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and whom he would he kept alive; whom he would he set up, and whom he would he cast down.' Such was once the government of England, now the chosen abode of legal freedom. Our lovely sovereign is as much bound by the laws as the humblest cottager in the empire. The prince, the peer, and the peasant, are on a perfect level in the presence of the law. Every British subject is equally protected with regard to life, liberty, and property. The entire people dwell within the common sanctuary of legal protection. None are excepted, none are privileged. The law is supreme. To this divine fellowship of freedom, the missionaries of Christ are introducing the nations of Polynesia. I say, the missionaries are doing this thing. Those isles were visited by the students of science in search of facts, by the conductors of commerce, in search of gain, and by the voluptuous, in quest of pleasure—the object of all these men was to find good, not to impart it. It was reserved for the missionary of the cross, not merely to visit, but to become a resident on the islands, and to sacrifice all that the world holds dear, in order to promote the people's welfare. He took with him the fundamental element of British freedom, the gospel of Christ, and the results are such as we have set forth.
Oye philosophers and philanthropists, ye friends of the slave, of barbarous tribes and fettered nations, come and learn the sure method of accomplishing your object! So long as you despise the gospel, and deride its missionaries, you utterly deceive yourselves, and set aside the only instruments by which the aspect of our world can ever be transformed, and clothed in moral beauty. In vain you expect it from war, science, commerce, or legislation. That the instrument ap
pointed of God is the gospel of Christ, is established by the facts of this chapter. The true Christian missionary, once safely landed on the most benighted shore, will, sooner or later, prove “a light to lighten the Gentiles” who people it,-a little leaven which will ultimately leaven the whole of the surrounding region. Despotism, with its attendant evils, always flees, in the end, before pure Christianity. They cannot long coexist; and tyrants know it! To them the missionary, with his New Testament and his types, is more terrible than an army with banners! This fact explains the conduct of all despots, both of past and present times, towards these lights of the world. The friends of missions in England can look to the West Indies, and trace every particle of the marvellous change which has been effected in the lot of its once afflicted children, to the labours of its missionaries. Yes, one of the most glorious chapters in the future history of freedom will be composed of facts which relate to the sorrowful isles of the west. Ask the now rejoicing inhabitants of those lands whether the instrument of their deliverance was the soldier or the missionary. Ask them; they know their friends! Again, we point to Africa, the land of murder and blood, the mart of human flesh for the fiends of Europe and America ! There we point to trophies of freedom erected by the hands of the missionary, which are a sure pledge of deliverance for the whole population of that ravaged continent! O tell me what the genius of war has done for Africa, and I will set forth the feats accomplished by the genius of missions! Inquire of the Hottentot and the Caffre, whom they love, whom they trust, and whom they consider their best, their only friend, whether the missionary or
the military band? When the names of warriors are forgotten in Africa, or remembered only to be execrated, those of Vanderkemp, Philip, Moffat, and others, will live from age to age, engraved in the heart of ransomed nations! Again, survey the empire of the East; request the understanding, among the millions of Hindostan, to state the amount of their debt to muskets and the cannon of the military establishments of England, and at the same time to record the extent of their obligation to her bible and missionary societies. Inquire of them whether there is one substantial blessing connected with British rule, which may not be distinctly traced to the influence of British missions. We abide by the result of the investigation!
“O ye orators and philosophers, who make the civilization of the species your dream! look to Christian missionaries, if ye want to see the men who will realize it. You may deck the theme with the praises of your unsubstantial eloquence, but these are the men who are to accomplish the business! They are now risking every earthly comfort of existence in the cause; while you sit in silken security, and pour upon their holy undertaking the cruelty of your scorn.” *
* Chalmers's Sermon before the Dundee Missionary Society, in 1812.
TO JAMES DOUGLAS, ESQ., OF CAVERS.
ON THE RESULTS OF MISSIONARY LABOUR IN RELATION TO
SIR,—It is now about twenty years since the appearance of your “ Hints on Missions;" and since that time, you have favoured the public with your work on “ The Advancement of Society in Knowledge and Religion;" and with the article “ Missions," in the Encyclopædia Britannica. For these publications, the Christian world is deeply your debtor, and its guiding spirits are not insensible to the obligation. It deserves remark, that, while you are one of the very few great landowners in Britain entirely devoted to literature, you are the only layman of your class who has stood forth as the bold and unwearied advocate both of home and foreign missions. While your compeers are inflamed with the spirit of a low ambition, or are the slaves of still worse passions, the comprehensive and philosophic spirit with which God has endowed you, felicitates itself in the exalted region of contemplation, whence you descend from time to time to communicate, to the occupants of a lower and a busier sphere, the practical result of your high inquiries. May the life so laudably devoted be prolonged to a good old age, that you may witness the realization of many of those prophetic views with which your productions abound!
I have read most, if not all, that you have written ; and been studious to compare your abstract speculations with the practical operations of the mission field. Frequently have I been gratified in observing with what exactness the deductions of reason have been verified by the test of experience. Matters are, in many respects, altered and improved since the publication of your “ Hints,” and it cannot be doubted that they have materially contributed to that improvement. When you wrote that piece, the work of missions was, in many quarters, but just begun; and much that you desiderated, there had not been time to produce. Of this, indeed, you were fully aware. But the following passage, although true to the letter at the period when it was written, can no longer be taken as a correct description of the state of things.—“ Two great, though indirect, means have been mentioned for spreading Christianity,
-colonizing, and the introduction of the arts. It is surprising how little missionaries have availed themselves of the last. With the exception of some Moravian settlements, no instances, till very lately, could be pointed out to an infidel, of what missions had done for the temporal good of mankind. Can we be surprised, then, if men of thought, but whose thoughts are confined to the present world, should despise missionaries, who, instead of reclaiming barbarians to civilized habits, have sunk down to the outward condition of the people to whom they are preaching? And certainly