« AnteriorContinuar »
multitudes. Their words pierce as arrows, and their instructions eat into the heart as fire.
No success can be guaranteed when there are moral discrepancies and delinquencies in the life. A man whose general character is full of flaws had better not come prominently into this work. We do not convey jewels in broken boxes. An inconsistent man will mar whatever he touches. He will justly lay himself open to the retort : “Physician, heal thyself.” He had better quietly do battle with his own besetments.
It is further to be noticed that in the work itself every grace is tried, and sometimes severely. The rudeness of those we desire to serve will try our sensibility, their obduracy will try our patience, the lack of result will try our faith. And any manifestation of petulance under these circumstances will seriously imperil success. But the holy man will be preserved from all discrepancies between life and teaching, and his aggressive toils will be sustained by a beautifully blameless walk.
But no human agency is equal to the results sought after. Only God can convince of sin and illuminate the mind so that it can apprehend Christ savingly, pardon sin on the exercise of faith, renew the nature and fortify the soul against the assaults of Satan. And holiness alone can secure a hold on His power :
• The secret of the Lord is with them that fear Him.” Moses spoke with God face to face. John saw one like unto the Son of man walking in the midst of the golden candlesticks, And let us not think that friendship with God is a thing of the past. This intimacy is as real now as it was then. The King came in his robes of state then, and in such a way as to impress the outward sense : He comes without His royal robes now, and in yet more familiar and condescending style. That is all. The holy man will enjoy this Presence in an eminent degree. Christ dwells in him, and having this power at command how shall he labour in vain ? Confessedly the work is great, the difficulties appalling, yet when linked to Omnipotence the believer shall accomplish wonders compared with which the physical miracles of a Paul or Peter sink into the shade.
The Church records assure us that our useful men have been holy men. No man was ever saved by rhetoric or neatly-turned periods. In our own section of the Church soul-saving has been associated with such names as William Bramwell, David Stoner, Thomas Collins, John Smith, Joseph Wood, John Henley, Gideon Ouseley; men of no great mark as scholars and we throw no discredit on their memories in saying this,—but men after the apostolic type, “full of faith and of the Holy Ghost.” What then is the great qualification for usefulness ? Not learning.
an acquaintance with modern literature. Not even familiarity with the sacred languages. Not even the mastery of all theological truth, the relation of truth to truth, with a skill to defend it against all adversaries. We do not decry knowledge. Its value is incalculable. The
"wise” whose time has been given to elaborate research, and whose vast resources have been used to enrich and beautify God's Church, are not to be thrust into a corner : they will be conspicuous, will shine “as the firmament,”—with a steady radiance; but“ they that turn many to righteousness” are to have marked individual splendour; they are to shine out as the stars for ever and ever.”
But the practical must not be forgotten in the didactic and expository. Probably the reader has been engaged in Christian work, but have the results been satisfactory? If not, have we not the secret here—We lack the power that goodness supplies ? Heart sin or low attainment will tie our hands, but purity will set them free and invest them with a divine vigour. Then let the cry of the Psalmist go upwards : “ Create in me a clean heart, O God;" and, in the relation of effect to cause, it will follow “ Then will I teach transgressors Thy ways, and sinners shall be converted unto Thee."
HISTORY OF INDIAN MISSIONS.*
BY THE REV. J. S. BANKS.
MODERN missions in India will ever rate forms of Hinduism, nor had form a bright page in church history. the
the first missionaries to meet In the character of their agents, in the iron barriers of caste. That boldness and breadth of aim, in the obstacles so gigantic are silently difficulties grappled with, in the yielding to the force of Christian energy displayed, in the results won, truth is a fact to which believers they will compare well with the may well point with thankfulness missions of any age, not excepting and pride." One feature primitive the earliest of all. We enjoy, in- and modern missions have in comdeed, one great advantage over the mon—the apostolic spirit of selfapostolic teachers in our command sacrifice still living in the Church. of the resources of Christianity Indian missions alone furnish a host already established in Europe. But of names as bright as the best age this is more than counterbalanced of Christian life can show. by comparative disadvantages. In In the history of Indian missions, India there no preparatio Mr. Sherring has a good story to evangelica such as had so long been tell, and he tells it well. In dedeveloping in the Greek and Roman scribing a vast and complex field he world. But, on the other hand, is equally lucid and comprehensive. there was no religious system among As a history of the origines of misthe nations of the Empire which for sion-work in India, his book must vigour, compactness and strength retain a permanent value. Not less could be compared with the elabo- admirable than the clearness and
* “ The History of Protestant Missions in India, from 1706 to 1871.” With Map. Rev. M. A. Sherring, M.A., LL.B., Lond. Of the London Mission, Trubner and Co., 1875.
“ Hinduism and its Relations to Christianity,” Rev. J. Robson, M.A. Formerly of Ajmere. Hamilton, Adams and Co., 1874.
method of the whole is the spirit | On the roll of the Tranquebar misof generosity displayed in tracing sion appear stations since grown the missions of so many different familiar - Cuddalore, Negapatam, churches. Most interesting of all Tanjore, Trichinopoly. Most of the to friends of missions are the illus- methods now in use were employed trations and discussions of the by those early labourers-itinerant various agencies, evangelistic and preaching, schools, medical aid. It educational, employed by the differ- is strikingly characteristic of Indian ent bodies. There is not an agency missions that as early as 1707, i.e., ever engaged in mission-work which two years after arriving in India may not be seen in active operation Ziegenbalg began the translation of in India on the largest scale. Theo- the New Testament into Tamil, and ries of all kinds have there been finished it in 1711, an earnest of brought to the test of practice. the great work of Bible translation, While most churches employ all which has gone on ever since over methods according to their means the whole field. and the kind of population they
Schwartz will ever rank among the have to deal with, a few devote apostles of India. His labours fell only themselves mainly or exclusively two years short of half a century, and to one particular method. Experi- that without a break, 1750–1798. ence shows that no one is to be His sagacity, general ability, uprightabsolutely condemned. Much de- ness and self-sacrifice were perfect. pends on locality and the energy Here is a picture of him in 1766, put into the work. Plans which when he founded the Trichinopoly fail in one place and in some hands
Here, on an income of succeed in other places and other £48 a year, dressed in dimity dyed hands. In trying to get a bird's- black, eating rice and vegetables eye view of the history and field cooked in native fashion, and living of Indian missions we cannot do in a room of an old building just better than follow Mr. Sherring's large enough to hold himself and guidance.
his bed, Schwartz devoted himself, The honour of founding Protest- with the utmost simplicity, combined ant missions in India belongs to with an enthusiasm which consumed Denmark. The date was 1705, the him, to his apostolic duties among scene Tranquebar, south of Madras, the inhabitants of the city and the first missionaries, Ziegenbalg neighbourhood." He was 'in labours and Plutschau. The Tranquebar
more abundant.' He was often mission is less known in England called in against his will to act as than the Serampore mission of the mediator between the English and north, but it well deserves to be native States, and both reposed the known. In many respects—in diffi- same confidence in his incorruptible culties with government, in ardour integrity. In time of war he went and success, in their extinction when in and out of the hostile camps their
precursory work was done the without danger or suspicion. The two missions were alike. Schwartz Rajah of Tanjore when requesting was the counterpart of Carey, if not his services said, “Padre, I have in learning, yet in life-long devotion, confidence in you, because you are sustained enthusiasm, spotless in- indifferent to money.” Hyder Ali, tegrity and massiveness of character. the Indian Napoleon, the fiercest Carey did not land in India till 1793, and ablest foe England ever had in five years before Schwartz’s death. | India, refused to receive an English
embassy, but said, “Let them send Plutschau, Kiernander, Schultze, me the Christian ; he will not de- Grundler, Pohle and others were not ceive me." He was appointed guar- ordinary men. In talent, zeal and dian of the Tanjore Rajah's adopted enthusiasm they were worthy of their son, as well as placed on the com- leader and the Indian field. mission for governing the kingdom
The immediate success of the when everything had fallen into dis- Danish missions was marvellous. order. On his death his youthful Remembering the slow and painful ward “shed a flood of tears over his advance of later days, we are astonbody, and covered it with a gold | ished to hear of annual additions of cloth.” “ He was revered
converts by hundreds. It is true that father by the people, as well as by the missionaries were well supported the Rajah of Tanjore. The religious at home. Both in England and welfare of the people was Denmark kings were nursing-fathers uppermost in his mind. All other and queens nursing-mothers. In enterprises and toils were subordi- after days a Dean of the English nated to this, and were embraced in Church became the biographer of the broad views of Christian duty Schwartz, and his book will always which he entertained. He lived as remain a classic of its kind. Still a celibate, that he might devote this does not explain the surprising himself unreservedly to the service results. In the limited district of his Master. The qualities of his which formed the scene of the mismind and heart were depicted in his sion, no fewer than fifty thousand venerable and impressive figure; natives professed Christianity within and his features were those on which the century. We cannot but supmen loved to look, and which stirred pose something wrong, and the their souls with a subtile spiritual whole secret is out when we learn influence. Few men have lived to that the Danish missionaries tolesway human hearts so strongly. In rated caste in their churches. On his last illness, a transient improve- this condition there would never be ment in his condition enabled him any difficulty in gaining converts. to visit the church at the Christ- But the unsoundness of the rapid mas festival. The congregation was prosperity is shown by the fact that wild with excitement, and he could it passed away as rapidly as it grew scarcely make his way through the up. The mistake made by the early crowd. At his death a long and Danish missions, perhaps from inbitter
of lamentation arose from experience, was not repeated at multitudes."
Serampore or by any Protestant This love of the people is better society since, except, unfortunately, praise than even “Minutes” of En- by the Leipsic Mission on the same glish Governors. Nor was this uni- field of Tanjore, which acts in this versal favour purchased by unworthy respect in a way most injurious to compliances." He boldly expounded other missions and to the Gospel. the truth to the Rajah and to the peo- Roman Catholic missions have ple of his court in the face of Brah- always, on principle, allowed caste, mans and priests who endeavoured to and reap numbers if nothing else. withstand him, and destroy the effect In 1793, Carey landed in Calcutta. of his words.” It must not be sup
It is well known that the Baptist posed that Schwartz was the only mission was protected by the Danish great character whom the Danish flag, and had its centre on Danish mission produced. Ziegenbalg, .l territory. The story of Carey, Marshman and Ward, the pioneers the scale in favour of English. of Protestant missions in the north, The greatest results have followed of their conflicts and triumphs, their from this decision. Sanscrit could disinterestedness and devotion, is so never have been the medium of familiar that we pass it by.
It is scientific education. All its assoless known that strictly speaking ciations are steeped in heathenism. Carey was not the first Protestant Even if it had been adopted, the missionary in North India. In experiment could not have suc1758, the year after Plassey, Kier- ceeded. But time was saved and nander had come from Madras and much waste prevented by the imcommenced work in Calcutta, where mediate adoption of English. Dr. for many years he laboured with
Duff began with five students, great success, preaching both to who soon grew into eight hundred. Europeans and natives, establishing That was the beginning of the schools and baptizing hundreds of system of English education, which converts. He no doubt proceeded now covers the whole face of India, on the same plan as his brethren in and is doing more than anything the south, and this explains why else to modify Hindu thought and the fruit of his life's labours was
life. The other missions soon had not lasting
institutions after Dr. Duff's model. The Church Missionary Society Calcutta was also the birth-place broke ground in Calcutta in 1815, of female education through girls' the year after the new charter had schools and zenana-teaching. Now removed restrictions on mission that this movement is borne on the labour, and the London Society in tide of popular favour, it must not 1816. Dr. Duff opened the Scotch be forgotten that it originated in mission in 1830, the Propagation Christian missions. Among the Society began in 1820. It would be labourers in this cause should be hard to name the missionary agency specially mentioned the late Mrs. which is not in full work in Cal- Mullens, daughter of Rev. A. F. cutta. The metropolis boasts of the Lacroix and wife of Dr. Mullens of prince of vernacular preachers in the London Mission, English ladies Rev. A. F. Lacroix, of the London of rank have given no little impetus Mission, and of the best vernacular to the work. In former days Lady schools under Rev. J. Long, of the Hastings and Lady Amherst often Church Mission, who is perhaps the paid visits to the schools. Miss greatest master of all that pertains Brittan, a lady of considerable to native life and literature. Here skill in organization and energy "is too, as might be expected, educa- at the head of an establishment tion is carried to the highest point. consisting of nineteen foreign and In this department the Scotch and East Indian ladies, and fifty-three English churches take the lead. native Christian fellow-helpers, who It is surprising now to read of the have under their charge in Calcutta dispute at first about the language and its suburbs a normal school of in which higher education should thirty young Christian women train
Native prejudice, to ing as teachers, twenty-one girls' which the English government has
schools with seven hundred and always greatly deferred, and early ninety-four scholars, an orphanage precedent, were strongly in favour of of twenty-one girls, and one hundred Sanscrit. It was mainly Dr. Duff's and fifty zenanas.” This was in energy and eloquence which turned 1871, since which time the numbers