Parish Papers eBook

Norman Macleod
This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 319 pages of information about Parish Papers.
come to love one another with a pure heart fervently, because loving the Lord?  Who would not long for such a blessed consummation!  “But, behold, if the Lord could make windows in heaven, might this thing be!” So we exclaim in our unbelief.  But, unless we have lost all faith in the power of God’s Spirit, why should we not believe that God can open the windows of heaven, and pour forth such showers of His grace that ministers shall believe what they know, and act as they teach, and be what they profess, and that thus the parched places shall rejoice and blossom as the rose.  Then, indeed, would be fulfilled the gracious promise made to a renewed Church:—­“For ye shall go out with joy, and be led forth with peace:  the mountains and the hills shall break forth before you into singing, and all the trees of the field shall clap their hands.  Instead of the thorn shall come up the fir-tree, and instead of the brier shall come up the myrtle-tree:  and it shall be to the Lord for a name, for an everlasting sign that shall not be cut off.”



It cannot be denied that very strong prejudices are entertained by many of our most intelligent, sober-minded, and sincere Christians against revivals.  It is both unjust and untruthful to allege that their real objection is against all vital godliness and genuine Christianity.  Such persons as those we allude to love both, and desire the advance of truth as truly and sincerely as any “revivalist” in the land, and much more so than many who bear the name.  But from their education, their temperament, their views of truth, and from what they have seen or heard regarding the “revival movements,” they have been led to question the reality of sudden conversions, the evidence of the instrumentalities and means ordinarily employed to effect them, and the correctness of the teaching imparted, either to awaken or build up; while other things which appeared always to accompany “a revival,” as if essential to it,—­such as the extravagant and exaggerated coarse addresses of some, the impudence, conceit, and spiritual pride of others, the thrusting aside, as if of no value, all that was quiet, sober, and truthful, and the bringing forward all that was noisy, demonstrative, talkative, and excited,—­has had such an effect on their minds that the very name of “a revival meeting” produces a feeling of repulsion and aversion as against a falsehood.

Now, we do not profess by any means to defend whatever has presented itself to public notice in any village or district as “a revival.”  A good name, whether assumed by men, meetings, or movements, does not necessarily make either of them good or worthy of their name.[A]

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Parish Papers from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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