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the unwelcome office of exposing the infirmities of their brethren, let me close this subject by one more remark. In addition to all the other reasons for retracing our steps, we may, with great propriety, allege the spirit of the times, the genius of the age, distinguished, as it is, beyond all former example, by the union of Christians in the promotion of a common cause, and their merging their minor differences in the cultivation of great principles, and the pursuit of great objects. Instead of confining themselves, each to the defence of his own citadel, they are sallying forth in all directions, in order to make a powerful and combined attack on the kingdom of darkness. The church of Christ, no longer the scene of intestine warfare among the several denominations into which it is cantoned and divided, presents the image of a great empire, composed of distant, but not hostile provinces, prepared to send forth its combatants, at the command of its invisible Sovereign, to invade the dominions of Satan, and subdue the nations of the earth. The weapons of its warfare have already made themselves felt in the East and in the West, and wherever its banner is unfurled, it gathers around it, without distinction of name or sect," the called, the chosen, the faithful," who, at the heart-thrilling voice of Him whose vesture is dipped in blood, and who goes forth conquering and to conquer, rush to the field, unmindful of every distinction but that of his friends and foes, and too eager for the combat to ask any other question, than, Who is on the Lord's side? Who? And is it possible, after mingling thus their counsels, their efforts, their prayers, and standing side by side, in the thickest of the conflict, in coming up to the help of the Lord, to the help of the Lord, against the mighty, for them to turn their backs on each other, and refuse to unite at that table which is covered with the memorial of his love, and the fruits of his victory? No. As we hope, when the warfare of time is accomplished, and these mortal tabernacles, in which it is performed, shall be dissolved, to celebrate a never-ending feast, with Abraham, and Isaac, and Jacob, and the whole army of the faithful, of every age, from every clime, and from every tongue, let us begin by feasting together here, to present a specimen of that harmony and love, which are at once the element and the earnest of eternal felicity.
ESSAYS, in a Series of Letters, on the following Subjects; On a Man's writing Memoirs of Himself; On Decision of Character; On the Application of the Epithet Romantic; On some of the Causes by which Evangelical Religion has been rendered less acceptable to Persons of cultivated Taste. BY JOHN FOSTER. 2 vols. 12mo. 1 vol. 8vo. pp. 458. Seventh Edition.
THE authors who have written on human nature, may be properly distinguished into two classes, the metaphysical and the popThe former contemplate man in the abstract; and neglecting the different shades of character and peculiarities of temper by which mankind are diversified, confine their attention to those fundamental principles which pervade the whole species. In attempting to explore the secrets of mental organization, they assume nothing more for a basis than a mere susceptibility of impression, whence they labor to deduce the multiplied powers of the human mind. The light in which they choose to consider man in their researches, is not that of a being possessed already of the exercise of reason, and agitated by various sentiments and passions, but simply as capable of acquiring them; and their object is, by an accurate investigation of the laws which regulate the connexion of the mind with the external Universe, to discover in what manner they are actually acquired. They endeavor to trace back every mental appearance to its source. Considering the powers and principles of the mind as a complicated piece of machinery, they attempt to discover the primum mobile, or, in other words, that primary law, that ultimate fact, which is sufficiently comprehensive to account for every other movement. This attention to the internal operations of the mind, with a view to analyze its principles, is one of the distinctions of modern times. Among the ancients, scarcely any thing of this sort was known. Comprehensive theories, and subtle disquisitions, are not unfrequent in their writings; but they are chiefly employed for the illustration of different modes of virtue, and the establishment of different ideas of the supreme good. Their most abstracted speculations had al