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He gives a most affecting account the will of God. The day previou of him in one of his lucid hours. to his death, his brother having reHis wife and his friend had been marked to him that heaven was a praying by his bed-side. “ When blessed place, his countenance lighthis friend” continues Mr. Price, ed up, and he exclaimed, “O) yes, “had ceased praying, your lament- it is indeed.”: “ And you," his ed minister raised himself upon his brother replied, “ will soon be left elbow, and with his right hand there." He paused, and, with an earnestly stretched out towards expression of voice and countenance, heaven, and with a voice in its full as if he dared not indulge a wish strength, addressed one of the most for immediate blessedness, he reclear, connected, pertinent, and joined, “ That must depend on the awful prayers to God that was per- will of Him with whom are the haps ever uttered by man. It com- issues of life and death." Just beprised a reference to his wife, his fore he expired, his afflicted family children, himself, and his friend; being assembled round his bed, he and then distinctly to his own flock, prayed for a considerable time in and all the people of the place, and the most fervent and energetic to the extension of Christ's king- manner, with all his faculties evidom throughout the world.” His dently in full exercise. At last his chief request was, that “they strength failed, and he continued might be prepared to stand before his intercourse with Heaven in a the Son of Man." At the close, he lower tone, when the word “ tempsunk down powerless and exhaust- tation" struck the ear of his anxied on his bed. He continued for ous brother ; but, on listening atabout ten days in a state of the tentively, he perceived with delight, greatest danger, and twice he seem- that he was praying for his children ed rescued from the grasp of death that they might be kept from “ the by the assiduity and skill of his temptations of the world, the flesh, medical attendants. At the end of and the devil." His voice then that time, a favourable change in gradually sinking, in a few minutes, the disorder renewed the hopes of without a sigh or å struggle, he his anxious friends. The delirium closed his earthly labours, and engradually subsided, but he was too tered into his eternal rest. The weak to admit of conversation. feelings of all present during the Still the peaceful state of his mind heart-affecting stillness which sucwas evident to all around him, and ceeded, were in perfect unison with his gentle affectionate spirit made the expression of one amongst them, him endeavour by words and looks “ Blessed are the dead which die of kindness to shew his gratitude in the Lord.” They who witnessfor their attentions and services. ed this scene can never forget it. The extraordinary interest felt for May their last end be like his ! him was not confined to his own When Mr. Cotterill's death was family and congregation, but seem- announced, it seemed as if every ed to pervade the whole population one who heard the mournful intelof the town in which he resided. ligence had lost a son, a father, or
The hopes which had been ex- a brother. A few days after his cited, were soon crushed by a re- decease, a meeting of the seatturn of fever, which in two days holders of St. Paul's was held, for the put an end to his sufferings. The purpose of expressing their sorrow same holy calm reigned within his for the loss of their minister, and breast to the last. Not a shadow their respect for his memory. The of a doubt seems ever to have cross- whole congregation were requested ed his mind with respect to his fu. to put themselves in mourning ; ture prospects; and his own will and as if they felt every mark of seemed annihilated, being absorbedin kindness and attention to their des
parted friend (the name by which and soundness of intellect ; not for they affectionately designated him) the exhibition of one dazzling talent as a personal favour to themselves, that attracted the admiration of one votes of thanks were passed to the class of hearers, but for possessing medical gentlemen who had attend a union of mental endowments upon
him with unwearied assi- which rendered him interesting and duity, and to those ladies who had useful to all. His mind was so watched over him and ministered to constituted and so balanced as his wants with maternal tenderness. exactly to fit him for his work. It His funeral was attended by all was quick in perception, strong in the clergymen in the town, and by apprehension, happy in combinamany from the surrounding neigh- nation, and ready, honest, and argubourhood; alınost all the Dis- mentative in the development of senting ministers in the place also its stores. His intellectual powers requested leave to pay this last were much assisted by his moral tribute of respect to his memory. qualities. An unusual freedom Nearly the whole of his congrega. from selfishness, vanity, and irritation followed his remains to the bility, made him see every subject grave, and many thousands of sin- in the clear day-light of truth, and cere mourners were assembled.
stamped a peculiar value on the deIt was well known to Mr. Cot- cisions of his judgment. In attemptterill's congregation, that his family, ing to pourtray this part of his consisting of a wife and five child character, the language of his ren, were left without provision, and friend, Mr. Price, must again be they hastened to afford them effec- adopted. “ If there be one quality tual aid. The day after the funeral more than others which in him a meeting was convened which was manifested itself with singular femarked by a truly generous flow of licity, it was sweetness of temper. Christian feeling and benevolence. When sweetness of temper is comNor were this feeling and benevo- bined with strength of understandlence confined to the neighbour. ing, soundness of principle, and hood of Sheffield. In Staffordshire, corresponding exertions, it constiwhere Mr. Cotterill had previously tutes the greatest charm of earthly exercised his ministry, and indeed existence. Oh! what an appalling wherever his character was known, sum of misery in domestic and the esteem and affection with which social life is the product of violent, he was regarded, have been evi. of sullen, of envious, of obstinate, denced by liberality towards those of jealous and froward temper! whom he left behind him *.
Throughout the whole of our thirty Though the character of Mr. years friendship, some of which Cotterill has been, to a considerable were passed in almost constant and extent developed in the preceding close intercourse, although we ochistorical sketch of his life, it may casionally thought differently, and be desirable to advert more particu. came to opposite conclusions upon larly to some of its leading features, subjects which cannot be deemed of with a view, chiefly, of illustrating minor importance, and in which the cause of his ministerial useful- both of us were seriously interested, ness. He was remarkable, not for yet during that period of thirty originality of genius, but for vigour years I never heard one unkind The relatives of Mr. Cotterill here I never had known cause to suspect,
word, I never saw one unkind look, acknowledge with unfeigned gratitude the and I never did suspect, him of one extensive bounty of the Christian public to his widow and children, for whose
unkind thought towards me. Nay benefit upwards of Four Thousand Pounds more, I never knew him (and I were collected within a few
months after think I was continually admitted to his decease.
his inmost privacies), I never knew him utter, or appear - secretly to and where a strong shock would be entertain, one unworthy thought of necessary to impress it vividly upon any human being ! Hence it was the mind of others, an apparently that with due allowance for the trivial incident would suffice for a decided opinions which such an most operative influence on his own. understanding as his could not but It was not death, por any of its cirform, and the decided line of con- cumstances; it was not alarm of duct which such principles as his dying, for I'know not that he ever could not but pursue, no man living had any; it was not apprehension perhaps, within an equal circle, of pain or disease, or any violent or ever had fewer open enemies, and lingering mode of dissolution;-it more private friends. Wherever he was the moment after death; it was went, affectionate and warm hearted the instant passing into the prefriends seemed to spring up around sence of his God; it was the hour him at once, to bail him as almost when the Son of Man cometh;' it of a higher order of created beings, was the swallowing up of time and to increase in numbers and in into eternity;' it was the sudden demonstrations of increasing regards, burst upon immortal scenes; it was An effect so happy was the result the instantaneous call to a state to of a most felicitous combination in be fixed for ever, be it what it
may ; which sweetness of temper beaming it was an awful though adoring in a countenance which was its apprehension of the unutterable most suitable index, seemed to hold Majesty of the Most High; it was a very prominent place. This tem- the act of giving account to God; per when combined with such prin- it was something, perhaps, stronger ciples, such talent, and such ex- and clearer than I can state to you, ertions as his, seems to form what the which in an instant, and at any holy Apostle has distinctly desig. instant, could impart a holy solemnated thegood man, for whom perad, nity to his cheerful mind, which venture some would even dare to die." could as instantly dispose it to the
"In juxta-position with this very more direct impulses and acts of conspicuous feature which disposed religious duties. Thus to him, time him to uniform cheerfulness in him- and eternity were (if I may so express self, and to the promotion of it in it) closer together than to most men. others, I would place (what might To him the veil which hung between surprise many) a constantly pre- them was of thinner texture; the vailing and most powerfully ope- line which separated them of shorter rative impression of the vanity of length. Hence, perhaps, he was life, and the nearness of every man habitually nearer to his God than to his final destination. He ever many other real Christians; and appeared to me, from the very first without a particle of unbecoming of his religious impressions to the levity on the one hand, or of last, to have upon his mind a more severity and harshness on the other, habitual and realizing impression of was at once the humble, the earnest, the near approach and certainty of the energetic minister of Christ.” future judgment, than most other But, one of the most striking men. He had less of prospective plan, 'features in Mr. Cotterill's characand looking forward to years to ter was his disinterestedness, They come, than most other men; and was who best knew the interior of his always, though unobtrusively, dis- mind, and who, during a series of posed to that seriousness of view years, had abundant opportunities which easily admitted the possibi- of discovering its real tendencies, lity of that day or that night then never could perceive the least appassing being his last. This possi- proach to an undue consideration of bility, which others would coldly himself. On the contrary, he was allow, he would feelingly believe; ever willing to give up his own just rights, if he could thereby contri- character which has been here given bute to the happiness of others. In of him may possibly appear partial the intercourse of social life, tests or exaggerated; but they who knew of character in this respect are of him best, will, it is firmly believed, constant recurrence and of various most clearly acknowledge its faithdescription. Many who may be fulness. Did he then, it may be disinterested in pecuniary concerns, asked, possess all this excellence are extremely selfish with regard to without any countervailing defects? their personal gratifications. They It may perhaps be questioned, will sacrifice their money, but not whether, whilst he was ever ready their ease, their reputation, their to attend to the temporal wants of feelings, or their opinions. But others, he paid all that regard which the disinterestedness of Mr. Cotte was necessary to his own worldly rill was of a very different order ; circumstances : but, if he did fail it extended to all those particulars, here, this did not arise from indoand plainly proved to those who had lence or self-indulgence ; few men any knowledge of him, that he were ever more free from these sought “ not his own, but the things vices. It was the infirmity of human of Jesus Christ." In public and in nature which, in avoiding one error, private life, the glory of God, and verged towards another. He had the good of his fellow-creatures a very strong conviction upon his appeared to be his constant and mind, of the extreme sinfulness of undivided aim; and though he a worldly-minded spirit in a minister could have turned aside into the of Christ, which made him shrink paths of ease and worldly emolu- from every approach to it. Beyond ment, he deliberately chose the this it would not be easy to fix upon path of labour and comparative any thing in his conduct of a ques. poverty. It is evident that these tionable nature. Doubtless he parqualities of mind and heart, for took of that depravity of heart which Mr. Cotterill was chiefly dis- which has spread itself through the tinguished, were peculiarly adapted whole family of fallen man; and to give effect to his ministerial in whatever he was, as he himself structions. And when a strong would have been the first to declare, sense of duty constrained him to “ he was by the grace of God.”. oppose the plans or wishes of others,, The differences in natural disposition these qualities were all brought into are so great, that the conflict between active exercise, and produced the the two opposing principles of the happiest results. His moderation flesh and spirit which takes place was known unto all men; and sooner in the heart of every Christian, is or later all who had an opportunity far less observable in some characof viewing his conduct, were con- ters than in others. But we must vinced that he was influenced by not therefore rashly conclude that the purest motives. While this they have had less to overcome, conviction abated prejudice, and because their trials and temptations the sweetness of his disposition won have been of a different nature. affection, the unshrinking firmness Nor should any omit to follow their of his character would not allow example on the ground that they him to make any undue concessions, do not possess an equally happy even for the sake of that peace temperament of mind. With rewhich he so greatly prized. His con- spect to those virtues which are peduct was uniformly consistent with culiarly adapted to recommend rea remark which he frequently made, ligion in the world, it is indeed that he was always ready to saori- strange that any persons can fice feeling, but never principle. neglect to exercise them, and yet
To those who were not personally imagine that they are actuated by a acquainted with Mr. Cotterill, the supreme desire to promote the glory
of God and the salvation of men. But unhappily this is not the case Had there been no express com- with the great bulk of mankind; mand in Scripture to adorn the doc- they habitually forget him, they trine of God our Saviour in all think not of his presence, they seek things, it would have been includ- not his mercy, they are not grateed in the law of love; and it is dif- ful for his gifts. And, what is ficult to believe that man sincere worst of all, their forgetfulness is in his Christian profession, who al- wilful: they neglect him, because leges any natural disposition what- they do not love him; they are unever as a sufficient excuse for not willing to be reminded of him, beexhibiting religion in an attractive cause they dread his righteous disform. There are so many subor- pleasure, and have no wish to walk dinate motives to impel men to the in the way of his commandments. cultivation of what is amiable and Far from rejoicing when told that praise-worthy in the sight of their the Lord reigneth, they would confellow-creatures, that it might have ceal themselves, if possible, from been imagined an Apostolic injunc- his omniscient eye, and withdraw tion to this effect was unnecessary. themselves from his dominion; they But the Spirit of God knew better would live as beings of to-day who the backwardness of the human have no souls and no concern beheart to all that is good, even yond the grave. But is this reasonwhen renewed by Divine grace. able? is it the return which even St. Paul therefore was taught to
our natural conscience tells us we urge his beloved converts to the owe to our Creator ? Above all, is study and practice of the social it conduct becoming those who say virtues, by positive precept, by per- that they believe in Divine revelasonal example, and by the promise tion; who acknowledge his being of the Divine favour, and of that and perfections, as disclosed to us blessedness, which is inseparable in his word; and who profess to from an intimate communion with worship him in the Gospel of his the God of peace.
“ Finally, bre. Son? Far otherwise ! God ought thren,” he says, “whatsoever things ever to be near to us in our thoughts, are true, whatsoever things are ho. as he is near to us in reality; and nest, whatsoever things are just, if we learn to know him aright, and whatsoever things are pure, what- to seek an interest in his favour, soever things are lovely, whatsoever the remembrance of his presence, things are of good report ; if there far from filling us with gloom and be any virtue, and if there be any apprehension, will be a daily source praise, think on these things. Those of repose and .consolation, Our things which ye have both learned ignorance will be enlightened, our and received, and heard, and seen weakness will be strengthened, our in me, do; and the God of peace sorrows will be assuaged; we shall shall be with you."
rejoice that he reigneth, and shall feel it to be our highest wisdom
and privilege to submit ourselves to FAMILY SERMONS.-No. CXC.
his righteous government.
In pursuing the consideration of Psalm xcvii. 1.- The Lord reigneth, this subject, the text will lead us,
let the earth rejoice ; let the mula in the first place, to contemplate titude of isles be glad thereof.
the universal dominion of God; and,
secondly, to inquire why we should Every thing within us and around rejoice in his superintendence. us should perpetually recal to our First, then, we learn from the minds the presence and the perfec- passage before us, that the Lord tions of Him in whom “ we live reigneth.”—The right of the Al-". and move and have our being." mighty to this supreme dominion,