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church, on which the Christians should all be laid. This bedstead was just three feet in the casement on the exactest French scales. Every Christian, in those days, was laid on this bedstead; if less than the standard, the wheel and the rope were applied to him to stretch him to it; if he was too tall, the knife was applied to his extremities. In this way they kept the good Christians for nearly a thousand years, all of one stature. Those to whom the knife or the wheel were applied, either died in the preparation, or were brought to the saving stan

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One sturdy fellow, called Martin Luther, was born in those days, who grew to the enormous height of four feet he of course feared the bedstead and knife, and kept off at a considerable distance deliberating how he might escape. At length he proclaimed that there was a great mistake committed by his ancestors in fixing upon three feet as the proper standard of the stature of a good Christian. He made proselytes to opinions, for many who had been tried on the three foot bedstead, who were actually four feet, had found a way of contracting themselves to the popular standard. These began to stretch themselves to their natural stature, and Luther had, in a few years, an iron bedstead four feet long, fashioned and fixed in his churches, with the usual appendages. The wheel and the knife soon found something to do in Luther's church; and it became as irksome to flesh and blood to be stretched by a wheel and rope to four feet, or to be cut down to that stature, as it was to be forced either up or down to the good and sacred three feet stature. Moreover, men grew much larger after Luther's time than before, and a considerable proportion of them advanced above his perfect man ; insomuch that John Calvin found it expedient to order his iron bedstead to be made six inches longer, with

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this young man returned early to his father's house on that day, and by his presence increased the happiness of the domestic circle. Speaking to this acquaintance afterward, that I was surprised to see him so associated, and his vigilance over and attention to that young man on that occasion, he replied, You know his failings-how he might have exposed himself, how he would have wounded his friends, and wrung with anguish the heart of his father-should I not have denied myself for his sake? Is there no one who would do this for me, if I was in like manner in danger?

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This answer satisfied me that the man acted from that exalted principle of Christianity, which bids us to do to others as we would they should do unto us. The man was a Universalist, which must be matter of surprise to some, who think themselves better than other men, but not to those who estimate character according to the general tenor of a man's conduct, and his deeds according to what they may be enabled to understand of the purity of his motives. It is likewise plain, that in the great and last day, when all shall receive according to their deeds, that this act of self-denial, this labor of love, will not be forgotten,, tho even in time the recipient himself may not have known how great a favor had been bestowed.

INFORMANT.

IRON BEDSTEAD.

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"In the days of Abecedarian Popes, it was decreed that a good Christian just measured three feet, and for the peace and happiness of the church it was ordained that an iron bedstead, with a wheel at one end and a knife at the other, should be placed at the threshold of the

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determined Calvinists will no longer hear him preach the word of life, nor will they permit him to hold a seat at the communion table. They also cease to pray for him, and treat him as tho he had committed the sin unto death. Now the writer

of

such

a

course,

pursued

by

any

these lines believes that denomination, would end in their ruin; therefore, he would exhort his brethren never to conduct in this uncharitable ‹ manner, and if they have, to confess their sins, and immediately to retract their course.

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For the Repository.

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GENUINE BENEVOLENCE.

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Mr. Editor,-Instances of genuine benevolence ought to be recorded for the encouragement and imitation of others. The following in its reality passed within the compass of my own observation. A young man, whose talents and acquirements made him, the hope of his family, had unfortunately associated with those, who tho not of the lowest class, feared, not to approach to the gaming table, or to pass in their bilarity the flowing bowl. He had acquired a love for that delicious poison, which slays its thousands, and at times had been overtaken in this fault. His parents' hearts had oftener bled, had it not been generally concealed from them, and that partiality and parental fondness obscured their vision. He was present on a public occasion, when the temptation must have assailed him in a most potent form, and in all human probability he must have fallen under it. An acquaintance of his saw his danger, and resolved to use his utmost exertions to preserve him from it. His eye was constantly upon him through the day-he withdrew him from some of his former associates-he engaged him in pleasant and useful conversation, and by his example prevented

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had been occasioned, or to strengthen the hands of a minister, whose hand was against his; that he had never consented to any covenant which could make him liable to be cast out and treated as a heathen man and a publican, and this by an act of four persons who could not be supposed to be without prejudice or partiality. He then proceeds to say, that as less than one third of the male members of the church took, in the outset, new ground, and in calling a council, and being, by that body acknowledged a church, could have acted only for themselves, he could see no cause why any measures coercive or admonitory should be used against him.

He then concludes by saying, was it not enough that the majority of which he had been pastor should give up their rights (as they did,) that they should subject themselves to many privations in hope of peace, that they should have waited long in hope of enjoying again christian privileges with their former brethren; but must they suffer this further trial, indignity to be by a minority of a minority, counted as delinquents, and to have their former pastor and all those brethren who are bound to him by similarity of religious principle, and by profession and affection, declared to be outcasts from christian society! Can it be that they who would subject us all to the situation of heathen men and publicans, believe that in this they are doing God service?

CONGREGATIONALIST.

NOTE.

That the same leaven pervades the Calvinistic churches in many places, producing the same trouble as it does in Salisbury, is evident, if the news of the day is to be believed. In many instances, their love cools toward their minister whom they once loved and honored, merely because that he in some things differs with his brethren about the extent of charity and good feelings which should be shown to other and different denominations from his own. If the minister is in

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the usual regulating appendages. The next generation found even Calvin's measure as unaccommodating as Luther's, and the Independents, in their greater wisdom and humanity, fixed their perfect Christian at the enormous stature of five feet.-The Baptists at this time began to think of constructing an iron bedstead to be in fashion with their neighbors, but kindly made it six inches longer than the Congregationalists, and dispensed with the knife, thinking that there was likely to be more need for two wheels than one knife, which they accordingly affixed to their apparatus. It was always found that in the same proportion as the standard lengthened, Christians grew; and now the bedstead is actually proved to be at least six inches too short. It is now expected that six inches will be humanely added; but this will be only following a bad precedent; for experience has proved, that as soon as the iron bedstead is length ened, the people will grow apace, and it will be found too short, even when extended to six feet. Why not, then, dispense with this piece of popish furniture in the church, and allow Christians of every stature to meet at the same fireside, and eat at the same table? The parable is just, and the interpretation thereof easy and sure.

Every attempt at reformation since the rude but masculine efforts of Luther, has been predicated upon the same principles. He did not like the popish superstructure, notwithstanding he built upon the same foundation. So did all his successors. They all divided the New Testament into two Chapters. The title of the one was THE ESSENTIALS—and the title of the other was THE NON-ESSENTIALS. In one party the one chapter, and in another party, the other, is much the larger. Still the volume comprizes but two chapters, however disproportioned they may be. Many efforts have been made to reduce the chapter of Essen

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