"Poor little Faith!" thought he, for his heart smote him.
"Faith kept me back a while," replied the young man, with a tremor in his voice, caused by the sudden appearance of his companion, though not wholly unexpected.
"Well, then, to end the matter at once," said Goodman Brown, considerably nettled, "there is my wife, Faith. It would break her dear little heart; and I'd rather break my own."
I would not for twenty old women like the one hobbling before us that Faith should come to any harm."
What if a wretched old woman do choose to go to the devil when I thought she was going to heaven: is that any reason why I should quit my dear Faith and go after her?"
If the writer strictly observes the rules above-mentioned, he hath discharged his part; and is then intitled to some faith from his reader, who is indeed guilty of critical infidelity if he disbelieves him.
For want of a portion of such faith, I remember the character of a young lady of quality, which was condemned on the stage for being unnatural, by the unanimous voice of a very large assembly of clerks and apprentices; though it had the previous suffrages of many ladies of the first rank; one of whom, very eminent for her understanding, declared it was the picture of half the young people of her acquaintance.
All--but the certitude immaterial and precious--the certitude of love and faith. He believed the shadow of it had been with him as long as he could remember; that invisible presence had ruled his life.
His obedient thought traced for him the image of an uninterrupted life, the dignity and the advantages of an uninterrupted success; while his rebellious heart beat violently within his breast, as if maddened by the desire of a certitude immaterial and precious--the certitude of love and faith. What of the night within his dwelling if outside he could find the sunshine in which men sow, in which men reap!
Doubt not but that sin Will reign among them, as of thee begot; And therefore was Law given them to evince Thir natural pravitie, by stirring up Sin against Law to fight; that when they see Law can discover sin, but not remove, Save by those shadowie expiations weak, The bloud of Bulls and Goats, they may conclude Some bloud more precious must be paid for Man, Just for unjust, that in such righteousness To them by Faith imputed, they may finde Justification towards God, and peace Of Conscience, which the Law by Ceremonies Cannot appease, nor Man the moral part Perform, and not performing cannot live.
The Law of God exact he shall fulfill Both by obedience and by love, though love Alone fulfill the Law; thy punishment He shall endure by coming in the Flesh To a reproachful life and cursed death, Proclaiming Life to all who shall believe In his redemption, and that his obedience Imputed becomes theirs by Faith, his merits To save them, not thir own, though legal works.
Be sure they will, said th' Angel; but from Heav'n Hee to his own a Comforter will send, The promise of the Father, who shall dwell His Spirit within them, and the Law of Faith Working through love, upon thir hearts shall write, To guide them in all truth, and also arme With spiritual Armour, able to resist SATANS assaults, and quench his fierie darts What Man can do against them, not affraid, Though to the death, against such cruelties With inward consolations recompenc't, And oft supported so as shall amaze Thir proudest persecuters: for the Spirit Powrd first on his Apostles, whom he sends To evangelize the Nations, then on all Baptiz'd, shall them with wondrous gifts endue To speak all Tongues, and do all Miracles, As did thir Lord before them.
To whom thus also th' Angel last repli'd: This having learnt, thou hast attaind the summe Of wisdom; hope no higher, though all the Starrs Thou knewst by name, and all th' ethereal Powers, All secrets of the deep, all Natures works, Or works of God in Heav'n, Air, Earth, or Sea, And all the riches of this World enjoydst, And all the rule, one Empire; onely add Deeds to thy knowledge answerable, add Faith, Add Vertue, Patience, Temperance, add Love, By name to come call'd Charitie, the soul Of all the rest: then wilt thou not be loath To leave this Paradise, but shalt possess A Paradise within thee, happier farr.
He exerted himself, during his sojourn among this simple and well-disposed people, to inculcate, as far as he was able, the gentle and humanizing precepts of the Christian faith
, and to make them acquainted with the leading points of its history; and it speaks highly for the purity and benignity of his heart, that he derived unmixed happiness from the task.