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of ground opposite the chapel, when the foundation-stone of a house for the minister was laid by the Rev. J. P. Lewis, of Diss, who also delivered an address. After partaking of tea the assembly adjourned to the chapel, and listened to addresses delivered by the Revs. C. Elven, J. P. Lewis, W. W. Cantlow, of Isleham, and W. Lloyd, of Barton Mills. In order to maintain a resident minister at West Row the friends are compelled to build a dwelling-house, as the number of houses is altogether inadequate to the wants of the population, and the minister for some years past has been compelled to occupy apartments. SUTTON-IN-THE-ELMS,
LEICESTERSHIRE. On Tuesday, June 21st, the Baptist chapel in this place, which has for the last hundred years been the meeting-place of one of the oldest Noncon. formist churches in the kingdom, after undergoing extensive repairs and alterations, was re-opened for public worship, when two able sermons were preached, that in the morning by the Rev. J. Martin, B.A., of Nottingham, and that in the evening by the Rev. J. Mursell, of Kettering. Dinner and tea were provided on the spot under a spacious marquee. In the afternoon select pieces of sacred music were sung by the choir, and several brief addresses given, the Rev. J.P. Mursell, of Leicester, presiding. And on the Sunday followwing, June 26th, two excellent sermons were preached by the Rev. T. Lomas, of Leicester. The proceeds of the services amounted to £40. The improvement effected in the chapel is so great, that it called forth the admiration of all present who know the place in its former state.
KIDDERMINSTER.-On Monday, June 27th, a tea-meeting was held in the music-hall in this place, which brought together some 500 persons of every denomination of the town to help the Baptist friends in their building fund for a new chapel. After tea Alderman Turton presided, and the Revs. T. Marsden, B.A. (Independent); s. Dunn, of Atch Lench (Baptist); W. Symonds, of Pershore (Baptist); and Thomas Fisk, the pastor of the church, suitably addressed the meeting, The situation of the old chapel is acknowledged on all hands to have been for a length of time most dis. advantageous either for gathering or maintaining a congregation, and the church having, through the liberality of one of the Kidderminster manufacturers, an offer of a capital site in the centre of the town, at once felt it their duty and interest to accept it.
About £550 bave been already collected and promised, and the pastor will thankfully acknowledge the aid of all who feel interested in the extension of Christ's kingdom.
NORTH SHIELDS.-Services were held in the Baptist Chapel, Howard Street, North Shields, on Sunday, July 10th, in connection with the fiftieth anniversary of the Sunday-school. On the follow. ing Wednesday a tea-meeting was held in the school-room, Stephenson Street, after which a public meeting, which was numerously attended, was held in the same place. Mr. Williamson was called upon to preside. Devotional exercises having been engaged in, the chairman, the Rev. J. D. Carrick, the minister of the church, read a brief but interesting account of the school since its formation. The Rev. W. Walters then delivered an interesting and appropriate address on the subject of Sunday-school work. The Rev. Mr. Carr and other ministers and gentlemen also addressed the meeting.
SEVENOAKS, KENT.-On Thursday, July 7th, services were held to recognise the Rev. J. Jackson as pastor of the church at Sevenoaks. The Rev. F. White, of Chelsea, commenced by reading and prayer, The Rev. G. Rogers, of the Metropolitan
Tabernacle College, gave an impressive pastoral charge. The Rev. C. Vince, of Birmingham, offered prayer, especially commending the pastor to God. The Rev. W. Brock addressed the church. A hundred and thirty persons sat down to tea in the old assembly-room, which was tastefully decorated. In the evening, the Ror. C. Vince preached froin Heb. xüi. 8. Many neighbouring ministers were present. MINISTERIAL CHANGES.—The Rev. Philip Bail
. hache, of Salisbury, has accepted the cordial and unanimous invitation of the church at West End, Hammersmith, lately ander the pastorate of the Rev. Dr. Leechman.-The Rev. J. B. Brasted has resigned his charge at Andover, and is now open to an invitation to a vacant pulpit.-The Rev.d. Field, from the Metropolitan College, has accepted the unanimous invitation of the South Portland Street Baptist church, Glasgow, to the co-pastorate, in connection with the venerable Alexander M‘Leod. Mr. Field commenced his stated labours on Sunday, the 19th of June.-The Rev. J. Hirons has been obliged, on account of personal affliction, to resign the pastorate of the Baptist church, George Street, Hull, on which he so lately entered. His retirement and its cause are the subject of deep regret, both to the church and to Mr. Hirons's ministerial brethren in the country.—The Rer. Thomas Evans has resigned the pastorate of the Baptist church at Waterford.-The Rev. B. P. Pratten has (on account of ill-health) resigned the pastorate at Guilsborough, Northamptonshire.The Rev. L. B. Brown, of Berwick-upon-Tweed, has accepted a cordial and unanimous invitation to the pastorate of the Salthouse Lane Baptist church, Hull.-The Rev. Joseph Price intends to resign the pastorate of the Baptist church, Monta. cute, Somerset, at Michaelmas next, after a con. nection of forty-three years.--The Rev. Joseph Drew, nineteen years pastor of the Baptist church, Newbury, has accepted the unanimous invitation of the church meeting in Trinity Road Chapel
, Halifax.--The Rev. T. R. Stevenson, of Harlow, has accepted the unanimous invitation to the pas. torate of the church worshipping in Union Chapel, Luton.--Mr. T. Foston, of the Baptist College, Bristol, has accepted the cordial invitation of the church meeting at Salem Chapel, Clarence Parade, Cheltenham.--Mr. Parry, of the Baptist College, Bristol, has accepted the cordial invitation of the Baptist church at Wells.-The Rer. Charles Williams, of Accrington, has accepted the unani. mous invitation of the members of the church worshipping in Portland Chapel, Southampton, to become their pastor. It is expected that he will commence his labours about the end of September
, - The Rev. H. Ashbery, of Sheffield, has accepted a unanimous invitation to the pastorate of the church in Wellington Street, Luton, Beds.
The Rev. J. W. Ashworth has resigned the pastorato of the church meeting
in King Street, Oldham, and has accepted the cordial and unanimous invitation of the church meeting in Broad Street
, Pershore.-The Rev. E. Bott, of Barton Fabis
, has accepted the unanimous 'invitation to the pastorate of the Baptist church, Tarporley, Cheshire, and will commence his labours on the first Lord's day in August. --The Rev. Harris Crassweller, B.A., of Woolwich, has received an invitation from the church at 'st. Mary's Gate, Derby, and has consented to become its pastor on the first Lord's day in September; until which date, however, he does not relinquish his connection with the church at Woolwich.-The Rev. T; A. Binns has, on accouut of the delicate health of Mrs. Binns, resigned the pastorate of the church at Warwick,
“Built upon the foundation of the Apostles and Prophets, Jesus Chrigt himself being the
“ THE UNSPOKEN WARNING."
To the Editor of THE CHURCH. Dear Sir,—The paper entitled “The Unspoken Warning" in your last number, reminded me of the following short account of a somewhat similar is providential interposition of which I wrote the remembrance some time ago.
Innumerable instances could be furnished from the lives of Christians accusstomed to "observe 80 as to “understand the loving-kindness of the Lord,” in y such special tokens of his care.
I am, dear Sir,
Yours faithfully, Hackney, August 11th, 1864.
The late Dr. Olinthus Gregory used to relate a singular instance of preservation from great bodily harm, possibly even from death, by the repeated recurrence of a well-known phenomenon, which often passes unobserved, or is produced for mere amusement, viz., the sudden rekindling by a breath of air of a flame that has been previously blown out. The circumstance now to be related occurred about the middle of Blackheath, and many years ago, when that delightful suburban region was often a dreary and dangerous solitude for a wayfarer. It
was late on a very dark night, when the devout mathematician was return. ing from an unusually late visit to a friend, D. Alexander, Esq., then residing on the heath. Mr. Alexander insisted on sending a man with a lantern across the heath and along the road towards Shooter's Hill
. It was in vain to resist the kindness, but not willing to trouble the guide, who would have had to retorn alone and in the dark, Dr. Gregory took the lantern from his hand, said he should manage very well
, and directed the man to return and tell his master of this arrangement. After thus parting, and pursuing his solitary way by means of his light, it occurred to the philosopher that it was a matter of very doubtful prudence in that way to announce to any idle evil-doer who might chance to be about, and of whom there were often many, that some benighted traveller was abroad. Accordingly he decided to extinguish the friendly light, and opening the lantern he blew out the flame, which, however, immediately reappeared in all its brilliancy on shutting the glass door. With customary scientific thought and inquiry he pursued his speculations and his walk for a short time with the aid of the friendly gleam, when, suddenly recalling apprehension of danger from thus proclaiming his walk at so late an hour, he again opened the lantern door, and,
thinking little about it, in like manner extinguished the flame, which, however, in like manner reappeared. With some slight reflection on his own carelessness or clumsiness, the doctor immediately re-opened the lantern, resolved at least on his third attempt to do the thing effectually, and proceed in the security of darkness. This, he thought, was done ; but, lo! for
the third time he now noticed with some surprise that the flame burst out afresh. Now, however, it was not merely astonishment, but his pious mind, ever ready to rise in holy meditations to the Father of lights, sought its fellowship with the Divine Redeemer. It became, in fact, a religious question whether this singularly repeated occurrence might not have been permitted for some gracious purpose! At all events, with meek and confiding humility, often so beautifully exemplified by this eminent saint of God, he crossed the grassy solitude, and having reached the road turned to the right, proceeding up the hill to Woolwich Common, the place of his residence, with the cheerful companionship of the oft rekindled light.
It is well known that in the Woolwich artillery exercises, the men are often employed in various exploits, not only of firing, but with floating bridges, or deep entrenchments, or earth-works, &c. It was so at that period; and from some cause or other a very considerable excavation, suddenly made between the time of his afternoon walk and his midnight return, had been left open, the deep fosse had not been filled in again, and no notice or warning had been thought needful, probably some further practice was intended the following morning. But how kind a Providence was that which so singularly interposed to prevent the broken and mangled limbs of the professor, or perhaps his dead body, cold and stiffened, being found in that chasm! At all events, on reaching the spot, and surveying the danger with the aid of his strangely rekindled lantern, he concluded, with grateful praises to God, his preserver, that but for the renewed flame he must have inevitably been precipitated into the digging, and might have been found there injured, and helpless, and insensible.
How much does such an interposition illustrate the fatherly care of God over his confiding children! And how many equally signal manifestations are recorded in the history of his Church! Each believer may rejoicingly exclaim, “My times are in thine hand."
BY THE REV. 1. M'LAREN, B.A. "Strive to enter in at the strait gate ; for many, I say unto you, will seek to enter in, and shall
not be able."-Lulce xiii. 24. This is Christ's answer, as is frequently 1 petty curiosity to know about the personal remarked on it, to a question which was applications of it. And whilst there is not turning the solemn matters of Christian a word in the Bible to rebuke, but rather truth into food for curiosity about other everything to encourage and foster, the people. “One said unto him," apparently questionings of pure and seeking spirits
, with reference to something that Christ who desire to know wisdom, and to underhad been saying, which is not recorded, stand as well as to love and believe, the “Lord, are there few that be saved ?" Scripture does set itself firmly and strongly And the reply is in spirit, “Never you mind against the treating of awful and solemn about other people; look to yourself: never questions of God's revelation as the pabulum mind whether few or many will get in, there for religious gossip, and the determining of will be a great many shut out, and take care who is, and who is not, a member of his that you are not one of them!” Now, I body and a sheep of his fold. It is not, should by no means be disposed to draw then, the spirit of inquiry that is rebuked ; from such an answer as this the inference but it is the spirit of narrow personal that is sometimes drawn from it, namely, curiosity; and it is the spirit of postponing Religion is a matter of personal concern, action for questionings, and of making and not for intellectual speculation. That religion a thing to talk about, and a mea: is not a true lesson at all. There is no
suring line for other people, rather than likeness between noble longing to under- making it a thing to live by, and the bread stand the principles of a great truth, and of our own souls.
So much, then, for the circumstances spirit encouraged-falling into reveries of under which my text was spoken. I wish aimless wishes, and thinking how grand it to fix, now, upon one or two of the prin- would be if this, that, or the other should ciples that lie in it; and I would just point | happen. If you want a thing, the first conthem out to you before I further elucidate dition is that you should will to possess it ; them. Christ says, "Strive to enter in at if you do not want it, then you may content the strait gate ; for many will seek to enter yourself with indolent wishes. The one is in, and shall not be able." Now it seems like lameness with its halting step ; tbe to me that there are three contrasts here :- other is the strong, firm march: the one is the contrast between striving and seeking; the putting out of the hand, to be drawn the contrast between striving to enter in at back again by “I dare not," “ I had rather the strait gate, and merely seeking to be in; not;" the other is the hand stretched out and the contrast between striving now, and with the muscles strong like iron, never to a future seeking, “when once the master of be retracted till it comes back with the gist the house is risen up, and hath shut to the in its grasp. You know well enough, men door."
So_that there are just these of business, that in the ordinary things of thoughts :- EARNESTNESS; EARNESTNESS life, wishing does not make the banker's IN THE RIGHT DIRECTION; EARNESTNESS book right, -wishing never got anything IN THE RIGHT DIRECTION NOW.
yet. And is it different in regard to the I. In the first place, VAGRANT DESIRES Gospel ? Not one hair's-breadth. Most ARE NOT ENOUGH WITHOUT A SETTLED PUR- people who come under the sound of it in POSE. “Many shall seek to enter in." Do churches and chapels, bave their times when you strive to get in! A vast difference they feebly, and aimlessly, and to no purthere is, my brother, between these two pose, wish—wish that they were Christians, states of mind. I shall have to speak pre- They are like a man lying on a bed, stricken sently about the use that has sometimes down with palsy, who by some strong and been made of this passage, as if it eaid to momentary stimulus is able to lift himself 28, "You can win religion by your own from his pillow for an instant, and reach effort—you can get to heaven bý fighting out his hand towards something; but, hard enough for it,” That does not enter weakened and made worse by the very into my present purpose. But I want to effort, falls back again into a long impomark
very strongly the two entirely dif- tence, and lies there half dead, Oh, my ferent states of mind, which I have put brother, seeking to get in is nothing; for in the simplest possible phraseology, in there is always a heavy counterpoise dragging the contrast between the mere seeking and you back. The feeble lifting of yourself,
with clipped and clogged wings, towards All men,
know what it is the Sun of Righteousness, is of no use; the to have wishes that never rise to the dignity weight of earth, and the weight of your of willing. We all know what it is to say selves, brings you down on to the plain about anything, “Yes, I should like to again. If ever you are to be insido the possess it ; I really do wish to have it: I gate, it must be by something else than am anxious about it." And we know, too, vagrant wishes; it must be by these being that between that condition of mind, when consolidated and made definite into a fixed conflicting purposes and wishes are tossing purpose. Do not say, “I wish ;" gay, “I the soul backward and forward between will!" them, like a shuttlecock between two battle- And then, just because every act of deci. dores--between that condition of mind, and sion about anything is a struggle and the the fixed and resolute purposo when a man more important the subject and the greater gathers himself up in his concentrated the act, the more certainly $q--we may well strength, and says no longer the word call this willing & strife. There never of the weakling, "I wish," but the word of arises from out of the confused fluctuations the strong man, “I will,"—there is a whole of the mind, a large and mighty purpose, world of distinction. The one is the voice without a struggle and a strife, The exerof weakness, and the certain road to failure ; cise of will is always a conflict. No man the other is the voice of strength, and the decides without a fight for it. He that has certain road to success. In your common no struggle has no will, but yields to the daily occupations, there is nothing more outward impulse whatever it be, and is fatal to a man's power, to a man's doing swayed by it as the long mosses in the anything that he wants to do, than that stream are by the flowing water. But
whenever the spirit rises in its power, and instead of being absolutely determined by outward circumstances asserts and exercises its power over them and its freedom, there, there is resistance, resistance against one's self, resistance against one's own purposes, temptations, weaknesses, resistance against a whole world of externals, resistance and struggle as the very essence of decision. And therefore we say to you, “ Many seek to enter in "_they stand outside, looking through the gates, and saying, “ It is bright and beautiful in yonder ; I wish I wer3 there :"_they seek; do you strive; for vagrant desires are nothing, without a settled, earnest purpose.
II. In the second place, Christ draws here another contrast between entering in at the strait gate, and merely seeking to enter in. I do not suppose that it is an undue refinement, or subjecting the fibres of his speech to too minute a microscopical examination, to see a large purpose and a definite meaning in the singular expression, in the latter clause of these words, « at the strait gate;' rather, I think, it coincides entirely with the whole doctrine of the Bible about the striving that is conjoined with the acceptance of the Gospel. To have entered in (as I interpret it), is to be in the condition of a Christian man, to be at peace with God, to be walking with the light of heaven upon my head, to be journeying on towards the blessed immortality that is waiting for us. All men desire that, more or less consciously, more or less deeply, more or less resolutely; but then, though all want to get in, all do not seek to go in " at the strait gate." What is “the strait
“I am the door ; by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture.” The strait gato may either be taken as meaning the one outward means whereby any soul is admitted to the narrow way of life—which one outward means is Christ himself-or it may refer to the one inward act whereby any soul receives the benefit of that outward means, and then the gate is the act of “repentance towards God, and faith towards our Lord Jesus Christ.” Probably it is more in harmony with the figure to think of being in, as meaning the actual enjoyment of a state of salvation, the strait road as the God-given means of salvation in the Gospel-even Christ and his word, and entering in as the act of faith by which we pass through that one access into the way
The second observation, then, which I make, is just this : EARNESTNESS IS NOT ENOUGII, YOU MUST HAVE EARNESTNESS IN THE RIGHT DIRECTION.
It is a strange thing that people will spend so much more trouble in being saved (as they think) in a wrong way than in being saved in a right. One of the mysteries--we might almost call it perversity—of all our hearts and tempers is, that we take no end of pains to force a way into that path of peace and blessedness, to become religious and sure of heaven—that we take no end of pains to force a way some other way into that narrow road, and will not go in through the gate which Christ is, and which God has ap. pointed. Oh, brethren, it is not so strange after all; for though I believe, with all my heart, that the doctrine of salvation by the blood of Christ, through faith in him, is congruous with all the deepest wants of men's souls, and coincides with the highest utterances of the noblest philosophy, yet there is the side on which it is both repellent to men's desires, and seemingly antagonistic to men's maxims; and whether it be from the side of inclination or from the side of reason that you approach it, there are difficulties in the way of your receiving it. It is uttered to all, every one; broadly, universally it comes; and yet it is a strait and narrow gate. Why? Because (according to the old saying), “There is room for all, but there is no room for any one with his pride to get : through it; there is room for all, but no room for any one to carry self in with bim." It is “strait,” just because you have got to leave outside these thingsyour fancy that you are worth anything, your fancy that you can do anything, your fancy that you can lend God a helping hand in the act of redeeming and sanctifying and blessing your soul. You have got to strip yourself of all that, the purple robes of pomp and the subtle burden of selfishness that a man carries ; and that is why-far more than because it grates against hazy and doubtful metaphysical principles--that is why men turn away from the Gospel. I do not want to scold ; God is my witness that I do not want to speak disparagingly or disrespectfully of any man's honest convictions : but I would yenture, very earnestly, not arguing at all
, but earnestly and as a brother, to appeal to any man who fancies he has got speculative objections to the grand old central doctrine of the Gospel (which