« PrécédentContinuer »
THE CHRISTIAN OBSERVER,
VOLUME THE SIXTEENTH,
EXTRACTS FROM UNPUBLISHED LET
TERS OF THE LATE REV. JOHN
we cannot meet face to face, the different distances of Russia, or
Silesia, or even Bedford, are little (Concluded from p. 764.) more than ideal. “May I write to you again af- future turns in Providence may ter so long a silence? I hope I lead you again to England, espemay, for I feel I must. I have se- cially in my time, I koow not. I riously purposed writing for some hope, however, to meet with you time past; and I believe I should at last before the throne of God. have addressed a letter to you at In the mean while, wherever you P.
the course of this live, I shall think of you with afmonth, had not Mr. L-called fection, and shall find a pleasure last week, and told me that I might in the persuasion that I am not forwrite by your brother, who ex- gotten by you. The earth is the pected to meet you soon in Silesia. Lord's; and in our widest separaYour husband, and my friend, it tions we are but as in different seems, is removed from this poor rooms of the same great house, and world: I call him my friend, fotequally under the eye of the same though the interval of our personal Great Shepherd, who affords the acquaintance was short, I recollect same proofs of his power and care pleasing tokens of his friendship, to all who put their trust in him. both at that time and since: the "Dear Miss PB, my Lord grant that we may all meet at dear E
dear E--, Mr. L--, and many last in that land wbere friendship others with whom we have had and happiness will be complete. sweet fellowship, are gone before And may God bimself be a hus. The longer we live, the more band to you, and a father to your
we shall resemble the trees wbich children.
drop their leaves in swift succes. “What a changing world do we
sion as the winter approaches. live in! But the unseen state to May we be followers of them who which we are hasting is unchange through faith and patience inberit able. They we shall be at bome: the promises, and all shall be well we shall pass from waking dreams at last. Our sweet E
at the and shadows to realities.
age of fourteen years and eight moval into Germany will bring you months, met her summons with the considerably nearer to us: but if faith and comfort of a martyr. The CHRIST. OBSERV. App.
Lord was very gracious to her and liable to wither and decay, unless to us, in the circuinstances of her watered by a Divine blessing, dismission; and though to this day wbich can only be expected so far I can seldom write or speak of her and so long as it is maintained in without dropping a tear, I never se- a due subordination to wbat we riously regretted her departure for owe to our Supreme Friend; for a single moment.
he will not endure a rival in our " As a minister, I am happy in an hearts. Mutability is essential to affectionate people : many of them a creature; and fickleness and inare eminently religious, and we constancy enter deeply into the nawalk in peace.
The Lord does ture of fallen creatures. I have lived not withhold his presence from our with my nearest earthly friend more ordinances. My service is my than thirty-seven years, and still pleasure, and I am bound to say, our affection is preserved. Of all
the lines are fallen to me in a my temporal mercies, none ought pleasant place.' But I still am a to affect me
more sensibly than poor, weak, inconsistent creature in this; for my ingratitude to God, myself, and have cause for wonder my best Friend, has often deserved and praise, that God has not as yet to be punished in this way. I have taken bis word of truth out of my a few other friends who are not mouth, and forbidden me to make weary of me yet. But though I mention of his name any more.
could make out a long list of per“I shall hope in some good day to sons whom I love, and who are receive a letter from you. We long kind to me, the peculiar intimacy to hear of your welfare. You have and peculiar circumstances which a right to delay writing as long as are required to constitute friendI have done; but I hope you will ship, in my sense of the word, can not. When my friends are called hardly be found in many persons. away, I frequently regret that I did To have a few select friends, the not visit them, or write to them good will of a large acquaintance, oftener while they were within my and benevolence to all, even to reach: but my connexions and en- strangers and enemies for the Lord's gagements are so multiplied and sake, is, I believe, tbe happy pridiversified, that I know not which vilege of some persons, and more *way to turn, nor how or when to cannot be expected here. Hereafter secure a day, or indeed an hour our love will expand, and take in with certainty, to do what my in- all (perhaps equally) who are caclination would prompt me to per- pable of receiving it.” form. I have not behaved worse to you than to many others whom I “After so long a suspension of truly love; and if
our correspondence, a letter from rage me again, I will try to bebave you was doubly welcome to us; better to you in future.
especially as it gave me the great А
part your last is on the pleasure of finding your heart still subject of friendship. I believe, yea, alive in the love and the ways of our I am sure, there is such a thing; Lord. He is the Sun of the soul, but true friendship can only subsist wbether we live in London, Pbetween those who are united to or Hernbuth. But how many things God by true religion. Worldly do we meet with, from withia and friendships, though they may en- from without, which have a tepdure a wbile, are always brittle as dency to blind the eyes of our glass, liable to be broken by a mind! I congratulate you that, in slight blow; and, like glass, when all the changes you have passed broken they are irreparable. Nor through since you left us at Olney, is Christian friendship absolutely His unchangeable mercy bas presecure. It is a beautiful plant, but served you. Ab, Madam! were it
not for his power and grace, which there as a guest, and about twelve have supported us,
should since we last parted with you. bave sunk, and made shipwreck What different scenes (at that time of faith long before now. But 'unthought of) have we known He has delivered, he does deliver, since! What blessings receivedand he gives us good encourage
what trials—wbat multiplied proofs ment to hope, that he will deliver of the Lord's goodness, and of our
even unto the end. We are own unworthiness! We have sufferstill travelling through a wilder- ed many things, I hope not altoness, and we know not what we gether in vain. may yet meet with before our pil- " For myself, I am still healthy, grimage is finished : but every step and am not disabled from performlessens our distance from our hea. ing my public service as a minisvenly horne.
ter; and I bless the Lord that I am « Mrs. Newton bas had very in.. not weary
of it. Still it is my different health this winter, and is pleasing employment. I can so far, still but poorly. The close of the from my heart, magnify my office, last year, and the beginning of this, that I think I would
not exchange it was a time of great trial with us. for any rank or wealth this world But our gracious Saviour has pro- could afford. To be a minister of mised, that all things shall work to- the Gospel, appears to me more gether for good to them that love honourable, more desirable, than him. Not only their comforts, but to be prime minister of an empire. their crosses, are mercies; they are I am likewise well pleased with my sent by the same hand ; they are situation. I was so at Olney ; but designed to promote the same end; this affords a larger sphere of proand I doubt not but hereafter we bable usefulness, and more extenshall clearly see, that we bave no sive pleasing connexions. Were it less cause to praise him for the bit- not for the law of the flesh, which ter than for the sweet. Blessed be warreth against the law of my his Name for a good hope, that the mind, and for what I suffer, by hour is coming when the bitter will sympathy, with my dear Mrs. Newbe no longer needful.
ton in her illoess, I should have "O what humility, dependence, bardiy any thing worthy to be callgratitude, and devotedness of hearted a trial. become a redeemed sinner! There “ Should the Lord in bis proviis little worth thinking, talking, or dence lead you to England, wbile I writing about, but what has a near am living, I promise myself much connexion with Jesus Christ cruci- pleasure in seeing you again. Disfied ;-who he is, what he has tance and absence have not abated done and suffered, where he is, our regard for you. Our times and what he is now doing, and what we ways are in good hands. If we are may be able to do while we are permitted to meet upon earth, I here to show forth the praises of trust it will be to mutual comfort Him who has called us out of dark- and benefit. If not, it will be still into his marvellous light ! better to meet in heaven.
In the Other subjects,in comparison of this, mean time, we may often meet in however important in the view of spirit at the Throne of Grace, to the men of this world, are trivial as which in all places we are equally the sports of children. Blessed be
May the Lord bless you God for his unspeakable Gift! more and more, you
chil. “I often recall to mind the con- dren! I should be glad to see them versations we had, at different all. I hope you and they will not times, in my study at Olney. I be forgotten by me ; and I request suppose it is now about fourteen your remembrance in prayer for me years since we first received you and mine.
* I am now far advanced in my in the day of trouble. While she sixty-fourth year, yet feel at pre- was living, though my feelings were sent but few of the infirmities of often painful, I preached as usual ; old age. It is time, however, for and since ber dismission, I have me to consider that I grow old still gone on : and on Sunday evenapace. O for grace to fill up the ing last, I was enabled to preach uncertain remnant of life, as be- her funeral sermon from Habakkuk cometh a saint, and then to die as iji. 17, 18. becometh the sinner,-looking to “My dear
is now alJesus, and to him alone, for accept- most my only remaining earthly ance and salvation. May I find tie to this world. I see nothing of mercy of the Lord in that day, a temporal nature worth living for; wben flesh and heart shall fail ! yet I hope to be willing and thank
ful to live, while the Lord has any “ Though my acknowledgment service for me to do; or rather, of your favour has been so long de- till his wisdom and goodness sball layed, I hope you will believe see fit to remove me. If be should that it gave me great pleasure to see fit to lay me aside from public hear that you are in health, that service, I should still promote bis your are so near, and that you en- glory, and exhibit a proof of bis courage me to expect I may yet faithfulness, if he will enable me to see you before you return to Gere suffer, with patience, whatever be many.
may appoint me.
I wish to put “When your letter came, my myself absolutely, and without redear Mrs. Newton was so low that serve, into his bands; and to be. I believe I could not mention you lieve that he will choose for me to her. She had a complication of better than I could choose for mymaladies, and was a great sufferer; self. Only may He grant, that though it pleased the Lord, for the while I do live, I may live to him, most part, to exempt her from much and for him ; and that when I die, very violent pain. She was released I may die in him; tben all shall be from this state of sin and sorrow, well. As to particulars, I ain to on the evening of the 15th instant. say, Not my will, but thine. The Lord favoured her with admi. " Many changes, as you observe, rable patience: and her natural good have indeed taken place, in the spirits held out to the last ;-only course of eleven years, since you that three days before she went last visited at the vicarage of home, she gave no signs of life but Olney. My lot, during this space, by breathing. Now, I trust she is has been, in the main, a highly where the wicked cease from troue favoured one. I have not been bling and where ibe weary are at without trials ; but comforts have rest.
more abounded. My feelings have “As you well knew her, and been most painfully exercised by knew my very strong endeared at the removal of dear friends, several tachment to her, you will ascribe of our own family ; and of others it to the goodness and power of the more dear, or more sensibly Lord, that I was so wonderfully missed, than Mr. and Mrs. Bsupported during her illness, and They were friends indeed; with have been 'still supported under them I had a union of heart. Nor her departure. O magnify Him have I lost them. They are gone with me, and let us exalt bis name but a little before. I hope to meet together! He is, indeed, All-suf them again to unspeakable advanficient, and can manifest his tage. I have no reason to think strength in the weakness of bis it will be very long first, as I am poor creatures, to whom he has advancing apace in my sixty-sixth given a warrant for calling on him year. The Lord's time is the best.
May I wait patiently and watch- us. He has delivered, he doth fully all my days, till my appoint- deliver, and therefore we trust in ed change shall come, and then be - Him that he will yet deliver us. found with my loins girded up and No great matter where, or what, my lamp burning.
we are in this transient state, so o You likewise, my dear madam, that we are in the path of duty, have had your trials; but you are and in the exercise of holy subalive to say, under them all, The mission to his will. The same Lord upheld me, and out of them sun shines at London, Bedford, all He delivered me. It is good and Hernhuth. And the way to scriptural logic to infer what he heaven is equally open and near will do, from what he has actually from every place.” done. So the Apostle did before
BRITISH AND FOREIGN BIBLE number of societies is already stated SOCIETY.
to be sixty. To increase the inThe Thirteenth Report of this So- terest which has been excited in ciety, lately published, with the the Netherlands, in favour of the extracts of correspondence, . are principles of the institution, the fully equal in interest to the pre- Reverend Doctor MacIntosh, at ceding ones; and we therefore Amsterdam, has recently published regret that from their length we a Dutch translation of the Twelfth can give only a general abstract of Report of the British and Foreign the former, referring our readers Bible Society. for the latter to the volume itself. The Hanoverian Bible Society, We sball, of course, omit, as far as under the patronage of bis royal possible, such parts as have already highness the Duke of Cambridge, appeared in our own pages. has completed the printing of an
Of the Continental Societies in edition of 10,000 copies of Luther's existence at the period of the last German Bibie, most of which have anniversary, it may be generally already been put into circulation ; observed, that their attention to and another auxiliary has been promote the object of their esta- added to that institution, by the blishment demonstrates tbeir in- establishment of an East-Frisia Bicreasing sense of its utility and im- ble Society, for the encouragement portance;
that the beneficial effects of which, 1001. bave been voted resulting from the circulation of the to the Hanoverian Society. A Scriptures have proved powerful letter from a correspondent at inducements to continue and en- Osnaburgh contains the pleasing large this benevolent work; and intelligence, that “their Catholic that, if its operation has in any de- fellow citizens labour with them gree been circumscribed by the hand in hand, and many of that general distress which has been communion show a readiness to more or less felt on the continent, obtain and peruse the Scriptures. the zeal for carrying it on has not, The exertions of the Prussian on that account, abated.
Bible Society continue to be diliThe Netherlands Society greatly gently and most usefully pursued. flourishes : branches and associa- To the eight auxiliaries united to the tions are multiplying in the northern central society in the course of its provinces of the kingdom, and the first year, twelve more were added