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commended and encouraged him; and congregation, is doing good. The besoon the necessary aid was secured. haviour and external appearance of the In conjunction with one or two others children, and, indeed, of the entire whom he enlisted in the cause, he com- neighbourhood, are greatly improved ; menced operations. The materials were swearing, gambling, sabbath profanaof course rough and unruly, for no kind tion, intemperance, and the like, are far hand had ever applied the chisel to less frequent than formerly. What a remove any of the protuberances. That blessing, even in a temporal point of which would have deterred many was an view, does the introduction of the gospel additional motive for him to act ; for he into that place appear! Generations yet himself had been a rough and ungovern- unborn will call him blessed who had able lad. There was a prospect of use mercy on them in their low estate ! fulness, though a remote one, and, en 1- "Could they have a school-room incouraged by this, the young men went stead of the cottage, much more good on, the originator becoming the super- would doubtless be done both in the intendent of the station, and taking with school and congregativn; for there can him each sabbath one or more to aid him be no additions to either until a larger both in teaching, and preaching the place of meeting be obtained. Through word. He did not meet with all the the preaching of these brethren, too, encouragement he might have expected; much good has been effected. Several some of the people insulted and annoyed are hopefully converted to God; eight him and his fellow labourers greatly. have been baptized on a profession of On one occasion, on a dark night, they faith and received into Christian fellowwere stoned for some time, but happily ship by a neighbouring church, and escaped without much injury. Although there is a prospect of further additions a stone struck him, this
ere long A large district in that of Jesus Christ was only the more de- locality is regularly furnished with termined to persevere: ignorance of God tracts, which in most cases are grateand of his word was the cause of that fully received. What will be the ultiopposition which, therefore, served to mate issue of these “ works of faith and deepen his impression of their claims, labours of love,” we cannot conjecture ; and to bring to light fresh materials for but surely enough has been realized to conquest. But that was not all. Chris- compel us to say to these servants of the tian friends blamed him. Elder bre- Lord, Thank God and take courage. thren thought him forward, and even Are there not young men in most of presumptuous, and predicted the certain our churches who might " go and do failure of his scheme; yet, constrained likewise ?” Dear brethren, this sketch by the love of Christ, and of precious is written in the hope that some of you souls for whom Christ died, he went on, will be induced by it to go forth in the notwithstanding every opposition. name of the Lord to rescue your
The result of two years' self-deny- creatures from ruin! Have compassion ing labour is gratifying. In the school on the multitudes within your reach there are about ninety children and who perish every year " for lack of young persons in regular attendance, knowledge,”
- that knowledge which many of whom are able to read well, you possess! The humble reception of and some to write a little. They have the truths of the gospel has made you established a small loan library, which, happy, and it would make them happy though it is by no means adequate to likewise; but how shall they believe in the growing desire of the school and Him of whom they have not heard, and
how shall they hear without a preacher? of them that are ready to perish.” Serve Young and old appeal to your sympa- the Lord with humility, zeal, and prayer. thies. By their miseries, dangers, and “Ye are not your own, for ye are prospects they call for help. They say, bought with a price—and oh, what a in language which cannot be mistaken, price !)-therefore glorify God with your " that the soul be without knowledge body and your spirit, which are God's." it is not good.” Oh, coret "the blessing Swanwick.
PRIZE PAINTINGS OF OUR LORD'S BAPTISM.
The paintings now placed in the large Historical accuracy, or conformity of room near Hyde Park Corner, recently the representation to the actual scene, occupied by the Chinese Exhibition, has been aimed at in some degree by all relate to a subject in which our readers the artists, but by some with greater feel so much interest that it will afford determination and success than by pleasure to many of them, doubtless, to others. Some have indeed so far done be furnished with some account of the homage to custom as to introduce the collection. It will be remembered that slender cross which the pictorial repreahout two years ago, Mr. Bell of South sentations of past centuries have made Shields, desiring to call public attention John the Baptist's distinctive sign; some to scriptural views of baptism, offered a have introduced emblematical figures; prize of one thousand pounds to the many have placed on the banks artist, British or foreign, who should of the river persons who afterwards produce within a given time the best became prominent in the gospel history, oil painting of the immersion of our as well as some of the Saviour's family Lord in the river Jordan. It was re- connexions: among the former the two quired that the size of the work should sisters of Lazarus, and two or three of he not less than twelve feet by ten, and the apostles are apparently the favorites. not greater than fifteen feet by twelve, The greater number exhibit a visible dove. and that the two principal figures In three of the pictures our Lord and should be at least as large as life. In the administrator of the ordinance are consequence of this liberal offer, seve- without any attendants, which was ral fine pictures have been sent in; the probably the fact. Nothing in scripture eligible premises already mentioned have indicates that there were spectators, or been hired for their reception; and that the descent of the Holy Ghost they are now open to the inspection which John attested had been witnessed of the public.
by others. This view of the case is It is not the intention of this paper defended by Mr. Fisk, one of the artists, to offer any criticisms on these paint- who says, “ The baptist and the Saviour ings as works of art, or even to intimate are represented in the picture as unan opinion respecting their respective accompanied—a view of the subject conmerits; but to give such a description firmed by able commentators, and apas may induce persons who have oppor- parently by scripture itself, since the tunity to visit the exhibition to avail baptist speaks (to those sent unto him) themselves of it, and enable friends at a of Christ as one 'whom they know not;' distance to form some idea of its general yet if the miraculous evidences had been character.
publicy given, they surely must have
known him, or a second miracle inust came to be baptized by John, as more have been wrought, closing the eyes and clearly to indicate retirement; he is also ears of all present except John himself." in the attitude natural to prayer ; the In describing his painting, this gentle hands are not crossed on his bosom, as man adds, “ The Saviour is represented that attitude is catholic and not Jewish, with the smooth unfurrowed face of -is feminine and not belonging to man, youth, as an indication that his ministry who, according to ancient tradition, in is only now commenced, and that the prayer had their hands more extended sorrows and sufferings by which after- towards heaven. John is looking up in wards ‘his visage was so marred more astonishment, to bear witness to the than any man, and his form more than opening of the heavens, the descent of the sons of men 'had not yet begun. An the Holy Ghost in the shape of a dove. attempt has also been made by the dis- and hearing the voice which proclaimed position of the figure of the Saviour and Christ the Son of God, in whom He was that of the baptist to elevate the former well pleased." both in stature and mental superiority Our Lord and John are represented as as much as possible, thereby to give an nearly naked in both these pictures, and idea of the superior position that Jesus in several others. This we regret, espeChrist had at that moment in prayerful cially as these two have very high claims dignity taken upon himself. On the to admiration; though, in the former the opposite bank of the river is introduced beautiful figure of the Saviour is, in our a halt of a party of Bedouin Arabs, view, too young and too feminine, and thereby to mark the locale of the pic- in the latter the triangular representature. They are a wandering and distant tion of Deity at the top of the painting flock, who, though a long way off,' are is in our opinion objectionable. to be brought to the fold of the true The want of becoming dress is almost Shepherd.' On the foreground a serpent the only deduction from the excellence is supposed to represent 'that old ser of the picture of Frank Howard. The pent, the devil,' fleeing from the face faces of our Lord and his mother strike of Christ, who at this time must be con us as remarkably beautiful, though persidered as having commenced his holy haps all the countenances are rather too mission. The scenery is in accordance English. The painter, describing his with descriptions the artist has been design, says, “Out of the clouds of night obligingly favoured with by eastern that are passing away before the dawn, travellers, also in tint, &c., &c., and the of the new day opening upon the world, situation of the mountains of Moab, * The great and glorious day of our Lord,' which form the extreme distance."
* The day spring from on high that hath visited us," Our Lord and his harbinger are also the Spirit of God descends upon Jesus alone in the production of Augustine Christ, to testify his mission as 'that Aglio, who says, “The picture is in- light that cometh into the world to be tended to represent when our Saviour, a light to all people.' Andrew the after being baptized by John, walked fisherman, one of the disciples of John out of Jordan and subsequently retired the Baptist, and afterwards one of the into the wilderness, according to the apostles of Jesus Christ, is represented scriptures, and particularly Mark i. 12, covering his head, the action of obeisance * And immediately the Spirit driveth or adoration in the east. “Any man him into the wilderness. Ie' is repre praying or prophesying having his head gented walking out of the river on an covered dishonoureth his head,' 1 Cor. ii. opposite side from where the people 3. It was Andrew that called Peter,
saying, 'Come, for we have found the site side of the picture, is looking upMessias.' John, the son of Zebedee, wards ; behind the blaok man is Simon also a disciple of the baptist, and after the Canaanite; in the foreground sits a wards the apostle whom Jesus loved, Scribe with his wife and children ; above holds the garments of Christ ; Zebedee, him, leaning on a child, is Mary the his father, whom there is every reason mother of James; in the corner of the to believe to have been a disciple of the picture is Philip with the Saviour's baptist, veils his eyes from the splendour clothes ; the old man near the Pharisee of the glory and gazes on the scene with is Joseph of Arimathea ; in the distance astonishment. The Virgin Mary, to is a toll-house, with figures fording the whom this manifestation was but the river." corroboration of the annunciation of the Edward Robertson, who has also angel, “That holy thing that shall be clothed the Saviour appropriately, deborn of thee shall be called the Son of scribes his performance thus :-"To the God,' Luke i. 35. Martha, and her sister extreme left of the picture is Joseph of Mary, and Lazarus, and the soldier, Arimathea, 'a rich man, who was also afterwards distinguished as the good one of his disciples. Next to him, Mary centurion, look on with various degrees the sister of Lazarus, pointing to the of interest and excitement, while Zach- Saviour or to the marvellous event, arias, the father of John the Baptist, speaking to her sister Martha. Next to bursts into a hallelujah of praise of the Mary, a black slave, who may be supDeity, of whom he had been so long a posed to belong to Joseph of Arimathea. servant in the temple, at this consum- The slave'expresses his surprise with a demation of his son's mission as the fore- gree of stupor which, perhaps, by a kind runner of the Saviour of the world. For of prejudice we attach to that race. the character of the scenery on this Next is John the evangelist, “the beloved part of the banks of the Jordan the disciple, in red. While he expresses artist is indebted to the sketches and surprise, his look, unlike that of the information of D. Roberts, Esq., R.A.". black, is, like Joseph of Arimathea, in
In H. B. Ziegler's picture the costume telligent and mild. Next, to the right, of the principal persons is excellent. and a contrast to the former, is the He observes, “ This picture has been eager and sanguine Peter, with both arranged purposely to avoid anything hands raised. Under him is St. Matthew, figurative or emblematical ; the dove is who having, or being supposed to have not introduced ; the ray of light is in- witnessed the event, is directly recordtended as emanating from it in its ing it. Some of these individuals may descent. The point of time chosen is or may not have been present; for immediately after the immersion, when although the express act of 'calling' the Saviour has risen from the water them was an after act, we have no conand John is uttering the last words of clusive evidence that they could not administration. On the right hand of have been present; on the contrary, the Saviour are seen Peter and John ; there is some evidence that John the in the back-ground, intercepted by the evangelist was first a disciple of John ray of light, is the mother of Jesus ; in the Baptist, and Peter being a fisherthe group immediately above St. John, man, would naturally be often upon are St. Andrew and Nicodemus ; in the and near the river. However that be, a fore-ground, by the river, is Mary, look- picture of this kind is always more ing down on the Saviour ; her sister interesting when the painter can introMartha, next the Pharisee on the oppo- duce the scripture characters, and that
naturally. Behind is a disciple of John sacred spot; on all other sides the the Baptist arranging the tents. These water, shut in by steep rocks fourteen tents have been introduced as a part of feet in height, is inaccessible, and prethe Jewish economy or system, which it cludes the introduction of figures ; the is believed was never wholly relinquished water, muddy through the rapidity of even when they dwelt in cities. The the current, does not reflect clearly. In artist introduces the two tents as natural the centre of the picture, Christ rising and probable, and Joseph of Arimathea from the water, praying, beholds the with a change of raiment for the Saviour. descent of the Holy Ghost, and St. The palm-trees are introduced as indica- John's countenance is expressive of entive of the country,—the rock and hills thusiasm, tempered by awe, while his somewhat bold and wild. The lamb is bending attitude illustrates the line of typical, introduced to give a direction to Milton, the spectator's thoughts. We come now 'I saw the prophet do him reverence.' to principal figures, and the principal His raiment, camel's hair and a leathern part of the picture. All this the artist girdle, purple and fine linen were not has endeavoured to depict as literally worn by him; though a coloured garas possible, according to scripture and ment might add to the picturesque the quotation from Milton. To the de-grouping of the figures, the artist would scending light he has endeavoured to not avail himself, to please the eye, of give something supernatural by the what would be incorrect ; so also with crossing cloud, employing the clouds to regard to the omission of the staff, that look something that could not be an being a Roman catholic received manner ordinary descending light. This assists of representing St. John. It is to be materially to give one of Titian's great remembered the act of immersion was principles ; it further assists in giving completed before the appearance of the * value' to the principal figures, which, dove. The other figures represent the from being necessarily sunk so much, persons present at the time of Jesus' require all such assistance. John is in baptism, either for the purpose of being the attitude of reverence. Our Saviour themselves baptized, or drawn thither is in the attitude of prayer, his head and by curiosity; in the fore-ground is a one hand raised, his other hand raises his figure holding Christ's outer garment; drapery as he proceeds out of the water. the three others on the right express The place of the dove is held to be very belief, astonishment, and awe, while important as an unanswerable testimony behind, a young Sadducee and some to the Trinity. Our Saviour may be elders are in active discussion ; on the supposed to be saying, “I come to do left are supposed to be Elizabeth and thy will, O God.''
Mary, and a younger female, a Roman The object of L. B. Sebbers, in his soldier and two Pharisees; the two painting, he tells us, “has been to adhere other figures, having been baptizcd, are strictly to the actual, and to a true robing themselves." representation of the sacred event : for Robert Robinson of Cambridge, in this reason has he chosen the exact spot baptizing, was accustomed to cause the which tradition and general belief point candidate to bend forwards instead of out as that where the Israelites crossed backwards, as is usual among us. One the Jordan, and where also our Saviour of the artists, Mr. Wood, has attempted was baptized. Two miles from the the representation of this mode. He mouth of the Jordan, at a bend of the says
, “ The point of time chosen in the river shaded with willows, is found the picture is immediately after John had