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in our old version, which remained in use
in its original state, until it was revised,
and very much corrected foon after the
restoration of Charles the fecond. In its
present form, . i.

3. It is as good as most others, and
has been and may be used with very
great profit. The compilers seem to have
had a scrupulous regard for the words of
feripture, and to thefe they adhered closely
and strictly, so much as to prefer the
sense to the versification. I grant, this
is not always smooth. It is only here
and there brilliant. But what is a thou-
fand times more valuable, it is generally
the sentiment of the holy Spirit. And
this should silence every objection-It
bas tbe stamp of divine authority. More.
over this version comes nearer the sense
of the original, than any I have yet feen,
except the Scotch, which I have now and
then taken 'the liberty to make use of,
when it appeared to me better expressed,
than the English. You may, if you please,
find fault with the manner of ekeing out
a verse for the sake of the rhyme, but
what of that? Here is every thing great
and noble, yea divine,, although not in
modern stile or dress: For

4. Here is Chrift--His glory is treated of, his praises are sung. He exalts the compositions and ennobles the verse :


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Especially if we consider the author of those hymns. They come to us from the inspiration of the Spirit of wisdom; all whose words and works are truly divine. What he has revealed concerning the person of Immanuel, and concerning his praises to be sung in the church, are indeed the word of God. His person is the wonder of heaven, as well as of earth: His praises are beyond the reach of angels and saints. O with what reverence fhould we read of his matchless glory.! with what thankfulness should we sing of his: infinite goodness to the children of men! And we shall endeavor to read and sing 'with growing faith and increasing love, if we consider .-5. That our very translation has been sung for two hundred years by as great and as good men, as ever lived, under the influence of the holy Spirit. He has made the singing of psalms what the scripture promises it fhould be. He has rendered it the means of keeping up lively communion with the Father and the Son. He has put grace into the heart; and there has been sweet melody unto the Lord. He has bestowed joy in believing, and has increased it in singing. He has revealed the loveliness of Jesus to the foul, and has inflamed the affections with gratitude to him, while his loveliness was


celebrated in a pfalm. of praise. This he has promised to do, and he does it. He has living witnesses of his faithfulness to his word. Singing has still every blessing in the church which it ever had. It glorifies God, edifies believers, and keeps up holy and ardent desires in the heart after Jesus. Since these are the happy effects of singing psalms, even in our prefent version, why lould any one wish for another, if all the good that can come by finging be received by this ? '.11 il

But you are offended at the style: You think, it might be tolerable two centuries ago, but now it is very, very bad, and Dr. Watts must mend it. Examine your heart carefully, and perhaps you may see, that you are led by a very false taste. For the scripture wants no mending; nay it is always worse for our mending. It is plain in majesty. God has not written it to please the imagination, but to convert the heart, and to comfort and to edify the foul; therefore the inspired writers have used great plainness of speech. They disclaim all painted language and oratorical colouring. One of them speaking for the rest fays. We have received not the " spirit of the world, but the Spirit which “ is of God, that we might know the " things which are freely given to us of « God; which things also we speak, not " in the words which man's wisdom “ teacheth, but which the holy Ghost “ teacheth.” To his words the understanding should bow, and with reverence receive them: Because they are his. Curiosity should be dumb. It should make no enquiry : “ Are they fine words, poeti“ cal, dreft up with flowers and metaphors, “ brilliant as Cowley, smooth as Pope." No, they are not; but they are revealed to make the man of God wise unto falvacion, and they do. As such, the finest poetry of man is no more to be compared with them, than man is to be compared with God. His word is the great instrument of salvation. It is the ordinance of God for every saving purpose. He works in it and by it, and therefore it is plain and simple, that the glory may not be given to the means themselves, but to his almighty grace, which makes them effectual. How unlikely is the word preached so to change a finner's heart, that he fhall be as much a new creature, as if & devil was made an angel; and yet this effect is daily produced, and by plain preaching too. Thus the most successful preacher that ever was, declares" My to speech and my preaching was not with 66 enticing words of man's wisdom, but

thall be as made an anged, and by

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full blet, that is man

*** in demonstration of the Spirit and of * “ power; that your faith should not stand

" in the wisdom of man, but in the power " of God." And his power is promised, and is also experienced to this very day in the use of the means of grace. · God does give his blefling to them. What more simple than the facraments ? Yet through Christ working mightily in them, they do answer the end of their institution? What

fo unlikely as prayer to obtain all needi ful blessings ? and yet it is certain matter

of fact, that the effectual fervent prayer:
of a righteous man availeth much. So
the pfalms, not trimmed up with human
embellishments, but in the simple dress.
of scripture, do communicate holy joy in
the Lord. He blesses the means, because
they are his own means, and when used
in faith, he never fails to render them
effectual. Here then let us look, not at
fine words, but at God's word. Let us
not be offended at its fimplicity : For it
is purposely fo. It is written for profit,
and not for amusement. As an instru..
ment, it has not the virtue in itself, that
the excellency of the power exerted by it
may be of God. He would have all the
glory. Our own joy in singing and, our
neighbor's edification, shall nor arise from
fine poetry, but from his effectual grace.


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