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about better times, to spare his people, and not to give his heritage to reproach; and if our interposition cannot stem the torrent, and our altars are finally to be overthrown by the sacrilegious hands of modern philosophy, let us have, as our last resource, resolution and fortitude enough to stand by them to the last, and allow ourselves to be crushed down and buried under their ruins." (pp. 84-5.)
It is lamentable to behold the want of harmony between the principles of stedfast perseverance, which the author has here laid down, and the conduct he himself has actually pursued. We now behold him abandoning India, "disgusted" (to use his own expression) with the pursuit in which he was there engaged; and, upon his return to Europe, not contented with his own practical opposition to the principles he advocated as above, but actively exerting himself to induce others to disown them likewise. If his present conduct did not render it very questionable whether those principles ever really had firm hold of his heart, we could not but say, Quantum mutatus ab illo! "How is the gold become dim! How is the most fine gold changed!"
The reader, it is presumed, will have now fully discerned the fallacy of the principle upon which the author has argued, and have perceived, that if there really had been no converts made from
among the Hindoos, this would form no sufficient reason for quitting the field of missionary enterprise. It would indeed form a sufficient reason for missionaries to scrutinize their methods of procedure with great accuracy, and to apply to their Divine Master, in prayer, for guidance into such a mode of operation as would bring down his blessing, but no sufficient reason for the abandonment of their work.
In the Gospel by St. Matthew an account is given of a difficult case, in which the Apostles themselves were baffled. The conversation which thereupon took place between them and their Divine Teacher, is so full of important instruction, and seems so applicable to the point in band, that the writer will be pardoned for transcribing it.
"And when they were come to the multitude," (says the Evangelist, speaking of our Lord and his disciples,)" there came to him a certain man, kneeling down to him, and saying, Lord, have mercy on my son, for he is lunatic and sore vexed; for oft times he falleth into the fire, and oft into the water; and I brought him to thy disciples, and they could not cure him. Then Jesus answered and said, O faithless and perverse generation, how long shall I be with you? how long shall I suffer you? Bring him hither to me and Jesus rebuked the devil, and he
departed out of him, and the child was cured from that very hour. Then came the disciples to Jesus apart, and said, Why could not we cast him out? And Jesus said unto them, Because of your unbelief; for verily I say unto you, if ye have faith, as a grain of mustard seed, ye shall say unto this mountain, Remove hence to yonder place, and it shall remove, and nothing shall be impossible unto you. Howbeit this kind goeth not out but by prayer and fasting."
Here the Apostles were instructed not to quit their work, but to do their work in a better manner. Instead of missionaries abandoning the Hindoos because of the peculiar difficulties in effecting their conversion, it would be a much more Christian method for the missionary to chide his own unbelief, and seek an increase of the peculiar qualifications requisite for the right discharge of his arduous and important office.
Examination of the Author's Argument against Missions to India, founded on the ill success of the Missionaries connected with the Church of Rome.
It is now proper to notice the author's representation of the ill success which has attended the efforts of Roman Catholic missionaries in India, and the inference he deduces from such failure to the prejudice of Protestant missionaries also. The question as to the extent of actual success on the part of missionaries of the Protestant persuasion, will be considered in the following chapter.
Upon the subject now before us, the author writes as follows:-"I will conclude, and sum up the first part of this account," he says, "by repeating what I have already stated, that if any form of Christianity were to make an impression and gain ground in the country, it is undoubtedly
the catholic mode of worship, whose external pomp and shew appear so well suited to the genius and dispositions of the natives; and that when the catholic religion has failed to produce its effects, and its interests are become quite desperate, no other sect can flatter itself even with the remotest hopes of establishing its system." (pp. 23-4.)
In the above paragraph the author intimates a total failure of the Roman Catholic religion in India; a failure so complete, that its interests in that part of the world are become quite desperate. In another part of his book the author however gives a statement which seems of a very opposite complexion.
"The Jesuits," he remarks, "began their work under these favourable auspices, and made a great number of converts among all castes of Hindoos, in those countries where they were allowed the free exercise of their religious functions. It appears from authentic lists, made up about seventy years ago, which I have seen, that the number of native Christians in these countries was as follows: viz. in the Marawa, about 30,000; in the Madura, above 100,000; in the Carnatic, 80,000; in Mysore, 35,000: at the present time hardly a third of this number is to be found in these districts respectively. I have heard that the number of converts was still