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the writings of the later prophets. “For world, and that which must over be the from the rising of the sun even unto the Church's great charter and authority, going down of the same my name shall be binding her by the most solemn obligagreat ainong the Gentiles, and in every tions to the sacred and benevolent duty of place incense shall be offered unto my seeking to evangelize the world. Jesus name, and a pure offering : for my name had died upon the cross; he had finished shall be great among the heathen, saith the the work of man's redemption on earth. Lord of bosts.”
He had made his soul an offering for sin, With the dawn of Christianity appeared and brought in an everlasting righteousness the further development of the benevolent for all who believed in his name. A mighty spirit of the scheme of redemption. When conqueror over death and him that had the in the stillness of night the plains of Beth- power of death, he had burst the barriers lehem were lighted up with a heavenly glory, of the tomb, and come forth the first-fruits and the peaceful shepherds were startled of them that sleep. by the angel of the Lord announcing to After spending forty days going in and them the Saviour's birth, that announce out amongst his disciples, the day came ment was made in terms which sufficiently when he must ascend to bis Father and intimated the merciful and catholic dis- their Father. Then leading them out to pensation which was then inaugurated. It the Mount of Olives, and ere he ascended was “good tidings of great joy" for all into heaven, he gave the Church her great people; and as again restoring man to the and grand commission on which her duty Divine favour, and resulting at once in and obligation are founded to prosecute the promotion of the Divine glory and the the work of missions so long as there is an welfare of the human race, it proclaimed, unsaved soul in the world. “Go ye there“Glory to God in the highest, and on earth fore, and teach all nations, baptizing them peace, good will toward men.'
in the name of the Father, and of the Son, Good will to men; to all men ultimately. and of the Holy Ghost” (Matt. xxviii. 19). The predictions of this are not more nu- “Go ye into all the world, and preach the merous and cheering than they are clear gospel to every creature” (Mark xvi. 15). and distinct. And these are gradually and The rapid spread of Christianity in the certainly being fulfilled in the providence first century; its splendid conquests; the of God. They depend for this on his will wonderful spirit of faith and love and selfand pleasure ; and being the eternal pur- sacrifice which its disciples manifested, pose of bis mind, we have the highest of bave won the admiration of all subsequent all security that they shall be fulfilled. times. It is impossible that it could be “Heaven and earth may pass away, but otherwise. For nothing wins our affections not one jot or tittle of my word, till all be and commands our reverence so certainly fulfilled."
as earnestness and thorough devotion in a Our Divine Lord's wonderful ministry good cause. And why should not that of mercy and active benevolence was not same devotion and zeal belong to us ? unattended by many circumstances which Like us, the first Christians were men, significantly intimated the universal spirit having similar difficulties, passions, and and intentions of his religion. Perhaps infirmities. the very first man whom he received into Three things specially marked the life the Church, and whose faith he so com- and action of the early Christians. mends to all time, was a Gentile and a (1) They believed profoundly in the soldier-the Roman centurion. There is truth. The vigour and capacity of their not a more touching and beautiful incident faith were great. They had no doubts. in his whole ministry than that of his in- Christianity was to them the only faith terviews with the poor Syro-Phenician that could save the world-God's salvation woman, whose simple faith in his power for the world, and mercy be so greatly extolled. These (2) They knew the value of the truth and similar instances of his universal love from a personal experience of its saving were like the streaks of early dawn on the power. Hence they longed to communidistant horizon of that gross dark ness and cate it and make it the possession of others, ignorance which then covered the earth, of all men. They spoke whot they knew, and were designed to intimate the coming and testified what they had seen. day when, taking mankind into the bosom (3) They were a wonderful people for of bis universul love, the Sun of Righteous- prayer. Their fervent convic'ions of the ness shall arise with healing under his Divine intention in reference to the world's wings, and the knowledge of God shall fill conversion-of the fulness, free ness, and the earth as i be waters cover the sea. certainty of the Divine promises--did not
But we hasten on to the explicit an in the least prevent them from the frenouncement of our Divine Redeemer's in- quent, continued, and earnest exercise of tention in connection with his cause in the prayer. Here, was their conquest-believing prayer. They prayed because they gratitude of mankind—are to be regarded believed ; and their faith was increased more in the light of recovering that which and strengthened by prayer.
was lost, and restoring it again to its place, Ah, we wonder at their great work of than of diffusing the Gospel over the faith and labour of love. Continents yielded earth. to them. Gigantic systems of superstition The seventeenth century was the great crumbled and fell before them. Satan's epoch of creeds, when the Churches of the kingdom was shaken to its centre by the Reformation set themselves to reconstruct word which they preached. But need we their faiths. The Synod of Dort, the wonder when we remember the faith and Westminster Assembly, the Savoy Conferhope with which they laboured; the fer- ence, and other assemblies of that kind, vent, believing prayer with which they in- readily occur to the mind, and the systemvoked the Divine blessing on their labours ; atic writers of England, such as Flavel, the deep and abounding spirit of brotherly Owen, Baxter, Howe, &c., exhibited the love which prevailed in the Christian com- genius, the sanctified learning, and pure munity ?
practical piety of England's greatest theoBut, alas ! this spirit of earnest laborious logians. evangelical piety ceased in the Church. The eighteenth century was one of cold The spirit of the world crept in. Philoso- formality and avowed infidelity. The phy, falsely so called, corrupted the purity English Deists - the fathers of German and simplicity of the faith. A brood of rationalism — were hard at work. The heresies appeared even in the days of the French Cyclopædists — infidels—were busily Apostles, and in spite of the numerous employed diffusing their blasphemous doccautions which these servants of Christ trines over Europe. The pulpit was giving addressed to many parts, soon flooded the an uncertain sound; Arianism or SocinChurch, marred her beauty, and destroyed ianism was in too many cases its avowed or her usefulness.
concealed doctrine ; and the pew was During the first three centuries there sealed in formality and the torpor of was a gradual declension. Like evening spiritual death. shades gathering thicker and thicker, until It needed the shock of the French Rethe blackness of midnight drew on, so volution to awaken a sleeping Church from heresy and strife ever increased. Piety her slumbers. This time God was in the grew fainter and rarer. Priestly pride and earthquake. The awful blasphemies which assumption supplanted the simple, spiritual the Revolution produced ; the daring imministry of the New Testament, until the pieties; the utter contempt of everything dark night of superstition and ignorance sacred and divine ; the attacks on the .covered the Church and the world. The Bible, the Sabbath, and on all the peculiar stillness of spiritual death was only broken and essential institutions of Christianityby an occasional voice, all too feeble to these, propagated by wonderful zeal and by assert the progress of degeneracy or to numerous agents in all the countries of make any deep and lasting impression. Europe, roused the Church of God, called
The fifth century gave the Church one forth champions for the truth, and, above of the greatest uninspired men she ever all, produced a counter-action, a missionary possessed ; a man who for genius, learning, zeal of an opposite character, that of soundness in the faith, courage in proclaim- sending forth the Bible and the missionary ing the truth, and missionary enterprise, to the ends of the earth. has never to our own day been surpassed. It was well the Church adopted this We refer to the renowned Augustine, method of defence. This is her true attiBishop of Hippo. God blessed his labours, tude and glory. This is her great work, made his voice heard to the awakening of on the faithful prosecution of which dea slumbering Church, and stirred him up pends her life, and vigour, and extension. to send forth heralds of the Cross, full of Her weapons are not carnal, but spiritual missionary zeal, to proclaim to a perishing and mighty, through God, to the pulling world, “Salvation by the Redeemer." down of strongholds. Ah, it were well if
Then came the glorious reformation from she remembered this more ; if all gave to Popery, when the truth was rescued from missionary enterprise a larger place in their the rubbish of anti-Christian error and hearts, in their prayers, and in their superstition, and the authority of the labours. God is our defence. It is ours Word of God was vindicated as the suffi- to labour for him—the hands to work for cient and only rule of faith. The time, Lim; the feet to run for him ; the head to however, for missionary evangelistic efforts think for him ; and the tongue, from the had not yet come, and the labours of experience of a living, loving heart, to Luther, Zwingle, Cranmer, and Knox, speak for him. labours so great, 80 disinterested, and suc- It may be said, then, that the history of cessful, as to entitle them to the everlasting modern missions dates from the close of
DUTIES OF PROFESSING CHRISTIANS.
the eighteenth century, and comprises a God promises it, and he will do it; in period of some sixty years. To our Baptist his own time, indeed, and in his own way; friends, it is generally conceded, belongs but he will do it. Nothing could be more the honour of being first in the field. The explicit and full in reference to the future immortal labours of Carey and Marshman of Christ's cause than the numerous pro-lay all the Churches under the deepest mises of the Word which assert its univer.. obligations.
sality. The veracity of Jehovah is pledged All the Churches followed in this great for this. All events are eilently conducing Gospel work. From this period dates our to it. Jesus must reign until all his great missionary societies—the London Mis- enemies are put under his feet, and then sionary Society, chiefly conducted by our the kingdoms of this world shall become the Congregational brethren; the Wesleyan kingdom of God and of his Christ. Society, supported by a Church that is conspicuous and honoured among Churches for missionary zeal and success; the Church Missionary Society, commanding the wealth I. To labour for the success of the and influence of the land; the missions of Gospel as for that in which they have the the Churches in Scotland, carried on with utmost hope and confidence. What we so much vigour and so manifest a blessing truly and earnestly believe impels us to: in India and elsewhere; and that of our action; what we believe feebly exerts but English Presbyterian Church, chiefly con- little influence upon us. Surely if there be fined to China.
a cause in the world wbich should engage Names of the highest Christian renown all our affections, and call forth our every connect themselves with all these societies. energy and hope, it is this. The greatest In no department of human labour have glory of the Divine character is connected talents so conspicuous, piety so pure and with this cause; the highest interests, the fervent, zeal so inextinguishable, labourers immortal welfare of the souls of men, is. so abundant, self-sacrifice so disinterested, intimately dependent on the success of the been employed. Carey and Marshman, Gospel. Ob, listen to the cry of anguish Morrison and Henry Martyn, Williams and which comes from the stricken heart of Duff, with a host of others, are names of humanity all over the heathen world. which the human family may well be Surely pity for their ignorance, compassion proud, and which a living Church will hold for their perishing souls, desire to achieve in perpetual gratitude and admiration. In their deliverance, should move us to put all that was pure in life, philanthropic in forth every effort to leave nothing undone action, noble in soul, these great mission- whereby the work of the Lord may be aries of the Cross will bear favourable com- completed, and the conquest of Satan beparison with the greatest and best of the come so signal that it may be said the sons of men. Of them emphatically it can dark places of the earth are become the be said they rest from their labours, and habitations of light, and truth, and purity, their works do follow them.
and joy, and Jesus reigns in every bome And what has been the success of and every heart. modern missions ? Have they been a II. To pray for the success of the Gosfailure ? Quite the reverse. Indeed, con- pel. (1) For a blessing on the Gospel sidering how partial has been the effort, ministry as the great means and instrument and how the Church is only waking up to of converting the world. (2) For all a due sense of her great, imperative, and missions, home and foreign ; for Sabbathsolemn duty, it may well amaze us that so schools, which connect themselves so intimuch has been achieved, and that to our mately with the Gospel ministry; for feeble efforts the Lord has deigned to grant young men's societies, which are founded 80 great a blessing. Look at the conquests and conducted on Christian principles ; that have been won, and the victories that and for societies for distributing tracts have been wrested from Satan and his amongst the neglected and outside popula-hosts. Gradually, but certainly, hoary sys- tion of our land. These and every other tems of idolatry are being undermined. agency of a similar character have a claim Gospel truth has found its way into many upon our prayers. In our closets, ia our a once dark and ignorant community, and homes, in our churches, in our social now cheers and blesses many a once be- prayer-meetings, on all suitable and fitting nighted soul. India, China, Africa, Islands occasions, let us fervently supplicate the of South Sea, are all coming under the in- Divine blessing and energy for all these fluence of Gospel truth and institutions, and similar agencies. Their darkness is being dispelled ; Satan's III. To give of our substance for the kingdom is being certainly destroyed; the cause of Christ in the world. This is the kingdom of Christ established ; and the great test of sincerity. Mere words go for knowledge of God filling the whole earth. nothing. We must give generously and
without grudging. It is absolutely essen- of the first-fruits be not consecrated to the tial. “ How can they preach, except they Lord ? be sent ?" But to send men requires Let us, then, feel an ever-deepening means ; to send them in adequate num- interest in the coming of the Lord, cultibers, abundant means. Therefore, let us vating a profound missionary spirit and a not forget this duty. How can we expect yearning love for the souls of perishing a blessing on any means we have, if some
PRESBYTERY OF LONDON.—The monthly now occupied by the United Presbyterian meeting of the Presbytery was held on Church, and hereby declares its willingness Tuesday, Nov. 13th, Rev. Mr. Edmond in to unite on this basis. In agreeing, howthe chair. The Rev. Mr. Saphir, of Green- ever, to make these matters 'open queswich, was elected Moderator for the half- tions,' the Presbytery desires it to be disyear, and in nis absence the Rev. Mr.Wood, tinctly understood that it means 'open'in of Plymouth, was requested to preside. the sense, not merely of tolerating diversity Among other things, the Presbytery con- of opinion, but also both of speech and acsidered the Union Committee's report. It tion, should occasion arise. III. In the was arranged that the Rev. Mr. Wright, of matter of Government grants for education Southampton, who had given notice at a the Presbytery regrets that this subject was former meeting that he would submit a introduced into the General Committee, on series of resolutions on the subject, should the ground that it appears unnecessarily to open the discussion. Mr. Wright accordingly complicate the negotiations. If the union rose, and said that the following were the were to be consummated on the basis of resolutions which he had drawn up :- making State grants of all kinds open ques“The Presbytery of London having taken tions, the educational difficulty would be into consideration the remit from the Synod solved by the trustees and managers of each in regard to union with other Presbyterian school being allowed to accept or decline Churches, with relative documents, resolved State grant as they might see fit. IV. In -I. That the unity, amounting almost to reference to the extent of the proposed identity in doctrine, government, order, United Church, the Presbytery of London and worship, which exists among the four is decidedly opposed, boih to what has negotiating Churches makes an early union been called a 'British Church, and also to a matter of Christian duty. The Presby- what has been described as the 'union of tery of London regrets that the mutual re. the four Churches in their entirety,' for the cognition of this unity was not made the following reasons-1st. Because the extent starting-point in the negotiations. II. Tee of the United Church would be too great Presbytery finds, that in regard to the for efficient government, unless the right questions of ecclesiastical establishments of appeal to the Supreme Court were to and State endowments of religion, that the cease, a constitutional change in which the Free Church of Scotland, the English Pres. Churches in Scotland would not concur. byterian Church, and the Reformed Pres- 2nd. Because such a union would imply byterian Church, maintain a positive testi- the subordination of English interests to the mony in favour of a union of Church and prevailing opinions and policy in Scotland, State on what each conceives to be Scrip- and would be detrimental to the extension tural principles ; and also that in certain of Presbyterianism in England. 3rd, circumstances it is the duty of the State to Because no reason can be urged for a offer, and the Church to accept, endow- British Church which is not equally strong ments or money grants for the support of for a Church embracing the three kingdoms. religious worsbip; and that the United 4th. Because, if the union included the Presbyterian Church on the other hand bas four Churches in their entirety, it would ceased to hold any positive testimony on embrace the Irish section of the United the subject, but allows her office-bearers Presbyterian Church, which had its origin and members to entertain any opinions in a protest against the Regium Donum. they please on these matters. The Pres. The representative of the United Church in bytery of London believes that union is Ireland would be a body maintaining an possible only on the basis of the position active protest against our brethren of the Irish Presbyterian Church. 5th. Because probationer within the bounds of this in the opinion of many, both in England Presbytery. Mr. Robert Scott for the sesand Scotland, the abandonment of the idea sion, and Mr. John Charlton for the conof national Churches, with the historical gregation, at Falstone, appeared and reassociations connected therewith, in order quested the Presbytery to sustain this call, to form a large Dissenting sect, would be a and take the usual steps in regard to it. sacrifice of influence and means of useful. The commissioners having been heard, on ness for which there world be no adequate the motion of Mr. Johnman, seconded by compensation. V. The Presbytery of Lon- Mr. T. W. Brown, it was agreed unanidon would take this opportunity of sug- mously that the comn'issioners having degesting to the General Committee on Union clined to satisfy the Presbytery in regard to whether, in the event of its being found the arrangement formerly entered into with impossible to overcome the difficulties in the Home Mission Committee, the Presbythe way of an incorporating union, it might tery decline to sustain the call in hoc statu, not be desirable in the meantime to attempt and instruct the Moderator and session at a federal union.” After an able speech by Falstone to ascertain the mind of the conMr. Wright in support of these resolutions, gregation, and report to the Presbytery at the Rev. Mr. Chalmers moved that the re- a meeting to be held this day fortnight. solutions lie on the table till the next ordi- An extract minute of the Home Mission nary meeting. The Rev. Mr. Ballantyne Committee in regard to Seaton Delaval was seconded Mr. Chalmers,which was agreed to. laid on the table and read ; and in terms
PRESBYTERY OF NEWCASTLE.—This Pres- of recommendation contained in said ex. bytery met at Blyth on the 15th of Novem- tract, Mr. Murray was appointed to meet ber. Present: the Rev. Andrew Wilson, with the managers and people at Seaton Moderator ; the Revds. T. W. Brown, G. Delaval with a view to a satisfactory Wallace, J. Brown, W. A. P. Johnman, arrangement for the future. Mr. Johnman and J. Reid ; with Messrs. J. A. Davidson, having stated that the continuance of the J. Hedley, jun., and J. Willis, Elders. The Home Mission grant to Darlington at the minutes of laet ordinary and subsequent rate of £50 a year would greatly contribute pro re nata meeting having been read, were to the advancement of the congregation, sustained. An Elders' commission from the Presbytery agreed to instruct the Clerk the session at Wark in favour of Mr. Roger to make a representation to this effect to the Clark, one of their number, appointing him Home Mission Committee. The following to represent said session in this Pres- were appointed to examine the schools at bytery during the current year, was laid on Biyth and Seaton Delaval, viz., Mesers. T. the table, read, and sustained, and his name W. Brown, J. Brown, and J. Reid, Miniswas added to the roll. Mr. Johnman ters; Mesers. Hedley, jun., and Willis, stated that a session had been constituted Elders. The Presbytery agreed to defer at Darlington, whereupon the provisional consideration of Mr. Murray's motion till session there were discharged with thanks next meeting. Mr. T. W. Brown gave nofor their services. An Elders' commission tice that at next meeting he will move that from the session at Darlington in favour of a Committee be appointed to inquire as to Mr. Robert Lamb, one of their number, the state of education within the bounds ; appointing him to represent said session in to obtain information as to the schools now this Presbytery during the current year, in operation, especially with regard to their was laid on the table, read, and sustained, constitution and connection with this and his name was added to the roll. Presbytery; and to report whether any Reasons of absence from Messrs. Black, further steps can be taken for promoting Jeffrey, and Murray, were read and sus- the education of the young. Also that he tained. The Clerk stated that, as in- will move the Presbytery to overture the structed, he had written to the ininisters of Synod in regard to the establishment of a the Berwick and Northumberland Presby- cheap publication, and the setting apart of teries, and transmitted the finding of the a portion of the Home Mission funds for Presbytery on the subject of union to the evangelistic purposes. The Presbytery Convener of the Synod Committee on then adjourned to meet in the Jobo Knor Union. A call from the congregation at Church, Newcastle, on Tuesday, the 27th Falotone to Mr. Thomas Bruce, a pro- current, at 10 a.m. The meeting closed bationer of the Free Church of Scotland, with prayer. bearing 132 signatures, was laid on the PRESBYTERY OF BERWICK.This Pres. table ; also the edict appointing modera- bytery met at Bankhill Churcb, Berwick. tion, duly served and attested. Mr. Bruce's on-Tweed, on the 23rd October. Sederunt: license by the Free Presbytery of Edin. Rev. Mr. Dunn, Moderator ; Messrs. burgh, and Presbyterial certificate from the Fraser, Terras, Cant, Valence, and Scott, Free Presbytery of Glasgow, were laid on Ministers ; Messrs. Gardiner and Lilley, the table and read, and he was admitted a Elders. The Clerk informed the Presbytery