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MEMOIR OF JOHN JCENICKE,
MINISTER OF THE GOSPEL AT BERLIN, LATE HONORARY GOVERNOR OF THE
CHURCH MISSIONARY SOCIETY.
The Apostle's warning, that here isted. The pastor of the colony, we have no abiding city, but must whose name was Pokorny, was a seek one to come, is verified in faithful minister, and his exhortaevery generation. Individuals, fa tions soon engaged the attention of milies, and whole churches, have
It may be supfelt it, and under a pressure of posed that he had been piously adversity, have come out of their brought up, as his parents had own land like Abraham, into one emigrated for religion's sake; so that the Lord has shewn them. that it will not appear surprising, No country has gained more by that the first effectual impression such emigrations than Prussia. The he received of divine truth, was not French refugees found an asylum of actual wickedness, but of defithere, from the persecutions of ciency in due thankfulness for the Louis XIV, and not only intro gift of God in his Son, which is duced their arts and manufactures, eternal life. He was struck by to the great advantage of a rising these words in a sermon; · Even country, but their descendants if from your infancy, you had proved faithful to her interest, and known no other sin, but that of not fought with valour in the late war having always loved the Lord Jesus against the invading armies of Na
with all your heart, you would be poleon. Frederic William I. em guilty before God.' This sentence, ployed religious toleration as a which the natural mind could not means of increasing the number understand, and which many an of his subjeets : seventeen thousand anxious one would stumble at, may Protestants from the Duchy of be taken as a specimen of the Saltzburg obeyed his invitation, Bohemian method of appealing to and a more important accession
the heart. While many disregard was gained in 1732, by the arrival the statutes of the Lord, and are of a number of Bohemian families, far from righteousness,* Jænicke whom the persecutions which fol had outwardly kept the commandlowed the revival that had taken ments from his youth, and thus place in 1720, had driven into was near to the kingdom of God; exile. When they requested a he needed however the quickening settlement from the King, he re impulse of a Redeemer's love, and plied with his characteristic mix from that time he looked
his ture of frankness and rudeness, former peace as a mistaken security, . If
you are a good sort of people, and began his course anew. I am willing to receive you, but The pastor Pokorny, who had if you are rogues, I have no wish discerned in him not only earnest
you, since there are enough in ness, but many other valuable qualmy kingdom already.'
ities, advised him to enter upon the John Jaenicke was the son of a ministerial office. Considerable obweaver, who came in with this stacles were in his way
for the present colony; he was born at Berlin, but having made up his mind, he July 6, 1748. As his parents were patiently endured delay, (in which poor, he was brought up to the there is more real piety than in same calling, and at the age of complaining of unavoidable hineighteen, left his home, to exercise drances) and devoted himself to it at Munsterberg in Silesia, where a small Bohemian settlement ex
* Isa. xlvi. 12. JANUARY 1833.
preparatory studies. While he but the good bishop recommended still worked at his trade, he lear him to labour in a wider field. ned Latin and Greek in his leisure When communities in general are hours, and after three years, was eager to increase their numbers by enabled to become schoolmaster to proselytes and partisans, such disthe Bohemian colony at Munster interestedness ought to be appreburg, which was an important ciated, and held up as the true step, as he thus became known, Christian pattern.
Jenicke foland could prosecute his studies lowed his advice, remained a memconveniently Some time after, ber in the Lutheran church, and he obtained a similar place at received in 1779 an invitation from Dresden, where he acquired a the Bohemian congregation at Berknowledge of Hebrew, and at lin, by which he was brought back length in 1775, at the age of to his native place. The religious twenty-seven, he entered at the spirit which had formerly impelled University of Leipzig. There he these colonists to leave their counremained three years, during which try, had not declined in the lapse time his lines fell in a goodly of nearly half a century; they deheritage, * for the pietism which sired a spiritually-minded pastor, Spener had awakened over Ger and found their wish fulfilled in many was still in action, and con Janicke. But he was not only sequently all the pulpits were filled called to resist evil in its natural by Evangelical preachers; among forms, a new enemy had sprung these he was particularly attached up, of a much more subtle, and to Dr. Christian Crusius,t to whom therefore a much more dangerous he often alluded afterwards in the character. pulpit, as to one who had been Frederic William I. of Prussia, blessed in “ turning many to righ- with all his eccentricities, valued teousness." | Indeed he always religion. Frederic II. commonly retained a pleasing remembrance called the Great, was not only of the days he passed in the Uni- impious at heart, but delighted in versity, which is a sufficient proof impious society, thereby affording that he had spent his time well, a whole length resemblance of the and had not wasted it in idleness, Apostle's words, “ Who knowing
embittered his recollections the judgment of God, that they by vice.
After having finished which commit such things are worhis studies, he became tutor in thy of death, not only do the same, a German family. But the ob but have pleasure in them that do stacles to his ordination being them.”* Not only was profaneness now removed, he was anxious to encouraged at court, but the whole obtain it, being desirous at the system of administration was emisame time of entering into the nently ungodly, and as an instance, Moravian Society, and exercising it may be mentioned, that the his ministry among them, which instructions given to the military could be done compatibly with his during the seven years' war, were early associations, as the United of the most demoralising kind, Brethren had a colony at Berlin. Mr. Pusey, in his work on German With this view he addressed him Theology, mentions his having self to the venerable Spangenberg, heard from one who knew the who had succeeded Count Zinzen- King, that before his death, he said dorf in the presidency at Herrnhut, he would give one half of his domi
nions, to leave the other half in the * Ps. xvi. 6. + Author of a work on moral philo
same moral and religious condition sophy. Dan. xii, 3.
* Rom. i. 32.
in which he found them at his the crown, many of the Protestant accession. The evil was immense, clergy allowing themselves unand the power which had been bounded freedoms with the docbuilt upon
the sand fell at the first trines of their confessions, denying blast: the wars with France which many important articles of protesfollowed a few years after, tantism and Christianity, adopting disastrous and disgraceful, and sub- a modish tone in their manner of jected the whole land to the op- preaching, perfectly opposite to the pression of a victorious and profli- spirit of true Christianity, and thus gate soldiery. Yet if the evil had shaking the very pillars of the been confined to the administration faith. They are not ashamed to alone, it might soon have been serve up again the wretched and repaired, “ but wormwood had often refuted errors of Socinians, fallen on every stream,”* the very Naturalists, Deists, and other waters of life were made poisonous, sects, and with boldness and imand the leaves of the tree of life, pudence to spread them among which were given for the healing the people, under the extremely of the nations, were tainted like abused name of enlightening ; to those of the Batavian Upas : the depreciate the authority of the study of scripture, instead of being Bible as the revealed will of God, consecrated to religion, and thus to corrupt, to explain away, or causing “righteousness to run down utterly to reject the sacred records; as a river, had been distorted
to represent faith in mysteries, and into an aid of impiety, and many a
particularly in the Redeemer's divine, whose lips should have kept atonement, as ill-founded or superknowledge,“ reduced the principals Auous, and thus to reproach our of Christianity to a mere accord- common Christianity.' This edict ance with deism, explaining away might have had more weight if the every thing miraculous in the
gos- character of the Sovereign had pel history, and criticising the Bible been truly Christian, but unfortuwith a temerity beyond all bounds, nately it was not. rather like an advocate of infidelity During the progress of this dethan of revelation.” +
eline, Jænicke maintained his Frederic William II. who as- ground as a faithful preacher of cended the throne on the death Christ crucified. It will be seen of his uncle, issued an edict in by the foregoing remarks how 1788, remarkable for the testi
necessary it had become to hold mony it bears to the melancholy fast the form of sound words. In state of religion.
Long before such times, one needs the resowe ascended the throne, (he says) lution with which Joshua was enwe perceived the necessity of re
“ As for me and my straining, as far as we can, infi- house, we will serve the Lord ; delity, superstition, corruption of still it is to be sought in humility the great truths of the Christian
and prayer, not in the hasty temfaith, and the licentiousness of
of Peter, when he exclaimed, manners arising from these. We 5. Although all shall be offended, yet have observed with regret, for will not I;" and it will be found, before our accession to that those only who are convinced
of sin, will cling to the assurance * Rev, viii. 10, 11. + Gorton's Biog. Dict. art. Sember.
of righteousness. Jænicke 'Michaelis, who had witnessed the com- stedfast in keeping his way, and mencement of the great revolution which thus, in the midst of defection and took place in the opinions of the German Protestant clergy in the last century, said,
corruption, he preserved his soul. 'Heretofore I was reckoned heterodox,
Such buildings as were raised with but now I am only too orthodox.— Ibid. hands, were stormed or under
abled to say,
mined ; but the rock on which his the successive trials of the evils of faith was built defied
attack. warand of a decline in religious zeal. A real conversion alone enables us At first, some pious individuals to keep firm to the Gospel; edu subscribed to assist it; afterward cation may make us profess it, the Missionary Societies in Engvirtue may cause us to honour it, land extended their aid ; and the but neither of the two is proof happy result is, that it still exists, against the adversary : so crafty and like a tree which has taken a firmer so manifold are his devices.
hold of the soil for being shaken As his stated engagements did by storms. Some of its students not require him to preach more have proved valuable labourers in than once on the Sabbath, (alter the service of those Societies, and nately in German and the Bohe thus repaid the debt : in 1820 it mian dialect) he added an extra had sent out as many as thirty, ten service in the morning, and also of whom had gone into different one on Mondays, when he summed parts of Asia, and twenty to the up and enlarged upon what he had western coast and the south of said the ay before. Toward the Africa ; since which time, most close of the century, the necessity of its inmates have entered into a of counteracting the spread of in different part of the vineyard, fidelity, and of casting oil upon with the view of preaching the the fire which was drenched with Gospel to the numerous Jewish water, was deeply felt.
An families in the Russian and Prusassociation was formed for this sian dominions. * purpose, to which laymen and
In addition to these two engageministers contributed their means, ments of Pastor and Director, their talents, and their exertions : Jænicke accepted the charge of among these excellent men no one Secretary to the Bible Society of was more conspicuous, either for Berlin. He had the happiness to zeal, or the sacrifices he made to see the wane of infidelity and extend the cords of the kingdom of neology, and a healthier impulse God, than M. Schirnding of Debri- given to Biblical studies. In 1825 tugk in Lusatia; he published a his strength began to decline, and number of religious tracts in French, he found himself obliged to lessen German, Polish, and other lan his labours gradually, first by disguages, and to devote his fortune continuing the prayer-meetings held to the Lord for ever, he founded in his house, then by omitting the the Missionary Institute at Berlin. lectures of the Missionary Students, Having lately become acquainted and at length by sitting while he with Jænicke, he offered him the preached. He had exercised a direction of the new establishment,
valuable ministry for half a century, which he readily accepted, and and felt that it was time for others gave it his most earnest attention. to enter into his labours. The It was opened and seven young Monday's service as well as that men admitted in 1800; when sud of the Sunday morning, was also denly a total reverse of circum- given up, in consequence of his stances befel the generous founder, extreme weakness, but he had the and he was obliged to withdraw his satisfaction of remembering, that donations for his own support, and they had seldom been interruptas the Institute had no other funds, its ruin seemed inevitable. But
* The Report of the Church MissionProvidence watched over it, and by ary Society for 1817 (p. 481) mentions the perseverance of Jænicke it was that they were indebted to him for several
valuable Students from the Berlin Semimaintained, and carried through
nary, at a time when Englishmen were not * See Pilgrim's Progress, part 1. c. 5. to be procured.