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education for the young we may strike at the root of those heathenish opinions, practices, and prejudices, which have so powerful an influence over adults in preventing the reception of Divine truth; and have it in our power to prepare the youthful mind for listening with attention to the truths and historical details of Christianity, when they arrive at riper years.
Such seminaries would undoubtedly prove “nursing mothers” to the church, from which the greater part of the young would come forth to consecrate themselves to the service of the Redeemer, and to the promotion of the prosperity of his kingdom.
Now, in order to accomplish such objects, we require colleges to be founded, and professors appointed for instructing students and intended missionaries, in all those branches of knowledge with which they ought to be acquainted. We require, as their instructors, men of general information, of talent and piety, who will render their lectures and other instructions, as popular and perspicuous as possible ; and who, on every branch of science, will point out the moral and religious purposes to which it may be applied, and direct their students to render every department of human knowledge subservient to the interests of Christianity. We require, that our missionaries be possessed of vigorous mental powers, and that they be instructed in the best modes of infant education, and that they actually practice as teachers of such institutions, as well as in conducting those of a higher order, that they may be quite familiar with all the details connected with such seminaries, and be competent to superintend them wherever they can be established in heathen countries. We require, that they should have a competent acquaintance with the construction of the instruments connected with science, and modern improvements, and the manner of applying them to practical purposes, so that they may be enabled to explain and exhibit them in the countries whither they are sent, and to introduce among their inhabitants whatever may tend to gratify a rational curiosity, or to promote their physical comfort. For all such purposes, funds to
a considerable extent are required, for creating seminaries—for salaries to professors—for supporting students—for sending out 'missionaries—for supporting them for à season—for apparatus for infant schools and other seminaries--for books on general knowledge, and the instruments connected with science, husbandry, and the mechanical arts. And whence are funds to be supplied if the spirit of covetousness is not counteracted and subdued ?
We have, hitherto, been parsimonious in the extreme, in our contributions for missionary purposes, and we have been almost equally parsimonious in the training and preparation required for our missionaries, and in the equipment and encouragement afforded them. We ought to serve God, in all cases, and in this in particular, “ with our best;" with the highest talents, and the greatest measure of acquired knowledge we can command; and with all the auxiliaries for facilitating the work in view, which Christian wisdom can devise; and then we may go forth with confidence, trusting in Him “ who hath the residue, of the spirit,” that he will render our endeavors, when conducted with wisdom, successful for promoting the extension of his spiritual kingdom. Let Christians, then, seriously ponder on this subject, and consider whether there be not an urgent call addressed to them in the providence of God, to awake from their slumbers, and come forth with their treasures, in a far more liberal manner than they have ever yet done, to assist in rearing the spiritual temple of Jehovah.
Some years ago, I was conversing with a shrewd and intelligent gentleman on the subject of missionary operations, who seerned to think i that there was too much fuss and bustle about such enterprises, when so 'much is required to be done at home with the money expended on such objects. " I do not think,” he said, “ that the heathen are in so wretched and dangerous a state, as many of our religionists represent, and would have us believe ;—but, if I really thought, that they were perishing for lack of knowledge, and exposed to everlasting misery on this account, and if preach
ing the gospel to them would prevent their destruction —then I admit, that we all ought either to embark as missionaries, or sell the greater part of our property in order to send messengers for their deliverance. We ought even to sell all that we have to our last coat, if such an object might thereby be accomplished." And does not every Christian, at least theoretically, admit, that the heathen nations are in a dangerous situation, as here supposed, and exposed to misery in the life to come? Whatever opinions we may form of the salvable state of any small portion of the Pagan world, it is a fact, that the great majority of heathens, by the malignant passions and ferocious tempers they display, appear altogether unfitted and unprepared for the enjoyments of the celestial world, and consequently, cannot, in such a state, be admitted into the mansions of bliss, and if their existence be prolonged, when they pass from this earthly scene, it must of necessity be an existence connected with misery. It must, therefore be an object of the greatest moment to embark in an undertaking which has for its grand aim, to enlighten " the people who are sitting in darkness, and the shadow of death, to guide their feet in the way of peace," and to prepare them for glory and immortality. And although we were “to sell the half of our goods, and devote it to such objects, we should do no more than the importance and the eternal consequences of such enterprises evidently require.
There is now a call, and an urgent call, from tribes and nations in every quarter of the globe, to send to them the messengers of peace and salvation. "The wilderness and the solitary places, the isles and the inhabitants thereof are lifting up their voices” from afar to the people of Britain and America, to send to them the revelations of heaven, and missionaries to expound them. India alone, at this moment, requires at least, a thousand enlightened and devoted men to sow the seed of the Divine word, and to refresh the spiritual wilderness of that vast heathen territory, with the streams of salvation. Ethiopia is beginning to stretch out her hands to God, and many of her sable sons are now waiting for his salvation, and hailing the arrival of the
messengers of peace. The inhabitants of the frozen regions of Greenland, Labrador, and Siberia, are imploring Divine instruction from Christian nations,' and thousands of Negroes under the scorching suns of the West Indies, are ardently longing to be furnished with copies of the book of God. The Chinese are now beginning to enquire after the Oracles of heaven, and the arts and sciences of Christian nations. Even from “the ends of the earth," from the distant barbarous isles of the Pacific, the cry
is now heard in our land, “ Britons, come over and help us ?" Their inhabitants are trembling lest the messenger of death should seize them, before the ships that convey British missionaries appear in their horizon, and lest a sufficient number should not arrive. They are “ lifting up their voices from their rocks, and shouting from the tops of their mountains,” in expectation of the heralds of the prince of peace, and are ready to receive them with open arms. And will Christians, who profess to be infinitely indebted to the Redeemer who purchased them with his blood—who profess to regard SALVATION as of all things the most desirable and momentous, and who would tremble at the thought of the possibility of their own eternal destruction—will Christians, to whom God has given wealth, suffer their minds to be so governed by the “mammon of unrighteousness," that they will refuse to bring forth their treasures at his call, as the means of " delivering those who are ready to perish,” and rescuing their souls from destruction? If so, where is their love to the Saviour? where is their benevolence towards men? where is their belief of the importance of eternal realities ? and where is the evidence they give that they ought to be distinguished by the Christian name?
0.! into what a blissful scene might this ruin of a world yet be transformed, were covetousness thorqughly subdued, and were only those who profess to be Christians, to come forth with unanimity, and lay down their superfluous treasures at the foot of the cross ! In the short space of little more than half a century to come, we might behold celestial light diffu
sing its radiance over the most distant and benighted regions of the globe; the idols of the nations abolished; the savage raised to the dignity of his moral and intellectual nature, and his mind adorned with the beauties of holiness; the instruments of warfare broken to shivers, and peace shedding its benign influence over the world ; temples erected in every land for the worship of the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ ; the minds of the young irradiated with Divine knowledge, and rising up in wisdom, and in favor with God and man; the principle of crime extirpated, and poverty and wretchedness banished from the earth; the moral wilderness of the heathen world cultivated and adorned with every, heavenly virtue and grace ; the wastes and wilds of the globe transformed into fertile regions, and arrayed in all the beauties of Eden ; the hatred and jealousy of nations changed into benevolence, and a friendly and harmonious intercourse established between all the tribes and families of the earth!
And is not the prospect of the mere possibility of accomplishing such objects, sufficient to quicken every Christian activity and to draw forth every generous emotion? more especially when we consider that such events are predicted in the records of ancient prophecy; that the certainty of their being realized is confirmed by the declaration and the oath of God; and that the energies of the Divine spirit are promised to accompany our endeavors and to secure their ultimate success? Let us then, arise and 6 shake ourselves from the dust " -- from the dust of carnal maxims and worldly views; and be "strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might." “For as the rain cometh down and the snow from heayen, and returneth not thither, but watereth the earth, and maketh it bring forth and bud, so (saith Jehovah,) shall my word be that goeth forth out of my mouth; it shall not return unto me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall pros-. per in the thing whereto I sent it." “ I have sworn by myself, the word is gone out of my mouth in righteousness and shall not return, that unto me every knee shall bow and every tongue shall swear. For Zion's sake I