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the Christian name. To thirst after pre-eminence in the Christian church, is to oppose the Messiah, and to undermine his authority. Antichrist was to sit in the temple of God, and to claim divine honour. He was to be supported by the kings of the earth, was to traffic in the souls of men, and was to murder the servants of Jesus. These things are contrary to the spirit of the gospel.
This is the portrait of national churches, as appears from the united testimony of history and experience, compared with the predictions of the New Testament. Our nation complains, and justly, of the persecutions which they have suffered; but their persecutors were either inerely nominal Christians, or their minds were perverted by their connexions. The despised followers of Jesus have been persecuted, as well as they, by antichristian societies armed with the power of the magistrate. Justice, however, obliges me to acknowledge, that there are many persons, both ministers and private Christians, in religious establishments, who would be an honour to any church.
M. de Bethune. Very true, Sir; and in their present situation we must let them continue, until God in his provi. dence shall show them, what an essential difference there is between a society engaged in an unlawful connexion with the kings of the earth, and congregations gathered out of the world by the Spirit and word of God, and united toge ther for the purposes of hearing the Scriptures illustrated and enforced, of observing the institutions of Christ, and of reproving, comforting, and watching over each other. The former maintains the authority of the magistrate in religious matters : the latter regulate their faith and practice by the word of God, and in spiritnal concerns submit to no one but the great head of the church.
M, de Bethune invited us all to reside with him the whole summer at his farm near New-London. This invi.. tation I believe we shall accept, as Mrs. Levi and her daughter, as well as myself, wish to see more of the country. Mr. Levi will not have it in his power to accompany
us; but will be employed in looking out for an eligible situation.
I intend to send all these letters bound up in one parcel, by the first vessel that shall sail for London. I beg the favour of your sending, as soon as you receive them, a letter by the packet, directed for me, at Mr. Thomas Paterson's, Wall-street, New-York. Mr. Levi has temporary apartments at his house, till he determines where to settle.
I need not add, that I wish to receive all the informa. tion you can give me concerning yourself, your niece, and my family.
I am, dear Madam,
l'rom Miss Eusebia Neville to Mrs. Worthington,
DEAR MADAM, In my last letter I informed you that M. de Bethune, the friend of my dear brother, had invited Mr. Levi, his family, and myself, to visit him at his farm, which is about seven miles from New-London. Mr. Levi could not accompany us; but he wished us to accept the invitation.
Mr. Bethune, (for so that gentleman calls himself in this country,) was to return in three days. At his earnest request, we accompanied him in a carriage provided for the purpose. The country through which we passed was fruitful, but not in so high a state of cultivation as France or England. The price and rent of land are so low, that the farmers will not take the trouble to make it produce the most it possibly can; but they occupy a great deal of land, and cultivate it badly. Compared, therefore, with the English, they may be called negligent farmers. This is not, however, universally the case,
In two days we arrived at Mr. Bethune's. His house is
large and convenient, but plain and unadorned. Mrs. Bethune is a wife worthy of such a husband. When we entered this happy dwelling, he said, My love, I have brought you three visitors, whom I recommend to your notice as the friends of Jesus Christ. Your friends, my dear, answered she, cannot be unwelcome guests. But you must. tell me who this lady is, continued Mr. Bethune, (pointing to me :) you have never seen her before ; but you knew and esteemed her brother. She immediately embraced me, and said, I am most happy in seeing the sister of Mr. William Neville.--I told this good lady that my name was indeed Neville, and that I had no doubt but that ours would be a growing friendship: to which she kindly assented. Mr. Bethune briefly related the principal events of my history down to my acquaintance with the family of Mr. Levi. She heard the narration with tears of joy. It had the same effect on a son, about ten years of age, and on two daughters, one about eleven, and the other about fourteen. These, with a son who is married, and settled in Kentucky, are the whole of the family.
The attention paid to Mrs. and Miss Levi was the most polite and respectful.
After a slight supper, family worship was performed with great solemnity. One of the young people read a chapter out of the prophets; another a psalm; and the third a chapter out of the New Testament. Mr. Bethune concluded with prayer.
We then retired to our apartments. My room is neat and comfortable. I awoke early in the morning, and was dressed by five o'clock, being desirous of beholding the beauties of nature, the sight of which always affords me the most exquisite pleasure.
Though it was so early, I found Mrs. Bethune and her maids in the dairy, whither many large and well-filled pails were bringing to be converted into butter and cheese, of which articles a great quantity is made in the states of Connecticut and Rhode-Island. Mrs. Bethune took me into her orchard, and her kitchen garden. In the former I
saw abundance of fruit-trees. Such as are raised in Eng. land against the wall, with much care and attention, are standards here, and bear plenty of excellent fruit.
We then went to see the cows, (a great number of which had been brought to be milked) and the other inhabitants of the farm-yard. The sight of the turkeys, geese, ducks and hens, gave me much pleasure These are honest people, Madam, said I : I love their company, and am happy in their friendship, which is never insincere, -A drawing-room, replied this good lady, would suffer ex ceedingly in the eyes of a wise man, if the sincerity of those who compose it were to be measured by that of my honest domestics.
I would not detain Mrs. Bethune any longer from her family concerns, but told her that I was going to write to London. A servant is come to inform me that breakfast is ready
I am, dear Madam,
From Miss Eusebia Neville to Mrs. Worthington.
DEAR MADAM, When we left New-York, Mr. Paterson, who has great acquaintance among masters of ships, promised, that if a vessel should sail for London before my return, he would give me information in time.
I have received from him the pleasing information that the Mentor is to sail for London in ten days. Mr. Paterson assures me, that I may depend on the captain's care of whatever he may be entrusted with. I have told Mr. Bethune, that if he has any letter to send to England, I can enclose it. He replied, that he should certainly embrace the opportunity of writing to my brother. I intend to enclose the letter with mine, and to leave it to you to di
rect it. My beloved brother and my dear Miss Barnwell, will consider what I have written to you as intended equally for them. I would not, on any account, have my honoured parent or my sister, see these letters, as I fear they would only increase their indignation, and together with it their guilt.
I feel no resentment against those who have injured me, but daily pray for them. Perhaps my dear parent may have forgotten what he terms my heresy and disobedience, and may now be mourning too intensely for my loss ; especially when he reflects how active a part he took against
But I hope that my short letter, written on shipboard, reached you, and that he by this time knows that I am alive, and able to provide for myself. This was all which it was proper for me to say, till I was out of the reach of force, or even of persuasion.
This country delights me more and more. The clear ness of the sky, the serenity of the weather, the beauty of all the natural objects around me, the great abundance of the necessaries of life, and the comfortable situation of the industrious poor, exhilarate my spirits.
Mrs. Bethune, who is a native of America, prefers it to Europe. As we were walking in the kitchen garden, I asked her a variety of questions about the country, and have received from her a great deal of information.
It astonishes me, Madam, said I, that such friends of li. berty as the Americans are, should tolerate slavery.
Where the love of liberty, answered Mrs. Bethune, flows from self-love, they who are the most strenuous for their own liberty are the most careless about that of others. But the true friend of liberty cannot but detest slavery. It is painful to him even to behold that oppression which it is not in his power to alleviate.
This morning, after prayer, Mrs. Levi said to Mr. Bethune, As you were born in France, a place overrun with superstition and infidelity, pray, Sir, how came you to embrace sentiments so different from those which prevail in catholic countries?