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TION AND CURE OF DISEASES.
yet to be taught but to prove one's tures, as the best means of fortify. self.
ing the mind against the fear of In this letter I have confined death.” myself to some general topicks. 6. Dr. Bard of New York, was a In my next I shall make you ac- practical as well as a professing quainted with our principal church- Christian. All the Christian mees, the ministers most eminent for thods for enlightening and renewtheir zeal and spirit, and the lay- ing mankind, found in him an able men, who are chiefly desirous to patron and a successful advocate. co-operate with you. On the cor- Of him it may truly be said, “ he rectness of my statements you may adorned the doctrine of God his depend, and I shall endeavour to Saviour in all things.” He showed make them with Christian reserve his faith by his works. The followand prudence. I have the honour ing extract from a memoir of him, to be, etc.
by Dr. Ducahet, will make known YOUR CORRESPONDENT his character." He was one of IN FRANCE." those
those very few physicians who consider it a duty, to advise and admonish their patients in their spi
ritual affairs. It was his constant ON THE EFFICACY OF THE "FAITH practice to procure, or to adminisOF THE GOSPEL” IN THE PREVEN: ter, religious instruction to the ig
norant, and spiritual consolation to
the distressed. And however in(Concluded from Vol. VI. p. 554.)
discreet and officious communica. 5. Having seen the sentiments tions of this kind may be considered and practice of some of the most by some, he has left upon record eminent European physicians, let his testimony to their usefulness, us now attend to what the Ameri- and to the general good will with can physicians have to say on this which they are received. In not important subject.
one of the many manuscripts (in That great luminary of medical my possession) of his annual adscience, Dr. Rush, enumerates dresses to the graduates of medi"piety towards God, a respect for cine, does he omit to recommend religion, and a regular attendance this practice; and to enforce it by upon publick worship, among the the assurance that, during thirty duties of a physician.” And he years of professional life, he had advises them, when “setting out in made it an uniform duty; and that business, to acquire such habits of he had very seldom regretted his punctuality in visiting their pa- conduct, having found such comtients, as shall not interfere with munications to be generally acceptacts of publick homage to the Su- able, and never productive of injury preme Being." He also recom- to the sick. It is very much to be mends the “reading of the Scrip- regretted that the example of this
truly eminent' and good physician • We confess ourselves at a loss what is not more frequently imitated, to understand by the “free self proba; and that medical men are so apt to tion" mentioned in this paragraph, and how the Roman Catholicks turn this Pro. disregard the eternal concerns of testant dogma against its authors, unless their patients, and to imagine that the objectionable position be to this ef. it is even necessary to divert their fect-that true religion consists in every thoughts from death and eternity. man adopting a faith and practice that fully satisfies himself—This certainly the Such conduct is a criminal neglect apostle Paul did before his conversion of a solemn duty, and betrays an EDITOR,
insensibility, as cruel as it is dan-,
gerous, to the best interests of those “Here all language fails; committed to their care. It was
Come then expressive silence, muse his too Dr. Bard's practice to call the
praise. early attention of his patients to I shall conclude my address by this important subject. Religious some extracts from the essay of admonition, he properly thought, the last mentioned eminent physishould not be deferred until all hope cian, entitled, “The Influence of of recovery is gone. This is not Physical Causes upon the Moral Fathe best chosen period for religious culty," since it appears very apinstruction, or the one most favour- plicable to the present discussion; able to its due effect upon the mind. which may be called “ An Essay It is not in the last moments of on the Influence of Moral Causes life, when the body is racked with on the Physical Faculties." pain, and the mind agitated and “ Let it not,” says Dr. Rush, “ be alarmed by the apprehensions of suspected, from any thing that I death; when a deadly stupor clouds have delivered, that I suppose the the faculties, or the imagination influence of physical causes upon flits, in wild deliriun, from object. the moral faculty renders the agento object, and from thought to cy of divine influence unnecessary thought, that the mind can be to our moral happiness. I only brought to prepare itself for the maintain, that the operations of the awful transition which it is to un- divine government are carried on dergo. Sickness is a season of re- in the moral, as in the natural flection with most men, and natu- world, by the instrumentality of rally induces a docility of temper, second causes. I have oply trodhighly favourable to the reception den in the footsteps of the inspirof wholesome admonition. It is ed writers. Nebuchadnezzar was now that religious instruction and cured of his pride, by means of soliadvice are most productive of ef- tude and a vegetable diet; Saul fect. If delayed till the last hours was cured of his evil spirit by of life, they may serve indeed to means of David's harp; and st. awaken the alarms of the sick man, Paul expressly says, “I keep my and to plunge him into despair, but body under, and bring it into subthey can seldom benefit his soul.” jection, lest that by any means,
The conduct of Dr. Bard, in when I have preached to others, I this particular, must commend it- myself should be a cast-away.'" self to the approbation of every ra
He also believes “ that in those extional and feeling man; and entitle traordinary cases where bad men him to be placed with those worthies are suddenly reformed, without who have united to exalted talent, the instrumentality of moral, or extensive erudition, and distin- rational causes, that the organiguished rank, the graces and vir- zation of those parts of the body tues of the Christian character. in which the faculties of the mind 7. Dr. Rush, after having nar
are seated, undergoes a physical rated his happy recovery from an change; and hence the expression attack of the Bilious Yellow Fever of a new creature,' which is made of 1793, and from a chronick dis. use of in the Scriptures to denote ease consequent thereon, acknow. this change, is proper, in a literal, ledges his obligations and gratitude as well as a figurative sense.” And to God, in these words: “ But he adduces, in proof of this, the wherewith shall I come before the assertion of Paul, that he " bears great Father and Redeemer of men; in his body the marks of our Lord and what sball I render unto him Jesus.” " It is probably the beginfor the issue of my life from the grave!
Rush's Werks, vol. i. p. 353,
piog of that perfect renovation remarks.” When this was written, of the human body, which is pre- we had not so particularly exadicted by St. Paul in the following mined, as we have since been called words: For our conversation is in to do, every part of the address now heaven, from whence we look for before our readers. Had this been the Saviour, who shall change our the case, we might perhaps have vile bodies, that they may be fa- forborne the pledge we gave; since shioned according to his own glo- the ample testimony of medical rious body. I shall not,” con- men themselves, especially of metinues he,“ pause to defend myself dical men of the first eminence for from the charge of enthusiasm in skill and reputation, is likely to be this place; for the age is at length of far more avail than any remarks arrived, so devoutly wished for by of our own. We shall, notwithDr. Cheyne, in which men will not standing, add a few thoughts, in the be deterred in their researches af- hope that they will be more reter truth, by the terror of odious or garded, when it is seen that the unpopular names.”
most competent judges are with us, in the opinions we deliver.
1. The worth of the soul is such, Editorial Remarks.
that if it were granted that the use We can by no means adopt the of those means which are calculated explanation of some facts, and the to promote its salvation did interexposition of certain passages, of fere with the speedy removal, or sacred scripture, which appear at even the final removal of disease, the close of this address. We would those who duly estimate the conalso observe, that the title of the cerns of eternity, in comparison Address attributes to one of the with those of time, would see and Christian graces, Faith, effects say, let no regard to the body enwhich immediately flow from some danger the eternal felicity of the of the other graces, such as Hope, immortal spirit. On this considerPatience, &c. Faith is indeed the ation, all who have any serious befoundation grace, and is ever ac- lief in an endless state of future companied by all the rest. Yet, happiness or misery should resolve, perhaps the title of the paper might that, so far as they have influence, more properly have been-The In- the sick shall not be suffered to pass fluence of Genuine Christian Piety, into the eternal world, without the in the Prevention and Cure of Dis- use of the best means which they eases. But although we thus advert can command, to aid them in preto what we deem inaccuracies, we paration for this great and decisive do not consider them as at all affect- crisis of their existence. ing the general merit of the essay. 2. Ministers of the gospel, and
We intimated, when we first in- those who are preparing for the satroduced Dr. Church's address to cred office, ought to make it a subthe notice of our readers, that we ject of particular attention and earhad long wished for a good oppor- . nest inquiry, how they may treat tunity to combat, the absurd, cruel the sick, in a manner most likely, and wicked opinion, entertained by under the divine blessing, to be atmany physicians, and embraced by tended with saving benefit
. It is many of their patients, that a cler. believed that this is a subject too gyman must be kept out of a sick little regarded by many ministers room, at least till the patient is past of the gospel, and by a large proporall hopes of recovery.” And we tion of theological students. There promised «some remarks of our is no part of the ministerial office own, and some facts witnessed by more delicate in its nature, than ourselves, in confirmation of our the proper method of treating per
sons in sickness; and it is to be penitent and believing sinners. We feared, that a part of the prejudice have known a clergyman-who against ministerial visits to the sought to allay anxiety and fear, chambers of the sick, may have by reminding the sick of a good arisen from some instances of in- moral life, and a regular attenddiscretion, or want of fitness, in on the ordinances of the those who have been called to the church-told that no repetition of performance of this duty. This is his visits was desired. A man of not the place to enter into any another spirit was sent for, and lengthened or particular statement, heard with the greatest interest. of what is believed to be the best 3. We confidently assert, that if manner of dealing with those who ministerial visits to the sick are are suffering from disease-It is a managed with discretion and tensubject on which a small volume derness, as well as fidelity, there is might profitably be written. We seldom, if ever, any reason to be apshall, however, not forbear to re- prehended that they will interfere mark, that the duty we contemplate with the recovery of the patientrequires, and may be considered as and that in many cases they will esconsisting in, tenderness and fidelity. sentially promote it. This position is Great tenderness should undoubt abundantly supported by the numeedly be used, in all the cases con- rous facts which are stated in the pretemplated. The spiritual physi- ceding essay, as well as by the opi-. cian should manifest deep sympa- nions there adduced, of some of the thy; and that he may manifest it, most distinguished physicians of he must feel it. He should endea- our own and other countries. We vour to put his own soul in the will add two or three striking insoul's place of the suffering patient, stances, witnessed by ourselves. and carefully consider, also, the bo- The first was of a lady in a declindily weakness of the party to be ing state, from pulmonary affection. addressed. This will give a cha. She had requested spiritual instrucracter to all that he says and does tion and aid, but had been refused to all his words and actions, and it, under the notion that she was to the very tones of his voice- only low spirited, and what is called which will be likely to have the nervous. But although asafoetida most happy effect. But no part of and opium were fully tried, neither this tenderness is to consist in the could quiet sleep be obtained, nor want of fidelity, or in endeavours incessant agitation and anxiety, to comfort the afflicted on other when awake, be prevented. At than gospel grounds. Not only length, to gratify her, and as a matdoes the minister of religion incur ter of experiment, a clergyman was an awful responsibility for himself, sent for to visit her. Her case was if he endeavours to sooth the sick found to be one of a very rational by unwarranted considerations, but, concern, in regard to the state of by so doing, he will sometimes en- her soul-accompanied by a matirely miss his object. A well- nifest want of suitable instrucinstructed individual, or one whose tion, direction, and encouragement. eyes have been opened on his lost These were afforded; and from the and miserable state as a sinner, will very first visit, through the whole see that his spiritual guide is “a of her protracted illness, no more physician of no value,” if he directs anodynes or antispasmodicks were to other ground of hope and com- needed, either to procure sleep, or fort than the riches of divine grace to prevent agitation. She was calm,
- the full redemption of Christ, and patient, quiet, and resigned-not the
way that is opened by him for the only more comfortable in her own extension of mercy to the chief of feelings, but unspeakably less trou.
blesome to her attendants than she demonstrate that it may be affordhad been before; and thus she re- ed, not merely without injury, but mained till her death. The second often with evident advantage to the instance mentioned (for we could aim of the physician? and when, if mention many) shall be of acute some bodily suffering were the condisease. An athletick man, in a sequence, it is infinitely outweighdangerous fever tending to pu. ed by the hopes of benefiting a tridity, was found in a state of soul, destined to happiness or great anxiety about his immortal “misery inconceivable and intermi. part. He was neither ignorant of nable! religious truth in general, nor of the exigency of his own case in particular; but the distress of his mind absorbed all regard to the
STRICTURES ON MODERN GEOLOGY. sufferings of the body. Counsel In our last November number we was given him; and in the midst of intimated our intention to transfer the prayer that followed, light, and to our pages, as soon as we should peace, and even joy, broke in, as find a good opportunity, some rehe affirmed, on his mind. There marks from the Christian Observer was manifestly an entire change in on the subject of Modern Geology his aspect, as well as in his conver- - We propose now to fulfil the in. sation; and a speedy recovery suc- tention then announced. But we ceeded. A third case has been wish, previously, to make a few obwitnessed by us, since we began to servations of our own, on the general write this article--the case of a fe. subject. male in dangerous illness, whose 1. We are of the opinion that the mind was so affected as to prevent cause of true religion will never be bodily rest, till after spiritual as- promoted, but greatly injured, by sistance and prayer; since which refusing to listen to the statement she has slept comfortably, and of any facts in natural history or hopes are entertained of her reco- science, under an apprehension that very. But instances of a similar they militate with divine revelation. kind, as already binted, might be If the things recorded in the Bible multiplied indefinitely. The wri- bave been revealed by the God of ter can affirm with truth, that in truth-the Creator of the world and the pastoral charge of one of the all things therein-they never can largest congregations in the United be inconsistent with well ascertainStates, for more than the fourth ed facts in his works, as they are part of a century, he never knew now exposed to our observation and an instance in which his ministe- scrutiny. We all see and admit rial visitations of the sick were the folly of Pope Urban VIII., in even apprehended, so far as he has endeavouring to oppose the Coperknown, to have been injurious. In nican theory of the planetary revoa few instances he has known them lutions, by his edicts and denunciaforbidden by friends and physi- tions. It is such an immediate diccians, and the sick kept in igno- tate of common sense, that one rance of their situation, till they truth can never contradict another; were surprised into eternity. The that he who refuses to admit a plain responsibility of such friends and matter of fact, because he apprephysicians, the writer would not hends it will contradict something incur for the universe-He hopes in the Bible, will always give the that every reader of this article enemies of the Bible the opportuwill avoid it. What excuse can be pity of claiming a triumph, which given for depriving the sick of re- they will not fail to improve. Facts, ligious aid, when facts innumerable when ascertained to be sucb, must Voz. VII.-Ch. Adv.