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may occasionally wing their flight, to admire the goodness and the justice of God. Pollok, borne in imagination down the stream of time, till the resurrection of the dead, and the scenes of the judgment were past, says:

“The essential particles remained, of which
God built the world, again renewed and improved ;
In clime and season, as fruitful as at first,

When Adam woke unfallen in paradise.” 5. The day when “the earth shall melt,” will be the day of judgment, or that immediately succeeding. Some have asserted, that all those texts which speak of the burning of the earth, were fulfilled in the destruction of Jerusalem. It seems to me, that the bible teaches very explicitly, that it will take place about the time of the general judgment. The earth is “reserved unto fire, against the day of judgment." Christ will then descend in flaming fire, taking vengeance on his enemies; and this great day of wrath in Rev. 6, will be at the time " the heavens depart," and "every mountain and island” shall be moved out of their places.

When the wicked are being cast into hell, then the heavens shall pass away with a great noise, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat. Then the mountains and valleys shall burn.

" The Andes burn, the Alps, the Appenines,
Taurus, Atlas, all the islands burn, -

The ocean shall burn and roll his waves of flame." Then shall be burning within and without, the flames shall rise and fall, till the earth shall be reduced to chaos.

The exposition given of the passage under notice, teaches very forcibly our dependence on God. He keeps the materials of the earth combined ; should he dissolve the union that now exists, how soon ruin would spread far and wide! Is it not as easy for God to dissolve the elements, as it is to keep them bound ? Surely it is of the Lord's mercies, that we are not consumed!

It also teaches, that God is determined to make an end of sin. The day is coming when every impenitent sinner will be shut up in hell—when Satan himself will be restrained. Neither the power nor influence of the wicked will extend beyond the adamantine walls of the eternal prison. The work of eradicating sin will not stop here. It will not be enough to shut up the wicked in hell. God will burn the earth, that has so long been the abode of sinners; he will melt down the mountains and dissolve the elements; "he will thoroughly purge his floor," and

" burn up the chaff with unquenchable fire,” and not a vestige of sin shall remain. It will be so changed, that in the new heavens and new earth there will be nothing which will suggest to any saint, the sins that he or others have committed. If, in the circling ages of eternity, Jeremiah should visit the new heavens and earth, he will not find the loathsome dungeon, nor David the caves in which he hid from the fury of Saul. There will be no field stained with blood, no bone of a human being moldering in the soil, nor any weapon for the destruction of human life.

ART. V.-THEATRICAL AMUSEMENTS.

The Theater, in its influence upon Literature, Morals, and

Religion. By ROBERT TURNBULL. Hartford, 1837.

It is not true, as Burke has somewhere affirmed, that vice loses half its evil, when it loses all its grossness.

The worst forms of evil, not unfrequently, appear under the most attractive dress. The very fact, that it is divested of its more revolting features, is what gives it all its influence over the minds of many. The virtuous man, for instance, is sufficiently shielded against intemperance, when it is clothed in rags,—when it is exhibited in the faltering tongue, the trembling limb, or the bloated countenance, or when surrounded with nothing to attract or divert the attention, with nothing to cover over and hide from view its hideous deformities. But change the scene; array this vice in the robes of splendor; cover over its hideousness with the pomp and circumstance of wealth ; surround it with the show of fashion, and the sprightliness of wit ; with the fascinations of art, and the brilliancy of genius, -and is it the same repelling vice as before ? Is not the cup, thus “ tinged with juices sweet," more likely to be drank? Is not the danger multiplied a thousand fold? And yet in the case supposed, this vice has lost its grossness. Evil without disguise, may be withstood with comparative ease. Satan, simply as "an archangel ruined," may be easily resisted; but it requires all the discernment of the intellect, and all the moral courage of the virtuous heart, to understand and resist his wiles, when transformed into an angel of light. The more perfect the concealment of his designs, the greater is the peril. The more beautiful and captivating the imagery is, with which he can decorate and adorn the features of some dark and insidious vice, the more successful will be his attempts, by it, upon the virtue of mankind.

Every effort, consequently, to disguise what is evil; to call it by a good name, or to conceal its real nature by throwing around it the gaudy decorations of art, the imposing powers of music, poetry, and mimic representation, in order to lessen its deformity, ought to be exposed, and held up to the just reprobation of a virtuous community. Our author has, therefore, we think, rendered an acceptable service to the cause of literature and religion, by the publication of the little volume before us. He has torn away much of that disguise, which has been thrown around the theater, and made it to stand out, as it were, by itself—alone—and to appear, what it really is, and ever has been, the source of incalculable mischief to society. Most sincerely, therefore, do we wish, that a copy of this work may find its way into the hands of every youth, ere he is tempted to approach the playhouse, or to cross its dangerous threshold.

If our pages have hitherto been silent on the subject of theatrical amusements, it has not been because we are ignorant of the evil of such things, or disinclined to bear our testimony against them. We, in common with most of those among whom the Spectator circulates, are opposed to the theater upon principle-opposed to it in every form which it has taken, or is likely to take, in this wicked world. We regard its amusements as more than useless—as positively injurious. Their deleterious influence can be shown with perfect certainty. The right and wrong in human conduct it is not difficult to determine. The will of God respecting the actions of men, always synonymous with their highest good, may easily be ascertained. It is in us, as well as around us. It is revealed to us as really in the nature or constitution of things, as it is in his written word. It is written as truly, if not as legibly, in the laws of our physical and moral being, as it is in the enactments of revelation. It is deducible, as directly from the effects of any cause upon the human mind, as if it were recorded in letters of fire.

The pain, for instance, consequent upon cutting the flesh, is as conclusive a prohibition of the act of mutilating and destroying our bodies, as if it were written out with a pen of iron upon every limb, and muscle, and nerve of the system. The effect upon our physical and moral nature, of all intoxicating drinks, conclusively demonstrates the sinfulness of such conduct. And universally, the bearing of any irregular course of

life upon the physical or moral constitution of man, speaks out the condemning sentence of God against it. Every act, therefore, may be fairly tested and its character determined, by its effects upon the intellect and the heart of man. These are its genuine fruits, the quality of which decides the character of the tree that produces them; for a good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither can a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit. In the moral world, then, effects determine the character of their causes.

To a test, thus plain and simple, we propose to subject the propriety of theatrical amusements. We shall say nothing at present about the immense expense of these amusements, either as it regards time or money; for if the fruit be good—if the effect upon the mind be salutary, it may justify all such expenditure. The main question that which must take precedence of all others-is this, What is the bearing of these amusements upon the physical, mental, and moral constitution of man? Do they in any respect make him a better man? Do they fit him for a more faithful discharge of the duties of life, and open before him the prospect of a higher and happier existence in another world? We say, another world, for we are not willing to argue this, or any other question pertaining to the mind of man, if it does not distinctly recognise the bearing of any act, or course of conduct, upon the whole existence of man. We cannot consent to stamp the mark of our approbation upon that, which, however it may affect one day, or month, or even year of life, with pleasure, will nevertheless bring blighting, mildew, and disgrace upon all the rest of existence. Every act ought to be tested, every practice tried, by its bearings upon the whole of our intellectual and moral being. Man is not a grasshopper, a being of a moment's existence. He is immortal, and it is therefore an insult to his noble destiny to consider any influence on him, simply and exclusively in relation to the nursery, the childhood of his being.

His present and future life are not isolated parts of existence, bearing no relation to each other. They are most intimately connected. The action of the one bears most powerfully upon the fruition of the other. As the discipline of infancy bears directly upon the respectability and happiness of manhood, so also do the habits that are formed, and the feelings which start into existence, in this infancy of our being—which are developed and invigorated in this cradle of immortal life, continue to reign, and actuate man forever. The habits and dispositions which he here forms and cherishes, and takes with him to his

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. The more beautiful and cap tivating the imagery is, with which he can decorate and adom the features of some dark and insidious vice, the more success ful will be his attempts, by it, upon the virtue of mankind.

Every effort, consequently, to disguise what is evil; to call it by a good name, or to conceal its real nature by throwing reh around it the gaudy decorations of art, the imposing powers of music, poetry, and mimic representation, in order to lessen its deformity, ought to be exposed, and held up to the just repnt : bation of a virtuous community. Our author has, therefore, we think, rendered an acceptable service to the cause of literature and religion, by the publication of the little volume before usuario He has torn away much of that disguise, which has been thrown around the theater, and made it to stand out, as it were, lagu the by itself—alone—and to appear, what it really is, and ever has been, the source of incalculable mischief to society. Most sil cerely, therefore, do we wish, that a copy of this work may find its way into the hands of every youth, ere he is tempted to approach the playhouse, or to cross its dangerous threshold

. If our pages have hitherto been silent on the subject of the atrical amusements, it has not been because we are ignoranted of the evil of such things, or disinclined to bear our testimony against them. We, in common with most of those amon? whom the Spectator circulates, are opposed to the theater upon

principle-opposed to it in every form which it has taken, or is as more than useless—as positively injurious. Their delete the. Wi likely to take, in this wicked world. We regard its amusements rious influence can be shown with perfect certainty. The right add and wrong in human conduct it is not difficult to determine. The will of God respecting the actions of men, always synony: mous with their highest good, may easily be ascertained. It is in us, as well as around us.

It is revealed to us as really in the nature or constitution of things, as it is in his written word. I is written as truly, if not as legibly, in the laws of our physical and moral being, as it is in the enactments of revelation. Liis deducible, as directly from the effects of any cause upon human mind, as if it were recorded in letters of fire. as conclusive a prohibition of the act of mutilating and destroy

The pain, for instance, consequent upon cutting the flesh, is ing our bodies, as if it were written out with a pen of iron upon every limb, and muscle, and nerve of the system. effect upon our physical and moral nature, of all intoxicating drinks, conclusively demonstrates the sinfulness of such coul

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