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From the latest accounts, it appears that “the seriousness, though apparently at a stand among adults, has greatly increased among the youth and children.” That it has visited the schools, in which many have been powerfully affected, and some, as is hoped, have been made savingly acquainted both with their danger, and the refuge provided for the truly penitent.". In a letter from the pastor of the church, the Rev. Mr. Porter, it is stated, that the whole number of those, who were the hopeful subjects of renovating influences of the Holy Spirit, was reu koned at two hundred and fifty. This was on the 20th ult. From intelligence still more recent, it appears, that the anxious inquiry still continues.
It is not to be supposed the attention is confined to this single town, because we have not published accounts froin any others. We have indeed received verbal information from many places in the neighborhood of the abovementioned; whence we learn, that the towns of Enfield, Ware, Granby, Amherst, SouthHadley, and Northampton, in Hampshire connty; Monson, Palmer, Brimfield and South Brimfield, in the county of Hampden; Western,Brookfield in its several parishes, North Brookfield, New Braintree, and Hardwick, in the county of Worcester; have all received effusions of the divine Spirit, and the attention of sioners has been loudly called to the concerns of their souls. In several of these towns, the effects have been not less astonishing, nor the number of convictions less, than in Belchertown, compared with the population.
Newark, N.J. which has formerly shared Listinguished testimonies of God's special favor, in renovating the hearts of sinners, is once more enjoying the visxations of divine mercy. We learn, from an authentic source, that in one of the religious societies of that town, between fifty and sixty are making the "grand inquiry," and that a few have obtained hopes. The same correspondent says, that "a revival of cor.iderable power and extent is taking place in the congregation at Westfield, N.J."
It is a consoling reflection, that, amidst all the erroneous doctrines which spread over the world, and the dreadful impieties wlrich are the genuine offspring of heresy, the defence of the Christian church, and the preservation of any truth in this apostate world, are altogether in the hand of God. Infidelity has a thousand forms. Her modes of captivating the hearts and ruining the souls of men are without number. If unsuccessful in open warfare, the apostles of error can assume the dress, and imitate the language of friends. They can ascend the pulpit, garble and distort the words of the Bible, and from the very words, nay, from the threatenings of the divine law, can preach peace to the impenitent, and in the manner of their great Antitype and progenitor, can easily persuade stupid sinners, that “they shall not surely die.” But when the Lord arises to have mercy on Zion, and the Holy Spirit arouses the attention of those who were formerly dead in trespasses and sins, the delusion vanishes. Men thus awakened see that the treacherous whispers of peace, once heard with delight, and believed with confidence, are only the artifices of Satan and his emissaries. They awake; they examine; and by the grace of God, repent and live.
It is said that the present Prince Royal of Persia has greatly exerted himself to correct the excesses of religious zeal in the Mussulmauds employed in his service, and to protect the Christians who might suffer from their violenice. To sanction his proceedings, he was desirous of obtaining the support of the superiors of the Mohammedan priesthood, the natural guardians of the Mussulman laws; and therefore assembled a divan composed of Sheick ul-Islam, and the principal. Ulemas (doctors of the law) of the city of Tauris. He proposed for their determination the following questions, which they answered serialim. First, Was the Lord Jesus a true prophet sent from God? Answer, Yes. Secondly, Are the laws promulgated in his honorable Gospel just or not? Answered unanimously, Yes, they are just. Thirdly, According to our own laws, may the laws of the Lord Jesus, promulgated in his honorable Gospel, be blasphemed; Answered unanimously, No, it is unjust. It is added, that after these decisions, to which the Ulemas gave the form of a fatha, or judicial sentence, the Prince Royal or dered one of his domestics to receive a hundred blo:vs, in punishment for an ins;
sult offered to a Christian; and then dismissed him from his service, as an example to those who might be inclined to dishonor Jesus Christ, and to insult the professurs of Christianity.
Christian Observer for Aug. 1818.
PERSIAN INQUIRIES INTO CHRISTIANITY. In our last Number we alluded to some favorable symptoms of the commencement of a more tolerant system in Persia towards Christianity than was formerly the case. The following extract from the Missionary Register for last month will throw further light upon the subject.
“The discussions and controversies which the late Rev. Henry Martyn held with the learned in Persia, during the short time that he passed among them before his lamented death, excited great attention. Copies of the pieces written in this singular, and, on his part, intrepid controversy, are now in this country; and will, probably, be given to the public, in translations from the Persian originals.
“We have seen a letter to a distinguished nobleman, from an Englishman resident in Persia, in which he states, that Mr. Martyn's discussions at Shiraz, made so deep an impression on the people there, that many were converted secretly, and the Molwahs totally silenced. His books were put into the hands of men of the greatest celebrity and talents, in order to their being refuted. In various places, eulogiums on the Gospel were openly uttered; and an earnestness and mildness of inquiry evinced, by many of the learned, into the character and mission of the Messiah.
“We have also seen a letter to the same nobleman from a Mahommedan in Persia, professing his thorough conviction of the truth of Christianity, obtained, in part, from his perusal of Mr. Martyn's books. The following extract will gratify our readers:
"I have long directed my attention to ir vestigate the different existing religions; and, having read various histories and other books, I have collected more or less information on the subject, and satisfied myself that the religion of Mahomed is vain, and devoid of the ornaments of truth. I also studiously examined the religions of the Jews, of the Magi, and others; but I could not obtain that satisfaction from any, which I wanted. I therefore attended the learned and the ministers of the Christian religion, discussing with them various systems; and, among others the Five Sects of Islamism; and discovered the vanity and insufficiency of each. The result of the whole is this: that I adopted, in my heart, the Christian religion—in my heart, because the profession and practice of it, in a country of Mahomedans, is impossible. I now therefore take the liberty of addressing you, most earnestly requesting that you will not withhold your kindness and benevolence from me, but that I may pass the rest of my life under your protection, devoting myself to the worship of God. I am now twenty-five years old. I am totally unable of myself to go to you. Oh, how happy should I consider myself, if you would comply with my wishes! So far as I can see, I have no other resource but to go to you. I have no other, know no other, who can liberate my life from sin. May the season of your life and prosperity log remain!
“P. S. I have two brothers, who are of the same way of thinking with myself.”
Christian Observer, for Sept. 1818.
EXTRACTS FROM THE JOURNAL OF MRS. NICHOLS AT BOMBAY.
Mrs. Nichols is in the habit of keeping a journal, and enclosing it to her parents for their perusal. We have obtained permission to make such extracts from it as we judge will be useful in their tendency, and interesting to the public. Though these writings were hastily composed, and never intended for publication, we shall endeavor not to abuse the confidence reposed in us, by obtruding upon our readers, things of a more private and delicate nature. It' is with sarprise and regret, that we have seen confidential letters of missionaries, written solely for the perusal of an intimate friend or relative, and containing many things
respecting the mere domestic arrangements of the writer, thrown indiscriminately and inconsiderately into the newspapers. This must be very mortifying to the missionaries, when they are informed of it, and has a tendency to prevent all free correspondence between themselves and their friends; as they will expect to see their most private commuvications proclaimed on the house-tops.
After a few words by way of introduction, Mrs. N. commences hier journal June 20, 1818.
Capt. Edes of Boston. and Capt. Blanchard of Beverly, took tea with us this evening. It is extremely gratifying to us, to receive visits from Americans, though they should be entire strangers.
Sabbath, June 21. The season of social worship to-day has been unusually pleasant to me. In the closing prayer I thought I realized something of the preciousness of the word, and of the privilege of calling on Gid. But our assemblies are vastly different from Christian congregations in my vative land. There, several hundreds are collected to listen to the preached Gospel; here we never have more than eight or ten; to-day but four. In nothing do I more strongly realize my separation from America, than in the loss of those religious opportunities and privileges with which I was always favored. Couid I now go unto the house of God, and unite with his people in acts of divine worship, or meet for prayer in the pleasant chamber of sister P. or sister C. it would indeed seem to me like a paradise; and I should almost think myself on the threshold of the upper world.
An interesting occurrence took place to-day. Three boys, who were Jews, care in to ask for more of the Scriptures. They had read the translation of Matthew, which Mr. Hall had previously given them. Nothing could be more gratifying to us, than for hundreds to make similar applications.
23.' Was waked this morning by the beating of a drum in the mussulmaun* burying ground, which lies very near our house. This is practised every morning at precisely four o'clock, and is done in honor of some distinguished character.
Sabbath, June 28. Behold the rays of another Sabbath, but, О how dark! dark as the deepest recesses of the tomb, or the midnight den of the howling lion. Here is no Sabbath, no meeting, no reading of the Word of God, and no prayers to Him who is enthroned in glory, but yet condescends to hear the supplications of the humble and contrite. Multitudes for whom Christ died, are as eager in the common pursuits of life on the Lord's day, as on any; and as regardless of their souls as the thoughtless insect that sports in the air.
Dear friends in America, prize your privileges. Value the Gospel as your most excellent possession, and give thanks to God daily, that you had not your birth in a heathen land.
June 30., We were much surprised this morning by the unusual appearance of Kristnumbut, our bramhun.t 'He came in very early with a dejected countenance, and without any friendly salutation, which is entirely different from his customary cheerfulness. He is in the habit of saying, in the most open and pleasant manner you can conceive, “Salam” to one, "good morning" to another, and
• This word has commonly been spelt mussulman, on which account some writers have made the plural mussulmen, supposing the last syllable to be our English word man. But this is not the case; and the word should be spelt as it is pronounced, mussulmaun, and in the plural, mussulmauns.
There is scarcely any thing which is in itself of small consequence, so perplexing as the vexations uncertainty in the orthography of eastern words and names. English writers of erinence do not seem to aim at any thing like uniformity or consistency in this respect. As to accuracy, it is entirely out of the question. There are two principal causes of this. One is a want of strict attention to the pronunciation of orientul words by the natives: the other is the application of our extremely vague alphabet, without explaining the sounds meant to be described. Thus for instance, a writer uses the letter a in a Hinduo word; and no European can tell which of the four sounds of a he wishes to have given to it. Another writer might use o, or au, or aw, lo convey the same sound; and so of the other vowels. Il is one of the great defects of our language, that, while we have seventeen vowels, we are obliged to express them all by five characters.
† The word bramhun we have determined to spell as in the text. It has been spelt brach man, brahman, brahmin, bramin, brahmen, and perhaps in other ways. The more movere spelling bas been bramin, till this is of late supplanted by bramhun. The aspirate of the second syllable is very slight; and the word, so far as we caá ascertaiu, sounds very acudly as if writteu bram-un; or bram-mun.
whow do you do” to a third. He has lately learned the use of these English phrases, the use of which pleases bim much in addressing us. Said I, the inan is irrational; what is the matter?
Instead of a handsome pugaree, (a head dress,) he had a small piece of white cloth about his head. For his garment, which some resembles a large gown, he had only a strip of cloth thrown loosely about him. We soon learned that he had recently been informed of the death of both his parents, who had lived in a distant part of the country. His mother was burned alive with the dead body of his father. According to the Hindoo religion, one who loses a relative is unclean ten days. During this period, he is not allowed to wear any thing of an ornamental kind, nor to touch any person. Kristnumbut came earlier than usual, on account of the great variety of ceremonies which 'his religion requires him for ten days to perform. He begged us to be merciful to him; that is, to allow him to come when, and stay as short a time as he pleased, for the ten days. He asked Mr. B. if, according to the Christian religion, he should be polluted, if he, (the bramhun,) should touch him.
July 1. Had an animated season of prayer this evening. Mr. Hall appeared unusually fervent. Two subjects predominated in his prayer. That we might be better prepared for our work; and that the heathen might speedily accept of Christ as their only Savior.
2. Though it may appear trilling to you, yet as such things are uncommon here, I will relate one of the most striking marks of honesty, which Mr. Bardwell has witnessed among the natives. A short time since he lost a pair of gloves. To-day, as he was passing a shop of natives, a little boy ran from the shop with the gloves in his hands, asking Mr. B. if they were his. We could account for this act of kindness in no other way, than on the ground of the boy's attachment to Mrs. Bardwell, as one of her scholars.
From what I have Icarned of the natives of Ceylon, and those of this place, I find a considerable difference, if not in their real character, at least in their intercourse with men. In Ceylon there is something in the conduct of the natives, which has a resemblance to benevolence and kindness. Here, the good of another does not come into their calculations. If a native engages in a piece of work for us, all his object appears to be to hasten its accomplishment, that he may have his pay. And if it is not done well, he will exert himself to convince you that it is. Theft, fraud, and lying, are not sins amongst the Hindoos.
4. Sat. This evening had a meeting preparatory to the celebration of the Lord's supper. The subject of the sermon, by the aid of the Holy Spirit, was calculated to search our hearts, and show us whether we are in the faith.
6. This evening Mr. Horner, a Wesleyan missionary, took tea with us. He gave us some interesting information in regard to his brethren in Ceylon. Their schools are prosperous. Several children under their care have hopefully embraced the Gospel: one or two died, giving evidence of vital piety. Twa native priests abandoned their own religion, threw away their priestly robes, and declared their belief, that there was no salvation but through Jesus Christ.
You can hardly conceive, my dear mother, how much more animated our prayer meeting was on account of the attendance of this one Christian friend,
8. Had a most delightful and refreshing walk with Mr. N. Went to the sea shore, where we had a fair view of the shipping in the harbor. We were delighted with the appearance of vegetation, which has very suddenly revived since the commencement of the rains. But we see nothing even now, which bears a comparison with American cornfields and orchards in blossom.
In our inclosure is a native school. It was very interesting to us this evening, to hear the native boys sing an hyma entitled, "a hymn to Christ." Two of the boys stood in the centre of the house, on a floor of earth, as monitors, who repeated the hymn, line by line, which was sung by about so boys standing in a straight line, with their hands clasped together, and giving the most profound attention. I should think the monitors about six or seven years old. These schools are remarkably orderly; they are governed with strict severity.
Sabbath, July 12. Worship as usual. At the close of the other exercises, the ordinance of baptism was administered by Mr. Bardwell. A few months ago, Mr. Hall took an African boy about 11 or 12 years of age. This boy was baptised, and named Daniel. The performances were very solemn.
UNION OF RELIGIOUS DENOMINATIONS,
The Religious Convention of Christian denominations met at Washington, Mississippi, Nov. 19, 1818, pursuant to an appointment made at Clear Creek, Dec. 19, 1817. The Rev. Joseph Bullen preached from Eph. iv, 3. Endeavor 10 keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.
In this meeting were Christian ministers and members of Churches of different denominations. Our limits do not permit the insertion of all the doings and resolves of the meeting; but we cheerfully invite the attention of our readers to the following articles of convention, which were reported and unanimously adopted on this occasion.
Articles of Convention. 1. A meeting similar to the present, shall be holden annually, as long as shall be found expedient, at such time and place as shall have been appointed at the preceding meeting.
2. The meeting, when convened, shall be styled, “The Religious Convention of Christian Denominations.”
3. The convention shall be composed of ministers of the gospel in good standing, and officers or other official representatives of any Christian church.
4. The fundamental principles of this convention are mutual affection for each other as disciples of one common Lord, and cordial desire to promote the interests of his kingdom.
5. It is no part of the business of this convention, to discuss points either of doctrine or of discipline, about which any of its members may differ in sentiment. And it is by no means expected, that any member shall renounce any of the distinguishing characteristics of the religious denomination to which he belongs, or that he shall refrain from inculcating his sentiments, either from the pulpit, from the press, or in private "onversation.
6. The distinct objecis of this convention are to promote a spirit of mutual forbearance and brotherly affection between its members, and between their respective denominations to make unitedly every prudeut exertion possible to suppress prevailing vices and to endeavor, by every mean that promises success, to promote the cause of Christ, throughout our land and the world. • 7. For these purposes it is proposed to combine, as far as possible, the energies of all the friends of Zion, in the advancement of every moral, religious and chara itable design, in the promotion of which they can consistently and cordially unite,
On motion,-Resolved. That the convention, adjourn, to meet ať Jersey Meeting house, Homochitto, on Wednesday the 24th day of November, 1819. Concluded with prayer, in the most Christian friendship and affection.
J. BULLEN, Moderator.
MISSION AMONG THE CHEROKEES. It is with emotions of peculiar gratitude to God, that we are able to mention the conclusion of a treaty between the government of the U. S. and the Cherokee mation, the leading features of which are;
That after the cession of some lands to the U. S. an aburdant territory still remains to them; and
That a reservation is made of a tract of land, equal to twelve miles square, to be sold by the U. S. and the avails vested as a permanent school-fund, to be expended under the direction of the President of the U. S. for the instruction of the Cherokees on this side of the Mississippi. It is supposed this fund will yield a very handsome sur annually.
The preamble distinctly recognizes the wish of a majority of the Cherokees to remain on the land of their fathers, and their favorable inclination towards civilization and improvement.
MODE OF CONDUCTING SABBATII SCHOOLS.
A TEACHER of Sabbath schools beyond the Alleganies, in a letter to the editor of the Panoplist, requests that the following practice, from which he had-secu much good result, may be stated, without mentioning his name. Vol. XV.