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FOR THE YEAR 1827,
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IN looking over the Numbers of our present volume, we perceive, amidst a variety of articles not reducible to any particular class of topics, several important subjects which have recurred with considerable prominence, and to which we may briefly advert as in some measure a key to the contents of the volume.
In our Review Department, a very large space has been devoted to notices of works on ecclesiastical history, and particularly to the rise, the progress, the excellencies, the deficiencies, and the results of the Protestant Reformation. Mr. Scott opened the way for our discussion of these topics, in reference to Germany ; Bishop Kaye led us back to the early annals of the church ; Mr. Soames brought us homeward to the days of our own Edward the Sixth ; Dr. M‘Crie and M. Llorente exbibited to us similar struggles, though soon overpowed by the iron hand of dominant Popery, in the very fastnesses of Italy and Spain; while the memorialists of Arminius and Bishop Hall unveiled to us mournful scenes of very much the same moral aspect in the bosom of Protestant Holland and England itself. To offer to our readers the reflections which force themselves on our thoughts from the retrospect of these varied scenes, would be to re-write the articles to which we allude. If they will study these monitory topics as they deserve, they will find them fraught with instruction; they will discover much of the weakness and frailty of mankind even at his best estate; they will perceive the unspeakable evils which result from the introduction of self-will, and party spirit, into religious discussions; they will learn to dread and deprecate the unhallowed blending of political intrigues, and of all merely secular interests and prejudices, with the pure and spiritual doctrines and ritual of a Christian church; they will perceive the duty of lively gratitude to God for the religious privileges so largely bestowed upon our own nation in the present age, and for the establishment among us of a church founded upon scriptural and apostolical principles; while they will learn the necessity of a constant recurrence to the Bible itself as the only fountain of spiritual illumination, and of a clependance upon the guidance of the Holy Spirit of God to lead us into a knowledge of all things necessary for our salvation.
Turning from our Review Department to the contributions of our respected correspondents, we perceive that their attention has been strongly directed to two subjects, the bearings of unfulfilled Prophecy, with es