Page images


W. on "MYSTERIES," is received, and shall appear in the next num. ber. The Editors hope frequently to hear from the ingenious author. R. on Isaiah Ixiii. 9. with annexed "Remarks from a M.S. by the late Dr. BELLAMY," are approved, and on file for early publication.

A second Letter from "CONSTANS," also a continuation of the "Biographical Memoirs of the late Dr. Tappan, will enrich the next number of the PANOPLIST. We invite the particular attention of our youthful readers, to these excellent productions.

We hope constantly to delight and improve our readers, with communications from the mellifluent LA TRAPPE.

N. will accept our thanks for his candid Review of COOPER's sermon, on Predestination. He will oblige us by frequently employing his pen in reviewing for the PANOPLIST the publications of the day.

A "Sketch of the character of the beloved Dr. TAPPAN, being part of a discourse delivered soon after his decease, but not published," is received. The author will perceive his subject anticipated by another hand; yet as this paper " contains some particulars not generally known," and especially as it exhibits a portrait of that amiable and excellent man, drawn by an intimate friend, and to the life, it shall be inserted in the Panoplist. In the above sketch, we recognize the hand of a much respected friend, with whose productions we hope often to gratify and instruct our readers.

The Review of the Life of Sir WILLIAM JONES, also of " A Scripture Catechism," &c. came too late for insertion in this number.

The request of the gentlemen, who sent us "The Principles of Eloquence, &c." shall be attended to in due season.

The researches of PHILO, strengthen an important branch of evi dence in favour of the divinity of the Holy Scriptures. He is entitled to our thanks for laboriously collecting and throwing into a form for general use, so much important information, which might otherwise have been confined to a few of the learned. With satisfaction we anticipate his future labours.

Patmos, and Paros, on topicks seasonable and useful, are on file for publication.

The Unfaithful Shepherd, before insertion, must be revised by the author, who is requested to call for it for that purpose.

Several other communications are received, and under consideration.


Rev. MICHILL BLOOD, Buckstown ;-Mr. E. GOODALE, Hallowell ;THOMAS CLARK, bookseller, Portland ;-W. & D. TREADWELL, do. Portsmouth THOMAS & WHIPPLE, do. Newburyport ;-CUSHING & APPLETON, do. Salem; EDWARD COTTON, do. Boston;-ISAIAH THOMAS, do. Worcester;-WILLIAM BUTLER, do. Northampton ;-WHITING, BACKUS & WHITING, do. Albany ;-T. & J. SwORDS, do. New York ;-WM. P. FARRAND, do. Philadelphia ;-WM. WILKINSON, do. Providence ;-ISAAC BEERS and Co. do. New Haven ;-O. D. Coox, do. Hartford ;-Mr. BENJAMIN CUMMINGS, Windsor, Ver. -Mr. LEE, Bath, Me.

No. 2.]



JULY, 1805.

DOCTOR MACLAINE was a native of Monaghan, a county of the province of Ulster, Ireland. His father, a worthy dissenting minister, dying while he was young, some relations sent him for education to the university of Glasgow. Thence he repaired in 1746, to the Hague, to be an assistant to his uncle, Mr. Milling, minister of the English church in that place, whom he succeeded in his office. He married the daughter of M. Chais, a distinguished minister of the French church, by whom he had four children, three of whom, two sons and a daughter, are now living.



The memory of this divine is well entitled to the attention of christians. He devoted near half a century to the discharge of the functions of the christian ministry, and was always regarded as an ornament and blessing to that part of Christ's flock, over which he presided. During that long peried, viz. from 1746 to 1796, he persevered steadily in the same uniform course, free from ambitious views, contented with his lot, revered and beloved by all around him. But when the French revolution had carried its ravages into Holland, he found himself compelled to abandon a situation, VOL I. No. 2.


[VOL. I.

which was peculiarly congenial to his habits and pursuits, and to dissolve those strong ties, which bound him to the circle of his friends, and especially to his flock, who viewed him as their teacher, their guardian, and their father.

In England, where he found cordial and hospitable reception, he had no opportunity of fulfilling those ministerial duties, in which he took so much delight. He was anxious, however, to employ the knowledge, which he had derived from experienee, in admonishing the inhabitants of this kingdom of their danger and their duty, and with this view he wrote, in 1797, a tract, entitled "The solemn voice of public events considered."

But it was not by his writings only, that he endeavoured to benefit his fellow creatures, but also by his example. He was distinguished by the faithful discharge of his duties, both to God and man. As a parent, a master, a neighbour, and a friend, he stood eminently high. The cheerfulness and assiduity, with which he frequented the courts of the Lord's house, and the fervour and solemnity, with which he joined in our offices of devotion, as well as the humility with which he, who was so well qualified, and had been so

long accustomed to instruct, took his place on the bench of instruction, were the subjects of general observation.

lence, pouring alms into the lap of the indigent, oil into the wounds of the sick, and consolation into the bosoms of the afflicted.

Brought up in the Presbyterian form of ecclesiastical government, if he continued to give it a preference, it was such as was exempt from the slightest tincture of bigotry. He was far from considering his own communion as infallible, or from issuing a sentence of condemnation on all others. This his enlightened mind and liberal heart equally forbad. He sincere. ly deprecated all such attempts, as tending to commute a superficial attachment to a form of godliness for the inherent, substantial power of it, and as calculated rather to ir ritate and strengthen the cause of discord, than to promote that of union and peace. He was a sincere friend to the Episcopal church, admired its services, espoused its most essential doctrines, joined in its communion, and associated with some of its highest and brightest ornaments.

Doctor Maclaine was conspicuous for his zeal in the various branches of his duty. He was deeply convinced of the truths of our holy religion, and knew how to defend them from the open and the insidious attacks of their enemies.* He laboured incessantly to dispel the mists of prejudice and error, to strengthen the upright, to comfort the feeble minded, and to bring sinners to repentance. In order to this he handled not the word of God deceitfully, or lukewarmly, but by manifestation of the truth commend ed himself to every man's conscience in the sight of God. He was unwearied in every office of benevo

His scientifick attainments were very considerable. His talents and dispositions rendered his society at once improving and engag ing. He was so courteous, affable, and communicative, that no one quitted his company, without a desire to profit by it again. We will not, however, dwell on these perishable parts of his character. In the words of Dr. Gardiner, we wish to exhibit him, as the venerable pastor, the humble and faithful christian, going out of the world as a penitent reconciled to his God, and thus having hope in his death. Penetrated with a sense of his imperfections, and confess. ing himself unworthy to appear before the tribunal of justice, if he approached with confidence the throne of mercy, he did it leaning on that cross, which is the strength of our salvation. If he presented to his sovereign Master the sacrifice of a broken and contrite spirit, it was in reliance on the promises of eternal TRUTH, that it would be accepted. Conducted by hope, he waited for his deliverance with tranquillity, and with profound re signation to the order of Providence. If languor or pain of body ever extorted from him any ardent desires, they were, that he might depart and be with Christ.

In proportion as infallible symp toms announced the approach of his dissolution, his soul, possessing the peace of God, was fortified against the terrors of death; and he more and more felt the effica cy of that faith, which he had so earnestly inculcated on others. When satisfied that the awful summons was issued, set thine

When Dr. Maclaine was situated at the Hague, he supplied the foreign department in the Review; but at length be

up all connection with that publication, as he house in order, for thou shall surely Fimself professed, on account its principles. Christian Obserger.

die; he received it by saying, "You

remember Socrates, the wisest and best of heathens, in this state, could only express a hope mingled with anxiety and doubt. But blessed be God, though a grievous sinner, in retiring to that bed from which I shall rise no more, I know whom I have believed. Death can not separate me from the love of Christ; in him to die is gain." Nothing but the most solid and intimate conviction could produce the energy and warmth with which these words were uttered. On his last bed he afforded a noble example of the christian's triumph. The divine goodness was eminently displayed toward him in exempting him from acute pains, and in preserving his intellectual powers. Of these blessings he entertained the most lively and grateful sense. He profited by them chiefly by being engaged in heavenly meditations on the nature of the change which he was about to undergo, the kind of society which he was to join, the manifestations which would be made to him of the works and ways of Providence in nature and grace, and the scenes of glory and felicity which would open to his astonished view. To the discourses of others on these subjects he listened with animation and delight, and dilated on them himself with peculiar earnestness and solemnity. But though he thus rejoiced on descrying the promised land which he was so soon to possess ; he could not look back to the wilderness, through which he had passed, with indifference, or with unconcern for the welfare of his brother pilgrims. He bewailed most pathetically the effects of those sins, which had evidently brought down divine judgments on the earth. He shuddered at the ignominious bondage and persecution, under which so great a por

tion of his fellow creatures groaned; and regretted bitterly the disorders, the feuds, and insurrections, which had disgraced his native country. Far from envying them who were to sojourn in this world long after him, he considered it as a subject of gratitude to God, that he would take him to himself in times like the present; times, which, on a general view of things, he frequently and emphatically pronounced to be awful and tremendous.

Hence a general reformation of manners, and the deliverance of his country from the dangers, which she had too justly incurred, formed a part of his prayers. Most fervently also did he implore the blessings of heaven on his relations and friends. Ejaculations of this kind, and of thankfulness for the attentions he received in his helpless state, were constantly issuing from his lips. But it was to divine goodness, that his heart overflowed with gratitude, which was unspeakable, and which tears only could express. Christ Jesus, salvation, and eternal life were ever in his thoughts. The glory of the future world was constantly in his view.

The doctrine of the sleep of the soul till the general resurrection he had maturely and thoroughly investigated. The result of his studies obliged him to declare it no less uncomfortable, than unphilosophical and unscriptural. And now one of his sweetest reflections was, that his understanding in the vigour of health, obliged him to adopt this decision. He derived a high pleasure from the conviction, that instantly on leaving the body the righteous will enter on a state of happiness perfect in its kind, though not in that degree which they will experience at the final consummation.


dwelling on these topics, especially in mentioning his early and habitual attachment to piety, he sometimes feared the warmth of his feelings had betrayed him into too much selfcomplacency, and checked himself by exclaiming, "God forbid that I should boast. Is this a time of boasting, for sin ful dust and ashes in a situation like mine, my bodily frame dissolving, my memory gone, the light of reason expiring? No; it is a joy mingled with the profoundest humility and awe. It is with a sense of my own unworthiness and the allsufficient efficacy of Christ's sacrifice, that I cherish the hope of laying hold of eternal life, that crown incorruptible, which God reserves for those who love him." He could give no stronger proof of the persevering firmness and vivacity of his own faith, than by gently reproving his mournful attendants for the deficiency of theirs, in these words, the last which he uttered," Weep not for me, O ye of little faith."

in possession of a far more substantial reward? For this purpose let us never forget, that meditations on the future state, to be invigorating and consoling on a death bed, must not be then introduced for the first time. Generally speaking, they must have been habitually cherished in health and the vigour of life. It was this circumstance, which rendered our deceased brother's situation so tranquil. It was, as he often said, a steady and familiar acquaintance with death in his brightest and happiest days, which now on a bed of languor and pain, deprived that enemy of his sting. We cannot indulge the hope, that we shall die the death of the saint, unless we live as he does. Let this then be our earnest resolution. And may that God, who delights to see his creatures, thus commit their souls into his hands, confirm us in this resolution, assist us in the execution of it, and crown us by his grace with desired success.

It was in these happy sentiments and dispositions, that, when the dust returned to the earth, his spirit returned to God who gave it. Thus that respectable minister of Christ, after having spent so long a life in instructing and consoling mankind by his example, his writings, his precepts and exhortations, edifies them in his last moments. Blessed be the author and finisher of a-faith, which pro-, duces such glorious effects. What consolation does it afford to imperfect, sinful beings, whose life, is a span, and who know not how soon it may terminate? Faith is the only lamp, which can enlighten our steps in the path of felicity and glory. Shall we not then cultivate the sentiments and dispositions, which yielded such consolation to one, who, we trust, is now

Dr. Maclaine, as early as 1752, published a single sermon on the death of the Prince of Orange. In 1765, his able and faithful translation of Mosheim's Ecclesiastical History made its first appearance in two volumes quarto. It metavery favourable reception, and was soon reprinted in six volumes octavo. In this form all the subsequent editions, one excepted, have been published. A supplement to the quarto edition, containing the very valuable correc tions, additional notes, and dissertations, which had been added in the octavo edition, was published by Dr. Maclaine in 1768.

Soon after the appearance of Soame Jenyn's View of the internal evidence of Christianity, than which few publications, on their first appearance, have been more generally read, Dr. Maclaine ad

« PreviousContinue »