« PoprzedniaDalej »
sin, forgives it for ever ; and, there | festly decide the controversy between fore, I believe Christians have greatly his church and the world. Here their robbed themselves of happiness in not peace is a secret peace, and the world's distinguishing between God's chas- is an open triumph. Here they have tisements and God's fierce anger. God a peace within, which the world knows has cast their iniquities into the depths nothing of, and which, in their wicked of the sea, and, therefore, he will never blasphemy, they mock, but in the day remember their sins against them in of his coming Christ will decide the the way of punishment, angry punish controversy, and he will show that all ment, and he will never withdraw his the happiness that the world has ever loving-kindness from any soul that he possessed—all the possessions that the has loved. Oh, it would be a melan- / proud Pharisee has ever laid up for choly truth if he did, if it was but for himself-all that has been derived from one day in the Christian's life, one false religion, from pleasure, from sin, hour in the Christian's sojourning from any method in which Satan dehere on earth. The patience of God
ceives his children, that it was a would be exhausted if it was not peace that must perish in the light of bound up with his own faithfulness, God's countenance. Whereas, the and united with his very nature in peace which He has given by the sewhich there is no shadow of turning. cret influence of his Spirit, the peace So far we find that Christ is the be- conveyed to the view of faith, and in stower, as well as the preacher and the believing contemplation of his own procurer of this peace.
mercy, that is the peace that will shine Now, Lastly, we observe from this specially and peculiarly when the Lord, verse, that the Lord Jesus Christ the Prince of Peace, shall come; and IS THE CONFIRMER OF THIS PEACE. It when he comes, not only to thus deis expressly said here, “And he com- cide, but to give it in richer and more manded us to preach unto the people, abundant measure. While below, the and to testify that it is he which was Christian's peace is interrupted, it is ordained of God to be the judge of at a very low ebb. Temptation is very quick and dead.” At first sight it strong, the billows are very high, every might seem that the view of Christ's thing seems to threaten destruction to coming as the judge of quick and dead his peace. He is obliged to cry out, was not connected with peace, but was “O my God, my soul is cast down connected with terror. But, beloved, within me.” And his only answer to remember, that a Christian's peace is his soul is this,“ Hope thou in God, only begun in time, and the introduc- for I shall yet praise him who is the tion of Christ here coming as the judge health of my countenance and my is to show to us, that the peace he God." makes known to us in his Gospel is a Now, it is to this full measure of peace which is suited to the most
peace that the church is looking forawful and trying day, and to the eter- ward in the view of Christ's second nal period which lies before us. It coming. Until he comes they must is to assure us that peace wbich he be in the warfare-until he comes gives in believing will never receive there is no promise of perfect indiviits completion and perfection, until dual victory—until he comes there is
see Christ coming himself the Prince of Peace; and it is lastly, to
no promise of the Church's victoryshow us that there is a time coming
until he comes there is no promise when Christ will openly and mani.
that Satan shall be bruised under our feet; for until that period their lan
guage must be, individually, “We that den. They shall not hurt nor destroy are in this tabernacle do groan, being in all my holy mountain." Now, burthened—we who have the first mark the reason, “ for the earth shall fruits of the Spirit groan within our- be full of the knowledge of the LORD, selves, waiting for the adoption, to as the waters cover the sea.” They wit, the redemption of the body.” are one and other literal, so that if we
Now, it is at Christ's coming that were in any wise to diminish the full he bestows this rich, this abundant, and resplendent picture which the prothis uninterrupted peace. There are, phet gives of the world's peace, we and may be, moments when the might take away the resplendent picChristian enjoys a foretaste of glory, ture which the prophet gives of the but then it is often interrupted, and world's knowledge of God. One is as from temptations and trials it does not simply set out as the other; and as come to its full measure. But in that heretofore sin had entered its venom, day they shall be delivered from every and placed its poison in the whole temptation; they shall be delivered animal creation, then, and not till from the fowler's snare—they shall then, shall the whole of this world, have fought and won the day, and in which was once God's peculiar restingthe presence of their victorious Prince place, enjoy a perfect peace, because of Peace they shall enjoy full and un- then shall “the knowledge of the LORD interrupted peace.
cover the earth as the waters cover the But there is another reason why sea.” they look forward to Christ's second Oh, my friends, if this be the case, coming thus to enjoy peace, and it is how would it befit the church of Christ this, in the sympathy of their nature to long for the blessed day when He they shall see the world of peace. We shall come to whom belongs the therefore read, in the eleventh chapter kingdom ; and when he shall come of the prophet Isaiah, that “his rest out from within the veil where he is shall be glorious.” And in connexion now ministering, like the high priest with that rest you observe it is a period of old, stretching out his arms of of unparalleled peace. Then we find mercy, to bless his church, and bless that the whole of the creation rejoices bis ancient people, and bless the world in the joy of his people—then we find with the blessing of his peace. In the that all the venom and malice that sin forty-second verse it is said, "that he has introduced into our world, and the shall judge the quick and the dead ;" curse it has introduced, is done away and from this it appears that the Lord for ever. “And righteousness shall will first judge his people and then be the girdle of his loins, and faithful- judge his eremies, and that his judgness the girdle of his reins. The wolf, ment on the “quick” shall be for also, shall dwell with the lamb, and their peculiar glory, and for their eterthe leopard shall lie down with the val happiness ; and the judgment on kid; and the calf, and the young lion, the “dead” shall be that in which the and the fatling together, and a little former shall participate, "for know ye child shall lead them. And the cow not that we shall judge angels ;” and and the bear shall feed, their young all that Christ shall have of the Father ones shall lie down together : and the according to his promise, “ Ask of lion shall eat straw like the ox. And me and I will give thee the heathen for the sucking child shall play on the thine inheritance ;" all this shall be hole of the asp, and the weaned child shared with the saints, and all this shall put his hand on the cockatrice- will be communicated to the saints, and in this world's peace, and in this from all the domination of ecclesiasworld's enjoyment, the saints shall tical tyranny ; that amidst all the perhave a very rich enjoyment, and a very secution which God's people suffered blessed inheritance, for they shall see in the time when Rome had all her Christ crowned with glory, God the power, there was a little band in the Father acknowledged throughout his Moravian church testifying against its world, and the whole of creation de errors, and for Christ.
You are, perlivered from the malice of Satan, and haps, aware, that the Moravian church the wretchedness of sin.
continued after the slaughter of one of Now, my brethren, these are blessed its best and noblest martyrs ; and that subjects, and the heads of them only when Huss was killed, and Jerome had have I thrown out for your conside- suffered at the stake, they left behind ration. But let me remark to you, them a name and followers, who were that, individually, we are all bound to bold in their generation, and before see whether we have the peace of the era of the Reformation dawned Christ. And if we have individually ! upon us, testified once more for Christ. Christ as our anointed preacher, Christ | You are, perhaps, aware, that when as the gracious procurer of our peace, they were reduced to misery, and to a Christ, as the bestower of our peace, very small number, they were per. and Christ as the expected confirmer mitted to form a settlement on the of our peace for all eternity, it comes Continent; and from that little settlehome to every Christian, shall we not ment they sent forth their missionaries endeavour to communicate something as the very first missionaries of the of that peace to the sons of men? I world. So that we may call them the said, in the commencement, that the leaders of the missionary world, the sermon of Peter was the best mis- first, since there has been a revival of sionary sermon; and if I did not be the missionary spirit in the church of lieveourdear Moravian brethren preach- Christ, to take their lives in their right ed the same doctrine, I could not, con- hand, and to lay them down for Christ. scientiously, recommend you to sup- You are, perhaps, aware, that their port them ; but it is because I believe missionaries under God have been they have peculiarly exhibited Christ more blessed than any other church as the peace of his church, and that in according to their number and their great simplicity, and that to people several abilities. We read, for inwho wanted peace, that I urge you stance, that the Moravian church, as this night again to the blessed work. it exists at present, has got forty difYou are most likely aware that the ferent stations, two hundred missionMoravian church is a very ancient aries, and forty-one thousand converts. church, and that during the dark ages, Now this you will remember, as I perhaps some of the very first dark mentioned before, came from a little ages, they were a church separated band, and a very despised band of
(To be continued.)
London: Published for the Proprietors, by T. GRIFFITHS, Wellington Street, Strand
and Sold by all Booksellers in Town and Country.
Printed by Lowndes and White, Crane Court, Fleet Streel.
(The Rev. W. Dalton's Sermon concluiled.) those settling in one place on the Con- a very remarkable fact in the good tinent; so that, in fact, we might have providence of God, that that ship, on supposed that the Moravians would which we may say their very existhave thought of any thing but mis- ence depends, that that ship has never, sionary work. When they sent out for the course of sixty years, been their missionaries to the West Indies, interrupted in its voyage, but has to South America, to South Africa, to always reached its final destination. North America, to the coasts of Lap- This, I think, in itself is a proof of land and Greenland, when they sent God's peculiar regard for those dear them out, I say, what was the bless- brethren who have such a truly mising of God? The blessing was beyond sionary spirit, and who have gone any thing we know, except in the apos- through so many labours. tolic days, considering their number If I was in one view to bring before and their opportunities. You must you the grounds of my appeal to you remember that the Moravian mission- this night, I would briefly mention the aries do not go out as other mis- following. First, they have given a sionaries go, supported by an income, peculiar testimony to Christ ; I mean supported by an annual sum, but they that they did so in a dark age, when actually go out as missionaries of the others had yielded to tyranny, opfirst ages, without any annual income pression, superstition, and idolatry. whatever, and that they are only sup- Secondly, they have gone through ported in the necessaries of life, which lengthened trials. You have only to are sent to or communicated to them read Crantz's History of Greenland to in the countries in which they live; see what the Moravian brethren have and so remarkably is this the case, gone through in their various trials that I may mention it to some perhaps there; how they have often, when who are not aware of the fact, that they could not procure a habitation, there is a ship annually loaded with been satisfied to hide themselves, if I provisions and various necessary arti- may so speak, in the caves; and when cles, sent out from this country to the they were asked by the prince of one Moravian brethren, and that for a country where they would reside, as it number of years this ship has gone was impossible to give them wood to out, and never as yet has it been in- build a house with, their reply was, terrupted in its voyage. We find here “ We will make a habitation for our. in one account that they depend for selves—we will dig holes in the earth.” provisions on this country, whence a Now, there is another reason, and I vessel has conveyed them for sixty may, in the Third place, mention their years without one failure. Now, it is abundant labours. They have vot only
gone through trials, but they have soul, when they could say in the midst gone through most abundant labours. of a Greenland winter, in the midst of We find, for instance, that their la- the severest and bitterest cold, that bours have been exceedingly blessed it was a very paradise to their souls, not only in Greenland, but they have that they were so filled with the love also been blessed in South Africa to a of Christ, and so full of his blessed wonderful extent. With regard to the work that their souls were warm, coast of Labrador we find, in the set while their bodies were enduring the tlement there established, three hun- most intense cold. dred Esquimaux are gathered together, Oh, brethren, what a word of retheir barbarous spirits tamed, and their buke to us, who in the midst of privi. hearts cheered by faith in a crucified leges the richest, and means the most and sympathising Saviour. A fourth abundant, find often every thing but settlement has been determined on warmth at our souls, nay our souls, as eighty miles further north. They have it were, seized with a Greenland coldnow four settlements, containing 2700 We find that this account is Greenlanders, gathered from among peculiarly satisfactory as to the retheir heathen and degraded country-ceiving of persons to the sacrament, men, for whose welfare the brethren because they are particularly cautious have inhabited these frozen regions for in so doing. The brethren are causeventy-seven years. In the last settle- tious in the admission of converts ment that commenced, two male mis- to baptism, and still more so to the sionaries and one female had to dwell | Lord's Supper; yet still, so greatly in a hut of sods during two Greenland have their faithful labours been blessed, winters.
that they number more than fourteen You are all aware that the cold in thousand communicants, above oneGreenland is beyond every thing we
third of the whole of their congregahave experienced in our country, yet tion, and one thousand eight hundred here they were exposing their lives and forty not yet communicants. Of in huts built merely of sods. We find the congregation above enumerated, on their arrival they give the follow- more than twenty-seven thousand are ing account. “Our people grow in subjects of Great Britain. Now this grace, and the love and knowledge of fact imposes peculiar claim on the pertheir Saviour. Twenty-eight have been sons of this country—they are persons admitted to the Lord's Supper, and under British government. They have not less than one hundred have been gone to those countries where England received into the congregation. The has often extended its triumph and the joy we experience in beholding the sword of its conqueror, but brought Lord and his Spirit on their hearts, no balm for perishing souls, and never the love and confidence we enjoy, thought of wielding the warfare of make this dreary and frozen region a God with the sword of the Spirit. paradise to our souls. We do not feel But these poor missionaries have had the privations to which persons living twenty-seven thousand in the British in this country must necessarily sub- dominions in foreign parts. This, I mit. Our solitary dwellings appear say, has a very strong claim on every places of rest in the Lord; and the one here to-night, that they should rough and piercing cold of the climate come forward to the help of this does not chill the warmth of our af- blessed work. fections." What a blessed testimony I may mention with regard to the this is to the power of God in the labours of the Moravians, that they