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nating Edwards, cannot fail, and especially at the present time, to be read with more than ordinary interest. Considering President Edwards as handling this subject with great propriety and discretion, I do hereby express my desire to see his work more extensively circulated through the churches.
PHILIP MILLEDOLER. College, New Brunswick, Sept. 17th, 1831.
The Works of President Edwards have acquired no ordinary reputation. His “Narrative of Surprising Conversions and Thoughts on Revivals of Religion,” written after much research and close observation of the various effects produced on the minds of gospel-hearers, in a time of general awakening, cannot fail to profit those who read it in a serious temper. I am pleased to hear that this Narrative is soon to be published in a form that will render it accessible by all, and hope that it may have an extensive circulation.
JAMES S. CANNON. Theological Seminary, New Brunswick.
My own views of the “Narrative," &c., of President Edwards, are expressed in the above favorable notice of Dr. Cannon.
JOSEPH H. JONES. I cannot but hope that the work, will receive an extensive and liberal patronage. It is the best body of practical theology within the compass of my knowledge. It is searching, instructive, edifying, scriptural. Let it be carefully read by every professor of religion, and studied and digested by every student of theology, and every young minister of the gospel. Let me just mention another desideratum
: the republication of the same unrivaled author's work on Original Sin. The diffusion of these treatises in separate forms, would, with the divine blessing, greatly conduce to the increase of sound godliness, and check the progress of pernicious errors.
JOHN DE WITT. New Brunswick, Sept. 1831.
From Ministers in New York. To those who are acquainted with the writings of President Edwards, the highest recommendation of the present work is, that it is the best of them all. It is more than ten years since I first read it, and I well recollect my surprise that I had not read it before. I then thought it one of the richest volumes I ever perused. One impression I distinctly remember; and that is, that great injustice might be done the venerable and devout author, by viewing the work in detached parts. As a whole, it cannot be too highly valued, nor too extensively read, especially at the present time.
GARDINER SPRING. New York, September 6, 1831.
The importance of revivals of religion is literally infinite: because conversions are infinitely important; and the spread and jurisdiction of the gospel of God over the minds of men everywhere is properly the grand desideratum and the destined prospect of the world. The discrimination of theological parties (if these must be and have a name) in the Christian world, will soon be made extensively by this criterion of PRINCIPLES AND PERSONS-THEIR KNOWN RELATION TO REVIVALS OF RELIGION! At the present time, all denominations considered, there are many whose ignorance of the whole matter is their only prominent characteristic in regard to it; many, as much
distinguished by enmity and an affected intellectual superiority to their theory and their fruits ; many, by a latent ill-concealed antipathy, that affects to dislike only their excrescences and occasionally spurious accompaniments ; and many, I bless God for it, who more and more love them, because they love Him, see in his light their incomparable worth, and desire them, prayerfully, practically, zealously, and yet soberly, in their destined universal prevalence.
The age ought not perhaps to be yet dignified as the age of revivals ; because the dawn ought not to anticipate, or perfectly to characterize, the perfect day. But it is such an age exactly as will more and more demand, and now also does, revival principles, revival ministers, revival Christians, and revival scenes and glories multiplied : of course, I think revival publications, are as appositely needed ; of the right kind, and calculated to enlighten, and guide, and assist the operations of the church of God, in aiming directly at the conquest of the world to Jesus Christ and his glorious sceptre.
With these views, I think the publication of Edwards on Revivals is very timely, judicious, and of excellent promise: I therefore cordially desire and recommend the extensive circulation and full perusal of that valuable and singular treatise.
SAMUEL H. COX. New York, August 3, 1831.
I am very glad that we are to have a new edition of “Edwards on Revivals,” &c. Nothing could be more seasonable at the present day. I have read the work again and again, and always with new advantage.
J. M. MATHEWS. New York, September 24, 1831.
We would cordially recommend to the Christian public the works of President EDWARDS ON REVIVALs. These works were written in A. D.1736 and 1742, and contain a faithful narrative of the glorious revival in New England by the outpouring of the Holy Ghost in those blessed days, when clear, pure, and scriptural views of the doctrines of the gospel, and true practical godliness, sincerely characterized the children of the puritans. We could sincerely wish that this work, now about to be published by Dunning and Spalding, were in the hands of all our Christian brethren.
W. C. BROWNLEE,
CHARLES G. SOMMERS. New York, August 5, 1831.
At the present time, there is no subject of such deep and increasing interest to the American churches, as the subject of revivals of religion. It is a subject too on which no uninspired man was ever better qualified to speak or write than President Edwards-not only on account of his eminently discriminating and sanctified mind, but also on account of his opportunities of observation resulting from the extensive work of God which occurred under his own eye. I know of nothing so well calculated to exhibit the blessedness of such "times of refreshing from the presence of the Lord,” and at the same time to guard against the self-deception and other evils which are then likely to occur, as his “Narrative," and “ Thoughts on the Revival of Religion in New England, in 1742.” On this account, I rejoice in another attempt to give this work a more extended circulation. W. D. SNODGRASS.
New York, September 22, 1831.
The “Narrative of Surprising Conversions,” and “Thoughts on the Revival of Religion in New England,” from the pen of President Edwards, and originally published, one in 1736, the other in 1742, are works nich well de
serve to be perused and studied by all who feel a concern for the prosperity of the church, and who would become acquainted with the various ways in which the God of grace is pleased to approach the soul with the blessings of his salvation.
At the present time, when the divine influence is in a remarkable manner manifesting itself far and wide, it seems to be particularly desirable that the work should be given to the public in a detached form, so as to be accessible to all.
JOHN KNOX. New York, August, 1831.
I am pleased to find that it is proposed to republish the work of President Edwards on Revivals. The character of the author for intellect and piety, has its praise in all the churches, and needs no commendation. The work proposed to be republished, as well as the treatise on the affections by the same author, contain a clear, discriminating, and searching delineation of evangelical and vital religion. At its first publication it was highly useful, during à period of extensive revivals, in promoting the work of God, and in preventing and removing incident evils. It is hoped that at this period its republication will be greatly beneficial.
THOMAS DE WITT. New York, August, 6, 1831.
What President Edwards has written on Revivals, I consider a full and thorough discussion of the whole subject. If ministers of the gospel would read it once a year, it seems to me that all controversy among the orthodox with respect to the truths which are to be mainly insisted on, and the means to be used for giving such truths a free access to men's minds, would come to an end. If it were circulated among Christians where there is no revival, it would tend strongly to arouse the church to a sense of the importance of such a blessing, and lead them to seek successfully to promote the quickening of God's people, and the conversion of sinners. If read in a time of revival, it might be expected to give increased tone and energy to the revival feeling, and at the same time to regulate that feeling when excited. If read by minister and people in the decline of a revival, it might be expected, under God, to stop the ebbings of spiritual feeling, and bring back a heavier and richer tide of mercy. I rejoice in its republication, and recommend it to the careful perusal of all who love the salvation of sinners.
JOEL PARKER. New York, September, 1831.
Dear Sir-I consider the proposed publication of Edwards' work on Revivals of Religion, as highly important, and, in the present times, specially appropriate. The work is full of valuable truth, instructive experience, and discriminating observation, well calculated to guard against pernicious perversion, that characteristic'spirit of these days, which Satan would so gladly delude into extravagance and heresy. The publication will richly merit the patronage of a Christian public.
CHAS. P. McILVAINE, Brooklyn, September 23, 1831. I concur in the foregoing recommendations.
JAMES MILNOR, New York, 1831.
A revival OF RELIGION is a subject of great interest and importance. The phrase has, by common consent, been appropriated to denote a work of the Spirit of God, tuming the attention of considerable numbers in a place to the things of eternity, and bringing many, in a short time, to a saving. knowledge of Christ. It is merely the success of the gospel, unusually increased. It is the conversion of numbers of sinners in a short space of time. Whatever interest is attached to the institutions of religion, whatever pleasure is felt in the success of a preached gospel, or whatever .emotions arise, on earth or in heaven, at seeing one sinner repent and believe in Christ, all these must be heightened and enhanced abundantly at the multiplication of such results, which constitutes a revival of religion. The Savior himself sees the travail of his soul, and is satisfied, when converts are multiplied, as trophies of his grace. It is only through mistake or misinformation, that any who love our Lord Jesus Christ are grieved or alarmed at a revival of religion.
These seasons are as important as they are interesting. They constitute not only the glory and the rejoicing of the church, but her safety and life. In the darkest periods, the church has been saved from utter extinction by revivals. The first preaching of the gospel was attended with powerful revivals. The book of Acts is a history of revivals. The reformation from popery was almost everywhere accompanied with• revivals. There were extensive revivals in the times of the Puritans in England. The early churches in New England had numerous revivals. Powerful seasons of the same kind were experienced in Scotland and Ireland, in the former part of the last century. At a later period, extensive revivals took place in England, under the preaching of Wesłey and Whitefield. The revivals which occurred in America, under the ministrations of President Edwards and his cotemporaries, were distinguished for striking manifestations of divine power and grace. Numerous revivals in the United States marked the close of the fast and beginning of the present century, both in the east and the west. And from that time they have been regularly growing more frequent, more numerous, more powerful and rapid, all over our country, to the present time. The last year was undoubtedly distinguished, above all that have preeeded it, since the formation of the Christian church. Never before has the Holy Spirit been poured out in so many places at once; never before has the Lord Jesus gathered so many into his churches, in the same space of time, "of such as shall be saved."" There is reason to believe, that these displays of divine grace will continue to increase, till one general revival shall extend over the habitable globe. We are assured of the universal extension and final triumph of the gospel in the whole world. We know, from the “sure word of prophecy,” that what we now see of the progress and effects of spiritual religion, is only a small • sample of what is yet to be seen. And we thence infer, that all the revivals which have hitherto taken place, are only the first fruits of the glorious harvest. It is only by revivals that the work of conversion can overtake the increase of population in the world. It is only by revivals that the ministers and other instruments and means for sending out the gospel can be furnished. It is only in this way that infidelity and the love of the world can be made to yield to the authority of Christ. By no other process can the church gain strength and numbers fast enough, to meet the opposition which will inevitably be provoked by the growing influence and power of religion.
It is manifest, therefore, that the church is to calculate upon revivals of religion, as habitual events, and to consider the duties and responsibilities incident to revivals as her customary burden. Or rather we may say, that the state of revival, the rapid gathering in of souls to Christ, by the labors of his people, and in answer to their etlicacious prayers, ought to be regarded as the natural and appropriate state of the church. And by consequence, the absence of revivals implies something wrong in the church, of declension, neglect of duty, sinning against the Lord Jesus Christ, destroying the souls of men.
It is incumbent then upon the church, to prepare for such a state of revival as we are thus authorized to anticipate. The subject of revivals must be more studied, and better understood. And the spirit of revivals must be more diligently cultivated. What an impulse would at once be given to the study of the art of war, if it were anticipated that the country would soon be involved in such a calamity. Why should not the science of revivals, and the course of action required in revivals, become a matter of general study in the church ? Ministers have doubtless much yet to learn concerning revivals, the signs of their approach, the means of producing them, the manner of conducting them, the way to guard against difficulties, and to secure the happiest results. And every Christian ought to understand revivals, because every one has a part to act in relation to them. There is a growing conviction in the church, of the responsibility which rests upon every individual professor of religion, in times of revival. In times of revival it becomes manifest how much the conduct of each one may help or hinder the effect of divine truth. But without knowledge on the subject, no one can correctly perform his duty in revivals. And unless one understands the principles that are applicable in them, it is impossible he should be well prepared to act, in the ever-varying emergencies which a revival does not fail to exhibit. How great the calamity, to prevent or destroy a revival, from not knowing how to act in regard to it!. Or to resist and extinguish a real revival, under a mistaken opinion that it is spurious! Or to encourage and cherish a spurious excitement, supposing it to be a genuine work of the Spirit of God! Or to have the