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ANECDOTE OF THE REV. JAMES ARMSTRONG.
Some months ago the Rev. Mr. Armstrong preached at Harmony, near the Wabash, when a doctor of that place, a professed Deist or Infidel, called on his associates to accompany him, while he "attacked the Methodist," as he said. At first he asked Mr. Armstrong if he 'followed preaching to save souls ?" he answered in the affirmative. He then asked Mr. Armstrong if he ever saw a soul? No. If he ever heard a soul?' No.' If he ever tasted a soul?' 'No.' If he ever smelt a soul? No. If he ever felt a soul ??—Yes, thank God, said Mr. Armstrong. Well,' said the doctor, 'there are four of the five senses against one, to evidence that there is no soul.' Mr. Armstrong then asked the gentleman if he was not a doctor of medicine? and was answered in the affirmative. He then asked the doctor, if he ever saw a pain ?' 'No.' If he ever heard a pain ?' 'No.' If he ever tasted a pain ?' 'No.' 'If he ever smelt a pain ?' 'No.' If he ever felt a pain? Yes. Mr. Armstrong then said, 'there are also four senses against one, to evidence that there is no pain, and yet, sir, you know there is a pain, and I know there is a soul. The doctor appeared confounded and walked off.—Indiana Gazette.
For the Repository.
A FATHER'S ADVICE TO A DAUGHTER, WRITTEN IN HER ALBUM.
You ask me, dear, to dedicate this book,
And will you on these lines with fondness look,
She who with fondest care your cradle rock'd,,
Her sweet advice, and counsel gave to you
And when you feel heaven's blessings on you flow,
In friendship be sincere, and always true,
Be to your friends what you'd have them to you.
WOODSTOCK, FEBRUARY, 1827.
SERMON, NO. XXXIII.
[The necessity and value of the christian doctrine of human immortality. A discourse delivered in Camden, May 7, 1826, being the Sabbath next after the interment of the late Hon. Jonas Wheeler, President of the Senate of Maine. By Wm. Allen Drew.]
JOHN XI. 23.-"Thy brother shall rise again."
These words occurred in the course of a highly interesting conversation which was held between him, who was "the Resurrection and the Life," and certain bereaved friends, that had a few days before committed to its grave the body of a departed brother. He was one, probably, on whom, under God, these affectionate sisters had chiefly depended for temporal support and protection, and whose manly friendship they faithfully repaid with delicate offices of female love. The strong ties of consanguinity, and the stronger ones of sincere affection bound them so closely together, that, like the ivy which is entwined around the venerable oak when, by some rude blast it is upturned, it was natural, nay, it was inevitable that, when those ties were rent, their tender hearts should bleed; and bleeding, require the aid of a physician more than mortal.
In this situation, Jesus, the divine Son of "the God of all consolation," approached them with "the balm of Gilead," to pour into their wounded and aching bosoms "the oil of joy," to "bind up their broken hearts," and to comfort them with the gracious "words of life and peace." And how did this "Teacher sent from God," —this spiritual Physician,-seek to effect the benevolent object of his errand ?-Did he speak to them of earthly things? Alas! All these, they knew, were as Vol. VII.
transitory, as they had found that departed object of their affections to be, over whom, as they had just seen, "the wind had passed, and he was gone." Did he present them with a view of dark annihilation, which, while it terminates all the evils, destroys also all the joys of human existence ? No, my brethren. You behold these disconsolate mourners waiting, in tears, for consolations more needful, more valuable, more just than the above. You also behold him, who "spake as never man spake," about to apply that powerful remedy, which is effectual for every wounded spirit, giving utterance to the important declaration, which at this time has been selected as our text; "THY BROTHER SHALL RISE AGAIN !"
The christian doctrine of the resurrection of all the human dead, is that which the author of our holy religion recommended as the most certain, indeed as the only thing that can support human nature, under the various ills which it is called to endure. By this, "life and immortality are brought to light," "glory" and incorruptibility are presented to our view beyond the "dark shadows of the valley of death."
Let us then, on the present occasion,-an occasion which invites us to such a course,-make this doctrine the subject of our serious meditation: ascertain in what its value consists, and how it may be turned to the important purposes it was designed to promote.
In order to show the value of this doctrine, it is proper to consider, what the condition of the human mind must be without it.
Without the hope of a future existence, despair must brood in fearful terrors over every ardent desire and generous wish of the soul; and a consequent distrust of the goodness and rectitude of that awful Being by whose pleasure we now exist, must destroy, perhaps,
all love towards, and trust in Him;-sentiments, that are known to be as necessary to constitute the Christian, as they are to promote the important purposes of resignation and duty.
There are few things in this life, which we can believe without doubt;-there are fewer, which we can know. Among the latter, man knows that he exists; he knows also that he must die. He beholds in himself a noble, a wonderful being, the mysteries of whose existence he cannot solve-a being, however, which seems to be worthy a higher destination than awaits him in this turbulent and mutable world. The instinctive inquiry has always agitated every human bosom, demanding an answer to the solemn and interesting question ;—whether man's existence is to terminate forever with the dissolution of his body? He feels a secret dread of annihilation, and a kind of hope in a future life; but, without the revelations of christianity, nothing satisfactory comes to quiet that dread, or to confirm that hope. Reason and philosophy, amidst all their discoveries, acknowledge a barrier in the grave they never were able to pass. All beyond that, is as impenetrable as the tenfold darkness of oblivion. The lessons of experience cannot be heard here, since it has ever remained "that undiscovered country, from whose bourne no traveller has e'er returned" to communicate the intelligence so much desired and sought, and needed by the living.
Search the records of human history-inquire of Socrates, Plato and Aristotle; and you will have an answer that gives indubitable evidence of the necessity and inestimable value of the doctrine of human immortality. They will tell you of how much importance they would consider the discovery of such a welcome truth, by informing you with what anxiety they had endeavored to