Imágenes de páginas
PDF
EPUB

interrupted. The God t>f love ami peace grant that it may ever be according to your present, most fervent feelings, and our most fervent desires.

But why is the commandment of the Saviour so emphatical? and why is the injunction so often and so earnestly repeated, by himself and by his inspired Apostles?

In Christians, even in Christian Missionaries, there are remains of corrupt nature. Nor should it escape particular advertency, that the circumstances in which Missionaries are placed, if in some respects favourable, are in other respects unfavourable, to uninterrupted brotherly love and unity. Brought together, and closely associated as the members of a Missionary Establishment are, they have opportunities and occasions to become minutely acquainted with each other, and to perceive and feel the di(Terences of dispositions, habits, and modes of thinking and acting, and the respective defects as well as excellencies of temper and manner and character; and being in contact with each other, at so many points, whatever of discordant qualities exists among them, will almost unavoidably be often brought into unpleasant action, and not unfrequently, unless great care he used to prevent it, into painful and dangerous conflict. Add to all this, that being separated from the great world,—from its various and ever varying connexions, interests, objects, pursuits and scenes, their unsanc tilled propensities and passions, whatever they may be, are necessarily circumscribed, and held within a very limited range: and, therefore, if exerted or exhibited at all, will be exhibited and exerted so as to bear with their whole effect upon particular members, or in the entire body of the Mission. The almost certain consequences are wounds of feeling, breaches of mutual confidence, disaffections, alienations, animosities, unkind debates, and embittered strifes. The old unsleeping adversary is too fully aware of all this; and too clearly sees the point to which his subtle artifices, and malicious efforts, may be directed with the surest success.

The emphasis of the injunctions, then,—the pathos of the exhortations on this subject,—is not without reason; not without special reason, in application to Missionaries. To maintain brotherly love .in its requisite purity, constancy, strength and tenderness, that you may all he inseparably one, as Christ and the Father are one,—will require much vigilance, much prayer, much crucifixion of self, much sanctifying grace. Put on therefore as the elett of Ood, holy and beloved, bowels of mercies, kindness, humbleness of mind,meekness, long-suffering, forbearing one another and forgiving one another; even as Christ forgave you, so also do ye. And give aJl diligence to keep yourselves always in this spirit.

». 4. Benbvo!ence Towards The Objects Ov Torn Mission. Your Mission is a mission of mercy, and your work is to be wholly a labour of love. For long and dismal ages of darkness, the dwellers in Owhyhee, and the neighbouring Isles, have been perishing for lack of knowledge. The Sun of Righteousness has never risen upon them; they have been without God, and without hope in the world, living in the wretched state of uncultured man. You are going to publish to them Good Timings,—to bear to them .the message of heavenly mercy and peace,—to present to them a Light, which shall dissipate the glooms, so heavily brooding upon them, and show them the way of happiness and of dignity, of glory and honour and immortality.

Your views are not to be limited to a low or a narrow scale; but you are to open your hearts wide, and set your mark high. You are to aim at nothing short of covering those Islands with fruitful fields, and pleasant dwellings, and schools and churches; of raising up the whole people to ati elevated stato of Christian Civilization; of bringing, or preparing the means of bringing, thousands and millions of the present and succeeding generations to the mansions of eternal blessedness.—Why should less be done, or designed, in the Sandwich, than has been done, or. is now in fair prospect, in the Society Islands.

But it is an arduous enterprise,—a great and difficult work. To obtain an adequate knowledge of the language of the people; to make them acquainted with letters; to give them the Bible, with skill to read it; to turn them from their barbarous courses and habits; to introduce, and get into extended operation and influence among them, tiie arts and institutions and usages of civilized life and society;—above all, to convert them from their idolatries, superstitions and vices, to the living and redeeming God,— his truth, his laws, his ways of life, of virtue and of glory:— To effect all this, must be the work of an invincible and indefectible spirit of benevolence; a spirit w hich is not to be turned from its purpose by any ingratitude, or perversencss, or mal-treatnient, or difficulties, or dangers; which suffercth long, and is kind; which, in the true sense of the first Missionary to the heathen, will become all things to all men; which will give earnest heed to the counsels of wisdom, and be studious in devising the best means and methods of promoting its great objects; and which most especially, and as its grand reliance, will humbly and thankfully avail itself of the graciously proffered aid of Him in whom all fullness dwells.

It is for Him you arc to do all, and suffer all: and the same mind that was in Him,—when He came to seek and to save that which was lost, and gave Himself a ransom for many,—must be in you. As his kingdom, to which it is your felicity to belong, and the interests of which only you are to seek, is not of this world;—like Ifim, you will withhold yourselves entirely from all interference, and intermeddling with the political affairs and party concerns of the nation or people among whom y ou reside; paying all proper respect to the powers that be, and rendering to all their dues;tribute to whom tribute is due, custom to whom custom, honour to whom honour is due: and showing unto all men a bright and impressive example, of a meek and quiet spirit,—and of whatsoever things are true, honest, just, pure, lovely, and of good report.

[ocr errors]

Mr.BiNGHAM,and Mr. Thurston,—to you is this grace given, that you should be sent forth to preach among the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ;—to make him known in all his grace, and all his majesty, to them that dwell in the Isles afar off, that have not heard his fame, nor seen his glory. The world—think what it may—has not an office in its gift, which is not annihilated, when compared with that of the Christian Missionary:—not a crown that would not fade into utter obscurity, in presence of that of Paul. The seraph nearest the Celestial Throne, might esteem it a distinguished honour to execute in a manner befitting its nature and design, the trust committed to you. Be not high-minded, but fear. You arc but earthern vessels. All your sufficiency js of God; and the whole glory will be his.

To you jointly is committed, this consecrated Mission, proceeding from the Bosom of Christian and of Heavenly love:—this little but precious Church, an emanation from that glory of Jehovah, which is rising upon our Zion; and destined, we trust, to be a light shining in a dark place,—shining more and more, until tlwse long benighted Isles shafl all rejoice in the perfect day.

See, that like Moses, you follow,—and faithfully instruct all to whom your care is to be unremittingly extended,— to follow the refulgent Pillar of unerring guidance; and that like Paul, you resolve, and immoveably maintain the resolution, To Know Nothing Among The People To

WHOM TOC ARE SENT, SAVE JESUS CHRIST AND HIM CRUCIFIED.

Messrs. Chamberlain, Holman, Whitney, Ruggt.es and Loomis,—the Apostles of the Lord had their Helpers. Gaius their host, and of ail the Church, Luke the beloved Physician, Marcus, Urbane and Tertius were Helpers. Their witness is in heaven, and their record on high. To the same high and holy work, you are designated as Helpers: and the same immortal meed is set before you. Sec that you so run, as to obtain.

Whatever you possess of various arts and knowledge and faculties, is to he lield as inviolably consecrated to the service. All will be needed in the different parts of tlic work; and all may be turned to important account.

To you it will belong to strengthen the hands and encourage the hearts of the Missionaries; to do what you can, in your several spheres, for the maintenance of the Mission, and for the instruction, improvement and happiness, temporal and eternal, of the poor pagans of the Isles, and especially of the rising hope of their families, of their nation and of the Church; and to shew to them and the world, that, in the various occupations of life, men may turn all their talchts, and all their labours, and all their cares, and all their sufferings to the honour of Christ, and to the highest happiness and glory of themselves and their fellow-beings. All this, however, you can do, only by keeping quietly, each one in his proper place,—pursuing cheerfully each one his proper duty,—and bearing joyfully each one his own burden, and affectionately the burdens of others.

Remember the Lord Jesus.—Though he was rich, yd for our sokes he became poor.Though he thought it not robbery tit be equal with God; yet he appeared in the form of a servant, and went about doing good. Remember too, that word of His—He that overcometh, the same shall be clothed in white raiment; and I will not blot out his name out of the book of life, but I will confess his name before my Father, and before his angels.

The Beloved Females or Tire Mission—are not to be forgotten. It was not in regard to things merely temporal that Woman was designed, by the sovereign goodness of the Creator, to be an help meet for Man; nor is there any law—of heaven—for excluding the sex from the participa-* tion for which the same sovereign Goodness has fitted them, in the toils and perils, the joys and the glories of recovering the common race, lost in consequence of her being deceived who was first in the transgression.

« AnteriorContinuar »