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Some men of mind and mark are never fully themselves when called to speak before others; they are always in a flurry and fluster, and often leave an impression on the minds of their hearers contrary to what they intended; others are naturally calm and deliberate in their mode of expression, whether before many or few. Some members have larger capacities for thought and discussion than others, and are able to maintain a more even balance of temper in the heat of controversy, and it is comparatively easy for such good brethren to deal tenderly and charitably with those whose Christian graces surrounded with much ignorance, and whose spiritual experience ranges far beyond the bounds of their mental culture.
In churches where the faith and order of the New Testament is not strictly adhered to, more peace (of a certain kind) seems to exist than in those churches where the truth as it is in Jesus is maintained in love. This, in past days, surprised me much, until with the Psalmist, I went into the sanctuary of my God, then understood I their end. Where, as
my good brother Styles observes, “anythingarianism” abounds, there is nothing to dispute, nothing definite to atend for either in faith or order; and hence it is obvious how a worldly church and respectably educated heathens can agree at the expense of the truth. While on the other hand in churches where the truth exists in its divines energy, Satan, as in Job's time, comes also among them, and stirs up pride, jealousy, and other evils oonsonant with himself and fallen nature, until the church is divided against itself. To make mischief and to set the people of God at variance, is the greatest point aimed at by the enemy of souls. Thus where the truth is not loved and abided by; Satan has nothing to quarrel about; and here I am reminded of a quaint saying of my very dear old friend Dr. Thomas Fuller, who was a churchman, a scholar, and a Christian ; speaking of
who “ wilfully separate" from church fellowship, he
says, possibly they may continue some competent time in tolerable unity together. Afterwards, upon a new discovery of a higher and holier way of divine service,
these ten will split asunder into five and and five, and the purer moiety divide from the other, as more drossy and peculent.
Then the five in process of time, upon the like occasion of clearer illumination, will cleave themselves into three and two. Some short time after, the three will crumble into two and one, and the two part into one and one, till they come into the condition of the Ammonites, so scattered, that two of them were not left together.”
As far as church order is concerned, we have it couched in Acts ii. 41-47. Christians are here exhorted to "continue steadfastly in the Apostles' doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread and in prayers,” which from the context, I understand to infer that believers who are baptized and received into fellowship with the “Strict Baptist” Church, which, without speaking egotistically, I declare to be the most faithful of all the sections of the one great church of God, ought to abide in her communion always both in faith and order, or quietly leavo her fellowship. It has long been a mystery to me how professed lovers of the truth can consistently feel at home at two tables, first, for a time commune with a people where the grand old-fashioned truths of the Bible are preached and loved, and afterwards sit down at the table where a yea, nay gospel is preached The elements or emblems may be exactly identical at both places, but the faith is not the same in its entirety. The com. munion of saints is not so much in the partaking of the bread and wine as in the oneness of spirit realized through faith in Christ; otherwise we do not discern the Lord's body, and consequently eat and drink unworthily.
My beloved brother Styles will, I am sure, excuse the references I have un: hesitatingly made to a part of his ably written article, and will I hope also favour the readers of the Gospel Herald with some further remarks on what scripturally constitutes a church, and what is its right mode of government.
Thanking you, Mr. Editor,for the liberty you have always so readily granted me, I remain, as ever, yours in the bonds of the gospel,
MRS. GEORGE HARRIS. The subject of this memoir was born in the town of Orford, Suffolk, on the 23rd day of June, 1809, of parents members of the Church of England, the rites of which were attended to in infant baptism, and at the age of thirteen years after due training, she was confirmed at Woodbridge by the late Bishop of Norwich-a ceremony the writer has often heard her refer to as being entered upon with much thought, and feelings of peculiar solemnity. A short time after this, she visited a friend at Grundisburgh, who attended under the ministry of the renowned Mr. John Thompson, one of the earliest ministers in this County of the Regular Baptist denomination. Accompanying this friend to the chapel on the Lord's-day, she heard this man of God preach the first full, clear, gospel sermon she had ever listened to, from the 22nd and 23rd verses of the 18th Psalm, “The stone which the builders refused,” etc. This sermon, she said, came with such influence on her mind as to produce much after-thought, the words of the text especially so; but being without anyone to guide her, the truths with her were veiled in mystery, and in measure the interest she felt passed away, and but little by the writer is known of her religious convictions until 1833, in which year an engagement took place between us, and although the writer, on soul matters was under serious impressions, he accompanied her a few times into the services of the Church of England; but through not realizing the power and sweetness he desired in the worship, asked if she felt any objection to going with him to chapel. This she cheerfully consented to, and there, under the highly valued ministry of our much revered brother Samuel Collins, her mind became graciously and gradually enlightened upon God's plan of salvation as revealed in His precious word. At this time an incident took place which I briefly name. One Saturday afternoon, a neighbour, by the name of Lewis, went into her father's house, where she with her mother and sister were at their work. Lewis asked if they had heard the news that I, with others, was going to be baptized the next morning; a communication both mother and sister made
very light of, but one which so affected the mind of the departed that she went upstairs, bent her knees, and poured out in earnest prayer her heart to God that if I were brought to yield to that command. ment of the New Testament, she might also by the teachings of the Holy Spirit be brought to walk with me in God's appointments : a prayer in due time graciously answered. For though the writer unworthily delayed publicly putting on Christ for several years, at last the time came that he could no longer refrain from joining the church at Grundisburgh, being previously baptized on Lord's-day, July 4th, 1841; a day which by God was made very memorable to us both, for I had not had the courage nor manliness to tell her of my decision, and secretly I packed the change of clothes required after the baptismal service, left my bed at 3 o'clock on the Lord's-day morning; got into the gig, and was about to start without saying one word to her. But the question entered my mind, Am I acting consistently towards her ? Under the question I felt condemned. I alighted, went to my chamber, and asked if she had any idea about what I was going to Grundisburgh for? Her reply was “Yes, I knew all about it; you are going over to be baptized.” I said, how do you know that, and she said, “It was revealed to me in a dream; I saw you and a host of people by the water-side, and I saw Mr. Collins take you by the hand, and you went with him down into the water, and he baptized you;' and she added, “In the heavens I saw an eye above the brightness of the sun looking down and shining upon
At this statement my feelings were indescribable; and I burst into tears, took my leave of her, blessing God. After I started she looked after me, first from one window and then from another, until she lost sight of me; when the thought entered her mind, she would never see me again—that I was taken, and she was left, and throughout the day she feared each minute she should sink into hell. I returned home in the evening, and truly delighted she was to see me. After our servants retired, said to her I ha this day put on publicly the profession of Christ, would you like mc to read a
chapter, and try to pray with you. She looked hard at me and said, George, I have often wondered what your thoughts have been of me, whether you have considered me worthy of being with you in your devotional exercises ; for you have gone away from me to pray in private, and you have frequently conversed with others on soul matters, but not spoken with me upon them—a reproof I felt very deeply, and resolved by God's
promised help to be no longer under it. From that time we read, we prayed, and conversed upon the good things, the Lord carrying on the work of His grace in her heart. In the spring following, I attended a church meeting at Grundisburgh, when a schoolfellow of hers was proposed as candidate for baptism and membership; on my return I told her of it, she imme. diately said, “If he is going to be baptized, I shall be baptized with him," I asked her why she said so ? She replied, “It is revealed to me in a dream,” and gave the particulars of it, and closed by saying, she “ saw the angels of God descending and ascending during the administration of the ordinance.” After this she spoke to Mr. Collins, and expressed a desire to join the church, was proposed for membership, and was baptized with ten other persons on the first Lord's-day in June, 1842, her schoolfellow being one of the number. From the time of joining the church, she truly walked humbly with her God. She was not a great talker, but one of those who prayed often, and read the word of God daily, consequently was very conversant
therewith, and her thoughts were much exercised on eternal things. During the last five years she passed through much bodily weakness and suffering, borne by her with exemplary patience and fortitude.
In February, 1879, for several days she was given up for death by her medical attendant, who being a man of God conversed with her on divine things, and found her experiencing much of the preciousness of Jesus in her soul, and spoke with assurance of her safety in Christ, much to the joy of both him and ourselves. But the Lord restored again in measure, and spared her through much langour and disease for eighteen months, a time in which her tongue was loosed to speak well of Him who had done such great things for her, such as “ The Lord is good, who has not laid upon me more than Hé has given me strength to bear, for our
light afflictions, which are but for moment, work for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory." “ Bless the Lord, O my soul, and all that is within me, bless His holy name. "The Lord is the portion of my soul, therefore will I hope in him." etc. She would often repeat verses of hymns:
Begone unbelief, my Saviour is near,” &c. “ His honour is engaged to save
The meanest of His sheep,
His hands securely keep.
His favorites from His breast;
Let me to Thy bosom fly," &c. She often by precious faith had heartcheering views of the glory world, and spoke of the happiness of the blest, saying, “ There shall I bathe my weary soul
In seas of heavenly rest,
Across my peaceful breast." At times she prayed earnestly for her release. She once asked the writer to do it, saying, “ Tell the Lord Jesus I am prepared, and willing to go to Him when He is willing to come for me," and added, “ Tell Him I am coming to Him a sinner saved by grace.” She said to me on one occasion, “Do not fret; I must leave you, yet I shall not leave you, I shall hover around you while you stay in the wilderness.” Again she said, “We must part, but soon shall meet where parting is unknown.” She manifested deep solicitude for her children, being earnestly exercised concerning their eternal welfare, and pleading for their being brought savingly to Jesus. The last prayer heard from her lips was, “If she had been left to injure anyone, the Lord would forgive her as she freely forgave all.” Through the fretting diseases she had long endured, when her change came, she had nothing to do but to breathe out her spirit quietly, yea, without a struggle or a sigh, into the hands of God, who redeemed it by His own precious blood. Under the bereaving providence, the writer has lost a true help-meet in every bearing of the term, but feels grateful for the boon spared to him so long, upwards of 43 years, feeling assured that, though separated, it is only Lord have accompanied it by the power of his Holy Spirit for spiritual and lasting good, is the prayer of yours in covenant love,
MARIA WILLS, Widow of Samuel Wills, and third daughter of the late John Andrews Jones, of whose church “ Jireh,” East-road, she was a member 47 years. After a long illness endured with much patience, in full assurance of faith, entered into her rest, September 25th.
for a season. The children have lost a kind and affectionate mother, from whom they have received many words of loving counsel, which may the Lord the Holy Spirit bave laid up in their hearts for their being developed in spirit and conduct in the present or future. The church of Christ is bereft of honourable consistent member, one who loved the habitation of God's house, and who prayed for the peace and prosperity of Zion. May God have heard, and may He speedily fill up the vacant places in our midst. The circle in which she lived has lost a true friend, a generous neigh. bour, full of kindness to the poor. For all this we give God abone the glory; for it was His Spirit and grace meetened her for all in life in death, and for the inheritance of the saints in light. Blessed be His name, Father, Son, and Holy Ghost. Amen.
On Tuesday, the 24th of August, her mortal remains were interred in the chapel ground at Rishangles, in the presence of many relatives and friends ; brother Boud, from Earl Soham, by her request officiating : and on the Lord's-day afternoon following, a funeral sermon was preached by him to an overflowing con. gregation, from Psalm lxxiii. 26, the words chosen by herself. Great 80lemnity prevailed in the service, many minds being deeply affected. May the
MRS. S. A. HAWKINS. SARAH Ann, the wife of John A. Hawkins, the eldest son of William and Elizabeth Hawkins, and grandson of the late J. A. Jones, passed into the heavens, September 10th, 1880; after a long illness from the terrible affliction of inward cancer. A week before her departure she gave up to her Lord's care her husband, and her seven children; and in the hour of death, in the midst of distressing agony, surrounded by her husband and children, she received each of them to give them the dying blessing; then look. ing in the face of her beloved mother-inlaw, uttered the blessed word “Happy.' “ Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.'
The Gospel Bield.
“Goye into all the world, and preach the Gospel to every creature.”
the former, besides assisting in schoolwork, had been engaged in out-door preaching, at fifty-seven places during the month (August), to about eight hundred people, and visited thirty houses, distributing two hundred and eighty hand. bills. His wife was busied in school and “ Zenana work;' the latter consists in visiting females at their own houses, and conversing with them about the interests of their immortal souls. This branch of Mission work has excited much attention lately, and those who encourage or en. gage in it are very hopeful as to results, which have already been seen in much fruit. It is a way in which zealous Chris.
At St. Thomas' Mount, Mr. Doll had formally taken charge of that station, and hopes, by the blessing of God, to see good fruit springing up from seed sown and to be sown.
Vencatasawmy, and his wife Rachel, were labouring very diligently;
not come to hear the sermon, we hope to see in the evening, to hear the good brethren who have kindly engaged to address the meeting. [See advertisement on cover.]
tian women, like some of old, can help much in the gospel.
At Poonamallee, Mr. Doll states, the members of the little church are living in love and harmony, which, hoping it arises from spiritual causes, is pleasant to learn. Friends resident on the spot, give him a very favourable report of our Mission affairs here. A visit by Mr. Doll to an aged native brother, a member of our Mission church is thus referred to:-“I went to see poor brother Sholayapen. He is old and feeble, and laid up in his humble hut with fever, asthma, and dyssentery. I asked him if the Lord called him was he prepared; he answered, with much firmness, Jesus Christ alone is my Redeemer; I am waiting for Him to call me home, where I shall be happy for ever with Him.” Blessed hope! our precious Saviour is thus gathering His sons from afar, and His daughters from the ends of earth. They shall come, for He hath said it.
The day school here was doing well under the new teacher, who is a Christian man, and takes great pains in teaching the children the scriptures. Number of children in day-school, thirty-two; in Sabbath-school, twenty-three. The Poonamalle report ends with these words :
May the prayers of the Lord's children be heard in heaven while we approach the Most High on behalf of His own kingdom.” To this our superintendent, brother Doll, adds a hearty Amen and Amen. And as to be heard they must be presented, and if presented in faith and love will be sure to be heard ; let all our friends earnestly and continually seek the Lord's blessing on this Mission, not forgetting special mention at the prayermeetings immediately preceding our
ANNUAL MEETING, As requested of our pastors and deacons by the committee in last month's maga
We hope to have good gatherings of friends and well-wishers on that occasion. It happens rather unfavourably that the time was inadvertently fixed on the day on which our friends at Mount Zion, Hill-street, hold an important meeting. However, we hope friends who can. not come in the evening, will come in the afternoon, and hear our excellent brother, Mr. Forman, of March, who, no doubt, by the grace and help of our God, will give us a good sermon.
GERMAN BAPTIST MISSION. The Quarterly Reporter of this Mission, for October, 1880, contains interesting statistical information respecting the Churches, and some notes of information connected with the Mission. A cry has come, as of old, from Macedonia, for help, not now in the form of a man of Mace. donia ” in a vision by night, but in a letter, in the Bulgarian language, from the town of Kasanlik, earnestly requesting that some one be sent to preach the gospel to them. This our German brethren desire to do, but at present have not been able. The letter is signed by twenty-three persons, who comprise the Bulgariau church at Kasanlik, which it states" has accepted the Evangelical doctrine for four years past, inasmuch as they have acknowledged the baptism of believers, according to the teaching of the Word of God. They have, therefore, rejected infant baptism, because it can no. where be proved from the New Testament." This little church has to contend with many difficulties, but is determined in the strength of God to fight against them all. It is to be hoped that this ap: peal, so interesting in its associations, and urgent in its claims, will, ere long, moet with a suitable response.
Some interesting particulars are given respecting a district in Russia, where there are about two hundred Baptists scattered among the villages around Tiflis, at which place a missionary labours in connection with a church of forty mem. bers. This brother wishes for an English hymn book, wherefrom to translate hymns into Russian. Will the committee of that book send him a Stevens' selection ? Details are given of two tours, one in Switzerland, the other in “ Rigi,". in which, amongst much that is interesting, the following, respecting the venerable and beloved Oncken, appears: hoped to see Pastor Oncken at Zurich, but found he was staying at his brother, in-law's country seat far up the lake, and that his increasing infirmities rendered it doubtful whether, if we took the addi. tional journey, we should find him well enough to bear the excitement of the
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