Epistles of Faith
William Huntington (1745-1813)TO MRS B.
I RECEIVED the epistle of my daughter, and, as far as I am skilled in anatomy or in physiognomy, the outward man decays, but the inward man is renewed, his heart seems happy, and his countenance healthy; winter frosts and east winds have no effect upon charity, the bond of all perfectness; nor will faith be confined at home, or be deterred from venturing abroad because of the cold. Faith, hope, and love can go abroad when we are confined at home, and find access within the veil when we are detained within the curtains; and as to the old man his bounds are circumscribed, his parole is between the two thrones; he cannot gain the throne of our renewed affections within, nor draw near the throne of grace above. Grace shall reign in the heart, and the Saviour is holy, harmless, separate from sin and sinners, and will never suffer the spawn of the old man to come near him. A wonder and a new thing it is that a woman shall compass a man," Jeremiah xxxi. 22; but here is a woman that has compassed three men; her outward man decays, her old man still plagues her, her inward man is renewed day by day, and her mediator still mediates for her, who is the man Christ Jesus. A glorious reward is before us, when the fight and the race are finished; an eternal weight of glory follows upon our light afflictions, which are but momentary; and the Lord, who in our nature is part of the children's flesh and blood, has got possession of the inheritance, and secures it and insures it to all the seed. And he has already admitted our hearts and our hopes, faith and affections, thoughts and desires, prayers and praise, to ascend and descend, go in and out already and find pasture; which serves to shew us that the door is not shut, that the way is cast up, the obstacles are removed, and the cloud of our transgressions blotted out; and as thy soul liveth there is but a step between us and everlasting glory. If you could know how I have explored the invisible regions of bliss, fancied and imagined the glorious orders of beings there, their songs, appearance, felicity, employments, delights, shining robes, sparkling crowns, palms, shouts, trumps, exultations, thrones and kingdoms; their fountains of life, rivers of pleasure, and above all the beauty, the perfection of beauty, and .he beauty of holiness, I mean the Sovereign Ruler and glorious King of the place! There is nothing, girl, but the wail between that country and this. Farewell; my love to the Doctor.
W. H. S. S.