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ark of God, during the journeyings and perils of the church, are responsible for the sacred deposit. Let us not be ashamed of our religion; nor conceal, nor mutilate it, from complaisance to the world. We may preach a gospel of our own which will please men. But if we preach the old-fashioned Christianity, which Jesus preached, and as plainly as he did, depend upon it, the unsanctified heart will rise in opposition. And yet, (though it is a standing paradox to unbelief,) this is the very preaching that is to be the instrument of enlisting the world under the banner of the cross. In all our intercourse with men, let us remember that our Master was crucified for the cause of truth; that the ministry which disguises his truth, he will not bless ; and that they who shun the labors and trials of his service here, will lose its honors and rewards in heaven.
Finally brethren, on this day of humiliation, while we mourn over our sins, and the sins of our fellow Christians, which mar the beauty, and retard the triumphs of the church ; it is a precious consolation that we may commit all these interests to God, in whose hands they are safe. He can, and he will take care of this cause, in spite of our imperfection. The same Bible that warns us of our dangers, encourages our hopes. Yes, the church will survive these struggles and conflicts. The day is approaching when mountains will become plains before the chariot of our
Redeemer ; the battle will cease to rage, and the trump of victory will proclaim; “ The kingdoms of this world are become the kingdom of our Lord, and of his Christ.” Fly swiftly, the intervening years. Break, illustrious morning, on the world. “Even so, come, Lord Jesus !".....AMEN.
DELIVERED AT THE DEDICATION
NEW CONGREGATIONAL CHURCH
AUGUST 1, 1827.
BY DAVID L. OGDEN,
PASTOR OF THE CHURCH IN SOUTHINGTON,
PRINTED BY HEZEKIAH HOWE.
Psalm lxxxix. 7.—God is greatly to be feared in the assembly of the
saints, and to be had in reverence of all them that are about him.
CHRISTIANITY is a social religion. Though its enjoy. ments are found in solitude; yet they spring from the influence which the assembly of the saints exerts. They who compose this assembly make a special approach to God. This truth the text affirms, according to the well known law of Hebrew poetry, called Parallelism. In the kind of parallelism which the text exemplifies, the latter clause of the verse answers literally and exactly to the former. “God is greatly to be feared in the assembly of the saints," is a proposition of the same meaning exactly as the one which affirms that he is “to be had in reverence of all them that are about him.” The former proposition is perfectly easy to comprehend, and must mean that God is to be feared in the public congregation of his people ; and the latter, therefore, distinctly identifies that body with “ them that are about him," or in other words, "them that are near him."
Good men are always mentioned in the scriptures, not merely as worshipping God separately, but as associating themselves together for that service. In the first periods of the church, the father of a family was the minister of religion for his own household; and this was an assembly of the saints. Afterwards, when the world became corrupt, and there was likely to be an entire forgetfulness of the true God, Abraham was chosen to perpetuate the knowledge of him through all generations. In his family, by the institution of a covenant with an appropriate sign, the patriarchal church was continued to the time of Moses. Another dispensation then arose, in which the worship of the true God was conducted in larger assemblies. The whole congregation of the people