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That on the bowsprit led the way to death
FROM THE SAME
SEE how the flow'ret blushes in the morn-
FROM THE LONDON BAPTIST MAGAZINE.
I am a gleaner, and I beg the liberty of presenting to my readers the few
handfuls I have gleaned to day: it was plucked up in different fields, but I think the corn is good.
THE first handful is from the field of Observation. I have observed among professors, that the most active are the most happy: diligence in every good word or work, carries with it its own reward. Those who serve God with their time, talents, property, influence, &c. serve a good master: their work is graciously rewar,ded here and hereafter. I have observed that the most humble are
the most happy : nothing is more offensive to God, or contrary to his nature, perfections, and commands, than pride. Proud professors may soar high, but their fall is inevitable. I have observed that the most spiritual are the most happy. I mean those whose conversation is most about spiritual things : I do not mean speculative conversation, nor controversial wrangling, but free conversation, about spiritual blessings, personal experience, and future prospects. I hear but little that is worthy the name of spiritual conversation among Christian professors, and that little is chiefly among the poor and afflicted. I have observed that those who are most attentive to their Bibles are the most happy. Scripture truth is calculated to inform the judgment, regulate the conduct, and comfort the heart. I have observed that men are benefitted or injured by the company they associate with: people insensibly drink into the spirit of those with whom they are intimate. I observe some professors, who may be Christians for aught I know ;-but I sometimes think it will be time enough to be intimate with them when I meet them in heaven. I have observed that the falls of professors have generally been gradual : perhaps they have been very careless and trifling, or very vain and haughty, or very negligent in the use of the means, and then we hear they are fallen into open sin. Give motion to a ball down a hill, and the further it goes the faster it goes; and unless something considerable inpede its progress, it will surely go to the bottom.
My second handful is gleaned from the field of Experience. I have experienced that secret prayer cannot be neglected without danger and loss: there is danger of increasing carnality, barrenness, and leanness,; danger of going into unprofitable company, pernicious errors, and secret sins: loss of fellowship with God, and the relish of spiritual conversation ; loss of freedom, of comfort, of watchfulness, and of evidence; loss of a Father's smiles and of a shining Sun. I have experienced that visiting the sick and afflicted, and conversing and praying with them, have contributed to promote contentment, spirituality, and devotion, and to wean my heart from the world. I have found, from many years experience, that reading a portion of scripture on my knees every morning, and praying over every verse, or every sentence, has a tendency to endear the word
to my soul, to inspire the spirit of devotion, to rivet the word in my
CHURCH MISSIONARY SOCIETY.
Twenty-second Anniversary. WE cannot forbear making a few extracts from addresses delivered at the Anniversary above-mentioned.
Ret, William Dealtry. I would allude to another circumstance mentioned in the Report, -I mean the benevolent spirit of the Christian negroes collected in the settlements in Sierra Leone. It struck me, while hearing the statements respecting these lately-liberated slaves, that if it had occurred in the pages of ancient Ecclesiastical History, that some traveller had lighted upon a people, so anxious for religious instruction, and so devoted to their worship, that they attended daily in great numbers at morning and evening prayers that they exhibited their christian charity in a way so remarkable, that, when some outcasts landed on their coasts, they ran to them, pouring as it were oil and wine into their wounds, carrying them on their backs to their town, and supplying them with every necessary--this would be a fact to which we should allude, as one of the most interesting which the page of history could produce. We should have said, " Happy are the people ander the influence of a spirit like this !” But, my Lord, this is an event of our own day! there is now such a Goshen, where the inhabitants have light to their dwellings! There is an Oasis of this kind, even in the deserts of Africa! It might, indeed, be thought, that these people were naturally of very amiable character: but the report states explicitly, that this was not the case ; and that, previous to the introduction of Christianity among them, if some of their re-captured countrymen were landed on the coast, they would perhaps inquire if there were among them, a brother, or a relative, or a friend, but were quite indifferent to the wants and sufferings of others: but we find, on the occasions stated in the Report, that they inquired not who is my brother, or my friend, but they eagerly supplied the wants of all, and shewed their love to God by their love to their fellow-creatures.
And I am the more forcibly impressed by this fact, from the contrast which it affords to the state of the slaves on board Le Rodeur, a French vessel, among whom, as she was crossing the Atlantic in 1819, with 160 slaves, and a crew of 22 men, the Ophthalmia appeared. From the slaves, the disease reached the crew; all of whom, except one man, became wholly or partially blind. A question naturally arises, “Why did not the negroes rise upon the crew ;” as it is known, that such is their love of liberty, that when they could seize the opporturity they leaped into the sea. The real cause of their not rising was their mutual hatred. Consisting of different tribes, they looked upon one another with malice; and, though in chains, were ready to tear one another in pieces! Mark the contrast, produced by the blessing of God on the residence of a few years at Sierra Leone !
And as a proof of the power of the Gospel, I would recal to your recollection the statement of the Report, that these negroes had been under christian instruction, only for the short period of four years. Well might the naval officer who accompanied Sir Charles MacCarty, on a visit to Gloucester Town, express his astonishment at this fact, as we have heard from the Report that he did ; and well did Sir Charles reply, that this was the effect of Christianity, for no such effect could be produced by any other means.
Rev. Theophilus Blumhardt. What we had scarcely deemed practicable, considering the geographical situation of the Protestant churches on the continent, being encouraged by the striking appearance of a mysterious Providence, and cherished from an impulse from your Society, our friends on the continent resolved to attempt. They determined to unite themselves into a Missionary Society, and so to take a part in this great and glorious work of the Lord. In Switzerland, in the southern, and nothern parts of Germany, in Persia, and among the Protestants in France, Auxiliary Missionary Societies arose in multitudes; and what we had scarcely ventured to indulge in imagination, we beheld realized before our astonished
with the deepest emotions of gratitude to the Lord, whose name is Wonderful. We beheld servant-maids, and widows, and orphans, offering with the greatest cheerfulness their little savings, young ladies their trinkets, and careful matrons, their long-cherished bridal ornaments, to support our Christian Society; and so we have been enabled, by the hand of our God and Saviour, to send missionaries into the countries bordering on the Black and Caspian Seas.
William Wilberforce, Esq. It is most encouraging to hear that our funds, instead of diminishing in the present time of difficulty, are still augmenting-indicating, we may hope, that our countrymen have been rendered, by the sufferings which they have experienced, more sensible that this world is not our home, and that it is our duty to render to others the means of salvation. Thus will the very evils which we experience here, increase our sum of happiness, and prove a blessing to the world.
And it is a still more delightful circumstance, that the augmentation of our funds is not produced by the diminution of the funds of kindred societies; but, on the contrary, they also increase. I rejoice in this fact, which our Report states with pleasure: but I know not if I do not rejoice still more, in the expression of satisfactior with which it was stated. It is delightful to hear ourselves thus called on, in the true spirit of missions and the true spirit of Christianity, to rejoice together, and all to form one concert of praise to the Giver of all mercies. It is an honor, I think, bestowed on the times in which we live, that Christians have been more filled with divine wisdom and heavenly love. Nay, even in political and