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tion, and dropped it into the chafing-dish upon the burning coals and perfumes, which had already filled the room with their smoke; and as he did this, he commenced an indistinct muttering of words, which he continued during the whole process, excepting when he had to ask the boy a question, or to tell him what he was to say. The piece of paper containing the words from the Ckoor-a'n, he placed inside the fore part of the boy's ta'ckee'yeh, or scull-cap. He then asked him if he saw anything in the ink; and was answered 'No: but about a minute after, the boy, trembling, and seeming much frightened, said, 'I see a man sweeping the ground: •When he has done sweeping,' said the magician, “tell me.' Presently, the boy said, "He has done.' The magician then again interrupted his muttering to ask the boy if he knew what a bey'ruck (or flag) was; and, being answered • Yes,' desired him to say, · Bring a flag.'
A description here follows of a sultan's tent and various appearances, which, for brevity's sake, we omit.
“ In his mutterings I distinguished nothing but the words of the written invocation, frequently repeated, excepting on two or three occasions, when I heard him say, If they demand information inform them; and be ye veracious.'
“He now addressed himself to me; and asked me if I wished the boy to see any person who was absent or dead. I named Lord Nelson; of whom the boy had evidently never heard; for it was with much difficulty that he pronounced the name, after several trials. The magician desired the boy to say to the Soolta'n— My master salutes thee, and desires thee to bring Lord Nelson: bring him before my eyes, that I may see him, speedily.' The boy then said so, and almost immediately added, “A messenger is gone, and has returned, and brought a man, dressed in a black suit of European clothes: the man has lost his left arm.' He then paused for a moment or two; and, looking more intensely into the ink, said, “No, he has not lost his left arm; but it is placed to his breast.' This correction made his description more striking than it had been without it: since Lord Nelson generally had his empty sleeve attached to the breast of his coat: but it was the right arm that he had lost. Without saying that I suspected the boy had made a mistake, I asked the magician whether the objects appeared in the ink as if actually before the eyes, or as if in a glass, which makes the right appear left. He answered, that they appeared as in a mirror. This rendered the boy's description faultless.
Though completely puzzled, I was somewhat disappointed with his performances, for they fell short of what he had accomplished in many instances, in presence of certain of my friends and countrymen. On one of these occasions, an Englishman present ridiculed the performance, and said that nothing would satisfy him but a correct description of the appearance of his own father, of whom, he was sure, no one of the company had any knowledge. The boy, accordingly, having called by name for the person alluded to, described a man in a Frank dress, of course, with his hand placed to his head, wearing spectacles, and with one foot on the ground, and the other raised behind him, as if he were stepping down from a seat. The description was exactly true in every respect : the peculiar position of the hand was occasioned by an almost constant headache; and that of the foot or leg, by a stiff knee, caused by a fall from a horse, in hunting. I am assured that, on this occasion, the boy accurately described each person and thing that was called for. On another occasion, Shakspeare was described with the most minute correctness, both as to person and dress; and I might add several other cases in which the same magician has excited astonishment in the sober minds of Englishmen of my acquaintance. A short time since, after performing in the usual manner, by means of a boy, he
prepared the magic mirror in the hand of a young English lady, who, on looking into it for a little while, said that she saw a broom sweeping the ground without anybody holding it, and was so much frightened that she would look no longer.
“I have stated these facts partly from my own experience, and partly as they came to my knowledge on the authority of respectable persons. The reader may be tempted to think, that, in each instance, the boy saw images produced by some reflection in the ink; but this was evidently not the case; or that he was a confederate, or guided by leading questions. That there was no confederacy, I satisfactorily ascertained, by selecting the boy who performed the part above described, in my presence, from a number of others passing by in the street, and by
his rejecting a present which I afterwards offered him, with the view of inducing him to confess that he did not really see what he had professed to have seen. I tried the veracity of another boy, on a subsequent occasion, in the same manner; and the result was the same. The experiment often entirely fails ; but when the boy employed is right in one case, he generally is so in all : when he gives, at first, an account altogether wrong, the magician usually dismisses him at once, saying that he is too old. The perfumes, or excited imagination, or fear, may be supposed to affect the vision of the boy who describes objects as appearing to him in the ink; but, if so, why does he see exactly what is required, and objects of which he can have had no previous particular notion ? Neither I nor others have been able to discover any clue by which to penetrate the mystery; and if the reader be alike unable to give the solution, I hope that he will not allow the above account to induce in his mind any degree of scepticism with respect to other portions of this work.”
Not less strange and surprising are the results of fanatical excitement in this land of darkness. In the account of the magician, the mind is naturally led to the Bible narrative of Saul and the Witch of Endor. In the following description of a Zikr or religious festival of the Egyptians, we are reminded of some occurrences nearer home:
“ The eunuch above-mentioned, during this part of the zikr, became what is termed melboo's, or possessed. Throwing his arms about, and looking up, with a very wild expression of countenance, he exclaimed, in a very high tone, and with great vehemence and rapidity, • Allah !' &c. His voice gradually became faint ; and when he had uttered these words, though he was held by a durwee'sh, who was next him, he fell on the ground, foaming at the mouth; his eyes closed, his limbs convulsed, and his fingers clenched over his thumbs. It was an epileptic fit: no one could see it, and believe it to be the effect of feigned emotions: it was, undoubtedly
, the result of a high state of religious excitement. Nobody seemed surprised at it; for occurrences of this kind at zikrs are not uncommon.”
We cannot but believe, in reference to the strange scenes enacted by the followers of the late Edward Irving, that these individuals were given up to the special power of a lying spirit, as a chastisement upon them for the dreadful notions propagated by this sect respecting the person of the Lord Jesus Christ, derogating from the spotless character of the holy, harmless, undefiled Lamb of God. The heresy of Irving. ism is very clearly developed by Baxter, in his “ Narrative of Facts,” p. 111.
Here, then, lies the first error, in ascribing to Jesus that corruption of nature, as it regards his flesh, which belongs to all of us. The next error lies in putting out of sight the imputation of the righteousness of Christ to us, which is our wedding garment, and in which we are holy and without blame in the sight of the Fatherseen as standing in Christ; and in the stead of this, requiring us to work out a personal holiness, and, by the power of the Spirit, to make ourselves holy as Christ was holy. The first error strikes at the root of Christ's incarnation, and also of the atonement; the second subtly brings in again the covenant of works and bondage, Conjoined, the Mystery of Iniquity is deep and very subtle, but yet plainly such when examined by the word of the revelation of Jesus Christ.”
That something beyond the mere excitement of imagination was apparent in all the scenes of this lamentable delusion, is, we think, clearly proved by Mr. Baxter, in his very able and useful Narrative, from which we select the following passages, as distinctly proving our proposition. Mr. B.'s testimony is the more valuable from his previous sobriety of mind, and from the tendency of his profession towards forming habits of accuracy in the examination and reception of evidence.
The first is in relation to Mr. Baxter's first coming under the influence of the mysterious “ power," which was present :
“ At this period I was, by professional arrangements, called up to London, and had a strong desire to attend at the prayer-meetings which were then privately held by those who spoke in the power, and those who sought for the gifts. Having ob tained an introduction, I attended; my mind fully convinced that the power was of God, and prepared, as such, to listen to the utterances.
After one or two brethren had read and prayed, Mr. T- was made to speak two or three words very distinctly, and with an energy and depth of tone which seemed to me extraordinary, and it fell upon me as a supernatural utterance, which I ascribed to the power
God; the words were in a tongue I did not understand. In a few minutes Miss E. C. broke out in an utterance in English, which, as to matter and manner, and the influence it had upon me, I at once bowed to as the utterance of the Spirit of God. Those who have heard the powerful and commanding utterance need no descrip, tion; but they who have not may conceive what an unnatural and unaccustomed tone of voice, an intense and rivetting power of expression—with the declaration of a cutting rebuke to all who were present, and applicable to my own state of mind in particular-would effect upon me, and upon the others who were come together, expecting to hear the voice of the Spirit of God. In the midst of the feeling of awe and reverence which this produced, I was myself seized upon by the power; and in much struggling against it, was made to cry out, and myself to give forth a confession of my own sin in the matter, for which we were rebuked; and afterwards to utter a prophecy,” &c.
“ There was in me, at the time of the utterance, very great excitement; and yet I was distinctly conscious of a power acting upon me beyond the mere power of excitement. So distinct was this power from the excitement, that in all my trouble and doubt about it, I never could attribute the whole to excitement.”
Another scene, of a still more appalling and afflicting character, yet more clearly shews the same truth :
“But at the close of the meeting, a scene occurred which baffles all description, and on which, whenever I now think, the deepest feelings of horror and shame creep over me. Mrs. C. was made, after our exposition was concluded, to cry out in a most piercing utterance, that there was some one in the midst of us who was provoking the Lord by jealousy, envy, and hard thoughts of his servants the prophets. Regarding this, as we all did, as the Spirit of God, every one was cast back in examination of his own thoughts; and, as the gift of prophecy was a general object of desire, many tender consciences converted their admiration of, and longing after, the gift, into an envy and provocation. A feeling of dismay seemed to run through the company, but no one answered. The accusation was reiterated, with a demand that the person should step forward, and confess. Many present, one after another, came forward, and, confessing some sin, enquired if they were any of them the culprit. None of these, however, were recognised as such. The cry again went forth, and my voice was mingled with Mrs. C.'s, declaring the person who was meant was conscious of it. The agony expressed on many countenances was intense ; one man was so overcome, that his head fell on the chair, as though he were paralysed, uttering an unnatural moaning cry, which shewed the intensity of his mental agony. I was made in power to pray the Lord to discover the offender, and ease the consciences of his children. But after some time spent in this state, seeing the person was not found, we prepared to go home. As I passed Mrs. C. I took her hand to shake hands with her, when the power came upon her, and, holding my hand, she addressed me before all the company; beginning, by setting forth Jesus Christ, and proceeding, as the prophet of Christ, to declare that Jesus had sent his angel, and touched my lips with a living coal not many days past; that the word of the Lord proceeded from my lips, and I was a prophet, and more than a prophet, for I should speak with authority ; that I was a chosen stone in the temple of the Lord ; but warning the people not to rest in the vessel, for though I was a chief stone, yet I was not the chief corner stone: then proceeding to declare much trouble and trial was laid upon me for the church's sake, and calling upon the people of God to hold up my hands in prayer, that I might be borne above the trials and assaults of the enemy. When she had concluded, I turned round to Mr. Irving, intending to ask all present to kneel down to pray, when Mr. Irving silently pointed to a person who stood by, and looking to him I saw a power resting upon him, and he struggling to give utterance. I paused, and when utterance broke from him, instead of articulate words, nothing but muttering followed, and with this an expression of countenance most revolting. Lifting up a prayer to God to judge his own cause, and preserve us from judging unjustly of a brother; almost at the same moment an utterance broke from Mrs. C. and from myself ; . It is an evil spirit.' A thrill of horror passed through the company, and presently an utterance came from Mrs. C.— Rebuke the unclean spirit, and command him to enter no more into him.' The power came upon me, and I said, 'In the name of Jesus, I adjure thee, thou foul spirit, to come out of the man, and enter no more into him. The man, however, continued mut
his rejecting a present which I afterwards offered him, with the view of inducii
Not less strange and surprising are the results of fanatical exciter
“ The eunuch above-mentioned, during this part of the zil termed melboo's, or possessed. Throwing his arms about, and very wild expression of countenance, he exclaimed, in a very ! great vehemence and rapidity, * Al’lah!' &c. His voice gradua' when he had uttered these words, though he was held by a du him, he fell on the ground, foaming at the mouth;
We cannot but believe, in reference to the strange scenes
“ Here, then, lies the first error, in ascribing to Jesus
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tell him that even the evil spirit,” &c. ", notices this case, I his sin;" and that to his imaginations." i, and to shake to its ion in the present age; is which the idolatry of bodies, is
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voice of the stranger, which 3 which God has condescendroud creature, man!
in contemplating the present state ing almost daily more multiform. - ading; and its triumphs are facili
The church has settled down into of God's call to separation from it; u of “ tradition,” or expediency. All r and working of Satan. ristians to be found simply resting upon as the present. But it can hardly fail to that the authority of scripture is so far ilst in a vague manner they acknowledge yet endeavour to avoid the force of particular vuld doubt the allegiance of subjects, who vonarch, and yet continually and openly made o interfere with their habits and feelings; and bout the things of men than about the glory of ness, and reprobate with equal decision, everyity of the word of God—that written record of ren of God are to try all things, and by which e in accordance with the mind
of that Šaviour,
e stated, whether men will hear, or whether they professing body, calling itself Christian, may be lamentable fact is, that statements have been made ible, and that on the part of some from whom