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whole soul enters into it, especially the last two verses.' 'Why do you not request that it may be given out?' 'Because it does not become one of my age to dictate.' "Tis no dictation, but a gratifica. tion of your friends; it secures congeniality through the service when you mention the hymns you wish. *And can we have it to Staughton?" No, to Prospect.' 'No, no, Staughton; that is my tune for a common metre, and Shirland for short metre.' The 5th verse he frequently quoted.”
"One day, mentioning to him an interesting text of Mr. Cecil's, preached on the last night of the year, said he, “That will just do for me to preach at Brighton, to conclude the services of the present year. But don't shew me Mr. Cecil's till I bave composed mine. I would not borrow a single idea."
“Preaching one morning at Hoxton, after he had prayed as usual at his entrance into the pulpit, I missed him; he bent forward for a considerable tinie so low, that I could scarcely perceive him from the gallery. When I afterwards asked him if any thing ailed him, said he, 'When I went into the pulpit, and saw that crowded audience, recollecting that they were all looking to me for instruction, and remembering my own youth and inexperience, I was overwhelmed, and leaning forward, implored more carnestly the divine assistance.”
“While preaching a: Jewin-street, he one after. noon took the two lower steps at once, in ascending the pulpit stairs. When we afterwards met, I asked, Did you notice the manner of your going into the pulpi:?! I did, and thought that you would al
took the two when we after of your going d althe pulpit stairovíce the manner that you w
$o-it was inadvertent; but it was wrong. It did not become the solemnity of the place.--I never remember such a circumstance before, and will be more guarded in future." As a proof of the necessity of his watchfulness over the minutiæ of his ac. tions, I mention that an aged Christian said to me some time afterwards, I loved Spencer's sermons, but there was a lightness about him.'-'A lightness! when, and where did he discover it?" "At our meet. ing, in jumping up the pulpit stairs.' 'Did you see it more than once?' 'No.' Then I can tell you, that once he felt and lamented it as deeply as you could; and I am sure that he never repeated it. Is not that satisfactory?' It is.”
“Spencer followed Cecil; he united deep humility with true ministerial dignity: nor do I conceive it possible for a youth to be less affected by popularity than he was; and as to flattery, if his flatterers. bad known the light in which he viewed them, they would have been silent. Coming from a vestry, where adulation had been offered-Don't fear for me,' said he, 'on account of what has passed; it was to weak to hurt: my danger is when those, on whose judgment I depend, speak unguardedly! At another time, after a young man had been very lavish in his praises, (who had several times been guilty of the same impropriety), I told him I thought the next time he addressed himself to me, I should give him a bint of it. 'O no,' said he 'treat it with the same contempt that I do. To mention it, would give too much importance to his judgment. I would not have him think that his judgment could do any harm,"
"Spencer was particularly happy in his choice of texts for particular occasions; 'I feel great difficulty,' said he, 'in preaching at Hertford, where I have to address many who walked with God before I was born. To-morrow will be the first Sabbath that I have regularly supplied there. I have chosen for my subject, Romans xvi, 7.' In which he shewed what ië was to be in Christ; and the duties wbick aged Christians owe to younger ones—faithful reproof and exhortation-prayer for them, &c. For his sermon on regeneration, he chose James i, 18, which as he said, comprised the whole subject;the efficient cause--The will of God;' the grand ineans used the word of truth;' the great end in view-that believers should be Fürst fruits of His creatures. A gentleman, who possesses a finc mind, said to me, I had heard so much of Spen: cer, that when I went to hear him, I expected to be disappointed; but I found the reverse to be the case. When he gave out his text it was with an emphasis which so forcibly laid, open the apostles argument, that my attention was rivetted, and I was perfectly astonished.”
'He loved to improve the festivals of the church, such as Christmas and Easter, 'because,' said he,
people expect then to hear upon the subject, and I think we ought to meet every appearance of pre. paration of mind with suitable instruction. The passage of scripture which led my mind to the ministry, and which satisfies me as to the proprieny of my engaging in it, is that promise of God to the Gentile church, Isaiah Ixix, 21.-Oh! that text is very precious 10 me; while the death of Miss
at Brighton, and Miss at , tends to
convince me that I am right.' Those ladies died in the Lord, and were called under Spencer's ministry.”
“I used,' said he, 'to feel very much in preaching before certain characters. My difficulty is now re. moved by considering, that, let them be as learned or as pious as they may, it is probable that they have not turned their attention to the individual point before me so closely as I have, and therefore it is likely that my sermon may afford some in. struction even to them, and this thought gives me courage.”
“Mr. Spencer's simplicity in dress was well known. He avoided in that respect the very appearance of evil, that his ministry might not be blamed. One Sabbath morning, when he called for me, he had a new coat on, which I told him I thought was more fashionable than he would apa prove. I 'did not know it,' said he, and on the next Sabbath morning, he asked me if I thought it more becoming then: he had had it altered.”
"I was desired by several medical gentlemen to inform him, that unless he slackened his exertions, he could not live to see five and twenty. When I mentioned it, he said, 'that it certainly must be at. tended to, for that his hope was to live a long and useful life.' He therefore determined to alter the length of his sermons from an hour or sixty-fiye minutes to forty-five.”
"I am going,' said he, 'to preach at Vauxhall to. morrow, where you may come with a very safe conscience. You need not be afraid of a large congre. gation there, You do not like large congregations for me; but don't you remember how much more encouragement and satisfaction the man has who fish. es in a pond which is full of fish, than he who fish. es in a place where he knows there are but two OK three."
“Before S. left the academy, a gentleman, whose judgment, or piety, few are disposed to dispute, said to me 'if it were not for the sound of his voice, with my eyes shut; I could suppose him a man of seventy. He is ripening fast for heaven-I can fancy him an angel, come down into the pulpit, soon to re
“Another gentleman, possessed of undeniable critical skill, and difficult to please, after he had heard him, said, “I stood the whole service and I could have stood till midnight. I felt as under the influ. ence of a charm I could not resist, and was rivetted to the spot, intent only upon the fascinating object I saw before me.”
“It was with sincere pity that se saw any young minister descend from the holy dignity of his station, by attention, as soon as the service was concluded, to the advance of females, who, had they really re. ceived the benefit they professed, would have shewn it in a very different way."*:
* This is to Spencer's honor. Those who are accustomed to attend the Testries in London, after the sermons of popular preachers, will enter into the meaning of this observation. It would be well, if sowe whom it. may con oern would also take the hiņt it afforels.