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RATHMINES, DUBLIN. THE SECRETARY of the Society spent the month of August in visiting several of the stations in Ireland. He supplied two Lord's days at Rathmines. His visit has fully confirmed every anticipation of the success of the effort to establish a Christian church in that important suburb of Dublin. The few friends resident there who are associated in the good work, are devoting themselves most earnestly to it. The congregations are very encouraging, the hall being nearly filled in the morning, and still more so in the evening. Persons of various denominations have become regular attendants, and thank. fully avail themselves of the means of grace thus presented to them. The spirit that prevails is such as to give the greatest encouragement. Every prospect is presented of a still larger congregation being gathered when a suitable chapel has been erected. This cause promises to be, by the divine blessing, one of the most successful efforts the Society has ever made.
CORK. The following communication from Mr. MCCLELLAND relates an incident marked by great interest. The serious and earnest inquiry after truth, and the fidelity with which conviction has been carried into practice, are well deserving of thankful acknowledgment.
“On last Lord's day I had an unusually witnessed anything to surpass it, either in interesting service, and, as it was one of the this country or in England. Amongst happiest days I have had since my coming those present on the occasion I saw Episcohere, I am sure you will be pleased to hear palians, Presbyterians, Methodists, and something of the occasion. Some time ago Romanists; and since Sabbath I have been 1 was visited by a man named Splaine, who much pleased to hear such expressions as wished to converse with me on the subject | these from our own members : -- We never of baptism. After repeated visits, and when had such an occasion before.' "The Lord I became thoroughly convinced of his de- was with us, &c. Strangers, I was told, sire to follow the example of Jesus Christ made such remarks as these :-'He was in that ordinance, I proposed him for mem- right in all that he said. “He had the bership at our last church meeting, when it Scriptures on his side.' 'I shall go and was resolved that he should be baptized and hear him again,' &c. But whoever might received. The next day I wrote him to say that I was right, the son of our that effect, and appointed a day for his bap- brother felt it, and at once resolved to act tism. On Saturday last he arrived here upon his convictions ; for, before leaving with his son, both having travelled thirty- the place, he came into the vestry and refive Irish miles to obey the Master's com- quested me to propose him at the next mand. I was pleased, delighted, to see the church meeting, as he had resolved to son who had come all that distance to follow the example of his father, and the witness his father's baptism; and still more commandment of his own and his father's delighted to see the old man so intent on God. And now do you not think I had following the Saviour. Forcibly reminded something to feel pleased about? Here was of Jesus Christ himself coming from Naza- a man who had been brought up a Roreth of Galileo to be baptized of John in manist-still living in a Romish country, Jordan, next day I preached from Mark i. 9. thirty-five miles distant from a Baptist The congregation was good, the people chapel-never had seen a Baptist minister were attentive — apparently much inte-before--not only fully convinced of the rested — and all present seemed deeply to scripturality of our views, but fully deterfeel the great solemnity of the occasion ; mined on following the example of the and although baptisms are so infrequent in Master, at whatever cost, trouble, or risk this part of the country that one might ex. of persecution. I might tell you a little pect some of the people to evince a good more about him, but I prefer transcribing deal of curiosity, yet such was the solemn a sketch which he sent me some time feeling produced, such the decorum ob- since of his experience, views of baptism, served, that I must indeed say I have never &c.; and as I felt interested in it, perhaps
VOL. II.- NEW SERIES.
you may too ; and as I shall give it ver, and here is some encouragement for all batim, in reading it you will please bear in who are labouring for their conversion. mind that it was written by a plain, un- In the next place it affords us an addilettered countryman.
tional evidence of the power of God's “ I was born and educated in the Church word not only to uproot Popery, and of Rome in my early days; but in the year break down the strongest prejudices1836 it pleased God to put the English and consuming both together like stubble---but Irish Bible into my hands, by the instru. also of its power, through the agency of mentality of a man who had been denounced the Spirit, to convince men of their sins, by the Komish priests. I immediately be convert them to God, and constrain them gan to compare the doctrines of the Church to become faithful followers of Christ. of Rome with the word of God, and found Here, too, we may see that the Scriptures them quite opposed to it. I studied very are not merely to be read as if it were a closely chapters ix. and x. of Paul to the task to read them, but, as our brother says Hebrews, and I clearly saw that the sacri- he did, they must be studied closely;' fice of Christ on the cross was perfect, and and if when they are thus used they can that satisfaction had been made forthe sins of produce such results in one case, they are the whole world. I also saw in chapter xix. of course, under God's blessing, adapted to of St. John that“ it was finished,” by which produce similar results in any number of is meant that he finished the salvation of cases: for we may lay it down as a rule that every believer. I was fully satisfied that God invariably blesses the earnest, prayerthe sacrifice of the mass was wrong, that ful study of his own word. Hence, then, the the Romish priests were recrucifying him. necessity of urging men not only to have These, with some others, led to my conver- the Scriptures in their houses, but also in sion. I embraced the Protestant faith, and their hearts : 'Thy word have I hid in my thought I was all right. Then I became a heart.' But lest you should think that I Scripture reader, both in the Irish and Eng. am multiplying deductions, I shall only add lish languages ; and, thank God, many be- one more--and that is, there is in this case lieved and received the gospel through me.'great encouragement for us all to work for
"About twelve years ago it was the will the dissemination of the truth. When of God to put into my hands a tract, with a Mr. Craps wrote the tract referred to concise view of baptism, written by J. Craps. above, and when the Baptist Tract Society After reading it carefully I saw that infant issued it, I suppose neither he nor they baptism was unscriptural and injurious. I thought of it finding its way, so soon at could not find a single passage in the word least, into a remote district in the south of of God authorising infant baptism, sprink- Ireland; and yet, by some means or other, ling, consecration of water, sponsors, con- it makes its way, directs the attention of firmation, or the sign of the cross. Having the reader to look more into the word of considered these points, I will obey and God, and finally produces results which follow my great Master, and will be im- must last throughout eternity. Many mersed in the name of the Father, and of Baptist tracts have since been sent to that the Son, and of the Holy Ghost. I find in neighbourhood, and circulated; and I am the New Testament that baptism is nothing informed that there is now much anxious until a person believes ; and is then only a inquiry amongst the people on the subject profession of faith in Christ.'
of believer's baptism. “Now, I think this short sketch from our “My tracts are out, and I need a new brother is really interesting; for, first, it supply very much. I should like to carry shows us his earnest desire whilst still a some there myself, and talk with the people. Romanist to find out the truth; and from I have got an invitation to preach, which this we may fairly conclude that, al. I mean to avail myself of; and if, when though unknown to us, thousands of there, I should see or hear anything worth Romanists in Ireland and elsewhere may communicating, you shall have it; and I be, and most probably are, at the pre- have some hopes of finding it a good field sent anxiously seeking for the truth also; for usefulness.”
CONLIG. MR. BROWN, who labours at this station, gives the following pleasing statement of the increased encouragement with which he has recently been favoured :
“I am glad to assure you that the viz., on Monday evening and Wednesday favourable symptoms to which I referred evening. These meetings average about in a former letter are not diminished, but forty, and are generally attended by the rather increased. Besides preaching on the same persons, comprising a few Christians Lord's day in Conlig and Newtonards, I of different denominations, and a number preach twice on week evenings in the village, who were utterly careless before. About forty persons, too, meet regularly in our publicly and with much propriety at the school-house on the Lord's day, between fellowship meeting on Lord's day afternoon. the services, for conversation and prayer. I may also mention the case of a young All the meetings are characterised by an man who seems recently to have been unusual degree of seriousness, and there brought under concern. On the evening of are hopeful evidences of some conversions. Monday was a week, I preached from Isa. Some of the most careless of the people xxxiii. 14, "The sinners in Zion are afraid, have become greatly alarmed, as well as &c. During the time of preaching I some who formerly thought themselves observed much emotion in the meeting, and Christians, and were esteemed as such by some cheeks moistened with tears. Next others. One evening, for example, I day one of the deacons told me that this preached from 2 Cor. v. 17, 'If any man young man had expressed his feelings on be in Christ, he is a new creature,' &c., leaving, and begged another man to go into and when I had finished, an old professor a field with him that they might pray. The came forward and declared before the peo- young man prayed himself, and on rising ple that it was his conviction that his reli- from his knees said, it was the first time gion was a delusion, and that he was still that he had prayed in his life. I called on in his sins. This man was wont to be very him to say that I should be glad to see him much opposed to us ; but his mind is now occasionally; that I had learned that he so far changed that I preach in his house ; was anxious about his soul. His lip quiand though he does not attend on the vered, and he was unable to make any reply. Lord's day, he has not been absent from a He also regularly attends, and would not be week evening meeting during the last three absent under any consideration. I hope he months. Another day I was passing by may be soon introduced into the liberty of the door of a man who has not been in a the gospel. There are other cases which I place of worship, I believe, for four years. could name, but these are the most strongly He called me in, as he said he had become marked, and I forbear to mention them lest much alarmed about his soul, and we had I make this letter too long. Last evening, some serious conversation. His convictions when I went to the meeting to preach, I have become strong, and his practice is alto- found the people on their knees, and a gether changed. He not only attends our member of the covenanting church leading worship on Sabbath days and week days, their devotions—a good preparation for but has set up an altar in his family-a hearing the gospel. May the God of all duty which would require no small amount grace pour out his Spirit upon us more and of courage, as his children are grown up and more, and cause the wilderness and the opposed to these things, as he himself solitary place to be glad, and the desert to formerly was. I understand that he prays rejoice and blossom like the rose !'”
ATHLONE. MICHAEL Walsh, the Scripture reader at this place, states in recent communications :
“I have been engaged as usual in re- whose wife is a Roman Catholic. There I lating to my fellow-men the simple story of met this man and had a close conversation the cross. I shall narrate a circumstance with him. He had become convinced of just as it occurred. I met with the subject the errors of Popery, and said, 'I have the of my narrative more than seven years ago. Bible that you gave me still.' Now, to He was then teaching a little school, called bring my narrative to a close, he came in this country a hedge school. It was boldly out from among them in the past outside the town in the Connaught district. month, and went to the little church in After some conversation with him, he came that locality, passing the Roman Catholic to my house, and I gave him a Bible. After chapel and the people going to mass at the a little time he left the place and, I believe, time. I trust this man and his wife are wandered to various parts of the coun- brands plucked from the burning. In the try; some time since he came back to the course of the past month I have had inte. adjoining parish, about two miles from the resting conversations with some Roman town. Last April, I went to that neigh- Catholics." bourhood to visit an aged Protestant man In a subsequent letter Mr. W. says :
My constant theme is the finished | ter, so that we bring prominently before work of Christ, persuading those whom I their minds the great truth, that Jesus is visit, that we have boldness to enter into the way, the truth, and the life ; and that the holiest by the blood of Jesus. I find, no man can come unto the Father but by by experience, that the less we dabble in him. The month before last, I gave some controversy with Roman Catholics the bet- account of the time-keeper that attended
the building of the Roman Catholic chapel, quite convinced of the errors of Rome. He and stated that I had given him a Testa- has also become acquainted with two ment early in the spring. He has since readers in connection with the Irish Church called frequently at my house, and we have Mission. He is, I believe, just on the eve had many profitable conversations. He is of coming out from Rome."
Mr. Berry gives the following report of his labours, and of the congregations under his care :
“ You will be glad to hear that our deacon at Cork when Mr. Trestrail preheavenly Father is blessing and sustaining sided there ;—a pastor and deacon nerer to me. I am in a measure realising the pro- be forgotten in Ireland. mise that the morning weeping seed-sowers
Moate. will in the evening rejoice in the full sheaves; may we all more fully have this
who came first to the Baptist chapel experience. The past (though suffering
at Athlone to hear you preach, and whom much from a hurt which prevented visit- he is constant with us, and has proposed
you noticed weeping, now resides ating) has been a month of much comfort, for communion with the church. I do hope joy, and hope. I was able to preach as usual at all my stations, and had the happi.
soon to have to report from Moate a greater
remarkable ness of seeing increased attendance, increased cause of joy than baptism
conversion. earnestness, and unmistakable evidence
Auburne. of a shaking among the dry bones, and among the members an evident influence of “Here there is cause of much thankfulthe Spirit of God. In the four little ness in the continued desire of the people churches under my care, there is an in- to hear. One of the brethren said, after crease of number, union, peace, and joy; service last week, ‘: You must get us more also in every congregation a steady im- room.' The place is literally filled. It has proving increase. With deep gratitude, been more than a year on trial, and well I have to say, "The Lord is doing great does it prove it to be a station blessed by things for us, whereof we are glad.'
Athlone. “I had a happy day in Rahue last called a good congregation for this town;
“The congregation is now what may be week. It having been known there was to be a baptizing, a much larger congrega, and I trust yielding fruit.
and the revival meeting still improving, tion than usual was present, and much serious, solemn attention. One lady espe- “Yesterday (August 3rd] Mr. Turner, cially and a young man I saw weeping. from Doone, visited me with a request After the sermon, I proceeded to the 'Silver from himself and neighbours that I should River,' an appropriate name, for the water establish a school there. They offer a is clear like crystal and the sand like silver house and garden, &c., and £15 a year, particles, and there I baptized two dear which equals £20. Would you kindly add young friends.
The day was fine, the £10? If I had there a good man that people orderly, and Roman Catholics and would visit in the evenings, I would expect Protestants said plainly by their looks, much good; it is one of my preaching· We respect your practice.'
stations, and one that would yield fruit. “I made there arrangements for another Other pleasing details I will reserve till baptizing the end of this month. Having next month. We hope when you have a spent the day at Rahue, I saw and heard minister established in Rathmines, to be much to cheer me. A young man asked favoured with visits from him, and indeed me would I baptize him? I found with it will form no inconsiderable portion of joy that he read his New Testament with joy to him or us if he bestows such profit, and that he was the nephew of the visits.”
The List of Contributions is necessarily deferred in consequence of the Secretary's
absence from London.
SUBSCRIPTIONS AND DONATIONS will be thankfully received by the Treasurer, Thomas PEWTRESS, Esq., or the Secretary, the Rev. CHARLES JAMES MIDDLEDITCH, at the Mission House, 33, Moorgate Street ; or the London Collector, Mr. W. F. CAREY, 1, Vernon Terrace, Portobello Road, Kensington Park; and by the Baptist Ministers in any of our principal towns.
THE CHRISTIAN'S RESOURCE IN AFFLICTION.
BY THE BEV, J. J. BROWN. "Is any among you afflicted? let him pray.”—JAMES v. 13. HUMAN life consists of alternations of joy and sorrow. These make up both the experience and the discipline of the present state. They form the chief elements which enter into individual experience, and they mark the changes which constitute the history of families and of nations. The one follows the other in rapid succession; and sometimes joy and sorrow are so intermingled that it is difficult to determine which feeling preponderates. No one is entirely free from “affliction ;' no one is wholly precluded from being “ merry.”; Now adversity depresses the soul, and then prosperity elates the mind. Joy and sorrow are frequently found mingled in the same families, ofttimes struggling in the same heart. They resemble the changeable season of spring: as at one moment the sun shines in mild, but unclouded radiance, and at another the heavens are clothed with vapour, and the refreshing shower descends; so at one instant the heart is merry," and the smile lights up the countenance, and at the next the tears suffuse the cheeks, and chase away the trans sient gleam.
The gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ is designed to regulate every state in which we can be placed. Its holy and consolatory influences extend to every condition and circumstance of human life. It is intended to sanctify both our trials and our pleasures. It does not promise exemption from affliction, but it provides a resource for the afflicted; it does not secure constant joy and gladness, but it increases, purifies, and regulates them when possessed. There are many who reserve religion for special seasons and circumstances. They deem it suitable for adversity, affliction, and death. They think it can minister support in trial, consolation in sorrow, and hope in death. It enters the house with the physician, and leaves it with him also. They do not see its excellency, nor feel their need of it in prosperity. They think it detracts from their enjoyments, and casts a gloom upon their happiest moments. It interferes with the desires, affections, and pursuits which they cherish. It prescribes a disVOL. II.-NEW SERIES.