Vol. 28, Summer 2024

  • A Famous Precentor
  • Rev. Henry Grey, D.D.: The Weeping Penitent and the Disdainful Pharisee
  • Rev. Alexander Moody Stuart: The Relying Weakness of Love
  • Rev. Robert S. Candlish, D.D.: The Consolations of Christ Adapted to the State and Character of His People
  • Rev. Thomas Chalmers, D.D.: The Restlessness of Human Ambition
  • Rev. J. Logan Shelton: Revival and Revivalism: A Book Review

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Recent Articles

The Freedom of Gospel Worship from Local Circumstances and National Peculiarities Asserted

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To establish purity of worship in the earth was an undertaking worthy of the Son of God. In the opinion of some, we believe, it had been a nobler enterprise of philanthropy to deal directly with man’s social state, to have rectified its inequalities, and provided for the secular interests of humanity, putting aside meanwhile the question of religion as of inferior importance—a world without God, or a God without worship, well according with their views. We suppose they would regulate heaven itself on the same principles and haply find fault with its blest inhabitants for making so much ado about devotion.

Man’s Redemption the Joy of Angels

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In further illustrating the interesting fact stated in the text, viz., that the sufferings of Messiah, and the glories which resulted from his sufferings, are a subject which strongly engages the attention of angels, it may be proper in the first place, to advert shortly to some things respecting the nature, character, and employments of these celestial spirits; and then, in the second place, to inquire what in the mysteries of redemption, as a manifestation of divine glory, makes the subject so deeply interesting to angels.

Importunate Prayer

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It is now many years since Mr. Stewart of Liverpool called the attention of Christians to the important duty of united and earnest prayer for the outpouring of the Holy Spirit, for the purpose of reviving true religion at home, and promoting its dissemination throughout the world. At that time he recommended ministers to preach upon the subject, and in other ways to diffuse information with regard to the person and work of the Holy Ghost.

Communion with God

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The pride and self-sufficiency of the natural heart of man in considering a passage such as this, are ever prone to wrest it to his own destruction, and to convert that which, when rightly understood, contains a most glorious truth, into a poisonous and deadly error. Men of legal and Arminian spirits contend that we are hereby taught that, in the great work of conversion, the first effective movement is and must be on the part of man—that the sinner first, of his own free will, returns unto God, and that then, but not till then, does the grace of God take effect upon his soul.

John Davidson and The General Assembly of 1596

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In this article, we consider one of the most remarkable post-Reformation revivals in Scottish church history. It concerns what happened at the General Assembly of the Scottish Reformed Church, in 1596. It is little known by Christians in Scotland today; it was a long time ago. Yet one contemporary historian, David Calderwood (1575–1650), was to write that “This year [1596] is a remarkable year in the history of the Kirk of Scotland.”

Seek and Ye Shall Find

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Wisdom continues still to cry unto men with the affectionate authority of a parent. The incarnation of the Son is God’s grand utterance to mankind. The Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us. He came to make known the Father. “No man hath seen God at any time: the only begotten Son who is in the bosom of the Father, He hath declared him.”

What is Experimental Religion?

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There are two extremes into which professing Christians of the present day are very apt to fall. While one class adopt a system of doctrinal sentiments without any practical regard to their influence on the heart and on the life, another satisfy themselves with the simple performance of social duties. Into the religious scheme of the former, there enter few, if any, of those holy affections, and little of that sublime practical virtue which the gospel requires. Into the scheme of the latter, there enter few of the leading principles of the Christian revelation, and a very small portion of that spirituality of sentiment and of feeling, which constitutes the very essence of vital godliness.

The Gospel Mystery of Sanctification

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“Are ye so foolish,” asked Paul of the Galatians, “having begun in the Spirit, are ye now made perfect in the flesh?” (Gal. 3:3) Because of our legal bias, we are prone to strive after perfection according to the tenor of the covenant of works, which is nothing but a striving in the flesh. This causes many to be discouraged, and thereby Satan tempts them to give up seeking after holiness at all. However, the way of being sanctified and thus enabled to perform the duties of the law is revealed only in the gospel. Hence, practical godliness is a “gospel mystery” (1 Tim. 3:16). Contrary to fleshly expectations, the reason that sin will not have dominion over the Christian is because he is not under law (namely, not under it as a covenant), but under grace (Rom. 6:14).

Depression

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We are much concerned at the continuance of your gloomy apprehensions, which, though your own power cannot remove, yet it is your duty to oppose to the uttermost. When God clothes the heavens with blackness, and makes sackcloth their covering, and shuts up in the prison house where no light can be perceived, it is natural to take a kind of pleasure in yielding to despondency, and in defending it by many arguments. But to resist this tendency requires self-denial, and is the path of duty, however difficult.

The Singing of Psalms

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No part of the Christian worship is more plainly warranted by the oracles of God than the ordinance of Singing of Psalms. The ancient Hebrews practised it at the Red Sea before their system of ceremonial worship was prescribed them by God (Exod. 15). It was preferred to the most pompous sacrifices, even while the ceremonial observances remained in their vigour (Ps. 69:30–31). The divine obligation to it remained in full force when the ceremonial law, with all its rites, was abolished (Ps. 47:1–7; 67:4; 100:1–4; Eph. 5:19; Col. 3:16; James 5:13). We have it enforced with the most engaging example of the angels who kept their first estate (Job 38:6–8; Luke 2:13–14; Rev. 5:11–12), and of apostles and saints (Acts 16:25; 1 Cor. 14:15, etc.); nay, of our Redeemer himself (Matt. 26:30). This exercise, performed in a manner suited to the dignity of the glorified state, will be the everlasting employ of established angels and ransomed men (Isa. 26:19; 51:11; Rev. 5:9–13).

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