Imágenes de páginas
PDF
EPUB

into the hands of a half civilized stranger who set so much value upon it; and they will join the Committee in praying that, by the Divine blessing accompanying it, it may prove to him, and many of his countrymen, their guide to everlasting life."

From the Second Report of the Ladies' Branch of the same Society.

"The Commitee bave particular pleasure in noticing the frequent instances of the poor recommencing a Bible subscription. A very poor woman, having finished her subscription for a Bible for herself, is now subscribing for a Testament for each of her seven children, in succession. In one association, five Bible subscribers, having completed their subscriptions, renewed them for Bibles or Testaments for others in their families; and, in another, a poor man, previously without a copy of the Scripture, (except as he borrowed it,) having completed his subscription for a Testament, continued to subscribe for one for each child, saying, with God's bless ing, his children would, in reading it, obtain peace to their hearts, and then they would find their wants in this world to be very few.'"

From the Sixteenth Report of the Hibernian Bible Society.

“The total number of Bible Institutions of every description now in connexion. with your Society throughout the king dom, is, 111, being an addition of thirty

one since your last anniversary. This steady progress towards the occupation of the whole country by these benefi« cent institutions, is highly encourag ing. Still much remains to be done.. There are yet six counties which pos sess no institution in connexion with your Society, and eight more in which the Bible establishments are confined to only one town, and its immediate vicinity.

"The sum received in free contributions amounts to 2,6167.; making an excess over that of last year of 1,4371.

"The following fact will prove that poverty is no bar to subscribing for the word of God, and should encourage those who engage in the work to visit every habitation, however apparently wretched. In canvassing one district in the city of Dublin, a person was applied to, of rather decent appearance, who declined subscribing, alleging that he could not afford it. The collectors asked him if there were any lodgers in the house, to which he replied, "There are several; but they are so miserably poor, that you may save yourselves the trouble of going up to them." They however went up; and although they found the report not exaggerated, they obtained three subscribers for Bibles. On telling the man below of their success, he said, 'I am ashamed of myself,' and put his name down as a subscriber.”

VIEW OF PUBLIC AFFAIRS.

FOREIGN.

FRANCE. The late elections have turned out in favour of the ultra-royalist party, the party at present in power. We do not augur any thing permanently favourable to the tranquillity of France, from any temporary accessions to a cause so widely unpopular; on the contrary, the probability of a strong reaction is increased by whatever tends to render the ultra-royalists vainly confident of their strength, and heedless of public opinion. Nothing explicit is declared respecting an invasion of Spain. In this measure, many of the military, who are naturally eager for employment, might doubt less willingly concur with the ultraroyalists, however little they may wish success to their object; but at present the reports are favourable to peace. It would seem probable that no decisive determination has ever been formed on the subject; but that the advocates

for the invasion of Spain have trusted in a considerable degree to the chances not only of what might occur in the negociations with England, and with the members of the holy alliance, but of what might transpire respecting the temper of the French people, and also the progress of events in Spain itself. Had the success of either party in Spain been complete, and apparently irreversible, the French government would probably have not been long in making its election. As matters at present stand, its army on the Spanish frontiers chiefly tends to keep up irritation throughout the whole peninsula, and to encourage the anticonstitutionalists to persevering opposition, which, but for this and other foreign countenance, might have died away. It seems doubtful, after all, whether this "army of observation," originally stationed on the borders of Spain, under the pretext of being a

on all hands acknowledged to have borne an honourable part in this Congress, as respects interference with the Internal affairs of Spain.

sanitary cordon to prevent the importation of the Barcelona fever, has not in reality been kept up for domestic purposes. But if this be the case, we may confidently predict, that the TURKEY.-The views of the Congovernment will experience as little gress respecting the affairs of Greece fidelity to its interests in its native and Turkey, are as little known as its standing army, in a contest between determinations relative to Spain. Nor itself and the public, as popularity to are the proceedings of the hostile parits cause from its Swiss stipendiaries. ties themselves clearly ascertained. SPAIN. The casualties of the civil war The rumours are, however, generally now raging in this unhappy country, favourable to the Christian cause. appear to have continued in favour of Chourschid Pacha is described as in the Constitutionalists. General Mina the most forlorn condition; and the has obtained some recent successes Albanians are said to have deserted over the desultory bands of the “ army the Ottoman standard. The Turks of the faith" in Catalonia, command- themselves, it is added, are indignant ed by the baron d'Erolles; in conse- at their government, on account of quence of which the ultra-royalist its demand of the surrender of their party, which denominates itself the gold and silver into the public trearegency of Urgel, has retired north-sury for the service of the war; and ward to Puycerda, a fortified town at the foot of the Pyrenees, and on the very frontiers of France. The Cortes seem firm to their cause, and are making great exertions to raise troops and to procure loans. The regency of Urgel also has been negociating a loan in Paris: the probability of repayment, in either case, depends upon the contingency of success; as the victor is not likely to recognize the debts of the adverse party. Among the principal rumours respecting the intentions of the congress of Verona towards Spain are the following: that in consequence chiefly, it is alleged, of the strong representations of the duke of Wellington, as to the impolicy and injustice of hostile interference, no such measure will be adopt ed, unless in the event of some such atrocious act as the murder of the king, or an attempt to sow the seeds of sedition and revolution in other countries, as was the case in the French Revolution; but that strong representations are being made, or are to be made, to the Constitutional Government to modify the more democratical parts of its constitution, so as to render it a safer neighbour and example among the European nations. It has also been rumoured that the Cortes themselves are convinced of the necessity of giving the king a final, instead of only a provisional and temporary, veto on its enactments. These and other rumours seem to be founded rather on what the reporters consider probable or desirable, than on any actual knowledge of the proceedings at Verona, which are conducted with the utmost secrecy. Great Britain, however, is

refuse to comply with the order. The intelligence of the unprovoked and inhuman massacre of the inhabitants of Cyprus, has been confirmed. Men, women, and children perished, like the unhappy people of Scio, in one indiscriminate slaughter; and it is even stated, that the Turks have determined to act upon these precedents, and, fighting, as they urge, in the cause of God and their prophet, to give no quarter to any Christian who falls into their hands. Strongly as we deprecate the principle of international interference, without imperative necessity, we cannot see how Christendom can justifiably look on scenes like these, and not feel itself called upon to impose upon Turkey an observance of the public laws of Europe, and of all civilized countries, which have been grossly outraged in these proceedings. Will not the blood of the Sciotes and Cypriotes call down' for vengeance on their fellow-Christians who refuse to interpose the arm of justice and humanity for their rescue? We need scarcely add, that all accounts represent the internal state of the whole of the provinces and islands involved in these disputes as most miserable; commerce, agriculture, and manufactures utterly languishing, and no prospect, should hostilities continue much longer, but of famine and speedy depopulation. How can British Christians be thankful enough that war has not for so many years stained their domestic soil! How can they do enough to lessen the miseries of nations less favoured with liberty, education, and the blessings of the Gospelof peace ?"

734

[Nov.

OBITUARY.

REV. EDWARD TOWNSHEND. On July the 24th, of the present year, died the Rev. Edward Townshend, thirty-three years Vicarof Bray, Berks, and Rector of Henley-on-Thames thirty-eight years. He was the only son of the Honourable and Reverend Edward Townshend, Dean of Nor wich, who married Mary, daughter of General Price. Being deprived of his father when young, he was received into the family of his uncle, the Honourable and Most Reverend Dr. Cornwallis, Archbishop of Canterbury, with whom he resided till he went to college. He received his education at the Charter-house, whence he removed to Christ's College, Cambridge, and gained a Tancred Scholarship. The extraordinary elegance of his per son and manners, jomed to his high connexions, and a naturally amiable and engaging character, rendered him an object of admiration, or regard, or envy, according to the different dispositions of those with whom he associated. His society was much courted, and he had not only a large acquaint ance, but made many friends-friends who were much attached to him to the end of his life. Yet with all these outward excellencies, Mr. Townshend was proud and irritable. He could seldom bear contradiction, and (as he has often declared to the writer of this meinoir) was "vainly puffed up by his fleshly mind" to seek the applause of men far more than the favour of God. The benefits which a merciful Creator had bestowed upon hun only rendered him the more thoughtless of the Fountain whence they owed, and the Giver was forgotten in the selfgratulation caused by the possession of his gifts. In the midst, however, of these worldly distinctions and enjoyments, it pleased God to bring him to a sense of his own sinfulness and debasement, and to shew him that all his natural advantages were of no value except as used to promote the glory of God. This was not, however, accomplished without much inward opposition; for his early habits, his constitutional propensities, and other circumstances, all conspired to render the conflict arduous. But the power of Divine Grace at length triumphed; and those Christian friends

who had hitherto regarded him with attractive qualifications, had now the affection and admiration for his many delight of seeing whatever was amiable in his character brought under the dominion of Christian principle, by the pervading influence of which he shine that God was glorified. was now enabled so to let his light

important change began to take place It was in the year 1798 that this in his religious character; and it is the more observable as he appeared to could have no inducement of a secular want no earthly good, and certainly kind, but quite the contrary, to take up his cross and follow his Reconcerned, he seemed to possess every deemer." So far as this world was thing which could contribute to his happiness, while of his safety with respect to another life he had till now entertained no apprehension. But he had not, till this period, "the true knowledge of God:" he was ignorant of the holy and spa requirements

: he was unac

quainted with the peculiar blessings
of the Divine
of the Gospel; and, to use his own
expression respecting himself, he was

a blind leader of the blind." He
confessed, indeed, vaguely that he was
a sinner; but he saw nothing of the
sinfulness of sin, or of its deserts in
the sight of God; and altogether he
haps as obviously, as if he had been
needed as certainly, though not per-
of a less amiable and engaging cha-
racter, a complete renovation of heart
before he could be qualified for the
enjoyment of the heavenly world.
This change was very gradual. Mr.
Wilberforce's
Christianity" appears to have been
"Practical View of
especially useful to him when the
subject first dawned on his mind:
chapter of that work which, for a long
but there was a sentence in the third
time,presented peculiar difficulty to his
apprehension. 66 Christianity," says
conciling us to God when enemies, and
Mr. Wilberforec, "is a scheme for re-
for making the fruits of holiness the
effects, and not the cause, of our being
justified and reconciled." Mr. Towns-
end was long before he could compre-
hend this statement; till at length,
earnestly with a friend on the point,
after conversing one evening fully and
with a particular reference to the third

[ocr errors]

chapter of the Romans, he obtained a clear view of the scriptural doctrine of justification by faith-a view which he never after lost sight of. He frequently spoke of that evening as the time from which he dated his more distinct perception of what he called Evangelical doctrines; but he had for months before lived under their influence by the teaching of the Holy Spirit, for whose enlightening as well as sanctifying aid he was daily praying, and whose promise, that they that seek shall find, was fully verified in his experience.

From this time Mr. Townshend walked closely with God, growing in grace and in the knowledge of his Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. Nor did the change which had taken place in his religious sentiments, fail to dis play itself in his conduct, or to produce in him the distinguishing and appropriate fruits which accompany true repentance and faith. He speedily renounced many worldly pursuits in which he had formerly indulged. He was no longer to be seen in those resorts of fashionable amusement in which he had previously mingled, but an attendance on which he now felt was incompatible with the nobler objects of his high vocation as a Chris tian. In the exercise of his ministerial office, the change in his character was especially striking. "The grace of God was seen," and its powerful influence over his character displayed, in the fervour and devotion of his public ministrations; in the deeper anxiety which he now manifested for the spiritual interests of his flock; in the additional means of instruction which he laboured to provide for their welfare; in the frequency of his pastoral visits among them; and in the delight which he felt and expressed whenever any of them seemed to profit by his exertions in their behalf. Nor was the power of true religion less conspicuous in the improvement of those parts of his character which, as has been mentioned, were naturally the most faulty. He who before was proud became deeply abased in the sight of God, and learned to think more highly of others than of himself. He whose danity before led him to court the admiration of his fellow-creatures, now renounced it as dangerous to his soul's health. He who was formerly ready to take fire at injuries and affronts, now received them with an exemplary portion of the meekness of Him who,

"when he was reviled, reviled not again." The peculiar features of his renovated character were humility and charity, in the large acceptation of the term; while that sincerity, firmness, and integrity, which had always been prominent features in his character, now shone with a still steadier and brighter lustre, being derived from principles and motives infinitely above the maxims of this world, or the suggestions of mere natural constitution or artificial refinement

In his creed, Mr. Townshend was a genuine member of the Church of England; a minister truly attached to her Articles and services, and who scrupulously adhered to all her forms, not from bigotry, but from a sense of duty, and a conviction of their excellence: yet he loved all who loved the Lord Jesus Christ, and never, it is believed, allowed himself to draw invidious comparisons. Maintaining, in the spirit of meekness and candour, his own preferences, he allowed the full rights of conscience to others, whe ther in or out of the Establishment.

The doctrine of justification by faith alone, he held to be the great pillar of every true church. To some points of secondary consideration, respecting which much difference of opinion exists, he assented just so far as he thought he saw them in the Bible, while he greatly regretted that they should ever be so maintained, or so opposed, as to occasion the slightest breach of Christian charity. Christ crucified, as the foundation of all our dependence, and Christ, in his various offices, becoming our" wisdom, righte ousness, sanctification, and redemp tion," constituted the subject of his public discourses and private teaching, and the ground of all his own hopes and expectations. He received every thing at the hand of God, as the gift of free and unmerited grace; and he went on from strength to strength, as a recipient of that grace, till he was removed to appear before his God in the heavenly Zion.

For several years previously to his death, he found his strength declining, and therefore desired constantly to keep that solemn event in view. Many quotations from his letters might be adduced in proof of this; but one may suffice. Writing to a beloved friend and relative, a few months before his decease, he says; We rejoiced to hear of your safe arrival, through the blessing of God at the scene of all

your duties and your joys. May your heavenly Father long continue you in the full and faithful discharge of the one, and a duly chastised enjoyment of the other! Perhaps my mind may be more led to these prayers in behalf of others, and more especially of those I love, since it seems to be the will of God to abridge me of the former, and at the same time to forwarn me of no very distant dereliction of the lutter. God in his mercy grant that these may be followed by a full fruition of those which eye hath not seen nor ear heard, &c., and which shall be the portion of all who are his by faith in Christ Jesus. You will not, I trust, refer these expressions to gloom, or the melancholy effusion of accidental depression of spirits. No: these have no part in them. I have long been sensible of a gradual diminution both of mental and bodily powers. This has evidently made great progress within the last two months; and an interdict, under which my medical adviser has now laid me, more especially from preaching and almost all professional exertions, confirms me in the persuasion, that my Heavenly Father graciously designs by these visita tions to putme on the watch. May I not defeat this his additional goodness, but be, if possible, in momentury expectation of the God of my salvation! This calls for your hearty Amen."

The death-bed of this excellent man was a scene not to be forgotten. It veri

fied the Scripture assurance," Thott shalt keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on Thee." He remark ed, that he "had not a ruffled thought;" that he was "severed from every earthly tie," (dear as many were, and one in particular); that his desire was to depart and be with Christ, on whose full salvation all his present hopes and future expectations reposed. He displayed an entire resignation of him self and all that he had, into the hands of his Heavenly Father; expressing such views of his own sinfulness, as made the atonement of Christ in its personal application to himself, infinitely precious. He strongly felt the value of the Divine promises at this trying period; and remarked: “I have often studied the promises of God, and believed them, and knew that they were very full; but never felt, nor could I have conceived, the full effect of them in my own experience till now." These promises were truly his support and consolation. The power and grace of Christ rested on hin: his faith and patience were never exhausted; and his "peace flowed on as a river" to the last. His care for the souls of others, and his desire to glorify God, became increasingly strong. He was sensible of his situa tion to the final moment of his earthly existence, and closed his eyes,doubtless, with a hope full of immortality."

W.

ANSWERS TO CORRESPONDENTS.

F.; J. S-, H; Пs; W. READ; S. B.; X., and R. G. will appear.

J. H; J. B-R; B. S.; J. M. W.; A CUNSTANT READER; VIGIL; R. B.; and A FAITHFUL FRIEND; are under consideration.

We much regret to find, that advertising Bills of a nature which we disapprove, have, in one or two instances, been placed under our cover. We have taken measures to prevent a recurrence of the evil; for which purpose it will be necessary, that persons sending Bills or Advertisements should transmit them to our Publisher, as directed on the Blue Cover, on or before the 20th of the month, to afford time for inspection. We must, however, again remind our correspondents, that we do not hold ourselves responsible either for bills or advertisements, except so far as to reject in toto such as are clearly excep tionable. Over the good taste and judiciousness of these articles of public information our control is necessarily feeble. We are much obliged to several correspondents who have called our attention to the subject.

ERRATUM.

For G. H., at the bottom of p. 635, and the top of p. 636, read George Harrison.

« AnteriorContinuar »