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good minister most certainly will pay to the real interests of all the precious souls committed to his charge, without respect of persons; but a mean compliance with the humours and prejudices of men, whether high or low, rich or poor, in order to gain their good will, at the expense of duty and conscience. There is a certain dignity of character, unconnected with pride, which all of us should endeavour to possess, and the want of which will always render a man despicable, disdaining with equal scorn the censure of a prejudiced multitude, or the frown of an overbearing great man. It is of importance to remember, that though we are appointed of God, the servants of the people for Christ's sake, yet it is in such a manner that we are at the same time to bear a kind of rule and authority over them: and this rule and authority, whoever will exercise according to the dictates of conscience, must become obnoxious to many; by the consciously guilty he will be traduced, avoided, perhaps hated, and the best may be so; but there is no fear that he will ever be despised. Let this be our rule then, in our conduct with the people, never to aim at purchasing their good-will, with the loss of a good conscience; to consult their real welfare rather than their taste; to endeavour by all means to make them truly good, rather than to give them

ground to entertain a good opinion of themselves; in a word, to try by gentle methods to dispel their prejudices, and neither fawningly fall in with them, nor haughtily scorn them. It is easy to see, that from the pride and self-love which are so natural to man, one who acts in this manner may for a season be very unacceptable, and that he who acts otherwise may be for a season caressed; but it is as easy to see what will be the case in process of time : perseverance in meaning, and in acting worthily, will meet with the due reward of reputation at last; unwearied endeavours to be agreeable may succeed for a while, but will undoubtedly be treated with just contempt in the end. But on the other hand, what can he propose to himself, who studies by every means to be unpopular?-who on all occasions must be expressing resentment and contempt of the people. Is this the way to recommend unto them the gospel? is this the way to win them to Christ? It is scarcely possible to observe violent abuse of this kind, without suspecting that the people have begun the quarrel; that the rage of disappointment in missing popularity determines such a procedure as much as the manly freedom of sentiment which he pretends: for there is not, I dare say, that person living, who would not wish to be well thought and well spoken of, if it were consistent with justice:--a contrary method of thinking and acting, I shall hardly be brought to account a proof of very great wisdom; as indeed I can conceive nothing more unaccountable, more contemptible, than the whole of such a conduct. The

Fifth and last source of contempt, which I shall mention, is, immoderate attachment to party and politics. Of all the men in the world, the clergy of at least this part of the kingdom*, seem, from every circumstance, placed farthest out of the circle of politics; is it not then both ridiculous and contemptible for men of this character and profession to strain and bustle out of their proper sphere, and thrust into one where they have, that is, ought to have, no manner of concern?But the mischief is, we are involved in parties and politics of our own, in conducting which, while we are so blind as to imagine we are doing God good service, his service, strictly and truly so called, is on all hands too much neglected. I would not be thought to recommend indifference about any thing that has a relation to the church of Christ. Matters of government, of discipline, and even of form, must be attended unto: no good subject and son of the church will ever wish to have these dispensed with: but this much may be said with truth and safety--that they occupy only the second place in the business of a minister, and that when they become sole or primary objects, matters of infinitely higher moment must be slighted. Before we can become members of this church, we all must make, and have made this solemn profession, “ That zeal for the ho“ nour of God, love to Jesus Christ, and desire “ of saving souls, are our great motives and chief « inducements, to enter into the function of the

* This discourse was delivered in Scotland.

holy ministry.”—To lose sight of those great objects then, to “ leave the word of God and

serve tables," is to be guilty of a crime too black to name. It is very evident, that violence of spirit this way, is too ready to incroach upon the great principles of justice, and honesty, and decency; for the man is yet unborn, who, launching into the vast ocean of politics, can say

with certainty, “ thus far I will go, and no farther." The mind is necessarily whetted, the balance of the soul is lost, the malevolent passions are roused on both sides. Acrimony takes possession of the heart—the partizans soon come to entertain a hearty contempt of each other, and the impartial observers, if any such there be, can hardly fail to despise both; for it must sensibly affect the most ordinary observer, to see the noble powers of reason and eloquence shamefully misapplied in supporting or pulling down a favourite or obnoxious cause, which might be so successfully employed in edifying the body of Christ, and in destroying the empire of vice and irreligion. When, O my God! shall we behold factions lost, swallowed up, in love to thee, in love to precious immortal souls, in love to one another? The contention were glorious indeed who should do most for our great master, who should most effectually promote the interests of his kingdom over the hearts of men, who should be the happy instrument of bringing most sons unto glory. Which brings me to the

Second general head, namely, to point very briefly what appear to be the most probable means of escaping contempt.-And the

First and great point certainly is, to cultivate in ourselves the christian spirit and temper—to set the example of our blessed Lord constantly before us—to be unfeignedly, strenuously, uniformly good. There is a kind of charm in true goodness, which all, even the most abandoned, must feel and revere. The want of it is not to be made up by the possession of all other qualities put together, however great, however shin

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