Owen - BX9315 O81

4 THE LIFE OF T » mostly well studied and digested, though he generally used no notes in the pulpit. His piety and devotion were eminent, and his experimental knowledge of spi- ritual things were very great. In all relations he behav- ed himself like a great Christian. [It ought to be men- tioned (as one of his successors observes) to Dr. Owen's bpnour, that he seems to have been one of the first of our countrymenwho entertained just and liberalnotions of the right of private judgment, and of toleration; which he was honest and zealous enough to maintain in his writings, whenthe times were the least encou- raging, for he not' only published two pleas for in- dulgenceand toleration in 1667, when the Dissenters HE AUTHOR. were suffering persecution under Charles II. but took the same side much earlier, pleading very cogently against intolerance, in an essay for the practice of church-government, and a discourse of toleration, both which are printed in the collection of his sermons and tracts; and clearly appear to have been written, and were probably first published about the beginning of 1647, when the parliament was arrived at full power, and he was much in repute.] He was buried at Bunhill, with uncommon respect, where he has a tombstone with a Latin inscription; the following is an accurate English translation ofit: JOHN Owen, D. D. Born in the county ofOxford, The son ofan eminent minister, Himself more eminent,' And worthy to he enrolled Among the first divines of theage. Furnished withhuman literature In all its kinds, And in its highest degrees, He called forth all his knowledge, In an orderly train, To serve the interests of religion, Andminister in the sanctuary ofhis God. In divinity, practical, polemic, and casuistical, He excelled others, and was in all equal to himself. The Arminian, Socinian, and Popish errors, Those Hydras, whose contaminating breath, And deadly poison infested the church, Ire, wills more than Herculean labour, Repulsed, vanquished, and destroyed. The whole ceconomy of redeeming grace, Revealed and applied by the Holy Spirit, IIe deeply investigated, and communicated to others, Having first felt its divine energy, According to its draught in the holy scriptures, Transfused into his own bosom. Superior to all terrene pursuits, Ile constantly cherished, and largely experienced That blissful communion with Deity He so admirably describes in his writings. While on the road to heaven His elevated mind Almost comprehended Its full glories and joys. When he was consulted On cases of conscience, His resolution contained The wisdom of an oracle. ' He was a scribe every way instructed In the mysteries of the kingdom ofGod. In conversation he held up to many, In his public discourses to more,. In his publications from the press to all, Who were set out for the celestial Zion, The effulgent lamp ofevangelical truth To guide their steps to immortal glory. While he was thus diffusing his divine light, With his own inward sensations, And the observation ofhis afflicted friends, His earthly tabernacle gradually decayed, Till at length his deeply-sanctified soul, Longing for the fruition of its God, Quitted the body: in younger age A most comely and majestic form; But in the latter stages of life, Depressed by constant infirmities, Emaciated by frequent diseases, And aboveall crushed under the weight Of intense and unremitting studies, It became an incommodious mansion For the vigorous exertion of the spirit In the service of its God. He left the world on a day* Dreadful to the church By the cruelties of men, But blissful to himself By the plaudit of his God, August 24, 1683. Aged 67. The ever-memorable Bartholomew-day, 1662, when the good ministers to the umber of 2000 wereejected from their livings, or silent+ ed, for eon- compliance with the Act ofUniformity. _