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commensurate with its vast extent, and to enlarge the sphere of my operations. "I see, already, in spirit, mountains derart, hills remove, and a high-way p.eparing for the increase of the word of God, both far and near; for He who has helped us will continue to bless his word and his work. Obstacles, which, like gigantic mountains, appal our eyes, are by him wafted out of sight; as a feather is breathed away, and as an atom vanishes before the wind.
"From June, 1816, to June, 1818, there have been distributed by me 101,195 copies of my New Testament; and if the edition, with large print, had been ready a year sooner, 50,000 copies more would have been issued*.
"It is my earnest request to the British and Foreign Bible Society, that they would enable me to have at all times at my disposal 36,000 copies of my Testament, half small and half large print, which, together with carriage and binding, would cost about 21667. sterling. This sum I would entreat their generosity to assign in the name of Jesus Christ, for the salvation of immortal souls, in order that the work of God, which is also your work, may not for a moment be obstructed in its way to greater and wider extension.
"Every thing which you have had the goodness to communicate to me of the wonders which God has wrought by means of the Bible Society, has highly delighted me, and filled my heart with gratitude to God. Indeed, who is there that does not here observe the finger of God? He does wondrous things, praised be his Name! That important prophecy, The Gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations, and then shail the end come,' is developing betore our eyes. Yes, verily, their sound went into all the earth, and their words unto the ends of the world.'
"I might have sent you a volume of copies of letters; but having had only one clerk in my office for these several days, he has been occupied with important correspondence: I have, there
To enable this indefatigable distri butor to keep the stock of German Testaments required, the Committee of the British and Foreign Bible Society have voted him a farther grant of 20001.; he having previously distributed 233,341 copies !
fore, made him copy but a few. However, the echo of every letter is this;Fruits of godliness, of repentance, of regeneration, of the knowledge of God and of Christ; comfort, peace, and consolation, are produced, every where, by this seed of God sown in hope. An altogether new spirit is observable in many schools among the children, through whom the parents also are made acquainted with this book of books. To thousands and thousands to whom the New Testament was before unknown, it has now become the greatest treasure, and the most preCIOUS jewel.
My church is frequented by many Jews, and numbers of them are fond of reading my New Testament.
"Several pious ladies labour effec tually in dispensing blessings by means of the New Testament, with which I furnish them."
From aVery Reverend Dean in Norway.
"In my parish, containing about 3700 souls, there have been collected, during the past and the present year, above 200 rix dollars, specic (about 50%. sterling), and as much in proportion to the population in the adjacent neighbourhood.
"On the Jubilee of the Reformation, celebrated the 31st of October, and the 2d of November, I encouraged my congregation to contribute to our Bible Society. I observed, with lively emotion, men, women, youths of both sexes, children, poor, rich, all of them lay down their gift upon the altar of the Lord, for the distribution of the holy Scriptures. I perceived also the poor widow come with her mite. I saw the innocent little ones upon their father's or mother's arms, lay down their gift; and the words of Jesus- Out of the mouth of babes and sucklings thou hast perfected praise; and his affectionate call Let these little ones come unto me, for theirs is the kingdom of God,'→ forcibly struck my mind
"At the Jubilee we received in this manner eighty-one dollars, specie (about 207.): the remainder we received before by subscription.
"From the Central Committee at Christiana, we now expect a general list of what has been collected in the whole kingdom.
"You expressed a wish in your said letter, that I had disposed of a part of the ninety New Testaments. This has
also been attended to; and I have sold at a moderate price, for about thirtytwo rigsbank dollars (abont 16s. 6d.), for which I have credited our Bible Society. The gratuitous distribution of so many, arises from an idea I enter tained, that the most indigent, who had nothing to pay with, but still are able to read, and eagerly desirous to possess the word of the Lord, ought not to be denied this precious gift; the more so, as I remembered the words of our Saviour; Freely ye have received, freely give.' (Matt. x. 8.) Another reason was, the ninety New Testaments which, through your kind attention, I received, and acknowledged in my letter of the 10th of January, 1816, I looked, and still look upon, as a gift fallen from Heaven; and wherever I have travelled in my deanery, I have directed the attention of the people to the object of the British and Foreign Bible Society, for sending the word of God even to ns, who are living between Norway's barren rocks.
"I judged I should best meet the wishes of a Society, united for such ends, by distributing the most of them to the poorest; my heart being impress ed with the thought-The Gospel is preached to the poor.""
From the Rev. Dr. Robert Pinkerton.
66 Memel, July 10, 1818. "Since I entered the government of Writepsk, not at a great distance from Polotsk, I have distributed about 70 copies of the Hebrew New Testament among the Jews. I could have given away many hundred copies more, had I possessed them. In general, I first examined the person who made application for a copy, whether he was able to make use of it, by making him translate to me a few verses of the fifth chapter of St. Matthew, the first chapter of St. John, or the first chapter of the Hebrews; and when I found that he understood what he read, then I bestowed the precious gift. In several instances I was offered money for the copies. The number of those Jews who are capable of understanding the Hebrew Testament, particularly about Witepsk, Orsha, Skloff, Minsk, and Wilna, is far greater than I formerly believed; and there seems to be a general readiness among them to accept of it, and an impelling curiosity to read the doctrines of Christ and his Apostles, in the Hebrew language. One of them in the town of
Borisoff, who had been in possession of a Hebrew Testament for some mouths before I came that way, told me, that neither they nor their fathers had ever read those things before. Others inform me, that, having now read the greater part of the New Testament, they were capable of judging of its contents; and, though they could not yet agree with its doctrines in many parts, they were highly pleased with its morality.
"Surely nothing is so well calculated to remove the prejudices of the Jews against our religion, as enabling them to understand it in its genuine purity and simplicity.
"I have repeatedly reproached myself for having done so little, in my former travels, for bringing the consolatory doctrines of the Gospel to the wards of the sick in hospitals, and the cells of criminals in prisons. It is true, at the formation of Societies, I have more than once recommended these abodes of distress and misery, as places which ought to share the first fruit of their benevolence; yet, personally, I have seldom been in any of them But it is never too late to form a good resolution. On leaving St. Petersburg, the last time, I resolved to visit the prisons and hospitals, on my future travels, to supply their unfortunate and suffering inhabitants with the word of God. Accord ingly, from St. Petersburg to this place, I visited five provincial prisons, which contained 515 of the most unfortunate of our race. In each cell or apartment, I commonly found one or more, who were capable of reading to their fellowprisoners. With tears of gratitude, they usually received the precious boon of God's word. In the twelve hospitals which I visited, I found 1015 sick, in every stage of the numerous diseases to which sinful man is here subjected. How precious was the gift of God's word to these sufferers! In every ward we usually left one, and sometimes two copies. In three poor's houses, I found 486 aged and indigent, whom we also supplied with the bread of life-the treasures of Divine love."
ment. What a deep impression the sight of the Bible seemed to make on the three hundred and nine criminals, whom I visited in five different prisons! In almost every cell, some of them were so much touched at the sight and reception of a copy of the word of God, that they literally wet their chains with their tears. The sight of a stranger with the word of God in his hand, and the message of peace on his lips, seemed powerfully to affect these most hardened and unfortunate of the human race: many of them wept bitterly, probably at the recollection of the days of their youth, when they read the Bible at school, or in the habitation of their parents, but suffered not its principles to sink deep into their hearts. The keepers of the prisons themselves, and a member of the Society who went with me, frequently wept like children. The former said, that they never had beheld the prisoners so much affected on any occasion before; and the latter could not refrain from repeatedly expressing his surprise, that no one had before thought of putting the word of God into the hands of these poor unfortunate creatures. So many tears were shed, so many blessings implored, so kindly they pressed, one after another, to kiss the hand that had bestowed the precious gift formerly unknown among them, that, had it not been for the rattling of their chains, their emaciated looks, and the strongly grated windows and doors, I should have been apt to forget, for a moment, that I was in the midst of those who were the outcasts of society, and that many of them had been guilty of the blackest crimes. But even for these guilty wretches, there is plenteous forgiveness with Christ; and
the reading of his Gospel may be the means of bringing some of them into the light and liberty of the sons of God. Every where in the hospitals the Bible was welcomed gladly among the sick and wounded; and I have since heard, that many of the soldiers in the military hospitals are diligently per using the oracles of God. Two of these, Catholics, were observed to read in the Bible the whole day long after receiving it. One of their neighbours asked them, why they read so incessantly in their present weak state: one of the two answered, ‘This Book we have never read before: it is the most sacred of all books, and therefore must be the foundation of our Christian faith.' This interesting anecdote was related to me by the chief physician of the hospital, some days after I had been in it.
"His Excellency the Chancellor, Von Schrotter, was most agreeably surprised to hear of the reception the word of God had met with among the sick and unfortunate. He is President of the Bible Society in this city; and has repeatedly promised me, that, as soon as Bibles can be obtained, every prison and hospital in the surrounding country shall be supplied with them.
"His Majesty the King left this city yesterday for Berlon. In his conversation with the Bishop, he expressed his warmest attachment to the cause of the Bible Society, and his hearty desire that it may continue to prosper in his dominions; and, as paper for printing is very dear, and difficult to be got, he has promised to grant permission for paper to be brought in from Holland, free of the import duties, for two proposed editions."
VIEW OF PUBLIC AFFAIRS.
UNITED STATES, &c.-The President's Message to Congress, at the opening of the session, in addition to the customary topics of congratulation, contains a few points of more general interest. The existing commercial convention with this country being about to expire in July 1819, negociations have been enCHRIST. OBSERV. No. 204.
tered into with Great Britain for a permanent arrangement of the intercourse between the two nations. This proposal is stated to have been received in London "in the spirit which prompted it." The negociation is to extend to every interest and unsettled relation between the two powers, particularly to those connected with impressment, the fish5 P
eries, and territorial boundaries. The negociations between the United States and Spain remain as at the close of the last session of Congress. Nothing is added respecting the invasion of the Floridas to what our readers already know. The attack is boldly defended, on the ground that Spain could not maintain its authority, or repress its Indian neighbours in their incursions upon the citizens of the United States; and a somewhat curious remark is added, that Spain might have prevented these 66 disagreeable consequences, by the cession of the Floridas to the United States!" We are glad, however, to find it added, that the American Government still feels sincerely inclined to peace. Possession is to be retained of Pensacola and St. Mark's; the former till it is claimed, and the latter till a force shall be sent from Spain adequate to check the neighbouring Indians—an event, we suspect, not likely to happen very speedily. With respect to the execution of the two British subjects, Arbuthnot and Ambrister, Congress is referred to various documents, which will be laid before it, relative to the subject. The purposes of the United States towards the Indians in its vicinity are plainly avowed. "Experience," remarks the President," has long since clearly demonstrated, that independent savage communities cannot long exist within the limits of a civilized population." "To-civilize them, and even to prevent their extinction, it seems to be indispensable that their independence as communities should cease, and that the controul of the United States over them should be complete and undisputed." Congress is accordingly urged to adopt some "benevolent provisions having these objects in view." The ultimate intention of these remarks is sufficiently clear; and, though it is altogether impossible to justify the United States in either this or the before-mentioned instances of undue or even dubious exertion of their acknowledged strength, we should have been disposed to indulge a hope that to the Indians such an interfe rence as is evidently meditated by the President, might ultimately prove a blessing, by extending amongst them the arts and habits of civilized life, and bringing them more within the sphere of Christian instruction, did we not witness the Gold-blooded system of oppression which exists and seems likely to be perpetu
ated in the United States towards every class of their black aud coloured population. On this disgusting feature of their domestic policy we mean shortly to dilate. Quitting it for the present, we would also remark, that the ambitious views of the United States cannot be for a moment disguised in either this affair or that of the invasion of the Floridas, by the flimsy veil attempted to be thrown around them. Or, if we revert from political to moral considerations, it can never be authorised for the sake of "doing a great right" to "do even a little wrong." That Spain is losing much of its long-exerted power in the New World, whether in the Floridas or elsewhere, is certainly not a subject of regret, when we consider how systematically that influence has been exerted to restrain liberal commerce, to fetter the human mind, and to intercept the light of true religion". It seems, however, to be an unjustifiable dereliction of priuciple in any other nation to take undue advantage of its weakness; and to seize the moment of distress for indulging its own rapacity and thirst of power at the expense of its defenceless neighbour.
Having thus glanced at Spain in its colonial relations, we take the opportu nity of referring to its domestic affairs, which appear to be drawing towards a crisis. Every thing free, or happy, or honourable, seems crumbling away under the weight of the most bigotted and intolerant fanaticism. The sway of the priests, and the vigilance of the inquisition, continue to banish all freedom of inquiry or communication. All discussions in politics and religion are equally inhibited. Robbers and armed brigands are said to infest the public roads with impunity; and its commerce seems rapidly dwindling away, under the combined effects of its wretched system of domestic policy, and the extensive depredations of the South American cruizers. It has been
We of course are not insensible to the modified advantages conferred upon Spanish America by the Catholic establishments; and we could wish that other governments possessing a better religion had been always equally zealous in conferring upon their colonial native subjects the blessings of Chris tian instruction.
stated, we know not with what truth, that the sovereigns assembled in congress dispatched a confidential envoy to Spain, to remonstrate with Ferdinand, in their name, upon his system of government, and to urge him, by every consideration, to a wiser and more conciliating policy. Under circumstances like these, the public were not greatly surprised at confident and widely circulated reportswhich, however, were unfounded or premature-of a rebellion in that unhappy country, and of the flight of the king. Subsequent letters reduce the whole affair to the lawless proceedings of the armed banditti, who infest the country, in defiance of the constituted authorities.
The chambers have met. The speech of the king, at their opening, warmly congratulates the country on the retirement of the foreign armies, and speaks with marked eulogy of the declaration of the five allied powers. His majesty announces that his consecration and coronation are about to be celebrated with great solemnity. The speech contains the following remarkable passage: "I depend on your concurrence to repel those pernicious principles, which, under the mask of liberty, attack social order, conduct, by anarchy, to absolute power, and whose fatal success has cost the world so much blood and so many tears."
The French funds continue to be depressed. The Earl of Harrowby, it is said, is appointed to succeed Sir Charles Stuart, as ambassador to the court of France.
DOMESTIC AFFAIRS. The funeral of her late majesty, the queen, took place on Wednesday, the 9th December, at St. George's Chapel, Windsor. The day was very generally observed throughout the metropolis and its vicinity, as well as in various other places, with every mark of respect for the memory of her deceased majesty. The shops were wholly or half closed, and the public places of business were shut. Divine worship was celebrated in numerons churches and chapels, and a considerable number of funeral discourses delivered on the occasion have since been published. Thus, after a period of fifty-seven years, has been dissolved a connexion between a virtu
ous and exemplary queen, and a nation whom, during that protracted period, she had greatly benefited by her conduct and example. Contrary to the general expectation, her majesty's property, exclusive of her jewels, proves to have been very trifling. She is, in fact, stated not to have left more than about four thousand pounds. Her majesty's acts of private charity are represented as having been very considerable.What a lesson of caution does this circumstance furnish to those who are prone to credit, and eager to propagate, every wanton tale which tends to affect the character of their superiors, and to degrade them in public estimation! With what confidence have the immense accumulations of her majesty been for years asserted and believed! And yet now the statement proves to have been a vile fabrication.
A stronger sensation than ever has been excited in the public mind during the preceding month, on the subject of bank forgeries. At the Old Bailey Sessions, several persons indicted for uttering forged Bank of England notes were acquitted by the juries, partly on the ground that they could not believe the evidence of the bank witness (though it was in several instances strongly corroborated by other testimony), and partly from an alleged doubt under which they laboured, as to whether the notes in question were really forgeries. This discussion elicited from one of the bank inspectors the following particulars of the difference between the real and the forged notes. In the first place, the paper is not the same; next, the water-mark in the forged notes is indented by a sudden pressure after the paper is manufactured, whereas the water-mark of the genuine notes is interwoven, as it were, with the manufacturing of the paper of which they are made. Then, as to the numbers or figures, those of the Bank are stereotyped, whilst those of the forged notes are struck upon the copper-plate. A few days after the result of these trials, three persons who had been convicted of forgery in September last, were executed in the front of Newgate, amidst the murmurs of the crowd. Indeed, so obvious had been the spirit of dissatisfaction in the populace, that the sheriffs had thought it necessary to make suitable preparations for preventingdisturbance, It was under such circumstances that, on December 14, Dine prisoners were in