페이지 이미지

was enabled steadily to pursue for almost half a century. Though not without seasons of darkness, yet, on the whole, the time of his spiritual espousals seems to have been, emphatically, “ the day of the gladness of his heart.” In conversation with a friend, some few years since, he expressed the fol-lowing sentiments in nearly the following manner. " The most pleasant revival, I think, which I ever witnessed, was that in which I obtained my hope. I then knew little of Satan's wiles, and the deceitfulness of the heart. I was free from the care and anxiety of a settled pastor. The scene was new, and I gave myself up to the enjoyment of it. But since I received the charge of souls, it has been different. I have found revivals to be such critical and important seasons, that my solicitude and sense of responsibility have greatly checked my joy. Now, on seeing a person altogether careless, in a time of God's special mercy, I tremble for fear he will be left without a share in the blessing. If I find one under slight serious impressions, I am in distress because he has not a deeper sense of his sin and ruin. If I discover a case of pungent conviction, my joy is limited by a fear that this person will yet grieve the Holy Spirit, and be given over to a reprobate mind. When I meet one in the first transports of hope, I trust I feel a peculiar satisfaction, yet I cannot but remember the stony-ground-hearers, and pray God in my poor way, to save from fatal delusion. When I find a professor of Christ fast asleep, my heart sinks within me: and on seeing in professors or young converts a forwardness to promote the work,

I am sometimes afraid they will do serious injury, through a want of knowledge or of prudence. And O, how anxiously do I watch any changes in the work! how exceedingly trying to see evidence of its decline! How do I tremble, for fear our sins as a church, and especially my own defects, should provoke God to withdraw his gracious influence. Thus, brother, turn what way I will, a revival, with all its animating things, is to me a scene of amazing solemnity. And then you know, how a mistaken zeal sometimes leads our brethren of other denominations to take advantage of such a time, and come in among our dear flocks to entice away the inexperienced lambs."

But these feelings of pastoral solicitude must not be taken for a distrustful spirit. No man, in a season of religious revival, seemed to have more entire reliance on the arm of Jehovah. Yet, he was tremblingly alive in the use of divinely appointed means. It should also be stated, that Mr. Hallock ever held in high estimation the judicious efforts of laymen, and that he had great confidence in the leading members of his own church. Few clergymen have given equal encouragement to meetings of youth, in which the more prominent young converts might take an active part. This we might, indeed, expect, from a knowledge of his own early practice in such meetings. Within a year of his death, he spoke with strong emotion of the grateful assistance which he had received in revivals from members of his church; and expressed his conviction that it was even more valuable than the labors of an evangelist would probably have been. He added; “I believe, that when God has a special work of grace to perform in any place, he usually provides some prominent instrument;—that this is sometimes an obscure individual in the church, who receives for this purpose a fresh anointing, and then is peculiarly active and useful in arousing his more tardy brethren to duty."


Vr. Hallock begins to think of preaching the Gospel.---Commences preparatory study,--Severe trial at Northampton.-Return to the farm.--Pleasant reflections.-Resumes his books. --Makes a profession of religion.-State of his heart.-- Activity and usefulness in the church. --Resolutions.

MR. Hallock's narrative continues: “I would here notice, that, for several months, I had had almost a constant impression of my having a call to be a preacher of the Gospel, and a strong desire to be thus employed, if the will of God. Several of my friends mentioned the thing to me, and asked me if it was not my duty to devote myself to the Gospel ministry; some, to encourage me, made me small presents.

“In April, 1780, I went to Northampton, to see Mr. Dwight, now president of Yale College, to know if I could attend his school the ensuing summer. The twentieth of May was the noted dark morning.* While others around me were terrified, I do not know that I felt the least agitation, but spake to them concerning Jesus. In the afternoon we had a meeting, and I addressed them with unusual freedom

-the attention of the people was greater than common. May twenty-fifth, I began to study with Mr. Joseph Barker who was preaching in Goshen, as a

* Mr. Hallock here refers to what has been called, in the Eastern States, the dark day.It was a time of general consternation--the sun, from some unknown cause was so far obscured, that the light of candles was needful.

candidate. My board was given me by the neighbors. About this time, I had, I think, rather a greater sense than common of the wickedness of my heart, the temptations of this world, and my exposure to be overcome by them; also, of my absolute dependence on the Lord, and that if saved it must be all of free grace.

“On the ninth of June I wrote thus: “Things do appear more clear than they did. Blessed be God for it, forever and ever. O my soul, praise the Lord, and call upon his name ; O praise him, while you have strength to move.' I was now much in the habit of writing a sort of verse, like the following, which I find written in my diary on the twenty-first.

'I am a sinner, and most vile
of all the human race,
Lord, wash away my sins, I pray,
By thy free, sovereign grace.'

“On the seventh of August, I went to Northampton and joined Mr. Dwight's school. I was one of the oldest scholars, and yet the most deficient in learning. My mind was seriously impressed; the school in general were light and vain. The dry study of the Latin was also a great trial to me; for I wished to spend my whole time in reading the Bi-, ble and other religious books, in connexion with other spiritual duties.”

Mr. Hallock, afterwards, in conversation with his brother, remarked, that he could not study Virgil with interest and delight, because there was nothing

« 이전계속 »