« AnteriorContinuar »
In the Chronicle for January, page 30, art. South Seas, 24lh line from above, for * 1891/ read " 1831."
In the Acknowledgments of last month, 5th line from above, for 'Teachers,' read' Scholars.
Z — for • Jerson,' read " lerson.
Page 80, 1st col. 13th line, for ' Maberley Chapel, Rev. R. Philip,' read " Kingsland Chapel, Rev. J. CampM
ARRIVAL OF REV. JOHN HANDS. Just, as the monthly Chronicle was going to press, we received a letter from the Rev. Mr. Hand dated September 30, 1831, stating that he and his companions reached Madias on the22nd' that month; all of them in health and safety. The Rev. Mr. Buyers, after landing on the m and preaching at Black Town Chapel, again embarked on the 26th, and proceeded on his voyaf to Calcutta.
John Westley and Co. 27, Ivy Lane.
FOR APRIL, 1832.
OF DACLEV LASF, YORKSHIRE,
It is a pleasing exercise of the mind Jo contemplate pure and undefiled religion even in theory. She is possessed of such beauty and loveliness, and adorned with so many attractive qualities, that when seen and known she compels her enemies to admire, and awakens new emotions of esteem in the hearts of her friends. Her countenance beams forth benignity and love; her every look indicates serenity and peace; her language is heavenly wisdom; and her every action righteousness. Clothed with humility she vaunteth not herself, assumes no forbidding airs, but is easy to be entreated, and full of good fruits. Her heart is the seat of compassion; and her hand is open and ready to relieve distress in all its various forms. She wipes the tear from the eye of sorrow; takes away the fear that hath torment; inspires with hope the desponding mind, by directing it to the atoning blood and perfect righteousness of the Saviour; endues with patience under affliction; and even in death, like a guardian angel, points and leads the way to the fountain of life, and of pure, uninterrupted, and endless joy.
Though we do not behold religion embodied as perfect as the ideal conception we can form of it; yet, in many instances, we see it exemplified in a high degree of power and excellence. Through the connexion of the renewed mind with
the body it is constantly affected and influenced by bodily wants, appetites, a»d passions, and by circumstances and surrounding objects. Hence the holy principles of religion meet with a counteracting force; and "the law in the members wars against the law of the mind,'' and shades and obscures at seasons the beauties of holiness. But whatever imperfections may attend the subject of true religion, he is distinguished from what he was in his unrenewed state, and from what others are while the servants of sin, by his views, his feelings, his spirit, and practice. He hungers and thirsts after righteousness, and earnestly desires the spirit of grace, to work in him a complete conformity to the will of God. He sees all moral excellence combined in the Saviour; and it is his ardent desire and prayer that he may, by divine grace, be blessed with a growing resemblance of him.
In the experience and lives of many worthy ministers and private Christians recorded in your pages, we have indubitable evidence of the truth of the above statement. Their deep repentance, humility, and self-denial; their watchfulness, spiritual-mindedness, and fervent devotion; their compassion, active benevolence, and readiness to every good work; their meekness and patience under opposition and trials; their steady perseverance,; a
their lore to the Saviour and his cause; theirzeal in his service, and their unceasing prayers for the enlargement of his kingdom and the salvation of sinners, manifest the power of grace on the heart, and exhibit striking traits of the character of their Redeemer and Lord. We are encompassed with a cloud of witnesses to the power of divine grace; and the influence of their example cannot fail to excite the desire of imitation, and induce some to become followers of such as are now inheriting the promised blessings.
In the following narrative of the experience and leading events and circumstances of the life of the late Rev. W. Lees, the writer has been favoured with the particulars recorded by his own hand, and evidently written to remind himself of his responsibility and obligation to the God of all grace. He was the son of William and Mary Lees, of Bugsworth, in the parish of Glossop, in the county of Derby, and was born on the 20th of August, 1785. His parents removing to Tintwistle, he became, while young, an attendant on the ministry of the Rev. Mr. Hudson, dissenting minister of that place. He grew up in stature, but remained in total spiritual darkness, discovering only the inherent depravity of the heart. Having an ear for music he was induced to learn to sing, and this became his chief object of pursuit and pleasure. His delight in music brought him regularly to the house of God; and in this way a habit of regularly attending the worship of God was formed
As early as his thirteenth year he was the subject of deep convictions and alarming fears. These, he observes, were excited by reading the following lines of Dr. Watts :—
< Thou lovely chief of all my joys!
So vivid was the impression made on his mind, that he fancied himself summoned to the bar of God, and thought he heard his Judge pronounce the sentence, " Depart, ye cursed, into everlasting fire," &c. The fears and terrors produced on this occasion were of short duration, and he gradually relapsed into his former state of indifference and sin. But, through divine grace, by his regular attendance on the ministry of the gospel his mind was gradually enlightened and his heart •hanged ;. so that instead of finding plea
sure in sin, and in the society and pursuits of his sinful associates, he found only the wormwood of remorse and the gall of conscious guilt. Same portion of the divine word came with power to his mind: such as, "A companion of fools shall be destroyed;" and, "Come out from among them," &c, and awakened again his solicitude.
In the above state he continued for some years, sinning and repenting, without any clear and consistent views either of his own totally lost condition, or of the free grace of God in the salvation of sinners. Engaging to instruct a friend in reading and writing, a lesson was usually selected from the Scriptures; and while reading Luke xix. 40, " If these should hold their peace, the very stones would cry out," he was most deeply impressed with a sense of the hardness of his own heart, and thought the very stones might cry out against him. He quotes the following lines as expressive of what he felt :—
"The rocks could rend, the earth could quake;
He had not hitherto disclosed the state of his mind to any wise and experienced disciple; but, in the merciful providence of God, he became acquainted with a decidedly pious person, who, when he knew the state he was in, encouraged and directed him to flee, by penitence and prayer, to the Saviour, as the only ground of hope to a sinner; urging the subject by the danger of delay, and by the gracious invitations and promises of the gospel. He now sought to the Lord, and made fei vent supplications for mercy. He approached the throne of grace as a criminal, and cast himself on the free love of God in the gift of his Son, and on the merit of the Son for pardon, acceptance, and life, encouraged by the assurance, "that him that cometh he will in no wise 'cast out." He now found peace, and the service of God became his delight. He knew the joyful sound of the gospel— walked in the light of God's countenance, in his name rejoiced all the day, and in his righteousness was exalted.
But this happy frame of mind was sue, ceeded by fears lest he should be deceiving himself, which he dreaded more than any other thing. What induced this change in his views of his state, ami awakened his suspicions, was, "that he