Page images

clearer view of God's dispensations, those astonishing hopes, and consoling promises, which are supplied by the inspired penmen of the New. For, although, in sublime description of the attributes and perfections of the Almighty, in earnestness of supplication, and in warmth of adoration, the royal Psalmist must ever stand unrivalled, yet his evangelical knowledge 'was necessarily incomplete, because the day-spring had not yet dawned from on high : (Luke i, 78.) Even under the influence of prophetic inspiration, David saw, but as " through a glass darkly,” the saving truths of Redemption and Sanctification. These truths, therefore, taught as they were by Christ and His Apostles, and illustrated by the great transactions of His life and death, may surely form in a Christian Congregation as fit subjects for devotional melodies, as the events of Jewish history and the precepts of the Mosaic Law suggested to the holy Psalmist.”

These interesting and all important topics are prominently held forth to view in the present compilation, which is full of the glorious Gospel of the blessed God;' therefore are the Hymns contained therein as “ much more illustrious than those of the son of Jesse, who only knew 'the power and glory' of Jehovah as he had seen them in the sanctuary,' which was but the shadow of the New Testament Church, -as the face of Moses, holding communion with God, was brighter than the veil which he cast over it when conversing with his countrymen."


Surely there lives not a Christian who thinks scorn of the sacred employment of singing. In every age, and every clime, in all the changes and chances of life, it is the appropriate language of the devotional spirit, the natural expression of religious gratitude.-(1 Sam. ii. Isaiah xxxviii, 20. 1 Chron. xiii, 8; xvi, 8-36. 2 Chron. v, 13. Luke i. 46-55.)

It has been the pious recreation of the merry, (James v, 13,) the midnight solace of the captive, (Acts xvi, 25,) the animating farewell of the martyr, (Huss, Jerome of Prague, &c.) It has lent its aid to record the thanksgiving of the legislator, (Deut. xxxii,) and of the conqueror, (Judges, v,) to grace

the riage festival, (Psalm xlv,) and to consecrate the memory of the mighty fallen, (2 Sam. i, 19.) It has been the employment of patriarchs and prophets, of priests and kings, of apostles and angels, yes, and of one (Matt. xxvi, 30,) exalted “ far above all principality and power, and might, and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this world, but also in that which is to come,” (Ephes. i, 21,) even of the blessed and incarnate Son of God.'

At the creation of man, the morning stars sang together, and all the sons of God shouted for joy ; (Job xxxviii, 7,) at his redemption, the glad tidings were chaunted by a multitude of the heavenly host : (Luke ii, 13) and at the final consummation of his being, when “ all must appear before the judgment seat of Christ,” (2 Cor. v, 10,) it may be that “ the spirits of just men made perfect ” shall be welcomed into the portals of the New Jerusalem by “ the harps of God,” and by the voice of choral symphony called to see their Saviour face to face, and to serve Him day and night, it may be that they shall join the innumerable company of angels, and sing the new song, saying, “ Blessing, and honor, and glory and power unto Him that sitteth upon the throne, and unto the Lamb for ever and ever.” (Rev. v. 13.)

As the workings of the heart of man, and of the Spirit of God, are in general the same in all who are the subjects of the riches of divine grace, it is earnestly hoped that this compilation will be acceptable to Christians of all denominations. With an humble prayer to Almighty God, “ without whom nothing is strong, nothing is holy," for His blessing upon it, this little work is offered to the service and acceptance of all who “ love the Lord Jesus Christ in sincerity," of every name, and in every place, into whose hands it may fall, but more particularly it is dedicated to the members of Christ's mystical body in this Parish and neighbourhood, with the view of promoting their growth and establishment in the grace of our God and Saviour Jesus Christ.


[blocks in formation]



« PreviousContinue »