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will never get an army to rise in the "valley of dry bones" by digging a grave and lying down there with them; what is wanted there is a live prophet, not a dead one-a prophet who cannot do else than cry, Come, O breath and breathe upon these slain." The apostles themselves would never have extended the Redeemer's kingdom if it had not been for their earnestness; when men looked at them they saw men who were all on fire, and they in turn became stirred up to enquire what this strange thing was that had so inspired them, and forasmuch as earnestness is contagious they felt the contagion. A heart on fire is sure to make itself felt; let it burn on, and it must produce a thaw in hearts somewhere. It is said that Archimedes consumed the enemies of Syracuse by a great sun-glass; as the ships came up the harbour he concentrated the rays of the sun upon them; the sails caught fire, the masts fell, and the vessels sunk. We must burn our way into those who are indifferent; by a holy ardour we must take them by storm. Press all your energy into this work; heap all your zeal upon this altar; for if zeal be lacking all else will go for nought; but let that burn brightly, and the effort cannot, shall not, fail. History shows that in every age earnestness has succeeded, and to the end it shall be the same.
To these things add prayer and faith; all plans, all efforts will go for nothing without earnest, persevering prayer. It is not ours to touch the sinner's heart, the Master alone can do that; but "Ask and ye shall receive." Write that over every effort; inscribe that against the name of every unawakened sinner. "Bring him to me," says the Saviour, "bring him hither to me." All you can do for some men is to pray for them. When Peter was in prison the disciples did not try to go and talk to him through the bars; no, they went to the Lord, asked him to open the door, and he opened it. Edward Payson could do little else than pray, but his prayers brought hundreds to the Saviour. Hobart, the American engine-driver, writes the names of his unconverted acquaintances on a slip of paper, brings it to the throne, and prays over it till he hears that they are saved, when he scratches their names out again; and he says, "It is marvellous how often the Lord helps him to put in those blessed blotches." Even Jesus did not attempt this work without prayer, how much less shall we. To your knees, brethren, to your knees, if you would lay hold of careless hearers!
Finally, have faith. Believe that you will do it; never give up. Remember you labour for that which will glorify the Saviour, and have every reason to rest assured that God will crown your efforts "for Jesus' sake."
China's Cry and China's Need.
BY THOMAS P. HARVEY.
"Non audivi tantum."
OME ideas of places and people far from us are not unfrequently
as our information is often but fragmentary, and from men of widely
different opinions; so that false notions and confused ideas on our part are the result. And not more so of other countries than China. True, books have been written-we might almost say without numberbut very often by men who have never seen the country; and lectures given, but principally by men who have kept to the free ports on the coast. Yet, from the many authors who have viewed this vast subject, from as many different stand-points, it is difficult to deduce the truth. On the one hand, we are told with the greatest assurance "that China does not want the gospel." An equally trustworthy authority as coolly says that "China is holding out its arms for it, and that the people invite us to plant the standard of the Cross on every hill and in every valley throughout the land." One diplomatist, deceived by the plausible tone of the deceptive Government, tells us "we need to be patient with the Chinese, and use conciliatory measures, and that they will ultimately yield to our demands." Another diplomatist, representing the same court, asserts that the only thing to make the Chinaman give way is the "iron-clad with its infants." Again, a good brother missionary will write home to say, that to go away from the free ports into the interior is sheer madness. Another brother, more sanguine and experimental than the former, in glowing words tells us, after travelling in the interior of the country, how peaceably the people behave, and what an "open door" there is for the gospel. Merchants declare that missionaries are at the root of all the troubles in China in connection with the foreigners. Whereas, on the other hand, it is an easy thing for us to show that the foreign trade with China, in some respects, is becoming the very death of the native population-I refer to the sale of that most fearful drug found in Satan's pharmacopoeia, opium.
I make no pretensions to "pen-wielding," but a desire to lay a few plain facts, the result of my experience during the few years I laboured in China in connection with the China Inland Mission, before the Lord's people, is my apology for writing.
The subject, China and the Chinese is a vast one. Out of the many different stand-points from which it may be viewed, the ethical, perhaps, belongs more to us than any other. We seek to be plain in dealing with the question in hand, and to this end shall be curt..
Every effect has its cause. That China cries out in anguish is a lamentable fact. What, then, are the causes of its cry.
DIRECT CAUSES. I. The vast system of injustice and tyranny practised by its rulers.
II. The filth and pollution of its towns and cities, and the neglected state of the country.
III. The doctrines and truths inculcated by the priests of Buddha and Tao.
INDIRECT CAUSES. I. Customs concerning women.
II. Idolatry and the rebellions.
The above-mentioned by no means include all the causes of China's cry, but they will be sufficient to show the source of much of its
We say, then, that "the vast system of injustice and tyranny' incessantly practised upon the people by the rulers is the first, and, we
believe, the chief cause. "System," because it extends throughout the land with scarcely an exception, having its root in the "great father of the people," "the son of heaven," the Emperor; and its tributary branches in the lesser rulers. It is a common saying amongst the people that "big fish eat little fish, little fish eat shrimps, and shrimps eat one another." This principle, carried out in all its woful detail, constitutes what we here call "system." If ever the cry of the oppressed entered into the ears of the God of the whole earth, certainly it has when arising from innocent sufferers incarcerated in a Chinese ya-men. A ya-men! And what is a ya-men? Why, a terror to all unofficially associated with it. An earthly department of hell. As well as being the residence of the mandarin (magistrate), it swarms with cunning, cowardly men, whose business it is to carry out the wicked designs of their tyrannical master, the mandarin, so as to enrich both themselves and him, at the expense and suffering of the people. Our Lord's "den of thieves" and Gavazzi's "nest of vipers are fit descriptions of a Chinese ya-men. To the ear of an Englishman, who has been accustomed from his birth to breathe in an atmosphere of truth and justice, all this sounds strange. Doubtless there are men to be found in our island-home who desire to rule for the benefit of their country, and who ardently long for the welfare of the people; but not so in China. An altogether different motive possesses the Chinaman as he seeks an opulent position in the Government. The country may go to ruin, and the people to starvation, but what cares he so long as his own nest is well feathered; and in proportion to the extent in which his ambition is gratified do the people suffer. Thus much for the paternal love and affection which the (rulers) "fathers" of China exercise towards their own "children" (the people).
Is this the language of an impartial judge? I appeal to those who have been into the interior of China, and have had opportunities of knowing what things are enacted at the ya-mens, whether what has been said is not, if anything, under rather than overrated. Νο need that you should go to China, you need but read the Pekin Gazette, published in Pekin daily, containing court news, to know the general conduct of Chinese rulers; and the comparatively few cases which you see recorded there, are those of persons who have sufficient interest or means to gain the ear and sympathies of some great official, and bribe him to present a memorial to the throne, begging for justice; whilst the thousands of people who by reason of poverty are unable to go to this extent are compelled to suffer, and often to die in obscurity, the victims of extortion, injustice, and tyranny. Take a couple of cases which I happen to have at hand, from the Pekin Gazette of 23rd of November, 1872. Tsung-chêng reports the two following appeal cases :
Case 1st." Appellant's statement: My name is Chu-Ching-hêng. I live at Nan-yang, prefecture Ho-nan, and get my living by keeping a wine shop. My father having been asked by an old friend, Chiaochen-ho, to draw up a bill of sale of some land, was taking a glass of wine with him in the shop when a quarrel commenced between him and a man called Tan-te-Kwei, about some gambling debts. My father tried to make peace between them, and succeeded in doing so for the
time being; but the next day Tan-te-Kwei met Chiao-chên-ho and killed him. His friends, however, charged us with the murder, and by bribing the coroner (district magistrate) got him to report that Chiaochên-ho had been poisoned, in consequence of which my father was put in prison. While there he was subject to all sorts of ill-treatment in order to get money out of him. He was also so cruelly beaten in order to extort a confession of guilt from him, that he died in consequence. I and my brother then appealed to the prefect (magistrate of a department), criminal judge and lieutenant-governor, and orders were sent to the district magistrate to investigate the case; but the Chiao family, by the free use of money, managed to get my brothers flogged and imprisoned. Thus, driven to desperation, I have come to the capital to lay my complaint at the foot of the throne."
Case 2nd." A Shantung man (Province in the north), named Howyung-pao, complains that his cousin How-lan, was murdered by Wang-lihwan, under the following circumstances:-His cousin married a Miss Wu, but the match was by no means a happy one. On the morning of the 7th June last he was found dead, and at first it was supposed that he had committed suicide by hanging. His body, however, exhibited no mark that would justify such a supposition. It was also observed that his wife's sleeves were smeared with blood, and on further examination a pair of white mourning shoes was found concealed on his person. These facts showed clearly enough that there had been foul play, and she then confessed that Wang-li-hwan and his accomplices had climbed in over a wall and throttled the unfortunate How-lan. The case was at once reported to the district magistrate, and an inquest was held on the body, when it was decided that death had been caused by throttling. But by a free use of bribery Wang-li-hwan's uncle managed to get the evidence altered, and thus concealed the real facts of the case from the district magistrate. Then, fearing an appeal would be made to one of the high officials, he bribed the ya-men underlings to put complainant's father, two brothers, and one of his near relatives in prison. There they were severely beaten with a view to force them to say that the case was one of suicide, and not of murder, and eventually all four died in consequence of the ill-usage to which they were subjected. Complainant's aunt appealed to the criminal judge, and a deputy was appointed to try the case in conjunction with the local magistrate, but when she appeared in court she too was seized and given into the custody of the female warder. Unable to stand this kind of treatment any longer, complainant has come to Pekin to appeal to the throne.
Money was the only thing; to obtain which, justice was sold, the innocent were put to death, and the guilty rich upheld. And this is a fair specimen of the kind of rule which Chinese mandarins administer. Take another case, which came under my own notice. A small farmer living in King-hsien (a small city which I have visited with the Scriptures) refused to accede to the unjust demands of the petty magistrate and pay the land taxes twice. The question was brought to the provincial city of Ang-hüoi (in which province King-hsien is situated), Ang-King. Here the petty official falls in with an old acquaintance, who has high rank and great power. Upon understanding the nature of the case in
hand, he induced the governor of the province to put the farmer into prison. Into prison he was thrown. A Chinese prison strongly reminds us of the dungeon into which the prophet Jeremiah was cast. In prison, the farmer was suspended from the roof in chains, the balls of his toes resting on the ground. In this position, he was beaten and starved, and promised release, by paying the unjust tax, a large sum of money besides, and publicly acknowledging his wrong in thus appealing. During this time our native helper in the Lord's work there, hearing of the case, found upon enquiry that it was a neighbour of his father's home. Desirous of showing kindness to his friend in trouble, he brought him some food, whereupon he was cast into prison. Other friends turned up and were dealt with in a similar
There was a case of a man in Nankin, whilst I was there, who for a small offence was cast into prison and was fearfully treated. He was afterwards sent to his ruined home, in a dying state, by the mandarin, lest dying in the ya-men the burial expenses would fall upon him.
When the terrible flood visited the north of China in 1871, large quantities of rice, money, and other materials were collected for the people, thousands of whom were houseless, and from the intense cold of a northern winter were dying in great numbers. An amount of this suffering was in a great measure due to the negligence of the mandarins, who were known to have appropriated to their own use, much of what was sent for these poor, wretched, starving people. The chief mandarin engaged in the management of this concern, very quietly requested that relief should be sent in money and not in kind-for a very obvious reason. Many more cases of rascality on the part of these rulers might be given, but two others shall suffice. For these we again quote the Pekin Gazette of Dec. 13, 1871:-"“ A Shantung man named Tsai-chi-fang, complains that his father was waylaid, robbed, and murdered on the evening of the 12th November, 1869. His father had been to town selling a quantity of calico, and was returning home with the money when the murderers met him. Notice of the murder was sent to the district magistrate and the murderers were apprehended. They confessed their guilt, but the magistrate, in order to screen himself from the blame of allowing such a serious crime to take place in his district, kept the culprits in prison, but never reported the case to the higher authorities. Complainant has appealed to the prefect (departmental magistrate) and criminal judge, but neither would investigate his case." Case No. 2. "A Hunan undergraduate named Li-shang-lin and others send a person to the Censorate (at Pekin Court) with a petition stating that the district magistrate of Yung-hsing has arbitrarily raised the value of the Tael (ordinarily worth 6s. 8d. or 7s.) in order to secure a squeeze for himself. In other respects also he has acted tyrannically. He has imprisoned numbers of innocent persons. Complainants have appealed to the Viceroy and others. A deputy was sent to investigate the matter, but his investigation was a mere farce, complainant obtained no redress."
"The people," once said a mandarin, "are a sponge, which we must all squeeze. High Mandarins squeeze those who squeeze the people.