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eminent usefulness. His natural tal- commenced in the Presbyterian ents were excellent, his acquired church. During the revolutionary knowledge was truly respectable, his war he was a chaplain in the army, disposition amiable. He appeared and ever since has been a true friend at first view to be reserved and rather to his country. A few years after austere ; but a farther acquaintance the peace he connected himself with removed this impression and discover- the Reformed Dutch Church, and ed the man. He was fond of society, settled in the city of New York. Inespecially in the last of his days, and disposition finally constrained him to was well qualified to shine in it. His resign his pastoral charge. The church great excellence, however, was in the of Chrisi, and society at large, have few pulpit. Long will he be remembered
inen like him to lose. As long as health by those who have sat under his stated permitted, he devoted his talcats and ministry. He had a bappy faculty of time to the service of that cause which expressing himself in his discourses
he early espoused ; a cause which with plainness and neatness, beyond lay near to bis heart; which he loved. any one the writer of this i as ever
His complaints were considered in a heard. His eloquence, with a few great measure as ideal by his numerous exceptions, was natural, impressive friends ; but his death has proved the and commanding. At times, he had
contrary. It is probable he has felt too much vehemence in his manner. more than he wisheri to declare. He His subjects were generally practical. is gone ; we shall see him no more ; He exulted the Saviour and directed
hear him no more on this side of sinners to his Cross as their only ref- eternity His memory, however, uge. le stemed to feel the im.
will be ever dear to all who were portance of his work, and dealt favoured with his friendship, as well as faithfully with the souls of his hear- to those who were allied to him by the
His exhortations were earuest, ties of nature. One who knew him pathetic, persuasive and alarming. well, and has long been an intimate in He was peculiarly fitted for convincing his family, pays this feeble but sinthe sinner, and urging him to fice cere tribute of respect and affection is to Christ. His ministerial career he his merits.
ORDAINED October 14th, 1807, at At Lexington, Jan. 30, 1808, Rer. Dartmouth, Rev. Daniel Emerson. Mr. Avery Williams. Introductory Introductory prayer by Rev. Oliver prayer by the Rev. Mr. Gile, of Mil
. Cobb, Rochester ; sermon by Rev. ton; sermon by Rev. Dr. Kendal of Eli Smith, Holles, N. H.; consecrat. Weston ; consecrating prayer by ing prayer by Rev. Mase Shepard, Rev. Mr. Marrett of Burlington ; Little Compton ; charge by Rev. charge by Rev. Dr. Cushing of WalCurtis Coe, Missionary from M. M. tham ; right hand by Rev. Mr. Fiske S. ; fellowship of churches by Rev. of West-Cambridge ; and conclud. Isaiah Weston, Fair Haven ; Con- ing prayer by Rev. Mr. Stearns of cluding prayer by Rev. Caleb J. Ten. Lincoln. ny, Newport.
Our Correspondent on the subject of a General Association shall be heard in our next. Also others, whose communications are received and approved, as fast as our pages will admit. Irrata.-In No. 8, for Jan. page 357, line 19 from top, second column, for
threatened read treated.
SKETCH OF THE LIFE AND CHARACTER OF JOHN CALVIN,
Taken from the Religious Monitor, with the addition of several extracts of a
communication received from a learned and ingenious Correspondent.
Concluded from page 390.
Castalio renewed his con- termined to reveal his discovetroversy in 1552 ; but became ries to the world. These he afterwards so conscious of his published at Vienne in 1553, errors, and of the injuries which in a volume, entitled, The Restihe had done to Calvin, that when tution of Christianity, in which on his death-bed, he declared the knowledge of God, of the that he could not die in peace if Christian faith, of justification, rehe did not receive his forgiveness. generation, baptism, and the eatCalvin quickly removed this ing of the Lord's supper, are perground of uneasiness, and sooth- fectly restored. So unscriptural ed his mind with the voice of were the sentiments which it friendship, and the consolations contained, that it was reprobated of the gospel.
even by the Papists, who felt so We have mentioned, that so indignant, as to condemn him to early as 1531, or 1532, Michael be burnt for heresy. He escapServede, or Servetus, began to ed, however, from Vienne, the speculate on the doctrine of the place of his condemnation and Trinity, and undisguisedly to op- subsequent imprisonment; but pose the orthodox faith. He the magistrates and clergy exewas a Spanish physician, but left cuted the sentence on his effigy, his native country, and settled at and along with it, committed his Vienne in France, where he ac- writings to the flames. Intendquired great reputation by his ing to retire to Naples, he travelprofessional knowledge and suc- led by the way of Geneva, where cess. But when he applied him, he was apprehended and imself to theology, the ardour of prisoned. After a trial, protracthis fancy seduced him into the ed by various causes, a sentence dangerous path of error ; and in similar to that from which he the fulness of his zeal, he de- had so lately escaped, was pass: Vol. III. No. 10.
ed on him, in consequence of with whom he had no secrets, he which, he was burnt alive for his says, that if Servetus came to heretical opinions.
Geneva, he would undoubtedly This tragical history has open- * lose his life. This he concluded ed the mouths of many, parti- from his knowledge of the concularly among the ancient So- stitution of the state, and the cinians and the modern Unita- general opinion of the times rians, against Calvin, whom they concerning heresy. On this accuse of being the principal a- part of the accusation let us hear gent in the whole transaction. his own reasoning :“ It is affirmIt has been repeatedly affirmed, ed that I was the cause of Servethat to gratify a long concealed tus' being apprehended at Vienand inveterate enmity against Whence, then, this sudden Servetus, he denounced him to and powerful intimacy with the the magistracy of Vienne, as a satellites of the Pope? Is it crediheretic, and caused him to be ble that there should be such an apprehended immediately
intercourse between those, who his arrival at Geneva. It is not are not less opposed to each othour intention to justify the con- er, than Christ is to Belial ? duct of Calvin in this business ; Four years have elapsed since but the following remarks may Servetus spread a similar report have the effect at least of so far at Venice : whether this was the exculpating him, as to prove, effect of hatred, or whether he that he was actuated by no pri- had been deceived by others, I vate personal motive of malice
know not. I only ask, if he was or cruelty; and that his behav. betrayed by my information, how iour throughout can be easily was he permitted to live quiet and justified on the principles which unmolested, for the space of were at that time commonly re- three years in the very midst of ceived by the mildest, the wis- his enemies? They must allow, est and the best of men, though either that his pretended crime to us they now justly appear was a falsehood which I inventequally inhuman, unreasonable, ed; or that this holy martyr and unchristian.
was in greater favour with the Bolsec, though the author of a Papists, than to be injured by life of Calvin, in which every any accusation of mine." charge that malice could devise, But it is farther said, that Cal. or falsehood propagate, is re- vin, informed thar Servetus had corded ; and- Mainbourg, cele escaped from prison at Vienne, brated for partiality and misrep- made him be seized immediately resentation, never so much as on his arrival at Geneva. This insinuate, that Calvin and Serve- assertion is not supported by tus had a mutual hatred of each facts :
: for Servetus must have other; but on the contrary, ac-' left Vienne before the 17th of cuse the latter only, of insolence
June, that being the day fixed for and pride. That the magistracy his death ; yet lie was not apof Vienne were not instigated by Calvin to persecute Servetus,
Tract. cui titul. An Christianis inay be satisfactorily proved. judicibus hereticvs punire liceaz-Oper In a letter to Farel and Viret, tom. viii. p. 5. 7.
prehended at Geneva till Augustly express the atrocity of such 13th. It is thus more than impieties, and exhort our senate probable, that he was five or six to severity; those of Schaffhausweeks, at least, at Geneva, as his en are of the same opinion. The safety was every moment en- letter from the ministers of Bern dangered while he remained is confirmed by another from within reach of Popish violence. the senate, a circumstance which He besides declined returning to greatly encourages our council. Vienne, when the Council de- He
condemned without manded him, preferring the hesitation or controversy. Tochance of a more lenient sentence morrow he will be brought to from the reformed church. But punishment. We have attemptthe principles of toleration were ed to get the manner of his death then unknown; even the Prot- altered, but in vain,” * This estants retained a portion of the letter, though written in the full persecuting spirit of Rome ; and confidence of friendship, conthe constitution of Geneva, in tains no appearance either of particular, not only permitted, enmity against Servetus, or of but required the punishment of joy at his condemnation ; but a heretics. So closely connected simple statement of facts, which were the civil and ecclesiastical prove, that the right of punishlaws, that sedition and heresy ing heretics with death was the were convertible terms at Gene- common sentimentofChristians: va. In 1536, accordingly, all who and instead of being marked by. did not submit to the discipline expressions of cruelty, it rather of the church, were subjected to gives a favourable view of Calcivil excommunication, being de, vin's mildness. In another letprived of their rights of citizen- ter, this feature is still more apship. In 1558, also, Gentilis parent. Convinced of the juste escaped death, only by a recanta- ness of the accusations brought tion of his errors.
against Servelus, he saw that the The sentence denounced a law of the state could not be gainst Servetus, was not the ef- suspended, yet wished the pune, fect of momentary heat among ishment annexed to his crime by the people, or of personal enmi- the law, to be mitigated.f ty in Calvin, but the result of
“ The intolerance, therefore, solemn deliberation, and of the of the age, not the cruelty of unanimous advice of the reform- Calvin, (says Sennebier, whose ed churches. In a letter to Far- apology for this reformer merits el, Calvin writes 'thus : “ The the fuller credit from their being messenger has returned from the Swiss.-They declare with one
Calvini Epistol. p. 72. col. 1. consent, that Servetus has re
oper. tom. ix.-The letters from the newed those impious errors with churches of Bazil and Schaffhausen, which Satan formerly disturbed and from the ministers and senate of the church, and that he is a Bern, are in the same collection, p. monster not to be endured. The 72–74. people of Basil are cordial in the cium: penæ vero atrocitatem remitti
† Spero capitale saltem fore judi. matier ; those of Zurich are the cupio. Calv. Epist. p. 70. col. 1. oper. most vehement, for they strong- tom. ix.
of very different theological city. Let us remember, that sentiments) dictated the sen- Calvin, and all the magistrates tence, October 27, that Servetus of Geneva, in the year 1553, should be burnt alive. Castalio were born and bred up in the alone had the courage to write a church of Rome. This is the dissertation against the punish- best apology that can be made ment of heretics, which, though for them.”+ he was at Basil, he thought it After this period, Calvin's life necessary for his own safety to was comparatively quiet and publish under the feigned name peaceful. The disputes concernof Bellius. But Servetus per- ing discipline were sometimes insisted to defend his opinions in deed revived, and the senate for blasphemous language : the laws a season took the power of exof the times could not be viola- communication into their own ted; and, therefore, the endeav- hands, but tranquillity was soon ours of some to satisfy them again restored. The number of selves with his banishment, and strangers gradually increased in of Calvin to render his punish- Geneva, and the English who ment less cruel, had no effect. took refuge there, from the per: It is certain, Calvin deplored secution of Queen Mary, were Servetus' fate ; and the disputes allowed to found a church, with in prison were managed with their own liturgy and ecclesiastimuch greater moderation on his cal goverment, as the Italians side, than on that of the pannel. had done in 1551 : but when Calvin's situation was peculiarly Elizabeth ascended the throne, delicate ; Roman Catholics accus- and revived the Protestant reed him of dangerous theologi- ligion, they thanked the magiscal errors. Their eyes were trates for their protection, and fixed upon him ; and had he re- returned to their own country. mained an indifferent spectator In 1556 Calvin was seized of the process against Servelus, with a quartan ague, which gave they would have pronounced him a shock to his constitution, ala favourer of his opinions. Add ready debilitated and worn out to this, had Servetus escaped, his with his incessant labours, anxie. gross and abusive charges against ty, and study, from the effects of Calvin would have appeared well- which he never wholly recoverfounded ; and Calvin's adversa- ed: but the flame of life was not ries would have availed them- yet extinguished,its ardour again selves of that advantage, for ruin- revived, and he lived to publish ing his influence." To con. his commentary on Isaiah, and clude,“ if the Roman Catholics the last edition of his Institutions had never put any person to in French and Latin ; and to death for the sake of religion, prepare for the press his annotaServetus had never been con- tions on the five books of Moses, demned to die in any Protestant containing his ingenious harmo• Sennebier's Hist. Liter. de Gene. ny of the law. After several
years of declining health, during ve, quoted and abridged by Dr. Er. skine. Sketches of Ch. Hist. Vol. II. No. xi, in which article the substance + Memoirs of Literature, Vol. 1. p. of the above vindication is to be found. 138.