« ForrigeFortsæt »
with effects. Reason too differs in each
Obituary. man, for it rests upon the lower storeys of the mind, his memory and imagina
At Rhodes, on November 10th, John tion, and upon the materials it can draw Clarkson, after a long and tedious illness, from them. Reflection helps to form was removed into the spiritual world, reason, and when organized a man then in the forty-eighth year of his age. The acts from principle instead of from en- father of the deceased, the late Thomas thusiasm and impulse. "Reason, however, Clarkson, took great pains to foster in even then, sees only the things of the the hearts of his numerous world, and in the light of the world. It affectionate interest in the New Church may not enable a man to see the things
The deceased, of spirit and God, but still he must have who had been ailing for about three a faculty which will enable him to do years, resided during the last few so, which, like the other faculties he
months in Blackpool. has at birth, he has to acquire the Society regrets the loss they have use of, or it will continue dormant. sustained by his departure, both they There is, however, no infallibility in and the bereaved widow and children man, whether pope, scientist or logi- derive consolation from the rememcian, because as the man is fallible, his brance of his long and useful career.
Previous to interment his remains were conclusions cannot be infallible : just because he is a man and not a god. He conveyed into the church, and the burial can receive and recognize truth when service was read hy the Rev. S. Pilpresented to him as in revelation. And kington, who on the evening of Sunday, as a man's mind, from having so many discourse from Heb. xi. 13.
Nov. 28th, also preached his funeral impressions from the world photographed upon it, becomes a picture of the outer On the 16th of November, at her world, so the facts respecting God and residence, 21 Bingfield Street, Calethe spiritual world, when he raises him- donian Road, London, Mrs. Emma self into the light of heaven, furnish him Purnell, aged sixty-six years, passed with material for the use of spiritual into the spiritual world. Receiving the reason, fand form in him a picture of doctrines of the New Church in 1848, heaven. Human reason can never raise on the occasion of her marriage with him above nature, but as the love of the the late Mr. John Purnell, she acquired man is spiritual, as his love is for God most affectionate and intelligent and his neighbour, he will be illuminated attachment for them, which mani. by spiritual light. It is the love behind fested itself firstly in a consistent and iť which qualities it, and if his love be self-denying life, and secondly in her centred in himself and in worldly pos- devoted support of the Society at Argyle sessions and enjoyments, his reason will Square, of which she was a member, and be tied down to these and unable to rise at whose services she was a regular above them. When a man rises to the attendant. use of spiritual reason, then faith is no longer blind, but is in harmony with
At Brightlingsea, December 5th, and at one with reason ; the faith is then Emma, eldest daughter of the Rev. genuine and the reason spiritual.”
Joseph Deans, was removed at the early
age of ten years and four months, by a Birth.
very short illness, to her eternal home. On December 17, at 82 Angell Road, grief to her parents
, though doubtless, in
Her departure is a bereavement and Brixton, Mrs. E. H. Bayley, of a son.
regard to herself, “it is well with the Marriage. .
child.” November 24th, at the New Jerusalem Church, Birmingham, by the Rev. E. ERRATA.—Page 598, line 19 from Madeley, great-uncle of the bridegroom, bottom, for “Such cannot admit that Charles Madeley, of Warrington, only the will is free if it be at all limited in son of Alfred and Elizabeth Madeley, its action,” read, “Such believe that and grandson of the late Mr. Alderman the
however limited in its Madeley, of Derby, to Emma, fourth action.” Page 582, line 5 from top, daughter of the late Mr. George Benton, instead of “and,” read “for ;” and in of Birmingham.
line 7 insert “in” after
“Now these be the last words of David. David the son of Jesse said, and the man who was raised up on high, the anointed of the God of Jacob, and the sweet psalmist of Israel, said,” etc.—2 Sam. xxiii. 1.
We turn confidently to these words for instruction, because we cannot regard them as speaking solely of the sweet singer of Israel.
David, Elijah, Abraham, Isaac, Jacob and others are constantly used in the Word as representatives. The interior senses of the Word have nothing to do with these or other persons whose names form part of its literal sense. This must be so, as we see plainly when we consider the origin of Divine Revelation. It is Divine. It did not grow up in and from human history. It came down from the Lord through the heavens. Thus it was in the heavens before it was on earth. Its inmost, its celestial and its spiritual sense, preceded the literal sense,
and therefore those names of persons and places which we find in the Word are not in the spiritual sense, but the spiritual sense is in them. Thus it is that the Word now lives, and will for ever live, in the heavens, a fountain of wisdom for angels, who know nothing of the patriarchs and priests and kings of earth.
David then is representative. By David we are to understand not the king who succeeded Saul, but the Lord Himself. Hence, long after the death of this king, it was written, “David, My servant, shall reign over them, and they shall have one shepherd. My servant David
shall be their prince for ever" (Ezek. xxxiv. 24, 25); and again by Hosea : “The children of Israel shall return and seek the Lord their God, and David their king, and shall fear the Lord and His goodness in the latter days" (iii. 5). David represents the Lord. The Lord is the only David for whom Israel, the spiritual church, seeks, the only David who shall reign over that church for ever. So when we read again (Isa. xxxvii. 35), “I will defend this city to save it for Mine own sake, and for My servant David's sake.” David, the servant, represents the Lord as to the Humanity which in the first state of humiliation, as a servant, prayed to and adored Jehovah. So long as the Lord was in the world, His Human was or became Divine Truth. Thus “ David My servant" represents the Lord in His Humanity, the Lord as to Divine Truth. Divine Truth is always servant to Divine Good, just as truth is profitable to man only in so far as it leads him to genuine goodness. It is as the servant that ministers to goodness that truth reigns in and over the spirits of men. And thus David, the servant of the LORD, is the king who reigns over Israel. Truth reigns not absclutely and in its own right, but as the servant and minister of goodness. This is a thing we forget. We think of Truth as king, and fancy that there is nothing higher than truth, and therefore we are sometimes satisfied to have Divine truths in our memory and understanding. But he who has doctrinal truth as the principle and dominant thing in his mind is no true Christian. He is not David, a king of Divine appointment. The true servant and follower of the Lord is he in whom Truth reigns as the minister and exponent of Love. When Divine Love is Lord of lords, and Divine Truth is King of kings, then we belong to that Israel which is a kingdom of priests.
The office of truth is to serve love. The use of doctrine is to show us how love should act, and thus Jehovah says, “David is my servant," “Israel shall seek David their king." There are, however, men who exalt truth, as they know it, above love. They are clever and not kind, they are learned and not loving. They aim at being theologians, but are not disciples of Jesus. Such men have only a falsified theology ; their cleverness is craft, their learning is a delusion. Such a man is not called David, but Jeroboam, the son of Nebat, who makes Israel to sin. David represents the Lord as to Divine Truth, the truth that is true because it is from Love; the truth that reigns only because it leads to love and goodness; the doctrine that leads to life; the religion of life, which lives in doing good.
These are the last words of Divine Truth. These last words are the
last forms in which Divine Revelation comes to man. Divine Truth, in its first form, no man and no angel can understand or even hear. Absolute Divine Truth is not in heaven. One with Divine Love, it is far above all heavens. In order that Divine Wisdom might be received by angels and men, it had to flow forth from the Lord, and be successively clothed with greater and greater limitations, until at length it comes down to man in the letter of the Divine Word. Here we have the last words, the lowest living and intelligible forms of Divine Truth. The first words of God we could not hear. The Lord fills heaven after heaven with His words, and those words reach us only as they pass into earth from the lowest of the heavens. Nor must we fancy that we are thus debarred from any heavenly wisdom. It is a constant law of Divine order that the last includes and contains the first. In these last words of Divine Truth all wisdom is contained. As we search the Scripture we may find all that we can know upon earth. All revealed wisdom is here in the Word of God. The spirits of the just find here far more than we can find, and as from age to age throughout eternity we recur to this Divine Word, we shall always find fresh wisdom. These are the last words of David, but in this ultimate form there is present in its fulness, its power and its glory the wisdom of Him who is All in all, for He is the First and the Last.
The Word is only precious to us because it comes from the Lord. Were it not for its Divine origin it would only be a collection of books, valuable indeed for their antiquity, but uneven in their character and inconsistent and irreconcilable in their teachings of both faith and morals. It is a Divine book-in this alone its value consists; and yet it comes to us in the guise of a human book, or it could not be comprehended by minds like ours. Thus Elijah and all the prophets were men of like passions with ourselves. The Word has been made flesh to meet us in our infirmities, and hence here we read its descr tion, “David the son of Jesse hath said,” etc. Thus Divine Truth comes to us in human form.
“The man,” or rather the Hero, “who was raised up on high,” reminds us at once of the prophecy of Isaiah : “Unto us a Child is born, unto us a Son is given, and the government shall be upon His shoulder, and His name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, the Mighty God, the Everlasting Father, the Prince of Peace.” The Mighty God, or God the Hero, is a name given to the Lord with reference to His victories, as our Incarnate Redeemer, over evils and falses and the whole power of hell. In His Humanity He won these victories, and
thus became our Redeemer and our Saviour for ever. When, therefore, we read here of the Word of God as a man or hero that is raised up, we are reminded that the Word of God has come to us as a means of warfare and victory. Man's life, whenever he lives truly, is a continual fight ;-the Apostle Paul says that he had to fight with wild beasts at Ephesus, and so we have to fight with regard to all our own desires. Naturally we desire evils, but from Divine influence upon us we learn to desire good, and from these conflicting desires we have our Ephesus, in which we war with wild beasts. We cannot do this in our own might. Were we alone we must perish. Were we without Divine help, we should not even make any attempt against our spiritual enemies. No man goeth a warfare at his own charges, on his own responsibility, or in his own strength. But we have a command,Fight! fight, not one another,—your warfare is not with flesh and blood,--but against spiritual wickedness in high places, and here, in the Word of God, is our strength. It is an exalted Hero.
We have the Word in its literal sense, the last words of David. It is in human form,-David the son of Jesse hath spoken,—but it contains Divine might for our strength and salvation. The Word of God is a hero raised up, and is able also to make us heroes if we will but believe that it is Divine, and use it as Divine.
It is further described as the Anointed of the God of Jacob. We do not think much of Jacob. He is one of the by-words of the Bible. We think of his cunning, his time-serving, his many meannesses, his internally idolatrous character. But Jacob, with all his faults, is of our kindred. He represents our own natural and unregenerate state, the lowest condition of man's spirit, and his first steps upward. We, like Jacob, have lain at the foot of the ladder, sleeping there ; and waking, not new in heart and life, but striving and hoping to be renewed, we are here reminded that we are not God-forgotten and God-forsaken. We cannot only look back through eighteen centuries, saying there was once a Saviour who took upon Him the seed of Jacob; we may find this Saviour now with us in His Word; and placing our hand upon the Book of Revelation may say, Here is the Anointed of the God of Jacob. “Of Jacob,” because the Word is specially given for fallen men. The Lord came, and the Word was written for fallen men, that they may be regenerated. He came, and the Word was written, that men may be healed; the sick are cared for, redemption is for them, for they have need of the Physician. “The God of Jacob.” The first revelation which we can possibly receive