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of Major-General in the army of the United States, he was permitted to take the command of two thousand young men, who being regularly disciplined, became the flower of the American army. They were equipped throughout at his own expense; and for his bravery, military skill, and successes, he had the confidence of his men, of Washington, and Congress. Being highly honoured, and having returned home in the time of the French revolution, he was appointed Commander-in-Chief of the national guards, and commander of all the militia in France. But shortly he is accused, and a price set on his head. He escapes from the army, and after many most degrading reproaches and insults, at last is delivered up to the Austrian government, and confined in one of the cells of the prison at Olmutz. The sufferings of La Fayette in this dreary abode, brought him to the borders of the grave. His confinement was five years; that of his wife and daughters, twenty-two months. If all the circumstances attending his imprisonment should be taken into consideration, a parallel case of injustice and cruelty could scarcely be found in the annals of history. Now let us turn our thoughts to his arrival and reception at NewYork, in the year 1824: Let us only contemplate his tour through the United States, and hint at the honours which he received from this nation; then enough will be told of him.

Again: In the year 1774, Louis XVI, ascends the throne of France. But, in a few years, the condition of the nation is so alarming, that the royal family are obliged to escape from Paris. They are taken and brought back, and suffer the most inhuman treatment. The king and royal family are imprisoned, accused, condemned, and executed. In the time of their arrest and confinement, they experienced the most cruel abuse. Their horrid execution is too affecting and shocking at this time to be related. What contrasts in the condition of Louis XVI. king

of France! Thus a cursory view of two personages has been taken, to show that not only the history of nations, but that of individuals, is often important and interesting.

Still there is a history vastly more important, and infinitely more interesting. This is the history of the church, or a description of the trials and prosperity of Zion. Her king is the Lord of hosts; her dominion is an everlasting dominion; and all her subjects shall finally wear crowns of glory for ever and ever. Her chief tower is heaven; and all the angels of God are her guards. She is styled the perfection of beauty; for in her militant state, her subjects are the peculiar chosen people of her King; and in her triumphant state, they are the citizens of the new Jerusalem above. Well, then, may the Psalmist exclaim, Walk about Zion, and go round about her; tell the towers thereof.

In the early ages of the world, there were preachers of righteousness, among whom Noah was distinguished. But religious instructers were chiefly Patriarchal, till the time of Moses. Then the Levites were the priests for the Jewish nation. Whilst Jerusalem was in splendour, the people were called upon to go round the city in solemn procession; and, while they joyfully praised and blessed the Lord, to mark all the towers, walls, and palaces, observing that not one of them had been in the least injured by her formidable invaders. This would tend the more deeply to impress their minds, and prepare them faithfully and diligently to preserve the memory of these interesting events, for the benefit of future generations.

But says Solomon, The name of the Lord is a strong tower; the righteous runneth into it and is safe. Before the advent of the Saviour, the Lord had not only a seed to serve him, but there were eminent patriarchs and prophets, who were Zion's watchmen; and even the angels were her messengers and warriours.

Their tents were pitched in the midst of her; and frequently they fought her battles, and led her on victorious. But this subject will be chiefly confined to events which have transpired in the church, since the days of Christ and his apostles.

The darkest season was chosen for the appearance of the Son of God, the light and life of the world. The New Testament makes known the out pourings of the Holy Spirit, the persecutions and success of the church, during the first century. In the reign of Trajan, Ignatius was an important pillar in the church. Much did he encourage and strengthen christians, who were persecuted in diverse places. Polycarp was a bold champion for the defence of truth in his life; and his martyrdom was a bulwark for the support and propagation of Christianity. In his days, the holy martyrs sustained the most dreadful tortures for their faith in Christ; evincing indeed, that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory, that shall be revealed in them. The name of Cyprian is distinguished in church history. He was a faithful servant of his Lord and master; and an ornament to the church. In Asia, one Maximus was brought before Optimus the proconsul, who inquired after his condition. I was born free, says he, but I am the servant of Jesus Christ. Are you a christian? Though a sinner, yet I am a christian. After persuasions and tortures, he was ordered to be stoned to death. Whilst the persecution was raging with unremitting fury, Cyprian thus addresses the faithful: Heavenly things now succeed earthly; great things, small; and eternal, those that are fading. After a variety of exercises and toils amongst friends and open enemies, by having his head severed from his body by a sword, rested at length in Jesus the magnanimous and benevolent spirit of Cyprian of Carthage.

In the fourth century in the persecution under Dioclesian, edicts were published, by which men of the

Christian religion, of whatever rank or degree, were deprived of all honour and dignity, and exposed to torture. Churches were ordered to be levelled with the ground; and the sacred books to be consumed by fire. Persons of dignity were to be disgraced and the common people to be made slaves, if they persisted in Christianity. A most systematick and laboured effort was made to extinguish the gospel of Christ. Theodosia, a Tyrian virgin of eighteen years of age, was put to death for owning and countenancing some Christian prisoners. Another, named Ennathas, was dragged by violence to the judge, whipped, and burnt to death. For eight years, both in the east and west, the keenest malice was exerted in this terrible and bloody persecution.

Respecting Constantine, he was an Emperour full of zeal for the propagation of the only divine religion. By his edicts he restores every thing to the church, of which it had been deprived; indemnifies those who had suffered; honours pastors; and recommends to governours of provinces, to promote the gospel. Notwithstanding, he was opposed by men of power and influence, who were corrupt in doctrine and immoral in their lives. In this and succeeding ages, ecclesiastical councils and synods were assembled in order to determine what is sound doctrine, in opposition to heresy.

In the reign of Thrasamond, two hundred and twenty bishops were sent into exile. From this circumstance we may see, that the persecution must have been extensive.

The ninth century is considered as belonging to what is called the dark ages. For several centuries, the proper-description is a land of drought and of the shadow of death. Here and there, indeed a glimmering ray of the Sun of Righteousness appears; but it is in vain to look for any steady lustre of evangelical truth and holiness. The tenth century is considered as remarkable above all others for the

scarcity of writers, and men of learning and eminent piety. Opposition began to be made by a few, to the corruptions and abominations in the church of Rome. Church history is perhaps the least interesting at this period.

The thirteenth century may be considered as the dawning of the reformation. Claudius, of Turin, may be accounted as the first real, protestant character; and may be considered as a blessing to the church and to mankind. The name of Wickliff is dear to every enlightened zealous christian: as he so vehemently opposed the whole doctrine of Popish indulgencies. At this period the Lollards endured distressing sufferings. The story concerning John Brown, is worthy of notice. He was brought to Ashford and confined in the stocks, towards evening. One of his female domesticks happened to become acquainted with his situation, and instantly carried home to her mistress the afflicting news. His mournful wife came and sat near him all the night, and heard him relate the melancholy facts of all that had happened to him. His treatment had been barbarous in the extreme. His feet had been placed upon hot burning coals, and kept there till they were burnt to the bones. Notwithstanding, Brown would not deny the faith; but patiently endured the pain, fighting manfully the good fight. To his wife he then said, They have burnt my feet till I cannot set them on the ground; they have done so to make me deny my Lord; but, I thank God they will never be able to make me do that. If I should deny him here, he would deny me hereafter. Therefore, I pray thee, continue as thou hast begun, and bring up thy children in the fear of God. Thy husband is to be consumed at the stake to-morrow. When expiring,he lifted up his hands, and uttered the most fervent prayers; particularly the words of the Psalmist, Into thy hands, I commend my spirit; for thou hast redeemed me, O Lord, thou God of truth. How must the mind of

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