de-' will conclude, that those who clare, that all my present peace, were around her, might fill voland my future hope of glory, umes, instead of pages, with her either in whole or in part, de- energetic expressions. But she pead wholly, fully and finally, has forbidden it, and the publicaupon his alone merits ; commit- tion of her papers and corresting my soul into his arms un- pondence. reservedly, as a subject of his Weakened by complicated dissole mercy to all eternity."

orders, and enfeebled by age ; When the blood vessel broke, when about a week preceding which was the commencement of her departure, she was confined her illness in November, she on the bed of languishing, it said to a friend, on teing asked could not but afford surprise to how she did, “ I am well. All all around her, that the vigour is well forever. I see, wherever of her mind was as unabated, and I turn my eyes, whether I live her intellects as clear, as in any or die, nothing but victory.” period of her life. The same She has lately with great empha- earnest concern for the work of sis repeated often, “ The com- God, and the advancement of the ing of the Lord draweth nigh. kingdom of his dear Son, abroad O my friend, the coming of the and at home, occupied all her Lord draweth nigh!"--adding, thoughts. Anxious that an ate « The thought fills my soul with tempt to send the gospel to Otajoy unspeakable ; whether I shall heite in the South Seas, should see his glory more abundantly succeed, to a friend engaged in appear, or whether it be an that labour of love, who was sitintimation of my own departure ting by her bedside, she began to to Him."

express her earnest desire that it At another time, “ All the lit- might be accomplished. He with tle ruffles and difficulties which difficulty prevailed on her to surround me, and all the pains I drop the subject, lest talking am exercised with in this poor earnestly might interrupt the body, through mercy affect not rest which was desireable for her, the settled peace and joy of my assuring her that every means soul."

would be pursued to effect so A day or two before her last desirable an event,

" And toillness, just as she had come morrow," said he, your ladyfrom her room to herelbow-chair, ship shall hear what can be she broke out in these remarka- done.” And when, next day, ble words :

difficulties were raised, and the “ The Lord hath been present two persons who had engaged with my spirit this morning in a to go as missionaries, demurred, remarkable manner. What he unless they could be ordained in means to convey to my mind, I the Established Church, which know not. It may be, my ap- was refused them ; she said, on proaching departure. My soul being informed of it, "We shall find others, I doubt not :” and circled in the arms of love and gave immediate orders to her mercy.” And, at another time, secretary to write a note to the “I long to be at home : 0, I person engaged in the pursuit, long to be at home.” A little to assure him of her affectionate before she died, she said repeatregard, and to express her love edly, “ I shall go to my God and and honour for his zeal and faith. Father this night :” and shortly fulness. So warmly was her after, “ Can he forget to be graheart interested in this work to cious ? Is there any end of his her very last moments.

loving-kindness ? About an hour only before Dr. Lettsome had visited her her death, she said to a female between four and five ; shortly friend, who with assiduous atten- after her strength failed, and she tion for many nights and days appeared departing Alarmed, never quitted the room, “ Is they summoned up a friend who Charles's letter come ?” (she was waiting anxiously below. had sent for him to supply her He took her hand ; it was bechapel in Spa Fields, when Mr. dewed with sweat: he applied Jones of Langan returned home.) his fingers to the pulse-it had On being answered it is, she ceased to beat and that instant said, “ It must be opened, to see she breathed her last sigh as he if he comes.” When her friend leaned over her, and fell asleep said, “I will go and open it;" in Jesus, June 17, 1791, in the she added, “ To know if he 84th year of her age. comes, that is the point.” So The next day, Dr. Lettsome anxiously were the cares of her wrote the following letter lo Lawork impressed upon her dying dy A. E. which speaks the worheart : and often she added, thy sentiments of his own heart, when speaking of the people in and the satisfaction which so noher connexion as her children, ble an example afforded him : “ I feel for their souls."

“ Dear Lady A. E.-I deeply During the whole of her ill. sympathize with thee and all the ness, her pains never made her family in Christ, in the removal impatient ; but she seemed more of that evangelic woman so lateconcerned about those who at- ly among us, the Countess of tended her, than about herself. Huntingdon. Your souls were She said tenderly to Lady A. E. so united, and your affections so and Miss S. A. whose long, endeared together, that I cannot faithful, and tender attachment but feel in a particular manner to her is well known," I fear I on thy account, lest the mournshall be the death of you both,” ful state of thy mind may under(alluding to their constant watch- mine thy constitution, and ening with her); "it will be but a danger a life spent in mitigating few days more.” She appeared, the painful sufferings of body of during the tedious nights and our deceased friend while living. days of pain and sickness, en. Her advanced age and debilitated gaged in prayer, and animated frame, had long prepared my with thankfulness for the unut- mind for an event which has at terable mercies which she had length deprived the world of its experienced, saying, “ I am en- brightest ornament. How often

have we, when sitting by her vanced age with the perfect exsick bed, witnessed the faithful ercise of her mental faculties ; composure with which she has and that under long and painful viewed this awful change ! Not days and nights of sickness she with the fearful prospect of never repined, but appeared condoubt ; not with the dreadful stantly animated in prayer and apprehension of the judgment of thankfulness for the unutterable an offended Creator. Hers was mercies she experienced. When all peace within, a tranquillity I look back upon the last years and cheerfulness which conscious of my attendance, and connect acceptance alone could convey. with it the multitudes of others How often have we seen her, el- whom my profession has introevated above the earth and earth- duced me to, I feel consolation ly things, uttering this language: in acknowledging, that of all the “My work is done, I have noth• daughters of afHiction, she exing to do but to go to my hea. hibited the greatest degree of venly Father.” Let us, there Christian composure that ever I fore, under a firm conviction of witnessed ; and that submission her felicity, endeavour to fol. to divine allotment, however selow her, as she followed her Re- vere and painful, which nothing deemer. Let us be thankful but divine aid could inspire." that she was preserved to ad

Religious Communications.


THOUGHTS ON JUSTIFICATION. the action, or, if he did, that the

action was no crime. In civil The term justification is not society, he, who is justified, canproperly used, but in relation to not be pardoned, and he, who is a person, against whom some pardoned, cannot be justified. crime is alleged. A person is But as it respects punishmeni, accused of a particular action. pardon and justification are the By proving either, that he did

even in human courts. not perform the action, or, that He, who is pardoned, and he, the action was no crime, he jus. who is justified, are equally sure tifies himself; and whenever of not being punished. this is proved to the satisfaction It is evident, then, that the of the judge, he pronounces jus difference between justification tification on the accused person. as used by civilians, and justifi

As it respects human tribu- cation as used in the Bible, has nals, there is a difference be- relation to what is past, and not tween justification and pardon. to what is future. It respects When the judge justifies, or their past characters, and not pronounceth the justification of their future destiny. A person an accused person, he declares, justified in either case can reeither that the latter never did ceivene punishment from the law. Vol. III. No. 2,


In a religious view, justifica- than pardon. Pardon, they just. tion can have no other meaning ly observe, does nothing more than pardon. No sinner on earth than secure the sinner from pun.. can prove, that he is not guilty ; ishment. It does not imply any nor can the righteous Judge reward ; but justification, as pronounce, that the sinner is not used in the gospel, they supguilty.

pose, means something more When it is said of Christ, that than freedom from punishment, he justificth the ungodly, it can- even a positive reward. not be meant, that he pronounc

This distinction is humbly eth the ungodly innocent. That conceived to be without foun.. would be a contradiction ; it dation, would be the same as to declare, It is true, indeed, that every that the ungodly are not ungod- justified person is, according to ly. The meaning must be, that the plan of grace revealed in the on condition of faith, he absolvo gospel, entitled to a glorious reeth from punishment, those, who ward ; and the same is true of have, by ungodliness, broken the every pardoned person. But law.

· still neither pardon nor justificaRedeemed saints, as they were tion, in itself considered, implies once sinners, will always know this. . Pardon places a man just and remeniber, that they were where he was before he sinned, such. Without remembering and justification does no more. this, they cannot repeat the If, when pardoned, or justified, glorious song of heaven, He hath he receive a reward, it is owing washed us from our sins in his to that merciful constitution, unown blood. It is still more clear der which he is placed, and to ly impossible, that God should the benefits of which, he, by forget what was once the char- pardon or justification, obtains acter of those, who are redeem- access, or is restored. ed. Still, their sins shall never A master, we will suppose, be brought against them, by way hires two servants. To one, on of punishment or reproach. No condition of good behaviour, he one shall, in this sense, lay any agrees to give food and raiment thing to the charge of God's for a year : to another, on the elect. He, who is justified, at same condition, he agrees to whatever time he dies, shall re- give, for the same time, not only ceive no condemnation.

food and raiment, but a sum of That pardon and justification money. Both, after a few are the same, appears from the months, are accused of misdelanguage of scripture. Paul, in

Paul, in meanor. They are both tried, the fourth chapter of his epistle and both are justified. But to the Romans, treats particular whether they shall be rewarded, ly of justification, and he repre, is not implied in their justificasents it to be the same thing as to tion, in itself considered, but de. have iniquities forgiven and sins pends on the previous agreement covered.

subsisting between them and • It is the opinion of some emi- their master, to the benefits of nent divines, that justification which, they are hereby restored. has a more extensive influence It is essential to Christian jus

[ocr errors]
« PreviousContinue »