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gurgitations of the old bottles we find in the Eclectic Review and in the Evangelical Magazine, for November, 1838, the substance of which is," These people that seek after the communion of saints will not evangelize," &c. &c. It is true, that this is said of some people called the "Plymouth Brethren" only, and not of all who desire to take the unsectarian position; still we conceive it was really said against the unsectarian position as a whole. As to the party especially complained of, as they do not by any means recognise us as their organ, we are not bound to say anything in vindication of them. If their labours do not extend to the preaching to the world, both at home and abroad, they wretchedly fail of exhibiting the mind of the Lord, whose servants they profess to
be. And if, on the other hand, the fact be (as we rather think those who will take the trouble to enquire will find it), that they do labour in evangelising much more than their accusers, then their lives and labours are the best answer to the calumny brought forward against them; brought forward merely to divert attention from the good old doctrine of the communion of saints, on which we suppose them to be trying to act, as much as upon the requirements to preach Jesus to all men. But we shall say nothing about them; for, be they guilty or be they not guilty, we are fully borne out in saying that the attempt at the communion of saints on the unsectarian principle, in no way whatever interferes with zeal for missionary labour. No one was ever more anxious for it than Jesus himself, as his prayer in the 17th of St. John shews; and why, but "that the world may believe that,' &c. No man was more anxious for the union of saints, on the enlarged basis of separation from the world, faith in Jesus and the fellowship of the Spirit, than Paul; and no one more wrought among the Gentiles in evangelising, that he might gather together out of the world, on these prin
ciples, than Paul. And, in the present day, let those who know poor Ireland say with whom has been the most abundant labour in evangelising? Has it not been with those who either commenced with, or, in the course of their labours, were led into, this same unsectarian position. We do not boast in their labours, neither in them. They ought to have laboured still more; and their labours ought to have been more simply in the Spirit, the result of the simple action of the Spirit of God with them, and less the results of the natural mind than they have. Still, we say, they have laboured more than others; and we believe also, little as the best may be, the Lord has wrought with them more effectually. We would press upon our readers the fact, that there are very many missionaries gone forth from this country into all parts of the world, occupying the unsectarian position, and therefore neglected and despised by all; and we would pray them to be very jealous of accrediting any of the unkind reports which they may hear of such and if they have anything to contribute, let them that walk simply with their God, know that there are those that walk simply likewise with their God, as missionaries who, though they have no society at home for their masters, no platform or pulpit orators, no secretaries and travelling agents, have yet a God and Father in heaven, to whom they look for sustenance and guidance,-whose they are, and whom they serve. hope that, ere long, some arrangement will be made, by which their labours and their claims may be made more generally known, their necessities more efficiently supplied, and the desires of the many in this country to contribute to such fully met.
PIETY AMONG THE GREAT IN
WE read that "not many wise men after the flesh, not many mighty, not
many noble, are called." But as an illustrious lady once said," she blessed God that it was not said, 'not any noble," " SO we may hope that the Lord has some in exalted stations, whom He will keep in the hollow of his hand but while remaining in these stations, such stand peculiarly in need of christian sympathy, and the prayers of the Lord's people.
The following extract from a morning paper, will be read with interest.
Berlin, Nov. 1st." Though the illness of the brother to our King seems to have subsided, as he is seen to take his daily walks in the Thiergarten, yet the prince does not join the bustling circles of the court. This is explained by the turn of mind which this branch of our royal family has taken, both Prince William and his lady having a strong bias to Methodism. Even the aides-de-camps of the prince are pietists with a vengeance. They shudder at hearing the word "damn" uttered in their presence, which must render the profession of soldiers rather painful to them, as swearing is more common in the army than among any other class of society. Such persons, to be consistent, ought to become Quakers or Mennonites; and instead of wearing the sword themselves, to disavow, and disallow the wearing of it in others."
How keen-sighted is the world, in discovering any inconsistency in the conduct of Christians, and how difficult is it to retain the honours and dignities of this world, without bringing disgrace on the religion of the lowly Jesus!
Another illustration of these remarks, connected with the same place, has fallen under our notice in the "Neueste Nachrichten."
Died at Berlin, August 4th, 1823, Charles William Solomon Semler, Knight of several orders, and counsellor of Finance. (König-Geheimer Oberfinanz-rath).
His life, as a servant of the state, lies out of our province: but his
christian course and labours deserve to be made more extensively known.
He was born at Magdeburgh in 1788; his father held a high office in the government: his great grandfather was the celebrated Dr. Semler, of Halle.
His conversion took place rather late in life; after he had attained to those worldly honours and distinctions which afterwards proved to him a means of humiliation of spirit. A change of heart involved mighty difficulties in his case; though the recompense of this self-denial abundantly made up for all his sacrifices. had drunk deep of the pleasures, the honours, and the unbelief of a flattering world, which is powerful in upholding its dominion over the hearts of its captives, and most reluctant to permit their escape. It is often, not without a bleeding heart, not without the very agony of despair, in the conflict, that such victims break their fetters and bitter is the vengeance which the world takes for the escape of those who have thus once delighted to walk in her proud paths. All this Semler abundantly experienced: but standing strong in the strength of the Lord, he overcame; he broke through all the pains, and difficulties, of an entrance into a christian course: he bore all the scorn and reproach; and instead of sinking into misanthropic inactivity, he rather seized every opportunity of carrying his faith into practice, in labouring for the temporal and eternal good of his fellow
The Lord did not allow him to be without opportunities for doing this; and such he joyfully embraced, although taken from his official labours.* The Lord knew how to give him as full employment in disinterested labours of love, as if he had united the most laborious offices of state in his
own person. And though his em
It is not clear whether he voluntarily resigned his situation under government, or whether he was deprived of it.
ployments are names far from inviting or honourable in the ears of the world, -such, indeed, as she would look down upon with contempt, yet this could not deter one who had learned no longer to seek after the highly prized trifles of this world, but to estimate the importance of his engagements by the standard of their bearing upon the eternal interests of man.
To treat in this manner everything with which he had to do-to strive after the introduction of this spirit of Christian faith into every sphere of social and public life-to raise to this standard all his fellow-labourers ;-this was the object of his endeavours; and this, as may well be supposed, often earned him but opposition and scorn, especially as his zeal sometimes led him to forget the real spiritual condition of those who were at work, and to expect that they should see with his eyes, and be able to enter into his own religious experience, not recollecting sufficiently what a different man he himself had once been in these very respects.
His wife was like-minded with himself; and he viewed his children as the richest earthly treasure which God had given him. He never forgot how much he owed to the former.
She was his faithful and heroic helpmeet in the time of his greatest trial. They were united in the tenderest bonds of affection, till the Lord separated them by death. She had been so much overdone with attending on him during his illness, that her own life was in danger; and it was only four days after the birth of his youngest child, that his useful career was cut short. To conceal this event from her for a while, was the painful task of her mother and two grown up daughters. She received the intelligence (which a dream at the time of his death had prepared her for) with Christian resignation. "I am in the Lord's hands: be it to me according to his holy will," was her exclamation, after a flood of tears had given vent to her feelings.
PRESENT STATE OF ROMANISM IN CHINA PERSECUTION OF THE NATIVE CONVERTS.
THROUGH the persevering efforts of the Jesuits and other missionaries of the Romish faith, Popery was introduced into China in the sixteenth century. It had the prospect at one time of becoming the popular religion of the empire: but the disputes and intrigues of the priests alarmed the government, and edicts were issued for its extermination." It numbers more than 200,000 adherents who are under the ecclesiastical direction and instruction of six bishops and two coadjutors, twenty-three missionaries and eighty native agents. The expense of the Catholic missions is more than £40,000 per annum, and is defrayed by European liberality. Priests are still surreptitiously introduced within the walls, and find their way to the interior."
Our readers will see by the following extract from the Asiatic Journal for December, that fierce persecution awaits the native converts." The chefoo of Shunteen reports as follows:-'I have received a despatch from the governor, directing the chehëen of Leangheang, to forward the offender, Kew Shanlin, who is a follower of the religion of the Lord of heaven (Roman Catholic), and also the books of his doctrine (classics), which have been seized, to my office. I examined him myself, and his evidence is as follows:--
"I am a native of Yoyang-hëen, in the province of Shanse. In my youth, I came with my father and mother to live at Peking. The belief and practice of the religion of the Lord of heaven was transmitted to me from my father and grandfather. The books have been examined, and I wish voluntarily to confess my crime; but I do not wish to abandon my religion.'
"Hunta gave his evidence as follows: I am a man of the imperial
kindred, under the bordered red banner. I am the nephew of Too-see, who has been apprehended and delivered over to the board. The practice of the religion of the Lord of heaven was transmitted to me from his deceased father. The books, paintings, and images belong to the uncaught Wang-tung, and to Wangurh, who has been caught and delivered over to the board. I now make known my wish to quit the (Christian) sect.' I, your Majesty's servant, immediately ordered the said criminal to step over the cross and images in open court: and that, as a proof of his repentance and reform, he should give a voluntary bond (not again to join the Christian religion).
"Too-se, alias Too Shingah, having been brought before the courts for practising the religion of the Lord of heaven, repented, reformed, and was pardoned. Afterwards, he again worshipped the cross, paintings, and images, and with his son, Wan-kwang, chanted prayers and hymns: it is evident, therefore, from his whole conduct, that he has not really reformed. I order that Too-se and Wan-kwang be deprived of their red girdle, their names be erased from the genealogical table of our clan, and themselves be sent to E-le, and subjected to the lowest degree of slavery.
66 6 Hereafter, when offenders practising the religion are taken, if, in order to obtain forgiveness of their crime, they first profess to repent and reform, and afterwards follow the worship, their crime is to be punished according to the original law, whether they trample on the cross in open court or not; their crime is not to be forgiven by any exertion of benevolence: these measures will operate as a warning to the traitorous and crafty, who put their trust in wickedness.""
MR. CRAIK AND THE BRISTOL YOUNG MEN'S SOCIETY. WE are glad to find that this estimable minister of the Gospel has had
courage to step forward, and at the risk of much personal opprobrium, to state in print his reasons for refusing his countenance to the above association. After pointing out the broad line of distinction which exists between those who belong to the world, and those who belong to Christ, he goes on to say:
"Let me now proceed to apply to the matter in hand, the principles which have been just exhibited from the Word of God. The Bristol Young Men's Society' has been established for the express purpose of forming a bond of religious fellowship common to the world and the Church. not an association merely for mental improvement, or literary cultivation, but its object is avowedly of a higher character. Let the following extract from the Prospectus be examined in the light of Scripture, and then let any candid reader say whether the character of the union, therein contemplated, be union in the truth.
"Strict moral character, and the profession of no opinions contrary to revealed truth, are the only qualifications necessary for membership; with this limitation, it embraces all, of every denomination, and of every class of society, desirous to banish from its brotherhood all sectarian and party feeling, and to promote amongst the followers of the Lamb a holy determination SO to live as to endeavour to secure the greatest amount of good to themselves, and, likewise, to stimulate each other to press forward in the pursuit of whatsoever things are lovely and of good report, that they may
be all in one;' forgetting their minor differences, may rally round the common standard of the Cross, present a firm and unbroken phalanx, and concentrate all their energies against the common foe.'
"The following observations naturally arise out of examining the above
"(1) The object of the Society is
professedly for religious union. Its members are to compose 66 a brotherhood;" and, as "followers of the Lamb," to seek "that they may be all one."
'(2) Such an union can only be expected to take place among those who believe in Christ. To expect that those who are "in the flesh" and those who are "in the Spirit," should thus unite together, is at variance with the whole train of the New Testament. Yet
"(3) The requisite for membership is so contrived as to embrace all who are strictly moral, whatever opinions they may entertain respecting the truth. They are not required to profess any opinions at all, and if they make no profession of any thing contrary to revealed truth, they may be admitted within the pale of this association.
"(4) The godly young men in the Society may thus be mixed up with those who know not God; and a large majority of the members may consist of the following descriptions of character:-Steady, moral young men, who have no fixed opinions at all about religion; others of a thoughtful disposition, inclined to infidelity; and those who, in the pride of their hearts, reject revelation, but do not reckon it expedient to avow their sentiments. At any rate, I ask my brethren in the ministry, who have given to this unscriptural association the sanction of their names, whether there be any thing in the terms of membership calculated to prevent such a result? May it not be the case that, with the exception of the presidents, the whole body may consist of the unconverted?
"(5) In order to reception into religious association, the New Testament authorises us to require a positive confession of Christ: this Society proposes to receive into its brotherhood those who make no profession at all. Is not this nothing less than presuming to be wiser than God, and virtually denying the authority of His
Word? Is not this to admit the principle that the end sanctifies the means, and to do evil that good may come ?
"(6) Can it be profitable for young believers to meet together, for religious intercourse, with those who know not the things of the Spirit of God? Can those, who have obeyed from the heart the word of the Gospel, listen with salisfaction to essays composed, on the subject of religion, by those who are yet in the blindness and ignorance of their natural state? The first thing the Gospel requires from sinners is that they repent and believe, and, as long as a man continues impenitent and unbelieving, it pronounces him to be in a state of spiritual darkness; but this Society, by encouraging such persons to speculate about Christianity, fosters the pride of the natural heart, satisfies the self-righteousness of the mere moralist, and affords a resting-place to the undecided."
With these observations we fully coincide. Nothing can be more fallacious than the commonly received maxim, that it is necessary to form such associations in order to benefit the world. It is not by compromising their principles, that Christians may hope to shine as lights in the world, nor is it by confounding the distinctions between the regenerate and the unregenerate, that believers will impress on the thoughtless the indispensable truth, that "except a man be born again he cannot see the kingdom of God."
MR. RHENIUS AND THE TINNEVELLY MISSION.
A letter from the Rev. J. J. Muller, dated Palamcottah, June 7th, in reporting the death of the Rev. C. J. Rhenius, on the 5th June, states that it was caused by apoplexy, partly owing to the heat, which affected him more than at any former period during the twenty-four years he had been in India. He has left a widow and nine children. "Perhaps in no in