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widely extensive, and incalculably beneficial. Experience has proved that no human exertions are so effectual to harmonize christians, to excite religious zeal, to suppress vice and immorality, and to diffuse light and knowledge, as the gratuitous distribution of the Word of Life.*
The Assembly rejoice, to have it in their power to state, that the Great Head of the Church, has vouchsafed a signal blessing, on the Missionary efforts of the past year. Forty Missionaries have been employed the last year, whose journals afford the most pleasing testimony of the beneficial result of their labors. Several new churches have been organized, and more have been put into a forming state. Many new Churches are growing up in the Western parts of Tennessee; a Missionary Society has lately been formed in that state. The call for Missionary exertion is loud; and the services of our Missionaries have been received with emotions of gratitude and joy.
In taking a view of the state of religion within the bounds of the Assembly, an interesting object which arrests the attention, is the infant Theological Seminary, lately established at Princeton. From this Seminary, it is hoped, that many able and faithful labourers will go forth to reap the whitening harvest. The state of this Seminary is at once promising and critical. It is under the immediate superintendance and instruction of two able Professors, who devote their whole time laboriously to the education of the youth committed to their charge. The number of these youth has already been as great as twenty-four; and if the means of supporting the establishment shall be furnished, there is the most flattering
* A circumstance of peculiar interest to the church, occurred lately in one of the Western towns of Virginia. “A pious young man was employed to sell on the day of election Bibles for the Bible Society; who, having disposed of them, sent for an additional quantity. The person who applied for them is a pure descendant of him who "as a prince had power with God and with men and prevailed." But he is converted to the doctrine of the cross; has been baptized in the name of our crucified but adored Master; is a member of Messiah's church militant; lives in the faith and hope of "the truth as it is in Jesus," and adorns the doctrine of God our Saviour. Behold this Israelite, carrying in the presence of a vast assembly of citizens Stereotype Bibles, and exerting himself to increase the dispersion of the word of life! The few laden with that Gospel which his Fathers rejected!
prospect that it will become a fruitful nursery for the Church. But unless these means shall be furnished speedily and liberally, every prospect will be clouded, and the raised expectations of many of the friends of Zion utterly disappointed. The Directors of that Seminary have reported a statement of the assistance which has been furnished by benevolent associations of females, to such of the Theological students as need pecuniary aid, which has surprised, gratified, and exceedingly rejoiced their fathers and brethren in the church. Let them proceed, and abound in these works of pious benevolence, so worthy of them, and so ornamental to our holy religion; and let all of both sexes, who witness their liberality, resolve to go and do likewise.
In this review we rejoice. Who is a God like unto our God, that passeth by the transgressions of the remnant of his heritage, and will not retain his anger forever, because he delighteth in mercy!
But we leave this pleasing retrospect. We turn with grief from these scenes of verdure and delight, to that extensive waste, where no verdure animates; that barren heath, on which there is no dew, nor rain from the Lord. Between three and four hundred of our Congregations are destitute of the stated ministrations of a preached gospel. Thousands in this land of vision, are destroyed for lack of knowledge; thousands suffering a famine, not a famine of bread, nor a thirst for water, but of hearing the words of the Lord. And even in the midst of gospel privileges, we behold very many and very large portions of our Church in a state of deplorable stupidity. The same rain and sunshine, that ripen the wheat for the garner of the Great Husbandman, appear to be ripening the tares for the unquenchable flame. We have also too much evidence of awful declension among many of the professed followers of Jesus Christ. In very many of our congregations, the past year has been a season of chilling indifference toward divine things. Seasons when the people of God were animated with fervent zeal for the promotion of the divine glory, have given way to seasons, when the pitiable attachment to earth, the pursuit of lying vanities that cannot profit, unhappy and needless dissentions, have superseded, and almost eradicated the once
tender solicitude for the accomplishment of God's gracious designs in favour of his people. Oh! how shall we speak of that criminal indifference toward the cause, for which, the Babe of Bethlehem was bathed in tears, the Son of God crimsoned with blood! Jerusalem is almost forgotten. Zion's fair heritage lies desolate. The spirit, the maxims, and the policy of the world, begin in some instances, to be intimately interwoven with the discipline and policy of the church. The tenderest and the strongest bands of union, in some churches, begin to be severed. That noxious weed, the spirit of party, while it embitters the sweetness, and poisons the life of vital godli ness, is unnerving the vigour of Christian exertion. Connected with these foreboding symptoms, there is a melancholy prevalence of vice and immorality. Profane swearing, intemperance, Sabbath breaking, and other immoralities, exist in many places to an alarming degree, threatening to sap the foundation of our religious and civil institutions.
From our brethren in the New England States, we have received very interesting information. From the General Association of Connecticut, we learn, that numerous revivals of religion have taken place in that state the past year; particularly in the city of Hartford, in the congregations of East Hartford, Oxford, Weathersfield, Simsbury, North Coventry, Litchfield, Milton and South Farms. These revivals have, under God, been occasioned, and promoted by the preaching of the great doctrines of the Reformation. In some instances, this work of divine grace has been slowly progressive; in others, sudden and powerful; but in all, silent, deep, and apparently genuine. The moral influence of this work of grace has been eminently salutary, and signally manifested, in unusual and general solicitude for the suppression of vice, and the promotion of morality.
From the General Association of Massachusetts Proper, we learn that the cause of truth, in opposition to Socinian and Arian errors, is on the whole advancing, though not rapidly. A number of revivals of religion have taken place in this state, particularly in the towns of Gloucester, Lee, Long-Meadow and Stockbridge. Some favourable appearances are exhibited at Falmouth, and in
several places, in the western part of the state. The number of students in the Theological Seminary at Andover, is about sixty. The greater part of the present members of Williams College, are professors of religion. Spirited and persevering efforts are likewise here making for the reformation of morals.
From the General Convention of the state of Vermont, we hear some things to deplore, and some, that are matter of rejoicing. In those places that are adjacent to the seat of the war there has been an awful defection from good morals, and a lamentable increase of bold and daring vices. A few towns have been favoured with special outpourings of the Divine Spirit, particularly Brideport and Pawlet. Of the members of Middlebury College we are happy to learn there are about fifty who have it in view to devote themselves to the work of the ministry.
On the whole, the Assembly cannot but feel, that the cause of religion and morality has been signally advanced the past year. Notwithstanding all the sin and wretchedness of our world, the past year has been a year of joy to our churches. The Lord seems to have come out of his place to redeem Zion with judgments, and her converts with righteousness. While, with one hand, he is pulling down strong holds, and casting down imaginations; with the other, he is raising Jerusalem from the dust, and clothing her with the garments of strength, and salvation. The same voice that is proclaiming the day of vengeance of our God, is also proclaiming the acceptable year of the Lord. The night is far spent, the day is at hand. The darkness is past. Already is the command gone forth to the tribes of the wilderness and the islands of the sea, Arise, shine, O Zion! for thy light is come, and the glory of the Lord is risen upon thee, and the Gentiles shall come to thy light, and kings to the brightness of thy rising. It is too late a period, Christians, to sit down, and fold your arms in the gloom of discouragement and inactivity. Yes, it is too late a period. The mountains of ignorance and idolatry will welcome the feet of them that publish good tidings; the Wilderness of this Western world will blossom as the rose; the altars of the East will be overturned; the images of Moloch will be broken down and
the only question is, whether the work shall be performed, and the reward enjoyed by others, or by you? O brethren, our hearts beat high with hope. Will the Lord cast off forever? Will his anger smoke against the sheep of his pasture? O God! plead thine own cause! Amen.
The following persons were appointed by the General Association of Connecticut to certify the regular standing of travelling preachers, viz.
Rev. Messrs. Nathan Perkins, D. D. William Robinson, Benjamin Trumbull, D. D. John Elliot, Joseph Strong, D. D. Samuel J. Mills, Lyman Beecher, Fre derick W. Hotchkiss, and Nathan Williams, D. D.
By the General Association of New-Hampshire, viz. Rev. Messrs. Asa M'Farland, D. D. William F. Rowland, D. D. John H. Church, Eli Smith, Ethan Smith, Aaron Hall, Abijah Winer, Drury Fairbank,
and Moses Bradford.
By the General Convention of Vermont, viz.
Rev. Messrs. Sylvester Sage, John Fitch, Bancroft Fowler, Martin Tullar, Heman Ball, Thomas A. Merrill, Publius V. Booge, and John Griswold.
Resolved, That the Rev. Messrs. Isaac V. Brown, and William C. Shenck, be a committee to dispose of the interest on monies in the hands of the trustees of the college of New-Jersey for the ensuing year, and report on the subject to the next Assembly.
Resolved, That the conduct of the committee of missions in publishing a pamphlet entitled "Missionary Intelligence" be approved; and that it be recommended to the Presbyteries, to take measures for circulating among their churches the interesting information contained in that pamphlet.
Resolved, That the following missionaries be appointed, and that the following Presbyteries be authorized to employ missionaries, on missionary ground within their respective bounds.