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and nobly, which means trading, dining, sleeping to the merely necessary degree, and-ah me! the sentence must stand there unfinished; let me close it with a solemn rythmic word of Goethe's—
"Choose well; your choice is
As a broken column arrests the which might heedlessly pass the shaft complete and beautiful from base to capital, so we have been holden for a pause by that inarticulate sentence; there our minds have stood together, let us cheerfully hope not without thoughts deep, humble, and earnest. We'll go on. All phenomena declare the glory of God; to study them with reverence and love for Him is to ascend with joyous, triumphant steps the illimitable heights of our Creator's wisdom. How few are going up! I wonder what numerical ratio the real observers bear to the human race. We boast of our civilization, sound paans of self-laudation over what we venture to call our subduing of the earth; in short, we are always taking off our hats to the present age, almost all of us. But now divide all human achievements by the millions of men whose successive opportunities have extended through six millenniums, and if the dividend has made us proud, the lacking quotient may humble us: you see the divisor is not contained. He that bas eyes let him look. At this late date diseases assail us which are only faithful witnesses against our blindness to divine laws; forces appear antagonistic which better known should find to be our natural allies; perpetually recurring accidents by land and sea point to ignorance as the mother of destruction; while innumerable secrets of nature are secrets only for want of observers. Probably our civilization is barbarism itself compared with the results which might be obtained by one generation of unanimous watchers. So, and so near to us, lies vast undiscovered good with glories of the Divine Artificer, blank, dumb to man, while God is waiting for observers. And, too, for observers of His Word.
Stars of truth and duty beam on in that firmament unseen of men. What thousands of good people would be amazed to know how much of that Book has never entered into their be
liefs. Now there is our friend Orthodox producing his creed; I almost wish he would burn it: at best it is expressed in the exact language of Scripture, and then it is a collection more or less brief of his favourite texts, tending for the most part to fix the limits of his faith and knowledge, which should be ever expanding to coincide with the vast area of revelation. I know a man so satisfied with being able to point out the Pole-star, the Great Bear, Orion, and the Pleiades, that probably he will never recognise another constellation as long as he lives; I call him the man with an astronomical creed. What creed has helped us to a radiant view of the character of Christ, that sole spotless glory of humanity? Yet by so much as that character shines on, in, and from us, we have attained to Christianity by so much and no more. Belief is by life, according to an old derivation I found the other day. We may not be satisfied with a few imperfect propositions plus a few conventional observances; we have the Son of God to study in those Testaments; we know Him, and reflect Him on mankind to our utmost, else our religions are shadows all. "Looking unto Jesus," saith the Record; but many are familiar with His work who dimly perceive His character, and look with faith to His cross with scarcely a glimpse of Him as Immanuel still, or as the Priest and Forerunner in glory. Relatively to us Christ is a glory that grows while we gaze, and God is waiting for observers.
One point more and we must take our several ways.
Christianity, as Max Müller says, has blotted the word barbarian out of the dictionary, and has written the word brother in its place. That other word, humanity, to be looked for in vain through Plato or Aristotle, is the product of our religion. That religion tells us that all races are of one blood, the offspring of God, with a cross of hope standing in their midst benignly related to all our God has spoken to us in the interests of humanity. "Preach the gospel to every creature," (which may be called the great unobeyed commandment now almost two thousand years old). When shall we all wake to the meaning of these things? When shall we all see the
grand purpose of the Gospel, and the splendid place of the church in relation to the lost members of our great family? Christ loves humanity because it is human; that is in His character, and it must be in ours. Cost what it may, we who love Him must take the foremost place in moral and spiritual influence, and with a benevolence impossible to a worldly philosophy, assume the direction of the affairs of men in all that relates to their highest welfare. The church wants only unity and character to be the leader of a lost world up to the
throne of God. With all her manifold imperfections she is the best and brightest institution standing in this saddest of God's worlds, and great is her unfaithfulness to herself, and the Son of Man, if the world does not know and feel it. Her peerless place, her Christlike character, her diviner duties, all are shining in the Book: Eternal Love is waiting for observers: for God's sake, for the world's, and for thine own, assume, attain, and do; the evening shadows are upon us even now. Adieu, good reader; by and by we may meet this way again.
GENERAL BAPTIST HISTORY-GEORGE CARLOW.
WOODBRIDGE is a small but well-built and compact town about seven miles east of Ipswich. In this quiet and somewhat secluded place assembled a General Baptist congregation. One of its teachers, George Carlow, is of local celebrity, although his name is not found in any Baptist records. We know little of his personal history. He lived in a house of his own, where he carried on the trade of a broker. He was buried in his own garden, and on a tombstone erected to his memory is the following inscription :
"Here lieth ye body of George Carlow, who departed this life 24th day of March, 1738. Aged 76 years.
Weep for me, dear friends, no more,
Good friends, for Jesus' sake forbear
On the second stone:
"The covetous live poor to die rich; but what a mistake and misaying it is, to say such a man died worth so many thousands, when he left it all behind him. He had been rich indeed if in the sence of the Apostle he had sent it to heaven aforehand. It is probable he died the poorer for leaving so much behind him; and indeed no man dies rich unless rich in grace, in faith, and good works while he lived; but ye rich depart as poor and naked as any, and leave their wealth to others. 1 Tim. chap. 6th, verses 7, 8, 18, 19."
This good man left a rent charge on his own premises, the amount to be expended in bread, and given to the poor every 2nd of February in each year. Accordingly it is distributed on that day by one of the church wardens, or some one deputed by them. This distribution on Candlemas-day is made from the tombstone in his own garden according to his own directions. The
original will of this Baptist teacher was found some years ago in the parish chest. From it we learn that he left a sum of money to the ancient General Baptist church in Mill Yard, Goodman's Fields, London.
Carlow was of opinion that the seventh day of the week was to be perpetually observed as a Sabbath. In consequence of Mr. Ward, a Congregational minister of the same town, advancing views on the question of the observance of the Sabbath, as at that time it was usual, Carlow published a book of 222 pages, 12mo, 1724, entitled, Truth Defended; or, Observations on Mr. Ward's Expository Discourses from the 20th chapter of Exodus concerning the Sabbath."
This plea for the seventh-day Sabbath was reprinted at Stonington, Connecticut, in 1802, and at New York, by the American Sabbath Tract Society, in 1847, in 18mo, under the title of "A Defence of the Sabbath, in reply to Ward on the Fourth Commandment." The American editors say in their preface" He was evidently a man of plain parts, not schooled in the rules of logic, but learned in the Scriptures. From that fountain of true wisdomthe word of God-he had imbibed a spirit which gives pungency and heartsearching character to his writings, not often found in books of controversy.'
It was a very pleasing idea of Addison's, that "there are probably greater men who lie concealed among the species, than those who come out and draw on themselves the eyes and admiration of mankind."
TRADE PROSPECTS: MATERIAL AND MORAL.
THERE are several features in the prospects of British trade at the present moment of special hopefulness. Reliable symptoms of an approaching and gradually increasing prosperity appear both in the general condition of our commerce, and in the reports made by the representatives of the leading branches of industry. That dubious tone with which we have been familiar for some years past has given place to healthy, though not jubilant, anticipation. The trade circulars for 1870 are more cheerful than they have been since the beginning of the "distress." The cotton, woollen, and iron districts are already in greater activity, and have the promise of growing demands. Lancashire is steadily reviving.
Sheffield speaks of decided improvement. Our export trade has extended itself, and the further remission of taxes is certain. So that we may hope that the winter of our trade is past and gone, and healthy and joyful spring near at hand.
The moral aspect of our commercial life is even more reassuring. We have not passed through the fiery furnace of national trial in vain. The sanctions of God's eternal laws, as real and inevitable in trade as elsewhere, have had, in some measure at least, their desired effect; and Our enforced obedience to those laws cannot fail of its appointed reward. Recent commercial legislation bears witness to a keener sense of right and justice amongst us, and to the prevalence of a stronger desire to check rash speculation and to suppress unfair dealing. The Act abolishing the imprisonment of debtors, save in certain exceptional cases, came into force on the first of January of this year, along with that counterpart statute, making the debtor liable to his creditor until he has paid half of his debt. These are outward signs" of an "inward" advance of this great "shop-keeping" people in that righteousness which exalteth a nation. The old Roman severity towards the impecunious debtor has no longer the countenance of English law. No "Barnacles" will again be made a "prisoner in Whitecross Street for twenty-seven years simply and solely because he owes to another a sum of money which he finds it impossible to pay." That flagrant absurdity is at
last annihilated. Debtors, moreover, are no longer all of the same moral hue in the eyes of an English court of justice. The "precious" will cease to be confounded with the "vile"-for it is now cast upon the judge to draw a clear and broad line of distinction between the unfortunate business man suddenly overtaken by calamity, and the unprincipled dealer guilty of manifest fraud. May we not "expect great things" from the righteous use of this winnowing fan? Confidence in trading -the very spring and source of prosperity-will grow steadily and surely under the New Bankruptcy Act. Invisible dividends will gradually cease to be declared. The secresy and trickery so often associated with "composition deeds" can have no place. Carelessness and rashness will be checked in their birth; and as the sense of security becomes stronger and stronger, the supple limbs of Industry will be unfettered, and breathing the bracing atmosphere of righteousness with a deep and full inspiration, she will soon regain her wonted strength and surpass even her former achievements.
Now, since the moral standard of our legislation is never higher than that of the really governing portion of British Society, we may accept it as an augury of good that it has become possible to enact these beneficial measures. "Social necessities and social opinion are always more or less in advance of law." It is the mission of the church of the Lord Jesus Christ to infuse her lofty principles into society, to pervade commercial life with her just and generous spirit, and by creating a necessity for purer legislation, first to inspire, mould, and fashion the laws of the land; and next, by those very laws (amongst other means) to lift to a higher level those, who lacking, or destroying conscience, fail to rise above deceit and crime. May the Lord God, "who giveth us power to get wealth," enable us to transact our business in the spirit of inflexible justice and unselfish care for others, and so fill us with His grace that it may be the delight of our hearts to consecrate our gains to His glory in the various ministries of love and mercy to which He has called us. J. CLIFFORD.
THE LATE MR. SAMUEL WRIGHT, OF LEICESTER. Substance of an Address at the Friar Lane Chapel, April 4th, 1869, by the Rev. J. C. Pike.
IT is not often that the pastor of a church has the opportunity of addressing his friends under circumstances similar to our own this day. A father in Israel has been taken away,-one who for nearly fifty-eight years, or during the lives of two generations, had been a consistent and honourable member of this church, and who for nearly forty-two years had shared the duties and responsibilities of the deacon's office. Mr. Wright was born at Leicester, April, 1785. He died, March 19th, 1869, being within a few days of eighty-four years of age. I find, on searching the records of our old church books, that our departed friend was baptized here, with three others, on Nov. 17, 1811. The minister of the church at the time was the Rev. John Deacon, who, a few months before, had resumed the pastoral office. The deacons were John Wright, John Johnson, and Frederick Deacon. I am not aware that John Wright was any relative of Samuel Wright's, and I have not ascertained exactly how long he had been a deacon; he was one in 1807, and continued in office until his death in 1815. Thus, through the greater part of the present century the name of " Wright" has been familiar among the officebearers of this church.
The first mention that I find of Mr. S. Wright's name, after joining the church, is in December, 1815. It had been resolved unanimously to adopt the plan of weekly subscriptions for defraying the necessary expenses of the church; suggesting to us that "there is nothing new under the sun," unless it were in the sterner methods adopted by our fathers in carrying out their decisions. For the above plan was not only recommended to the members, but it was required that every one who was able, should contribute his quota toward these expenses. Six collectors were appointed, of whom Mr. Wright was one. From that day to the last day of his life he ever took a lively interest in the financial welfare and prosperity of the church.
At that period it was customary to bury the dead in the graveyard adjoining the chapel. For many years Mr.
Wright sustained the office of sexton and chapel-keeper, but relinquished it in the year 1827 that he might serve the church in the office of deacon. Twelve friends were nominated on the occasion, and three were elected from the number. The votes were as follows-S. Wright, 78; R. Senior, 50; Joseph Harrison, 42. These figures sufficiently speak for the estimation in which our brother was held by the church forty-two years ago; nor had they reason to repent their choice. Through all these years he has served the church diligently and faithfully. He used the office of a deacon well, and purchased to himself a good degree.
My acquaintance with Mr. Wright only dates back for ten years. My further remarks will apply to this period. I shall speak of our esteemed friend and father as I have known him. I do not suppose that he was perfect. He was human, as we all are. Considering the troublous times through which the church had passed during some of the years of his connection with it, it would have been strange indeed if all men had spoken well of him. I can also imagine that there was at times an apparent austerity and harshness in his manner that proved displeasing to some; but I think any thing of this kind was in appearance, rather than in reality; and for myself I can testify that I never heard from him a discourteous or an unkind word. His demeanour toward me was uniformly respectful and considerate. I have heard of lordly deacons in some churches, but am thankful that it has not been my lot to be associated with such. It was the delight of our friend to minister in any way that he could to the comfort of his pastor, and to co-operate with him in his plans for usefulness. Let me mention one way in which he ever caused me great encouragement and joy. He was always in his place. He never ran away after novelty; rarely was he absent from a Sabbath service for nearly sixty years; and at the prayer meeting, the weekly lecture, the deacons' meeting, the church meeting, he was there regular as the day, punctual to the
minute! Whoever was absent, I was sure that he would be present. Many a day must pass before I can forget his cordial greetings as I entered the vestry on the Sabbath morning and evening, and ere I can lose the impression of his familiar and venerable form in this sanctuary. Would that our churches were more largely composed of such reliable men and women.
Mr. Wright did not often speak much about his own experience. Any one who heard him pray would feel assured that he was a man who walked with God. Many of you can remember how fervently he pleaded at the throne of grace for the peace and prosperity of Zion, and for the conversion of sinners, especially any unsaved ones among the families of this church and congregation.
A month ago to-day when I entered the vestry I perceived that he was very hoarse. I said, "You will not be able to give out the hymns to-day," and offered to relieve him, little dreaming that we should never again hear his voice in this place. He attended at the Lord's supper in the afternoon, and that was the last time he was permitted to meet with us. The glorified Saviour was represented as saying to one and another of the guests at His table, "What is thy petition ?" and one of the answers suggested was, "Lord, that thou wilt keep me to the end, and in death receive me to thyself." In reference to our departed
MR. H. VARLEY, AT the request of some friends who heard Mr. Varley's address at the Baptist Union meeting at Leicester, and hoped that his earnest words might be useful in Nottingham, this wellknown Christian evangelist visited our town on Dec. 7th and following days, and conducted a series of special religious services.
On Tuesday evening Mr. Varley preached in Broad Street chapel, the place being crowded to overflowing, and many going away unable to obtain admission. Vigorous efforts having been made to secure the attendance of working people, many of this class were present, and Mr. Varley's earnest and faithful appeals, now serious and solemn, and now enlivened by homely
friend, "Even while we were yet speaking, the Lord heard." A few days of lingering affliction, and he is gone; "Absent from the body, present with the Lord." He was unable to say much during his last illness. This is a case in which we care not to know how the servant of Jesus died, we know how he lived.
I would invite the special attention of young men to this example of Mr. Wright. See what religion would do for you, and see what it would enable you to accomplish in spite of every disadvantage. It needs not wealth, nor rank, nor position, nor learning, to secure great usefulness in the church of Christ. Mr. Wright was a needlemaker by trade; before his conversion he used to occupy a considerable portion of the Sabbath in taking out his work, but as soon as he was brought to Christ he resolved to make the sacrifice, and abandon all Sunday trading. His particular branch of trade suffered great reverses, so that to the end of life he was comparatively a poor man. He had, however, a large heart, and a liberal spirit. He was rich in faith and good works. He did what he could; and now, in a good old age, he has left the world respected, mourned for, beloved! Children, and children's children, revere his memory and call him blessed. The history of Samuel Wright is another illustration and verification of the divine promise, "Them that honour me I will honour."
illustration and touches of quiet bumour, evidently made a great impression. On the following evening Mr. V. preached in the large and beautiful Independent chapel in Castle Gate, and on Thursday evening in Stoney Street chapel. On these occasions, also, the congregations were large and attentive; on Thursday evening in particular a very serious feeling appeared to be awakened.
On the afternoons of Wednesday and Thursday, meetings for prayer and conference were held in the George Street and Broad Street school-rooms. To these gatherings professing Christians were more especially invited. They were quiet, solemn services, and all present felt it good to be there.