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is power in fear, in the fear of hell: and ministers must be allowed to preach the doctrine of hell, or all their preacbing will be vain and nugatory. Let it be done in the just proportion; above all, let it be with the right spirit, a tender spirit. The denouncing prophet ought to be a weeping prophet; his warnings and uttered woes accompanied with his tears; then will there be a melting and subduing efficacy.
And here we strike upon one of the great difficulties of preaching on these old foundations. It lies in the fact, that preaching has been so long, and frequent, and faithful. Jonah's was a new message ; uttered in unaccustomed ears; at the first sound of it those ears were eager and erect, and those limbs shook with the fear of the coming woe. It was so well adapted, and all so fresh, that the people were arrested and must deeply affected. But, now, truth, which came down divinely arrayed, has grown threadbare from age and use, is cast out and goes begging. The people have had so much of it that thev do not care much about it; they have come to hold it very cheap. They have heard it till hearing is mere habit, or decency, or ceremony. It has been heard, till it has lost much of its power to interest and amuse the mind. That oft-used phrase-gospel-hardened, is, perhaps, rhetorically barbarous, but it is terribiy significant---gospel hardened!---hardened by such an instrument, by such a manifestation, a revelation of God's love, solicitude for the soul, His invitations and earnest wooings to win it, His melting influence upon it, how could these harden but by perversion and resistance ? The guilt of such a course, who can tell ? And the condemnation, who can describe or indicate its severity and weight ?----Dr. Shepard in Biblical Repository.
MANY who fully believe the doctrine of future retribu. tions, appear to lose sight of the continuity of our existence, They look upon death as a sort of chemistry which destroys our personal identity, and transforms us into beings essentially different from what we are in the present life, Thus the intimate connection between probation and retribution is practically dissolved. The doctrine of future rewards and punishments loses its power, unless we keep in mind that we are to carry into the eternal world the same souls, with all their faculties, which we possess here. This truth is taught with terrible distinctness and power, in the parable of the rich man and Lazarus. These two individuals are followed the one from his poverty and sufferings to his rest in Abraham's bosom ; the other from his lordly palace and sumptuous fare to his place of torment. The latter, though occupied with his present agonies, still remembers the past, summoning before him the scenes of his earthly career, and Abraham says to him "Son, remember that thou, in thy life-time receivedst thy good things, and likewise Lazarus evil things, but now he is comforted, and thou art tormented "
We have here presented for our consideration the office of memory in the retributions of the future world. Let us inquire
I. Whether there is satisfactory evidence that the memory of earthly scenes will be retained in eternity. The text, it may be acknowledged, is a parable, and does not necesa sarily refer to a specific case. But though our Saviour might not have had reference to a particular individual, yet the facts themselves must be real, otherwise the parable teaches a falsehood. To represent a lost soul as recurring to the events of its earthly existence, when lost souls have no such power, would be a flagrant misrepresentation, such as we cannot charge upon our Saviour, We grant that this is not a historical narrative of a particular individual who remembered, but an imaginary case, to illustrate the general truth, that the soul in a future world does remember.
Indeed, this is implied in the very nature of retribution. The soul is to be punished for the deeds done in the body; and unless it remember those deeds, how can it know for what it is punished ? How can conscience, whose stings constitute an important element in this punishment, inflict remorse for sing which are not remembered? How can God be vindicated for the infliction of the curse of his law? How can every mouth be stopped, and the whole world become guilty before God, as the result of unremembered transgressions ? The nature of retribution, and the end of God's government in it, require that the soul should remember,
Moreover, the philosophy of the mind itself teaches the same thing. There is no proof that any part of the mind's knowledge is ever lost. We forget, that is, ideas pass from our thoughts, and are lost for the time, but reflection, and association, and various other causes, can bring back these lost possessions, and make present to our thoughts the events of years gone by. Go to the place of your birth, and look at the objects that were familiar to you in early days, and the scenes and events of childhood, which have been gone from you for years, will come thronging up from the storehouse of memory, and you will almost think yourself a child again. The past is not forever gone, and at the appropriate signal it can all be summoned before us.
And is there any evidence that death will break this chain of memory ? The ancients were accustomed to write upon parchments; and when they had no further use for what was written, it was erased, and the same surface was covered again. Such a parchment was called a palimpsest. A modern process has been discovered, by which the first impressions on the palimpsest may be rendered visible, and thus records that were lost for ages have been found. The human mind is a “palimpsest,” On its tablets many successive impressions have been written. The early ones have been erased and forgotten, and others imprinted in their place ; but the spiritual chemistry of the future world will bring to light those hidden characters, and the long lost records of our past lives will be recovered and remembered.
Many facts, however, might be adduced, bearing upon this position. We know, that in some cases, as the clay taber
nacle tumbles down, the memory seems to be quickened with a new life. Persons on the very brink of the grave have been known to relate, with wonderful minuteness, circum stances which occurred many years before, and had been long forgotten. Sometimes they have even used a language which they had learned in childhood, but in which they had not been able to converse in years. A Lutheran clergyman in Philadelphia asserts, that he has often heard aged German 8, on their death-beds, pray in the German language, which they had not spoken for sixty years. It is also related by persons rescued from drowning, after consciousness had ceased, that during the few moments of their consciousness while in the water, their whole lives seemed to rush in a torrent of recollection through their minds. These, and many other facts of a similar character, show that the powers of mind do not partake of the body's decay, and they distinctly foreshadow its increased activity in its disembodied state. And what is there in death, either to impair the powers of the mind or break the chain of its exercises ? Why should the soul be more affected in its qualities by the dissolution of the whole body, than by the ambutation of a limb ? It escapes from its prison, aud changes its residence, but does not lose its identity, nor surrender its powers. It wiil anticipate the future ; it will be conscious of the present ; it will remember
II. Not only will the memory exist in the future world, but it will probably possess far greater activity and energy than in the present life, and thus be enabled to recall the past, with a distinctness and vividness which are now wholly unknown.
I admit that we are now going beyond the domain of certain knowledge, but we may make inferences with considerable certainty, from facts which are well known. It is rational to suppose that the mind will acquire new activity, by its emancipation from the body; that when it throws off this mortal coil, it will start up into a new and more vigorous life ; and why should not memory receive a new impulse as well as the other powers ? That our knowing faculty will be vastly increased, is expressly asserted in the Word of God. Why not, then, the remembering faculty, which is so intimately associated with it?
But there will be circumstances connected with the lost which must greatly facilitate the remembering of earthly scenes. There will be nothing to divert the mind from the view and study of the gloomy past. The lost soul will be excluded from all society except the society of those as solitary and wretched as itself, and shut up to its own melancholy reflections. The saved, we have reason to believe, will be actually engaged in ministries of good, and in this will consist no small part of their happiness.
But the lost
will have nothing to do but to“ remember.” They are spoken of in the Scriptures as shut up in prison, as bound in chains. They will be constrained to reflect-they will find no other employment. There will be nothing to turn off the mind from its dismal work of remembering. There will be no bargains to be made—no schemes of ambition to be formed—no schemes of gaiety and mirth to drown his thoughts and keep them from straying back over the past. There will be nothing to do but to remember, and the memory will act with terrible energy and effect.
You know what reflection does for a guilty soul even in this world. Peter was very comfortable for a while, after denying his Master, but “ when he thought thereon he wept.” Judas, as soon as he came to reflect, saw, as he had not seen it before, the enormity of his sin in betraying his Master, and in bitter anguish of soul cast down the price of the Saviour's blood, and rushed out and hanged himself. Herod was so troubled by the remembrance that he had murdered John the Baptist, that he could not think Christ was any one else than his murdered victim raised from the grave. This, said he, is John the Baptist : he is risen from the dead. How often have criminals shown no uneasiness in conse: quence of their crimes, till they come to reflect in the solitude of a dungeon. Then they remembered, and every thought of the past rolled, as in billows of fire, through their souls. Why is it, that solitary confinement, without labor, is regarded as the severest form of imprisonment? It is because the lonely victim can find nothing to do but to remember. And this incessant remembering has often proved more than the mind could bear, and reason has been driven from her throne. Philanthropists have protesed against the cruelty of thus compelling the criminal continually to remember.
In the ol l State-prison in Connectitut, this form of punishment was employed as the extreme of severity. There was an apartment of the prison called the “sounding-room," which was round--a cavity dug from the solid rock. In this spherical cell the refractory convict was chained to the floor, and left to his solitary reflections. This treatment was always successful. The stoutest heart could not endure it long. * Give me something to do," he would say,“ or at least something to look at; or if that cannot be, give me a cell that is not round—one that has some inequality, or corner, or crevice—something on which I can fix my aching evesomething to occupy my aching thought.” 'Yet this was but a few days, and much of this time was spent in sleep. And if memory can do such a work for a guilty soul, during a few short hours of reflection in an earthly prison, oh! what an array of bitter, appalling thoughts will it summon before the soul during its endless reflections in the prison of despair!