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A BRIEF VIEW,
THE LAW OF GOD RECOGNISED BY A CHRISTIAN LEGISLATURE.
THERE are two laws recognised by a nation professing the Christian religion, viz. The Law of God, and the Law of the Land. It is the true glory of a nation, when, while the people obey with faithful hearts the Law of the Land, enacted by the wisdom of their legislators, they behold the instructive example of the legislators themselves obeying the Law of GOD. In what respects that law demands the attention of an assembly about to engage in legislating for the moral and social interests of a great portion of mankind, is an inquiry which, we doubt not, will experience the indulgence of the Imperial Parliament, and meet the wishes of a great part of the nation at this time.
THE DUTY OF A CHRISTIAN NATION TO PROPAGATE
THE general duty of Great Britain at this junc ́ture, in relation to Christianity, is to be collected from the answer which shall be given to the following question
"To what church or nation, in particular, does "Providence appear to have committed the charge, at this time, of extending the Religion "of Christ?"
To extend that religion is the duty of all churches. But, of these, some one will probably possess, in a greater degree than the rest, the means and power of promoting it.
That such a duty is obligatory on a Christian nation, seems unquestionable. Let us look into the Law of God. The blessed Author of our Religion delivered the following solemn charge to his disciples, just before his Ascension
"All power is given unto me in heaven and in "earth. Go ye, therefore, and teach all nations; baptising them in the name of the Father, and of "the Son, and of the Holy Ghost; teaching them
to observe all things whatsoever I have com"manded you. And, lo, I am with you ALWAY, "C even unto the end of the world. Amen."
It appears, then, that, when our Saviour said, "And, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the " end of the world," he meant to say, "I am with my Church alway unto the end of the world;" and that the charge, here addressed to his disciples, is intended for his church to the end of time.
In obedience to the Divine command, the Apostles went forth, and the church founded by the Apostles sent forth preachers, " to teach all na"tions ;" and the heavenly mission was continued with unremitting zeal and success, until the doctrine of the Gospel began to be corrupted. This corruption took place at a very early period; but the event was predicted, and became of itself an evidence of the truth of Christianity. It was not foretold that Christianity should be abolished, but that it should be corrupted*. But the resto
* "Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter "times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to "seducing spirits and doctrines of devils; forbidding to "MARRY, and commanding to abstain from MEATS, which "God hath created to be received with thanksgiving of "them which believe and know the truth." 1 Tim. iv. 1.
"This know also, that, in the last days, perilous times
ration of Christianity to its first PURITY was, in like manner, predicted: and we have seen the accomplishment of this last event. The completion of the Divine prediction adds a new confirmation to our faith, and at the same time awakens solicitude in regard to our duty at this
From a review of the whole course of history relating to the Church, this conclusion may be drawn-That, in regard to purity of doctrine, the efficiency of Christianity to contend with the principles of Paganism, is as great, if not greater, at this time, than it has been at any one period since the second century.
But our Saviour did not merely deliver a charge to his Church, enjoining it "to teach all "nations;" he also encouraged its exertions by foretelling the EFFECTS. The following are the terms of this remarkable prediction; and they cannot fail to arrest the attention of every man who is acquainted with recent events:
"shall come for men shall be-lovers of pleasures more " than lovers of God, having a form of godliness, but deny"ing the power thereof; men of corrupt minds, reprobate
concerning the faith. But they SHALL PROCEED NO "FURTHER." 2 Tim. iii. 1-9.
"And this Gospel of the kingdom SHALL be preached in ALL the world, for a witness to 66 ALL nations.”
From this prediction of Christ, from his positive injunction, and from the example of the Apostolic Church, we deduce satisfactory evidence of the truth of this proposition: "It is the duty of a Christian nation to propagate Christianity, as long as any nation shall be found upon earth which is ignorant of it."