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applied for baptism_to a Baptist But it was well, believing as thou didst, minister in the city. For a man in his

Like standard-bearer with thy flag unfurled,

To blazon on thy banner those brave wordsposition, and in a country where Bap- "I, Athanasius, against the world.” tists are so greatly in the minority as

Thy faith is mine; but that is not my theme; they are in Scotland, it must have 'Tis thine example I would preach to all; required a little moral courage to take

Whatever each believes and counts for true, this step. However, there can be no

Of things in heaven or earth, or great or small, doubt that, as the result, Dr. Wilson If he believe it, let him stand and say, subsequently enjoyed much more peace

Although in scorn a thousand lips are curled

“Though no one else believe, I'll hold my faith, of mind than if, like many, he had Like Athanasius, against the world.” trifled with his convictions of duty, and tried to satisfy himself with the But George Wilson, having become thought that if Dr. Alexander and a Christian, not only felt it his duty to other good and learned men were un- be baptized, but also to work for convinced as to the importance of bap- Christ. His daily work as a teacher tism, he surely might neglect it with- of science he endeavoured increasingly out serious blame. Let us all remem- to perform, not so much with a view to ber that we are responsible for acting the approbation of man, as from a up to our personal convictions. We regard to the will of God. “Duty," cannot throw the responsibility of as he said, “had become a big word to deciding what we ought to do upon him.” He began to ask himself, too, others. If all the world be on the what he could do for his Lord of a other side, yet if a still small voice more distinctively evangelistic characwithin whispers, “ This, after all, and ter. One method of doing good which not that, is the right way,” we ought suggested itself was writing letters of to follow conscience in preference to a religious character to invalids. He all mankind. The truth on this sub- had discovered that sick people who ject is well embodied in a little poem would not bear a word of religious of Dr. Wilson's; for, in addition to his advice from their neighbours in health, other accomplishments, he was a writer were more disposed to take kindly the of verses, some of which are full of admonitions of a person who was in a genuine poetic grace and fire. The manner one of themselves. Another subject of this poem is Athanasius, the good work to which he devoted himfamous Christian father who in the self was the delivery of lectures to fourth century stood forward as the Ragged Schools, Working Men's Instichampion of the doctrine of Christ's tutions, and the like. Occasionally, divinity. There is, as is well known, also, he gave addresses on religious a certain Creed, popularly, though in- subjects to the students of the Univercorrectly, ascribed to him. There is sity. As he remarked on one occasion, also a sentence or motto attributed to “ The students say they don't care him on better authority, in which the about addresses from ministers; but brave man declares that he, Athana- they'll listen to a lecturer on chemistry; sius, “ against the world” will set forth and I hope I shall succeed in speaking and maintain what he believes to be a seasonable word.” And seasonable, the true doctrine concerning the indeed, were the words which he was Trinity and the person of the Saviour. enabled to speak not unfrequently. It is this sentence which forms the Our limited space forbids our dwelltext of the verses in question. They ing upon the cheerfulness with which he are as follows:

bore affliction, the ready kindness with

which he responded to all applicants ATHANASIUS CONTRA MUNDUM.

for information or help, the affectionO ATHANASIUS! thy too subtle creed

ateness of disposition combined with Makes my heart tremble when I hear it read, gentle playfulness of manner, which And my flesh quivers when the priest proclaims

won for him the love of all who came God's doom on every unbeliever's head.

in contact with him. At his death all Yet I do honour thee for those brave words Against the heretic so boldly hurled,

Edinburgh seemed to mourn, as though “Though no one else believe, I'll hold my faith, each one had lost a personal frieud. I, Athanasius, against the world.”

A public funeral followed, attended by It was not well to judge thy fellow-men; sorrowing thousands of all classes. Thou wert a sinful mortal like us all;

“Never before," says Dr. Alexander, Vengeance is God's; none but Himself doth know On whom the terrors of His wrath will fall.

was such a tribute of respect and

а

General Baptist History.

175 love offered at the grave of any of our harmonizes with the fixity of Nature's citizens.”

laws. Let them cast aside preconWe end our paper as we began, by ceived notions and consider facts. Dr. remarking that in the instance of Dr. George Wilson, as we have seen, was Wilson, especially during the later all his life engaged as natural years of his life, we see religion and philosopher in the careful examination science in beautiful harmony. Long and study of facts, and in this examibefore bis day the world had seen them nation he displayed remarkable acuteblended in the cases of Boyle and ness and candour. Now what does he Newton, Pascal and Euler; and since say, this man thus trained, so fair, so his departure that company of great cautious and candid, -what is his tessouls has been joined by a kindred timony? "I have felt assured,” he spirit, that of Michael Faraday. In says, "of answers to prayer already." the presence of these names let no one Then to every honest doubter we say, deem it a mark of superior intelligence “Try, my brother, for yourself the to despise religion or its professors. power of prayer. Ask, and you shall

Christianity asks of doubters that receive; seek, and you shall find; they will examine her claims in the knock, and it shall be opened unto spirit of true science; that is, that you. Try for yourself in a spirit of instead of theorizing as to what candour, and with an earnest desire they suppose ought to be, they will for the truth only, and we have not reverently and candidly exainine facts. a moment's doubt as to the happy Say, that they find it difficult to see result." how the Christian doctrine of prayer

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GENERAL BAPTIST HISTORY.

REV. GEORGE CHEATLE.

GEORGE CHEATLE sustained the pastoral office in the G. B. church, Lombard Street, Birmingham, for more than fiftytwo years prior to the commencement of the labours of its present minister. He departed this life Feb. 24, 1870, and his remains were interred in the burying ground of the Baptist chapel, King's Heath, near Birmingham, on March 2. This last resting place the deceased had selected because the spot was rendered dear to him by his having in his younger days, amid much opposition and serious insult from the rude inhabitants, first introduced the preaching of the gospel, and then, with others, erected a chapel in which, summer and winter, he often proclaimed the uneearchable riches of Christ.

Mr. Cheatle was a native of Castle Donington, Leicestershire, and he became a member of the G. B. church there at the age of 16, being baptized in the river Trent, at Sawley, Sep. 7, 1806, by the Rev. B. Pollard, of Quorndon. His first visit to Lombard Street, Birmingham, was in Sep. 1809, and his temporary services were so much approved by the church that he was unanimously invited to the pastorate.

Guided by the Rev. T. Pickering, of Castle Donington, under whose kind care and instruction he had enjoyed great advantages, the invitation was accepted, and he commenced his stated labours at Birmingham, January, 1810.

At this period the chapel was exceedingly small and the attendants very few. In a pastoral epistle, written in 1860, he refers to the discouraging prospects under which he commenced his labours.-"Looking at the chapel as it was, standing in an isolated spot, far away from the main body of the inhabitants, I wondered that a place of worship should

have been erected there. The situation in which it was placed was a serious obstacle to the advancement of the cause. While other chapels stood surrounded by large populations, the one belonging to the General Baptists was erected in a locality comparatively deserted.” Ministers of the gospel will understand the feelings of a young man commencing his labours under such discouraging circumstances.

Mr. Cheatle often referred to this period, and frequently in his latter days humorously spoke of “the elderly ladies who came to chapel in the even

cause.

ing with their lanterns, walking in a tist body. The church commencing row to avoid a ditch by which they with 17 members has increased to 170. had to pass." Those to whom the spot This building cost £2300, and Mr. is known can scarcely imagine that Cheatle “had the honour" (as he fresuch was ever the case, thickly built quently said) of contributing the first upon as it is now.

£5 towards the amount. There is a Turning to the pastoral epistle before circumstance connected with the openreferred to, we read, " Who hath ing services which may be mentioned. despised the day of small things ?' Many who saw and heard will never Fifty years ago there were no school- forget the old man of nearly fourscore rooms belonging to our place of wor- years, as he ascended the platform, and ship; but now there are school-rooms, in tremulous voice offered prayer to and the chapel house standing at the Almighty God on behalf of this infant back of the chapel. The small place

As he sat among his friends of worship to which he came in the his deep anxiety and interest were year 1809 has, during his ministry, visibly evinced by the sublime pleabeen enlarged to its present size. sure which gleamed in his aged eye; Again he says: “I have preached 7000 and to those who knew his real worth times, and have baptized about 700 it appeared as though he were charmed persons, many of whom I visited in with the consciousness that he sat their afflictions, and followed to their there after a long life beneath the smile graves, who are doubtless now in of an inspecting and approving Deity, heaven. To God be all the praise.” and that now he could retire from

For many years the deceased labour to the calm repose of closing anxiously desired to see a second G. B.

years. church established in Birmingham, and Mr. Cheatle was not, nor did he ever he did what he could towards the pretend to be, a man of extraordinary realization of this object. The last talent, but his worth may be properly denominational attempt in this direc- estimated by any who desire to know tion resulted in the visit of the late it, and the power he possessed over Rev.J. Goadby and the Rev. H. Hunter the sympathies and affections of his not very many years ago. These gen- brethren in the ministry, and over tlemen were appointed a deputation Christians of all denominations among for the purpose of selecting a spot whom he so long lived, may be seen in whereupon to erect a suitable place of the pamphlet recording his jubilee serworship, and, accompanied by Mr. vices in 1860. He was emphatically a Cheatle, they inspected different locali- mau of peace, naturally quiet, and of ties; but on account of the high price timid disposition; and when any cirrequired for freehold land, the project cumstance arose in the church which was abandoned, notwithstanding the was likely to cause dissension and frequently expressed desire of the division, he could not rest day or night leading ministers and laymen of the until peace was restored; but when, Society that so desirable an object after serious thought, he became should be accomplished. This circum- assured that a certain course was right, stance, terminating as it did, caused and that in pursuing that course he Mr. Cheatle to give up all hope of see- was discharging his duty as a Christian ing the desire of his heart fulfilled, and minister, his natural quietude and he frequently expressed the opinion timidity left him, and he faced opposithat “if ever a second church is estab- tion as one whose mind was inured to lished in Birmingham, persons con- fortitude and vigilance, contemning the nected with the present church will danger of sacrificing personal friendhave to do it." Process of time has ship for the sake of the principles of proved that this opinion was correct. the gospel and the prosperity of Christ's About four years ago seventeen per- kingdom. To his firm adherence to sons who were (or had been connected principle, sustained by an unwavering with the first church were formed into confidence in the teaching of the a second, and by much patience and New Testament, may be attributed perseverance they have succeeded in his long standing in the honourable erecting a large place of worship in a position he occupied. The gospel was good position, and likely ultimately to the theme of his ministry, and he be an acquisition to the General Bap- preached it faithfully, regardless of

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fear or favour. He was earnest in his work, and always anxious for the conversion of souls. He writes: “I have ever endeavoured to fulfil the injunction, 'Preach the gospel to every creature,' prominently upholding the divinity of the Saviour's person, the merit of His sacrifice, the necessity of faith, and the importance of a holy life." It may be truly stated that the talepts of the deceased were devoted to the improvement of the condition and elevation of the character of his fellows, and, as far as he was able, be

reflected the light of instruction on the dark recesses of ignorance, and sown broadcast and thickly the seeds of comfort and consolation on the wild wastes of calamity. As he approached the solemn hour of death he did not fear, but spoke of “another and a better world” with joy; and when his mind was composed, his languid eye glistened as he quoted some favourite hymn or passage of Scripture. He left this world calmly, and his spirit rests in the bright mansions of eternal peace.

J. S. CHEATLE.

THE ART OF BLAMING.

men.

THE Romans of Republican times did not leave their blaming to be done by anybody. The most important part of the Censor's duties, and that which caused the office to be revered in the Roman Commonwealth, was the control and direction of private and public manners.

These Censors were the appointed conservators of virtue and morality, and were bound to maintain the old Roman habits and character both in the home and in the state. Censure was thus reduced to a system scarcely less exact than that for crime; and blame had its modes of expression prescribed with a minuteness of detail equalling the regulations for the sale of goods. In modern society every person is a critic, and is at liberty to follow caprice or conscience, or neither, in the exercise of the functions belonging to the self-assumed position. The smallest man in the smallest circle of life thinks himself an ordained critic, and treats his

varying and contradictory opinions as the offspring of an infallible inspiration; and the greatest man, instead of being shielded by his dignity and goodDess, is the more exposed to the poisoned shafts of unscrupulous foes. Seven-eighths of our conversation are heavily weighted with censure. Nothing is so easy, nothing so common, nothing so lawless, nothing so pleasant. Life shorn of the luxury of fault-finding were dull as an Irish bog, and repulsive as Arctic seas.

From this irregular blaming some men shrink as from the sharp and glittering edge of the surgeon's knife. They greatly prefer to be flattered and weak, than cut to the quick and made strong. Every voice that fails to echo the sweet music they sing to themselves is incurably dishonest and essentially wicked. Clothed from head to foot with the sensitive garment of selfconceit, you cannot touch them at any

point without starting their indignant remonstrance. They are impatient of the undisciplined host of fault-finders; and they are here! The idea is absurd. Let them seek some other clime. Men and societies grow out of their prejudices and vices by the bracing service of courageous censors who spare nothing weak, or low, or bad. The art of blaming has been well understood by the chief benefactors of

The “seers” have been masters of sarcasm. Flattery may pleasantly waft us into the fool's paradise of self-satisfaction, but severe exposure of faults and whirl. winds of obloquy are much more likely to put us within the gates of the kingdom of heaven. He who has on His head now the “many crowns" of dominion wore here the “crown of thorns." Incontinent blame is better for most men than the best regulated praise. There are," says Lord Bacon, “So many false points of praise, that a man may justly hold it in suspect." Augustine writes in his ninetythird epistle, “Every one who spares you is not your friend, nor every one who strikes you your enemy; it is better to love with fidelity than to deceive by good nature."

And a higher authority than either embraces every extreme when He says, Blessed are ye when men shall say all manner of evil against you falsely for

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my sake.”

Of course the benefit derivable from this enforced and painful discipline depends in no small degree upon the spirit and habits of the men who are subjected thereto. If a man will make up his mind to look bravely, honestly, and without selfish bias into the heaviest censure, he will often find, not indeed a satisfactory test of his praiseworthiness, but at least a “side. light" that may warn him of approaching dangers, or guide him to forgotten and

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unseen good. Sometimes discomfort will disappear upon the merest inspection of its cause, and the dark cloud of condemnation give place to the rainbow of a promising future. The lively squirrel is not abashed or less sportive because of the scowl of the crawling sloth. The true artist gives not up his brush at the instance of a stone-blind critic; nor does a man change his plans or bate his ardour at the bray of an ignorant zealot. He asks “ whence it comes," and the answer is enough. What can you expect from the savage spleen of a dyspeptic dolt? There is no music in the shriek of the hyæna, but it is natural.

Moreover the blamed man knows that opinion is more variable than the wind, and that it is no rare thing for rasping satire to give place to the sweet cadences of praise. Oliver Cromwell is already canonized, and who will say that our children will not hold Henry VIII. to have been an exemplary saint. I heard a man berate another exceedingly last week, who, if he survive his erring friend, will be the first, I doubt not, to cast immortelles apon his coffin. There is only one court from whose judgment there is no appeal, and whose sentences are not given to change. Let a man justify himself there, and he will not always think it necessary or wise to explain and justify himself to men, but will say, amid storms of scornful censure, as he patiently seeks to turn even the tem. pest to good account, “It is a small matter to me to be judged of man's judgment. He that judgeth me is the Lord."

But the efficacy of censure as a means of improvement is determined more by the spirit and aim and method in which it is offered than by anything else. Three rules at least should therefore be diligently observed by such as desire to turn to the best account their exercises in the art of blaming. First, the spirit of all profitable censure is the spirit of love. Unless blaming is baptized with tender pity and yearning affection for the erring, it will, however just, end in indignant talk and general displeasure.

No new purposes will be quickened into life. No holy aspirations born. It will scathe and wither like the lightning, not refresh and fertilize as the dew. To discharge the difficult duty with gracefulness is one of the highest achievements of sanctified hearts. Robertson truly says, “ To blame is easy enough; with some it is all of a piece with the hardness of their temperament; but to do this delicately, how shall we learn that? I answer, Love; and then say what you will, men will bear anything if love be there. Nothing but love can teach us how

to understand such a sentence as this• He looked round about him in anger, being grieved at the hardness of their hearts.'”—Lectures on Corinthians, p. 333.

The one aim of all profitable blame is improvement. The critic is little if he is merely the judge. He has not performed half his work. He is meant to be an instructor. Righteous censure is a wellaimed and disinterested endeavour to promote what is the truest, and best, and loveliest. It seeks perfection and withholds disapprobation if nothing is to be gained by it beyond hearing the critic talk. Its aim is noble and unselfish, and it scorns to make a man an offender merely for a word or to punish him for an illustration, when the principle he enunciates is sound and good. With every sentence shaped to such a worthy end, and saturated with such a loving spirit, fault-finding becomes what it ought always to be, a “means" or channel “of grace;" even of that grace of God which teaches us that

denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly in this present world."

But even if we have attained these excellencies it will be well for us to observe the third canon in this art, which is that the mould in which all profitable censure is cast is that of self-remembrance. How much blame would be hushed in perpetual silence by healthy obedience to this simple maxim! Stillness would settle o'er & thousand circles now noisy with the din of censure. Sentences that have gone forth against men would be instantly recalled. If, as Burns sings, some one had

“The gift to gie us, To see ourselves as others see us," it would instantly gag myriads of critics and greatly moderate the vehemence of those who might feel themselves called to speak. Have you not heard men blaming others who only needed for a single moment a faithful mirror before them, or one leaf of memory turned over, to force them to pray for the earth to open and swallow them up ? When Oliver Cromwell was beseiging the Castle of Edin. burgh, he was himself beseiged by hosts of letters from the Presbyterian ministers, who were insisting that he was something very bad indeed, and ought to reverse his policy in accordance with their directions. In answer to these divines Cromwell wrote a letter in which this passage occurs, “ Dear brethren, I beseech you think it possible you may be wrong." This is a great discovery to make in any department of life, but in none more important than in the art of blaming.

J. CLIFFORD.

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