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this means the mind has time given to consider the nature of the petition, and our own need of the thing we are about to ask, and as we daily need the same things, there is no occasion for a continual variety. Besides, a form of prayer affords security that nothing unsuitable to the majesty of God, and the state of a sinful creature, be found in the language we use.
5. But the grand excellence of the Church service is, that so large a portion of the pure word of God is imbodied, and that the liturgy may be said to be “ the word of God converted into devotional exercises." Why then are you a member of this Church ?
1. Because her government is episcopal, that is, by bishops; this being the mode of church government which existed in the primitive Church, and was founded by the apostles of our Lord.
2. Because her doctrines are fixed by articles of religion, which are scriptural and according to godliness.
3. Because her mode of worship is primitive and scriptural, and well qualified to promote edification. Her liturgy is scriptural in its doctrine, comprehensive in the addresses to the throne of grace, and therefore fit for general
4. Because a separation from a Church formed on the apostolic model, tends to encourage a spirit of division in the Church of Christ, which is undoubtedly contrary to the word of God. Mark them which cause divisions and offences, contrary to the
doctrines which ye have learned, and avoid them. Rom.
xvi. 17. Litany. May it please thee to rule and govern thy holy
Church universal in the right way. Collect.We pray for thy holy Church universal, that it may
be so guided and governed by thy good Spirit, &c. 5th Sunday after Epiphany.- Keep thy Church and household
continually in thy true religion. 16th Sunday after Trinity.-Let thy continual pity cleanse
and defend thy Church. Collect, St. Matthias' day.-Grant that thy Church being alway
preserved from false apostles, may be ordered and guided by
faithful and true pastors.. Communion Service.-Inspire continually the universal Church
with the Spirit of truth, unity, and concord.
NOTE. THE HOLY CATHOLIC CHURCH, VISIBLE AND MYSTICAL. HOOKER distinguishes between the Church' visible and the Church mystical, (called also invisible, because its members as such cannot be distinguished,) and says of the latter: "Whatsoever we read in Scripture concerning the endless love and saving mercy which God showeth towards his Church, the only proper subject thereof is this Church. Con. cerning this flock it is that our Lord and Saviour hath promised, I give unto them eternal life, and they shall never perish, neither shall any pluck them out of my hand.” This distinction is, therefore, of so much importance that some further explanation of its nature appears desirable. The reader will doubtless be pleased to receive it in the language of the Rev. Legh RICHMOND, one of ihe brightest ornaments of the Church in the present century. It is quoted from a series of articles written by him for the Christian Observer in 1804, which, to use the words of Mr. Grimshawe, his biographer, “claims a just title to distinction among pro. ductions of this class, whether we consider the ability and conclusiveness of its reasoning, the extensive acquaintance that it manifests with the writ. ings of the Reformers, and with the genuine principles and doctrines of the Church of England, or the conciliatory spirit in which it is written."
“Whoever,” says Mr. Richmond,“ reads the works of Cranmer, Hooker, Jewell , Whitgift, Jackson, Hall
, Pearson, and Bacon, on the nature of the Church, will find that they expound the article of the Holy Catholic Church as, in its primary and highest acceptation, applicable only to 'that congregation of faithful and holy men who shall be saved :) and that the visible Church is constituted for the express purpose of training and building up that spiritual household, which is called in an emphatical sense the true Church. This Church is not called invisible, because the persons who compose it are not distinguishable from the rest of the world; for with a very few exception (exclusive of infants dying before baptisın,) they are all visible members of some visible Church; but because their real title to spiritual Churchmanship is only discernible to him who alone 'knowelh who are his.'"
And again :-“The view we have taken of the subject is so far from being inconsistent with a due attention to the visible constitution of the Church, that it places it on the firmest basis; as is evident from the writings of those learned and pious supporters of the Church of England, whom we have quoted in our margin, as well as of many of their contem. poraries. This view of the Church has the farther advantage of guarding the representations of its real nature, against those untenable con. clusions into which some modern writers fall, from their exclusively ascribing to its external constitution those characteristic privileges which are inseparable, indeed, from the true spiritual Church; but which only appertain to the visible Church, so far as it contains the true and invisible Church. The visible Church is a community of men, making an outward profession of the truth. The invisible Church is that portion of the visible which is sanctified by the inward possession of the truth. The former [i. e. the visible) derives its value from its containing the latter : and in proportion as it may be deemed, on scriptural ground, so to do, it has or has not a just claim to the appellation of true, holy, and catholic."
The following are the quotations from ancient and standard writers of the Church of England, cited by Mr. Richmond, with the addition of a few sentences more in continuation of the passage from Hooker, for the purpose of exhibiting his views more fully to the reader.
Archbishop Cranmer states, that amidst all the corruptions and errors of the visible Church, there always was a true and 'holy Church, so unknown to the world that no man can discern it but God alone, who only searcheth the hearts of all men, and knoweth his true children from
other that be but hastards. 'Christ is present with his holy Church, (which is holy elected people,) and shall be with them to the world's end, leading and governing them with his Holy Spirit, and teaching them all truth necessary for their salvation : and whensoever any such be gather. ed together in his name, there is he among them; and he shall not suffer the gates of hell to prevail against them. For although he may suffer them by their own frailness for a time to err, fall, and to die, yet, finally, neither Satan, hell, sin, nor eternal death, shall prevail against them. But it is not so of the Church and See of Rome, which accounteth itself to be the holy Catholic Church.'
"The Church doth not wholly err: for even in most darkness God shioeth unto his elect.' 'This Church is the pillar of truth, because it resteth upon God's word, which the true and sure foundation, and will not suffer it to err and fall; but as for the open known Church and the outward face thereof, it is not the pillar of truth otherwise than that it is (as it were) a register and treasury to keep the books of God's holy will and iestament, and to rest only thereupon.'
'If the Church proceeds further to make any new articles of the fasth besides the Scripture or contrary to the Scripture; or direct not the form of life according to the same; then it is not the pillar of truth, nor the Church of Christ, but the synagogue of Satan and the temple of Anti-christ, which both érreth itself and bring. eth into error as many as do follow it; and the holy Church of Christ is but a small herd or flock in comparison to the great multitude of them that follow Satm and Anti-christ, as Christ himself saith, and as the word of God, and the course of the world from the beginning until this day, hath declared.' (See Cranmer against Gardiner and Smith, edit. 1580, P. 405, 406.)
“Bishop Jewell maintains 'that God hath always a Church invisible, and a number of elect; neither is this our only saying, St. Paul also saith the same. 2 Tim. ii. 19.'-—The general or outward Church of God is visi. ble, and may be seen; but the very true Church of God's elect is invisible, and cannot be seen or discerned by man.'-(See the whole passage in the Defence of the Apology of the C. of E., edit. 1611, p. 361.)
“ Hooker is particularly express in his third brok of E. P. in distin. guishing the invisible and mystical Church from the visible. That Church
of Christ which we properly term his body mystical can be but one; neither can that one be sensibly discerned by any man; inasmuch as the parts thereof are some in heaven already with Christ, and the rest that are on earth (all-be-it their natural persons be visible) we do not discern under this property whereby they are truly and infallibly of that body. Only our minds by intellectual conceit are able to appreheod that such a real body there is, a body collective because it containeth a huge multitude; a body mystical because the mystery of their conjunction is removed altogether from sense. Whatsoeverwe readin Scriptureconcern. ing the endless love and saving mercy which God showeth towards his Church, the only proper subject thereof is this Church. Concerning this flock it is that our Lord and Saviour hath promised, I give unto themelernal tife, and they shall never perish, neither shall any pluck them out of my hands. They who are of this society have such marks and notes of distinc. tion from all others as are not objects unto our sense, only unto God who seeth their hearts and understandeth all their secret cogitations ; unto him they are clear and manifest.'--(See the whole of the third book.)
"Archbishop Whitgift, in his defence of the Church of England against Cartwright, observes, that there are two kinds of government in the Church, the one invisible, the other visible—the one spiritual, the other external. The invisible and spiritual government of the Church is when God, by his Spirit, gifts, and ininistry of his word, doth govern it by ruling in the hearts and consciences of men, and directing them in all things necessary to everlasting lise. This kind of government, indeed,
is necessary to salvation, and it is in the Church of the elect only. The visible and external governinent is that which is executed by man,
and consisteth of external discipline, and visible ceremonies, practised in that Church, and over that Church, that containeth in it both good and evil, which is usually called the visible Church of Christ.' (Edit. 1574, p. 80.) Bishop Pearson, commenting on Eph. v. 25-27, directs us how within the great complex body of the universal Church to find that Church to which absolute holiness doth belong.' (Exposition of the Creed, edit. 1683, p. 344.)
* This distinction is, with peculiar clearness and precision, expressed by Lord Bacon in his well known confession of faith. The same twofold character of the Church is to be found in the confession of Augsburg, in the writings of Melancthon, and in nearly all the public and private w gs of that period.
"We have inserted these quotations with a view of inviting our readers to the diligent examination of the originals, for we are convinced that the simple and scriptural manner in which those reverend fathers treated the subject of the Church, is much less liable to inisconstruction and error than that which so many now adopt. It is the only one which con. nects the genuine nature of ecclesiastical polity with the spiritual charac. ter of the true Church of Christ, and is the best calculated to preserve a just medium between the unauthorized latitudinarianism of one party, and the unbending rigidity of the other."
Extract from Bishop Griswold on the subject of this note. To the above extracts from writers of the Church of England might be added others from American authors. One only will be given, and that from the pen of a bishop whose sentiments are entitled to the highest respect, as among the most sound, judicious, and pious which have ever been submitted to the Church in this country. We refer to the Right Rev. A, V. Griswold, from one of whose sermons an extract will be found below. It forms a part of the "Walk about Zion,” by the Rev. John A. Clark, and is quoted from page 191 of that valuable and interesting work. It is accompanied by a note from Bishop Hopkins expressive of the same views as are quoted above from other writers of the same Church, and a reference to similar sentiments in Archbishop Secker's works, vol. iv. p. 327, which will be found at pp. 119. 121, of the Lectures on the Cate. chism, by this author. See also “The Walk about Zion,” p. 348, &c.
Bishop Griswold says :-“The visible Church includes those, who, in the sight of man, or to human appearance, submit to God's government: who receive the sacraments, and observe those religious rites which the gospel requires. The mystical Church includes them only, who are truly, in heart and life, what God requires of those who would be saved in Christ; who have repentance towards God, and faith towards the Lord Jesus Christ. This is sometimes called the invisible Church; because men cannot see the hearts of each other, we do not know who nor how many are possessed of those inward graces, which are neces. sary to our being justified and saved. But 'the Lord knoweth who are his;' whose names, in the language' of his word, are written in the book of lífe; or, in the language of our Church, ‘are truly members incor. porate, in the mystical body of his Son, which is the blessed company of all faithful people, and are heirs through hope of his everlasting kingdom. Our Lord speaks of this mystical body, or invisible Church, where he says, "the kingdom of God is within you it cometh not with
observa tion. Our union with the visible. Church is sacramental : that with the mystical Church is experimental.”
ON THE CREED § 8. ON THE COMMUNION OF SAINTS. What is the next article in the Creed?
6. The Communion of Saints." Who are saints ?
Christians are generally described by that name in the New Testament. How much evil he hath done to thy saints at Jerusalem. Acts
ix. 13. He came down also to the saints which dwelt at Lydda. Acts
ix. 32. And when he had called the saints and widows, &c. Acts ix. 41.
The Church of Christ is a collection of holy persons, or saints. Not that every individual composing it is truly holy in heart and conduct; for we know there are many hypocrites and wicked persons in the visible Church: but having been all admitted into it by baptism, they are in a certain sense such, as were the people of Israel, on being admitted into the Jewish Church by circumcision. On which account they are all called saints in the New Testament. How are the true saints distinguished from other people ?
They are set apart for God's use, and are separated from all that is unclean and unholy, not only outwardly but inwardly; they not only profess the gospel, but are sanctified thereby.
They are persons who are ransomed by the blood of Christ, who are hungering and thirsting after righteousness, whose heart is with God, and who are living for heaven. Ye shall be unto me a kingdom of priests, and an holy nation.
Exod. xix. 6. Nazarites separated themselves unto the Lord. Num. vi. 2. The censers were holy, because they were dedicated to God.
Num. xvi. 3. 5. 7.9. 38. 'Thou didst separate Israel to be thine inheritance. 1 Kings viü.
53. The Lord hath set apart him that is godly for himself. Ps. iv. 3. Separated unto the gospel of God. Rom. i. 1. Present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, &c. Rom. xii. 1. Ye are not your own : for ye are bought with a price. 1 Cor.
vi. 19, 20. Come out-and be ye separate. 2 Cor. vi. 17. Ye are chosen generation, &c., a peculiar people. 1 Pet. ii. 9.