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watchful Providence of the enthroned Redeemer over His servants engaged in promoting the truth. The grand theme of the Acts of the Apostles is the Saviour in His exalted state in glory, carrying on the work which He began on earth, and confirming the assurance given in the Great Commission, that He would be with His faithful servants always, to the end of the world. This theme Dr. Dykes discusses with singular felicity of diction and impressive earnestness throughout this volume--presenting a fine example to ministers and others of the manner in which Scripture truth is to be explained and enforced. We trust that the author will hereafter give to the public, in a permanent form, similar expositions to the end of the Book of Acts.
The Vision of God, and other Sermons-preached on special occasions. By
Henry Allon, D.D. 2d Edition. Demy 8vo., pp. 303. Hodder & toughton, London. 1877.
As an instance that the religious public of our day are not tired of the reading of printed sermons, it may be mentioned that these discourses by Dr. Allon—though but recently published—have already reached a third edition. They appear to be every way deserving of such popularity-as they are, in many cases, rich and massy in thought, lucid and forcible in expression, and full of loving and glowing fervour on the subjects which are selected for illustration and practical enforcement. The discourses, which were generally preached on important public occasions-in England, Scotland, and America-are, in the greater number of cases, not based on single verses, but on passages of the Word, of greater or less length—and are, therefore, of the nature of lectures or expository sermons. They are on such topics as — The Vision of God and its Transforming Power ; The Christ of Experience ; Healing Virtue of Christ ; The Abiding Teacher ; The Service of Love; The Power of Intercession ; Unrealised Visions ; Voices of God ; Healed Men; For My Sake ; Spiritual Power; The Sorrow of Development. These diversified subjects are discussed with much fulness and clearness, and in all cases, with the practical influence of the truth for conviction and awakening, for sanctification and comfort, kept steadily in view. Several of these discourses, such as those on the Transfiguring power of the Vision of God, the Healing Virtue of Christ, the Service of Love, the Power of Intercession, Unrealised Visions, and for My Sake, take a high rank for lofty conception, vivid exhibitions of fundamental gospel truth, and effective eloquence. They cannot be perused, in a serious, prayerful frame of spirit, without leaving a lasting impression for good upon the memory and conscience. In a few cases we would hesitate to agree with the author in his statements respecting the value of religious creeds—the matter of Church order and praise in worship-inspiration, &c.,--but this does not prevent us from giving a high recommendation to discourses which are distinguished for numerous and diversified excellencies. Memorial Sermons: By the late Rev. Matthew Murray, D.D., Professor of
Tbeology, United Original Secession Church, Glasgow : with Memoir of the Author. Glasgow: George Gallie and Son. 1877.
Though it needed no commendation from us, we regret that it was out of our power to notice this most welcome volume in our last issue. We do so now with mingled feelings of gratification and sadness-of gratification that we have been favoured with such a memento of one so worthy of being held in remembrance, and yet of sadness that it should be called for, and that it has followed 80 quickly upon a similar volume, invested with a like mournful interest. But God's ways are not our ways. The memoir, like that of the late Mr. Smellie, from the same pen, though short, is admirably done, and must have been read with much interest and profit, by all who knew its subject. The sermons appear to have been judiciously seclected, so as to present a happy variety, both in the themes and in the mode of treatment. We are delighted to find several discourses bearing directly on our distinctive principles, and we need hardly say that they are eminently fitted to inform the ignorant, to conciliate unprejudiced opponents, and to confirm the friends of these principles in their attachment to them. One thing that has struck us in perusing the volume, is the frequency with which Dr. Murray was Font to refer in his ordinary preaching to the Reformation and what it did for our own and other lands, every suitable opportunity for doing this being, so to speak, instinctively seized by him and improved con amore. And we cannot but think that it would be well if the example set were more imitated by all ministers who are the professed adherents of Reformation principles. As to the matter of the discourses as a wbole, it is sufficient to say that, as was to be expected, they are full of the very marrow of the gospeldoctrinal truth, Scriptural principles, and Christian duty, being unfolded and inculcated in a calm, clear, weighty and impressive manner, which plainly indicates that the preacher could say, “we believe and therefore speak.” Here we have none of that mystical vagueness, that hazy indefiniteness, which so often passes current for depth and originality of thought, but a noble sample of “sound speech which cannot be condemned," because it sets forth, with no straining after rhetorical effect, “ the words of truth and soberness.” In its outward appearance, both in type and binding, the book is all that could
be wished, and it reflects much credit on those who have had charge of its publication. It has now been in the hands of many of our readers for more than two months, and sure we are that all who have carefully perused its precious pages, will agree with us in pronouncing it a very valuable memorial of one who was in an eminent degree “faithful and beloved,” and whose memory will long continue fragrant in the Church he loved so well and served so loyally.
The Proclamation of Banns in Scotland, its origin, history, and present position.
By Rev. Wm. Ewen, B.D., minister of Kinning Park Church, Glasgow.
William Blackwood and Sons, Edinburgh : Price one shilling. The Bible in the Furnace. A review of Prof. W. R. Smith's Article “Bible”
in the Encyclopædia Britannica. By the Rev. C. J. Whitmore, London.
Edinburgh : Maclaren and Macpiven. The Gospels Prior in Point of Time to the Epistles, and therefore not the Products
of a Post-Apostolic period. By the Rev. Robert Williamson, Ascog, Rothesay. Edinburgh : James Gemmell.
We are sorry we have not space to take up these pamphlets separately, treating as they do of interesting and important subjects. All that can be done, is to say that we have read them with much satisfaction, and can honestly recommend them to those, and they are many, who take an interest in the questions with which they deal.
DROMORE MANSE. — It is now three years since the Synod, io answer to a memorial on the matter, encouraged the congregation of Dromore to attempt the erection of a Manse, and recommended their case to the liberality of the Church. Tous encouraged, steps were at once taken towards its erectionthough not without fears of ultimate success. After several disappointments with regard to a site, ove very suitable in every way, measuring half an acre for manse and garden, was obtained from the Worshipful Company of Ironmongers, London, through the kind offices of Captain Stronge, J.P., agent for their Irish estates.
It is granted on a Lease of 99 years at mere nominal rent; compensation having been paid to the Tenant off whose farm it was taken. On this site has been erected a plain but substantial, comfortable, and commodious Manse of eight apartments, (with suitable offices,) according to plans and specifications prepared gratuitously by a friend in Ayr, which has now beeu occupied for a year by ihe minister of the congregation.
The appeal made for assistance in this good work has been most cordially responded to, not only by friends within the Original Secession Church, but also by many, and with no stinted measure, in other denominations. The outside contributions have come from members of all sections of the Presby. terian Church, from Episcopalians, Independents, Evangelical Unionists, Plymouth Brethren, and the Society of Friends--some of the most liberal contributions coming from quarters the most unexpected. The cases were extremely rare—though there were a few-in which application was made to any in our own denomination in vain. And these were at least counterbalanced by friends both within and without the body, who sent liberal contributions spontaneously
The building Committee think it due to their many kind contributors to submit through the Magazine the subjoined abstract of their Manse Fund, from which it will be seen that their income has met their expenditure in full, thus enabling the Manse to be erected free of debt-a result beyond their most sanguine expectations. Their income has been :
From Friends in Scotland. In Glasgow,
£110 2 6 Ayr,...
34 8 6 Kirkintilloch,
26 11 0
23 16 0
17 15 0
16 13 0 Arbroath,
13 10 0
12 0 0 Kilwinning (including 10s from Saltcoats), 10 5 0 », Aberdeen,
10 1 0
8 60 Pollokshaws,
5 11 0 Shottsburn,
2 5.8 Kirkcaldy, ...
2 2 6 Carnonstie,...
2 0 0 From Friends in England. In London,
£11 1 0 Liverpool, per Captain M Murtry,
6 10 0 , Manchester,
2 2 0
313 3 2
19 13 0
From Friends in America,
In Philadelphia, , Tennessee, ..
£3 0 0
4 0 0
Less Expenses of Collection,
£503 16 6
This sum has enabled them, carefully guarding against all unnecessary expenditure, to pay all claims incurred in erecting the Manse as these fell due. It has been thus expended :
£390 5 6
Contractor's Account, including Extras,
places by Contractor,
27 2 0
£503 16 6
Whilst it would occupy too much space to give the names of the Contributors, the following analysis of the subscriptions so far as can be done, apart from the congregational ones, may be interesting. 4 Friends Subscribed
£10 00 each. 8
5 0 0 4
3 0 0 1 friend
2 10 0 9 friends
2 2 0 each 24
2 0 0 3
1 10 0 16
1 1 0 161
1 0 0
0 12 6
0 10 0 each
0 7 6 4
0 6 0 43
0 5 0 1
0 4 0 1
0 3 6 8 friends
0 2 6 each 1 friend
0 2 0 1
0 1 0
0 10 6
402 Subscribers in all. There are several things still which it is very desirable to have done to the Manse property, which will only cost a few additional pounds; and it is hoped that these things also will be got done ere long. The Congregation, Session, and Minister, whilst grateful to the Great Head of the Church for granting to so many friends the ability and willingness to help in erecting the Manse, desire also to express to them their warmest thanks for the subscriptions which they have given, and the assistance which a number of them have otherwise rendered. Their prayer is that none who have lent their aid may fare the worse in temporal or spiritual things on this aceount, but may rather be blessed the more thereby, ever and increasingly knowing in their sweet ex. perience that “there is that scattereth and yet increaseth," and that “it is more blessed to give than to receive.”
POLLOKSHAWS.—The appual Social meeting of the Pollokshaws Congregation was held on the evening of Thursday, the 8th March, and was attended by a a large number of the members and adherents. The chair was occupied by the Rev. William B. Gardiner. After partaking of tea the chairman delivered an address on “Sensationalism,” and noticed the changes that had occurred during the year, and the additions that had been made to the roll of membership. He also referred to the encouraging attendance of young people in connection with the Bible-classes, and the large number of teachers and scholars attending the Sabbath School. Mr. Thomas M'Farlane, treasurer, presented a very cheering financial statement, which was to the effect that the revenue from seat-rents amounted to about £140, while the church-door collections had averaged about £3 5s. each Sabbath. An allowance of £40 was now granted to the minister for house-rent. Altogether the finances were in a very