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the Scriptural and historical knowledge which it evinces, make the reading of it a continual entertainment of the purest kind.
Miss Martineau is as open in the expression of her belief in the Humanitarian doctrine as Miss Baillie is of hers in the Arian. In this connexion the following paragraph must speak for itself.
'It cannot be necessary for Christians, when addressing Christians, to enter upon the evidence for the divine authority under which the Saviour offered his Gospel, or for the consequent divine origin of that Gospel. The name adopted by both parties is a sufficient testimony to the unity of their faith thus far. Concerning the nature of Christ, we have already declared that, in accordance with what we believe to have been the faith of the primitive ages, we regard the Saviour as human in his nature; but superhuman in his powers, and divinely appointed and sanctioned in his office. The title “ Son of God” is peculiarly and indefeasibly his own; for to no other being, as far as our knowledge extends, has so immeasurable a portion of authority, of power, of grace and truth, been vouchsafed ; in no other has dwelt “all the fulness of the Godhead bodily." The homage of reverence cannot be too fully and freely rendered to him who was with God in His manifest presence; who was one with Him in his purposes of eternal salvation to the human race; who was the exponent of those purposes, and the means of that salvation.
The homage of love cannot be too fully and freely rendered to him who suffered for our transgressions, and died for our justification ; who loved us with more than an earthly love ; who suffered in his compassion for the sins and sorrows of men, as well as in the inflictions he sustained for their sakes; and who, though wounded in spirit and tortured in body, made use of the rule, authority, and power with which he was invested, not for his own relief, but for our deliverance. To him who brought us salvation, it is little to offer deep gratitude and unbounded love. The homage of obedience cannot be too fully and freely rendered to him who was wise with the wisdom of God, pure in heart, sinless in his life, and sanctified by grace from the beginning. Even if we did not know that obedience to Christ is the way to life eternal, that obedience would be due to his divine claims : but knowing this, it should be steadfast as our faith, cheerful as our hope, and boundless as our love. Such was the obedience, such were the reverence and love of the holy Apostles ; and we desire to participate in them as fully as we join, with heart and mind, in all that they have said concerning him. They bow - pp. 7,8.
before his celestial authority, so do we. They vénerate his perfect holiness, – so do we. They bless his love, testified in his sufferings, sealed by his death, and glorified by his resurrection,
so do we. They strove to be obedient in all things, and we acknowledge the obligation incumbent on us to be so likewise ; and that we may be so, we diligently inquire what were the doctrines which he confirmed and revealed.'
The following portion of the conclusion of this volume, on the intrinsic universality and power of the Christian religion, cannot fail to be received by our readers with pleasure, and will no doubt excite in them a desire, which we ourselves entertain, that the work may be speedily republished here.
'The universal spread of Glad Tidings is a fit subject for universal rejoicing. The moral beauty of the Saviour's character is recognisable by all; the spirit of his teachings is congenial to all; and the very illustrations in which they are set forth are of an universal nature. Storms every where beat on human dwellings, and in all regions flowers spring, and the lights of heaven shine and are obscured. The filial and fraternal relations subsist every where; widowed mothers mourn over the bier of a son, and rejoicings are witnessed at marriage feasts. The parables of the Gospel are the most appropriate elementary teachings for all minds from pole to pole ; and the principles which Christ proposed command the assent of every intellect, from that of the child whom he set in the midst of his followers, to that which, exalted by all holy influences, is surrounded on its release from the grave by a throng of perfected spirits. It is for man to beware how he limits what God has thus made universal ; how he monopolizes what God designs to be diffused ; how he encumbers by human inventions that truth which divine wisdom has made free to all.
* By the Gospel, a new relation is established between Him who gives and him who receives it ; and it is for man to beware how he attempts to modify this relation, or to intrude on the special communion which it establishes. It is not in the power of man to take away any thing from the Gospel, though he may narrow the capacity of its recipients; but he must beware how he adds to it the teachings of his own low and vain imaginations. He can do nothing to impair divine truth, for it is made invulnerable by God : but he may impair and destroy its efficacy for himself and his brethren, by mistaking its nature and perverting its influences; by transferring to others the task which he may not delegate, of admitting its evidences and interpreting its commands. It is not in the power of man to silence the voice of God speaking on earth through Christ; but he must beware of listening to any other exponent of the divine will, whether or not he refer his claim to St. Peter ; whether or not he appeal to human wisdom, throned in the papal chair or attested by the unanimity of Councils; whether or not he entitle himself the Vicar of Christ on earth.
' It is not in the power of man to restrict the influences of the Gospel. What they have been, they will be ; what they have done, they will continue to effect. They will bless the spirit in its wanderings and in its retirements, making the universe the record of its history, and its inmost recesses the dwelling-place of Deity. They will restrain the excesses, chasten the emotions, and ennoble the sympathies of humanity. They will bless life and hallow the grave. They will develope themselves perpetually as ages roll on, till it shall be their lowest office to still the sighings and subdue the conflicts of the spirit ; while their highest shall still be, so to direct its pursuit of ultimate objects, so to invigorate its natural and moral powers, as to evidence to itself its ever-growing resemblance to its Maker. It is for man to beware lest he exclude himself from these influences or impair their operation by mistaking superstition for religion, and by supinely relinquishing the intellectual and spiritual liberty with which Christ has made him free.' pp. 87, 88.
One more word before we leave these volumes. We cannot resist the impression that they are auspicious signs of the advancement of a free, liberal, serious, rational, or, in short, pure Christianity among men. We feel sure, also, that they will contribute to that advancement which they so cheeringly betoken.
ART. II. — Notices of Brazil in 1828 and 1829. By
Rev. R. WALSH, LL. D., M. R. I. A., Author of "Á Journey from Constantinople,' &c. &c. &c. Boston, 1831. 2 vols. 12mo. pp. 290 and 299.
To one who is acquainted with the history of South America, the very name of Brazil possesses a romantic charm. It carries him back to those early days when that vast region was inhabited only by hordes of wandering savages. It reminds him of the deep feelings of astonishment with which its shores were first surveyed by European eyes; of the spirit of adventure, the courage, the endurance, and the perseverance which animated the early adventurers who explored it; of their dreams of gold and their tales of wonder, of giants and pigmies, Amazons and anthropophagi. It calls up to his recollection the worse than savage cruelties which were perpetrated upon its native inhabitants; the slavery, more cruel than death, to which they were subjected ; and the untiring exertions of the Jesuits to protect these persecuted tribes, and to bestow on them the blessings of civilization and Christianity.
Nor is it merely on account of the past that Brazil is interesting. The country in its present situation possesses stronger and more direct claims on our attention. No one can cast even a hasty glance on the map of this continent without being struck with the vast extent of the Brazilian territory, embracing, as it does, two fifths of South America, and larger, it is said, than the whole of Europe. In richness and variety of natural productions it is perhaps exceeded by no country in the world. It is, in truth, what its historian* has called it," the finest region of the whole habitable globe.” Its plains, its rivers, its mountains, and its forests are prodigal in animal and vegetable life. Diamonds and gold, and the no less valuable mineral iron, are found beneath its soil in boundless profusion; and yet the nature and extent of its mineral resources are very imperfectly known. length of sea-coast, with its convenient harbours, give it great advantages for foreign commerce; while its numerous rivers apparently offer every facility for intercourse between the coast and the interior. The climate is in most parts healthy and agreeable. It is sufficiently obvious, that this country with which our commercial intercourse is rapidly increasing, and which already produces some of the staples of our states in great abundance, may hereafter become a valuable friend in some branches of trade, and a formidable rival in others. If the inhabitants of Brazil should ever become a moral, cultivated, and enterprising people, subject to a good government and good laws, they would soon be one of the most flourishing and powerful nations which the world has ever known.
Dr. Walsh, we think, has performed a valuable service in
the information which he has given concerning Brazil. He is already known to the reading public by his - Journey from Constantinople,” in which he gives an account of some countries which have not often been traversed by intelligent travellers. That work has been extremely popular, both in Great Britain * and this country; and we think the present is likely to become so. Dr. Walsh seems to enjoy all those dispositions and powers of mind and body which fit a man for a traveller. He appears to be always in good health and spirits, and to possess strength to endure every fatigue which his curiosity prompts him to undergo. His mind is active and inquisitive; while his cheerfulness and sociability enable him to obtain freely that information which would be withheld from a traveller of a different temperament. He is a close observer of the manners and habits of the people among whom he travels, yet always judges them with candor and kindness. He has a keen relish for the beauties of nature and art, and describes them with judgment and spirit. In every thing which he presents to the reader, whether it be descriptions of natural scenery, accounts of his personal adventures, or sketches of the modes of life of the inhabitants of the country, he possesses the rare talent of giving an exact representation of the impression made upon his own mind by the objects which attract his attention. This talent spreads a constant glow of life and spirit over his pages. Besides, his kind and benevolent feelings, which show themselves in every part of the work, in the most unaffected manner, render his volumes highly attractive. His speculations do not exhibit him merely as a cold political economist, but as an ardent and sincere Christian, who feels a strong interest in the welfare of his fellow creatures. The work throughout maintains a moral tone of sentiment, which is the more gratifying when contrasted with the disregard of all moral distinctions which pervades too many books of travels.
Dr. Walsh gives us sufficient of his personal adventures to preserve his reader's interest in him, and maintain the unity of the work, which a book of travels is too apt to lose when it becomes a mere series of unconnected disquisitions on different subjects. He is careful, however, on the other hand, not to disgust us by dwelling on petty circumstances which
* A fourth edition of this work has lately been published in London.