Imágenes de páginas

oublic recoge at laskip


ups par public

recobrive a walterMr

In the language of Prince Menschikoff, “ there is nothing new at Sebastopol.” The allies, indeed, can do nothing during the winter but maintain their position, and, as the weather permits, gradually advance Cheir works. They are now very close to the town, and their policy seems to be to prepare for å tremendous capnonade and bombardment, and then to carry it by assault. The most painful part of the story is the proved incapacity of our administradon. It is heart-rending to think that the utter incompetency of the war administraCion in England has destroyed more soldiers than the guns of the Russians. Those connexions of the aristocracy who crowd three or four independent war departments, and their titled superiors in the ministry, are all alike unacquainted with business, mere men of the desk and routine, of the opera and the turf; and such is their management, or rather mismanagement, that nothing is foreseen which every man of business habits would foresee; that urgent clamours come home for good clothing and shelter, for nurses, doctors, and hospitals,-and then when at, any cost whole cargoes are sent off, the ships are wrecked for want of the commonest prudence, and the ports crowded with all our poor shivering, dying soldiers wants but seven miles off, while they cannot get their cargoes landed, and what is landed lies spoiling on the shore. There is no one at home competent to provide supplies, no one when they arrive there too late to arrange for getting them to the camp. We might fill pages with details of the most inexcusable blundering,- blundering result. ing in the homicide of thousands of our brave fellows, and all due to our aristocratical system pervading, as it does, the army and the navy, and its management at home. At the time we write, the news is announced that Lord John Russell has retired from the ministry. Whether his retirement arises, as it probably does, from differences with his colleagues on the conduct of the war, will be known to our readers before this reaches them.

At one time it was thought there was some prospect of peace, and that Russia had accepted the allied interpretation of the “ four points." These hopes, we are sorry to say, are nearly gone,- sorry, did we say, we might change the word to thankful,-since we feel quite certain that Russia was merely plotting to stop the vigour of our measures, and then to turn upon us afresh, Austria seems more likely to be driven into action, at last, but we have not the slightest faith in her. Selfish, cowardly, perjured, with no sense of honour, though plenty of pride, what can be hoped from such an ally? Our ministers appear to have obtained no foreign mercenaries yet; and the Foreign Enlistment Bill appears likely to be, therefore, a failure. The most interesting fact, perhaps, since our last, is the adhesion of Piedmont to the alliance, and her readiness to place fifteen thousand men at the disposal of our Commander-in

Chief. Piedmont has been steadily and successfully imitating our constitutional policy; is now engaged in putting her clergy into their proper places; and is, perhaps, the most really free State or the continent of Europe. She stands in noble contrast now with the meanness of Prussia especially, and of all Germany.

INSKIP, NBAR PRESTON. A public recognition service and tea meeting took place at Inskip on Tuesday, January 2nd., in token of the settlement of the Rev. J. Compston as pastor of the church in that place. The Rev. C. Williams, of Accrington, put the usual questions to the church and the pastor. Mr. John Catterall, the senior deacon, satisfactorily replied on behalf of the church. Mr. Compston then detailed the circumstances of his conversion and call to the ministry, and stated his views of the leading points of christian belief; after which Mr. Williams offered the recognition prayer. The Rev. W. Walters, of Halifax, then delivered an impressive and affectionate charge to the pastor, and the Rev. H. S. Brown, of Liverpool, preached a ser mon of characteristic excellence to the people. In the evening, upwards of three hundred and seventy per. sons partook of a social tea, and a very crowded public meeting followed, over which the newly recognised minister was called to preside. Effective addresses were given by Mr. Williams, Mr. Walters, Mr. Brown, Mr. Catterall, of Inskip, and Mr. Lamb, of Preston.

PITHAY, BRISTOL. On Monday, the 8th of January, the members and friends of the Pithay Chapel, Bristol, held a tea meeting, to commemorate the twentieth anniversary of the Rev. E. Probert's ministry in that place, when upwards of six hundred were present. After tea, H. O. Wills, Esq., occupied the chair. The Rev. B. Nicholson having offered prayer, Mr. B. Pratten, senior deacon, presented to Mr. Probert, on behalf of the church, several valuable works, as a token of their affectionate esteem, and appreciation of his earnest labours for their good : Kitto's Pictorial Bible, Scott's Commentary, Christian Cyclopædia, T. Watson's, Howe's, Foster's, and Fuller's Works, and Rogers's Essays. The Rev. E. Probert having ackuowledged the present, addresses were delivered by the Rev. J. S. Pearsall, J. Jack, F. Bosworth, J. A. Pratt, T. Jenkins, N. Haycroft, R. Morris, and H. Clark.

ROADR, NORTHAMPTONSHIRE. On the 1st of January, 1855, services were held in the Baptist meeting-house, in the above village, for the purpose of recognising the Rev. W. Sutton (lale of Bythorn, Hunts), as the pastor of the church assembling in that place. In the afternoon, a sermon was preached by the Rev. J. T. Brown, of Northamption, from the words, " Rejoicing in hope." After the service, between two and three hundred friends took tea; and in the evening, a public meeting was held, in which the Revs.

J. P. Haddy, of Ravensthorpe ; T. Lea, of ton, Durham, has accepted the unanimous Moulton; J. Litchfield, of Kingsthorpe; invitation of the church at the above place; J. Pywell, of Northampton ; T. Marriott, and has commenced his labours with enof Milton; and Mr. Sutton, took part.

couraging prospects of success. PARADISE CHAPEL, CHELSEA,

Obituary. On Wednesday evening, January 3rd, 1855, a social meeting of the church and

THB REV. C. NEW congregation connected with the above Died, on Lord's-day evening, Jan. 7th, place of worship was held, when addresses 1855, the Rev. Chas. New, Baptist minister, on the importance of christian efforts, and of Penzance, Cornwall. The event was kindred topics, were delivered by Messrs. very sudden. The congregation worshipping Whimper, Stagall, Robinson, and Ash. Mr. at the Clarence Street Baptist Chapel had Gusterson, the senior deacon of the church, assembled, and the hour appointed for the presented the pastor, the Rev. T. J. Cole, commencement of service had only been with a purse and its contents, as a small passed by a minute or two, when the starttoken of the esteem and christian affection ling intelligence went round that Mr. New of the people of his charge.

had unexpectedly breathed his last. On HALIFAX.

some of his friends hastening to his resi

dence, they found him sitting in an easy, An elegant General Baptist Chapel, in

reclining posture in the arm-chair of his the modern style, has been opened at Hali

study; the book he had last perused lying fax. The opening services were on the

open on its face, as if laid down for a mo21st, 24th, and 31st of December, concluded

ment while its possessor thought,-a cup, by a tea meeting on the 1st of January, 1855.

which had been removed by him from the The chapel has been erected under the

tea-table an hour previously, emptied of the superintendence, and to the credit, of Mr.

tea it contained, also on the table, -bis bead J. Simpson, architect, Leeds. Collections

a little reclined over the left shoulderat the opening have amounted, with some

and, though still warm, and looking a subsequent donations, to the uoble sum

placid as if in repose, quite dead. of £230.

For some years Mr. New had been lo á NEW PARK STREET, LONDON.

declining state of health. During the week New Park Street Chapel being closed for he had been under the care of his medical enlargement, the Rev. C. H. Spurgeon will attendant. But on the Sunday morning be preach in the large room, Exeter Hall, preached. In the afternoon he retired to Strand, on February 1th, and seven follow his study, and at four o'clock partook of tea, ing Lord's days. Services, a quarter before taking a cup of tea with him to his study. oleven, and half-past six.

Mrs. New was about to put one of the an DARLINGTON.

children to bed, and entered the study to

allow the child to wish its father “good ! Mr. J. Green, son of the late Rev. John

night,” when the reverend gentlemen was 1) Green, of Newcastle-on-Tyne, has accepted

found in his chair as stated. The summons the cordial and unanimous invitation of the

bad not reached him unprepared, and this Baptist church, Darlington, to become their

is the only, while it is the best, eonsolation pastor, and commenced his stated labours

of his bereaved widow and children, and de ibere on the second Sabbath in December.

his afflicted friends. WINCHCOMBE, GLOUCESTERSBIRR.

TAB REV. C. B. BIRT, M.A.. The members and friends in this town

Weregret to have to announce the decease having repaired the Baptist Chapel, have

of the Rev. C. E. Birt, M.A., of Wantage. invited the Rev. Robert Grace, of Harpole,

The event occurred on the 13th December to become their pastor. Mr. Grace has

last, after confinement to the house, and accepted their cordial invitation, and entered

cessation of ministerial engagements, for i on his engagements the third Sabbath in

about three weeks. Although the friends

were not prepared for so speedy a separaNEWPORT, MONMOUTHSHIRE.

tion, it had been painfully evident that the At the annual tea meeting of the English health of this valued servant of God was a Baptist church, held January 4th, an elegant gradually declining for some years previous purse, containing twenty guineas, was pre

to his removal. Mr. Birt had been in the sented to the pastor, Rev. W. Aitcheson, ministry for about thirty-eight years, the as a mark, on the part of the church and last ten of which were spent at Wantage congregation, of their regard and esteem. He had successively laboured at Derby

Portsea, and Bristol. Through his instruSMARDON, KENT.

mentality many have been converted to God. On December 31st, 1854, the Baptist

For many years his name has appeared as & church at Smardon, presented the pastor,

member of the Committee of the Baptist the Rev. William Syckelmore, with a

Missionary Society; and it would be diffpurse containing £10, as a token of their

cult to find a more zealous and steadfast love and esteem for him. Mr. Syckelmore

friend to that Society, and a more earnest is now in the eighteenth year of his pas. advocate of missions in general. By his torate.

death the church of Christ has lost a valued HOUGHTON REGIS, BEDS.

and honoured minister, and the regret felt The Rev. J. Lewes, formerly of Darling. | at his departure will be great and extended.

[ocr errors]



* “Built upon the foundation of the Apostles and Prophets, Jesus Christ himself being

the chief corner-stone."-Eph. ii. 20.

MARCH, 1855.


1 Kings xix. 4_18. The narrative of these verses leads us into the desert of Arabia. . Let us follow. In that lonely and simple region of nature our heart will be nearer to itself. Its frailties and its sins will become more distinctly visible. Those who falsely accuse us, and those who still more falsely excuse us, are afar. With itself and with the Lord it is alone; and thus what it is in itself, and what the Lord works in it, will be shown to us more clearly. Let us, then, withdraw for a moment from the busy throng, from the haunts of men and the pressure of artificial life, and follow a man of God into the still and silent wilderness, and there learn what the Lord teaches him. It is the lesson we also require to be taught-the operation of the Word of God- which always begins by turning our wisdom to shame, and then, by revealing its own mysterious nature, calling forth a new activity in us.

The man whom we now follow in the most important journey of his life, is the terrible Elijah of Thisbe, the prophet with the rough hide over his shoulders, and the leathern girdle about his loins, who, through half a century, had been known and feared by the people, from the king to the child. The father of the prophets we cannot call him, but the prince of the prophets he may well be styled; for in no one did the power and energy of the Divine Naster shine more conspicuous. Truly there was need of it in his day. Scarcely had the kingdom of Israel stood a hundred years, when already the circle of her apostacy was complete. Ahab, the worst of the kings who had sat on Jeroboam's throne, the husband of the imperious Jezebel, had suddenly taken the unhappy step from the image. worship of Dan and Bethel to undisguised idolatry. On all the heights of that mountainous country altars to Baal were raised, all the highways of the plain swarmed with priests of the sun and moon, and in every place flowed the blood of the prophets of Jehovah. Then the Lord stirred up Elijah of Thisbe to declare, by testimony and by miracle, that he alone was God, and all the idols nothing. Early had the prophet predicted a famine of several years' continuance, and now it is come. But while the widow of Sarepta, though a heathen, recognized in Elijah the prophet of Jehovah, the people remained in darkness and impenitence. Their distress was now at its height, when Elijah summoned Ahab and eight hun.

* A Translation of a Sermon preached on Lord's-day, 22nd of February, 1824, by Dr. Friedr. Strauss, Court Chaplain and Preacher in the Chapel-royal of the King of Prussia.


dred and fifty idol-priests to the summit of the ever-verdant Carmel. Fire from heaven consumed the offering of the prophet, while Baal could neither hear his halting and self-tormenting priests, or avenge their blood which stained the Kishon, flowing at the foot of the mount. Then fell a reviving rain on the parched ground, and suddenly was the calamity removed. Still, neither Ahab nor his people recognized the hand of the Lord, but went after their idols again. All, it seems, was in vain; and Jezebel sought with eagerness to avenge on Elijah the blood of the priests of Baal.

In those circumstances our text presents him to us. Hopeless over the stubbornness of the people, which could not be subdued by such a miracle, be betook himself to flight, and hastened into the kingdom of Judah towards Beersheba. This was on the border of that terrible wilderness, in which rugged rocks project themselves from the soil, naked sand-hills arise and are dissipated, the forked lightning plays, distant thunder rolls, and the deadly storm-wind roars. Thither he hastened, for what he saw there was a faithful picture of his inward feelings. Like the distant thunder growled his swelling heart; like the death - bearing tempest raged the resultless passions of his soul; and as that naked sand-hill is torn up, borne aloft in a moment, and then dashed upon another, so his thoughts tower over each other, now are bent upon some new enterprise, and now fall into hateful inactivity. In this distracted state be throws himself under a juniper bush: “It is enough,” he cries in his unbelief; “now, Lord, take my soul; I am not better than my fathers.” Doubtless it was unbelief, but an unbelief such as only exists in noble souls. Heart-felt pity for the calamities of their brethren,-clearest perception that nothing but their sins had precipitated their ruin,ardent impulses to deliver and to bless them, have they had; all that could be done on their behalf, by word and deed, they have done; but though for them they have sacrificed time, talents, and property, they see that there is no improvement. Alas! they anticipated with certainty the reward, the enjoyment, of the fruit of their labour; with this they fiattered them. selves, and amid their toils and privations this kept their spirits up. But what they aimed at is not attained. They are self-deceived. Instead of humbling themselves before the Lord, they roll the blame on another; intense affection becomes hatred, and unwearied activity becomes hopeless inaction. Behold, ye philanthropists, ye cumbered sages and teachers, ye self-sacrificing leaders, your image in the hour of depression here ! But it is the image not only of your sharpest smart, but also of your unbelief and self-dependence, which only in the failure of all your hopes becomes obvious to you. We also, as well as you, see our image here, all we who have been in earnest with our own reformation, who have striven with glowing resolution to be virtuous, who have resorted to many selfsacrifices, and made countless struggles, yet perceived in the end that we had made no advance, and had arrived neither at true peace nor unblemished virtue. Was it not with us, in those dark moments, as it was with Elijah in the wilderness? What he desired for his people we desired for ourselves, and what he did for his people had we done for ourselves, and now-nó result. “It is enough, Lord,” we exclaim, "let us no longer live.” We think to attain that with despairing rashness which we could not reach with hopeful earnestness; and in the lowering thunderstorm of our soul, our former zeal, resolution, and struggles, become almost ridiculous to us. Yet there have we learned, and there may every one learn, that this frame of mind is still under the guidance of an eternal and pitying Love. Elijah, overcome with disappointment and chagrin, fell asleep. His own strength, his human energy, must appear in all their nothingness, and his own wisdom be brought to shame, for that is the first operation of the Divine Word, and in such a manner a sense of need is always the first beginning of salvation. Human energy, thus we see, conducts not to its object, and, therefore, must be laid aside.

The angel of the Lord called twice on Elijah, bade him eat and drink, and strengthened him to take a distant journey. Elijah obeyed. Forty days and forty nights wandered he on through many a byway, and fell on many a false track, in which he recognized a likeness to the former byways and wanderings of his own spiritual impulses; yet through them all he reaches Horeb, that holy spot in the desert, at which, six hundred years before, the Lord spoke to Moses out of the burning bush; in the vicinity of which, amid the sound of the trumpet, and the thunder's roar, the law was given; and, standing on the summit of which, Moses, with outstretched arm, smote Amelek below. Elijah had erred, both on life's journey and on his desert road, but he had erred unwittingly, and by such errors the Lord overrules his wanderers, and brings them at last to their Horeb.

In one of the many hollows of the mountain, the weary wanderer lays himself down to rest, before whose spirit, while asleep as while awake, pass in review the grand events of which this had been the scene; when, lo! again comes the Word of God to the weary one, and speaks, “ What doest thou here, Elijah ?" Then burst forth what had formerly engrossed and embittered his spirit in Jezreel and in the wilderness of Beershebay and he answers, “I have been jealous for Jehovah, the God of hosts; for the children of Israel have forsaken thy covenant, and broken down thine altars, and slain thy prophets with the sword; I alone survive, and they pursue me to take away my life.” Blessed be that open and honest acknowledgment of the inmost feelings of the heart! In him comes forth what had otherwise lain hid, and in fair procession pass the secrets of his soul before us. Elijah would express his own zeal, but while he does so, discovers, too, what sort of zeal it is. It comes short of true love, for the danger of his own life most affects him. It comes short of true faith, for he distrusts the Word of God as having no friends but himself. Distinctly is expressed the secret pride, that he alone of those surviving was righteous;-that dangerous pride, which still in the present day betrays itself in uncalled-for censorship, and passionate reprehensions of others' sins. Reverence for God's law, perhaps, lies at the bottom; but God grant us humility to beware, lest, with all our reverence, we inflate our. selves with spiritual pride. The angel of the Lord makes no reply to Elijah's complaint, neither commends nor commiserates him, and this is ever the right way to deal with such,,he only bade him leave his gloomy cavern, and stand forth before the Lord on the mount.

There now stands the prophet. Thither turn your gaze, and learn with him the great lesson of the nature of the Gospel, and the surpassing gentleness of Divine Grace. There stands the prophet, with his rough garment, his leathern girdle, and his strong staff, in the midst of the waste wilderness, on the holy summit of Mount Horeb, and God will talk with him. There he stands, and the Lord draws nigh. Before him passes a great and strong wind. Furious it rages by, uprooting the solitary trees and bushes, rending the hills, driving the sandbanks against each other, forming them anew into bolder cliff's, and breaking in pieces the very rocks. The prophet imagines it is the power of the Lord, and thinks he perceives him. But the Lord was not in the wind. A silence succeeds. Then comes an earthquake. The summit reels, the bowels of the moun. tain are rent, the earth opens, and the ground upon which the prophet stood seems as if it would swallow him up. Surely the Lord is there,

« AnteriorContinuar »